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rleiro
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MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 6:32 am

¡Hola A.netters!
For Venezuelans traveling to Miami is a sort of pilgrimage that we have to do at least once in our lives. Either for business or pleasure, Miami is our main destination since the early 80s when VIASA and Pan Am offered up to eight flights a day in DC-8 and 747, and nowadays with American Airlines, Aeropostal and Santa Barbara Airlines services in 737, 757 and A300 with a total of 6 flights a day.


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Photo © Ricardo Haddad
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Photo © Bob Garrard



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Photo © Sun Valley Aviation
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Photo © Anthony Russo



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Photo © Suresh A. Atapattu
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Photo © Enrique Perrella



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Photo © Ben Wang



This is my very first trip report in Airliners.net, I hope that you like it inasmuch as I did writing for all of you.



After spending 5 days in Florida (specifically in Fort Lauderdale), just shopping, sightseeing and having fun during thanksgiving, it was the time to return to Venezuela. During my stay I was able to visit Las Olas and Atlantic Boulevards, as well as take advantage of bargains at Sawgrass Mills  biggrin 




Las Olas Boulevard


Atlantic Boulevard


Sawgrass Mills Mall

After getting up, having breakfast, finishing the packing of my suitcases and doing some last-minute errands, I checked out and took the Dodge Avenger that I rented. After riding over 1 hour along the I-95, I returned the car and took the shuttle bus to the airport.



You will wonder why I took the 7:40 pm flight if I could perfectly take the 5:05 pm Flight (Flight 903, Airbus A300). Basically, there were two reasons: the last time I took this flight I got 8 hours of delay, and also I wanted to try if I could get a ride in a wingleted 757 (Besides, the fare was a lot cheaper in my flight)  dollarsign 



In this opportunity, as I arrived quite early to my flight, I decided to give it a try to the Check-In Self Service. The system worked perfectly for me. It was quick and I could confirm that the flight was 100% loaded (so my chances of changing to a better seat were gone!  hissyfit  ) My seat assigned was the 23F, and I had to be at the Gate D49 at 18:20. After dropping my suitcases in security, I just walked around for a while. I could see a scale model of the airport as how it will be in a few years... Quite impressive indeed  eyepopping 



As it was Monday after thanksgiving, and there was a lot of people in the security line (besides the chance to try my new camera in the terminal) I passed through security. Although the area was crowded, the screening was quick, and way better than in my past experiences. Finally, and after a 5 minute walk along the Terminal, I finally arrived to the D Concourse!  relieved 





This was my first time in this area. Even if it is not that new, I have to say that I found it enormous, comfortable and properly sized for the traffic that Miami has. However, I could see that the restaurants are not enough, and that all of them were crowded all the time. The set of sculptures called Got any Jacks? by Donald Lipski gives to the Concourse a local touch... but in my opinion it makes the concourse to look like a trophy room of a big house!  laughing 



After having a soda and setting in a place nearby Gate D49, I could take my camera and start making some spotting.  hyper 


A view of the airport from gate D47... AA all the way!


A Learjet 60 taking off from Runway 12


American Eagle Flight to Nassau (one of the several flights a day they have)


The Repairbus Flight to Caracas (Flt. 903)


Two DC-10's in maintenance (Arrow Air Cargo and Varig Log)


A mighty AA 777-200



As the boarding time was coming closed, I checked if my flight was on time, and walked to the gate, when I saw a Beautiful 757-200 wingleted The Spirit of American. I thought that this one was assigned to Flt. 2133, but to my disappointment it was bound to Port of Spain!  sigh 



The remaining hour I had a snack and chat with some passengers who were starting to gather around the gate. At 6:20 our flight was called and the boarding began in our 757 (not wingleted!). The Boarding was relatively rapid and ordered.



By 7:15 all passengers were boarded when the captain announced that the connection flight from Orlando was delayed due to weather, and that were 20 passengers to Caracas in that flight. After some other announcements along one hour, the passengers arrived and the doors were closed.


