Welcome aboard! Photo: Kristin Atkinson
Your first time is something youâ€™ll always remember. Maybe it was with the love of your life or you were even with your parents or had a close family member nearby. You may be nervous, not fully knowing what to do. Feelings of excitement, joy and even some bumps up and down happened. But a helpful hand guides you through a very exciting ride and you end up with a great touchdown.
Yes, that first time you ever fly in an airplane is pure joy and everlasting.
Yet for some, the thought of going through a crowded airport, getting into a pressurized tube with wings flown by a total stranger at speeds exceeding 500 mph, thousands of feet in the air, can be terrifying.
Thankfully there are programs at many airports to help nervous travelers.
JetBlue’s Mint seating is available on certain A321s.
In the premium transcontinental game Seattle doesn’t get much attention, but things are about to change with the introduction of jetBlue’s Mint product.Â While the premium experience might not be the first of its type in the U.S. market, it does give Seattle a true shot at giving passengers something better than a traditional domestic first class seat for those five-to-six hour transcontinental flights.
In preparation for jetBlue’s recent inaugural flight from Seattle (SEA) to Boston (BOS), we were able to give their Mint seats a proper test-sit in the name of journalistic thoroughness.
JetBlue loves to name it’s jets, too. This one is called “One Mint, Two Mint, Blue Mint, You Mint.”
The seats recline to 6’8″ â€” jetBlue says that makes them the longest lie-flat domestic seats in the biz. Perks of the new service include gate-to-gate Fly-Fi WiFi, an extended slate of in-flight entertainment options on a 15″ seatback screen, fancy headphones, and even fancier meals from a menu that changes monthly.
Norwegian’s inaugural flight to Seattle from London Gatwick, a Boeing 789, rolls up to the parking stand
It was a homecoming of sorts (at least for the Everett, Wash.-built 787-9) as Norwegian kicked off new 4x-weekly service from Gatwick to Seattle on Sunday, Sept. 17.
Norwegian flight DY 7131 taxiing after landing at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Gotta love those red-headed jetliners.
It was a lovely Seattle morning. The rain that had been forecast was late in arriving, and the plane landed early; everything came together nicely.
Firefighters from the Port of Seattle transport a simulated casualty during the airport’s recent triennial disaster drill
The FAA requires airports to conduct a comprehensive disaster drill every three years. On July 12, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) did its thing, and it was quite a sight.
Volunteer “victims” hung out in a comfortable hangar, waiting for the drill to begin
Volunteer victims included employees of the airport, several airlines, airfield support companies, the FAA, and the TSA. They received elaborate makeup at a remote hangar in order to maximize the realism of the drill.
Raptor biologist Bud Anderson, left, holds a red-tailed hawk chick after it was retrieved from a nest 80 feet above the ground in woods adjacent to the airport.
Bird strikes are a problem for aviation, especially large birds. Damage can be expensive, and bird strikes have caused damage to aircraft that results in flight-control issues, a la US Airways Flight 1549.
One of the parents of the raptor chicks being relocated reacts angrily to the intrusion.
According to an FAA report, “The annual cost of wildlife strikes to the USA civil aviation industry in 2015 was projected to be a minimum of 69,497 hours of aircraft downtime and $229 million in direct and other monetary losses. Actual losses are likely much higher.”