northstardc4m From Canada, joined Apr 2000, 3143 posts, RR: 35 Posted (2 years 8 months 6 hours ago) and read 5851 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW CHAT OPERATOR
November 10, 2012, I had to fly off to Ft Lauderdale. Was getting on a cruise on the Ruby Princess... oh yea and getting married.
Delta Connection by Pinnacle
Booked Seat 3A
Actual Seat 3A
Dept Gate B12
Dept Time Scheduled 07:50
Actual Dept Time: 07:59
Dep Runway 06L
Arr Runway 22R
Arr gate C14
Arr Time Gate 08:58
flightplan ANCOL V443 YQO SPICA2
Checkin online didn't work...
Twas a rainy day in Pizzaville... err Toronto. :P
Arrived at Terminal 3 just after 6am. Checked in at the kiosk, had to check 2 bags and it wouldn't accept payment (again getting married, lots of stuff to bring...). DL agent pulls me aside and runs the credit card at the desk, works there. People behind me have the same problem with the kiosk... US customs was a breeze but security was not. I got "extra screening" oh fun oh joy... but survived it.
At the gate at 7:10 after stopping for breakfast. Plane is there having RON.
Boarding began at 7:35. Normal order till Group 1 then "everyone else"...
Gate check is efficient and quickly get on board.
After boarding there are about 10 empty seats.
7:50 comes and the door is still open, finally 10 more people board, flight is 100% full.
Pushback at 7:59, start and taxi out to Runway 6L today. On the way out i happen to catch a glimpse of something that made me go wha??? Namely sawtoothed nacelles on what I assumed was the Ethiopian 777... Well it wasn't, we got close enough to read the registration, ET-AOR... 787, 1st visit, and my camera was in the baggage hold! Oh well...
Acceleration on 6L is a bit uninspiring, but once airborne we quickly climb out of the wet grey and into the early morning sun.
Smooth flight to DTW, but no drinks service and no toilet due to maintenance issues.
Arrival onto 22R means a looooooooooong taxi in. But the CRJ zips right around and pulls into the McNamara terminal's gate C14 10 minutes ahead of schedule.
Delta Air Lines
Booked Seat 19F
Actual Seat 20A
Dept Gate A6
Dept Time Scheduled 10:20
Actual Dept Time: 10:23
Dep Runway 22L
Arr Runway 8L
Arr gate T5
Arr Time Gate 12:19
flightplan ROD3 ROD J43 FLM TONIO SOT FLCON7
Load: 26/26J, 25/26Y+, 132/132Y
Getting from Gate C14 to A6 meant walking through the lightshow tunnel and then hopping the train to the south end of the terminal.
When I checked in I got a random middle seat in economy, not the economy plus i'd payed for already. I asked in Toronto and they said check in Detroit. So I did check in Detroit. This flight was originally scheduled on a 75V, it had been switched to a 75X, so row 19 didn't exist. I had a long chat with the gate agent who tried to tell me I hadn't been charged for the economy plus (she'd be right normally but I'd bought it as part of a special e+/priority boarding/wifi combo, which had already been charged for the whole trip and codes provided). But on checking she realised i had indeed been charged and as a non-US booking apparently things work differently. But she moved me to Seat 20C in economy plus anyways and that was fine with me, i figured i could negotiate for the window seat which was taken.
Boarding began at 09:55, I was in Group 1 and got on 2nd in that group.
Seat 20C is the 1st row of economy plus, 20A was occupied by a nice little old lady who asked if i would switch with her before i could LOL. Happy to!
Door was shut at 10:23, pushback started soon after and we taxied out to the long line waiting for departure on 22L.
We got to the line, number 6 according to the flight deck. We were off in about 8 minutes into a clearing sky. Flight was smooth through out. I managed a decent shot of ATL as we were on downwind to 8L.
We had to wait for 5 departing aircraft on 8R (2 CRJs, 1 717 and 2 MD88s) before we continued taxiing to the T concourse. I have to admit I've never in all my visits to ATL been to T before! Arrival at 12:19, 1 minute early.
