Hello everyone! I woke up at 7 because friends of mine were leaving to Wisconsin. I showered and was ready to leave the house at 1030. I got to the train station only to realise that I left my wallet at home and so I frantically called home telling my brother where to look for it. He found it but as I was waiting for my bus to come, it came and left forcing me to wait for the next one. My dad came with my wallet and from there I waited for the next bus. The bus came at 1107 and I paid my $1,75 fare to the airport and I as I was on the bus I found out that my flight was delayed 45 minutes. I said to myself no big deal we still have time in MSP for my connection and also to meet my friend Jason from A.net. At 1150, I arrived at O’Hare’s Kiss n Fly and from there I took the airport train to Terminal 2.
I checked in and paid $25 to check my bag to Pittsburgh and asked why the plane was late and the agent said late arriving equipment. After that I walked over to Terminal 3 and saw some of my former coworkers from the airport. The security line was kind of long but I was able to cut most of the line. I handed the TSA agent my license and I scanned my mobile boarding pass and stood in line for the x-ray and metal detector. After I passed through I went over to K9 and visited my former bosses and then strolled to K6 and went into the wheelchair dispatch room and said hello to everyone.
After that I strolled down the H/K corridor looking for any agents that I was familiar with just to say hello. Sadly, I only saw 1 of them. I killed some more time and went to the G concourse looking for a former coworker of mine but she wasn’t working that day so I went to Terminal 2. I was highly impressed by the new design United did to each of their gates. It definitely looked modern and sleek but yet simple.
I met a Delta agent who I used to work with when I pushed wheelchairs for Northwest back in the day and I found out that she was handling my flight to Minneapolis. The aircraft arrived at 1507 and taxied in at 1519. I found out that it was N903DA. After everyone got off and it was cleaned, I boarded the aircraft at 1541 and I walked to my seat, 30E. I looked on the Delta App to see our new departure time and found out that it was 1601 with an arrival time of 1714.
Delta 1832 to Minneapolis
Delta to Detroit
United’s B Concourse
Virgin Atlantic A340 from London
Delta Connection to New York La Guardia
Lufthansa A330 most likely arriving from Dusseldorf
Delta 1832 delayed
Lufthansa being taxied over from T5 to T1
KLM 611 from Amsterdam
Etihad 777 from Abu Dhabi
Our plane from MSP taxiing in
Our MD-90 at the gate
A.net legroom shot on the MD90
After we all boarded, the pilot came on and said that during the walk-around he found fluid leaking from the left wheel well and was waiting on maintenance to come check it out to see if it was a simple fix or not. At 5.30 I decided and realised that I was not going to make my connection so I got off the plane and I overheard the pilot say that the crew was out of time. I called a Delta agent and told her my situation and tried to be rebooked over the phone but she was rude and kept telling me that I was going to make my connection when I clearly wasn’t. I found an agent who rebooked me on a United flight to Pittsburgh.
After I was rebooked on United, I walked over to Terminal 1 to receive my boarding pass for my United flight to Pittsburgh. As I walked by the flight monitors, I discovered that my aircraft was 40 minutes late and the reason was late arriving aircraft. I asked the agent if it was possible for a window seat and she said that there weren’t any and I gave her my United Mileage Plus number and soon I received my boarding pass I walked down to baggage claim and had a cigarette then proceeded through security to gate C26. I was hungry so I went to McDonald’s and got a burger and fries and sat down by C23 where they had a charging station for phones and other electronics.
Our A320 arriving from Portland, Oregon
Our A320 at the gate
We actually had a gate change to C23 which is what I was hoping for so I didn’t have to move and find somewhere else to charge my phone and eventually at 1945, our aircraft arrived from PDX. I found out that the registration was N437UA. I boarded the plane at 2015 and sat in 7B which was a bulkhead middle seat. We pushed at 2022 and taxied via A, A7, T, T10 to runway 32L.
We took off at 2038 and made a right turn towards the east. I found out that there was no Channel 9 available but the seatbelt sign was switched off at 2052. The pilot came on and said that the reason that we were late was because they had 2 planes break on them and then proceeded to tell us about their on-time gig.
The weather in Pittsburgh was just like Chicago around 74ºF and partly cloudy. The pilot also said that we’d arrive about an hour late to the gate. We started slowing down at about 2213 and we started out descent at 2216. The pilot came on once again and said that we would arrive at the gate at 2245 but was trying to get ATC to let us land from the east with an arrival at the gate at 2235. The gear came down at 2237 and we landed at 2240 on runway 28L and taxied via taxiway W and parked at gate C55 at 2244. I strolled from C55 to baggage claim J and was eager to see if my bag made it from Delta to United. I saw all these bags from the flight and so I moved to where the bags drop down and soon I saw my bag. I was very happy to know that it made it!
