It is that time of the year again for my yearly one nighter in DC.
I managed to take some pictures even though I was behind 2 panes of dirty glass most of the time.
Date: 02-Nov Return 03-Nov
Class: Business ($35 Upgrade each way)
Equipment: Boeing 717
Total price including upgrades: US $236
Checking in was effortless since I did not have any checkin luggage. Lines were nowhere to be seen at the Aitran counter. Since I was 2 hours earlier for my flight I decided to proceed to the gate area and grab some lunch.
My gate was C 20 and the concourse was packed to the Max as usual on a Wednesday. After lunch I proceeded to take a few photos from he windows. Amazingly the windows were a bit cleaner than normal.
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Gate Area, Web checking and help area
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Parked Airtrans at gate area
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Gate Area where I was sitting for a while
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This is a Spankin new Airtran B737-700?
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This is my ride
Boarding was hassle free and I proceeded to my seat without any delays. This was my first time flying Airtran, so I was a bit suprised to find the Business class seats kind of lame.
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They are not as comfortable as your usual business or first class seat you find in DL, NW,SAA or KLM. Truly you cannot compare a widebody business seat to a commuter business seat. Upon seating, the stewardess was kind enough to offer us a drink and I chose water. Pushback was prompt and within 20 minutes after boarding we were in the air.
My window was really scratched up I mean really bad, the outside part is full of lines a lot of lines. You cannot take a clear picture at this window.
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My Window, all scratched up
We were served drinks and no mention of a snack !!! That's why I had lunch earlier. Upon arrival to DC I was able to catch a glimpse of several heavy hitters on my way to the main terminal both on foot and while riding those 1950's all terrain IAD transfer busses.
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Virgin sitting at the gate, getting ready for evening to LHR
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First Evening 777 AF Leaving to CDG
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KLM A330 getting prep for AMS (this is my first time seeing a KLM A330)
Outside, I took the bus to the rental car company, got my car and left. Early next morning I tried beating the rush hour traffic to downtown Washington DC, managed to find parking, proceeded to finish my meeting and I was done by 1:45pm. I got really mad that the parking warden left me a $20 parking violation ticket, parking without permit. WTF ! I have to admit that Hertz has a great product when it comes to their NeverLost GPS thingie ! it is amazing !!!! I saved a lot on time and gas when I used NaverLost GPS navigation. Made my way back to IAD and dropped off the car, total charge for car $101 ( I chose the $40 full tank of gas option). Took the bus back to the terminal and proceeded to check in.
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AirTran (all) and Austrian (to vienna) Check-in
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Evening SAS to Copenhagen
It was around 4:00pm and my flight is on 8:30pm, what is a man to do with all this time ? for once I am starving (did not eat lunch), so I proceeded to the TGI Fridays and had lunch before boarding the monster to my gate.
After eating, I decided to wander around to different Gates taking photos and reading my newspaper.
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Virgin Atlantic - African Queen Arriving from LHR
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IAD construction, this is one HUGE hole !!!
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AF 777 to CDG getting ready
There was a rather odd sight at the end of the concourse, a Saudi Arabian B777-268/ER sitting at the remote stand. aftew a while the crew got in and started the APU, then there was a gate gourmet truck, after a few hrs it left and I did not see a single passenger board? does Saudi Arabian fly passengers to IAD or this was a VIP flight?
Photo © Daniel Wojdylo
Boarding @8:00pm was seamless as usual and the flight good. This particular 717 had the XM radio installed, so I spent most of my time fiddling with it.
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The XM was pretty interesting, you can listen to CNN and Fox news even NPR on it. They served snacks and drinks, cheap ass pretzels to be exact. Arrival in ATL was kind of bumpy, we sat on the intersection of 9L for about 20 minutes waiting for departures, several DL heavies, 737's, AF 777 and a DHL cargo.
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Arrival at gate
[Edited 2005-11-04 23:49:16]