Another 757wl from my window...  cry 

Pushback was started, and safety video in english was played (By mistake, the crew put the safety video in French also!, but it was quickly put in Spanish). After a relatively short and fast taxi, we were aligned on Runway 12, and the plane lifted off. The takeoff as in any 757 was quite powerful and we quickly climbed to FL 370.



The inflight movie was Casino Royale, and CBS Eye on American after the movie. The crew was really nice and warm (something quite uncommon today). The airplane was in excellent shape, it was clean and it did not look worn at all. Let's see next year when AA upgrades its 757 fleet and see if the changes are for better.



Dinner was served about one hour after we set at cruise level. The choices were Chicked with Pasta and Beef. I took the beef, which was very tasty, yet the muffin was unedible. Also, the catering from MIA forgot to put forks in the cutlery package. Fortunately the beef was tender enough to be held with the spoon  laughing .



Landing at Runway 10 was quite soft in a rainy night in Caracas. We left the runway via ECHO and parked at Gate 23, just next to the A300 that left Miami a few hours before. Curiously, next to the A300 there was a TAP A310, and in the International Concourse there was an Air Canada A319 (Toronto) and a Copa 737 (Panama City). Delta 737 (Atlanta) was parked in a remote stand, next to Santa Barbara Airlines 757.


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Photo © Frank Robitaille
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Photo © Andres Meneses




Immigration line moved quick, and by 1:15 I was ready to take a taxi to go home.

In general terms I have to say that American Airlines offers the best service to Miami. In this opportunity, I was greatly surprised with a really nice and warm crew, a nice and clean airplane and a tasty (yet forkless) meal.

I hope that you enjoyed this trip report. I would like to read your impressions about it. Thank you.

Saludos,

Roberto.
A proud SVZM Spotter!
 
44k
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 7:05 am

Thanks, excellent TR.
 
davescj
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 7:45 am

Great TR and awesome pics!

Dave
Can I have a mojito on this flight?
 
triple7man
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 8:00 am



Quoting Rleiro (Thread starter):
The Repairbus Flight to Caracas (Flt. 903)

Very good for your first report. But why do you call it the Repairbus?

Quoting Rleiro (Thread starter):
A mighty AA 777-200

Beautiful nana nana nana (777 in Japanese)
Have you kissed a 777 today?
 
B747forever
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 8:50 am

Really nice first TR.

The pics are really good.

Really sad that you didn't got any 757 with winglet. They were all around you and still you didn't got any.

Quoting Rleiro (Thread starter):
could see a scale model of the airport as how it will be in a few years... Quite impressive indeed

Wow, that is really impressive. MIA will be really nice when everything will be finished.

Thank you for sharing.

B747forever.
Work Hard, Fly Right
 
aaden
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 9:27 am

very nice TR

I loved the pics
 
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rleiro
Topic Author
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 12:32 pm

Hello Guys. Thank you so much for your comments. Greatly appreciated.

Quote:
Very good for your first report. But why do you call it the Repairbus?

Well, I nickname AA A300s "The Repairbus" for a comment a captain made after my 8-hour flight delay in last June. When unboarding in CCS I asked him how often these tech delays were, and he answered me that they were so frequent that he nicknamed the A300 "The Repairbus", so I do too.  Wink

Best Regards,

Roberto.
A proud SVZM Spotter!
 
PlunaCRJ
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 12:46 pm

Excellent TR. Thanks for posting.

Maybe next time you´ll get the chance to ride some 757 winglets  Smile
 
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ORL777
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 1:05 pm

Hey Roberto!!!


Nice trip report, and also nice pics also, well about winglets 757 just bad luck in this time but maybe next time sure you will have winglets!!

Anyway nice report and see you soon!!

Saludos
 
Avianca
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 2:41 pm

very nice report! or better to say just great !!!

saludos desde Maiquetia!
Avianca
Colombia es el Mundo Y el Mundo es Colombia
 
BritPilot777
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 5:20 pm

Nice report and good pictures to go with it!

