Review of Alaska Airlines flight Seattle Los Angeles in Economy

Airline Alaska Airlines
Flight AS 450
Class Economy
Seat 6A
Aircraft Boeing 737-900ER
Flight time 02:30
Take-off 23 Oct 16, 20:25
Arrival at 23 Oct 16, 22:55
AS   #101 out of 121 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 57 reviews
NGO85
By 742
Published on 28th October 2016
Background:

This series covers a quick jaunt up to Seattle for the weekend. As a reminder, the routing is:

Part 1 – LAX-SEA [AS 445, Boeing B737-800, First] – Here
Part 2 – SEA-LAX [AS 450, Boeing B737-900ER, Economy] – You are here

This report will cover the flight from SEA to LAX. The bonus for this report will be of Seattle and a trip up to Everett to see Paine Field and the new AF B789 awaiting final delivery.



Pre-flight:

At 10am, I received a push notification from AS that my flight had been delayed to 8:30pm. A little suspicious of a 5 minute delay so early in the day, I looked at the full details and saw that the arrival time into LAX had been pushed back all the way to 11:30pm so my gut told me the delay was going to be more than 5 minutes on departure. Either way, I left to return my car at SEA as the rain clouds started to roll into Seattle.

The rental car center is off-site so there is a shuttle bus that takes you back to the terminal.

photo 1

Inside, the FIDS.

photo 6

The empty AS check-in counters.

photo 2

Almost everything is self check-in these days where you tag your own bag and then drop it off at counter.

photo 3

I just stop in to grab a real paper boarding pass for my collection.

photo 4

There were no glitches getting TSA PreCheck on my BP this time and was granted it at OLCI so AS managed to resolve the problem between flights. No one in the TSA PreCheck line so I was instantly airside.

photo 5

Shame I wasn’t here on a sunny day, SEA has awesome windows overlooking the runways from this food court behind the FIDS.

photo 7

The carriers leaving from the S Gates caught my attention, so I veered off to see what was leaving tonight. Also, I guess SEA is the only US destination for MF so far? I’d be interested to see their B787 product if they come to LAX soon.

photo 8photo 9

So, it was pretty quiet at the S Gates. Only a BA B777 heading back to LHR.

photo 10photo 11

My flight was leaving from the N gates, so I took the underground train over there to go find my gate.

photo 12photo 13

Reaching my gate, my inbound aircraft just arrived and passengers were deboarding. There was an announcement from the gate agents that we would begin boarding as soon as the cabin was cleaned.

photo 14

The N gates weren’t too interesting since it is the satellite terminal, just some shops in the middle.

photo 15

The curse of the Pacific Northwest: nasty green carpet. PDX and SEA both need some remodeling.

photo 18



————————-

Alaska Airlines, AS 450
Equipment: Boeing B737-900ER [N474AS, delivered June 2015]
Departure: 20:25 (ATD: 21:08)
Arrival: 22:55 (ATA: 23:35)
Flight time: 2:27


My plane is only a year old, but will be in the old livery.

photo 17

The DYKWIAs are lined up awaiting boarding. No one else is crowding the gate as you can see.

photo 16

Boarding was pretty laid back despite the delay leaving and there was no maddash to the lines when the gate agents started the pre-boarding. I joined the back of the Elites queue and headed down the jetbridge.

photo 19

There was a logjam entering the cabin as the FAs were taking jackets from F passengers during boarding. The jetbridge controls.

photo 20

Welcome aboard.

photo 21

The FAs thanked us for our patience and ushered us in. I of course get bumped in the back as I take the picture of my row.

photo 22

I settle into my seat, 6A, which is the first row of Y. This was picked on the basis that AS uses soft bulkheads behind F so you are guaranteed the best legroom on the plane.

photo 23

The soft bulkhead.

photo 24

A better look at the seats and the legroom.

photo 31photo 32

The only downside of these seats is that it is the only row that does not have an outlet per seat. Charging my phone wasn’t an issue since the nice couple next to me had no objections.

photo 25

Even with the soft bulkhead, it’s still a bulkhead seat and has the airbag seat belts.

photo 26

Seatback contents are mounted on the fuselage.

photo 27

Everything is the same as before.

photo 28

The BOB menu.

photo 29photo 30

Our nextdoor neighbor is an AS B738 in the new livery.

photo 33

As boarding was wrapping up, the captain came on and apologized for the delay. He also said that due to flow control into LAX because of the runway repairs they are doing, we would not be allowed to leave SEA until 21:07 +/- 3 minutes in order to hit our landing slot at LAX. We pushed back and taxied out past a BR B77W.

photo 34

We sat in the corner of the airport until exactly 21:07, then we pulled up to a runway and immediately aligned for takeoff.

photo 35

Lifting up to the north over Seattle before making a U-turn to head south.



The drink carts came out. The FA immediately thanked me for my MVP Gold status and asked if I would like chocolates or a drink. I opted for the free premium drink given to MVP Golds and requested an Alaskan Icy Bay IPA and a glass of water. She returned after she finished the service and asked me if I wanted another one, but I declined since I still had to drive home.

photo 39

I slept until we started our descent and the cabin was prepared for arrival. LA glowing in the horizon as we turn in over Agoura Hills.

photo 40

We do the normal approach into LAX that takes a U-turn over downtown in order to land from the east.



