Normally I fly from DTW using almost exclusively NWA, as you might expect. We took a cruise the week after Easter and the cruise line assigned the flights for us. I lost my notes about flight numbers and those details but I will give my overall impression.
We were booked on UA from DTW to FLL with a connection in ORD. Check in was a breeze in the old Smith Terminal using electonic check-in for boarding passes and to check in 8 bags for the 4 of us. An agent helped us and was very pleasant. Security line was short and soon we were on-board an UA 737-500. Taxiing out for take-off found us several planes back in the line and the captain shut off the right engine while we waited about 15 minutes. He announced this and told us we would know we were good to go once he spun up that engine. The short flight to ORD was uneventful and I was pleased to find UA serves Mountain Dew!
Haven't been through ORD in a long time. Our flight to FLL was from a different terminal (sorry, lost my notes) and we had to get there by walking under a tarmac. Thought that was pretty cool. While waiting to board, I walked up and down and pretty much could check out the whole UA fleet! 767s, 757s, 737s, A320s. I noticed that some UA planes had ETOPS stenciled on them. Never noticed that before. Our ride to Florida was a 757 (-200, I think). The plane was old and it's interior showed it. But the ride down was nice enough.
Having not been on UA in a long time, I was very impressed with the positive attitude from employees from the gate right on through to the FAs.
Coming home from the cruise was not a total bummer because I was looking forward to riding Song. FLL is a complete ZOO. We were directed to go down to the lower level to check our baggage at the luggage carasauls. A kind lady there helped us. Her uniform indicated that she wordked for "bags-r-us" or something like that. Then it was back upstairs for a long security line and then to our gate. Kids were hungry so I got in line to get them a burger. 30 minutes later the guy behind me pointed out that the cruise ships can feed thousands a fine meal without a wait but at the airport it takes 30 minutes to get a burger. Finally on-board. I loved the interior of Song's 757, especially thinking back to my UA 757. Leather seats, beautiful pastels and the all important IFE! I hadn't experienced that before and found it very entertaining.
The purchased food was pretty good and I like the idea that if you want something you can buy it and if not, not.
Had never been to JFK before either. Our connection to Delta connection was tight so the agent summonded a ride for us. Mr. Singh took us over to the next terminal. He put his arm around the passenger seat and in his hand were a few dollars. I thought about taking them but I guess that was my cue to cough up a tip!
The Delta Connection flight was boarding so we got in line, went through the gate and outside onto a school bus!! Jokes all around on how we were getting to DTW. Drove a ways to a parking lot of RJs. EMBs and CRJs. The driver got out and asked the captain if they were going to DTW, they weren't so onto the next plane.
Again, my first trip on a RJ. This was an EMB-145. I thought it was good fun!. Our climb out was south and then we looped east and then north over long island before turning west. Great views of Manhattan. Soda and pretzels were served and home we were. I was convinced the luggage wouldn't make it, but it did!