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jetblue01
Topic Author
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2012 2:28 pm

Cabo, Mexico - United CRJ-550, A320 & 737-800

Fri Apr 02, 2021 1:23 am

Back in the fall of 2019, we planned a trip for the summer of 2020, to Tel Aviv and Amsterdam. With everything going on with Covid, we had to change the trip. First, we changed it to Hawaii for December 2020. Then we changed it to Amsterdam and Ireland for the Spring of 2021. Still with the travel restrictions, this trip also wasn’t going to work out. My sister is going to college in the fall, and she has plans during the summer. Since we had the credits from these flights and not much time left, we decided back in February to plan a trip for March. After a long and cold winter in the Northeast, we wanted to go somewhere warm. After looking at Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, Jamaica and Mexico, we eventually settled on Mexico. I had been to Cancun, and no one else had been to Mexico. We finally settled on Cabo. I finished packing around 8pm the night before we were supposed to be leaving.

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Shortly after I finished packing, I got this notification on my phone

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The flight was delayed about 1 hour and 20 minutes. When I booked the trip, the nonstop flight from ORD-SJD was not available. The only flights went through IAH. We had the option to connect through ORD or IAD and then to IAH. I went with ORD because it would be on the CRJ-550, which I had not flown on yet. Also, one of the ORD-IAH flights was on the 787. I have only been on the Dreamliner once, so I went with this flight. Unfortunately, the delay would mean we would miss the 787. We would be landing right around the same time as it was leaving. For some reason in the app only the departure time was showing delayed. The arrival time was still showing ontime. So, it would not allow me to switch the flight in the app. When I called United, the wait time was over 2 hours to speak to someone. There were only a few seats left on the flight to IAD, and those filled up as I was waiting for someone to pick up the phone. There was also a later flight from ORD-IAH, but that also only had a few seats left. If those seats filled up, we would be out of luck. There were not any flights back the day after we were supposed to come back. So, we would have had to push our trip back by two days. We called the resort, but they were closed for the night. So, we were not sure if that was even an option. I kept refreshing the app, as I anxiously waited for someone to pick up. Finally, I was able to get through to someone. They were quickly able to rebook us, and we got some of the last seats on the flight. We would now be flying from ORD-IAH on an A320, instead of the 787. I was a little annoyed, but glad we at least got seats and would be able to leave the next morning. By the time I got everything figured out, it was past midnight. Since the flight was delayed, we got to sleep in a little later. We ended up getting to the airport around the time, we were originally supposed to be leaving

United Express “GoJet” 4613
Syracuse, NY (SYR) – Chicago, IL (ORD)
Bombardier CRJ-550
N547GJ
Seat 12A
Scheduled Departure Time – 6:45am
Actual Departure Time- 8:00am
Scheduled Arrival Time – 8:01am
Actual Arrival Time- 8:38am
1 hour 38 minutes

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N547GJ spent the night at gate 21

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The crew showed up around 7:20am. Shortly after this boarding started. They made announcements they were going to try to get us out as quickly as possible. This was my first time on a CRJ-550. The one flight attendant made multiple announcements telling everyone to take their seats, so we could depart

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12A

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We ended up pushing back around 7:50am. The engines were started and we taxied really fast out to runway 28

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When we checked in with the Departure controller, we were given a turn to a 360 heading, and given 5000ft to climb to. There was a Cessna off the departure end that we needed to get around. Usually, you are given a turn to the Northwest and cleared to join the Victor Airway. Once the traffic was no longer a factor, we were given a turn back to a 280 heading and instructed to join V483. After being cleared to 10,000ft, we were handed off to Cleveland Center

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We climbed up to 36,000ft, where we stayed for most of the flight. The flight attendant came around with drinks. Over Michigan we went down to 32,000ft for a little bit, before starting the descent into ORD

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It was a nice morning in Chicago with light winds and some scattered clouds

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Final 28C

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Pulling into the gate next to N946SW. This was the first time I’ve seen a 200, in the new colors

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N547GJ spent a little bit on the ground, before flying to Cleveland

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We landed right around the time we were originally supposed to be leaving Chicago. We now had about 2 hours until the later flight to Houston was leaving. We walked around a little bit. I don’t get to fly through ORD that often, so it is cool to go to a different airport every so often. Eventually we ended up at our next gate. The last time I was at ORD was the third week of April 2020. This was when Covid was still kind of new, and people were not traveling. ORD was like a ghost town. It was really creepy to see the airport almost completely empty. I was flying back to Phoenix, and one of my 737s only had 18 people on it. According to TSA, the day I flew only 98,000 people flew that day. Today ORD was pretty busy, and there were a lot of flights. Over 1,200,000 people flew. So, it was much better to see ORD today, then how it was last April.

