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As many of you know, for my girlfriend Emily’s birthday I decided to surprise her with a trip to New York City. I’ve been to New York a couple of times, but Emily had never been so I thought it would be a great place to take her. While this trip did not have any first class flying or 5 star luxury hotels, I decided to do a trip report since this could be a normal trip that some FFU readers might take in the future.
- Flight On Delta Shuttle – ORD-LGA
- Le Parker Meridian
- The Manhattan at Times Square Hotel
- Birthday Celebration
- Delta Shuttle – LGA-ORD & Ground Link Review
To get to New York from Chicago, I normally would have burned 15,000 British Airways Avios miles per a person. However compliments of Capital One Venture Card’s 100,000 Mile Match last year, we had previously booked a trip to NYC last summer. That trip was interrupted by Hurricane Irene, so Delta was kind enough to credited the flight amount back to our account. In the spirit of saving our miles, I opted just to use that credit for our flight.
Since my amount of vacation at work is severely lacking this year, to maximize the small of amount of days I have, we decided to fly out on Wednesday, January 18, at 7PM, which would allow us a full 3 1/2 days in NYC.
While Chicago’s public transit system is terrible and extremely inefficient compared to most major cities, it is really cheap! For only $2.25, you can take the train right from Downtown (Sears Tower area) directly to O’Hare. While it does take about an hour, unlike most cities, thankfully Chicago has yet to sell off the Airport train stop to a private company. Therefore there are no additional fees or taxes, and the train drops you off right inside of O’Hare! Much cheaper than the $35-$40 a Taxi would cost you.
Emily met me right after work Wednesday and we hopped on the train and were at O’Hare within 45 minutes. Check-in was a breeze.
While generally I like O’Hare, the two things that I cannot stand about it are the lack of food selections and the lack of Arrival / Departure televisions in the “Delta Terminal”. While I understand that the food is going to be over-priced, I just wish they would at least have good over-priced food. The choices for Dinner were either Auntie Annie’s, Chilli’s, and McDonald’s. YUM!
As for the Arrival / Departure televisions, in the entire “Delta Terminal”, I believe there are 2 screens and one of them only shows United flights. In March of 2011, my friend and I missed a $280 round trip flight on Delta to Madrid because we couldn’t find what Gate it was leaving from. No joke! It was an expensive mistake that ended up costing us an additional $500 one way to get to Madrid, so now I use FlightView on my iPhone.
Luckily, this time the Gate information was printed on our tickets, so we went to the Gate. Luckily for us, I always love to look around and take in the surroundings no matter how mundane and I noticed that our Gate had changed on the screen! However, no one from Delta made any mention on it over the PA. We could have missed our flight again!
After moseying on over to our new gate, it was finally time to board our Delta Shuttle Regional Jet. While I have flown Regional Jets to NYC before, I’ve never flown Delta’s Shuttle before. To be honest, I was kind of impressed.
The one thing that really stood out to me about Delta Shuttle is that they offer FREE beer, wine, peanuts, and pretzels. While those of you reading at home are probably laughing saying so what, it is certainly more than they are required to do, so I appreciate it.
Although 99% of travel junkies complain about Delta’s loyalty program, I personally like Delta’s hard product. Every time I have ever flown Delta, I have found the staff courteous and the experience quite pleasurable. Unfortunately, I live in Chicago which is a United and American hub, so there isn’t much chance of me switching over to Delta but I can certainly see why so many people like Delta.
After enjoying our free drinks on the flight, we landed safely without any incident at LaGuardia.
Since we were arriving at almost 11PM Eastern Time, I wasn’t especially in the mood to take public transportation and have the pleasure of taking a bus then transferring to a train to get to Manhattan.
Although, Jetsetter canceled all my GroundLink vouchers from the prior week for already having an account with Gilt, I used the $30 sign up bonus code MommyPoints had provided. So prior to arriving in NYC, I had requested a pick up. The driver was there before we landed and was waiting outside when we left the terminal. He drove us straight to our hotel, Le Parker Meridian, without any problem. After the $30 sign-up bonus, our final total was only $26!
All in all for being a Regional Jet service, Delta Shuttle is not to shabby. I’d recommend it over United or American Regional Jet service any day.
Question Of The Day:
Have you ever flown Delta Shuttle? What did you think?