It started with a Houston hub using A-300s exclusively. 727-200s and DC-9-30s were added later as smaller markets were added. To my knowledge, no L-1011s or 757s were ever utilized on the service. When it began seats 10A & 10B were removed at the gate to lower the minimum F/A crew required to five then reinstalled in the morning but it became more trouble than it was worth and the practice was discontinued. When the Moonlight Special began having too strong an impact on sister company Continental's business, the operation was moved to O'Hare. O'Hare was totally unsuitable due to weather and lack of gate and ramp space. The Moonlight Special was shut down sortly thereafter. CF Airfreight then started using its own aircraft. I believe Pan Am tried a similar product out of Las Vegas called the Starlight something-or-other. IIR, main Airbus routes out of IAH
were to: ATL
. 727s were used to PHX
with DC-9s to CLT
. I think MCO
also had a Moonlight Special flight. I remember working the ORD
run towards the end. They were a blast to work in the early days with tons of backbackers, seniors, and young families who had never flown before. The rampers in Houston used to sell barbeque and tamales to all the crews milling around in the middle of the night (ground time was usually two to three hours while all the cargo was being reshuffled). Another one of Eastern's brilliant innovations that died due to management incompetence.
I work for Southwest, but the views expressed are my own and do not necessarily represent those of Southwest.