United 2354
Chicago, IL (ORD) – Houston, TX (IAH)
Airbus A320
N402UA
Seat 12A
Scheduled Departure Time – 10:40am
Actual Departure Time- 10:57am
Scheduled Arrival Time – 1:40pm
Actual Arrival Time- 1:13pm
2 hours 16 minutes

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This would be my first time flying to Houston. Houston was also the last major airport in the US, that I had never been to before.

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N402UA at gate B12, after arriving from Fort Myers

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It was a full flight to Houston. When the door was closed, the captain made an announcement. He said that we were waiting on a few last minute bags. He apologized for the delay, but said the people whose bags they were would be happy. Once they were loaded, we would be pushing back

Pushing back next to N76515 getting ready to depart to Los Angeles

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Taxiing to 28R(N5)

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“United 2354 heading 220 contact departure”

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We climbed up to 34,000ft at first. About 50 minutes into the flight it got bumpy, and we climbed up to 36,000ft. It was smooth until we started the descent into IAH. It was a little bumpy the entire way down the arrival

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Cruising

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Descending via the GESNR1

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The spoilers were out for a lot of the descent

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Turning final

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Final 8L

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N402UA at gate C41, before its last flight of the day over to Miami

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I would be seeing N402UA again in a few days

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We had about an hour until boarding was starting, for our last flight of the day to Cabo

United 473
Houston, TX (IAH) – Cabo San Lucas, MX (SJD)
Boeing 737-800
N33262
Seat 21A
Scheduled Departure Time – 3:00pm
Actual Departure Time- 3:13pm
Scheduled Arrival Time – 4:54pm
Actual Arrival Time- 4:44pm
2 hours 31 minutes

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N33262 at gate E12, after flying in from San Salvador

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21A next to N33203, departing right around the same time as us to Guatemala City

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One flight attendant made 3 announcements during boarding about wearing a face covering during the flight, or “you would be removed from the aircraft”. I thought it was a little excessive, but I didn’t know what was coming

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As we were taxiing out to the runway, we were once again reminded we needed to have a mask on the entire flight

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A United 757 going to Bogota holding next to us

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“United 473 RNAV to TTAPS, runway 15R cleared for takeoff”

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Climbing out of IAH

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We climbed up 36,000ft. Once we were over Mexico, we went down to 34,000ft. The flight attendants came through with drinks and snacks. After this they handed out the immigration, customs and Covid forms. Multiple times throughout the flight, the flight attendant made announcements about wearing a mask throughout the flight. She said it as were climbing out, and multiple times randomly while we were at cruise. It got to be very annoying. At one point I went back to the bathroom and she made an announcement, and one of the other flight attendants in the back rolled her eyes

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Cruising

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Another full flight

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About 30 minutes before landing the captain gave us the weather, and how much longer until landing. He wished us all a good rest of the day, and to enjoy Baja. After this the flight attendant made an announcement regarding the initial descent, and of course reminded us we needed to have a mask on through descent and landing

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Almost there

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Final runway 34

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Touchdown

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Pulling into the gate next to N994AN that had arrived a little before us from DFW, and an Alaska A320 taking off to LAX. She didn’t mention anything about masks as we were taxiing in, so I thought we were safe. But sure enough as we were getting off the plane, we heard one last time to “make sure we continue to wear a mask, as we deplane the aircraft”. It made for a total of 11 announcements she made about wearing masks, and possibly one of the most annoying flight attendants I have ever had

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After waiting about 40 minutes for our bags, we headed outside to get our shuttle to our hotel. It was a nice week, and it was nice to be out of the snow and cold for a week

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The day we were leaving, our flight was departing at 9:45am. The day before I looked up our flight and saw we would once again be on N402UA, the same A320 we had flown from ORD-IAH on the way down. This was the only flight they had back. The other flight would have involved another stop at IAH, and it was leaving even earlier. I would have liked to leave a little later in the day, but we did not have many options. The only good thing was we would be getting home around 9:00pm, instead of midnight. Our shuttle came at 7:00am, for the 45 minute drive to SJD.

