This report is very similar to my last report with WN.
737-700 N752SW (Old Colors)
Scheduled Departure 1:35PM
Scheduled Arrival 2:50PM
Actual Pushback 2:10PM
Arrival into gate 3:29PM
My group and I returned our rental car, and immediately proceded to check our bags. We already knew we were going to be in the A group again because we checked in online. For anyone who says they are worried about not getting a good seat on WN, just check in online your almost guaranteed an A seat. The only down fall might be is if your boarding a flight that has passengers continuing on to another destination.
The check in agent was satisfactory, but nothing special. We zipped through security and took the underground train to Concourse A. The weather looked like it was going to be getting bad outside which started me to think we would experience a delay and we did.
Just as I got to gate A1 there was a general announcement made that due to lightning all ramps would be closed so no planes could be serviced. I got to the crowded gate area, where one of the CSA's repeated the announcement. It was abotu 1PM at that time and our plane pulled up just as it started to storm. The poor 737 ended up shutting down and sitting on the tarmac for about 45 minutes.(This was also the case for another WN plane) At about 1:10 a severe storm came through. IT was horrible outside. I could barely see. This bad storm really appeared out of nowhere. It was a stinky situation but I understood it was not WN's fault. Alot of passengers were getting angry and bothering the poor CSA but he handled himself very well. I could see why they would get upset though because the storm passed at about 120PM and it got really sunny out again but the ramp stayed closed until 145PM. The customer service agent handled the situation really well. He never got rude with anyone and was very apologetic. The two WN agents constantly repeated what was going on every 5 minutes or so. It got a little annoying but I guess its good to update people. The gate area continued to get more crowded because there was supposed to be a flight to MCO leaving at 230. They did change that gate though to A5 which helped free up some space in the area. I feel that WN could use a better gate area at PIT but it wasn't that big of deal.
After the plane got towed(the plane shut down its engines for the 45 minute delay obviously to save fuel) into the gate at 1:46PM. The very frinedly agent again apologized and explained how we would be boarding about 2 minutes after the last passenger deplaned. We were also advised that this flgiht was full and that it would be greatly appreciated to keep small items under our seats not in the overhead bins.
I boarded in the A group and was greeted by one FA with a big smile. I was able to get my emergency exit seat again, this time over the left wing. A male FA explained the procedures again, and I complemented his airline and how I felt they really are dedicated. He was very happy with the comment and we ended up goign into aviation talk until he had to help some passengers with bags. He mentioned that WN might be going to assigned seating in a year or two. Has anyone else heard this? I told him that I personally didn't mind open seating and that I wouldn't want to see it go away. I originally thought it wouldn't work and that it would cause passengers to fight over seats but that wasn't the case on my outbound flight to PIT, or this flight to PHL which had a load factor of 100 percent. He also told me of some other airlines he flew and things he liked about them. He said he really enjoyed flying B6 from his home base into NYC to visit family. We also got onto the quick turn around topic. He smiled and said its a fun challenge. I asked him what some of the most popular routes were with their new service in RSW and he said that so many of the MCO-RSW flights are full! That was a big surprise to me. It was so nice to have a nice personable FA. Even when he was talking to me he also made efforts to greet people constantly as they walked down the aisle to their seats.
The plane got loaded up quickly and we pushed at 110PM. It took WN only 25 minutes to unload that 737 and load it up again with a full load and push back. I was very impressed. It is quite a sight to watch the rampers attack the plane. You can see true dedication with this airline. Just like my first leg the pilot went to start the engines as soon as we started moving. There was no time to waste since we were delayed. The captain and FA made constant apologies about the delay. We were also informed that we would be experiencing moderate turbulence due to those storms and that FA's would need to be seated. I understood this. Again WN made about 5 announcements throughout the flight apologizing. They do apologize alot!
After pushabck we proceded to 28L where we were number 4 for take off. As soon as we got up it was very rough. I felt bad for the poor B-1900 that had taken off before us. WE climbed to 10,000 where we cruised for a little, then made our way to 23,000 with plenty of bumps along the way. We hit a few bad air pockets that caused somepassengers to scream. The bumps didnt bother me, i kind of enjoy the rocking back and forth and the drops all in one that moderate turbulence gives you. After crusing for about 10 minutes the bumps stopped and we started to descend into PHL.
Descent was nothing special. We landed on 27L which I have never seen at PHL before. I have only seen 27R landings. Landing was smooth and we used most of the runway to slow down gently.T Once we landed is when the jokes began. After we got off the runway the one female FA said "folks we made it to PHL! "(alot of people clapped after this) As we were taxing for awhile she came back on and said this is why many of you only paid 29 dollars.... we fly you for 30 minutes then drive you for 30 minutes. That was very funny because it can be true at PHL sometimes! LOL The next thing she said was please remmeber to take all your belongings, but if you forget them don't worry all you will need to do when you get home is go to www.ebay.com and if you are the high bidder you can get it back! I thought that was great! As we neared the concourse we were reminded to stay seated and she then said "normally ladies and gentleman I would advise you to take extra care with opening the bins because objects may have shifted during flight, but this time folks they DID shift so be careful because we here at Southwest don't want anyone to get injured, and we definitely don't want to do all the paperwork!! Cute jokes that make this airline different from some of the others.
We pulled into the gate 40 minutes late and were thanked by the male FA that I had spoken to earlier as we left.
WN did a great job and I will definitely fly them again. I can't wait to fly B6 this weekend so I can compare WN, B6, and Song. In all reality for me though I think each airline has great individual qualities and what will determine who I fly is a matter of cheaper price and/or convenince.