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ATL-SAN First Class Roundtrip On DL (some Pics)  
User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 8059 times:

Unlike my first trip report where I apologized for not having any pictures I now have to apologize for the crappy quality of my camera phone that I used. I left my digital camera at home on this trip unfortunately. And I also have to admit I slept some on the flight outbound so there are no pics of that flight. I'll do better next time with the pics.

I had to fly out to Southern California for a Cisco training class and chose to fly into SAN because I have some good friends there and wanted to visit them. He is a Navy pilot on the SH-60 Seahawk but unfortunately they don't let the everyday civilian have a flight. Nevermind the fact I have a higher security clearance than he does. I guess I "don't need to know." I also planned to catch some sporting events in SoCal since I would be in class and wouldn't have any work responsibilities that week in the evening. I bought my tickets a few weeks ahead of time and given the nature of my business I purchased changeable/refundable tickets that provided me an automatic upgrade to First Class. I got up at what I like to call "the buttcrack of dawn" and left my house early Sunday morning and made my way down to ATL for my 8:30ish flight to SAN.

Outbound Flight on 09/25/2005
DL 1017
Lv ATL 0823
Ar SAN 0949
Seat 3F

ATL was what I considered busy on a Sunday morning. Since I had no luggage to check I went to the kiosks and checked myself in. I then made my way to the premium security line and had to ask some folks standing in the way to please move along or get out of the line as they were blocking both lines with their luggage and bodies. I am amazed at the amount of people that will go to the premium line, read the sign stating what it is, and then get upset when they are turned away but I digress. I got to the x-ray machines and got ready to go through. I love the way TSA now "suggests" you take off your shoes. I intentionally wear tennis shows when traveling to avoid the metal in my dress shoes but I guess that doesn't matter anymore. Again, looking for the weapon and not the terrorist but then I am not in charge of national policy so who cares. Security took just a couple of minutes despite the crowds and I made my way to the A concourse for my flight.

I didn't have any need to go to the Crown Room before my flight so I made my way slowly to the gate. They had already started boarding Medallion members so I hopped in line and got on the plane and found my way to my seat. No sooner had I sat down then a stewardess asked what I would like to drink. I asked for OJ without the normal ice cubes that they insist on giving you. The interiors of the 767-300s are starting to show their age. Maybe time for a refit but given bankruptcy I doubt that will be happening soon. I had one more before takeoff but otherwise got situated and started reading my book and listening to my iPod. The doors were closed right on time and we backed away from the gate 2 minutes late judging by the reader board by the gate outside. When I left the house it was still dark but clear. As we taxied I noticed that while the sun had come up we also had some of the remnants of Hurricane Rita passing through. Taxiing only took a few minutes and we were soon on 8R for takeoff. We were in the clouds within a few hundred feet off the ground but cleared those pretty quickly.

I read for a while and had one more OJ before they started the meal service where I had yet another OJ (see a pattern here?) The meal consisted of an egg concoction that was more scrambled than an omelet, sliced fruit, and milk. Not bad but nothing to write home about. One of Delta's cost cutting is now you no longer get a cloth placemat or napkin. The placemat is a paper one with a blue plaid pattern to it. The napkin looks like a long sheet of paper towels from the kitchen. They also have gotten rid of all the metal silverware and gone to plastic. Drinks are also served in clear plastic cups now even after takeoff. While I understand the need to cutback for costs it is still disappointing to see the decline in quality, especially when paying $1000 for the ticket.

After breakfast I decided to catch some sleep since the idea of watching "Herbie: Fully Loaded" was not high on my agenda. I woke up over western Arizona with about 45 minutes left in the flight. We flew south of the Salton Sea and I was amazed that so much of our vegetables come from that area. It doesn't seem that big to feed almost all of the US but I guess it is. The approach was easy enough flying just to the south of Mount Miguel (Let me out here please as my friends live close by in Chula Vista) and with a few slight banks before final into runway 27. We landed within a few minutes of our scheduled time and taxied quickly to the gate. After getting off the plane I stopped by the Crown Room to make a head stop and put in my contacts. The CRC is small compared to the big clubs at the hubs but still nice with views of the ramp area. While the furniture and carpet matches all the older CRCs it has much less wear and tear than the bigger clubs. Perhaps it is time for Delta to consider revamping some of the clubs but I realize money is tight in bankruptcy.