BritPilot777
Forever Flight
 
tommy767
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 11:01 pm

Wow. AA still serves meals from MIA-CCS! That is under 3 hrs in flying time. Great report BTW!
"KEEP CLIMBING" -- DELTA
 
DALelite
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sat Dec 01, 2007 11:32 pm

I did enjoy your TR very much...

greetz from DALelite
They loved to fly and it showed..
 
luisde8cd
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sun Dec 02, 2007 5:24 am

Hey Rleiro,

Great TR, I love the pics, great quality. As usual your flight was packed, AA must be making loads of $$ with its CCS route. I just wish INAC and DOT would work together and give us the extra frequencies that we need between MIA and Venezuela.

Quoting Rleiro (Thread starter):
After having a soda and setting in a place nearby Gate D49, I could take my camera and start making some spotting.

Omg, that's such an ugly passport! Ugly coat of arms, thank god I got mine in 2005.

Saludos desde Monterrey,
Luis
 
buck3y3nut
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sun Dec 02, 2007 5:32 am

great report and good pictures too.
thanks for writing the report...
 
Avianca
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Joined: Tue Jan 25, 2005 5:33 am

RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sun Dec 02, 2007 7:26 am



Quoting Luisde8cd (Reply 13):
As usual your flight was packed, AA must be making loads of $$ with its CCS route.

I think not only on the MIA route... on all other routes as well!
Colombia es el Mundo Y el Mundo es Colombia
 
FMAL
Posts: 469
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sun Dec 02, 2007 11:14 pm

Great trip report Rleiro!

I just arrived from MIA myself, but I took AA 905, MIA-GIG. AA's coach cabin is horrible! The worst pitch I have ever seen on any airline, they don't have "Fragile" stickers to put on bags, staff not really that interested if you're having a good flight or not...but I think we had the exact same dinner, at least the picture looks like what I had at my flight this past Friday.

Terrible to leave MIA at any time, beautiful city and a great place to visit/live.

All the best!
 
abrelosojos
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Sun Dec 02, 2007 11:51 pm



Quoting Luisde8cd (Reply 13):
Omg, that's such an ugly passport! Ugly coat of arms, thank god I got mine in 2005.

= Only you Luis  Wink. Think the passport looks great ... mine is the same ... and one of the very few e-passport countries. TOTALLY HELPFUL!

Great first TR.

Cheers,
A.
Live, and let live.
 
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cybergus
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:58 am

Hey Roberto!

Great T.R man. The pictures are awesome. Miami and Ft.Laudardale are two amazing cities and of course the perfect destination for the Venezuelans (I must include myself in the list).

For my perspective the best way to go to MIA is LA, it is a shame that they are restricted with the schedules. I tried AA in my last trip to MIA and the only thing that was perfect was the 757 with winglets, as for the service it was pretty standard.

Cheers

Tavo
LAN Excellence in Flight
 
Mexicana757
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:59 am

Great trip report and pictures. Sorry you didn't get a wingleted 757. One of these days you will.  Smile
 
md90fan
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:33 am

Good stuff, did you visit Westonzuela y Doralzuela?

Quoting Rleiro (Thread starter):
American Eagle Flight to Nassau (one of the several flights a day they have)

~9
http://www.devanwells.blogspot.com/
 
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Coal
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 03, 2007 11:31 am



Quoting Rleiro (Thread starter):
Las Olas Boulevard

I love that cafe! It's one of the few in SoFla that sells Orangina

Quoting Rleiro (Thread starter):
This was my first time in this area. Even if it is not that new, I have to say that I found it enormous, comfortable and properly sized for the traffic that Miami has.

Yes, it is incredible that Concourse A is so old yet still manages to look so new

Cheers
Coal
Nxt Flts: SQ SIN-KIX | HD UKB-CTS | NH CTS-NRT | SQ NRT-SIN | AK SIN-DPS-SIN
 
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rleiro
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:41 pm

Hi Guys. Once again, thank you so much for your kind comments.

