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BWIAirport
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Sunrise Flight with the US's Best Economy Product | BWI-ATL-TPA on DL

Mon Oct 21, 2019 6:03 pm

Booking
While I was on fall break from school, I decided to visit my sister who goes to school in Tampa. Searching for options from BWI-TPA, and with the desire to try something different, my options had been narrowed to Spirit, Southwest, and Delta. I had flown BWI-TPA-BWI on WN in March, so barring an extreme discount, that was out. NK actually ended up being the most expensive of the three options once all the fees had been applied. Gone. DL ultimately came out about $20 cheaper than WN with the added bonus of flying the 757. Sold. The R/T ticket came out to around $350, including seat selection. For my 2-night trip, I decided not to pay for a checked bag.

Time to fly
My first flight from BWI-ATL departed at 6am. My dad did a great job containing his excitement that he got to drive me to the airport at 4.
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Without a bag to check, I headed right for the D/E security checkpoint.
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After security, I grabbed a terrible breakfast sandwich from one of the stores and waited for boarding, which began at 5:20.

Delta 2641
BWI-ATL
Departure: 6:10am (right on schedule)
Arrival: 7:40am (scheduled 7:44)
Duration: 1h 30m
N901DN Boeing 737-932(ER) seat 26F

My trusty steed at Gate D23. She flew in last night from Detroit as DL2918.
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Since it was a full flight, they asked for volunteers to check bags, free of charge. I volunteered to do so, which moved me up from MAIN2 boarding group to MAIN1. No overhead space issues and I board sooner. Win-win.

Seat 26F
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Taxi to runway 28. For such a short flight, and with BWI more or less at sea level, these are pretty low flaps, right?
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Climbing out over an awakening Baltimore
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During October, Delta is raising money for breast cancer research. $2 for every pink lemonade or pink martini purchase goes towards that cause. 6:30am is a little early for even this college student to start drinking, so I grabbed a pink lemonade.
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The most pleasant surprise of the whole trip was the full-service, free, long-haul-style IFE available on every seat. It made me wish I was flying for another 5 hours. Seats also had a USB port and universal A/C outlet. Delta makes it blatantly obvious they care about every single passenger, regardless of travel class.

The sun is rising
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OZZZI1 arrival into 26R
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My Flightaware app said we'd be arriving at the A gates at ATL, which worked for me since I had a tight connection and my next flight left from B12. Then I watched us taxi right past Concourse A... then past Concourse B... then C, then D. Finally, we pull into Gate E8. Fun coincidence: this is the exact gate I arrived at last time I flew BWI-ATL last May. That elation was short-lived, as I needed to hop over 4 terminals for my next flight, which boarded 2 minutes after we arrived at the gate. Naturally, the passengers on this flight were in no particular hurry to disembark.
Note the time on my phone, boarding time, and travel time. I probably won't be the first passenger on this flight:
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I made it as boarding was wrapping up. Seat 30F:
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Delta 2607
ATL-TPA
Departure: 8:51am (scheduled 8:41)
Arrival: 9:52am (scheduled 9:31)
Duration: 1h 1m
N671DN Boeing 757-232 Seat 30F

Lengthily taxi to Runway 27L. We waited in a queue of about 10 aircraft for departure. This is not abnormal to ATL of course, but it wasn't helped by the fact 27R-9L was closed for construction.
Powerful 757 takeoff and we climb uneventfully to FL330, where we cruise for about 15 minutes.
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This 27-year-old aircraft felt brand new thanks to Delta's upgraded cabin. IFE and power at every seat. After a brief drink and cookie service, we headed down to the Sunshine State.
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Flying west of the airport over the Bay, then swinging a left hook to line up with 1R. 1L-19R was closed for construction. We took the FOOXX5 arrival.
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Greeted by an AN124 parked on taxiway J upon arrival
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The Boeing 757 is my favorite aircraft. Couple that with the level of service Delta provides, even on these 1-hour hops, and you have the perfect flight. That's what we have here. I also should have enough miles after this trip for a Comfort+ upgrade for my spring break trip to the Virgin Islands.

