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Flying I

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  • Flying I

    My parents have been promising to take me to the Udvar Hazy Center since we heard about it. When FlyI announced their $69 CHS-IAD service, we decided to take advantage of it.

    We decided to fly in to IAD on FlyI but out of DCA on DL, since they were the same price. Before I made the FlyI reservations, I checked to make sure the DL flight was still $79 (incl. taxes). It was. I made the reservations on FlyI (which was so easy!!!) and then went back to DL. In that 10 minute time period, the fare had gone up to $486 per person!!!!
    We made our reservations on FlyI coming home too. In order to avoid paying $95/person, we reserved seats on the 6:25 pm flight, which was still $69.

    I was a little worried: when we went to select our seats, there were only 4 others on the CHS-IAD leg (not counting blocked off seats at the front and the exit) and no one else on the flight home!!!!

    We got to the airport and checked in. There was no line. The woman at the counter was very friendly, and the whole process took less than 2 minutes (no joke!).
    We proceeded to the food court to get some breakfast, since we had an hour to kill and there was no line at security.
    After breakfast, we proceeded to the security line (only ~10 ppl at this point). My mom and I went through, but my dad's bag had some trouble. It turns out the tag (an LLBean tag!) had a "chemical trace." Right...
    We were among the last ones to board the CRJ-200.

    August 6, 2004
    Independence Air
    Scheduled dep.: 10:00 AM
    Actual dep.: 10:15 AM
    Scheduled arr.: 11:29 AM
    Actual arr.: 11:40 AM
    Seat 4A

    I was impressed with the nice, blue leather seats that FlyI had installed. Very comfortable! Despite what I had seen on the website 1.5 months before, this flight was 100% full. Every seat was taken!! The f/a was very friendly and went around the plane, chatting with the customers. Unfortunately, it was a little hard to understand her, as she had a thick asian accent. We puashed back as the security recording played. It was pretty cheesy: about being on the left and right sides of the plane (and of politics). I turned to my parents, who were sitting behind me and said, "I don't think everyone on here gets this."
    My parents laguhed and I turned back around. Then, the girl sitting next to me (she looked college age--maybe older) said, "What don't you think everyone gets?" I had trouble containing my laughter.
    Anyway, we taxied out almost to the runway and the pilot came on and told us there was congestion in Dulles and we would have to sit on the ground for 20 minutes. After about 15 minutes, we taxied to the runway and took off. It was very cloudy, but takeoff was not bumpy at all. Literally--there wasn't one single bump!
    The f/a began the beverage service. She came around with a pad and pencil to take everyone's order. Then, she came around with the snack basket. Then, she came around with a drinks tray. I had seen something like this before, but the f/a took orders for 4 ppl, then went and got them, then brought them out on a small tray. This tray had cupholders though!
    Shortly after this, we landed in Dulles and pulled up to our gate. (A3 I believe).

    We went to the Udvar Hazy center from the airport. Then to downtown, where we spent the rest of the weekend. At 3:30, we hopped in a cab on our way to Dulles.

    We pulled up and went to check in. Although the building has a cool design, it is a little bit dated. We went through security, which took only 10 minutes, despite the fact that there were almost 200 people in the line ahead of us!!!
    We hopped on one of those funny looking busses to take us to Concourse A. We walked down to our gate. The 4:25 flight to CHS was boarding. We walked up right as they were finishing and asked if we could get a seat on it. "WE'RE CLOSED!!!" one gate agent yelled at us as if we had been pestering her for 10 minutes rather than 10 seconds. She was pushed aside by another gate agent who was very friendly: "Yeah...we just closed, but the flight was completely full, so I wouldn't have been able to put you on anyway. Sorry."
    I decided that I wanted to walk to see concourse B, so my parents decided they would come along to see if there were any better food options in B, as we hadn't had lunch. The B concourse was clean, new, and empty, despite the fact that several widebody jets (including a Virgin A346!!!) were waiting at the gates. We had lunch at the California Pizza Kitchen and then walked back to our gate.
    I could tell that Concourse A was older and had not been in such excelent shape, but it seemed FlyI has done a nice job fixing it up. It was very crowded, so FlyI's loads must be getting better.
    We sat and waited until our flight boarded.

    August 8, 2004
    Independence Air
    Scheduled dep.: 6:25 PM
    Actual dep.: 7:35 PM
    Scheduled arr.: 8:10 PM
    Actual arr.: 8:55 PM
    Seat 4A

    There were only 4 open seats on the plane. We got on 5 minutes late. Then, the girl next to me noticed the toilet wasn't flushing, so that took an extra 10 minutes. While this went on, the flight attendent came around and took drink orders. We had the same security recording as the trip up. We taxied out and sat in the same spot for ~5 min. Then, the captain informed us that runway stuff was screwed and they were gonna put us in a line that he couldn't see yet, but he assumed was at least 20 planes long! We waited for about an hour before we were able to turn on to the runway. On takeoff, I counted the planes in the line. There were 21 and 3 more moving towards the line!
    We took off (another smooth takeoff!) to the north, turned south, and headed home. The snacks were passed out by a girl sitting in the front row. She looked to be about 12. By the way she talked to the f/a, I kind of assumed it was her daughter. The f/a passed out the drinks after that.
    The flight was very uneventful.
    We touched down in CHS almost an hour late.

    Service: 9/10 (would be 10, but that one gate agent...)
    Aircraft: 8/10 (if it weren't for those dern windows!!!)
    Facilities: 7/10 (main terminal aging a little, but the FlyI concourse was cool!)
    Overall: 8.5/10 (the delays weren't their fault)

    The verdict:
    FlyI is the best choice (and the cheapest!) at CHS and I will continue to fly them if they continue to fly where I want to. I would reccomend them to anyone. Their service is great!

  • #2
    Great review! Would have loved some photos though, but whatever!
    I have one question though; is it pronounced "Fly one" or "Fly I" (like in "I am"??) Just curious, hehe


    • #3
      Independence Air hence 'Fly I(ndependence)

      What did you think of the Udvar-Hazy center?


      • #4
        Originally posted by Greg
        Independence Air hence 'Fly I(ndependence)
        Ah! Thanks Greg


        • #5
          Originally posted by Greg
          What did you think of the Udvar-Hazy center?
          It sucked.


          It was awesome!!!
          I am not really so interested in fighter jets and stuff, but I even enjoyed seeing those! That was the first time I had seen a concorde, a 707 and just about everything there up close! (except for the blackbird--I saw one in Tucson) The observation tower was amazing too!
          The architecture was awesome too. (that's my second interest)

          That is definitely one of (if not the) coolest museum I have EVER been to!