Delta Airlines Minneapolis Lansing
This is a review of Delta Airlines Minneapolis Lansing on a CR2 aircraft.
The trip was for the Thanksgiving Holiday to visit my family in Michigan.
Date: November 22, 2016
Flight: Delta / Endeavor 3824
From: Minneapolis – MSP
To: Lansing – LAN
Seats: 5D, 7C
The flight was during the holiday week so prices were a bit high. I searched for several days and found fares between $420-$600 for the non-stop flight on Delta, or connecting flights on American or United for the same price.
I ended up finding the fare for about $390 and booked it into a Basic Economy E fare on Delta. This fare is in the fare class where you do not get upgrades, cannot select seats until check-in and no cancellation.
Normally I would not book an E fare, as you never know if you will need flexibility to change the flight. In addition, I weighed the fact of selecting seats or not verses the additional $20 per-ticket charge and decided it was worth saving the $40 on the two tickets as it was for a holiday trip to visit family.
I am not a fan of these basic economy fares because Delta, and now United and American will simply take their current lowest fare and shift it into the basic economy bucket, which ultimately pushes all fares up. If the fares would actually be reduced to select basic economy, that is one thing but that is not the case for the three major airlines.
At check-in time, 24 hours before the flight, I went to select seats and received error messages that it was a basic economy fare and I could only select seats at check in. I tried again on the webpage and got the same error even though it was during the check in process.
I reached out to Delta via Twitter and they were able to select the seats for me.
This glitch was a bit annoying but it makes we question whether or not you can actually select seats when you have a basic economy fare since it was not possible to do it using the webpage.
We arrived at the airport about two hours before the flight and proceeded to the bag drop off area. Delta still handles the bag tagging by agents at Minneapolis so we joined a line of one other guest and was greeted by an agent within a few seconds. The agent scanned out boarding pass and issued the bag tag and she provided the receipt and offered to reprint out boarding passes. We both had them on our phones, so we declined. The agent thanked us and she wished us a good flight.
We joined the TSA-Precheck line and after waiting about three minutes, we reached the agent who checked our identity and invited us into the checkpoint area.
We waited about five minutes, before we both got through the line there and we proceeded into the terminal.
The total check-in and security time was less than 10 minutes.
My wife and I both have Global Entry which grants Pre-Check for five years. We both get the fee reimbursed by our credit cards via the Citi Prestige Card and Citi American Executive Cards. Many travel cards provide the benefit. If you don’t have one of those cards, you may be able to apply for one using my friend Lee’s affiliate link to CreditCards.Com via BaldThoughts.
The flight is operated on a regional jet and it was assigned a gate in the B terminal at the end of the airport.
We proceeded to the gate about 35 minutes before the departure time. The area had limited seating and most of the passengers were standing waiting.
A gate agent provided gate check tags to all the passengers with roller or other larger bags prior to boarding the aircraft.
Boarding began about five minutes later.
We were assigned Zone 1 which is the Fourth group to board.
We joined the line, when Zone 1 was called and the gate agent greeted us and asked us to scan our boarding passes. The agent used our names and she thanked us and wished us a good flight.
We proceeded down the jetway.
The flight attendant greeted us when we got to the airplane and we made our way to our seats.
We were seated in two different rows. I selected the aisle seat and my wife selected the window seat.
The seats were standard regional jet economy seats without power or USB ports. The aircraft also did not offer WiFi.
The seats was comfortable and was clean.
Although the aircraft appeared a bit old, the interior appeared to have been updated recently.
Boarding was efficient and the door was closed early.
We had a short taxi to the de-ice pad, where we waited for about 45-50 minutes while the plane was de-iced.
It appeared that only one truck was operating at the time, which caused the delay.
It was warm since the air is turned off while the plane is on the pad, so the delay seemed a lot longer.
Finally, the de-icing process was complete, and we taxied to the other side of the airport before heading up in the air.
In Flight Experience
The flight between Minneapolis and Lansing is about one hour in length, so we spent more time on the ground than in the air.
Shortly after we reached a cruising altitude, the flight attendant walked through the cabin with a snack cart and she offered beverages and a choice between cookies or peanuts.
When the flight attendant reached my seat, she greeted me warmly and offered the snack. I requested the Biscoff Cookies and she provided two packages before offering a drink.
I requested Ginger Ale. The flight attendant provided the beverage and she thanked me and asked me to enjoy.
The flight attendant returned shortly before landing to pick up the used cups and trash.
We approached Lansing as the sun was setting.
The flight landed about 45 minutes behind schedule.
There was a short taxi to the gate before the flight attendant made an announcement about the gate check bags being available near the aircraft.
As I departed the plane, the flight attendant thanked me and she wished my wife and I a good day.
We proceeded to the baggage claim area and waited about 15 minutes for our bag to be delivered. The bag was returned in good condition.
Overall it was an uneventful flight. The flight attendant was friendly it was kind of her to offer two cookies with the drink. The delay on the de-ice pad was a bit annoying; however, considering it was a busy holiday week, it was understandable. We were surprised that we were not able to select our seats using the app or webpage, but Delta was able to sort that out prior to us arriving at the airport. Hopefully our next flight on a basic economy fare will be without issue.
Have you had any issues with a basic economy fare?