This is my first trip report.
I just spent 3 weeks in the USA visiting friends and family in Pennsylvania. I flew out to San Francisco to visit a friend for a week. So here it is.....
Date: December 10, 2005
Departure Gate: E3
Scheduled/Actual Departure: 08:40EST/08:40EST
Scheduled/Actual Arrival: 11:02EST/10:45EST
I arrive at the DL
check-in counter in Terminal E at about 7:30. There wasn't too much going on so I was checked in fairly quickly by the DL
staff. The guy who checked me in noticed my ticket had a price in Euros and asked me about it. I told him I lived in Germany and bought the ticket through my company's travel agent, etc etc. Considering it was 7:30 in the morning he was nice and perky and chatted me up while taging my suitcase. He gave me my boarding pass and wished me a nice flight.
Terminal E is very boring as far as food, shops, etc goes so I decided to head down to the Market Place between Terminals B & C. I showed the TSA
woman my boarding pass and ID
. She noticed I was leaving from Terminal 3 and wanted to know why I wanted to go through security here. I told her I wanted to go shopping before my flight. She took my boarding pass and ID
to her supervisor who came over and asked "why do you want to go shopping this early in the morning?" A very smart remark was on the tip of my tongue but I remained civil and told him I needed to buy some stamps to send a few Christmas cards and the only place to buy stamps was down towards Terminal A. He mumbled something I didn't understand and motioned me towards the screening area. Surprisingly this went quickly, didn't have to remove shoes and the next guy was a little more polite as he "wanded" me. Bought my stamps and a bagel and headed back to Terminal E.
This is where PHL
really stinks. The terminals are not connected so If you want to wander around you have to go through up to 3 security areas. The screening area in Terminal 3 is really cramped and a total mess. There was a Chinese woman pre-screening boarding passes and IDs. No offense intended but her English was TERRIBLE! She kept repeating something which sounded like "Bo pa an Ids out plee"....Screening was uneventul. Again very happy I didn't have to take off my shoes.
I made my way down to E3
. Boarding had already started so I boarded right away. The FA
at the door was nice and greeted me with a real Southern "hi ya'll doing this fine day". She definitely belonged to the "experienced" group of FAs. The next FA
was a bit younger and had a nice smile as she greeted me too. The next FA
at the back was much younger but a real b*tch! I found my row and wanted to open the overhead compartment. She slammed it shut and said "it's closed for a reason......" I guess she meant it was full. I decided not to let her ruin my day so I put my carry-on in the next bin which was still open.
The plane had the usual 3x3 economy seating. Since it was probably the first flight of the day for the aircraft it was very clean with the usual DL
interior. The flight was about half full. I had the all three seats to myself.
We pushed back shortly before 08:40 and were second in line to take off. I don't know which runway we used but we took off heading west/southwest over the Delaware River.
I was pleasantly surprised to see this flight had inflight entertainment. The FAs came around handing out blankets and selling headphones. I had my own headphones so I used them. There was the usual music choices. There was no feature film instead DL
news, sit-coms and sports shown on overhead monitors. What made my day was the showing of Dr. Suess's "How the Grinch stole Chrismtas". Brought back memories from college with my roommates. During the flight the FAs offered the "infamous" DL
snack-box and beverages. I chose coffee and cheese crackers. Believe it or not the coffee tasted good. I was offered refills twice. The pilot came on and did his usual speech. Again another good ol' Southern boy. After the Grinch was over I read DL
's Skymall Magazine. Man, if I had the money I'd order everthing in that catalogue. I have no need for 99% of the stuff in it but it soooo tempting. Has anyone ever purchased something from it?
The announcement was made we would be landing in a few minutes. The FAs came around and gathered up our "service items". Why do airlines use that term??? They're gathering our trash....if that is too direct why not say "cups and napkins"?
Anyway we landed and made our way to our gate which was A12. Upon leaving the plane the pilot and FAs wished everyone a "might fine day in Atlanta". Gotta love those Southerners.....
Departure Gate: A12
Scheduled/Actual Departure: 1:50EST/2:05EST
Scheduled/Actual Arrival: 3:57PST/3:50/PST
I checked the overhead monitor and was pleased to see my gate remained A12. I had plenty of time to wander around. Bought a newspaper, some munchies and waited for the next flight.
