I’ve been to Florida countless times already but the fact is that I haven’t ever left the airport for more than four hours… And this mileage run was no exception! Basically I’ve mentioned before that United has great fares to Florida from Seattle and the catch is that they require a same-day turn, so they’re perfect for mileage runs.
Basically I found a really cheap fare about 5 hours before departure (how that happened, don’t ask me!), and booked it since I had nothing to do on a Friday night anyway! I left work a little earlier, came home, showered, and was off to the airport just in time for boarding. SeaTac has a daily rate of $28 USD for parking, which isn’t bad, and most definitely cheaper than Uber or a taxi.
I made it to the airport around 16:30 for the 17:59 departure, with boarding beginning at 17:20.
I cleared security within a matter of minutes (I know… minutes, not seconds, there was a line this time!), and went to the United Club to grab a snack and relax a little before my flight. I’ve reviewed this lounge extensively, including here, and here, and here, and here!
Sadly the new United snacks haven’t made their way to Seattle.. yet.
I left the lounge after scheduled boarding time and was among the last people to board via Premier Access lane 1.
United Airlines 508
Seattle (SEA) – San Francisco (SFO)
13 March 2015
United’s Airbus A319 aircraft feature just eight seats in First Class – two rows with four seats each. Since I booked the mileage run literally five hours before departure, the only seat available was 1A. I know most frequent flyers LOVE 1A, but I really don’t… Why? Well for one, there isn’t plenty of legroom and there is no place to stow your personal item for take-off and landing, so in my opinion, 1A isn’t really that great.. on most aircraft.
This A319 featured United’s WiFi with free IFE through the United app.
Instead of asking what we would like for the pre-departure beverage, the lead FA just brought everyone water with a lime.
We pushed back ten minutes ahead of the scheduled departure time, it was a warm, cloudy day in Seattle.
We made it to runway 16C ten minutes after pushback and departed shortly thereafter, behind a Delta B767.
Airports generally look really cool from the sky:
Once in the sky, we were presented with a beautiful view of Washington and Mount Rainier.
Once we levelled off, the FA working First Class took drink orders. I ordered my usual tea with lemon and this time he brought me a plastic cup full of hot water and a tea bag along with lemons in the normal cup. I found that quite odd since wouldn’t he just make the tea for me like each flight attendant? Even if he wanted me to do it myself, why was the hot water in the plastic cup and not the normal one?
Then after everyone had drinks, he just showed the snack basket to everyone and didn’t say a word. Some of the items included apples, bananas, cookies, chips, chocolate, etc.
The WiFi for the entire flight cost $6.99 USD, which I thought was way too overpriced, I mean for a one and a half hour flight? Really? We began descending into San Francisco about thirty minutes before the scheduled arrival time. I LOVE flying into San Francisco, especially at night, the view is awesome.
We were on the ground ahead of scheduled arrival time and made it to the gate shortly thereafter. I had a three hour layover and of course I went to the Centurion Lounge to have dinner and to relax.
The agent at the Member Services desk actually recognised me… I found that odd since I’ve only been to this lounge twice and yet she welcomed me by name before I even handed her my card or ID. Another reason why American Express has the best customer service out of every other company.
For dinner, I had meat along with salad, rice, tomatoes, and some other yam-ish salad. All in all, it was tasty and I ate a nice meal.
After dinner, I had some coffee and decided to relax in one of the ‘lounging’ areas.
It was Friday night, but the lounge wasn’t that full. I’ve seen way more people in the lounge during the morning times rather than evening.
I spent about three hours total in the lounge and later headed to gate 88 where the flight to Fort Lauderdale was already delayed due to a late inbound crew.
United Airlines 1568
San Francisco (SFO) – Fort Lauderdale (FLL)
13 March 2015
Boarding began about twenty minutes behind schedule after the crew finally showed up. The flight was operated by a United B737 with the Sky Interior ‘design’, which I love. Although the seats don’t have IFE, I still find them more comfortable than the regular B737 First Class seats.
There was a blanket waiting for me at my seat. I usually hate redeye flights that don’t have flatbeds, but as such is life. I actually slept well for the majority of the flight.
My pre-departure beverage was water since I didn’t feel like drinking soda for a night flight.
Another beautiful nighttime departure from San Francisco.
I slept for most of the flight and woke up about thirty minutes before we began descending and was presented with a beautiful sunrise over Florida.
We were on the ground in Fort Lauderdale about twenty minutes behind schedule due to the fact boarding was delayed. I had about three hours to kill, so I went to the United Club which was conveniently located right next to my gate, C1.