I woke up around 830 and did some last minute packing, turned on the tv and at about 1015, I get a phone call and an email from Delta stating that my flight was going to be 1 hour, 15 minutes late. My friend took me out to eat and we left around 1300 and got to the airport at 1345. I checked in, paid $25 for my bag to be checked to Chicago and I received my boarding passes and once again asked why the flight was late. I was told that it was a late arriving aircraft and also weather issues in New York.
I saw the security line and it was long but I found a sign for alternative security checkpoint and so I walked to the E gates and passed through security. The friendly TSA agent told me next time to remove my toiletries and I looked at her with a puzzled face. I then realised that I forgot that I had a can of body spray in my bag. I wished everyone a good day and I went on the escalator. I stood on it only to hear that the doors were closing so I started running down to catch the train and I made it on there just in time.
Delta 344 to Atlanta at D78
I strolled over to D78 and watched DL344 to Atlanta board and push back. I found out that the flight from Paris to Pittsburgh was cancelled and that was part of the reason that the flight was delayed. I found out that it cancelled because of a fuel pump issue. I then waited on DL165 from JFK to arrive at D76. I did some walking all around the airport talking to various friends on the phone and then I returned to D76.
I received an email from Delta stating that the flight got bumped up 25 minutes to a 1700 departure. A thunderstorm passed over the field and the red light was blinking stating that the ramp was closed and in front of us was a Southwest aircraft , N745SW. I saw the crew and they were chatting and I overheard that since this flight was wide open, there were 14 in the front and 34 in the back!
Delta 0165 coming in from JFK
Our plane taxiing in
Delta 0165 at the gate
Soon our aircraft arrived with a registration of N688DL pulled into D76 at 1616. I overheard the pilot say that the flight time will be a quick 56 minutes into JFK and then shortly I heard something about a groundstop so I went onto the FAA site on my phone and saw that JFK had a ground stop until 1730. We boarded at 1715 and I made my way down to 34F. Soon there was a warm welcome from the New York based pilots and the Atlanta based cabin crew.
Delta 757 wingshot
A.net legroom on the 757
American Airlines Super80 taxiing in from Dallas
After the thunderstorm and after pushback
Rain on the window
The weather in New York was 80ºF with good visibility but cloudy and we would climb to 37,000 feet. We were then informed that we had a takeoff time of 1911. I got a hard stare at a German couple seated right in front of me maybe because I was talking a bit too loud on the phone although I did watch them drink a Miller Lite with 20 minutes to go before landing. Across from me was a nice South African man flying PIT-JFK-DXB-JNB-DUR on Emirates and Mango.
We had a nice conversation in English and Afrikaans. The doors closed early at 1840 and we were told that we were getting out of here a little bit early. We taxied via C2, B and sat there for about 10 minutes, and then started the other engine at 1900 and proceeded further via B1 to runway 28R. We had a new takeoff time of 1906 but we were told that we would possibly have a bumpy approach into New York. We took off at 1094 and climbed out on some light chop at about 1918.
Climbing out over Pittsburgh
More storm clouds
Big storm cloud
I turned on my iPod and listened to my Bosnian music and I watched the world go by. The seatbelt sign turned off at 1927 but came back on at 1931 for some moderate chop. Landing was to happen in the next 15-20 minutes and the weather was cloudy with rain showers in the area with a temperature of 76ºF outside. The pilot told us that we would be landing on runway 22L with an arrival into gate 6 at 2006.
Manhattan in the distance
Descending into JFK
Descent started at 1945 and soon we landed on 22L at 2009 and exited at taxiway J. I had the chance to see a Swiss A330 take off from 22R and also a LAN 767, KLM 747, Emirates A380 at Terminal 4. We taxied via K, D to gate 7 since gate 6 was occupied. We finally parked at 2018.
I deplaned and found out that our plane was continuing onto San Diego. I wanted to go have a cigarette so I navigated my way to Terminal 3 baggage claim. On my way to baggage claim, I saw many international flights such as one to Abuja and interesting destination that we don’t serve here in Chicago. I went outside and had a cigarette with the nice South African man and when we were finished, we parted ways. He went to Terminal 4 and I went to Terminal 2. I somehow found my way to Terminal 2 through the signs and asking people.