I made my way out of the terminal in a couple of minutes and took the shuttle to get my rental car. Total time from gate to shuttle bus (minus the CRC stop) is 5 minutes which is quite nice. I was quite surprised to see my car had been upgraded to a convertible. Given the wonderful weather all week it was a very nice touch. After spending the day with my friends I made my way up to Irvine for the week. I followed the Pacific Coast Highway from La Jolla up to Camp Pendleton and then took the I-5 from there. I really suggest that you all make that drive up the coast (don't just stop in LA but keep going) if you ever get the chance.

Tuesday night I drove up to Los Angeles and went to a LA Dodgers game against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Although Dodger Stadium was built in 1962 it is still in good shape. I found it neat how they built it into the side of Chavez Ravine so the highest seats in the house are right at ground level. I sat in the lower section along the first base line and had a good time eating Dodger dogs and soft pretzels. Since the Dodgers had been eliminated from the playoffs at that point the game itself was kind of dull but the atmosphere was great.

Good old Dodger Stadium lower level seating


Wednesday night I went to the Arrowhead Pond to see the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim take on the Vancouver Canucks. The Pond is intimate compared to some of the monster hockey arenas being built now. The amenities that are standard in arenas today aren't at this one but it is still comfortable and clean. I sat in the Club level which gave great views of the ice. The Ducks lost 3-1 and one day I may actually go to an NHL game where the home team wins. I must be bad luck.

Oh look...I went to a fight and a hockey game broke out!


Thursday was the end of training so I made my way back down the coast to San Diego. Although I was within a rock throw to John Wayne I departed from SAN so I wouldn't have to drive back up the coast after the Padres game that night. My friend and I went to the Padres game against the San Francisco Giants and had a good time. PETCO Park is in its second year and is ok for a new stadium. While comfortable the retro look and feel that is so pervasive in MLB stadiums these days wasn't really there. Maybe that is part of the Southern California way of life but I find Camden Yards, Turner Field (my hometown Braves!), and Jacob's Field have more to offer. We sat in the Club level here as well but the food was no different than the rest of the stadium. The Padres had clinched the NL West the night before so they played some of their lesser players and minor league prospects and the game went into the 11 inning. While I had wanted to see them clinch the division while I was there they instead were playing for a winning record. When they won the game they all ran out onto the field and celebrated being 1 game above .500 which made me chuckle. I guess I have just gotten spoiled in Atlanta with 14 Division titles straight followed by a flameout in the Divisional series.

We're not losers! We're 1 game above .500 and going to the playoffs!


Inbound FLight on 09/30/2005
DL 228
Lv SAN 0905
Ar ATL 1621
Seat 3A

I got up early again to make this flight and was out of my friends' house at 0645 for the drive into the city. I turned in the rental car and took the shuttle bus to the terminal. The lines were long at the counter but luckily the Medallion/First Class line was empty. I stood there for a few minutes and when I realized that they would be helping the couple in front of me for a while I slipped in to use a kiosk to check in. The Delta counter is right next to the security line which was wrapped up and down the bridge to the parking lot a couple of times. The premium line had a family in it who was trying to get their tickets out and babies ready so I cut in front of them, took my shoes off, and went through the line. I bought a bobblehead doll at the Dodgers game and that caused me to have a bagcheck. No big deal and only took a few extra minutes. I made my way to the Crown Room and had an OJ (again with the OJ! I must have a drinking problem.), a granola bar, and a banana. I was in the CRC for a few minutes and then started wandering down the concourse to gate 39. I stopped at a gift shop to get a paper and noticed a bobblehead of Gov. Schwarzenegger (sic?) that was called "The Governator" but the girl running the shop had no idea what was going on and it took her 5 minutes to ring up a guy with a pack of gum and paper. I put my stuff down and left for the plane.

