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A Long Weekend's Reprieve: DL DTW-BOS-DTW

Wed Oct 13, 2021 1:52 am

Background
Originally, my medical school scheduled my class's much delayed white coat ceremony for the Friday before Labor Day weekend. Due to COVID, the medical school called the ceremony off, leaving a 4 day long weekend with nothing scheduled. Due to the normal variance of the Jewish calendar, the High Holiday of Rosh Hashana (new year) started on Labor Day. Additionally, I didn't have any in-person classes scheduled for that Tuesday, so I was able to schedule an impromptu trip back home to see family and try to have some semblance of a family celebration (although with fewer people in attendance).

Booking
DL and B6 both ply the BOS-DTW route. Due to scheduling constraints (my mother wanted to avoid having to drive in rush hour traffic, and I had a Zoom class on Tuesday 1-3), I had to choose DL because it had more flights available. Going to BOS, I selected DL1012, which left DTW at 10:05 and arrived in BOS at 11:57. Going back to DTW, I selected DL 709, which departed BOS at 17:40 and was scheduled to arrive at DTW at 20:00. Both flights were operated by an A321. This represents my first time flying this type on DL.

DL1012 DTW-BOS
Online Check In
Learning from my previous mistake using my dad's DL credit card, I did not check a bag on this flight, and the night before my departure I checked in online using the app and grabbed an electronic boarding pass.

At the airport
Around 8:25 the US Park bus dropped me off at DTW's McNamara terminal. As I walked over the airbridge, I noticed that the TSA checkpoint had no line. Because I didn't have any checked bags, I went directly to the checkpoint, and was through security in no time at all. Once through and after I had recombobulated myself and made a pit stop, I walked around the A concourse and planespotted.

Image DLA332 bound for NGO having its engine serviced before its long journey

Image DL A359

By the time I got to gate A76 (my departure gate), N382DN was already there after operating an early morning flight from MKE.

Image My 2.2 year old ride to BOS

While I was sitting around the gate area, the gate agents were making repeated announcements saying that the flight was overbooked and they needed quite a few people to take vouchers and fly to BOS on a later flight.

Image I didn't know that the mail needed so many gateside parking spaces.

At 9:22 the gate agents announced that boarding would begin in 10 minutes. Barely 5 minutes later, preboarding began. Consistent with my previous flights, premium cabins boarded first, before the plane was boarded back to front.

At 9:36, my row was called for boarding. Once I was onboard the plane, I had some difficulty finding a spot for my bag, and I ended up having to walk against the direction of the crowd in order to find a spot for it. Once I had stowed my bag, I made my way to seat 29A, where I parked myself and began to look out the window.

Image Modern cabin

At 9:55, the boarding door closed, and the pilots announced that we would have a smooth flight, and an ontime arrival in BOS. 5 minutes later the safety video began to play, and as it ended pushback commenced and the engines began to hum to life.

Image Company B712

At 10:07 we began to taxi towards the runway.

Image AA CRJ

Image Company plane behind us waiting for departure

At 10:12 we began a smooth takeoff from DTW. The climbout from DTW felt somewhat sluggish.

Image DL hangar and interchange serving DTW

Image Downtown Detroit and the Ford Center

Image I can see my apartment down there

As we climbed out over Southern Ontario we hit some bumps

Image Lake Huron

Image Agrarian Southern Ontario

As we cleared 10,000 feet the flight attendants made their announcement, and announced that you had to pay for headphones. Unfortunately, I only had bluetooth headphones available to me so I couldn't fully use the entertainment system. The selection available seemed to be smaller than I had experienced last time I flew on a DL plane with a PTV (pre-COVID), but it still had a good selection. I ended up mostly just using the inflight map. I also lost a few rounds of chess to the computer, and played Blitz-Blast.

Eventually, we reached our cruising altitude of 37,000 feet, and at 10:40 the seatbelt sign came off. The flight attendants also began their service. Sadly, they didn't have any biscoff cookies, but they did have Gold Fish, and granola bars on offer for snack. I ended up selecting the Gold Fish for a snack, and just used my water bottle for a beverage.

At 11:09, as we passed West of Albany, NY, the seatbelt sign came on and we began our descent into BOS. As we descended through 12,000 feet, we encountered some bumps, but otherwise it was a smooth descent

At 11:26, final approach was announced.

Image Beautiful landscape

Image Downtown BOS in the distance

At 11:33 the gear came down and 2 minutes later we made a soft landing into BOS.

Image The view of downtown Boston from the runway. Once we turned off the runway we began to taxi to the gate.

Image FX Concourse

Image DL A321

At 11:42 we pulled into gate A18. There seemed to be a fairly long wait to get off the plane, but eventually I was able to grab my rollaboard and make my way into the terminal.

Once inside I headed straight to arrivals, and after a short wait I met up with my mother to head for lunch at Kelly's before beginning the trek to the Merrimack River Valley.

Overall Weighted Score
Image

3.35/5

DL 709 BOS-DTW

Online Check In
The night before my flight I checked in using the DL app and generated an electronic boarding pass.

