Friday, March 28, 2008

Virgin America


My first flight on Virgin America...
So I just returned from New York for Easter,and went to and old friends wedding,using
Virgin America as my means of getting there.
The website is very simple and easy to navigate,also Virgin sends you emails 24hrs before you fly,with a link attached to check in..
So I will start with the moment I walk into Terminal 6 at LAX..I see the counter in front of me,I immediately look for a line ,security red ropes ,huge snaking lines of some sort, anything that usually distracts me from getting to the counter to check in.So what do I see???? nothing ..just counter space and ATM like kiosks ..I walk up to one.I'm basically familiar with these things because I have flown Diablo Delta..(as I like to call them ) for quite some time now.Anyway I swype my credit card and key in my one bag.and presto!!!! a small Card pops up the size of and Ipod.On it are all my flight stats.I walk two feet forward to the bag counter guy.He takes my bag reconfirms my ID and scans my bag BAR CODE onto my Stat card!!!..Now I say this with huge surprise because if any of you well know?..When one flies,the airlines still give your bag a sticker with you're name and bar code on it ala- FEDX..BUT and I mean BUT..They do not SCAN your bags BAR CODE..So they have NO WAY of tracking it down..There version of a bag search is very sketchy .Hence the loss of more bags this last year (2007) .Then any other year since flying has began.I then ask him if I can move my middle seat to and Isle or a window,he looks up at me with that "Charlie Brown" grimace and says no, I'm sorry sir this flights fully booked..Urgggg I mutter ..hmmm ok thank you I say .
Now I proceed off to my gate..Seriously Dreading the next phase of my trip..The TSA!!! ... I then get on line for the escalator ..yup a line,just for moving up stairs..Suddenly a polite TSA woman says to me" go this way to the elevator sir.".I was like whoa huh whah?(now whah is New York for "what" without the "T").I thought oh great" another weird rule search thingy, and I clearly fall into their "We Don't Profile" profiling scheme .Buy this time,I get on the lift with 5 0r 6 other people with the same exact look that I had, on there faces..We then arrive at the floor where I think the first people out of the Elevator door are going to end up like the opening of "Saving Private Ryan" so being the smart half Jew that Iam ..I step back and let some other poor bastard deal with being on point(that's going first). .nothing happens.Our Platoon gets sent right to the metal detectors and then woosh bam Keiser Sosa,we are all through and off to my magazine, water buying errands I go...:)
As I'm experiencing all this, my phone is ringing but I'm blasting my POD so I hear nothing and I peer down at my Blackberry and see a local 310 number that I don't recognize, so I return the call..Guess who answers ???..Virgin America!..yes. its a recording and there prompting me to go through all the basic steps..My heart stops,I think my bag is now on its way to Africa or China..Duh I know its a domestic airline but hey,I have had some pretty crappy experiences.
I then take my headphones off to think for a second,and all of a sudden I hear the paging system in the whole terminal going off and there calling my NAME to the GATE!!!!..Holy crap I couldn't even foster up one idea what was going on..I walk over to the gate which of coarse I cant find , and as I make my way over both men behind the counter look up at me at the exact same time and say my name, as in MR. blah blah????..I think"The Gig is up!!!.. RUNNNNNNNN."..then one of the guys says to me ..I wanted to let you know that I have a better seat for you on and isle in a Bulk-Head seat.....I basically froze with my jaw catching every fly in terminal 6...I just stood there for a second and said nothing..He then looks at me like.... does this guy speak the language?..I mumble a sigh of relief and say ..Ahhhh ye ye yes..That would be great"..did you just call my cell phone?.. He was like "yeah I did"..Hello can anyone say Happy customer ???..
They call the plane for boarding and in a basket at the front of our gate,is headphones "in Ear" and "out of Ear" ..Nice touch...I'm not surprised...I'm half expecting someone to carry me to my seat if i mutter my back hurts allot..I then breeze down the hall to the plane and walk on..As i look at the interior, the lighting is clearly a lot different then any other plane I have been on.Its basically mood lighting. Red Purple white and a bit of Blue.Its nice calming and a bit soothing,with good music playing..
The seats are all leather with a 8 or 9 inch monitor in front of you to pick movies ,watch TV, and listen to over 50 different CD's along with games a Chat room..and seat to seat texting..Oh did i mention you can order your drinks ?..free and paid, plus food to your seat???..yeah..big ahh yeah...no more stupid cart banging off my freakin elbows!!!!..Sweet baby jesus I'm thrilled...
My flight was basically standard..They are all pretty much the same aren't they?..Just end up where it says on the ticket and I'm happy.."No buzzing the tower Mav"
The return trip minus the phone calls and paging was the same as well..
Now I cant tell you who to book you're ticket with next time you fly.But I can tell you who I'm buying mine from ..