The plane home was a 767-200 which was really showing its age inside. The seatback in front of was a little ragged and the seat in front of the guy next to me was completely separating away from the seat where you could see plastic and metal. The one thing I do like about the -200 is the tray table is in the seatback instead of the armrest. Just more roomy in my opinion. I was in the process of getting my bag into the overead when the stewardess asked me what I would like to drink. I asked for a Diet Coke and had it within a minute. I made myself comfortable and settled in for the flight home.

The ramp at SAN. The MD-90 is going to SLC.


They closed the door on time and we backed away and taxied for takeoff. We made our way quickly to runway 27 and although there were some WN flights landing and taking off as we taxied we didn't have to wait and made the turn onto the active and took off. We made a slight right turn after takeoff and flew over Mission Bay. The fog had not burned off yet so the ocean couldn't be seen right then. We made some lefthand turns and flew back over Point Loma, Fort Rosecrans, and then over NAS North Island somewhat parallel to the runway.

Takeoff from SAN


Point Loma, the city, and fog over the ocean


NAS North Island and SAN. Look for the USS Reagan


We continued to climb out and flew south of the Salton Sea again and could see the inbound planes to SAN to the north of us at a lower altitude. A couple of WN planes and what might have been a B6.

The Salton Sea


Not too long after takeoff the stewardesses made the rounds again and I got another Diet Coke. The meal service started maybe 5 minutes later. The menu today consisted of grilled chicken, sweet potatoes, and collard greens. It also included a salad and a lemon cheesecake concoction.

Mmmm...lunch!


The chicken was pretty bland but the greens and sweet potatoes were good. I was surprised to see such a meal on a plane as collard greens aren't a commonly eaten item outside of the Deep South. Perhaps it was a tribute to Delta's southern heritage but I doubt it. The salad was simply that, lettuce, celery and tomato slices. The lemon cheesecake was pretty good. The same paper napkin and placemat was standard issue for this flight as well.

I made a bathroom run and got another Diet Coke before they started the movie which was Mr. and Mrs. Smith. Angelina Jolie is smoking hot from the neck down but does nothing for me from the neck up. I just don't find her attractive but that is another topic altogether. The movie wasn't that great so I continued to listen but started reading my book again. We continued our progress across the southern US with no turbulence and started our descent around Montgomery. We ended up in a holding pattern somewhere along the line for a few spins and then made our final approach to runway 9R. We passed the international concourse on the way to B but other than the normal DL 767-300ERs and a few 777s there wasn't anything glamorous at the gates there. We pulled into B27 within a few minutes of landing and got off the plane with no issues. I made my way to my car in about 20 minutes and headed home from there with no issues since I was going against the flow of evening rush hour traffic.

Landing at ATL


B Concourse at ATL. Wavy Gravy as far as the eye can see.



Outbound Flight Rankings
Checkin: 10/10 (easy peasy lemon squeezy)
Boarding: 9/10 (a little crowded around the gate door as usual)
Pre-flight Service: 10/10 (2 drinks, not too shabby)
Meal Service: 6/10 (not bad but I have had better on DL before)
In-flight Service: 7/10 (not bad but could still be so much better)
Landing: 10/10 (we didn't crash so always a good landing)
Airport ease of use: 10/10 (nice and compact unlike back home in ATL)
Access to city: 7/10 (No direct connection to the Interstate)

Los Angeles Dodgers Game
Atmosphere: 8/10 (playoff elimination kills the fun)
Stadium: 8/10 (showing its age but still a jewel)
Food: 8/10 (Dodger Dogs and pretzels were good)
Ease of Access: 8/10 (Other than normal crappy LA traffic not bad to get in and out of)

Anaheim Ducks Game
Atmosphere: 5/10 (preseason hockey and a small crowd)
Arena: 5/10 (lacks the amenities of the newer arenas)
Food: 7/10 (hamburger was ok, fries were great, pretzel was good but I expected better in the Club level)
Ease of Access: 9/10 (Crappy Orange County traffic on the I-5 but quick access in/out plus close parking to the arena)

San Diego Padres Game
Atmosphere: 7/10 (playoffs already clinched but playing for winning record plus extra innings)
Stadium: 7/10 (just not up to par with the newer stadiums for ammenities and features)
Food: 7/10 (hamburger was ok, fries were great, pretzel was good ut I expected better in the Club level)
Ease of Access: 7/10 (downtown San Diego with no lot right at the stadium but still not bad given rush hour traffic)

