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US A330 In Envoy Class And FL 717: PHL-PIT-PHL  
User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 53
Posted (12 years 4 months 1 week 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 3363 times:

Hello people,

The origins of my trip to PIT I find to be interesting, and I think you will as well, so I am going to explain them here. With that said, here it goes:

Sometime in early February:

Well, my school has a junior prom, and I kinda wanted to go, I had saved up the $104 necessary for a ticket (thats per couple, I was planning on buying my date's ticket also), and I had in mind a girl to ask to it also. Alas, when I asked her, on February 4th, I got a long and informative lecture on her feelings for me, and to sum it in the "Evelyn Wood" version, she said "No". There was no other girl I felt comfortable asking, and I seriously thought she would say yes, so internally I was somewhat taken aback by this, but externally I remained calm...anyway enough of that. What that established was that I now had Saturday, March 16th, the day of the prom, free.

Moving on...

A few weeks later, I was talking on a.net chat and browsing the USAirways website when I came upon the astonishing fact that on Saturday March 16th, US was running a PHL-PIT flight on an A330-300! This instantly grabbed my attention and I went and asked AccessAir on the chat (a real life travel agent) about fares, and he came back with the astonishing news of $80!Unfortunately, none of the return flights were good, all of them either being too tight of a connection or too late of an arrival (owing to my junior drivers license and local driving laws), so I thought quickly and tried Airtran for a return flight, and they had a perfect flight, plenty of time for a connection yet getting me back before the restrictions on my drivers license were in place. Fare results...US one way was $40 and FL was $34 and with taxes it was like $84, so I was all set to go. Only one obstacle remained: parental permission. I immediately began working my parents on this and eventually they gave in about 8 days before the flights were slated to take place, and my mom made the relevant reservations, but I was paying for this jaunt, and saw my allowance for the next several weeks go out the window as she spoke to reservations agents at US and FL. I went to bed that night an extremely happy person.  Smile

Friday March 15th:

After getting home from school, I immediately called the US Silver Preferred number to use an upgrade certificate from Coach Class to Envoy Class. The call was flawless and I found myself with an assignment for seat 7A in Envoy Class on US Airways flight 740. Things were going smoothly so far...now onto the flights!!

Saturday March 16th
USAirways Flight 740
PHL-PIT
Scheduled departure 3:45 PM
Scheduled arrival 5:01 PM
A330-300
Seat 7A, Envoy Class

I left my house in suburban Philly about 12:55 PM owing to my mom's paranoia about the weather and driving conditions. Needless to say despite a constant drizzle I made it to PHL in 45 minutes, an average time, and found myself with lots of time to spare. I had intended to park in the Term C garage, but the entrance looked closed so I moved on to Term D, entered (almost losing the ticket in the process), and drove up to roof level, where I planned on spotting for a while. Arrivals were using 27R, so I had a good view of approaches and touchdowns, and stood there for about 35 minutes spotting, seeing mostly USAirways traffic, but gasping as I saw an Air France A330 land on 27R, and I took about 10 pictures of its last airborne moments and touchdown on 27R...what a sight, it left me awed for quite some time. After seeing that nothing else interesting was coming, I made my way downstairs to the sidewalk and moseyed on over to the US First/Envoy/Preferred check-in and checked in for US 740, turning over my upgrade cert. and receiving a boarding pass for US flight 740 in exchange. Once checked in, I headed up the escalator to security, no problems there...at this point I must stop...to be continued...

Greg


Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
7 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineHurricane From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 1443 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (12 years 4 months 1 week 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 3104 times:

Sounds good so far...

User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 53
Reply 2, posted (12 years 4 months 1 week 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 3025 times:

