Review of US Airways flight Phoenix San Francisco in Economy

Airline US Airways
Flight US686
Class Economy
Seat 14D
Aircraft Airbus A321
Flight time 02:01
Take-off 29 Aug 15, 17:05
Arrival at 29 Aug 15, 19:06
US 52 reviews
jetsetpanda
By 1547
Published on 30th August 2015
Hello and welcome to the return portion of this short one day trip.

Here is my schedule so far:

US 574 SFO-PHX in Y - http://flight-report.com/en/report-11386.html.
US 686 PHX-SFO in Y - you are here.


During my layover in PHX I indulged in some plane spotting and explored most of T4. Feeling a big hungry I looked for a sit down restaurant and here is my first discovery - Cowboy Ciao.

According to its website, this restaurant specializes in modern American cuisine with a Southwest accent and global influences. It has a branch at T4 and one of its signature dishes is the Stetson Chopped Salad, which consists of rows of chopped arugula, couscous, dried sweet corn, a house trail mix, balsamic marinated Roma tomatoes, avocado and grilled chicken (last two items are extra). When I arrived I was greeted and seated right away, and a friendly server took my order. I ordered their signature salad and upon being presented, one of the staff members offered to mix it for me. I thanked him but opted to do that myself. Isn't it always more satisfying when you make your own mess?

The salad was delicious with a combination of textures and flavors that complemented well with each other.

Cowboy Ciao.




Afterwards I did some shopping and was specifically looking for some magnets to give as gifts. I visited several stands that offered the usual kitschy assortments and skipped them altogether. One of the worst things that I ever saw was a mug shaped like a rattlesnake. Finally I stumbled upon a store named Indigenous that featured some tasteful items with a Native American touch and bought my gifts there.

At the Hudson Booksellers I discovered the publication New Philosopher which has some of the most compelling, though provoking and engaging articles that I have ever read from a magazine of this genre. Interestingly the magazine does not feature any ads or glossy pictures with anorexic models, which sets a refreshing tone. Some might find the magazine too cerebral, but in a country bombarded with prevalent shallowness and crass propaganda from its media, this publication offers a ray of hope for those that do not want to join the cognitive conformity of the masses.

photo DSC07029 (1280x853)

Tucked with a pair of magazines in my bag, I head to the gate taking comfort that my flight will now be shorter and much more bearable. At the gate I could sense the excitement of some people heading to SFO, a nice city that I call home. However, SFO these days is not what it used to be.

Last week there was a report of an assault at a Rainforest Cafe by Fisherman's Wharf and not too long ago a young woman was killed from a stray bullet while walking with her father near the area. There is also the problem of homeless people everywhere in downtown and let's not mention the skyrocketing rents. I read a report about the exodus of qualified teachers because their salaries can't keep up with the high costs of living here. I'm afraid that the only people that can eventually live in this city are the top 1%, the techies and the rich overseas investors who purchase houses in cash like buying candy in a store. I guess change is the only constant in life. So enjoy San Francisco if you are visiting, but if you are planning to live here I wish you good luck.

Did I mention that it was 102 F (38.89 C)in PHX? I guess that is why the airplanes parked at the gate have this cockpit shield cover and the windows are shut. It's not uncommon for FA's to ask passengers to shut the windows on arrival in order to help cool the plane.

Here is my airplane at the gate.

photo DSC07022 (1280x831)


The gate where my flight departed was at the end of the concourse and there were 4 other gates in that little area, so it felt crowded.

Gate.

photo DSC07023 (1280x853)

Boarding was orderly and once again, I boarded with group 5. The plane on this segment was a little bigger and there were a few middle seats open in my area. The FA assigned to us was smiling and friendly. There were 2 UA pilots that sat in the row in front of me and my neighbor by the window seemed like a nice lad. When I checked the seat pocket it was filthy with used napkins. I did not dare put anything inside and instead used the pocket of the seat next to me which was empty.

Cabin.

photo DSC07024 (1280x853)photo DSC07025 (1280x853)photo DSC07026 (1280x850)


Once again a beverage service was offered after take off. I got some nuts with fruit mix for USD 5 which hit the spot.

photo DSC07038 (1280x853)photo DSC07042 (1280x853)


Soon we were descending and we arrived earlier than expected at 18:47 instead of 19:06.

