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Thread: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

  1. #1
    Administrator PhilDernerJr's Avatar
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    BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Mel and I went down to BWI for the weekend, going down there on Southwest from ISP. It was a very smooth and comfortable flight. With me doing so much flying for work, I was worried that it had ruined the amazing comfort level I reach when I fly for pleasure. But it didn't. We sat on the left bulkhead, and I put my sneakers up on the wall and had two Heinekens....it was amazing.

    On the way back, though, out 7:30pm flight on Sunday was delayed until 10:30pm due to weather, and Mel and I figured that the flight could easily end up being cancelled, so we booked a last minute Amtrak train...which ended up having a very decent fare on the Acela.

    I must say I was disappointed with Acela. I was on a regular regional coach to BWI last week from Penn, and the Acela is only slightly faster, but MUCH bumpier. Last week on the regional I was able to write and relax, but on the Acela, you are constantly bumping and getting tossed on every turn.

    Into Penn at 10:48pm, and to the N train for our short subway ride to Astoria.

    Mel and I got home and got into bed by 12:56am. Before actually going to sleep, we looked on Flight Aware to see what had happened to our WN flight. It turns out it had JUST landed at 12:52am. Imagine that. Instead of laying in bed, we'd have been making our way to the baggage claim, hoping our bags would come fast and that the shuttle to the LIRR would come in time to make the last 1:46am train back to Penn from Ronkonkoma...or wait until after 4am.

    From now on, I think all of my trips to DC, BWI or BOS will be on the train. More legroom, the ability to use our cell phones, and walking up toa bar. Lots of fun at a fair price.

    BIG THANKS TO JOHN KLOS FOR THE RIDE FROM RONK TO ISP!!!
    Email me anytime at [email protected].

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    Senior Member RDU-JFK's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    What was the service/seats like on Acela? How different are the layout of cars from standard regional service
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  3. #3
    Administrator PhilDernerJr's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    The seats were hardly different. Still 2x2, cloth, and that's it. The only difference we saw on the Acela was a bumpier ride and we got in 20 minutes earlier than we would have on the regional. The "service" is no different.
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    Senior Member Mateo's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Door-to-door, Amtrak usually beats flying (especially if the flight involves something far out like Islip, Dulles, or Providence). With the NEC going all-reserved all-the-time, there's no more worrying about sitting on your bag in a vestibule somewhere, although the regional sells all sitting surfaces as seats (i.e., each table in the cafe car counts as 4 pax), while Acela sells only the number of chairs. Acela also has an AC outlet at every seat, which is a huge difference-maker compared to an airline.

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    Administrator PhilDernerJr's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Mel and I sat at a table. It wasn't bad. I arm wrestled everyone at the table and destroyed them.
    Email me anytime at [email protected].

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    Senior Member lijk604's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Phil/Mel, no problem!

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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    I've been up and down the NEC many times on both Acela and Regional trains, and I have to say, the bumpiness is really luck-of-the-draw except for a couple of sections in CT where the track is a mess and it's bumpy no matter what train you take. I don't know enough about trains to know what the variables are, but I don't think it's an Acela-specific problem.

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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Phil, most likely you were in a set that the engineer pulled what I like to call a power stop which created some flat spots on the wheels. Try riding at SEPTA Silverliner IV on the R1 Airport Line doing 70. Those Acela sets were smooth at one time, the same thing will happen to NJT Comet VI Bilevels. I rode them the first day of service and they were as smooth as the Acela's when they went into service. I know the Acela sets did have problems with the struts, but I believe Alstom helped straighten that all out.

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    Moderator mirrodie's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    PHl is probably dead on regarding the flat spots. Wheels sets need to be trued from time to time for that reason.

    Regarding the seats, the last time we rode, I think it was Acela or the North East Regional up to Boston, I thought the seats were incredible compared to any airlines coach. THe room you get is comparable to most domestic US J seats.

    I was pretty impressed with the roominess of the seats. But as you know, leather or cloth doesn;t do anything for me.
    And I, I took the path less traveled by
    and that has made all the difference......yet...
    I have a feeling a handle of people are going to be very interested in what I post in the near future.