...After clearing security, I immediately went to the food court between Term B and C to have my traditional pre-flight meal of Bourbon Chicken and White Rice from Asian Chao, which is the greatest fast food meal Ive ever had and I absolutely love it. As usual, it was superb and after devouring the meal, I headed off on the long walk to Terminal A, where my A330 and flt. 740 awaited me. I got there around 2:30, and found myself with a good hour of waiting, and not much to do, so I whipped out my book "Climbing the world's 14 highest mountains" and finished that, then moved on to my second book, Lionel Terray's autobiography "Conquistadors of the useless" I was about 30 pages into that, and really enjoying it, when boarding was called for the flight, after a slight announced delay owing to servicing it taking a little longer than expecting. I immediately hopped off my seat and got into the rapidly forming queue. Once I got to the head of the line I turned in my boarding pass, had my drivers license examined, then received a stub and I made my way into the jetway. I noticed the security agent was inside the jetway, but made no serious note of it until I heard in a friendly voice "Sir, can you step over here please? Just a routine security check" For the first time in my life I was wanded, and then my bag had a cursory examination done to it, and then I was sent on my way through the jetway. At the doorway, a male f/a was directing the passengers to their seats and I handed him my stub and said "7A?" and he pointed me down the near aisle to the right of the aircraft. The seat was in the back section of the 36 seat Envoy cabin, the section with 12 seats. I stuffed my bag into the overhead and noted the generous legroom. I plopped into the seat and was immediately wowed by the comfort. On the left armrest was the seat controls. I couldnt resist and started futzing with them, finding them a little bit hard to operate and slightly confusing, but I got the hang of it. I had just finished my seat test when an f/a came up to me and offered me and my seatmate a drink. I took my typical "Coke, no ice" but the seatmate declined stuff. A few seconds later it was delivered, and I had barely finished it when I heard the door slam and a near immediate pushback occur from gate A10. Visible out my window as I pushed back was a US 762 and a mobile lounge in operation. After pushback was complete it took a long time for the engines to spool up and taxi to commence. The captain made his greeting announcements, including the amazing fact that our cruise alt. on the flight would be FL 180, which is pretty low for the PHL-PIT run, Ive flown it many times and cruise is usually in the mid to upper 20's. Taxi was to 27R, where we waited briefly, then taxied onto the runway and made a 28 second roll, unbelievably short but powerful, yet bumpy, lifting off into the PHL sky at 4:05 PM, with an impressive climb rate. Once we climbed into the low cloud cover, I reached into the armrest and pulled out the PTV, hoping that it would work, but alas, seeing as no headphones were available...twas not to be  Sad As the climb lessened out, my in-flight drink order of another Coke w/o ice was brought, this time with the whole can, and I quickly downed that and lowered my seat to its full 160 degree recline and found it to be impressive. I intentionally did not sleep, but just lay there quietly, savoring the moment, as this would be my last A330 flight for quite some time, as a trip to Europe on US doesnt look like a near future event, and I didnt want to waste the trip by sleeping through it. Still, time flew (no pun intended) and all too shortly, descent into PIT was initiated and I raised my seat. Even in the "upright and locked position" I found the seat to be really comfortable as well for sleeping, which struck me as a little bit odd but thats how I felt. Downtown Pittsburgh rapidly appeared out my window and the aircraft became lower and lower. Our bird swooped in onto 28R in what is far and away the smoothest landing I have ever experienced in any type of aircraft. I was expecting a very rough landing with earthquake like effects on the cabin, but I got quite the opposite, and this left me greatly awed as we taxied off the runway and into a gate at the end of C concourse. After docking with the jetway, I hurriedly gathered my stuff, including a safety card that I swiped at the last second, then quickly made my way through the jetway and into the concourse...to be continued again...

Greg



Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
User currently offlineAvion From Bouvet Island, joined May 1999, 2205 posts, RR: 7
Reply 3, posted (12 years 4 months 1 week 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 2973 times:

Nice! Hope you enjoyed the A330!

Tom


User currently offlineA330300 From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 172 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (12 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 2939 times:

Nice report- Hope you enjoyed the 330. Question though- why did you waste the upgrade on such a short flight?

User currently offlineBWIrwy4 From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 940 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (12 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 2929 times:

So your mother finally let you step foot on an AirTran plane? I can't wait to read that part of the report. The A330 sounds very nice. Too bad I'll probably never get the chance to fly on one anytime soon.  Sad

User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 53
Reply 6, posted (12 years 4 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 2923 times:

Ill be finishing the report sometime next week as I am going away again and wont have access to the internet while gone...

regarding the upgrade...

I didnt really have anything better to use it on!!

Greg



Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 53
Reply 7, posted (12 years 4 months 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 2878 times:

well as it turns out...I am in LAS now and managed to get net access so hopefully I will be able to wangle the time to finish it...then Ill have to do my report on the trip out here and back...CLT-LAS-PHL in US F class going out and not sure what class coming back yet so that should come soon...

anyway...a more detailed explanation of why I used the upgrade (when I wrote that explanation I was in a bit of a rush, sorry about that)...

I dont really fly a diverse amount of routes...most of my segments are under 3 hours...and I fly in coach class usually...and on the A330 trip that was a trip taken for the sole purpose of experiencing the A330, so I figured...why not do it in style? Hopefully that clarifies things better...now on to the continuation of the report...

Once clear of the jetway at the end of PIT's C concourse, I turned around and noted that there was no windows there, thus denying me the registration of the aircraft, which i badly hoped to see (if anyone can find out this info for me, I would greatly appreciate it). I headed down towards the junction of the concourses at PIT, not sure what to do, as I had about an hour and a half until my AirTran flight back home boarded. Of course, per mom's instructions, I called home and checked in, then decided to check out the Asian Chao in PIT, which was all the way down one of the other concourses. I got my usual bourbon chicken and rice, finding it not to be as good as the one in PHL much to my chagrin, but there wasnt much I could do. I was sitting at the seating area there and noted something strange on the tarmac...sitting there was USAirways Express Dash-8 with the registration "EI-CHP"...I was very puzzled by this, and anyone that can shed some light on this as well, it would also be greatly appreciated...to be continued tomorrow night...being ordered to bed again  Sad

Greg




Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
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