Are you tough enough to survive the Sun Country 737-800 Standard seat?

Are you tough enough to survive the Sun Country 737-800 Standard seat?

Can you remember the last time that someone told you to stay away from the bare-bones Standard seats on the Sun Country 737-800? I can’t, so I had to have a go of it myself.

The Standard seats are Sun Country’s most basic offering. Legroom is extremely tight, there are no video screens, and if I’m being honest, they are about as old and ugly as I am.

But that’s not important. The main purpose of this review is to prepare (and toughen up) your immune system to be able to handle the mysterious stains you’ll find around your seat. There will be stains. 

Boston, MA (BOS) – Minneapolis, MN (MSP)
Monday, March 13, 2023
Aircraft: 737-8Q8
Registration: N805SY
Duration: 2 hours 33 minutes
Seat: 20F (Standard seat)

Sun Country 737-800 side view (N805SY)
Sun Country 737-800 (N805SY) side view illustration by
SY1610 flight track
Our route from Boston to Minneapolis this morning as SY1610.

Those of you with a short attention span will be happy to know that I also shot a full video showcasing how the Sun Country Standard seat compares to the more premium seating option:

A full review of my Sun Country 737-800 Standard seat experience from Boston to Minneapolis

For those of you who haven’t been paying attention, Sun Country Airlines is now an ultra low-cost carrier. Their old first class product is long gone, but their basic economy offering isn’t all that much different. The seats are a lot thinner now, but that’s basically it.

Arrival at the Boston in Logan International Airport

I spent the night at the Hilton attached directly to Terminal A at BOS. Yeah, even though I had to hoof it all the way over to Terminal E to catch this Sun Country flight to Minneapolis, it was still an extremely convenient 10-minute walk (at most).

Departures level terminal E Boston Logan Airport
Departures level, Terminal E at BOS. The verdict? It’s far too cold to be standing around out here taking pics like this. 
Sun Country check in terminal E Boston Logan airport
Holy cow! I’m not sure how Sun Country ended up in one of the blingiest terminals here at BOS, but whatever they had to do to make it happen (no matter how immoral or shady) was totally probably worth it.
Sun Country check in and baggage drop terminal E BOS
*crickets* (let’s just hope I’m not the only one flying Sun Country to Minneapolis today).

Inside terminal E at BOS

So yeah. Sun Country is currently operating out of Terminal E at the Boston Logan International Airport. I found it to be a peculiar place for them to be, since this is a primarily international terminal hosting world-class airlines such as El AL, Qatar, and Lufthansa. How they ever decided that Sun Country is worthy of their presence is beyond me.

Inside terminal E Boston Logan airport
I have no idea why they put the huge “E8” sign flat on the ceiling like that, but it’s cool, and I’m glad it’s there. I wouldn’t know what to say about this pic otherwise.
terminal E Boston Logan airport interior design
Yeah, some parts of this terminal are really nice!
SANspotter waiting for sun country airlines flight at BOS
Not to poop on Sun Country or anything, but I definitely wasn’t expecting the ground experience here at BOS to be this stylish.

The boarding process for flight number 1606 to Minneapolis

My flight to Minneapolis was departing out of gate E4 this morning. It just so happened to be one of the gates where it was impossible to see the aircraft from the terminal windows, which was more than a minor bummer for this self-proclaimed (and very hardcore) AvGeek. Come on man!

Gate E4 Boston airport
Gate E4 is ours today. There was an Allegiant flight going out of E5, which probably means that this is the dedicated “riff-raff’ side of the terminal.
Sun country airlines mobile boarding pass
Riff riff or not, I’m ready! The real question is: are they ready for me?

At least they started the boarding process right on time. Sun Country’s on time performance isn’t anything to rave about, but they were pretty much on the money this morning.

Walking down jet bridge gate E5 Boston airport
What do you suppose her story is? Going to Minnesota to visit her grandchildren? Heading home from closing a $3b deal in Boston? The possibilities are endless!
SANspotter walking down jet bridge Boston airport
My story (flying from Boston to Minneapolis for the sole purpose of reviewing Sun Country Airlines for my blog) is far less sexy. I hope nobody asks.
Sun country 737-800 boarding door
Here we go! It’s been far too long since I’ve last stepped foot on a Sun Country 737.

The seats

It’s not very often that I’d advise against reading any of my airline reviews from years past, but whatever you do, stay away from my old Sun Country 737-700 economy review. It’s gong to be like a kick to the gut when you realize that those older basic economy seats were a lot more comfortable than the new ones I’m about to show you.

