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Posts: 268
Joined: Fri Jul 27, 2001 1:47 am

YYZ > DCA > PIT > STL On US Express - Thanks Pit!

Mon Oct 23, 2006 7:27 am

I have a conference in St. Louis so decide to try to get the cheapest flight I can, as well as get some points. So my flight today is YYZ > DCA > PIT > STL all on US Airways, all regional jets.

From Photos for ar...

My tickets.

Flight 1: YYZ > DCA - US3921 o/b US Express - Air Wisconsin
Aircraft: CRJ200 N411ZW
Seat: 3F
Departure gate: Terminal 3, Gate B7
Load: 98%
Dep: On-time
Arr: Early (15 min)

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Photo © John Davies - CYOW Airport Watch

As I have never flown out of T3 to the USA, I have no real idea on how busy it will be so I decide to be a bit early. Arrived around 9:15 from downtown in my trusty Hertz Hyundai (!?) to no line up for check in. 4 minutes later my bags are checked in and I am in the short line up for US Customs and Immigration. 5 minutes after that (and a short but pleasant conversation with the Immigration agent) I am drinking my coffee wishing that US Airways would move over to T1 so I could enjoy the MLL.

From Photos for ar...

My inflight meal - on the ground.

Of course because there in no line up I am stuck eating my own version of breakfast while watching the various American Airlines flights depart.

From Photos for ar...

From Photos for ar...

From Photos for ar...

Departures and arrivals from T3.

Take off and the flight was very basic, one drink service (non-alcoholic) - your basic up and down. Cloudy all the way until we just north of Baltamore, it then cleared up. Flew directly over BWI.

From Photos for ar...


Did a visual landing on 33 early -- 12:35 -- but had to wait nearly 10 minutes to get guided into the parking area. Took the bus to the terminal basically on-time. Went right up to the US Airways Club, bought a Sam Adams *sighs - America* and ate some pretsels -- no other food avaliable  Sad

From Photos for ar...

From Photos for ar...

From 35A.

Walk over to the gate -- Gate 35A seems a special version of hell at DCA. People everywhere waiting for their flight to be called. The busses have to do 3 point turns to get out !!!!

Finally our flight is called at 2:05 -- it was supposed to leave at 1:51. On the second bus I go...

Flight 2: DCA > PIT - US3659 o/b US Express - Air Wisconsin
Aircraft: CRJ200 N***ZW
Seat: 3F
Departure gate: 35A (bus)
Load: 98%
Dep: 30+ min late
Arr: 40 min. late

From Photos for ar...

Finally we are off from Rwy. 1. Very short basic flight. As we only had 30 some minutes in the air, no service at all. The seatbelt sign did not even get turned off. My seatmate was also going on to STL, so we mostly talked about if we, or just our luggage, would miss the connection.

Arrived on 28L and did a quick taxi to our gate. Boy is PIT a ghost town! Of course this was OK as the STL flight was 4 gates over, and they were expecting us. I do wish I had time to grab a sandwich, I hadnt eaten any lunch at DCA. We had to wait for some paperwork before we pushed back (and my luggage?)

Just a note to say that everyone I met in the 10 minutes I was in PIT were very friendly. The gate agents directing me to the flight, the pilot eating the darn good smelling sandwich at the gate letting us know it will be open for us in a second, to the ramper who went to see about my bag. Very good!

Flight 3: PIT > STL - US3545 o/b US Express - Trans States Airlines
Aircraft: ERJ145 N805HK
Seat: 3A
Departure gate: A7
Load: 95%
Dep: 5 min. late (for my luggage?)
Arr: on-time.

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Photo © Jason Bisson

We departed on 28R

First thing I have to say is that I like seat 3A in the ERJ Lots of room, though a luggage rack above would be nice. Nice seat pitch as well. Basic drink service with some yummy pretszels (anything at this moment is yummy -- I am HUNGRY!). The crew was very friendly on this flight.

From Photos for ar...

One thing about this aircraft -- it is NOISEY. I can barely hear my iPod over the roar -- and forget about messages from the cockpit. It actually seemed quieter as I walked back a bit (to the loo). Speaking of the loo, um, Trans West, do a better job of cleaning it. Lets just say I was glad to be standing up *grins*.

We landed on-time on STL on Rwy. 24. With a quick taxi to the gate. We were quickly off the gate, and down to luggage claim. I am scoping out where US Airways baggage office is as the bags start coming off the belt. My bag is there!

Thanks Pittsburg! You did my baggage switch in less than 10 mintutes. I definatly would change planes there again -- next time I want to see more!

The flights? Well it was the first time I have been on US regional flight since 9/11, and wow. No service really at all. But for the price (under 200 taxes in) I did not expect much.

I am flying back on Air Canada Jazz to YYZ, it will be interesting to compare and contrast a Jazz CRJ vs a US CRJ.
Posts: 909
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2003 9:53 am

YYZ > DCA > PIT > STL On US Express - Thanks Pit!

Tue Oct 24, 2006 8:35 am

Nice report. i greatly prefer the ERJ than the CRJ. I love US/US express.
Posts: 45
Joined: Sun Sep 24, 2006 1:46 am

RE: YYZ > DCA > PIT > STL On US Express - Thanks Pit!

Wed Oct 25, 2006 7:52 am

Nice report and pics. I fly out of Pittsburgh quite a bit. It has become a ghost town since US Airways downgraded it from a hub and reduced their flights by half. It is a pity too since it is an easy airport to get in and out and around. In the 1990's it was a very nice airport to connect through and was always busy. You are right, the people who work in Pittsburgh are great.

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