Report No: 2021-405
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The third report of this series would cover Avelo Airlines' second ever revenue flight from Santa Rosa Sonoma Country to Burbank Hollywood Airport. Although, this flight wasn't eventful like the first flight, still, it was a nice and pleasant flight onboard Avelo Airlines.
Here is the routing for this series;
Loads for this flight
After arriving from the previous flight, as I didn't have a boarding pass for the return leg; I stopped by the check-in counter to get it. I was the first ever passenger to check at the Avelo Airlines check-in counter at Santa Rosa Sonoma County Airport and I was handed my boarding pass.
Avelo Airlines normally offers online check-in and printed/mobile boarding passes but on that day, they didn't have a mobile app and there were issues with the online check-in system.
Here is the boarding pass
Avelo Airlines organized an event at a nearby winery during the layover so the turnaround at STS for the inaugural flight was 4 hours. Although, that event was only available for press and media members thus regular passengers weren't invited. To be honest, there wasn't that much to do at the airport or the at the vicinity. Although there is a shopping mall that is 5-10 minutes away and accessible by Uber/Lyft, I decided to hang at the airport like most av-geeks on this flight did.
So there is a full service restaurant at the airport which has a variety of different food and a bar.
I have opted for a burger, a side of onion rings and a glass of wine poured by a local winery.
The restaurant was decent priced compared to a US restaurant and with the taxes and tips, I paid something about $45-50 for this meal. ( no refill for the wine )
Surprisingly, the quality of the burger meat was good and the fries weren't oily as you would eat in a fast-food restaurant. The onion rings were thin so they were difficult to eat it with a fork but tasted good.
After spending time at the restaurant and talking with some other av-geeks, I have headed to the departures hall.
However, there was a surprise, the TSA checkpoint would be opening 50 minutes before departure thus I needed to wander around for a little bit more.
At that time, I just toured the landside facilities of the airport and took a photo of this route map which isn't yet updated as now Burbank Airport is served from this airport as well.
There is no automated baggage system at this airport, however, there is a terminal expansion and modernization project that would be in service in Fall 2022. Until then, I guess the airport would still have this old-fashioned baggage claim area.
When the security checkpoint has opened, there was a 5-10 minute wait as both our flight and another AA flight to Dallas Fort Worth was departing at the same time. About a few minutes later than I took this photo, the departure hall was crowded and no seats were available. During the time I took the flight, COVID-19 measures such as social distancing was in place.
FIDS for the rest of the day. Our flight wasn't listed on the board.
The podium has balloons for the first ever Avelo flight from Santa Rosa.
And, the aircraft was getting prepared for departure.
There was another celebration and a small speech at the gate by the CEO & owner of the airline: Andrew Levy and shortly later the boarding process has started with the respect of boarding groups.
As this airport doesn't have jet bridges, passengers are required to walk at the tarmac to the aircraft.
American Eagle E-170 heading to DFW
And, N802XT, the bird that would take me to Burbank Bob Hope Airport
Also, the airport authority was distributing the same bags and cookies that they have distributed upon arrival of the previous flight to all passengers.
Here are some fuselage shots of the aircraft
After being greeted by the same crew which was on duty on the previous flight, I have headed to my seat 06A.
This time, I have opted for a regular row seat with 29 inches of legroom.
As the seats are super-slim, I didn't feel any uncomfortability with the legroom and it was fine. Though, I would say that seat 06B & 06C were not occupied on this flight.
Gifts that were provided on the ground
Avelo Airlines doesn't offer any inflight magazine, thus the only content located in the seat pocket is the safety card. The BoB menu would be joining the safety card, however, the airline is offering free water and snacks for the interim period.
N255NN was ready to push back while we were getting ready for departure.
And both aircrafts end up pushing back at the same time
However, the AA Eagle Embraer was going to take off before us.
Shortly later it was our turn,
We're in the air
Some scenery after takeoff
About a few minutes later, we were over the SF Bay Area
Here is Oakland Airport
And while we were still over the bay, the cabin crew distributed snack bags
The snack bags were the same ones like the previous flight
The snack bag consisted of a bottle of water, a pack of shortbread cookies and a Purell hand sanitizing wipe.
I totally find this acceptable for a flight shorter than an hour and I'll admit that this better of the COVID show of legacy carriers that was in effect when this flight was taken.
San Jose Airport, SJC
During this flight, I have visited the rear galley as the front lavatory was out of service due to a maintenance issue.
The lavatory seemed clean for this flight.
Also, I was able to find some more stuff from the previous owner of the aircraft
The rest of the flight was uneventful.
However, the scenery was perfect for the entire flight.
The cabin crew has started landing preparations about 5-10 minutes before arrival.
Van Nuys Airport
Descending into Burbank
And we have touched down at Burbank Airport
After a short taxi, we were going to park at gate B4, the same gate which was used for the outbound flight to Santa Rosa.
Our neighbor was going to be this Alaska 737
Shortly after we have parked, the seatbelt signs were switched off.
After saying goodbye to the wonderful cabin crew, I have left the aircraft from door 1L which was the only door used for deplaning.
Here is a photo of N802XT from another angle
At that time, the Alaska 737 was pushing back
And here is our other neighbor, another Avelo 737-800
While entering the terminal, the BUR ground staff thanked us for flying Avelo and told us that they would be really happy to see us again on a future flight.
At the airport, there wasn't anything special rather than Avelo offering free bottles of wine to media/press members only as a gift.
So, I have made my way to the exit and this report has come to an end.
The series would be continuing with the next and last report which would be published soon.
Once again, thanks for reading and hope to see you in another report.
To conclude this report, to fly Avelo Airlines on their inaugural flights was a pleasure and I'm glad that I was able to fly on these specific flights. With decent point-to-point routes out of Burbank, they might offer some competition on selected routes with other airlines. The seats were in decent quality, the fares were low and the inflight offerings were decent for a short flight and the only thing that they should improve needs to be entertainment which isn't a must for a 1-2h flight. Yes, I might consider flying Avelo in the near future, however, they have a pretty limited route network and they are an airline who has low base fares but that asks money for ancillaries, thus the math should be in favor of Avelo Airlines if I plan to fly them in the future.
I wish the best success to this brand new airline and I hope they'll be alive for many years.