Sun country 737-800 best seats orange headrests
FYI, the seats with the orange tops are the “Best” seats (their words – not mine). Don’t get excited though – even the mysterious lady in the red jacket wasn’t impressed enough to stop and have a look.
Sun country 737-800 standard seats
I’ve now entered “Standard” seat territory (and it’s a little lonely back here). 
Sun country 737-800 standard seats row 20
It’s a little tight as well! Holy moly do these Standard seats ever look cramped.
Sun country 737-800 standard seat thickness
Yes these seats are a little thin, but $20 says you can’t find an ultra low cost airline with fat *** seats these days. It’s par for the course.
SANspotter in a sun country 737-800 standard seat
I think I was muttering something to myself about the good ‘ol days of fat *** economy seats.
Sun country 737-800 standard seat leg room
See? It pays to be a scrawny little 5’-10” dude sometimes. My knees aren’t even rubbing on the seat in front of me.
Sun country 737-800 standard seat space
To be fair, a bit of manspread was required to avoid seat contact with my knees, but y’all should know by now that it’s something I totally dominate at.
Sun country 737-800 standard seat power outlets
Pro: there are USB power outlets at every seat! Con: they’re so disgustingly filthy that you’re probably not going to want to get anywhere near them. 
Sun country 737-800 standard seat passengers
Cleanliness issues aside, it seems as if Sun Country isn’t having any problems selling Standard seats. This is going to be a full flight!

About those stained walls

OK. I totally get that airplanes become old and worn out. It’s the natural progression of life, and nothing stays new and young forever. However, I can’t for the life of me figure out how they let the interior of this particular 737-800 get so bad.

The floors were grimy, and the stains on the walls (and ceiling) had me recoiling in fear. I was basically afraid to touch anything – which automatically earns it the status of being every bit as disgusting as what you saw in my Hawaiian Airlines 767-300 economy review.

Sun country 737-800 gum on the walls
This was the blob on the wall next to my knee. Was it a wad of gum? A epic booger? I was actually sort of tempted to poke at it to see if it jiggled (it’s a guy thing).
Sun country 737-800 blood stain on the walls
There was no way in hell I was getting my fingers anywhere near this blood stain though.
SANspotter in a Sun Country 737-800 standard seat
At least I think it was blood. I mean, it’s not like Sun Country serves any sort of food items containing red sauce way back here in Standard seat territory.
Stains on the ceiling sun country 737-800
What the hell happened in this seat??

The departure

I’ll admit it. I was hoping for a crystal clear morning, which would have provided excellent views of the city skyline in the distance as we departed. It wasn’t meant to be – but it was still a very scenic taxi out to the threshold of Runway 9.

sun country 737-800 wing view at BOS airport
Pushing off the gate (thankfully I don’t see any boogers and blood on the wings).
sun country 737-800 taxiing to runways at BOS
But boogers and blood build character, right? This 737-800 must have some really good stories to tell!
sun country 737-800 taxiing for departure at BOS
Yeah, it’s kind of a gloomy morning here at BOS, but…
View of Boston from runway at BOS
It’s not gloomy enough to block the view of the Boston skyline in the distance! This airport is literally on the edge of downtown.
Sun country 737-800 takeoff from BOS
Nope, there’s nothing quite like a spirited takeoff to blow away any residual boogers and blood from the wings.

For those of you who’d prefer to watch a video of the full taxi and takeoff, your wish is my command:

In-flight entertainment

The hell? If there is one thing that I was absolutely not expecting to be included in my Sun Country Standard seat experience, it was a really good streaming in-flight entertainment product. There are no video screens in the seats, but their streaming video service is as well-stocked as it is on any other major US airline. Who would’ve thunk it?

Sun country airlines 737-800 streaming in flight entertainment instructions
USB power outlets *and* a streaming video entertainment service? What airline am I flying again?
Sun country airlines 737-800 streaming movies and tv shows
The selection of movies and TV shows via the complimentary streaming in-flight entertainment service is impressive. This totally offsets the blood on the wall next to my knee.
Watching Family Guy on sun country airlines in flight entertainment
“It seems today that all you see is violence in movies and sex on TV…”
sun country airlines in-flight entertainment menu
Here’s the fill in-flight entertainment menu (if for whatever reason Family Guy isn’t your jam).

The food

Unlike the in-flight entertainment, the cabin service was pretty much what I expected it to be. There were a wide variety of complementary drinks available, as well as a decent selection of premium drinks that you had to pay extra for.

