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Thread: Five Flights, Five aircraft types, one round trip and one airline

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    Member viapanam's Avatar
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    Five Flights, Five aircraft types, one round trip and one airline

    Just returned from a RDU-ATL-DET-AMS-ATL-RDU trip. There are few highlights flying Delta, but two follow.

    First, on five legs I had five different types. RDU to ATL was an MD-88. I still like the 3-2 seating on the aged twi jet, and it remains on of the quietest planes (in forward cabin of coach) in the air. From ATL to DET we had B757-200. The B757 is one of my least favorite aircraft types - too many passengers for a single aisle plane, and I can't wait for the day it sees its last revenue flight. The trans Atlantic leg from DET to AMS was an aging B767. I love this plane; with its 2-3-2 layout, I think it is the most comfortable long haul plane in the sky. No one is more than one seat from the aisle, and 80% of the seats are either aisle or window. Sadly, both Delta and American's B767 fleet are showing their age. As one passenger across the aisle innocently asked the FA, "where do I watch the movie?" expecting a seat back IFES.

    On the return, from AMS to ATL was an A330. This is certainly a more passenger friendly plane from an entertainment perspective, with the seat back IFES. I quite enjoyed the flight map, which is all I ever use (flying time is reading time and catching up with TV shows on my iPad). Other than that, well, how much can one expect in coach. Last leg was a B737 from ATL to RDU. No point in worrying about whether you like the B737 or not - they are ubiquitous in the US carrier fleets.

    The other point of interest was the new international terminal at ATL. We landed on the day after it opened. To be candid, I was singularly unimpressed. I lived in Atlanta when Terminal E was opened for the Olympics in 1996, and for the life of me, I can not figure out why they built Terminal F, other than perhaps the direct access from the interstates (unlike the other terminals, it is a separate terminal where you can enter and exit directly into and out of Terminal F. Other than that, it took over 30 minutes to get through immigrations and I saw nothing innovative in the international arrival procedure.

    Anyway, nice to fly on five different types in an otherwise dreadful Delta experience (back to AA for my next two international trips).

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    Why was the experience otherwise dreadful? DL has better customer service than either AA or UA for that matter these days....
    It's the fares, stupid

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    Quote Originally Posted by viapanam View Post
    The B757 is one of my least favorite aircraft types - too many passengers for a single aisle plane, and I can't wait for the day it sees its last revenue flight.
    I love the 757, though admittedly I'm speaking from a pilot's perspective--the -200 is overpowered, climbs fast, and it will get right up into the high 30's with no problem. Now, from a passenger perspective, I have to agree with you--too many folks for a single-aisle airplane. If you haven't done so yet, you ought to experience the 757-300. Waiting for all 216 people to get off the thing is a nightmare. Just when you think everyone's off, here come some more people. I swear it seems like they've rolled stairs up to the aft door and people are getting on the thing, just to walk out the front door! The -300 doesn't quite have the takeoff/climb/altitude performance of the -200, but it's still a nice flying machine.

    It sounds like quite a trip you went on. Were you going for business or just for fun?

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    Senior Member megatop412's Avatar
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    I'd love to fly the 753 just for the heck of it, see what it's like. I flew a 752 from LGA to PIT and loved it, very quiet, smooth ride

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    Administrator PhilDernerJr's Avatar
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    I worked with and flew on 757s for years, and was a big advocate FOR trans-atlantic flying on them. I still think there si no difference when it comes to length of flights, but I will say that the boarding and deplaning process can be a real annoyance on a large single-aisle, especially on the longer -300. My experience was always flying with soldiers, so they got on and off very fast, but scheduled flights....not a lot of fun.

    I flew Delta MD-80s a few times in the past month and was pleasantly surprised. Some passengers around me actually were saying how nice it was to be on a new plane! I was surprised to have heard that. The wifi is a huge plus as well to the new seats. A pretty comfortable ride....Delta, to me, is one of few legacy carriers doing things right these days.

    I was in MCO and saw a ton of Delta 753s for the first time...I really enjoyed them. Also saw some United 753s with winglets...looks so odd to me.
    Email me anytime at [email protected].

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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil D. View Post
    Also saw some United 753s with winglets...looks so odd to me.
    If you flew with soldiers on ATA -300's the UAL 753's you saw may be the same ones. Aircraft numbers 860 and above are all ex-ATA birds.

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    Administrator PhilDernerJr's Avatar
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    I was with North American's 757s and 767s.
    Email me anytime at [email protected].

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    Member viapanam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Art at ISP View Post
    Why was the experience otherwise dreadful? DL has better customer service than either AA or UA for that matter these days....
    Partly it is just pure "what you are used to." For the past 15 years, I have flown to and from Europe 2 to 3 times per year. I realized that this was the first time I had not flown American in all that time. Why? Well, we have a non-stop from RDU to LHR (used to be LGW); I am hooked by the mileage program and staying Platinum; and I like American. The other part of just poor service. For example, I have always order a diabetic special meal when I travel. On the outbound, they served the specials before starting any of the food and beverage service. So ... if you wanted a beer or glass of wine with your meal, you either waited 30 minutes till the drink card started service and got to you, or you did without. Usually, AA serves the specials roughly at the same time as regular meals. On the return, even though my boarding pass clearly stated special meal, they didn't even bother to put it on the plane - which resulted in a whole different nightmare. Things like that made the flight dreadful. And oh yes ... the last part is purely emotional - I can never forgive Delta for what they did to Pan Am in 1991. (Here, give me all of what remains of your Atlantic route system and we'll help you get back in the air in Latin America ... oops, thanks for the routes and just kidding about the support).

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    Member viapanam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by snydersnapshots View Post
    It sounds like quite a trip you went on. Were you going for business or just for fun?
    It was a business trip - although flying for me is always fun. I am one of those people who have always felt most comfortable and most relaxed in a plane. I recall more years ago than I like to admit, flying home on a World Airways B707 with a student group, one of the chaperones said to me ... "For the past 45 days I have not seen you happier or more in your element than on this plane." Pretty much sums up my attitude about flying. There are occasional Saturdays when I will just fly RDU-DCA-BNA-DCA-RDU for the heck of it (and the AA miles). I dread the days when they all cell phones; peace and relaxation will be a thing of the past.

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