- Delta DL 2083 | TPA-ATL | Boeing 757-200
- Delta DL 439 | ATL-SXM | Boeing 737-700
- Winair WM 653 | SXM-SBH | De Havilland DHC-6
The options available for traveling to SXM from TPA are fairly simple. One can either take AA through MIA, DL via ATL, or even NK through FLL. They were all around the same price, so it only seemed logical to choose DL since the ATL-SXM leg would be operated by one of DL’s new 73G’s with PTV’s and AVOD. Plus, DL has a ticketing agreement with WM, who we would be connecting to in SXM. Neither AA nor NK have any agreement with WM.
Ticketing was done with AMEX since our tickets involved two carriers, which worked out flawlessly.
Check-in at TPA was efficient as always, and the DL agent was able to through-check our baggage to St. Barts.
Both DL and NW now operate out of Airside E at TPA. It makes it seem much more crowded, with is something not common at TPA.
At the gate, I noticed that our aircraft had the satellite “bumps” on the top of the fuselage. This meant that this aircraft had PTV’s. Very nice!
Airline: Delta Air Lines
Flight: DL 2073
Date: 27 July 2009
Aircraft: Boeing 757-232
Departure Airport: Tampa (TPA / KTPA)
Arrival Airport: Atlanta (ATL / KATL)
Scheduled Departure Time: 07:00
Actual Departure Time: 06:55
Scheduled Arrival Time: 08:40
Actual Arrival Time: 08:30
Departure Gate: E64
Arrival Gate: B26
Estimated Load Factor: 95%
Boarding began early at approximately 40 minutes prior to the scheduled departure time. This allowed us to depart about 5 minutes early, which was very nice. A friendly flight attendant welcomed us on board and we made our way to row 21, which is very close to doors 2L and 2R on DL’s 757’s. The seats were very comfortable and the touch screen PTV was nice, however, everything costs money except for watching satellite TV.
We took off to the south on runway 18R and immediately turned right across the bay. The captain announced that we were dodging a few storms on our climb from TPA, but that the flight should be smooth.
For the rest of the flight, I just watched TV and listened to my iPOD. We landed very early on the far runway in ATL, however, it took us a LONG time to taxi in so we only arrived at the gate about 10 minutes early. Still nice to arrive early though.
After looking at the FIDS, I confirmed that our next flight was supposed to depart from E28. I enjoy concourse E, mainly because the biggest aircraft depart from there.
One thing I have to say about ATL is that it honestly has to be one of the most efficiently run airports in the country. While it is far from the nicest, its layout is among the best and most convenient. People who complain about ATL clearly haven’t attempted to transfer at JFK, CDG, EWR, etc.
As I arrived at E28, I was delighted to see our small but sleek 73G sitting at the gate. While this is one of DL’s smallest mainline aircraft, it is among the newest and nicest IMO.
I’m guessing that all E gates are common use? They are different from the standard DL gates.
Airline: Delta Air Lines
Flight: DL 439
Date: 27 July 2009
Aircraft: Boeing 737-732
Departure Airport: Atlanta (ATL / KATL)
Arrival Airport: Saint Maarten (SXM / TNCM)
Scheduled Departure Time: 10:05
Actual Departure Time: 09:51
Scheduled Arrival Time: 14:19
Actual Arrival Time: 14:09
Departure Gate: E28
Estimated Load Factor: 60%
Oddly enough, boarding began very early once again; about 40 minutes before scheduled departure. We were one of the last to board and it looked like the flight was only to be about 60% full. Good for me but bad for DL!
As I sat in my seat, I couldn’t help but notice how nice this aircraft was compared to most of the aircraft DL flies. In Asia, this would be nothing unusual, but here in the U.S. this aircraft is among the nicest.
The seat was very comfortable. Leg rests and winged head rests would obviously be nice, but I think that’s asking a little too much for a 73G.
This 77L was heading to SJU. I had no clue DL flew them there.
Pushback began about 15 (!) minutes early. I was amazed. I’ve never departed ATL this early. Anyway, there quite a long line of aircraft waiting to depart, so it wasn’t until about 20 minutes later that we actually took off. Still, we were off to a great start.