I took this pic of the plane at the gate.

photo DSC07048 (1280x853)
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Verdict

US Airways

7.5/10
Cabin9.5
Cabin crew9.0
Entertainment/wifi5.0
Meal/catering6.5

Phoenix - PHX

8.8/10
Efficiency9.0
Access9.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness9.0

San Francisco - SFO

8.2/10
Efficiency9.0
Access8.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness8.0

Conclusion

Another good experience on a short flight, just like on the outbound.

Related

9 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 145130 by
    lagentsecret 12360 Comments

    Thanks for sharing this FR

    And congratulations to the new Ruby member

    The signature salad looks good but I wouldn't have mixed all the ingredients together : I would have made different combinations with when eating.
    The sauce isn't appealing : a mustard or a wasabi sauce would have been much better to my taste

    Some might find the magazine too cerebral
    I can't comment this sentence without being too rude ;)
    Just one word : with the great US media(and politicians like D.T.) you don't really need to think lol
    BTW to be honest it's not much better in France

    Did I mention that it was 102 F (38.89 C)in PHX?
    Thanks for thinking of your non US audience but 38.89 is not that hot

    Being on board you can't refrain yourself to buy some junk food ? lol

    All in all a good flight in a comfortable cabin and with a nice crew

    See you soon for a next report

    • Comment 323910 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2294 Comments

      Bonjour mon agent secret.

      And congratulations to the new Ruby member
      - Thank you, but you can really congratulate me again at the end of Oct. when I become an Emerald member through AA. ;) I did this trip for the BA card and tag. Oui, je suis vraiment fou.

      I wouldn't have mixed all the ingredients together : I would have made different combinations with when eating.
      The sauce isn't appealing : a mustard or a wasabi sauce would have been much better to my taste
      - Well, the gourmand in you has spoken. The dressing seemed rather ordinary in comparison to the detailed salad. I agree that someting with a kick would have been nicer, especially considering that you are in the Southwest.

      I can't comment this sentence without being too rude ;)
      - Your impeccable manners are admirable.

      BTW to be honest it's not much better in France
      - Tu crois? Isn't critical thinking one of the most valuable characteristics of French society?

      Thanks for thinking of your non US audience but 38.89 is not that hot
      - My audience is a global one : I guess everything is relative and if you are used to the heat, then this temperature might be just average.

      Being on board you can't refrain yourself to buy some junk food ? lol
      - I did it to give a more objective and encompassing aspect to my FR's. Besides, it's unfair of you to call these junk food. They are healthier snacks.

      Thank you for stopping by. My next report should be more captivating. Stay tuned for Rio.

    • Comment 323978 by
      lagentsecret 12360 Comments

      Oh an AA challenge to become Emerald : that sounds very interesting :)
      I can't wait to read your travels to reach the status

    • Comment 323979 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2294 Comments

      Oh an AA challenge to become Emerald : that sounds very interesting :)
      - It was by invitation only and totally unexpected. You know I have already gave up on AA but this offer was too good to pass - 30,000 miles for EXP before Oct. 9 is not bad at all. Once I attain that then I will be in a bargaining position. ;) Finally AA shows me some love.

      I can't wait to read your travels to reach the status
      - Just 3 trips. 2 SFO-GIG and 1 SFO-PHX. Why GIG? That was the cheapest long distance trip that I could find. Europe or Asia were over USD 1,000+ RT at the time. The first trip to GIG in Sept. was USD 850 and the second one in Oct. went down to USD 630. The PHX quickie was USD 93. EXP status for less than USD 1.500 (EUR 1.338) is not bad at all.

    • Comment 324117 by
      NGO85 SILVER 1780 Comments

      Do you also have skeletons in your closet?
      - No, just a bunch of tacky Southwestern themed sweaters.

      so I quickly gave him a good kick
      - Sometimes that's what people need.

  • Comment 145149 by
    K2World 2005 Comments

    Thank you for sharing this quick return trip to Phoenix.
    It would havd been to bad to miss the bronze level for only 5 TP.

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