When this trip to the US was getting finalised, I decided we will fly Southwest Airlines for all our in-country flights. In every class of ours at ISB, we spoke of Southwest and how they do what they do and why they are the only airlines that never seem to have a dip in “doing well”.
So here we are on the 625, flying from New Jersey to Chicago. The experience of booking the ticket online was a breeze, constant reminders on checking in online were helpful and again easy to do, the kerb side check-in and no charge for two checked-in bags just very cool…. We did get the message that our flight was delayed by an hour so we came prepared for that. As soon as we got to the airport we realised the delay was for an hour and a half. The SW announcements were chirpier and happier, the system of getting people on board by groups worked well, not bothering to return a piece of the boarding pass saved time and bits of paper flying around and the free seating was more organised than our Indian fixed seating :):):)
The plane is old but clean, the trays do not wobble and while the air hostess is tired she does smile, genuinely. You have wi-fi if you pay for it and complimentary non-alcoholic beverages and some peanuts and crackers to go with them. Seats are comfortable and Indigo must take note – there is enough leg space so you don’t end up with your knees nearly getting crushed. The branding is awesome, from the stirrer that stirs with the heart shaped end to the tissues that tell you about the 70 destinations that SW takes you, to the sign as you enter the aircraft that says everything is designed for “you”.
Now the LUV is all pervasive but the experience was a little underwhelming because we were 25th in the queue and we took off nearly two and a half hours delayed from Newark 🙁 I was really expecting that besides the LUV we will also have an on-time take-off and landing – Indigo, you should take heart, while our knees jostle with the seat in the front, you do take off on-time and land on-time. Much appreciated.
There was still further delay in store .. at Midway, we were standing on the tarmac for an hour as the bay where our flight had to dock was not empty. Some credit to the pilots and the hosts/hostesses, not one of them left the plane and were standing around as we all exited waiting to answer any questions. Finally we reached our destination at midnight 🙁
Now Southwest have three more flights between Krishnan and I on this trip… we are waiting to be overwhelmed by LUV !