Takeoff was to the west from 27R.
The captain announced that we should expect a fairly smooth flight, however, we were to be dodging some storms, similar to the TPA-ATL flight. We did receive frequent updates from the flight deck throughout the flight, which was good.
The seat belt sign wasn’t turned off until we reached our cruising altitude.
The first “meal service” began shortly after departure. Nothing special, unfortunately.
I spent most of the flight enjoying the AVOD IFE, which was very good. There were several movies on demand along with games, TV shows, and a variety of music. DL definitely has one the best IFE systems in the U.S. IMO. Even better than B6 actually.
The crew on this flight was mediocre to say the least. They never smiled and mumbled when they were talking to passengers. A huge downer unfortunately.
The second food service began about an hour before arrival. I was starving so unfortunately I gave into the airline’s evil BOB option and purchased some chips.
The descent into SXM was very steep. The spoilers were used almost the whole time.
The F/A’s informed us on board that we would have to clear immigration and collect our baggage, regardless of our final destination. I was pretty sure they were mistaken and I was fortunately correct when I found transit counters for WM soon after exiting the aircraft.
The WM agent scanned our baggage receipts and printed out our boarding passes for our flight to St. Barts. We then went through a security checkpoint and then up stairs to the departure area.
SXM has a very nice airport IMO.
Thankfully we were able to get on an earlier flight to SBH, which was very good.
All WM flights depart from bus gates known as the “C Gates” at SXM.
Airline: Windward Island Airways
Flight: WM 653
Date: 27 July 2009
Aircraft: De Havilland DHC-6
Departure Airport: Saint Maarten (SXM / TNCM)
Arrival Airport: Saint Barthélemy (SBH / TFFJ)
Scheduled Departure Time: 14:55
Actual Departure Time: 15:00
Scheduled Arrival Time: 15:10
Actual Arrival Time: 15:10
Estimated Load Factor: 100%
This flight was only 10 minutes in duration but offered some great views. The landing was also very cool. My only complaint is that the cabin was VERY hot. Around 95 degrees!
Overall I enjoyed my experience with DL this time around. It’s great to see them purchasing new aircraft with slimline seats and AVOD IFE. The cabin crew were not that great to say the least but that would be my only complaint.
Feel free to take a look at my other Trip Reports:
Air India 777-200LR DEL-JFK In J W/Pix (by MHTripple7 Jan 11 2009 in Trip Reports) Drukair A319 PBH-DEL In Y W/TONS Of Pix/Vid (by MHTripple7 Jan 10 2009 in Trip Reports) Air India 777-200LR JFK-DEL In C W/Pix (by MHTripple7 Jan 5 2009 in Trip Reports) Delta 767-400ER JNB-ATL In J W/Pix (by MHTripple7 Aug 1 2008 in Trip Reports) South African 737-800 JNB-CPT In C W/Pix (by MHTripple7 Sep 21 2008 in Trip Reports) South African BAe 146-200 LVI-JNB In Y W/Pix (by MHTripple7 Aug 13 2008 in Trip Reports) Air Botswana BAe 146-100 JNB-MUB In Y W/Pix (by MHTripple7 Jul 23 2008 in Trip Reports) Air France 777-300ER CDG-JNB In J W/Pix (by MHTripple7 Jul 23 2008 in Trip Reports) Air France A330-200 DTW-CDG In J W/Pix (by MHTripple7 Jul 22 2008 in Trip Reports) Delta 737-800 JFK-TPA (Pix And Vid) (by MHTripple7 Apr 18 2008 in Trip Reports) Jet Airways 777 DEL-JFK Mar 28 2008 Pix (by MHTripple7 Mar 29 2008 in Trip Reports) Jet Airways 9W707 W/Diversion (Pix) (by MHTripple7 Mar 22 2008 in Trip Reports) Jet Airways 777-300ER JFK-DEL ( Pix) (by MHTripple7 Mar 21 2008 in Trip Reports) Delta DL1836 TPA-JFK 17Mar08 (by MHTripple7 Mar 22 2008 in Trip Reports)