Quote:
I just wish INAC and DOT would work together and give us the extra frequencies that we need between MIA and Venezuela.

Yes, not only MIA and Venezuela, but also between FLL and Venezuela (CCS, VLN). I've heard that INAC granted Venezolana, the rights to fly to USA (they're going to use an ATA 757). The airplane is already in Maracaibo for its paintjob. Let's see now if INAC grants the long-awaited rights to Spirit for FLL - CSS, and AA MIA - VLN.

Quote:
Omg, that's such an ugly passport! Ugly coat of arms, thank god I got mine in 2005.

You'll have to change it now, as this is the new passport with the chip. It does not look too bad at all, although I prefer the old ones.  Wink

Quote:
AA's coach cabin is horrible! The worst pitch I have ever seen on any airline, they don't have "Fragile" stickers to put on bags, staff not really that interested if you're having a good flight or not.

I've had mixed experiences with AA. I agree that the pitch is not that good, but obviously in a 2.5 / 3 hr flight, is bearable, now a 9 hr flight is different. It's strange that there are no Fragile stickers, not only from AA, but also from other airlines. In terms of crew, I guess it is just luck. I've had AA flights in which the crew provided an indifferent and cold treatment to the passengers, while in others (like this one), the crew was amazing.

Quote:
For my perspective the best way to go to MIA is LA

LA offers a nice service and fares are not that expensive. However, I've never been able to fix a flight with them as their flight is on Mondays only. Who knows, I'll have to give it a try someday.

Quote:
I tried AA in my last trip to MIA and the only thing that was perfect was the 757 with winglets

You know very well what I think about this man...  Wink

Warm regards,

Roberto.
A proud SVZM Spotter!
 
ba319-131
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 03, 2007 10:16 pm

Great report, loved the pix!

Interesting they managed to forget some of the catering items, pretty dumb mistake to make.

Look forwards to more reports.

Regards

Mark
111 732 733 734 735 736 73G 738 739,7M8 BBJ 741 742 743 744 752 753 762 763 764 772 77L 773 77W L15 D10 D30 D40 AB3 AB6 312 313 318 319 320 20N 321 21N 332 333 342 343 345 346 359 351 388 CS1 CS3 I86 154 SSJ CRJ CR7 CR9 CRK 145 170 175 220
 
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cybergus
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Tue Dec 04, 2007 12:19 am

Quoting Rleiro (Reply 22):
flight is on Mondays only

Fridays too!.

Cheers

Tavo

[Edited 2007-12-03 16:19:37]
LAN Excellence in Flight
 
AA767LOVER
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 10, 2007 3:19 am

Actually, Scarebus is not all that bad. I found it quite comfortable on a few flights I've flown so far.
Does anyone know how long those will stay in AA's fleet? Hope nothing screws up! I still have 3 fllights to go on it! (GUA-MIA, and MIA-LIM and v.v.). The seat pitch is ok.
J.I. Tsui, American Advantage Member, United Mileage Plus (Premier)
 
QFKangaroo747
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 10, 2007 4:56 am

Thanks for an excellent trip report! Informed commentary, interesting pictures.

Quoting Rleiro (Thread starter):
The set of sculptures called Got any Jacks? by Donald Lipski gives to the Concourse a local touch... but in my opinion it makes the concourse to look like a trophy room of a big house!

Yes, it certainly does!
 
ZKSUJ
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 10, 2007 6:12 am

Nice report there, good pics too
 
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rleiro
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RE: MiAAmi - CarAAcas (Pictures Included)

Mon Dec 10, 2007 1:58 pm

Hi Guys, Thanks for your replies. They are greatly appreciated, and hopefully I will make more trip reports for the next year  Wink

Quote:
Actually, Scarebus is not all that bad. I found it quite comfortable on a few flights I've flown so far.

I agree with you. The airplane is quite comfortable, but its constant tech problems and delays are a problem in AA.

Quote:
Nice report there, good pics too

Thanks, glad you like it Big grin

Saludos,

Roberto.
A proud SVZM Spotter!

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