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Old Nov 13, 12, 8:14 am   #151
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I have a multi-part trip report going covering my first three flights on United's 787. I just posted the inaugural flight portion yesterday on my blog.
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Old Nov 13, 12, 10:00 am   #152
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Originally Posted by kenn0223 View Post
On the second flight it was worse. The crew did not use the fancy lighting the lights were either full on or full off (no transitions), again no meal choice for GS the FA taking orders said they don't do that anymore and it's strictly front to back.
Um, depends on the crew. On my sCO IAH-SJU about a month ago the two GS were served first and were given a choice of meals in 737 FC. Front to back after that.

BTW, saw the Dreamliner push back that Saturday and wanted to see it take off at IAH, alas it just sat on the tarmac so finally gave up and went to the United Club while my A320 pulled into the same gate.

EmailKid, still not scheduled to fly 787 till next year.
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Old Nov 13, 12, 5:04 pm   #153
  
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I just published a full blog review of my first United Dreamliner flight (with lots of photos!)

United Boeing 787 Dreamliner: Butt-In-Seat Economy Plus Review!

Since I'm a Flyertalker and United 1K I figured you all would love reading it too. Let me know what you think!
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Old Nov 13, 12, 6:44 pm   #154
  
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Originally Posted by EmailKid View Post
Um, depends on the crew.
I totally agree...my biggest gripe with UA is the lack of consistency. I simply don't understand how hard it is for there to be a policy & procedure published by the company to the staff and then for the staff not to follow that procedure.

It's rampant throughout the customer facing side of the company from reservations agents to gate agents to flight attendants. The meal order taking is just one small example.

Bringing it back on topic.....UA has done a lot to promote the 787 and I expect has put a lot of effort to make sure the execution of the flights (on the ground and in the air) goes a certain way and leaves customers with a positive impression. Like many other parts of UA's operation; all that planning is wasted and the customer impression is dulled when the staff do not execute as instructed.

As I mentioned in my original post, I was impressed with the 787 and will chose it over other planes but my impression was soured by the actions of the crew. I cannot help but recall those aspects my my trip when thinking about the experience as a whole. I mean...how hard is it to use the lighting system? I would think using one of the presets is as easy as pushing "full on" or "full off" like my crew did.
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Old Nov 13, 12, 8:12 pm   #155
  
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Originally Posted by UA-NYC View Post
A question for anyone who can make the comparison - is there ANY difference in the BF experience on the 787 vs. the 777, other than more narrow aisles? I'm not referring to any 787 new tech benefits (mood lighting, big bins, etc), but just in how UA decided to "outfit" this thing.

Also, anecdotally the 757 BF seats seem a bit shorter than the 777s...where does the 787 seat fall in this spectrum length-wise?
No difference. Some seats have more leg room than others (like the front middle bulkhead), but those types of differences exist on other BF-equipped planes. I've flown on CO's 777/767 and now 787 metal in BusinessFirst and can notice no difference.
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Old Nov 13, 12, 9:07 pm   #156
  
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No one mentioned the missing wow factor on United's 787's. I've flown ANA's 787's twice, and walking into Boeing's intended galley-free dramatic entry is a jaw dropper! Leave it to our infamous United Airlines to botch the wow factor. There's a galley where none is intended and they've mostly blocked the beautiful ceiling design. You don't know what you're missing until you fly on a 787 that's configured more like Boeing intended. And that goes for the ultra-packed economy cabin. It looks and feels like a cramped bus. I didn't get that feeling at all on ANA's 787's.

The 787 is a wonderful airplane, but United has proven once again why it's great to have a choice of airlines. I was excited about my UA 787 LAX-NRT economy plus itinerary in April 2013. Forget it! On a long flight across the Pacific, seat comfort in number one, and these UA 787 economy seats are hideous. I'm switching to a Singapore Airlines A380. The service will be better and the seat will be more comfortable.

