The videos can be found here:
Date: January 7th 2004
Class: Business Elite
This is so cool!!! Just found this picture… Can you see me in 3A???
Photo © Michael Carter
So I got of my flight my FLL-ATL flight at gate T1 and walked straight to the departure terminal which was really close. I went to the First Class check-in counter and there were 3 groups/couples/persons in front of me and 4 agents helping with check-in. Still I think I waited about 20 to 25 minutes in line because everybody had problems checking in. Then it was my turn. Check in was really fast. I had seat 3A which I choose when I booked my flight. I asked the male agent if he could check me in for the return flights from LAX-ATL and ATL-FLL. He was of course confused since I just got off a flight from FLL and was on my way to LAX. After explaining I was making a day trip he told me he could check me in after 20 minutes or I could go to the gate and check in there since it would take a couple of minutes to get to the gate. I proceeded to go to the gate.
Once at the gate I asked the agent if she could check me in. She was also confused. Her computer told me I could not check in there. Oh well… I went and sat down near a large window looking at the plane. Wow!!! I was really getting excited seeing the 777. I then proceeded to take some pictures and video. As I was about to take some pictures and video boarding was announced for Business Elite and Medallion members. I barely had taken some pictures so I quickly took some. By the time I had finished they were already boarding economy class passengers so I just stood at the back of the line.
At door 2L I was greeted by a flight attendant that checked all boarding passes. I proceeded to seat 3A. Since I boarded when boarding for Business Elite passengers had finished I had no place to store my hand bag, even though it was a small bag. So I just put it under the seat in front of me since there was so much room there.
As soon as I sat down a flight attendant asked me if I wanted to drink something. I asked for an orange juice. The leather/cloth combination seat was really nice. It was very comfortable, not soft nor hard. Just right. The amount of space between my seat and the seat in front of me was so huge. Enough to squeeze an economy seat in between. After about 20 minutes the door was closed and we pushed back. The in flight safety video was played. It was the same old one I had seen on many other Delta aircrafts. On the way to the runway I saw 2 of Delta’s retired MD-11’s. Takeoff was awesome. Those 2 monster engines came to life and we started to slowly roll down the runway. What struck me was that the engines made a noise unlike any other, kind of like a powerful air compressor pump (see video).
Once in the air and the seat belt sign was turned off we were given hot towels promptly. The guy next to me began wiping his “whole” seat; the PTV, the seat controls, the drink tray, the hand rest, the remote. It was kind of funny.
I then took a look at the IFE. They were going to start the movie service soon and since the IFE was not on demand I looked what movies they were going to have. There were a lot of movies of which only The Runaway Jury seemed interesting. Once the movies started it seemed that the channels didn’t correspond with what the in flight magazine said. So I had to look channel by channel for The Runaway Jury. After a couple of minutes I lost interest in it so I skipped it and went to play some games. There were many games but the games had to load for like a minute. I tried Black Jack, Poker, and Hang Man. I liked Hang Man so that’s what I played most of the flight. I then reclined my seat completely. As the seat was almost in the “sleep” position it seemed that the front of the bottom seat cushion kind of swiveled down a little bit so that the seat was easier to sleep in. The flight attendants then started to lay out the linens but lunch was not handed out for almost 15 minutes.
Lunch consisted of a decent portion of tomato soup with real chunks of tomato, a grilled chicken cheese sandwich, a slice of tomato and lettuce, and a small bag of snacks. That was it??? I was expecting something a little fancier and a little bit more food but then again it’s what you get in domestic first class (Delta’s anyway). I don’t particularly like soups because they are messy but the tomato soup was really good. Once I was finished with my soup I wiped my mouth and the paper napkin was all red from the soup. I than ate the grilled chicken cheese sandwich which was good.
After lunch I played some more with the IFE. Since the sun was shining full force through my windows the guy next to me asked me if I could close the shades which I did.
Halfway through the flight I got a headache so I took an Advil. It did not help. So I proceeded to take a nap but I couldn’t really fall asleep.
An hour or so before landing I asked one of the flight attendants if I could visit the cockpit and she asked the captain right away and told me it was OK.