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    Administrator PhilDernerJr's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Yes, Mirrodie, I am falling for trains for the same reason. Though that ride was a little bumpy, I've been on trains a bit lately and LOVE the legroom I get. One thing I've always said was that flying would be easier if people just had a little more space....and the trains accomplish that.
    Email me anytime at [email protected].

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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Phil--

    Glad the flights were good on WN. WN never cancels flights. We just delay, delay, delay. If we do cancel flights we only do it if we are sure our aircraft cannot operate the entire route for the day. If only one leg is screwed up, then we just delay the flight.

    Considering your flight was one of the last flights of the day there was pretty much 100% guarantee your flight would not cancel, because that aircraft was needed in ISP the next morning.

    That has been my most asked question working the gates "Your gonna cancel the flight I just know it..." When guess what we are boarding the flight later on, maybe delayed, most likely but we still do it....

    I was working that night in STL and our flight 263 STL-TUL was delayed until 4:20am because of the weather in BWI and that was where the aircraft was coming from, very long night. You got lucky with that delay haha ours were much longer..

    Alex
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    Senior Member hiss srq's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex T
    Phil--

    Glad the flights were good on WN. WN never cancels flights. We just delay, delay, delay. If we do cancel flights we only do it if we are sure our aircraft cannot operate the entire route for the day. If only one leg is screwed up, then we just delay the flight.

    Considering your flight was one of the last flights of the day there was pretty much 100% guarantee your flight would not cancel, because that aircraft was needed in ISP the next morning.

    That has been my most asked question working the gates "Your gonna cancel the flight I just know it..." When guess what we are boarding the flight later on, maybe delayed, most likely but we still do it....

    I was working that night in STL and our flight 263 STL-TUL was delayed until 4:20am because of the weather in BWI and that was where the aircraft was coming from, very long night. You got lucky with that delay haha ours were much longer..

    Alex
    That to me presentrs a safety and operational issue. Without going into detail I disagree with that if it is indeed the way WN does it.
    Southwest Airlines-"Once it pop's it's time to stop" Southwest Airlines-"Our Shamu's are almost real" Southwest Airlines -"We blow our top real easy" Southwest Airlines- "You can't top us..... really"

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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    How Ryan?


    We have been doing it for a long time, would not the FAA have flagged us if they thought it was a safety and operational issue? What is so unsafe about delaying a flight?

    Alex
    www.southwest.com Bags Fly Free. Anytime, Anywhere on Southwest Airlines. Share the LUV!

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    Senior Member hiss srq's Avatar
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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Quote Originally Posted by Alex T
    How Ryan?


    We have been doing it for a long time, would not the FAA have flagged us if they thought it was a safety and operational issue? What is so unsafe about delaying a flight?

    Alex
    It is not soo much a safety issue but an operational issue I would think. Overflight seems like it would be a better deal. To keep delaying and delaying and elaying puts crews and planes out of place. Sometimes you just have to say lets cancel is the bottom line. The way you made WN out to sound is the big balls airlines commercial.
    Southwest Airlines-"Once it pop's it's time to stop" Southwest Airlines-"Our Shamu's are almost real" Southwest Airlines -"We blow our top real easy" Southwest Airlines- "You can't top us..... really"

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    Re: BWI-ISP on Southwest, then BWI-Penn on Amtrak Acela

    Ryan-

    You have to realize we are a point to point airline, we cancel one leg, we have to cancel 3 or 4 other flights on top of THAT.


    If they had cancelled the RDU-BWI flight, which is what made it delayed in the first place, it would have cancelled RDU-BWI, BWI-BUF, BUF-BWI, BWI-STL and STL-TUL.....

    Delaying did not put our planes out of place, it simply delayed it. CANCELLING would have really screwed up our system for the next day.

    Why cancel when we know we can get the plane to the destination, later yes but it gets there.

    Don't want to take this off topic, sorry folks.

    Alex
    www.southwest.com Bags Fly Free. Anytime, Anywhere on Southwest Airlines. Share the LUV!

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