I was excited about United's new airplane, but my enthusiasm is gone. Boeing made a great plane, United screwed it up. Sorry for the downbeat assessment.
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Old Nov 13, 12, 10:02 pm   #157
  
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A few observations from my IAH-LAX on 11/05 in BF which I managed to board despite UA's best efforts to thwart me by delaying my inbound to IAH by 2:20 when I had a 2:25 connection onto the 787... I was really gutted sitting at PNS knowing my plans to fly the 787 were almost certainly doomed, but the PNS-IAH flight ultimately came forward a bit and was delayed only 2:00, a faster than normal flight into IAH helped, and the 787 being delayed inbound from ORD by nearly 1:00 meant I made it... I'm glad I did it but I won't be going too far out of my way to fly a UA 787 again as I didn't think it was that special...

Yes the windows are much taller, yes the cabin is very quiet, yes the bins are very big [but the latches are a bit different], yes the mood lighting is cool [but I wouldn't chose a 787 flight on that basis], I'm very pleased they have the individual overhead air vents... I didn't get to try ghetto class so I can't comment on that, and as the flight was only 3.5 hours the effect of the lower altitude cabin was hardly significant and not noticeable to me...

So I'll add a few of the negatives from my point of view, some of which haven't been mentioned yet:

* Seat OK overall, but in 3K foot space was poor/narrow and the seat width at shoulder position laying flat was poor too (I couldn't lay on my back, I have to lay on my side to fit between the arm rests)

* I don't like the electric dimmer windows... They are very slow to change, they don't go completely dark, and I'm concerned FAs might dim them all at times when folks are watching movies although I'd prefer to look out the window

* Not intuitive how to open the lav door, especially from inside

* If you do the "as a courtesy to others please wipe around the wash basin after using" thing in the lav, the motion sensitive taps causes more water to flow into the wash basin ruining the effect

* The electrical outlet (power, not USB) sent my iPad crazy - it made the touch screen pretty much unusable as where I touched the screen didn't correspond with what the iPad did... I though the iPad had developed a major fault, but as soon as unplugged it the iPad worked perfectly again

* NO "From the Flightdeck" (aka channel 9) option on the IFE menus

Andy

Last edited by Skymonster; Nov 13, 12 at 10:51 pm
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Old Nov 14, 12, 1:38 am   #158
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Flight report: 11/13/12 UA1459 IAH-LAX on N20904/3904

Took UA1459 on the IAH-LAX segment tonight (11/13/12).

Seats 16JK: Sat with the Mrs. in seats 16JK (E+) - had selected these bulkhead seats prior to any info here on FT or SeatGuru. Decent enough leg room and the seats in recline also shift the seat pad forward for a little more comfort - however, you can really feel the seat pad forward lean/tilt when your seat is the full upright position. Also, since these are the CO seats, you'd have to readjust sitting now and then to get the blood flow back into your legs.

Here's the leg room for 16JKL (all of us pulled our legs back for the shot):



And because our screens are attached to aluminum arms that stow for takeoff and landing, here's the screen we get to watch SMI/J on:



Large Tinted Windows: While the tinted windows were larger than older ones and "cool", I received a face full of sun from windows up in BF on the port side - even with their windows at full tint. Didn't appreciate it since I ended having to duck and realign my face for a few minutes trying to get out of the way.

Quieter: In "idle mode" the 787's engines were considerably quieter than any mainline aircraft that I can remember - but still put out a fair amount of noise when taking off and in flight. After the seat belt sign was turned off after takeoff, I immediately went for my earplugs in the overhead bin.

Larger Overhead Bins: And yes, the overhead bins are larger - but still require some management to put the rollaboards - primarily on their sides, in order to stow up to 3 in a bin. Interesting latches plus not sure about the rationale for the mirrors on the backs of the insides of the overhead bins.

Here's the latch on the bin:



No Mood Lighting, Poor Lead FA: Didn't see much effort on the mood lighting. Also had one lead FA who really, really didn't get a clue that she was talking way way way too softly - which made it worse during announcements since we couldn't hear nor ignore her via the IFE.

Not mood lighting but here's another person over in BF taking photos as well:



No Clue sCO Crew: The sCO crew completely ignored my blazer that sat upon my arm and lap for many many minutes prior to door closing as well as during takeoff prep. I know that on all of my pmUA flights, the FAs would always catch note of my blazer and offer to hang it up - especially when I was in E+ and, more often than not, in the front of the E+ section.

