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Skybus CMH-SGJ-CMH

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  • Crunk415balla
    replied
    Originally posted by DAL767-400ER
    And I can't wait how the "baggage claim" will work out during a heavy Florida downpour, could be quite an enjoyable experience .
    I thought about that too. It's probably similar to boarding planes at SJC with the airstairs where tent like structures can cover the pax in rain or extreme heat.

    Leave a comment:


  • DAL767-400ER
    replied
    Judging by the vid, the plane sure makes good use of the airport's runway...
    And I can't wait how the "baggage claim" will work out during a heavy Florida downpour, could be quite an enjoyable experience .

    Leave a comment:


  • Crunk415balla
    replied
    Originally posted by Bok269
    May have something to do with the fact that they fly into very few mainstream airports, so spotters aren't there to catch them.
    Eh, I suppose. But you'd think the Ohio spotters would have caught pleanty by now!

    Leave a comment:


  • DeltaRules
    replied
    Takeoff from SGJ:

    Leave a comment:


  • Bok269
    replied
    Originally posted by Crunk415balla
    I saw Spirit of Columbus in SAN Sunday. Looks like Austin Powers designed it. Surprised there are so few shots of this airline up on the web.

    Nice report and shots!
    May have something to do with the fact that they fly into very few mainstream airports, so spotters aren't there to catch them.

    Leave a comment:


  • DeltaRules
    replied
    Originally posted by Airbus_A320
    The plane I did get was their Nationwide special scheme, is that the only one they have, or do they have other special schemes?
    The Nationwide scheme & the two that are in my report are the extent of their schemes. IIRC, they have two of the white ones & two of the orange.

    Leave a comment:


  • Crunk415balla
    replied
    I saw Spirit of Columbus in SAN Sunday. Looks like Austin Powers designed it. Surprised there are so few shots of this airline up on the web.

    Nice report and shots!

    Leave a comment:


  • Bok269
    replied
    Originally posted by Airbus_A320
    The plane I did get was their Nationwide special scheme, is that the only one they have, or do they have other special schemes? I would consider flying them someplace just for shits and giggles if I got a $30 fare or whatever if it wasn't for the fact they only place they go is CMH :rolleyes:
    Nothing against CMH... but I can't imagine there's too much to see there.
    Im waiting for them to announce HPN as a NewYork destination so i can give them a test run for 20 bucks.

    Leave a comment:


  • Airbus_A320
    replied
    I went by SGJ to catch Skybus when I was in Florida, and I love how their "terminal" is really just a plastic tent

    And I guess they bring TSA from JAX or whatever just to work that flight then they go back to wherever they came from.

    The plane I did get was their Nationwide special scheme, is that the only one they have, or do they have other special schemes? I would consider flying them someplace just for shits and giggles if I got a $30 fare or whatever if it wasn't for the fact they only place they go is CMH :rolleyes:
    Nothing against CMH... but I can't imagine there's too much to see there.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bok269
    replied
    Great report.

    Leave a comment:


  • DeltaRules
    started a topic Skybus CMH-SGJ-CMH

    Skybus CMH-SGJ-CMH

    Here's my first TR in a while. I'll go more into detail on the first leg & keep it simple on the return trip, as the service was similar on both flights. Some of the pictures are blurry...don't know why that happened, but sorry in advance.

    Ever since Skybus announced that they'd begin operations, I had wanted to give them a try. When they launched flights to St. Augustine, FL, which is an hour from our family's vacation house, we bought tickets & got an extra vacation to the Sunshine State. And I would get my Skybus trip.

    Skybus 95 CMH-SGJ/UST (the latter code used by SX)
    Airbus A319 N521VA "Spirit of Columbus"
    August 10, 2007

    We got to CMH at about 11am for our 1pm departure. We took our luggage to the ticket counter & as we had paid the $5 for our checked bags in advance, entered the line for the pre-paid luggage. From there, it was the typical deal with luggage; the bags were tagged & we dropped them off at the TSA machine. Afterwards, we grabbed lunch at Wendy's, went through security, and headed to the Skybus gate area on Concourse B. This is a new area located on the lower level just after the security checkpoint, below the gate area once used by TW & HP. There are four gates (B15, 17, 19 & 21), Skybus flight info screens & a Skybus customer service desk in this lounge. In addition, there were kiosks located throughout the gate area. Our flight would leave from B19.

