JFK-LAS-JFK on Delta 22-24 Dec 2009

Tue 22 Dec 2009
DL 731 JFK-LAS 5:40 PM – 9:17 PM 757-200 Seats 3B and 4A First Class

Thu 24 Dec 2009
DL 728 LAS-JFK 12:05 PM – 8:18 PM 757-200 Seats 3A and 3B First Class

This trip was a mileage run for my boyfriend and I tagged along. We were both upgraded at our respective elite level windows.

Both of these flights went very well in first class.  The outbound aircraft was delayed due to a late-arriving inbound aircraft and a delay in receiving the “performance data uplink” from Atlanta.  We departed about an hour late, but still arrived about 30 minutes early. The return flight departed a few minutes early and arrived nearly 45 minutes early. The outbound aircraft was also an older 757-200, without seatback in-flight entertainment, so the viewing options were limited.

However, both flights offered consistent on-board services.  We received a pre-departure drink service on both flights. Once we were in the air, we received hot towel service, drink service, meal service, and snack basket and repeated drink service the remainder of the flight. Both flights also had Gogo Inflight Internet. My laptop battery died after about three hours on the outbound as the aircraft had no power ports, but I was able to use my iPod Touch the remainder of the flight. The return aircraft had individual power ports, so I was able to use my laptop the entire flight.

The outbound flight meal was dinner and our choices were chicken pomodoro with side veggies, salad, roll, and pie, or vegetarian pasta with yellow tomatoes in a cream sauce, salad, roll, and pie.  The return flight was lunch and the choices were a chicken sandwich, chips, fresh fruit side, and a molasses cookie, or a salad (with grilled chicken, avocado, bacon, blue cheese, and tomato), breadsticks, fresh fruit side, and a molasses cookie.

Delta also has a new cocktail called “It’s Five O’Clock Somewhere.”  It’s made with orange juice, cranapple, rum, and a slice of lime.

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TRI-ATL-PHL on Delta 5 May 2009

DL 5326 TRI-ATL 830AM – 948AM Seat 1B CRJ-200
DL 1012 ATL-PHL 1232PM –  235PM Seat 25C Exit MD-88 with Gogo Inflight Internet

Today could have possibly gone differently, but the DL agents at TRI were proactive!  I arrived at TRI and started to check in at the kiosk, when an agent asked me to approach her and told me that she was putting me on a delayed 8:30 am flight to ATL because of low ceilings/weather delays.  She was afraid the 9:50 am would also delay and I might misconnect.  So I rushed through security, hit the restroom, and boarded.  She had assigned me 1B and I had no seatmate, so I was pleased.  We departed the gate at 9:25 am, one hour late, but 20 minutes earlier than my original flight.  The flight attendant was excellent.  Although the flight was scheduled to be 37 minutes en route, she offered a full beverage and snack service.  She was the kind of flight attendant that makes the others look badly!  We arrived ATL about 45 minutes later, around 10:10 am.  And I found out later that my original flight did leave on time and arrived about 20 minutes after my new flight, but I still appreciated the TRI agents proactively trying to prevent misconnects.

I had some extra time to spend in the Delta Sky Club near B10.  That is the small club, but it was a light crowd in the late morning.  I checked delta.com and saw my upgrade changes were absolutely nil.  I ended up being something like number six of 17 with no seats remaining!  I relaxed and ate pretzel mix and had a couple of Bloody Marys.

Boarding began promptly at gate B11, with first class and zone 1, then zone 2, etc.  Although first class was full, coach had 42 empty seats, including the middle seat in my row, so the guy in seat A and I in seat C were able to spread out, which was nice.  And the MD-88 exit row legroom was very good.

We pushed back on time and took off around 1:00 pm for a flight time of approximately 1 hour 25 minutes.  We had a full beverage and snack service in flight, but I had also purchased a sandwich before boarding, because I knew I’d be in coach.

The highlight of my trip today was that I finally got to try out the Gogo Inflight Internet service on my new iPod Touch for $7.95.  It took the iPod a few minutes to connect, but once the connection was made, all I had to do was open the Safari, log into the Gogo account I had set up in advance, and I was off!  I was able to send and receive e-mail, as well as surf the Internet and make posts to a frequent flier forum, Facebook, and Twitter.  Having the Internet made my flight go by so quickly and I felt like I’d accomplished something, too.  I will be a Gogo customer again every time it is offered.

We landed on time around 2:30 pm, but we did have to wait about 5-10 minutes for our gate, A13.

Upon deplaning, I passed through security, to zone 2 ground transportation to catch my shuttle to Dollar for my rental car to New Jersey.  I was nervous at first, because I am not confortable driving in areas with which I am not familiar, but the drive to Toms River was quite pleasant and I had no trouble getting there with Gigi, my Garmin nüvi®.  Once I exited the Philadelphia metro area, the 45-50 minute drive on Route 70 East was very rural and relaxing, until the Toms River area, where I finished my drive in on Route 37 East.