Virgin America

logo_VA.gifInstead of flying Southwest on a recent quick trip to the Bay Area, I decided to give Virgin America a try, even though I'm a pretty loyal Southwest flier.  For the most part, it was a more pleasant experience.

Convenience:  Virgin flies to San Francisco (SFO) not Oakland (OAK).  Because I was going to San Francisco, this was a lot more convenient.

Planes:  New planes and comfortable seats with fancy media services in the seat back -- satellite TV and games with Internet access coming.

Gates:  Very comfortable. In SEA, it's terminal A. In SFO, you fly out of the international terminal. 

Reserved seating:  On Virgin America, I could book specific seats on line in advanced.  (On Southwest, they still have the (modified) "cattle call.")

Cool Factor:  On VirginAmerica, it was a fun experience.  It was  like going to a night club or bar.  If you are going to Las Vegas, I suppose you can get the party started early.  I, however, was preparing to give a talk later in the day and I needed to get a business game face on -- so this, sadly, distracted me.

seatback2.jpgOn the downside, the in flight entertainment system didn't work on my return trip  -- it was down for the entire flight.   I'm assuming they are still getting the bugs worked out.  I found it a bit disturbing that immediately on touch down (literally, when the wheels hit the tarmac), the system tried to re-boot and failed.    There's something about airplane computers failing (even though they are probably completely unrelated to the flight operations) that bother me. Maybe if they didn't display the root console on boot to the seat backs, I'd be  happy in my ignorance.


I hope they got that disk problem fixed.  At least they run Linux.

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This page contains a single entry by published on June 14, 2008 10:24 AM.

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