timh4000
Topic Author
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:14 pm

Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Fri Dec 07, 2018 9:22 pm

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.
 
Bobloblaw
Posts: 2095
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2012 1:15 pm

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Sat Dec 08, 2018 2:04 am

good luck............
 
timh4000
Topic Author
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:14 pm

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Sat Dec 08, 2018 3:11 am

Thanks. the Cancer is under control. When I did have a real short flight years ago, back then they were usually prop. Or a DC9. Always for a connection. My 1st marriage her dad was a bit of a gambler so we would make a yearly Vegas trip, which was always fine by me. That was in the early 90's so props were stil the common means of the 1 hr or less flight most of the time. Years later and My current wife and I when we fly I started seeing all the bombardiers and Embraers popping up, but I never had a reason to fly one. Florida has been our most often destination. Jet blue always has the A320. I was thinking the ALB-PHL we might be on one of the 50 seaters and sure enough there it was. so it was kind of a bucket list thing. Still very surprised at how much of a market there is for the regional flights.
 
PI4EVER
Posts: 788
Joined: Wed May 06, 2009 10:29 pm

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Sun Dec 09, 2018 3:07 pm

I add my Best Wishes for continued success with your treatment. It is an intense life experience. I currently have a spouse undergoing treatment through the Fox Chase Cancer Center in NE Philly so we do our share of travel to and from as well. God speed and safe travels.
ALB-PHL is a busy and strong market for AA and I suspect over time you may see mainline jets such as the 319 added to this market.
Lots of NY government travel, and the connections offered through PHL are an alternative to NYC airports. SYR quite strong to PHL as well.
P.S. I like the 145, but I do miss the Dash 8's. Many may not agree but I grew up on props and hard to get away from that heritage :old:
watch what you want. you may get it.
 
timh4000
Topic Author
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:14 pm

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Mon Dec 10, 2018 8:43 pm

Thank you, and may I say god speed to your spouse as well. You make a lot of sense about the strong market for AA with the ALB-PHL market. I will say this to all of you regular posters on here. Many of you will have more knowledge and more experience than I do. So I will probably be asking more questions, or making certain statements which may seem rather obvious to many of you. Still, aviation is quite a passion of mine, so here I am.

I too can also understand a certain nostalgia for the props. In 1987 I was going from being stationed in Germany to the L.A. AFB. Which if anyone knows is in El sugundo about a mile or 2 from LAX, It is not a true AFB, All technical, communications, some high levels security stuff. I was a medic. My only flight training was with the Van nuys ANG with medical EVAC. A topic for another thread.

In between stations, A buddy of mine was transfering at the same time and we both were spending about a month home before heading off to our new bases. He at the time lived in near Marquette MI, So I took a few days to go see him. Leaving ALB on a 727 for detroit and then I do not recall what prop it was that took me to Marquette. I want to say it was a Dash 8 which was real new at the time, but I just am not certain on that. But, I do remember the feel of the flight, and enjoying it quite a bit.

In my little hometown of Oneonta NY was Catskill Airlines at the time. And it was the most convenient operation. 2 flights a day to LGA among a few others he serviced, Logan being one EWA being another, On my trips home on leave from Germany I could fly direct to JFK, get over to LGA and fly on his 10 seater twin prop to Oneonta. Now that was fun. Bumbling along at maybe 5000ft around 200kts for the 55 minute flight. I looked forward to that sometimes more than crossing the pond with Pan AM in a 747. Especially west bound which took even longer, nearly 8 hrs at times, All I can say is I was glad at the time smoking was allowed as it greatly eased the long flight. Although I greatly appreciate the Embraer with the many flights I am taking to PHL Quick, fairly comfortable for me for the short duration flight. I would not be at all upset to see them pull up a dash 8 for the trip.
 