    Map of CMH from port-columbus.com:


    Podiums for B19 & B21 (taken on the return trip):


    Our plane, N521VA, arrived from FLL at about 12:35. The passengers deplaned, and shortly after, the announcement was made that flight 95 to St. Augustine (not JAX or DAB as advertised) would board shortly. There are three "groups" on Skybus. Group 1 is for those needing assistance & those who shelled out the extra $10 for priority boarding. From there, I'm lost. Groups 2 & 3 seem to be randomly assigned, although it appeared that there were more people for 3 than 2.

    Boarding was, to put it mildly, chaotic. People scrambled to get in their respective lines, and we ended up about 2/3 of the way down the group 3 line, which snaked out of the ropes & back a distance the opposite direction. One thing we noticed but didn't do on this leg was what several people had done even when we got to the gate area; that is, sitting down in your group's line so you're the first on from that group. Going out onto the ramp for boarding was fun. I decided to board from the 1L door. Open seating is the name of the game on SX, which posed a problem, as the 5 people in our party ended up all over the plane. I found my way to seat 8A. The seats on SX are nice- new leather, with the seat pocket located at the top of the seatback instead of at the bottom, as I've always seen. The flight seemed to be at least 2/3 full, which came as a surprise.



    Once everyone was on board, the gate agent got on the PA & called for three passengers, none of which had answered. We pushed back at about 1:05, with the standard safety demo. We taxied to the end of 28L & were off and running.

    Downtown Columbus:


    As we reached 10,000, the PA announcements about the in-flight service began. Snacks were available for purchase from the menu, which is found in the back of the Skybus shopping magazine. Jana, the F/A on the PA, made the first of her many funny comments by noting that "If you need anything during our flight, despite some nasty rumors, pushing the call button above you is free of charge." The cart came through the aisle, and some passengers around me purchased items. At this point, I got my laptop out & watched an episode of CHiPs (I broke down & bought the DVDs), snapping a few pictures along the way.




    Midway through the flight, the announcement was made that the cart with shopping items would be coming through the aisle. The in-flight catalog Skybus has is similar to most Duty Free offerings I've seen flying internationally- watches, perfume/cologne, jewelry, toys...nothing too exciting. Today's featured item was some skin cream. Jana (clearly in her 20s), joked "it works wonders...I'm 43, but you could never tell!" Again, a few passengers bought items as the cart came through.

    Shortly after, we started descent into SGJ. The shopping magazines were collected & trash picked up. A few minutes later, we touched down & began the taxi to the ramp, which took about four or five minutes. Several ads were given over the PA, including offers to sponsor in-flight announcements & reminders to check skybus.com for more information about the airline. Jana's last joke of the day came as well, which went something like: "As a reminder, we do deplane using the front and rear doors, so any of you that are seated behind the window exits are welcome to deplane from the back door for an additional $3....(silence)....just kidding!"

    As we taxied, I noticed several E-2s at Northrop's ramp...or what's left of them:


    We then parked at the terminal. As I had found out when I drove up to SGJ on the 4th of July, there is no "terminal" at St. Augustine...there had been no need for one. Once SX announced they were coming, a large tent was put in place as the airline terminal. I found out on the way out that it does well for what it's used for, but as I would discover, it was different from anything I'd done before.

    The terminal at SGJ from the plane.


    The engines were shut down & once the boarding ramps were pulled (by hand) up to the plane, the passengers exited. When we got onto the ground, we were directed to a small waiting area under an awning next to the tent.


    This is SGJ's makeshift baggage claim. Under the awning, there is a rectangular area that was roped off that passengers would wait on all sides of. Shortly after everyone arrived there, the Luggage Express arrived on track 1.


    Once the tug came to a stop, rampers undid the ropes, and people walked over to the carts, pulling their bags off. From there, they either walked to their cars in the lot or into the terminal to the rental car booths. Before we left the airport, I took a few more pictures:

    The terminal:


    The Spirit of Columbus:


    __________________________________________________________________________________________________


    A319 N552SX
    August 20, 2007

    http://flightaware.com/live/flight/S...937Z/KSGJ/KCMH

    After 10 days down south, it was time to head home. We got to SGJ about an hour ahead of our flight & checked our bags, again taking advantage of the $5 prepay online.

