Aviation News

June 2, 2011

Donald Trump’s New Jet Arrives in New York: Is it a Campaign Plane?

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Several months after its purchase, Donald Trump’s new Boeing 757 landed at New York’s LaGuardia Airport for the first time on Wednesday. A huge upgrade in size over his recently-sold 727, could it be a signal that the Apprentice boss is in fact planning a run for the White House?

Trump lands at LGA for the first time. (Video by Matt Molnar)

The 757 (registered N757AF) is substantially larger than the 727 Trump jet. In its life as an airliner, the 757 would have room for up to 230 passengers in an all-economy configuration, about 80 more than the 727. Of course, Trump, best known for his over-the-top, gold-plated lifestyle, probably had it decked out with an entirely new luxury interior with far fewer seats than that. Or did he?

Recent history has shown the 757 to be the standard issue campaign jet for major Presidential candidates. The two most recent Presidents, George W. Bush and Barack Obama, both flew 757s to victory in 2000 and 2008. John Kerry also darted across the country on a 757 during his 2004 run and Al Gore, who in 2000 ran for President while still in the Vice President’s office, used the US Air Force variant of the 757–the C-32–to move from one campaign stop to the next. (John McCain used a Boeing 737 while Bill Clinton got around on a 727, if you’re keeping score at home).

Donald Trump Boeing 757 N757AF at LaGuardia Airport LGA New York

Trump Force One taxis to its new home at LaGuardia Airport for the first time. (Photo by Matt Molnar/NYCAviation)

Aircraft used for national campaigns are usually divided into a business class-style area for the candidate and his staff up front, and a larger but more cramped and airliner-like space for the media following him or her in the back. The 757 is the perfect fit for this mission, with enough room for everyone and enough range to reach any place in the U.S. nonstop.

While we do know that the plane was undergoing maintenance at a facility in Georgia for the past few months, there has not been any public revelation of the plane’s interior improvements. This particular aircraft was formerly owned by fellow billionaire Paul Allen, the Microsoft co-founder and aviation buff extraordinaire. It already had a VIP interior, though it is likely that Trump would have had it gutted and customized to his specs no matter how nice it might have been.

When asked by the Palm Beach Post in February if the new plane might be used for a campaign, Trump said, “It’s a big plane. We’ll see what happens.” Playing to his neighbors, Trump also said the 757 is “one of the quietest planes there is. I did that for the people of Palm Beach.” Perhaps it’s a bit quieter than the ancient 727, but by no means is a 757 quiet.

The plane had a previous life as an airliner, delivered in 1991 to Denmark-based Sterling Airlines. Later it flew for the now-defunct TAESA in Mexico before Allen bought it in 1995.

Donald Trump old 727 VP-BDJ.

Donald Trump's old 727 (VP-BDJ). (Photo by Phil Derner Jr)

The jet’s arrival comes on a day where Trump told local Fox’s Good Day New York he might still run for President as an Independent candidate if the Republicans fail to produce a strong candidate and two days after a high profile appearance in New York with fellow media-spectacle-lover Sarah Palin.

Trump’s signature black, red and gold livery adorns the new plane, though the “T” painted on the tail is styled differently than the one found on the 727.

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  • Trump’s new 757. Traded in his 727.¬†

  • Trump’s new 757. Traded in his 727.¬†

  • Donald Trump has a 757 now…

  • I wish Trump would run for office. He can not be bought off

    • Kelvin

      All of the other billionaires in prison thought they were invincible as well. They always want more.

  • Anonymous

    Come on Trump, why not an A380?? Only a true playa cruises in a 380.

    • Anonymous

      Then he wouldn’t be supporting American airplane industries..

  • Anonymous

    “…¬†delivered in 1991 to Denmark-based Sterling Airlines”.

    It was Sterling Airways.
    Not “Airlines”.

  • Reviews

    Rolling the aircraft is accomplished by turning the yoke in the
    direction of the desired roll, or by tilting the control stick in that
    direction. Pitch changes are used to adjust the altitude and speed of
    the aircraft; roll changes are used to make the aircraft turn.

  • safireitalia

    Bigger is not always BETTER…Trump use to come into Teterboro with his helicopter to pick up the BIG high rollers and take them to AC….Trump only cares about one thing …$$$$$$….and nothing else…i was at teterboro and knew people who worked there….just look at his plane…has his name on it…that should give you a clue…it is all about him…i saw his 727 long time ago…he use to be a regular at teterboro…he thinks he is GOD’s gift to the world….sorry MR Trump….God outranks YOU !!!!

  • Gerald W Murray

    I had invented Bird Strike deflectors of carbon fiber for lightweight cone shaped mesh screens that deflect all birds around the jet’s engines with toggle latches and a side hinge for easy servicing

  • George E. Smith

    What does he call it? Hair Force One?

  • ThunderinHiseyes

    I’d go with a C141 StarLifter and retrofit engines to turbofans…..

  • Sandy Hendricks

    How about a rocket one way to space