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GrandSlam
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Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Tue Dec 11, 2018 12:45 pm

As a fellow cancer patient I send my wishes for a continued successful outcome for you. I had seven and a half weeks of daily radio therapy four years back so know how gruelling it is. Fortunately for me though the centre was under ten minutes drive from home. However at least you had the opportunity of flying an aircraft I’ve longed to try and I liked reading your trip report. My biggest problem now is the cost of travel insurance for impaired health. Since cancer I’ve also had a heart bypass too. Living in the UK premiums are affordable for North West Europe but the further away are excessive, the most expensive being USA and Canada. At least my cancer treatment was free! Travel whilst you can.
I’m a little older than you and my first memory of flying was on a British United Vickers Viscount from London Gatwick to Perpignan for a family holiday in northern Spain. I caught the flying bug at age 5. How times change, now there are airports everywhere offering services linking towns and cities which never thought they’d have so many destinations available to them. Now I will only fly within Western Europe, my most recent trips have been on Saab 340 and 2000s or B738s.
 
evank516
Posts: 1774
Joined: Wed Mar 01, 2017 12:15 am

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Fri Dec 14, 2018 8:05 pm

All my best to you in your treatment. I'm glad to hear everything is under control. Fingers crossed for remission!
 
USAirALB
Posts: 1918
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:46 am

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Fri Dec 14, 2018 8:46 pm

Best wishes for a speedy recovery, and nice TR.

It's quite sad that the route is all regional. I remember around 10 years ago the route was mostly operated by 734s and the occasional E70...how times have changed.
RJ85, F70, E135, E140, E145, E70, E75, E90, CR2, CR7, CR9, 717, 732, 733, 734, 735, 73G, 738, 739, 744, 752, 753, 762, 772, 77E, 77W, 789, 319, 320, 321, 332, 333, 343, 359, 388
 
timh4000
Topic Author
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:14 pm

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:03 pm

GrandSlam wrote:
As a fellow cancer patient I send my wishes for a continued successful outcome for you. I had seven and a half weeks of daily radio therapy four years back so know how gruelling it is. Fortunately for me though the centre was under ten minutes drive from home. However at least you had the opportunity of flying an aircraft I’ve longed to try and I liked reading your trip report. My biggest problem now is the cost of travel insurance for impaired health. Since cancer I’ve also had a heart bypass too. Living in the UK premiums are affordable for North West Europe but the further away are excessive, the most expensive being USA and Canada. At least my cancer treatment was free! Travel whilst you can.
I’m a little older than you and my first memory of flying was on a British United Vickers Viscount from London Gatwick to Perpignan for a family holiday in northern Spain. I caught the flying bug at age 5. How times change, now there are airports everywhere offering services linking towns and cities which never thought they’d have so many destinations available to them. Now I will only fly within Western Europe, my most recent trips have been on Saab 340 and 2000s or B738s.

Thanks GS. I'm glad you were able to get through it, and also bypass as well.

While my treatment is not free, I do have some of the best insurance you're ever going to find in the U.S.
R
At least with AA and whichever regional they are going through, in the north east, the ERJ145 seems to still be their popular choice of plane: for the 1 hr gate to gate hops, I think the plane is suited quite well. Other than aging out, or that they need bigger planes to fit demand. 90% to capacity on most flights so I think there's still a place for the 50 seaters.

In the past. It was either a prop or DC 9, 737 MD80
I don't remember there being such a big market. The plane to me is unique in the 1-2 set up. I always try for the single aisle. I'm not a real big guy, but any economy seats are going to be difficult for a guy who is well over 6' and maybe weighing close to or over 300. Wouldn't want to be that guy on the ERJ145 .
 
DaveFly
Posts: 366
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:35 pm

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Mon Dec 31, 2018 4:53 pm

Best wishes for a complete recovery.
I’ve flown SWF-PHL a few times on Eagle because one of my children lives in Philly, and I loathe driving and traffic. It’s such a short flight, so the 145 was just fine with me.
I also flew with my another child (they’re all in their 20s) on the 145 from Newark to New Orleans, which was not too much fun. The ride felt constantly unsettled and noisy in the cabin. I hadn’t noticed it on the 1/2 hour flight, but I sure did notice it on the 3-hour flight.
717,727,737,747,757,767,777,787
L1011,DC8,DC9,DC10,MD80/90
A300,A319,320,321,330,340,
CRJ,E135/45/190,
DH8,Avro85,DHBeaver,AstarHelo,F100,ATR42
 
timh4000
Topic Author
Posts: 52
Joined: Fri Dec 07, 2018 1:14 pm

Re: Regional ALB- PHL American eagle

Mon Dec 31, 2018 7:19 pm

Yikes Dave, that's a long ride on a 145. Hope you don't ever have to do that again. I'm sure I'd pay more for a bigger plane. Definitely the farther front you are the better. In my many trips on the 145, I have been as far back as row 17 and it's very noisy back there.

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