desertjets
Posts: 7564
Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2000 3:12 pm

Independence Air For Independence Day: SYR-IAD-SYR

Wed Jul 07, 2004 12:10 am

It was high time to get out of upstate New York for a trip down to DC to visit family for the holiday weekend. This is my first, of probably many, flights with Independence Air.

Friday July 2nd, 2004.
Independence Air 1547, Syracuse to Washington-Dulles.

As usual check-in and security at Hancock International was painless and quick. No lines at either place. Indy uses gate 20 on the north concourse at SYR, the former United Express gate.... in fact the jetway is still sporting United's color from the early 80's. The gate area itself was decorated with a giant ballon arrangement with the new Flyi logo.

My first impressions of the cabin were very good. While the seats are in a shockingly blue leather, the seats themselves are very comfortable. They are significantly more padded that your run of the mill CRJ seats.

My flight that afternoon was about 50 minutes in the air, with a westbound departure from Syracuse, heading soutwest towards Elmira, then direct to Dulles. In comparison to my return leg, the in-flight service was not as good. With roughly 25 passengers on board, Priscilla, seemed to be a little slow with the drink service. It seemed like she was just barely able to finish serving the cabin as we began the initial descent into Dulles. Other than that the service was fine and our flight attendent was friendly. Heck they even got us into Dulles a few minutes early. Cannot complain about that.



Monday July 5th, 2004
Independence Air flight 1556, Washington-Dulles to Syracuse.

I was dropped off at Dulles at 5:30pm for my 7:05pm departure to Syracuse. Though once I got to the gate area and settled in I began to sense that all was not going well. Numerous Flyi flights up and down the east coast were cancelled or delayed because of the thunderstorms flaring up all along the eastern seaboard. Flights to Boston, Chicago, Newark, and White Plains were significantly delayed. By 6:30 I got news that my flight to Syracuse would be delayed until at least 8:00pm, as the plane was inbound from Boston which was experiencing massive delays that evening. So given that I had a lot more time on my hands I decided to go walk the concourse to kill time. Needless to say I was very impressed with the B concourse. Nice and wide with high ceilings and large waiting areas and plenty of concessions. Too bad by 7pm it was pretty much a ghost town. The Virgin Atlantic flight had already boarded and the Air France flight had already arrived. Just a handful of Northwest DC-9s and a USAirways 737 were parked on the B concourse. After my stroll I had another half hour to kill, so I just parked my butt in the A2/A4 boarding area to wait for my flight.

We finally boarded around 8:15pm and left terra firma around 8:30pm. Steve was our flight attendent for this leg. He provided much better service than on my outbound flight. With a fuller plane he was able to quickly get all of us drinks and still had time for the refresher towel service before landing.


Overall I was generally pleased with the Independence Air experience. I am more excited about having genuienly low fares and frequent service though. But I found both the ground staff and in-flight crew on both ends to be warm, friendly, and excited about their new airline. During my delay at Dulles, the gate staff had regular, around every 15 minutes or so, updated on the status of the delayed flights. Certainly something that I appreciated.

In the future I plan to choose Independence Air when my travel plans permit.
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
 
Stretch 8
Posts: 2468
Joined: Fri May 28, 1999 4:00 am

RE: Independence Air For Independence Day: SYR-IAD-SYR

Wed Jul 07, 2004 12:25 am

Good report. As a resident of the Washington area, I have watched with interest the cheeky advert camgaign for the new IAir. I had thought about taking them to EWR for a day trip this week.

The problem for IAir is IAD, but only at certain times of the day. In the early morning or late afternoon, the place is quite dicked-up. Getting through security is a complete fiasco.

For a short flight to the NY area, the shuttle from DCA is much easier experience. But I will try IAir one of these days!
Maggs swings, it's a drive deep to left! The Tigers are going to the World Series!!!
 
nwa747-400
Posts: 1325
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2000 2:54 am

RE: Independence Air For Independence Day: SYR-IAD-SYR

Sat Jul 10, 2004 12:03 am

I think on IAD-SYR its a "beverage only" service. Meaning just a choice of drinks. No snack basket, no hot towels, and no mints due to the short flight time.
 
flyguy1
Posts: 1660
Joined: Wed Jun 23, 1999 9:45 am

RE: Independence Air For Independence Day: SYR-IAD-SYR

Sat Jul 10, 2004 9:41 am

desertjets
How is the ride on a CRJ?
727, L1011, MD80, A300, 777-200, 737-300, 737-700, 747-400, 757-200, 737-800, A320. E190, E135, 767-200, CRJ9
 
WidgetBoi
Posts: 1395
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2004 9:57 am

RE: Independence Air For Independence Day: SYR-IAD-SYR

Sat Jul 10, 2004 10:14 am

awesome report!!!

jeremy
 
GSPSPOT
Posts: 2171
Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2003 1:44 am

RE: Independence Air For Independence Day: SYR-IAD-SYR

Thu Jul 22, 2004 1:12 am

Well, hurray, then... Like I said in another thread, can't wait to try it for myself!
Finally made it to an airline mecca!
 
desertjets
Posts: 7564
Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2000 3:12 pm

RE: Independence Air For Independence Day: SYR-IAD-SYR

Thu Jul 22, 2004 4:40 am

The Independence Air CRJs are the nicest of the CRJs that I have been on... including ACA's planes flying for United and Mesa flying for America West.

The leather is this funny shade of bluish-purple, or purplish-blue... depending on your perspective. It definitely adds needed color and character to airline cabins that are normally a sea of gray and navy blue.
Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia

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