At the Airport
After spending 2 hours getting wrecked in an online review session where the faculty thought we had learned about congenital hyperbilirubinemia, even though they never posted the resource about it, my mother and I departed for BOS. After fighting through the never-ending Boston traffic, I arrived at BOS a little bit after 16:10. After saying bye to my mother, I made a quick pit stop at the bathrooms before heading to security. Despite the terminal being fairly busy, there was no line for the ID checks. After getting checked, I was told to follow the basket ball player, where I sat in a slow moving line to use the new, automated bag screening devices.

Once through security I had a quick walk around, before heading to gate A7.

Image N398DN, the 1.7 year old A321 that would be ferrying me to DTW

Image Assorted DL tails

Once at the gate, I sat down and completed a formative quiz (nongraded, optional quiz that is posted every Friday based on the material that we covered during that week's classes). As I worked on my quiz, 20 minutes to boarding was announced. The gate agents also announced that the flight was 100% full, and they needed people to gate check their bags.

At 17:04, boarding began. Boarding was done similarly to DTW, but when they started boarding by row, it was done in groups of 3 rows. After a little bit of a wait, I was able to board the plane, and I made my way to seat 29A.

Onboard
As boarding continued, I thought that I was going to get lucky and have an empty middle seat next to me. Sadly, the man sitting in the window seat in front of me was actually sitting in the wrong seat, and when the person assigned to 28A arrived, he was asked to move into the empty seat next to me.

Image DL E170

At 17:34 the captain made his welcome aboard announcement, and 3 minutes later the boarding doors were closed. At 17:39, we began to smoothly push back from the gate, the engines quietly hummed to life, and the safety video began to play. A few minutes later, we started to taxi towards runway 22R

Image Assorted AA birds

Image AA, WN and AK in the distance

Image EI A333

Image TP A21N

At 17:54 we pulled onto runway 22R and executed a smooth takeoff from BOS.

Image BOS

Image BOS islands, barges, and cool sediment pattern.

Climb out from BOS was relatively smooth, with just a few bumps. Once we climbed through 10,000 feet I pulled out my laptop and began to work on a SOAP note (patient care documentation) assignment and then watch through a lecture on trauma ultrasound. While I was watching the lecture, the FA came around with beverages and snacks. While I passed on the beverage, I was glad to see that they had Biscoff cookies, and I gladly helped myself to one.

Image Finally! A Biscoff cookie

Over Buffalo NY we hit some bumps, but otherwise the flight was smooth.

At 19:00 we began our descent into DTW

Image Farm fields with an interesting canal

As we descended through through the clouds, it became fairly turbulent, although as soon as we emerged from the clouds it smoothed out. At 19:29 the flaps came down, and 3 minutes later our gear dropped into place

Image The view on final approach

Image

As we began our final approach we began to experience some turbulence. At 19:34, we executed a moderately firm, bumpy landing into DTW. After swiftly exiting the runway, we began to taxi to the gate

Image DL special livery

Image DL A359 gearing up for a long trek somewhere

At 19:40 (right on time), we pulled into gate A12. It seemed to take a while for debarkation to begin. Once I got off the plane, I made my way to the bathroom, before hopping on the US Parking shuttle to head back to my car. Once back at the car, I made my way up to the Al-Sultan restaurant for dinner, before getting stuck in the parking lot because I had either flooded the engine or accidentally activated the immobilizer on my Subaru.

Overall Weighted Score
Image
3.55/5

Summary
DL got me from point A to B on time, and with a reasonable level of service, and at the end of the day, that's all that really matters.
Up next on my docket for TRs is my originally scheduled trip back to BOS, which will represent my first time flying with B6. After that, I will hopefully have an international trip in February to write about (although that is very much TBD and dependent on COVID case numbers and restrictions).

Logbook and Previous Trip Reports

This chart offers a comparison of all the short haul flights that I have taken.

2021
A Return to the Skies DL DTW-MKE-DTW

2020
Flying Into the Future Part 3: Delta ALB-DTW-ALB

2019
Flying into the Future Part 2: Southwest ALB-BWI-ALB
Flying into the Future Part 1: Delta ALB-DTW, American DTW-PHL-ALB
Onwards and Upwards Part 2: Air Canada TLV-YUL-BOS
**No Flights** Onwards and Upwards Part 1.5: The Final Days before Leaving the Country
Onwards and Upwards Part 1: Swiss and El Al BOS-ZRH-TLV

2018
The Milwaukee Way WN BOS-MKE-BOS
Porting it to and from Toronto
Southwest to Milwaukee and Back (with a surprise)
Air France, CSA Czech Air, and Alitalia to Prague, Bratislava, and Budapest

2016
From my Archives: Summer '16 rescheduled and delayed with Iberia, Vueling, and British Airways

2015
From my Archives Summer '15 Shuttle America: Do they actually meet Delta's Standards?

2014
From my Archives: Summer '14 Returning from Israel One of the Only Ways Available El Al
From my Archives: Summer '14 Outward bound to Poland and Israel with LH
From my Archives: Winter '14 From Sunny Spain to Snowy Boston, KLM and Delta to Boston
 
SESGDL
Posts: 3147
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:25 am

Re: A Long Weekend's Reprieve: DL DTW-BOS-DTW

Wed Oct 13, 2021 2:00 am

Great report!

Jeremy

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