After we landed I saw some International airlines; Singapore Airlines, China Airlines, Lufthansa, Korean Air, Varig, Aero Mexico. After the door was opened I waited for all Business Elite passengers to deplane and then asked the flight attendant if it was still OK to visit the cockpit. She told me most probably not but she still called the captain and it was OK. I went to the cockpit and saw the captain and first officer just grabbing their stuff together. The first officer was on his way out. The cockpit looked awesome. The glass screens looked so surreal. The glass screens looked so clear that it looked like it was painted on (sorry, I don’t know much about airplanes). On my way out of the cockpit I stumbled and almost fell because I forgot that the cockpit was a little higher than the rest of the cabin.
January 7th 2004
Class: Business Elite
I left the plane and went to go the front of the terminal since the terminal was small. I then walked back and proceeded to the gate and checked in for my flight back to ATL. The male agent that helped me definitely should learn some manners. He threw my boarding pass/ticket onto the counter, there was no hi, bye or have a nice flight, and “never” looked me into the eyes when he talked.
Boarding started 15 minutes later. When the gate agents announced they would board I went up immediately. I wanted to board immediately because I still had a headache.
As I entered the plane a flight attendant greeted me and gave me a second look as if she saw me before. It was the same flight attendant I had on my way to LAX. It seemed that the whole crew was the same except for the captain and first officer.
I went to me seat, 4A this time, and again put my handbag under the seat in front of me since I found it more convenient than putting it in the overhead bin.
After about 25 minutes the door was closed and we pushed back. There was some trouble with the video system. A couple of flight attendants fiddled with the system but they couldn’t get it to work so they did the safety demonstration live.
Once we were in the air and the seat belt signs were turned off a flight attendant started handing out hot towels. I wiped my hands and then started wiping my “whole” seat, just like to guy who sat next to me on the ATL-LAX leg. The seat I was in was in a bad shape. The seat control pad was wrinkled and it was very hard to push the seat controls. The seat controls did not respond always. Also the leg rest could not fully extend so my feet were sticking out at the end of the leg rest. It was kind of irritating because the end of the leg rest pushed against Achilles heel (I hope Achilles heel is right).
While a flight attendant brought my drink she asked me if I wasn’t on the previous flight. I told her yes and explained to her that I was on a day trip.
Right before the movie service was about to start the flight attendants began to fiddle with the video system again. After a couple of reboots the system finally worked and the movie service began. The flight attendants also began to lay the linens over our seat trays and shortly thereafter we were given dinner. It consisted of a small bowl of fresh salad, a piece of cold and dry bread, a piece of desert, and a bowl of pasta. The salad was fresh which was good. I didn’t touch the bread because it felt like a small stone. The desert was a piece of cake that was beyond sour. The pasta on the other hand was really good. The bowl of pasta was filled with pieces of chicken, peanuts and other nuts, and carrots. The pasta itself was filled with cheese. Even though I only ate the pasta I couldn’t finish it. It was definitely better than lunch.
After dinner I realized that my headache was gone. YAY! After dinner I watched the Runaway Jury for 20 minutes, looked at a “live” performance of Sarah McLachlan, watched a British comedy, and played some more Hang Man for the rest of the flight.
Blame the long wait for check in in ATL and the rude gate agent in LAX.
Overall I found the service to be very good. I was constantly asked if I wanted something to drink and if my glass was almost empty they asked me if I wanted some more. There was never an empty glass or anything used on the hand rest tray. The flight attendant always smiled.
The food was just OK, not bad, not good, not great, nor excellent. I mean it was just regular (Delta) domestic first class food.
The IFE was also good even though it wasn’t on demand. It had enough entertaining games and there were enough movie channels. The screen was a little small though.
The next best thing would be a lie flat bed, which Business Elite doesn’t have. The seat is very wide, comfortable, the seat pitch is amazing, and the seat is close to a lie flat bed. Remember, this was a US domestic flight.
Seat 4A wasn’t in good shape, the defective leg rest and the non responsive seat controls. Also in Seat 3A the PTV was a little loose. But the aircraft looked like new. The cabin and toilets were very clean.
Here is a short video of my FLL-ATL-FLL flights: