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rkkwan's CoachFlyer report: CO IAH-AMS, CDG-IAH

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9/1/06 CO46 IAH-AMS

IAH

I got off work a little early last Friday and arrived 5:18p at Terminal E, 2 hours prior to my 7:15p flight. BP printed, no bags to check. I used the non-Elite security line (don't ask why), and got through in 7 minutes. There were about 20 people ahead of me, but line moved fast. Other than all people needing to remove footwear (even sandals), there was hardly any difference compared to before 8/10.

With two hours to spare, I headed to the IAH favorite, Pappadeux, to have dinner before the flight. For us CO flyers, flying out to Europe from IAH is a much more leisurely experience than from EWR.

Boarding

Boarding had already started when I got to the gate 6:40p. The 767-400 was about 80% full in coach (40 empty seats out of 200), but still lots of overhead space on CO's new 767s with extra-large bins for my new 21.5" Skyway rollaboard. New security requirement also helped. I had seat 17D, inside aisle in the 2nd row, and 17E was open. Pillow, blanklet and headphones are packed in a sealed bag.

Flight technicals

The 767-400 is N67058, the 8th of CO's 16 767-400. Delivered new Jan 2002.

Door closed 7:12, 3 minute early. Push back 7:20, and we took off Runway 9 at 7:32p. It was a bumpy ride all the way across the Atlantic, via a relatively southern route, going almost straight east from Nova Scotia. Touched down at AMS 11:40a next morning, and we arrived gate 11:54a, 1 minute early, after a long taxi. This is as textbook as one can get.

Inflight

For a change, the personal A/V screens were working for everybody. I even watched Da Vinci Code, which was just loaded for September.

Dinner was unremarkable, as usual. But at least edible, and better than my last IAH-Europe flight 2 years ago. FAs walked around with water very frequently.

CO's 767s have 32" pitch in coach, and I really find them quite acceptable. With the center seat open, I could spread out a little and had some good sleep.

Breakfast was really disappointing. It consists of one croissant with some jam, 3 small pieces of oranges and one grape. No yogurt, no cereal. It's a disgrace. But with a noon-time arrival, I guess most passengers will go get lunch soon after.

AMS

It's a real delight to use AMS. CO and most US airlines use Pier G in the far "left" end, but I deplaned at 12:00, got to immigration at 12:06 after walking on a series of people movers, and was in Schipol Plaza at 12:08. It's a real model of airport efficiency that is unsurpassed anywhere. [Even newer, well-acclaimed airports like HKG can't compare.]

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