Pope Francis to Fly AA charter WAS (ADW)-JFK, JFK-PHL, PHL-CIA

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Old Sep 29, 15, 1:14 am   -   Wikipost
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Pope Francis Flying AA9420 Chartered 772 WAS-JFK-PHL-CIA

The Pope flies in a normal commercial airliner chartered for his flights. Normally the outbound airline is Alitalia, the return an airline selected as much as possible to be the national or "flag" carrier of the country returning from.

On this trip, an Alitalia Airbus A330-202 (EI-EJG, c/n 1123, "Raffaello Sanzio" (painter of late Renaissance Popes) was used FCO-HAV-HOG-SCU-ADW, an American Airlines Boeing 777-223ER will supply the onward/return aircraft (probably selected because it has the first class Flagship Suite for the overnight flight) for ADW-JFK-PHL-FCO, with a USMC helicopter providing JFK-JRB-JFK service.

The AA aircraft used, at least WAS/ADW-JFK-PHL, is Boeing 777-223ER N776AN (c/n 29582) a pre-CIP 77A. The flight number AA9420 is being used throughout. See tracking here.

Francis is to be accompanied by approximately thirty staff in his seguito, typically consisting of "the Cardinal Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin; one or two other cardinals and bishops; ~10 priests, most of them officials of the Secretariat of State; and ~20 laity, most employees of the Vatican Press Office as well as plainclothes agents of the Vatican security service and the Swiss Guard."

The passengers and crew will number about 110 during this trip. The Pope and his seguito take up F and C. The accompanying ~70 journalists pay the cost of the charter by paying for their fares, and sit in Economy class. The seventy reporters must fly the entire trip, FCO-HAV-HOG-SCU-ADW-JFK-PHL-FCO are said to be paying $5,500 each, $385,000 total. (From cruxnow.com); only the Pope and select company will do the portion of the JFK-JRB-JFK portion of the trip which is being conducted by USMC helicopters.

Though he rode a Fiat into the city of Washington, according to Business Journal International Limousine Service will be providing transportation for His Holiness and his entourage in all U.S. three cities.

Though "goody bags" are no longer handed out, it is said the members of the VAMP, Vatican press corps, do get to keep the Papal seat headers covers used for the charter flights.


Papal emblem seat head rest cover

Pope Francis' flight schedule

Saturday, September 19, 2015
10:35 a.m. Pope Francis departs FCO AZ A330-202 EI-EJB to HAV
3:51 pm.m. Papal aircraft lands at HAV / José Martí international airport
Monday, September 21, 2015
8 a.m. Departure by air for Holguin, Cuba.
9.20 a.m. Arrival at HOG / Holguin Frank País International Airport
4.40p.m. Departure by air for Santiago de Cuba.
5.30 p.m. Arrival at SCU / Santiago de Cuba’s Antonio Maceo International Airport
Tuesday, September 22, 2015
12:30 p.m. Leaves SCU / Santiago de Cuba aboard Alitalia charter A330-202
4 p.m. Pope Francis arrives in D.C. at Joint Base Andrews at 4 p.m.
Thursday, September 24, 2015 AA9420
4 p.m Departure for New York from Joint Base Andrews (D.C.)
5 p.m. Arrival at JFK / John F. Kennedy International Airport (New York)
Saturday, September 26, 2015 AA9420
8:40 a.m Departure for PHL / Philadelphia from JFK / John F. Kennedy International Airport
9:30 a.m Arrival in Atlantic Aviation hangar at PHL / Philadelphia International Airport Philadelphia
8 p.m Departure for return to Rome CIA
Sunday, September 27, 2015 AA9420
09:57 a.m. Arrival CIA / Ciampino international airport
All times local time; subject to change

www.popefrancisvisit.com
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Old Sep 22, 15, 2:50 pm
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Pope Francis to Fly AA charter WAS (ADW)-JFK, JFK-PHL, PHL-CIA

Interesting tidbit, an AA 772 will take Pope Francis on his US tour and back to Europe. Wonder how far in advance his upgrade clears?


Of note though, apparently the Pope typically flies Alitalia out and the "national carrier" of the country he's visiting back. Wonder how AA was selected?

http://www.cruxnow.com/church/2015/0...e-papal-plane/
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Old Sep 22, 15, 3:21 pm
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Originally Posted by malexander131 View Post
Interesting tidbit, an AA 772 will take Pope Francis on his US tour and back to Europe. Wonder how far in advance his upgrade clears?


Of note though, apparently the Pope typically flies Alitalia out and the "national carrier" of the country he's visiting back. Wonder how AA was selected?
It's the largest U.S. carrier would be my guess.
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Old Sep 22, 15, 3:37 pm
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Last edited by Geauxtigers; Aug 14, 16 at 10:52 pm
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Old Sep 22, 15, 3:51 pm
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Originally Posted by Geauxtigers View Post
Do we know when he is flying these routes? I just booked an award ticket to SYR that goes through PHL on friday...I may want to change that to CLT
He's in DC today through Thursday morning. Thursday evening he flies to NY (Andrews Airforce Base-JFK).

Saturday morning he flies from JFK to PHL.

Sunday evening departure from PHL to FCO.

