Topic Author
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Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:51 pm

Orlando (MCO) Check-in Areas

Thu Sep 18, 2003 12:46 pm

Just throwing an opinion out there regarding Orlando International. MCO is my home base now, so I see this airport very often. Overall I really like this airport, only negative I see is that the airline mix isn't as exotic as say MIA or LAX. Save for the afternoon European arrivals, the airport has a very domestic feel.

One thing I've noticed over the years (I've lived in Orlando for over 11 years now) is how shabby the check in areas have become. I know that the airline industry is in a slump and MCO itself is undergoing some major renovations...but in my opinion things could be done to spruce up the check in areas.

Some cases to note:
Air Canada. AC has at least 2 flights a day year round to MCO, and that shoots up to 4 or 5 flights during the winter. Yet they share counter space with UA, and the only evidence that AC is located there is a tiny 2'X2' AC sign propped up against a counter.

Air Jamaica. JM has been serving MCO since 1992, and during the summer they serve MCO daily. Yet since they started serving the airport 11 years ago, up till now their "check in area" consists of a very shabby little sign that you almost walk past without noticing. Same goes for Bahamasair, since they are right next to JM

Fronteir. They have 2 and sometimes 3 daily flights into MCO, yet their check in counter in nothing but a bare white wall next to US Airways, with a make shift FRONTEIR sign slapped onto the wall, and it isn't even straight.

ATA, they have a relatively large presence at MCO with several daily flights to MDW, SJU and IND, yet their check in area still carries the old ATA livery that was changed over 2 years ago.

I understand that since 9/11 security has obviously taken top priority over appearance at airports, but in a city like Orlando, supposedly the top tourist destination in the world, where appearances are everything, the GOAA or the individual airlines should step up the make the airport look like the world-class facility it is.
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RE: Orlando (MCO) Check-in Areas

Thu Sep 18, 2003 1:07 pm

I have not been through MCO for about a year but I remember the terminal as being fairly nice. How large is the counter at MCO for ATA? I thought they had the "new" signs up last year at the counter.
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RE: Orlando (MCO) Check-in Areas

Thu Sep 18, 2003 1:17 pm

I very much agree with you. The check-in facilites are very lacking, what aggrivates me is the whole 1st floor where numerous tour companies and holiday operators have quite a bit of counterspace and the airlines seem to be squeezed in upstairs. This may have something to do with the layout of the airport (access to luggage check etc). After 9/11 it has become even worse as new luggage check-in points have been added. What I find ironic about the airport is the parking facilites and grounds are truly first class. The trams out to the gates and the gate concourses themselves are also kept up well. Yet upon walking into the check-in area it seems like an entirely different airport. Just my humble opinion.

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RE: Orlando (MCO) Check-in Areas

Thu Sep 18, 2003 1:35 pm

I work for ATA In MCO. The reason for not changing the backwall is $$$$. after 9/11 the airline clamped down on all budget items that were not of dire need. all new stations get the new backwall and all stations that have to move counters also get the new backwall.

I cannot get into the specific costs that came across my desk but it is signifigant money to replace the length of the wall which consists of 20 counter positions.

From what I'm hearing we should see a new wall before the end of the year.

By the way..Airtran just moved in next to us and they have a very sharp new backwall.

[Edited 2003-09-18 06:43:26]
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RE: Orlando (MCO) Check-in Areas

Thu Sep 18, 2003 2:20 pm

The terminal check-in area where Northwest is, is ok. But at NWA at MCO, you need to do machine, then talk to lady, then take bag to screener, then you can go. That's very inconvenient! Oh well, I was there a few weeks ago, it wasn't bad. I'd imagine around the VS area it must be a nightmare!

Topic Author
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Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2003 12:51 pm

RE: Orlando (MCO) Check-in Areas

Thu Sep 18, 2003 11:29 pm

Thanks for the info, I didn't know Airtran was moving, I'll have to check out their new site next time I'm at the airport.

Although most of the airlines seem cramped in at their check in areas, one area that is actually quite nice, spacious and new is the area where JetBlue, Copa and Martinair have their counters in Terminal A (the northside).
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Joined: Sat May 19, 2001 9:10 am

RE: Orlando (MCO) Check-in Areas

Thu Sep 18, 2003 11:40 pm

That Jetblue area you speak of is kind of the "red headed step child " of the airport, no other area is designed like that. I always liked it becuase the counters are set back much farther allowing for huge "queing" space for passengers.Im not sure why they didnt design the A side ( Southwest counters) expansion that way .
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RE: Orlando (MCO) Check-in Areas

Fri Sep 19, 2003 9:25 am

B6 is actually the nicest of the ckin areas at MCO. All in all the check-in counters at MCO are severely lacking compared to other major airports in the US. I make MCO may base and have found nicer ckin areas at IAD and DCA.

Sean from MCO
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