I stood in line through security and saw that numerous people had boarding passes to Copenhagen. I cleared security through the metal detector and went to look around the terminal for any interesting flights. There were flights to Zurich, Tampa, Copenhagen and Shannon which was delayed until 0115 departing out of Terminal 2.
I made my way to gate 23 where I saw a huge amount of passengers standing around waiting for their flight to be called for boarding. I must say it was a huge crowd and everyone was on these iPads situated around the gate. I estimate that they had about 50 of them. I found and empty one, sat down, checked the status of my flight, charged my phone a little bit and read the Algemeen Dagblad.
Eventually our flight was called and I proceeded to 23G and made my way down to my aircraft where I wished the pilot a good evening and proceeded up the stairs as I was the first passenger onboard. Hey someone has to be first right? I made my way down to 14A and looked out the dirty window. We had a Minneapolis based crew and the pilot said that because of the storms that passed through New York, they were delayed as well which resulted in our delay.
A.net legroom shot on the CR9
We sat there and waited for catering to come and load on some drinks and ice and they were done at 23.02. We soon pushed at 2313 and taxied via M, B, V, C, E, FB to runway 22R. I was able to see a Virgin Atlantic jet, an American 777 and an Air Europa A330. We took off at 2338 and climbed out through some moderate chop. The seatbelt sign was switched off at 0016. The lady next to me asked me what I was writing about and I responded that I do a travel blog and if I worked for Delta and responded no.
I fell asleep for a little bit as I was exhausted from being away early in the day. Decent started at 0100 as we started our trip across Lake Michigan and the lights of Chicago soon appeared out my window. We flew over the northern part of Chicago, with a clear view of downtown Chicago. We flew over Chicago O’Hare and then made left hand turns for final.
The gear came down at 0021and we landed on runway 14R at 0024. We exited and taxied via M3, F, A and we parked at E13 at 0028. I deplaned and proceeded to baggage claim, got my bag and had a friend pick me up and take me home. I got home around 0120 and then went to bed.
United boarding pass
More boarding passes
In the end, I can’t fault the airlines for not being on time. Weather and maintenance happen and its just nobody’s fault. Overall Delta was good and after 11 years of not flying them, I would definitely fly them again. United one of the major hubs here but their service was good as usual. I still give Delta props for getting my bag from Delta to United something which I didn’t expect.
Thank you for reading this trip report and I hope you all enjoyed reading this and all comments are welcome!
For some reason embedding YouTube links won't show up but here are the links. Please click on them and watch!
767747 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 1759 posts, RR: 25 Reply 1, posted (1 year 10 months 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 7256 times:
Wow, looks like you had some eventful travel days!
Being that my girlfriend's family lives near ORD and we live in MSP, I'm very familiar with Delta ops in ORD. We've been delayed there several times. Its not usually a smooth travel day when we go from ORD back to MSP. Last time we were there (Easter) ... we were delayed for some time, but other flights including those to DTW and ATL were delayed much worse ... Interesting that you had so many issues on such a beautiful day in Chicago!
KingFriday013 From United States of America, joined May 2007, 1278 posts, RR: 10 Reply 3, posted (1 year 10 months 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 7231 times:
Great trip report Leo. Too bad you couldn't make it on the MD-90 but I'm sure you can do that some other time. Great job avoiding the 50-seater jets! That's all I ever get by flying to places like ROC and PWM.
sultanils From Belgium, joined Mar 2010, 1211 posts, RR: 29 Reply 6, posted (1 year 10 months 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 6530 times:
Thanks for this nice & picturesque report. Quite some operational issues you had to deal with, but in the end you got there safe and that's n°1 priority. Good to see you scored a 757 ride, but I think this type is relatively easy to catch in the USA?
Ps76 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 17, posted (1 year 10 months 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 4897 times:
Many thanks for the trip report. Is always nice to go virtually flying (in reading at least!) in the USA. I've been to OHare quite a few times in my life and I really like it. Some nice pics and videos too as well as detailed writing made for a very nice report.
Quoting CamiloA380 (Reply 16): Damn right! I still can't believe it when I see passengers blame the airline/airport
I told the agents on the phone that I used to work in the airport so I never got mad or upset. I took it in stride and awaited to see what happened next!
Quoting Ps76 (Reply 17): Many thanks for the trip report. Is always nice to go virtually flying (in reading at least!) in the USA. I've been to OHare quite a few times in my life and I really like it. Some nice pics and videos too as well as detailed writing made for a very nice report.
Hello Ps76! No problem! I hope you enjoyed it as much as I enjoyed taking pictures and writing it!
Leo/ORD -- Groetjes uit de VS! -- Heeft u laatst nog met KLM gevlogen?