Inbound Flight Rankings
Checkin: 10/10 (easy peasy lemon squeezy)
Boarding: 9/10 (a little crowded around the gate door as usual)
Pre-flight Service: 9/10 (Only 1 drink this time)
Meal Service: 6/10 (not bad but I have had better on DL before)
In-flight Service: 7/10 (not bad but could still be so much better)
Landing: 10/10 (we didn't crash so always a good landing)
Airport ease of use: 8/10 (ATL is still a long walk no matter where you land or park your car)
Access to city: 10/10 (I was home in 45 minutes despite the ongoing rush hour)


"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
16 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineS12PPL From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 7741 times:

Quoting DeltaGator (Thread starter):
I then made my way to the premium security line and had to ask some folks standing in the way to please move along or get out of the line as they were blocking both lines with their luggage and bodies. I am amazed at the amount of people that will go to the premium line, read the sign stating what it is, and then get upset when they are turned away but I digress.

All I'm gonna say is: Way to sound snobby.


User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 2, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day ago) and read 7654 times:

Quoting S12PPL (Reply 1):
All I'm gonna say is: Way to sound snobby.

What I probably should have said was they stop and read the large sign stating that the line is for premium customers, they continue on their way, and then get upset and make a scene when they get to the front and are turned away because they don't meet the requirements they just read. I wasn't trying to sound snobby but I can see how it came off that way.



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently offlineIslipWN From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 7596 times:

Nice trip report!!! Glad to see you had someting other than OJ on the way home!

Quoting DeltaGator (Thread starter):
I asked for a Diet Coke



Quoting DeltaGator (Thread starter):
I got another Diet Coke

Joe


User currently offlineS12PPL From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 7582 times:

Intentional or not, you still seemed to have that attitude made so famous by people that fly first class on a regular basis. Just felt like you were acting better than the rest, just because ou sit a few rows in front of others.

User currently offlineCubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 23224 posts, RR: 20
Reply 5, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 7529 times:

Quoting S12PPL (Reply 4):
Intentional or not, you still seemed to have that attitude made so famous by people that fly first class on a regular basis. Just felt like you were acting better than the rest, just because ou sit a few rows in front of others.

If you fly first, you provide more revenue to the airline than Joe Blow (either because you fly enough to be elite or because, as this gent did, you've bought a full fare ticket). That entitles you to privleges. Joe Blow who is flying to ORD for $148 is not, and should not be, entitled to the same privleges.



I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
User currently offlineS12PPL From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 7516 times:

So Joe Blow should be treated like dirt...gotcha. Thanks for clearing that up for me.

User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 7, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 7462 times:

Quoting S12PPL (Reply 4):
Intentional or not, you still seemed to have that attitude made so famous by people that fly first class on a regular basis. Just felt like you were acting better than the rest, just because ou sit a few rows in front of others.

I'm sorry if I gave that impression. Believe me when I say that I never think I am better than anyone else. I spend a fair amount of time away from home and I like to have the ability to get through security quickly, be able to change my ticket without penalty, have a decent seat, and get back home at the end of a long week. That's all. I asked them to move along as they were standing in the middle of both lines where no one could pass. The rest of it was a comment that I wish I hadn't included now.

Quoting S12PPL (Reply 6):
So Joe Blow should be treated like dirt...gotcha. Thanks for clearing that up for me.

I don't believe that is what he was going for. I continue to fly Delta because they take pretty good care of me. Things like a quick security line are one of those perks to keep me spending my money with them.



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently offlineJonnyGT From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 242 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 7367 times:

Were those shots taken with a 35mm or a digital camera? Either way, there is something seriously wrong with the calibration/focus of your camera.

User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 9, posted (9 years 1 month 4 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 7357 times:

Quoting JonnyGT (Reply 8):
Were those shots taken with a 35mm or a digital camera? Either way, there is something seriously wrong with the calibration/focus of your camera.