Detailed video trip report: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hA_JohxUFt4
Next flight: November 23 BA216 IAD-LHR A388
November 24 BA814 LHR-CPH A320

SWA, UAL, DAL, AWE, ASA, TRS, DLH, CLH, AFR, BAW, EIN, AAL | E190 DC94 CRJ2 B712 B733 B737 B738 B739 B744 B752 B753 B762 B77W A319 A320 A321 A333 A343 A388 MD88
 
mchei
Posts: 129
Joined: Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:20 pm

Re: Sunrise Flight with the US's Best Economy Product | BWI-ATL-TPA on DL

Tue Oct 22, 2019 8:24 am

Nice report, thank you!
How was your level of excitement taking into account the arrival time at the gate and the boarding time of your next flight? :)
I hope you had your running shoes with you. I like it when people look at you when you run for your connection as if you were the only person that would run at an airport...

Regards from Germany!
F70-F100-E145-E170-E190-319-320-321-735–736-737-738-752-763–742-744-333-343-ATR72-Metroliner-Saab2000-Lockheed Electra-C172-C182-C182RG-MD11
 
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BWIAirport
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Re: Sunrise Flight with the US's Best Economy Product | BWI-ATL-TPA on DL

Tue Oct 22, 2019 1:54 pm

mchei wrote:
Nice report, thank you!
How was your level of excitement taking into account the arrival time at the gate and the boarding time of your next flight? :)
I hope you had your running shoes with you. I like it when people look at you when you run for your connection as if you were the only person that would run at an airport...

Regards from Germany!

Thanks! Fortunately, most of the transportation across the airport was done by the Plane Train, which was a lot faster than I was expecting it to be. I was never nervous about missing my connection, but since I always sit in a window seat I don't like boarding too late, since it means I have to inconvenience my seatmates.
Next flight: November 23 BA216 IAD-LHR A388
November 24 BA814 LHR-CPH A320

SWA, UAL, DAL, AWE, ASA, TRS, DLH, CLH, AFR, BAW, EIN, AAL | E190 DC94 CRJ2 B712 B733 B737 B738 B739 B744 B752 B753 B762 B77W A319 A320 A321 A333 A343 A388 MD88
 
sprxUSA
Posts: 268
Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2004 5:17 am

Re: Sunrise Flight with the US's Best Economy Product | BWI-ATL-TPA on DL

Tue Oct 22, 2019 4:07 pm

They show boarding 40 min peior to dep, seems a bit much. But how long did you sit after boarding at the gate with 'nothing' happening? I know pax are slooooow to board and all now, so can see why they want everyone there as early as can be. Like the report and pics.
Gem State Airlines..."we have a gem of an airline"
 
mchei
Posts: 129
Joined: Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:20 pm

Re: Sunrise Flight with the US's Best Economy Product | BWI-ATL-TPA on DL

Tue Oct 22, 2019 4:30 pm

I once was lucky to have a very kind and professional FA on board my flight. I was sitting in the back and she knew that a few people had some very tight connections to make in Frankfurt. Because we were running a bit late, it was pretty clear we would miss our flights. She did three announcements that people should remain seated in case they didn’t have tight connections to enable other to make their flights, also from the back of the plane. She repeated that after touchdown and, believe it or not, people kept seated.
I made my flight and I wrote Lufthansa that I found this super professional.
But it happened only once.
F70-F100-E145-E170-E190-319-320-321-735–736-737-738-752-763–742-744-333-343-ATR72-Metroliner-Saab2000-Lockheed Electra-C172-C182-C182RG-MD11
 
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BWIAirport
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Re: Sunrise Flight with the US's Best Economy Product | BWI-ATL-TPA on DL

Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:15 pm

sprxUSA wrote:
They show boarding 40 min peior to dep, seems a bit much. But how long did you sit after boarding at the gate with 'nothing' happening? I know pax are slooooow to board and all now, so can see why they want everyone there as early as can be. Like the report and pics.

That's a great point. On both segments, boarding ended at least 10 minutes prior to pushback, with passengers twiddling their thumbs or watching TV. I suppose "hurry up and wait" is viewed more favorably by the airlines than waiting until the last possible moment to start boarding. Leaves more room for error. Thanks!
Next flight: November 23 BA216 IAD-LHR A388
November 24 BA814 LHR-CPH A320

SWA, UAL, DAL, AWE, ASA, TRS, DLH, CLH, AFR, BAW, EIN, AAL | E190 DC94 CRJ2 B712 B733 B737 B738 B739 B744 B752 B753 B762 B77W A319 A320 A321 A333 A343 A388 MD88

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