We touch down just after 23:30, which is the arrival time they predicted back at 10am, so kudos to AS for that.

photo 44

A peek into the AA hangars with B77W inside.

photo 45

The standard action at TBIT.

photo 46

We pull into our gate at T6 next to an AA A321.

photo 47

We quickly deplane.

photo 48

It’s downstairs and out to the street as I go to pick up my car and drive home.



And with that, this short trip to Seattle is complete. See you all soon!





***BONUS***

Seattle



Fall foliage

photo 111photo 112

The salmon are heading upstream

photo 113

Some don’t make it…

photo 114

Chihuly Garden



Space Needle

photo 119

Seattle at night

photo 120

The rest of the pictures are from Paine Field to check out some of the planes awaiting delivery.

A pair of NH B789s (JA886A and JA888A).



HY B788 (UK78702), I like how their registration is so literla representing their 2nd B787.

photo 123

BA B789 (G-ZBKP).

photo 124

CA B77W that still has a temporary US registration (N5510E).

photo 125

The first KU B77W sporting the airlines brand new livery. I think this is the first and only plane to have this new livery so far and it hasn’t even entered service yet. I couldn’t see the registration from the way it was parked.

photo 126photo 127

Some old friends from Nagoya are also here^^

photo 129

The rest of the planes parked off in the distance, nothing too exciting. Just some MU B77Ws, EK B77Ws, PR B77W, BR B77W, KE B747 and B777 cargo planes.

photo 131

And maybe of most interest to the larger half of the site is the first AF B789 awaiting final delivery (F-HRBA). She certainly looks good in the AF livery.

photo af1photo af2
See more

Verdict

Alaska Airlines

6.1/10
Cabin9.0
Cabin crew9.5
Entertainment1.0
Meal/catering5.0

Seattle - SEA

8.5/10
Efficiency9.0
Access8.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness8.0

Los Angeles - LAX

7.5/10
Efficiency8.0
Access6.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness7.0

Conclusion

AS is a solid carrier on the west coast. They have cheery crews and the cabins are comfortable. Their big knock is the lack of any sort of IFE (no overhead monitors or moving maps). The flight delay was handled perfectly by the airline and the crew, we were kept well informed and the information we were given was very accurate.

Cabin comfort: The new B739s have pretty nice seats installed (even in F). My bulkhead seat had even better seat pitch than F so there was no complaint on comfort from me.

Crew: Another great crew. The FA working the Y cabin was very quick to acknowledge my status and even went out of her way to return later in the flight to make sure I didn't need anything else.

Meal and catering: The BOB menu is average, not very long like those on other carriers. Their catering is standard and is the same as what you'd receive on any full-service carrier in the US. The complimentary drinks to elites is always a nice gesture.

Entertainment: No newspapers offered. Standard seatback literature. No personal IFE and no overhead monitors.

Related

5 Comments

  • Comment 372270 by
    757Fan 432 Comments

    Nice report, Michael and great photos of Seattle. I often pass through SEA for work (and will actually be connecting through there for PDX next Tuesday) and so know the airport well. It's always great to see a nice mix of international airlines there when I'm connecting.

    Seattle is a great city as well too, and is one of my favorites. It looks like you had some nice weather while there!

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Comment 372646 by
      NGO85 AUTHOR 1624 Comments

      Thanks for stopping by and reading Matthew! It really was a lucky weekend to be in Seattle, not a drop of rain!

      SEA gets its fair share of travel to Asia and I've always seen a lot of BA award space on SEA-LHR, so that might not be doing so well.

  • Comment 372796 by
    Rl 777 812 Comments

    Thank you for sharing this FR with us!

    “The rental car center is off-site so there is a shuttle bus that takes you back to the terminal.”
    - Sounds similar to how it is at ARN.

    “all the way to 11:30pm”
    - Departing 5 minutes late but arriving 25 minutes late? Definitely suspicious.

    Seat pitch looks great for your seat.

    Stunning night shots!

    Communication from AS seems impressive, nice to have a great crew as well.

    Wow absolutely fantastic night shots before landing at LAX, I can never take decent night shots.

    Thank you for the fantastic bonus from Seattle and Paine Field!

    Great catch of the KU B77W, the AF 789 looks interesting with such large titles. Nice shots!

    Have a good one, see you.

    • Comment 373487 by
      NGO85 AUTHOR 1624 Comments

      “Departing 5 minutes late but arriving 25 minutes late? Definitely suspicious."
      - Any sort of small departure delay is more than likely going to be a larger arrival delay into LAX given the constant air traffic metering they use into the airport.

      "Seat pitch looks great for your seat."
      - Really is the best row in the plane, offering a lot more legroom than even the bulkhead in F.

      "nice to have a great crew as well."
      - AS is known for their good crews, which really helps make up for their lack of amenities (mainly IFE).

      "Wow absolutely fantastic night shots before landing at LAX, I can never take decent night shots."
      - I had to dig through a ton of photos to find those that looked at least reasonable. It's hard with the low lighting and get a lot of blurring.

      Glad you enjoyed the bonus of Boeing, they also had a lot of planes in the hangars, but don't allow photography inside. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

Login to post a comment.