My short stay in Santiago concluded with a trip back to the USA, by way of American Airlines 787 aircraft. I’ve only flown on this new generation plane a couple of time before and I was keen to experience it.
This was open and there were no queues when I arrived around 5pm. Whilst the agent could not get me a boarding pass for my onward flight to Madrid, she confirmed my seat – 6A – in the mini-cabin behind the galley for the 9pm flight to Dallas.
WHY THAT SEAT?
Well there is a lot of information on the internet about how much movement is in these seats. Complaints that they rock when the passenger next door moves, apparently led to AA cancelling the order for more of them. The view is that 6A, whilst having its back to the loo (it’s rear facing) is the best for stability. I won’t sleep if the seat is rocking unpredictably, and so I picked this one. The disadvantages – it’s near the galley but there was little noise from there, and you get served last. It is however near Door 2, so you get off fast. There was no noise from the loo that I noticed so I would recommend this seat if you fear rocking!
This is the rest of the mini-cabin – Rows 6 & 7:
After clearing passport control and security I went to the Lounge (more tomorrow) and arrived at the gate at boarding time. Business Class and Priority were called forward. Half way down the jet bridge however, there was a second security check which required the whole of your carryon to be opened and hand checked. This delayed boarding a bit, but with a light load on the flight we were ready to leave on time.
Menus, amenity kits and slippers were all at the seat on boarding as were the Bose headsets and a bottle of water.
IN FLIGHT SERVICE
The flight attendants produced a drink fairly quickly – and then confirmed dinner orders.
The food was tasty but I was sleepy by the time I had finished the main course and so set my bed up for a few hours of rest.
I am afraid if a cabin is too light I cannot sleep, even with eye shades. It’s annoying but it’s a problem. Although we were landing in the early hours I wanted to make sure the shades were drawn. You do this electronically by clicking a button at the bottom of the window. However, it can be changed by the crew.
I had a good 7 hours rest and have to agree that the Dreamliner’s lower pressurisation made a difference. I felt refreshed. The plane is quieter than a 777 and it seemed cooler too which always helps me sleep.
We arrived too early for Customs which only opens at DFW at 5am and so were held on the plane until exactly that time. A 10 minute walk and I was in the empty immigration hall and 10 minutes later I was out ready for a nap at the Hyatt which is above Terminal D at Dallas.
A pretty good flight, decent food and a friendly crew. What more can you ask? Yes, the 787 is a winner.