Oh – I’m not a beer drinker, but there was some Minnesota-based beer on the menu that looked interesting. I’ll bet that stuff is a big hit (for those that are willing to pay for it that is).

sun country airlines food and drink menu
As you can see from the menu, nothing (beyond basic beverages) is free when you’re in a lowly Standard seat.
sun country airlines free drinks
Did you know that Diet Coke pairs well with boogers and blood? #themoreyouknow
sun country airlines snack and drink service
Maybe I should’ve asked if they had any disinfectant in that beverage cart.
SANspotter drinking Diet Coke in a sun country airlines standard seat
Come to think of it, whatever they put in Diet Coke these days will probably kill any form of bacteria you could throw at it!

Seat comfort

As I mentioned at the top of this review, the Sun Country Standard seats are exactly as advertised. Come to think of it, “Standard” might be too luxurious of a word. These are terrible seats to be stuck in on any flight over 2 1/2 hours in my opinion.

Leg room is extremely minimal, and my knees were hurting in less than an hour after departure. Anyone over 6 feet tall is going to be completely miserable in these seats.

SANspotter sleeping in a sun country airlines standard seat
How do you say “my back hurts” without sounding like an ungrateful idiot? I mean, this ticket was cheap AF, so I’m not sure what the protocol is for complaining.
sun country airlines 737-800 standard seat passengers
Yeah, I could’ve asked my seatmate about her opinion of the seats, but she’s been dead for at least an hour. 
sun country airlines 737-800 interior view from the back
Will anyone hear your cries for help from way back here? It’s just one of the risks you’ll have to take opting for the cheapest Sun Country Airlines seat there is.

The arrival into Minneapolis

I love flying into Minneapolis in the winter time. It’s been a while, but as a resident of San Diego who never sees snow anymore, it’s always nice to get a reminder of what winter used to be like. It was a beautiful descent and approach all the way in to Runway 30R at MSP.

Sun Country 737-800 wing flying over snowy Minnesota
SANspotter looking out the window of a sun country 737-800
I realize that I was most likely the only person in the vicinity of the state of Minnesota who was excited to see snow at that exact moment, but come on. This is wild stuff for San Diegan’s such as myself.
Sun Country 737-800 approaching runway 30R at MSP
The noises this plane was making during the approach to 30R led me to believe it was hoping for a run down to Cancun this afternoon. It don’t blame it. Looks cold out there!
Sun Country 737-800 landing on runway 30R at MSP
Welcome to Minneapolis!
Sun Country 737-800 arrival at MSP
Can you believe that we’re actually a few minutes early?
Sun Country 737-800 pulling up to gate H3 at MSP
At least I won’t have to stress out about having a short layover in Minneapolis today. Past experience has taught me that those can be more than a little gnarly.
Sun Country 737-800 passengers retrieving bags from overhead bin
Stepping off this plane is going to take a while, but no worries. My main concern at the moment is to remember not to touch any of the contaminated surfaces around my seat as I wait.
SANspotter carryon bag
My carryon bag is totally screwed though. I can’t even imagine the stuff it picked up while sitting on the floor for the past two and a half hours!
Walking off a sun country airlines 737-800
It seems as if the person seated up there in 4B is afraid to touch anything as well. Either that or maybe they just don’t want this experience to end?
Thanking sun country 737-800 crew after flight
“Thanks for a great flight! Oh, and you might want to call a hazmat team to come in and have a look at the stains on the wall (and ceiling) at 20F. And just for the record, it wasn’t me.”

Pros and cons of the Sun Country Airlines 737-800 Standard seats

In my opinion, the best thing about the Standard seats on Sun Country is how affordable they are. It’s a perfectly good option for anyone trying to save as much money as possible. If that’s your primary goal, you won’t be disappointed. Those of you with more discerning tastes probably aren’t going to like them. 


  • At least it’s affordable. It’ll most likely always be your cheapest option.
  • There are USB power outlets at every seat! This is surprising considering that even Southwest Airlines doesn’t offer this yet.
  • You’ll get a free drink (the non-alcoholic kind). Not only that, their menu of premium drinks (for purchase) is unique and kind of impressive.
  • Streaming video content is free!


  • The legroom (or the lack thereof) is downright torturous. RIP to anyone over 6 feet tall.
  • Sun Country doesn’t seem to pride themselves on the cleanliness of their aircraft. Their 737-800’s are getting on in years, and the interiors have the battle scars to prove it. They’re filthy.

Comments (3)

  1. Peter

    April 2, 2023
    • Scott (SANspotter)

      April 3, 2023
      • Peter

        April 4, 2023

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