Off into the Megahub i go!
Delta Air Lines
Booked Seat 21F
Actual Seat 24F
Dept Gate B11
Dept Time Scheduled 15:05
Actual Dept Time: 15:04
Dep Runway 9L
Arr Runway 9L
Arr gate Terminal 2 D8
Arr Time Gate 16:11
Load: 26/26J, 26/26Y+, 132/132Y
Ride the Train to Concourse B
Grab a quick chicken wrap
Off down to B11
Flight 1288 to FLL is at B12 right across. I decide to see if i can get on it... just as i queue up for the podium "This flight is overbooked by 8, looking for volunteers..." Ok forget that idea, it was another 75X anyways...
My boarding pass says Seat 21F on it. Economy Plus.
Boarding begins early at 14:35.
I'm in group 1, and im assuming everything is fine. Well when he scans my BP it spits out a new seat. 24F? Not economy plus... but this time I'm not gonna wait for him to do whatever and board whoever and hope there is still bin space. I just took the seat... it's not THAT long of a flight.
Get on to see a DL deadhead in my seat. GRRRRRR... I've already written emails over this to DL customer service, doubt I'll hear anything back though.
This flight is also oversold, by 3.
Next to me is all i can say Mr Stereotype American Football Male and his wife. Must watch the football game, must have a bud before the drink service, insists on telling his wife everything about the game even though she is trying to watch some drama show...
Anyways, departure is ontime, taxi out is quick, no long waits, only a DL MD90 and DC9-50 ahead of us out to 9L. Saw 2 Air Tran special colors (Falcons and Magic 717s) but everything else was snoozeville. Only "International" was an AC E-series...
Takeoff was strong and climb out steep.
Flight was a little choppy after passing over Valdosta GA, but smoothed out again after the start of decent.
Landing on 9L, flashing by all the dead ABX YS-11s and a line up waiting for departure of 2 Silver S340s, Nevada one, a plain SWA 73G and a pair of United 737s.
Taxi was very quick into Terminal 2 and gate D8.
Walked out into the humid 84*F of Florida. Tried to call my hotel to get the shuttle, could barely understand the woman on the line but she said Bus coming now quite clearly. So i went out to the hotel shuttle area, and waited... and waited... and waited... 45 minutes later my bus drives right by without stopping! I payed for a cab...
Off on the Ruby Princess to Princess Cays, Bahamas; St Maarten (yes i went to Maho ; St Thomas; Grand Turk; got Married...
Getting off a cruise ship and to FLL meant we got there at 11:15for our 14:05 flight... lots of time to spend doing... what?
I had a nap (bad move). Not much to see in T1... Frontier and SWA, pattern is off of 9L and can't really see it due to construction sheeting blocking a bunch of windows. Not to mention the serious lack of seating in this terminal. We can't wait near B3, much less in the B3 area, it's packed and then some. We end up sitting at B11 after Frontier leaves until 14:00.
14:05 comes and goes, there is no plane at B3, delayed inbound from MSY.
Finally arrives at 14:15, takes forever to offload (forever in WN terms), there are 21 passengers requiring assistance, mostly wheelchairs no less!
Boarding is typically WN...
Took seats 11A/B/C between the 3 of us (2 more were further forward). There is no seat 10A so i have a mile of legroom at the exit hatch
So we got a singing FA...
A dancing FA
and a boring FA
Overcast below us until we are almost over lake Erie on approach. Landing in BUF just after dark.
Parking Shuttles at BUF are chaos, manage to take our bags onto a bus that couldn't take the 5 of us and then tried to leave without us and with our bags and ditto for 3 other groups. Yelling match ensues, driver basically forces everyone to get off, lets on people whos bags are on and sorts it out, all to about 50 people screaming at him. Supervisor finally comes but doesn't help matters, and to make things even worse the next bus for that lot arrives, unloads and goes off duty! BUF really got a black mark that day in my eyes.
Anyways... Drive back to Canuckistan and all is well. No problems at the Rainbow Bridge. Home at 20:45.
[Edited 2012-11-29 14:14:31]
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.