1st post, apologies to mods if I am not posting this in the right place, or other errors.
My most recent flying experiences are due to cancer treatment so I have been making several trips from ALB-PHL through American eagle on the ERJ 145. The flights are covered through the cancer center, as American eagle would not be my 1st choice.
I have had little regional experience, other than a couple connections, but for the sake of flying regional I had never done so. I was and still am surprised at how popular this run is. 4 flights a day just through American eagle and I have been on all but the earliest of them. 6 or 7 round trips now, having just completed 6 weeks of daily radiation therapy. They gave me flights home for the weekends, plus the initial consults. In January I will be making a couple more for surgical consults and eventual surgery. Of the 12 to 14 actual flights, all but one was at least mostly booked. A few were fully booked and only one Sunday eve flight back to PHL was half full. I just never knew how popular these flights are. Some obviously are just connections, but I still am quite surprised at the amount of people who either just pay the money because they like to fly, or hate to drive, and I guess business commuters.
ALB is usually my starting point for all flights since I live about an hour from there. I am sure some here have experience with ALB, besides the fact that it is the closest airport for me, which I've long lost count, 40 or 50 flights from there by now I am guessing, it is my favorite airport. Obviously small, but run very nice. I have had very few delays, weather of course, but otherwise I have had very little bad experiences having to wait for hours. Economy parking is great as they have a shuttle service that runs continually, you never have to wait long at all and they will usually drop you right off to your car or real close to it.
The flights are usually scheduled for about an hour and ten minutes, typical actual air time about 45 minutes. We did one of them in 39. My wife has accompanied me on most of them, and she likes to fly as well... actually sleeps on this flight sometimes lol. Typical altitude is either 16000 or 24000, although we had ATC permission to fly at low altitude to avoid some bad stuff. That was my favorite flight, real good views. It was still pretty choppy but none of the float in your seat stuff. My last flight coming home was a bit rough, but not horrible. As we were coming in almost to the threshold, probably around 2 or 300 ft we caught a real good wiggle and I expected a go around, but he righted it quick and got down without a problem,
Thoughts on the 145... I personally like the plane. I enjoy it especially when I get the single row. I am not a real big guy at 5'9" so I don't have a lot of issues with leg room in economy. I certainly wouldn't want to spend several hours on it, but the 1hr flights are no problem for me. I have read a thread about not getting any drink service from the single FA, on a similar length flight, personally I don't see it as that big of a deal. If you really need a drink of water I am sure you can walk up to the FA and get one. or a biscof. It seems hit and miss, sometimes they come around with water and a snack, sometimes not.
Any current or former drivers of the ERJ 145 what are your thoughts? I have read some pilot reviews, some think its a PITA, others don't seem to mind it. I have heard several passenger rumblings about how young the pilots are, Typically I am sure this is where they get their start as commercial pilots, and for whatever lack of experience they may have or don't have, personally I look at it as most are likely eager to prove themselves and move up to better higher paying gigs.
The plane seems ample powered, you really feel the acceleration on the runway, and it seems to get up to altitude pretty quick even fully loaded, granted, I don't think on this flight I have been higher than 24000. One thing I noticed is the deceleration I have felt on a few times, kinda cool actually. What I have also noticed is generally it doesn't seem to like to glide in. A lot of bumping of the throttles on final even with calm conditions. Most touch downs are quite noticeable. I think only once did I feel a truly smooth one. A few of them almost jarring. Not sure if that is just how this particular plane is, but just my experiences I have had on about a dozen trips now.
Is there an intro section? I caught the bug when I was 4 years old flying NY to SF on a 707 in 1969. Apparently I just would not shut up, I loved it, and still do to this day just as much.