Full schedule is here
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Old Sep 22, 15, 4:05 pm
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On this trip, Francis will take Alitalia as far as Washington and then American Airlines the rest of the way.

(As a footnote, the dirty little secret of papal travel is that the press corps actually subsidizes the pope’s movements, since the roughly 70 reporters on the plane are asked to pay business class airfare in order to fly in coach. Since the 30 members of the pope’s entourage who fly in business aren’t paying anything, this means the cost of the charter is borne almost entirely by the people in steerage.)
So it seems like other than being a reporter or part of the Pope's entourage, we probably can't get a ticket on that AA flight since it is chartered?
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Old Sep 22, 15, 4:09 pm
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Originally Posted by supermintyfresh View Post
So it seems like other than being a reporter or part of the Pope's entourage, we probably can't get a ticket on that AA flight since it is chartered?
Of course it is chartered.
When the pontiff takes the national carrier of a country on the way back to Rome, however, things are often different. Those carriers rarely get to ferry a pope, so they make a big deal out of it. Often they provide a larger aircraft, so people can spread out, and the food and beverage service is usually first-rate.
How will AA provide first-rate food and beverage service? They don't have any expertise in that area.
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Old Sep 22, 15, 4:16 pm
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Originally Posted by malexander131 View Post
Interesting tidbit, an AA 772 will take Pope Francis on his US tour and back to Europe. Wonder how far in advance his upgrade clears?


Of note though, apparently the Pope typically flies Alitalia out and the "national carrier" of the country he's visiting back. Wonder how AA was selected?

http://www.cruxnow.com/church/2015/0...e-papal-plane/
This is great, I wonder if he's flying on a plane with F or just J? F would be much more comfortable for the Pope.
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Old Sep 22, 15, 4:17 pm
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Originally Posted by SeeBuyFly View Post
Of course it is chartered.How will AA provide first-rate food and beverage service? They don't have any expertise in that area.
Pope Francis doesn't seem like the type of person where such things are that important to him. I guess we will see whether that is true or not if he starts complaining that there is a paper liner on his meal tray rather than a cloth one.

Last edited by Fanjet; Sep 22, 15 at 8:04 pm
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Old Sep 22, 15, 4:37 pm
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I wonder if he'll notice if there isn't a PDB service.
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Old Sep 22, 15, 4:43 pm
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Originally Posted by blakepilot View Post
I wonder if he'll notice if there isn't a PDB service.
He flying commercial or is the aa plane a private charter
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Old Sep 22, 15, 5:23 pm
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Originally Posted by blakepilot View Post
I wonder if he'll notice if there isn't a PDB service.
Well, since he's on some historically LUS routes, and it's before 17OCT, his chance of proper PDB service should be a little higher.
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Old Sep 22, 15, 7:24 pm
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Originally Posted by sjpmurph01 View Post
Well, since he's on some historically LUS routes, and it's before 17OCT, his chance of proper PDB service should be a little higher.
Or not, as a LAA 772 will be crewed by LAA crew.

I wonder if the Vatican will rely on Ken Chase to select the wine? Will it be genuine Champagne, or Treviso Prosecco? Will they be using proper cloth placemats? Will they restore pistachios to the nut mix? FlyerTalkers want to know!

Charter flights, nobody is going to be buying seats on these other than the credentialed press, and they're in for the whole trip.

Last edited by JDiver; Sep 22, 15 at 8:53 pm
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Old Sep 22, 15, 8:08 pm
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Originally Posted by sjpmurph01 View Post
Well, since he's on some historically LUS routes, and it's before 17OCT, his chance of proper PDB service should be a little higher.
I can assume that there was probably an FA bidding fight to work this service. And given that, I think the Pope will receive a level of service from the FAs that most of us would envy.
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Old Sep 22, 15, 8:11 pm
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Originally Posted by malexander131 View Post
Interesting tidbit, an AA 772 will take Pope Francis on his US tour and back to Europe. Wonder how far in advance his upgrade clears?


Of note though, apparently the Pope typically flies Alitalia out and the "national carrier" of the country he's visiting back. Wonder how AA was selected?

http://www.cruxnow.com/church/2015/0...e-papal-plane/

So AA/TWA apparently have a long history of carrying the Pope:

Here is a list of other instances where a pope have traveled via American:

1999: TWA: STL-Rome (Pope John Paul II) – 767-300
1995: TWA: EWR-BWI-Rome (Pope John Paul II) – 767-300
1993: American Airlines: DEN-Rome (Pope John Paul II) – 767-300ER
This aircraft is still in service today. (Flying MIA-FRA this evening.)
1987: TWA: Eleven-day, nine-city tour (Pope John Paul II) – 727 & 747
1979: TWA: Six-day, six-city tour and ADW back to Rome (Pope John Paul II) – 727
1965: TWA: Rome-JFK-Rome (Pope Paul VI) – 707

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs...le-in-the-u-s/
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Old Sep 22, 15, 11:29 pm
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Originally Posted by Fanjet View Post
It's the largest U.S. carrier would be my guess.
it's also called "American Airlines" and its tail livery has a USA flag. Doesn't really get any closer to a flag carrier than that.
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