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UA check in

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N402UA at gate 13. It had flown down the afternoon before from San Francisco

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United 2078
Cabo San Lucas, MX (SJD) – Chicago, IL (ORD)
Airbus A320
N402UA
Seat 28A
Scheduled Departure Time – 9:45am
Actual Departure Time- 10:59am
Scheduled Arrival Time – 3:52pm
Actual Arrival Time- 4:42pm
3 hours 43 minutes

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When my boarding pass printed out, I saw the delightful SSSS. I was selected for extra security. During boarding I was pulled aside, and after an inspection of my phone, I was allowed to board

28A, next to N314PD that had just arrived from Chicago

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Around 9:30am the door was closed, we sat there for a few minutes without any other announcements being made. Finally, the captain said “I wish I could welcome you aboard and say we are departing, but no such luck this morning.” The flight deck door would not lock so maintenance needed to come out and fix it. It took a while for them to get to the plane. The captain had mentioned he wasn’t anticipating it being a long delay once they got there. By the time it was finally fixed, we had been sitting for an hour and fifteen minutes. We finally pushed back around 10:45am, an hour late. They said that they were aware most people had connections and would try to get us to Chicago as quickly as possible

Pushed back with N896NN that had just arrived after a long flight from JFK

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N565AS arriving from Los Angeles

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N158AN also arriving from LAX

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N7848A heading out to Houston

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As we were taxiing out to the runway, the captain said that we would now be departing to the South, so we should get a nice view of the water after takeoff

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Climbing out of SJD

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We initially leveled off at 37,000ft. A little while later we went up to 39,000ft, before going back down to 37,000ft. We finally ended back up at 39,000ft a little later on in the flight. The flight attendants came around twice with drinks and snacks on this flight

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Cruising

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Pretty empty flight

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35 minutes before landing we started our descent into ORD

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Descending on the SHAIN2 arrival

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Turning final 10C

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A United 737 from PDX on final for the parallel

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We pulled into gate M19 at 4:53pm, 1 hour late and just 40 minutes before our flight to SYR would be boarding. We had about an hour to go through immigration, recheck our bags, and get over to our flight to the other terminal. I had never had to go through immigration at ORD, or change terminals so I did not know how long it would take. It was 5:01pm when we got off the plane. It was quite a long walk before we even got to immigration. They did not have any mobile passport or anything else open. Just the normal line. If that wasn’t bad enough, they only had one line open. Luckily it was pretty much just our flight, so the line was not nearly as bad as it could have been. After waiting for a few people, it was our turn. Once we got through, we had to wait a few minutes until the bags started coming out. After this we brought them to be rechecked. Since we had changed our reservation a few times and I was selected for the random security, it erased my precheck number. I asked an agent near the baggage recheck if they could put it in, since I figured the precheck line would be quicker to get through. They were having trouble putting it in, and it was taking a long time. I didn’t want to spend much more time, so I just decided to just go to the domestic terminal, and hope the regular line wasn’t that long. We got on the line for the bus. Our crew came out with another crew and they got the last few spots on the first bus, so we had to wait for the next one. At this point it was about 5:25pm, boarding would be starting in 10 minutes. The ride was slow, as there was some traffic. On the bus I pulled out my phone, to see what the options were the following day. The first nonstop flight did not leave until 2pm, or we could leave at 7:00am and connect at IAD. I impatiently watched the time on my phone, until we finally got there. We finally got to the checkpoint at 5:35pm, right at the time they were starting boarding. The line was shorter than I expected, but there was still a decent line. We ended up getting to the gate at 5:48pm, 47 minutes after we had gotten off the first flight. The agent said she was about to close the door. She said she looked up our reservation and saw we were coming from Mexico. She didn’t think we were going to make it, and was impressed that we had. We were the last people to board, and the door was closed at 5:52pm. Just a few minutes later, we would have missed it.

