This is the second part of my Continental trip that I posted a few days ago.
The return trip would be from PHX-IAH-CLE-SYR. We arrived at PHX in
plenty of early only to be met a somewhat long check in line at the Continental counters. Using the automated check in and with some help from a pleasant CO person we made it through the line in about 20 minutes. While we were waiting in line a passenger and his family ahead of us had been refused boarding. The CO Supervisor claimed that this passenger had not allowed enough time to clear security. The passenger became quite irate and started yelling at the CO person. The passenger claimed that he was there in plenty of time but he had been held up in the waiting line. He kept yelling at the CO person and finally the CO person said that if he did not stop yelling he would get no help at all. The passenger and family along with the CO Supervisor went off somewhere and hopefully they resolved the problem. We made it through security and to the gate in plenty of time before boarding. The first part of the flight, PHX-IAH would be on a CO express ERJ-145. Scheduled flying time was 2 hours 36 minutes. After waiting in a long line of departing planes we finally left PHX. When we got to cruising altitude the pilot mentioned that the weather in Houston was great. He had just came from there on this same airplane. A light snack of a beverage and apple muffin was served by a polite but unsmiling flight attendant. A second round of beverages was served later in the flight. Still no smiles from the FA. We arrived at IAH about 10 minutes late and on the way out of the plane I thanked the FA for a nice flight. Still no smile! We had to get from
the B concourse to the E Concourse which was on the far side of this large airport. Being as this was my first time using IAH it took us about 20-25 minutes to get to our connecting gate. I did not think the signs indicating which way to the E gates were marked very well for a first time user such as myself. I had thought it would be a short walk from the B concourse to the train that would transport us over to the E Concourse. As it turned out it was quite a walk to reach the train! Then the train does not exactly go to the E concourse! It drops you off at the D and E Concourse stop. Then we had to walk some more to reach our gate at E-24. As we got to the gate they were calling the last group to board the airplane. We finally got on board and to our seats in row 9 of the 737-500 that would take us to CLE. Another person made it on just at the last minute who was sitting in front of us. He was quite upset as he said they did not allow him enough time to make his connection from the B concourse. He must have landed just after we did! Finally the flight got under way and we were in the Air shortly. We had gotten off a few minutes late but the pilot said we would make it up with a tail wind and should arrive in CLE on time. The scheduled flight time was around 3 hours. Shortly after reaching cruise altitude a beverage and snack were served. The fa’s on this flight were very courteous and friendly. Then about half way through the trip the FA announced that they had a Medical Emergency on board! She asked if there was a Doctor or any Medical professionals
on board to please ring their call button. Very shortly after a young guy in a few rows back rang his button. It turned out that he was Doctor doing his residency work. The medical problem was with an elderly person who was sitting a few rows across and in front of us. The FA’s got the Doctor what appeared to be an emergency kit to check out the ill person. She did not pass out and the Doctor remained with her the rest of the way to CLE. The FA then announced that she was requesting everyone on board to remain in their seats when we landed in CLE until they removed the ill person. When we arrived at the gate in CLE we were met by a Cleveland Airport Fire Department Fire Truck and Ambulance. Everybody remained in their seats until the medical personnel came on and removed the ill person.
On the way off the airplane I noticed the ill person was sitting in a wheel chair and answering questions for the EMT’s. She appeared to be ok! I think our flight might have gotten some priority in landing as we arrived quite early. We made it to our connecting gate for our flight to SYR with plenty of time to spare. The flight to SYR was scheduled to take 1 hour and 10 minutes on a CO Express ERJ-145. We left a few minutes early and in no time the male FA was serving us beverages and a snack. This FA was also very courteous and friendly. He even personalized the beverage service when he served them to you. He addressed everybody by a surname and last name which I thought was a nice touch of customer service. I noticed he had a passenger list he was using that was on his beverage cart. We arrived early at SYR, picked up our baggage and headed home. The weather was warm and muggy. In conclusion I must say that I enjoyed my first time of flying with Continental and Continental Express. The flight from PHX to IAH was a little long to be on a RJ. But I did not seem to mind it and I thought it was quite comfortable. I was not impressed with getting through IAH to my reach my connecting flight. Maybe it was me but I thought I should have been able to reach my connecting gate much sooner than I did. All in all I give Continental High marks and I look forward to flying with them again.