Haz Cheezburger: Did appreciate the opportunity to purchase a reheated burger vs. the standard fresh fare. Found it tasty.

Standard Issue sCO Cabin: Didn't do much exploring around to really test out the running commentary on this thread about how packed Y really is and to notice how tight the aisles were. Don't feel that there was much benefit as of now (a few hours later) with the higher pressure in the cabin. And, yes, this is a brand new almost devoid of intersting color hue cabin layout.

No Faraday Cage: Our cell phones worked fine as well as my Blackberry so YMMV.

Empty Seats Already? One other note was the number of empty middle E+ seats and middle Y seats - 16 of the E+ seats (including 27DE) and 19 in Y were empty. Right now, ua.com's flight status shows 25 persons cleared standby and 6 upgrades and the mobile site was showing 40+ on the upgrade standby list.

(Opportunity Note: A quick check of the LAX-IAH return tonight shows an almost empty E+ section and about 1/3 empty in Y - and that's after 35 standbys were accommodated and 23 upgrades - so returns to IAH may be your best bet for a BF upgrade on a 787 in the near term.)

Summary:
The Mrs. enjoyed it. I wasn't terribly blown away. Doubtful I'll make a strong effort one way or another to get onto a 787 - unless it is to avoid a 737 or a RJ.

David

Last edited by DELee; Nov 17, 12 at 10:54 pm Reason: added embedded photos
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Old Nov 14, 12, 10:37 am   #159
  
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I will be flying the 787 in December. Currently I have 1A. Would 4A/L be a better choice? I am sticking to the bulkhead for the bigger footwell.
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Old Nov 14, 12, 11:36 am   #160
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Originally Posted by anc-ord772 View Post
I will be flying the 787 in December. Currently I have 1A. Would 4A/L be a better choice? I am sticking to the bulkhead for the bigger footwell.
IMO the bigger footwell seats w/the PMCO configuration are a must
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Old Nov 14, 12, 12:18 pm   #161
  
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Originally Posted by UA-NYC View Post
IMO the bigger footwell seats w/the PMCO configuration are a must
Indeed. Both row 1 and 4 are bulkhead. I guess I'm wondering which BF cabin bulkhead folks would recommend.
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Old Nov 14, 12, 1:34 pm   #162
  
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Originally Posted by anc-ord772 View Post
Indeed. Both row 1 and 4 are bulkhead. I guess I'm wondering which BF cabin bulkhead folks would recommend.
I was in 4L and am 5' 11". Plenty of leg room in this seat which is also a window seat located just ahead of the wing. I was able to prop my legs up in the footwell. Very comfortable......
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Old Nov 14, 12, 2:23 pm   #163
  
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Want to see an example of a Dreamliner done right? Here's a video about my ANA Dreamliner experience. I was in economy class, so I don't know about the upper classes. The feeling you get entering ANA's Dreamliner is very different from the time you walk through the door. It's inviting not challenging. Once the glow of the new airplane has passed, United 787 economy class passengers will just have to "make do" and get through the flight.
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Old Nov 14, 12, 4:09 pm   #164
  
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Mirrors in bins

Quote:
not sure about the rationale for the mirrors on the backs of the insides of the overhead bins.
Makes it easier to see if anything has gone astray in a bin, I expect. I've seen this on other airlines/airliners in the past.
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Old Nov 14, 12, 5:56 pm   #165
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colortv View Post
Want to see an example of a Dreamliner done right? Here's a video about my ANA Dreamliner experience. I was in economy class, so I don't know about the upper classes. The feeling you get entering ANA's Dreamliner is very different from the time you walk through the door. It's inviting not challenging. Once the glow of the new airplane has passed, United 787 economy class passengers will just have to "make do" and get through the flight.
Unfortunately what you saw on NH's 787 will not be the same from now on, all domestic birds will be converted from 252 seats to 323 seats. The bar counter at door 2 where you enter the plane will be removed, Y will be adding one more seats per row changing from 2-4-2 to 3-3-3.

International however is a different story though.
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