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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Virgin America 912 SFO-LAS 7 May 2009 by J. Augusta

I decided to book a Virgin America to give them a shot on this short flight from SFO-LAS. The times paired up well with my Virgin Atlantic flight, and the prices were cheap. I booked in First Class to get the true “experience.” Check in was a breeze and so was security. I hung out at the Northwest WorldClub (or whatever it’s called now) for awhile before heading to the gate. I was quite exhausted at this point, a full 19 hours into my day! Boarding was called about 30 minutes before departure. Upon boarding, I was impressed with the looks of this plane–purple lighting. It was very trendy looking! I took my seat in the 1st row which is separated by a colored plastic, semi see-through bulkhead. No pre-departure drinks were offered but we were given bottles of water. Boarding took the full 30 minutes as the flight was quite full. After a quick taxi we were in the air and the AVOD was turned on. (Wifi is also available, but I didn’t use it.) The seats were about the same as the Delta International 757 seats- recliner style with several angles and settings available. I reclined my seat back and popped out the TV monitor to watch some live satellite TV (which worked). Drinks and a snack box (yes for a 1hr flight!) were served. I had to try the absinthe which they serve with Sprite, just to say I did! I must say it’s an acquired taste and I didn’t come close to finishing my mini-bottle. We were all laughing about how it’s not the smartest thing to serve in the air, even if this version is “only” 100 proof! The snack box contained three small tapas type items, a couscous salad, a tomato/mozzarella salad, and something else that I don’t remember. It wasn’t the best but is a nice touch for such a short flight and beats the Continental bag of peanuts. Before I knew it, we were ready to land. VX uses the B gates now so it was a small hike to baggage claim. Bags were off in short order and I shortly was on my way to the hotel. Overall this was a great experience for a short flight, I’d like to give them a shot on a transcon to see how their service really holds up.