Hello! This is my first time posting a flight report. I am an avid flyer and with a job that is based in Europe and a home in Charlotte, I get plenty of chances to fly the friendly skies! I am a Miles and More Credit Card holder and trying to gain status so I try to fly Star Alliance when possible. However, CLT being an AA hub means sometimes you have to do what you have to do. As I have to travel back to Luxembourg for work, I decided this was a great chance to start posting. I am only posting reviews for the first two legs as my next two (intra-Europe) are during work hours and I have to pay the bills.
As a frequent traveler I have grown accustomed to booking multiple tickets. Its risky and you will get burned but what the heck; it saves a few dollars. So this time, I am on 3 separate tickets over 4 flights. So wish me luck and here goes nothing. Its time to go to LUX via MUC,AMS and EWR. Enjoy!
1. Check In
2. Flight Details 6. Food/Drink
3. Security 7. Landing
I had booked a Basic Economy fare so I could only view the seat map 48 hours prior to departure. Only then can I choose a seat , for a fee of course. At 11:55 on Sunday (Tuesday departure), I decided to see what my seat choices were. I have a long 4 hour layover before the UA flight to AMS, so I wasn't looking to actually pay for a seat.
At exactly 11:55 the day before I checked in via the app. Much to my suprise, I still did not have an option to pick a seat! So, I just decided to roll the dice and let AA choose for me. I ended up in 28E. That's a middle seat in the far back. I was expecting this. Since I'm boarding Group 9, I knew that overhead space would be non-existent so I made sure to pack tight and be prepared to stow it under 27E. I was given the opportunity throughout the day to select at what price I would be willing to get bumped. Given only a 4 hour layover and lack of being on a single ticket, I respectfully declined.
Airline: American Airlines (AA)
Delivered: 19 years old
Departure Gate: B4
Departure Runway: 18L
Scheduled Departure Time: 11:55
Actual Departure Time: 12:31
Scheduled Arrival Time: 1:51
Actual Arrival Time: 1:57
Landing Runway: 22L
Arrival Gate: A37
Scheduled Flight Time: 1:56 min
Actual Flight Time: 1:26 minutes
I arrived really early to the airport, about 9:55 or 90 mins before boarding was to begin. CLT is still experiencing a lot of construction. Its best to pay attention to flow pattern changes when arriving or departing.
You can see the construction
I entered through Door B which puts you right next to a Starbucks and the B Security line which houses TSA precheck. AA check in desk occupies most of the floor space but since I had a mobile boarding pass, I preceded to TSA. The line was almost non-existent and I was through security in under 3 minutes! In my Experience the non-precheck security lines can get quite long at CLT.
After clearing security, you walk through a wonderfully large atrium which houses plenty of food options, and yes a Chick fil A! My gate was B4 so I made the slight dogleg right towards the B Pier. CLT has 5 piers. Pier A is all non-American Air flights. Pier D is mostly widebodies for Europe and other hubs. Pier E is small regional Jets. Piers B and C are the usual Boeing and Airbus narrow body lineup. B4 is just a short 2-3 minute walk from security. When I arrived the flight was not yet posted but it was still a full 100 minutes before departure.
The waiting area was packed as a flight to Dallas was delayed for over two hours. I managed to find a seat to work on this review. The seats were nice and offered wireless charging and your typical power plug with USB.
Boarding began 1 minute early at 11:19. I was group 9 which began boarding along side group 8, 16 minutes after we began. At this point, gate agents also started checking all large carry on items as overhead space was no more. I was allowed to carry mine on board and stow it under my seat. I had prepared for this and packed as light as possible. I was cramped for the flight but its better than trusting AA with your luggage.
We began our taxi at around 12:05 or 10 minutes past departure time. The pilot informed us that our take off slot was 12:31 and that this was typical. We managed to hit this target right on and began our climb towards EWR!
The Seats are ok on AA. The headrest had adjustable wings so that you can cradle your head for better sleep. The air conditioning on this plane worked extremely well. Maybe… too well.
This aircraft was equipped with overhead IFE. During the flight a new show called New Amsterdam was playing. Headphone jacks were located on your armrest and were of the single prong variety, so that you could use your personal headphones. No AA headphones were offered and I didn't ask as I was going to use the flight to think about my work schedule for the next week (such fun thoughts). Wireless entertainment was available via wifi. I did not try this out. A power plug was available underneath the seat.
Beverage service began about 15 minutes or so after wheels up. At first it appeared this may be a long process as the 2 FA took well over 15 minutes to service the first few rows of AA Main Cabin Extra. However, 2 additional FA started working directly from the back gallery and took good care of the ones in the back. I went with my tried and true of Biscoff and coffee. Its the perfect combo.
We landed at 1:57, just 6 minutes behind schedule and "on time". The taxi to our gate was short as we landed headed towards Terminal A. I was not able to get pictures of the overcrowded terminal as I had to rush to meet a friend for a quick trip to Tops Dinner before heading back for my UA70 to AMS.
The crew was typical of AA. It was neither good nor bad but adequate.
I hope you enjoyed this review and I look forward to seeing you on my next one UA 70 EWR-AMS.
It was a typical flight on AA. CLT is overcrowded and still under construction. EWR is EWR (if you travel to EWR, you know what I mean).