I'm new to Airlines.net and I thought why not give a trip report. Before you read it, I'll let you know, if it's not good, be kind, It's my first. Also, its from 2003 since I made this for a school report. Anyways, here it is.
CHECKING IN (Newark)
If you've been to Newark in the Continental terminal, then you know it can be pretty crazy. This time, it was one of the most craziest I've seen. Imagine, an early Saturday morning, during spring break on a rainy day...OMG!!! I'm a member of Continental's Elite membership. I went to my line in the BusinessFirst/Elite line at check in, somebody needs to better organize this. For some reason, I can't figure out, it takes everyone else in the airport such a long time to check in, me and my family...under five minutes. This is because about less then half of the people in that line were in first class and definitly not elite members. Finally we were checked in and could leave that mess.
Continental's newly remodeled terminals are pretty nice at Newark, very clean and FULL of stands, shops and places to eat and look out the windows.
When I looked out the window, I was sad to see the aircraft was only a Boeing 757-300. Other airlines use big, widebody aircrafts with room to move around and have personal inflight entertainment, but flying with Continental, you will learn they really don't use big airplanes that much in the U.S. unlike other airlines. Like usual, they boarded First class and elite passengers first, then they started from the back to the front of the plane. It ended up being a sold out flight and packed, again since it was a small plane on a long international route.
If you're flying out of Newark, forget ontime departures. Sure you'll leave the gate on time, but sit on the runway usually twenty to forty minutes before takeoff. One thing I love about Continental, is that it seems like all there take off and landings are real smooth, I don't know, maybe they great pilots but I never get nervous or sick like I do on other airlines.
IN THE AIR
After take off, the flight attendants got up and ready to serve the meals. Then TV screens flipped down from the ceiling above your head about every 3-4 rows. The movie "James Bond, Die Another Day" was shown, then a rerun of Home Improvement and Cheers and some other things were shown. In coach and your served breakfast, never expect much, that goes for any airline too. We were served some yogurt, fruit bars and I believe either a bagel or Cheerios with that, both meals also had a small muffin.
The comfort on Continental is standard, nothing special at all. One thing I wish they would do, for FF's like my self, is do like what United did, Economy Plus or add room in Coach like American. These airlines don't fly out of Newark much so I don't get to take advantages like that with Continental. Sitting in the middle of a small plane is not very pleasant on a long flight. The middle seat always has the lease seat width and you really can't put your arms or elbows down on the arm rest and you can't lean your head like the window or in the aisle.
When we got to Aruba, we landed and parked within minutes since Aruba is not a busy airport, no more than 20 flight a day.
If you havn't been to Aruba, you must go.
CHECKING IN (ARUBA)
Since this is a small airport, they don't have many counters for check in. So there were LONG lines, thankfully this time, the BusinessFirst line was empty, I walked up and checked in like that.
IN THE AIR
The return flight was pretty much just like the one going to Aruba. This time they should the movies "Made in Manhattan" and "Drumline", no TV shows. Also, the food they were serving almost made me sick. From years of flying, I've realized the food served is not 100% up to the airline. It's where and what the catering company is serving that day. Since it was company from Aruba, the food didn't look like it would be approved by the US gov't so I didn't eat it. We arrived at Newark that night and quickly arrived at the gate since it was night and not busy.
Getting luggage with Continental is good, most of the time, it's out there just as you arrive at the belts. I've only had about one or two luggage incidents with Continental. Plus they even paid for the repair needed after a small dent was made on the plane.