Boarding started about 25 minutes prior to scheduled take off. DL
uses the Zone system which seems to work well. I was in Zone 4 so I was one of the last to board. The FAs in the front were friendly and directed me down the correct aisle. The plane was almost completely full this time. I found my row and went to open the overhead compartment when I was greeted with the following phrase..."like, don't even think about opening that bin, our stuff is there". I looked down and saw a fat, teenage girl with a really bad perm glaring up at me. Being twice her age I was not going to let her order me around. My response to her was "well guess what? I thinking about it so what do you say to that sweetheart". She just rolled her eyes and made that annoying tongue clicking sound teenage girls seem to do all so well. I put my bag in the opposite bin and took my seat. The middle seat was empty but the guy on the other end apparently heard my "conversation" with the girl and just laughed.
This was my first trip in a DL
767-400. Pitch seemed okay, moveable headrests and okay comfort. Inflight service was the same as on the other flight...snack box and beverages. Infight entertainment offered a featured film, "Sky High" and then the same TV
schedule as on my flight to ATL
. All in all an uneventfull flight. I'm one of those passengers that can't stay seated for more than an hour. So I made a few rounds up and down both aisles. The FAs were a mixed bunch of very young and very senior men and women. All were nice enough. I chatted with one in the rear galley for a bit. Soon it was time to get ready to land. The FAs made a last round to collect our "service items". Landing was fine and I made my way to baggage claim.
Question to all baggage handlers: why is my bag ALWAYS and I mean ALWAYS the last one to be loaded on the belt?????????
Date: December 14
Departure Gate: C42
Scheduled/Actual Departure: 11:40PST/11:55PST
Scheduled/Actual Arrival: 07:00EST/06:53EST
Arrived at the DL
check-in counter at 10:40. There was a woman having/causing problems and 3 or 4 DL
agents dealing with her leaving just one to process the others standing in line. Took me about 15 minutes to get checked in. The guy was nice enough but he kept looking over at the next desk to see what was going on with the woman and the other agents. I decided better not to ask.
Security here was even more disorganized than in PHL
's Terminal E. TSA
agents had people taking off shoes and then walking away with them while the wearer waited to be sent through the line. Some people were directed to other lines and then sent back...total mess. Nothing DL
can do about it I guess. Eventually made my way through the chaos and went to my gate. There is nothing to do at this time of night in this terminal. Very boring. I found a newspaper laying around so I read that to pass time.
When I booked this flight it was scheduled to be a B767-200. I was a bit ticked when I learned it was changed to a 757. I'm one of those "weirdos" that wants a double aisle aircraft for anthing more than 2 hours. I know I know its all a "mind" issue but that's how I feel.
Well boarding started about 11:45. It was a full flight not an empty seat in economy. The FAs were friendly and trying to accommodate all the carryon luggage. Unbelievable what people take with them. I found my seat and got as comfortable as one can get on a red-eye flight. The FAs came around with blankets so I took one and settled in for the night. Once again that all so "popular snack box" was handed out. The featured film on this flight was "Polar Express". The flight was fine and before I realized it we were getting ready to land in ATL
. It was still dark and very foggy this day and there was no ground in sight until the very last second before touch down. We taxied around a bit and parked at our gate, A10.
Date: December 15
Departure Gate: A11
Scheduled/Actual Departure: 7:55EST/7:55
Scheduled/Actual Arrival: 09:53EST/09:50EST
I was a bit worried about the short connection time in ATL
but was relieved to see my flight left from the next gate. I waited and boarding started about 15 minutes prior to departure. The flight was about 60% full.
The FAs were nice and friendly. I had an exit row seat so I could finally stretch my legs after the long flight from SFO
. There was no inflight entertainment on this flight but guess what was offered??? That's right the snack-box!!!! Not really so bad but a bit tiresome when you get 4 in such a short time span. However, the coffee was again very good. We landed in PHL
during a bit of sleet/rain but that didn't seem to cause any problems. I made my way to baggage claim and guess what?? My bag was the VERY LAST one to come out. I guess I should'nt complain, better last then lost, right?
Well that about wraps up my first trip report. I will do another one on my trans-Atlantic flights with AF
as soon as I get the pics developed. All in all I can say my flights with DL
were just fine. The DL
employees I encountered
were friendly and helpful, the aircraft clean and for the most part with comfortable seating. I will continue using DL
as my domestic airline whenever I'm back in the USA. To all DL
employees and airnetters a Happy New Year!!!