Unfortunately I left my digital camera at home on this trip. I took them from my camera phone which has shown it is perfectly worthless. I think the lens was dirty and I didn't have a Q-Tip handy to clean it. I have trips scheduled for the next few weeks and I'll make sure I have the good camera.



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently offlineCubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 23224 posts, RR: 20
Reply 10, posted (9 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 7236 times:

Quoting S12PPL (Reply 6):
So Joe Blow should be treated like dirt...gotcha. Thanks for clearing that up for me.

Joe Blow (why did I pick that name) is not entitled to the same privleges as DLGator is. He is, though, entitled to the excellent customer service he'll receive from 95% or more of DL employees and contractors worldwide.



I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
User currently offlineSan747 From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 4952 posts, RR: 12
Reply 11, posted (9 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 7204 times:

That was one steep takeoff from SAN, I must say!!


Scotty doesn't know...
User currently offlineS12PPL From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (9 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 7127 times:

I'm not saying Joe Blow is paying for the same services as Mr. First Class. I'm saying Joe Blow doesn't deserve to be treated like crap because you feel superior. Just because you have 10 million dollars doesn't mean that you get to treat everyone you come accross with less money than you like a sack of s**t. I deserve to be treated with the same ammount of respect as you do. Even if you DO pay more for a ticket than me.

User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 13, posted (9 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 7063 times:

Quoting S12PPL (Reply 12):
I'm not saying Joe Blow is paying for the same services as Mr. First Class. I'm saying Joe Blow doesn't deserve to be treated like crap because you feel superior. Just because you have 10 million dollars doesn't mean that you get to treat everyone you come accross with less money than you like a sack of s**t. I deserve to be treated with the same ammount of respect as you do. Even if you DO pay more for a ticket than me.

Ok, enough. This was meant to be a trip report and you have turned it into a rich vs. poor discussion. I am not rich by any means. I make good money but I could not afford those tickets on my own. I fly for business and I like to have the ability to spend less time at the airport. I do not treat people like s**t as you put it. Treating them that way would have been me yelling at them to "get the f**k out of my way you proletarian piece of crap! I do not need to be exposed to you and the other unwashed masses!"

They were in the way and not moving, taking up both lines, and they didn't have the requirements to be in that line since they were discussing amongst themselves that the line was first and elite members only. I asked them to move so I could get through. I do my best on a daily basis to treat everyone with respect and dignity. While I am not perfect at it I try my best. Your class warfare diatribe is old and tired and doesn't belong on this message board.



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently offlineCubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 23224 posts, RR: 20
Reply 14, posted (9 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 7058 times:

Quoting S12PPL (Reply 12):
I'm saying Joe Blow doesn't deserve to be treated like crap because you feel superior. Just because you have 10 million dollars doesn't mean that you get to treat everyone you come accross with less money than you like a sack of s**t.

We're arguing over a premium security line. I'm not entitled to use them as I'm only silver (on NW, but it's the same for DL). I have no problem with it. Why should anyone else?



I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
User currently offlineFlyBoy84 From United States of America, joined May 2005, 384 posts, RR: 4
Reply 15, posted (9 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 7043 times:

Quoting DeltaGator (Thread starter):
I then made my way to the premium security line and had to ask some folks standing in the way to please move along or get out of the line as they were blocking both lines with their luggage and bodies. I am amazed at the amount of people that will go to the premium line, read the sign stating what it is, and then get upset when they are turned away but I digress.



Quoting S12PPL (Reply 1):
All I'm gonna say is: Way to sound snobby.

And all I'm gonna' say is people will go out of their way to avoid having to wait their turn in line. If you read a sign saying "Premium" or "First Class" and you know you're seated in Row 30, don't get in the line! Most of the time, it has less to do with reading and comprehension than with patience. If you're flying steerage, expect the lines to be longer and plan accordingly. Here's a thought, learn to use the kiosks or check in online from home.

Here's a newsflash, I always fly coach so call me a snob if you must  Yeah sure

Anyway, nice report! Collard greens inflight  Wow! ? Wow!


User currently offlineN200WN From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 784 posts, RR: 6
Reply 16, posted (9 years 1 month 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 6617 times:

I enjoyed reading your trip report DeltaGator.

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