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UA: SEA-MKE r/t: 4 (maybe 6?) VDBs, 3 UGs, BUT...

UA: SEA-MKE r/t: 4 (maybe 6?) VDBs, 3 UGs, BUT...

Old Jun 25, 09, 8:08 am
  #1  
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UA: SEA-MKE r/t: 4 (maybe 6?) VDBs, 3 UGs, BUT...

I had to turn them ALL down.

The story starts out at 3:30am, where upon waking up and futzing over a less than packed suitcase for my GF (the main player in this tragedy) we determine that the window for taking the bus to Seatac had closed. We hop a cab ($45) and head to the airport and proceed straight to the F Chicken. I was flying a Y ticket with an F segment SEA-ORD (minus a $300 voucher), and she was flying on a separate PNR that I got with a VDB from earlier in the year. Check in is smooth and we head towards security, making use of the Premier line to bypass about a hundred people.

Unfortunately, SEA TSA is slower than molasses and the line we were in apparently had only 2 people actually WORKING the checkpoint while the rest were in some sort of morning cumbaya, no doubt wondering how they could possibly speed things up at the metal detectors... 30 minutes later and still good on time, we roll up to the north satellite and head to our gates. The plane is full and there's a SEA-ORD flight less than two hours later that would still let us catch our ORD-MKE flight, so I go up and ask if they're looking for people for VDBs.

"Yep, but you'll get in to Milwaukee at 6:47pm. I can get you seats on SEA-ORD at 11am both in F if you want to bump, but I can't get confirmed seats on the 8am (but you can of course standby for it)."

"YES!", I think. I go and tell the GF.. "NO!", she says. We can't get to Milwaukee three hours late, because of our ride. "Call them and ask?" "No." "But, we'd be sitting together in F for our longest flight and have less waiting around in Ord..." "No."

Score card: 2 UGs and 2 VDBs turned down. We board and start to head out.

Because I'm a super nice guy and she's never been in F, I ask the purser if I can swap seats with her (once, not back and forth) and trade her my nice window seat in F for a window seat in E-. It's been a long time since I've been in E-... and I missed out on my Hindu meal! (I forgot that this was my default setting right now/that I ordered it since I'm so rarely in F and meal choices don't matter 96% of the time...)

Hours pass and we touch down in ORD after an uneventful and cramped flight. Nothing major to report, except for a great view of Mt. Rainier while climbing from SEA. We touch down and make our way over to the gate with PLENTY of time to spare. Head over to C17 for the United spin the wheel promo and get free E+ on our next flight.... ..except that I'm 2P and we're on a CRJ, so it's doubly useless. Still, there's supposedly another prize we can send in for, so we'll see.

Almost flight time for our 17 minute flight ORD-MKE on UX. Again, for the SECOND time in one day, they're looking for volunteers, this time offering confirmed seats on the next flight in one hour. We'd get in at 5pm instead of 3:47pm.

"YES! What luck! Twice in one day and THIS time it'll work", I think. I go and tell the GF.. "NO!", she says. One hour is too much for two tickets (which I wanted FOR HER), because of our ride. "Call them and ask? It's just an hour.." "No, I just want to get there." "But..." "No."

Score card: 4 VDBs, 2 UGs turned down. It goes against every instinct I have!

We arrive after about 20 minutes of taxiing and 17 minutes of flying, get picked up and have the week in MKE. Brewer's game (HOT, they got stomped 7 to 3), Miller tour (where every other phrase is "MILLER TIME!"), a wedding, meet the folks and old friends (she's originally from there), and visiting the sights. Time to head home.

We're up after about 4 hours of sleep (Thank you Old Milwaukee German Beer Hall) and are on our way to the airport. MKE is pretty small and we breeze through check in and security. In fact, the guy at the check in read us off our PNR numbers since I didn't have them handy at that exact moment to punch into the chicken... That was odd... We get to the gate for our MKE-DEN flight, and I had seen that it was pretty full. This time around, we've got time on the other end so I go up and see (foolishly) if there's a VDB opportunity.

(I really like VDBs...)

The plane is EXACTLY at full capacity (Bravo, UA, but damn it!). We hop on our CRJ and head out to DEN. The flight was uneventful and soon we're in DEN. We hop off, and start heading to the other gate. With the gate nearly in sight, she states that she needs to head to the restroom and will be right back. I say, "Alright, I'll meet you at the gate. I saw that this flight was full too and want to see what's up." "No." "er.. Wha?" "Wait here for me." "But.. the gate.. it's like.. right. there." "No. Wait here for me." "Alright sweetie..."

We get to the gate and I look at the information sign. There's like 20 people waiting seat assignments and 16 people on standby (something I knew from MKE, since I asked that GA there what the DEN-SEA flight was like). Then, it pops up: "We are looking for volunteers".

I immediately get in line while she heads off to get something to eat (we both were hungry). The line is fairly long, mainly with people looking for seat assignments (which prompted the GA to announce several times that if you're confirmed, just sit down and he'll have boarding passes for you shortly). I get up after about 10-15 minutes in line, "I saw on the sign that you're looking for volunteers. I've got two seats in E+ if you need them.." "No, we're not looking for volunteers."

Crap. I honestly have to wonder about those signs. They don't seem to ever be accurate. It also said that there were 7 seats in F available (which I later confirmed was the case, but didn't take the upgrade/give the upgrade so I could sit with the GF.. in the middle seat. I was hoping that I could have paid for my upgrade with e500s and then the GA could have been super nice and opup'd the GF, but he wasn't in the mood and VDB upgrades are strictly verboten. Some lucky standby pax got up to F instead..).

Score card: 4 (or 6? Maybe if I had gotten in line earlier there might have been a VDB op, if the sign was accurate.), 3 UG all turned down.

Flying into SEA, I was happy to be home. UA had delivered everything perfectly: All of the flights were on time (or slightly early), my special meal was on board for the F segment, everything worked perfectly, the flight attendants were on top of everything, the ground operation was smooth and my priority bags at MKE came out first... Everything had gone exactly to plan...

..and I hate that! Maybe next time..
SeattleFlyerGuy is offline  
Old Jun 26, 09, 12:19 pm
  #2  
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Dude, you need to find a new girlfriend!

If she didn't want to miss the ride from the airport, I would've just sent her along, taken 1 VDB, and caught a cab later to meet up with the rest of the crew.
aisleorwindow is offline  
Old Jun 26, 09, 12:43 pm
  #3  
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Originally Posted by g_leyser View Post
Dude, you need to find a new girlfriend!

If she didn't want to miss the ride from the airport, I would've just sent her along, taken 1 VDB, and caught a cab later to meet up with the rest of the crew.
I suggested that. Shot. Down.

Ah well. Everything else is good, so I'll let it slide..
SeattleFlyerGuy is offline  
Old Jun 26, 09, 8:23 pm
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Wow, you're still with this girl? You're apparently wayyy more tolerant than I would have been...
uavking is offline  
Old Jun 26, 09, 11:24 pm
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Originally Posted by uavking View Post
Wow, you're still with this girl? You're apparently wayyy more tolerant than I would have been...
Me to!
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Seriously.
MatthewLAX is offline  

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