United Express “GoJet” 4385
Chicago, IL (ORD) – Syracuse, NY (SYR)
Bombardier CRJ-550
N552GJ
Seat 17A
Scheduled Departure Time – 6:00pm
Actual Departure Time- 6:15pm
Scheduled Arrival Time – 8:50pm
Actual Arrival Time- 8:35pm
1 hour 20 minutes

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17A, next to N796SK getting ready to depart to Nashville

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Right after we boarded, the door was closed and we pushed back. The engines were quickly started, and we headed out to runway 9C

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“Lindbergh 4385 fly heading 070, runway 9C Foxtrot-Foxtrot cleared for takeoff”

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We climbed up to FL350, for the flight over to SYR. I watched the sunset, before it got dark. The flight went by pretty quick, and before long we were starting down towards SYR

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Flying over Buffalo

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Descending into SYR

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SYR approach sent us around to the north around the airport on a right downwind. A lot of times they send you around the southside, when they are landing to the west. We made a smooth touch down on runway 28, before exiting the runway onto one of the new taxiways, they redid them all last summer. After this we quickly taxied to the gate

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And for the last picture, the same one I started with. N552GJ sitting at gate 21. It spent the night, before flying the same flight I had flown a week prior back to ORD

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debonair
Posts: 4310
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2004 10:50 pm

Re: Cabo, Mexico - United CRJ-550, A320 & 737-800

Fri Apr 02, 2021 11:59 am

Nice TR! And your verdict about the CRJ550? Is it a real "game changer" and does it beat the other CRJs? I mean, better comfort and more space for hand luggage?
Btw. I was surprised that the B738 was equipped with PTV, the A320 not - is this inconstancy the norm?
 
User avatar
BWIAirport
Posts: 1089
Joined: Thu Jun 23, 2016 10:29 pm

Re: Cabo, Mexico - United CRJ-550, A320 & 737-800

Tue Apr 06, 2021 6:44 pm

Nice report! I stayed at that exact resort in the spring of 2014. It's a spectacular place.
 
jetblue01
Topic Author
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2012 2:28 pm

Re: Cabo, Mexico - United CRJ-550, A320 & 737-800

Thu Apr 08, 2021 1:28 am

debonair wrote:
Nice TR! And your verdict about the CRJ550? Is it a real "game changer" and does it beat the other CRJs? I mean, better comfort and more space for hand luggage?
Btw. I was surprised that the B738 was equipped with PTV, the A320 not - is this inconstancy the norm?


I honestly didn't think it was much different then any other CRJ. I haven't flown United that much, but every A319 or A320 haven't had PTVs. Some of the 737s do, and some don't
 
jetblue01
Topic Author
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2012 2:28 pm

Re: Cabo, Mexico - United CRJ-550, A320 & 737-800

Thu Apr 08, 2021 1:29 am

BWIAirport wrote:
Nice report! I stayed at that exact resort in the spring of 2014. It's a spectacular place.


It was really nice!
 
767747
Posts: 2225
Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2005 10:08 am

Re: Cabo, Mexico - United CRJ-550, A320 & 737-800

Thu Apr 08, 2021 2:52 am

Good report and photos. I'm not surprised by how many mask announcements were made - so many people are still not compliant on flights, that I'm sure they deal with it a lot during each of their flying days.

Would love to visit Cabo sometime. Looks beautiful!
 
jetblue01
Topic Author
Posts: 227
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2012 2:28 pm

Re: Cabo, Mexico - United CRJ-550, A320 & 737-800

Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:52 pm

767747 wrote:
Good report and photos. I'm not surprised by how many mask announcements were made - so many people are still not compliant on flights, that I'm sure they deal with it a lot during each of their flying days.

Would love to visit Cabo sometime. Looks beautiful!


Yeah. It was by far even more announcements made on the IAH-SJD flight, then any of the other flights. Cabo was great, you should go. Definitely worth a visit!

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