    Skybus counter:


    To describe the inside of the terminal, before security, there are three booths (tables) for Avis, Hertz & Enterprise, the Skybus desk & a set of bathrooms. Past security, there are two waiting areas, each with their own boarding door. The area to the left is smaller, while the one to the right has a snack bar & a flat-screen TV. (Supposedly, despite Skybus' policy of no outside food on board, food bought at this snack bar can be taken on board.) Both doors have the same flight info sign in the picture above. When it's time to board, those wishing to board at the front of the plane use the smaller room, while those in the bigger lounge board at the rear. The whole terminal has a thick fish smell. Whether that has something to do with the tent or the air conditioning inside, I'm not sure.

    Once we made it past security, we camped at the front of the Group 3 line, learning from CMH where we were near the last to board. Our plane, one of the predominantly white 319s, landed at 2:50. When boarding began, it was the same deal as before; the mad rush to get in line, Group 1 & people needing assistance boarding, then 2 & finally 3.

    I boarded & took seat 10A. Almost immediately, I figured I was on one of the ex-Skyservice jets, as this plane's interior was very different than 521VA. The seats were black & once I sat down, I noticed audio controls in the armrest. I then looked up & saw panels for the drop-down video monitors. Also noticable was the lack of legroom on this plane compared to the other. This flight was also surprisingly full. Not 100%, but it appeared to be 75-80%.

    Interior shot during boarding, with condensation from the A/C:


    The boarding doors closed about 15 minutes late. The demo was completed as the engines started. The captain then came on & announced we'd be second in line for departure. After the previous plane departed, we backtaxied to the end of the runway & rolled immediately. We got off the ground with about 3,000 ft of runway remaining & climbed out to the north over Jacksonville.

    Again, the food was offered, followed later by the merchandise. I snapped a few more shots during this flight.




    The flight was smooth, but as we grew closer to CMH & descended, the skies grew darker. With a few minutes to go before landing, we bounced around pretty well for 20-25 seconds, to the alarm of some on the plane. We broke back out into haze & after a few more turns, were on final for 28L at CMH. Finally, we were back on the ground:


    Just after we touched down, rain started pelting the window. Taxiing to the gate, we were given the same ads as with the first flight. I then saw two other SX jets on the ramp, one of which caused us a short wait while it pushed & taxied out.

    WN jets pushing from Concourse A:


    Once the other jet moved, we taxied to the gate & the plane was shut down. As the ramps were pushed up to the plane, I put two & two together & realized that I would be getting off the plane into the monsoon that had just arrived. After a brief delay, everyone deplaned, and myself & several other passengers ended up using carry-ons as umbrellas. We got back in the terminal & after finding the rest of my family, we headed for baggage claim. On the way back up to the main level of Concourse B, I was able to get a shot of our plane on the ramp:


    Comments on Skybus:
    -Overall, I had a good experience. The service was fine for a 1 1/2 hour flight. The F/As seemed slightly disorganized at times, but did a good job. Jana (on the flight down) did a nice job & I liked how she had fun with her announcements. If the airline's going to be as nickel & diming as it is, it's nice to see that the crews have a sense of humor as is common with WN. I wondered if the attitude would be "get in, sit down, shut up & hang on", but it wasn't. I'd recommend Skybus to people.

    -I noticed that a one-way fare to CMH on Monday was $230. I wonder how many people are going to feel ripped off if they try & get a last minute ticket on the $10 airline, only to see that amount.

    -I'm not much of a fan of the Group boarding in that everyone seemed to crash toward the line when boarding was called & I'd like to know how you end up in 2 vs. 3. It's worth it for the fares, I guess. Then again, the only other time I've flown on an airline with open seating in recent years was on Pan Am v3 & they boarded by check-in number.

    -I was surprised at the number of people on the flight & waiting for the flight expecting an older jet or even a turboprop to pull up to the gate for the flight. Did anyone see that they're flying new planes?

    So that's it. I still have a few more pictures that I may upload if they're worth it, as well as a video of the takeoff from SGJ. Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed it.
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