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sailingsailing Jan 13th, 2007 12:02 PM

US Airways White Plains, NY to DCEst
I need to book a flight for my 16 year old to travel from Westchester County Airport to W DC (Regan Int'l Airport.)

Looks like US Air has direct flights at convenient times. She will be flying in February.Does anyone know if the flight schedules are usually on time? Is this airline safe and reputable? I have to say that their telephone personnel have so far left me wondering.....

Also what is the best way or place to buy trip insurance?

Thank you for your help.

MikeT Jan 13th, 2007 12:43 PM

If you are flying to Washington-National, USAirways is likely your only choice from White Plains. Of course it is safe and reputable, it is one of the largest airlines in the country. Whether it will be on time is anyone's guess, but given your options, it's probably worth the risk.

sailingsailing Jan 13th, 2007 02:32 PM

Thanks for the info, Mike. Do you know anything about trip insurance?
Such as where to purchase it and if there is are any exclusions that would make it not worth buying?

Also - is there any reason it would be better to book the flight from JFK or LaG. or Newark than White Plains?

Many thanks again.

rkkwan Jan 13th, 2007 02:45 PM

The flights are operated by Air Wisconsin as USAirways Express on a regional jet.

From, the early morning flight 3635 arrives on-time (within 15 minute of schedule) 40 times out of 44 since October. 2 late and 2 excessive (like hours late, not uncommon for regional jet flights in the Northeast).

4069 doesn't fare as good. Of the 49 flights, 33 arrive on-time, 5 late, 2 very late and <b>9 excessive</b>.

Same thing with 4093, of the 47 flights 33 on-time, 3 late, 1 very late and <b>10 excessive</b>.

Air Wisconsin is a large regional carrier with 70 regional jets. They used to be a big feeder for United, now exclusively USAirways.

J62 Jan 13th, 2007 04:29 PM

The advantage of LGA is that there are hourly flights all day long. If you arrive a the airport early you can often just get on the next flight rather than waiting. The LGA to DCA route is competitive, so fares are kept in line.

If you live in SW CT, Westchester or Putnam counties then White Plains (HPN) airport is easy to get to.

J62 Jan 13th, 2007 04:39 PM

A quick check of mid-week Feb dates shows HPN to DCA $250+taxes RT, and LGA to DCA $100.

It's a 30min drive from HPN to LGA. I would do LGA myself for the price difference and frequency of flights.

Many people aren't comfortable navigating around NYC by car, which I understand.

nytraveler Jan 13th, 2007 04:42 PM

Not sure why you want trip insurance. In case of weather delay or mechanical problems delaying the flight trip insurance can no nothing that the airline won;t do anyway (refund your money or get you on the next flight).

Trip insurance is usually for a tour or cuise or expensive package - to repay you if you fall ill and can;t go- of become ill on the trip and need to come back to the US.

From New York to DC - don;t understand it.

Separately - to get to Reagan I agree that flying from LGA is a much better idea - and less likely to have problems/issues unless there's a blizzard or something.

sailingsailing Jan 13th, 2007 05:54 PM

Thank you all for such useful information. I'll check out LGA

HowardR Jan 14th, 2007 05:08 AM

The main (only?) reason to fly from Westchester Airport would be if its location is convenient. Otherwise, you have the disadvantage of a long wait if your particular flight is cancelled or delayed. And, as has been previously noted, if you are at a larger airport (say, LaGuardia), there's always another flight an hour or so later.

EmilyC Jan 14th, 2007 06:00 AM

If you are going as far as LGA, then why not consider Amtrak??

rizzo0904 Jan 14th, 2007 06:06 AM

Westchester County Airport is the problem in this scenario. It is not a passenger friendly airport. A few years ago (maybe 7-10??) there was a new housing development built near the end of the the runway. The homeowner's associated petitioned the town to limit the amount of commercial air traffic due to noise. Money always talks so the airport was limited to 4 gates to park aircraft.

Instead of cutting back on flights, it just creates a back-up of aircraft trying to park. Often you will land and have to wait for 30 minutes or more to park. That's why so many of the flights are late.

As a pilot, I HATE that airport.

rizzo0904 Jan 14th, 2007 06:07 AM

As for LGA, it can be a total nightmare with delays. But you do have more flights so rebooking is easier.

J62 Jan 14th, 2007 06:30 AM

According to old posts OP lives in Westchester, near the Tappan Zee Bridge. From there to LGA is about 30miles. A bit further than HPN (15mi) but hardly all that far.

docdan Jan 14th, 2007 06:36 AM

I grew up in the DC area and I'd have to second the idea of considering AMTRAK. We don't know how much longer this option will be around and it is a very pleasant trip. From Union Station in downtown DC the Capitol is only a ten min walk and connections to Metro are easy. However, I cannot comment how easy/difficult it is to get from NE of NY to Pen sta in downtown NY, if you are using the NY commuter rail.

sailingsailing Jan 15th, 2007 09:06 AM

Thanks again for so much info. I don't mind the drive to LAG, altho HPN is closer and would be convenient. The flight is for my daughter. She is attending a Leadership conference and their staff only picks up at DCA, not at the train station. Apparently the stationis about 1hour from their campus.

I called US Air to get information on flights from LAG, and the shuttle is almost 2x the cost of the direct flights from Westchester. So, am I doing something wrong with booking? Is there a better airline than US Air? Any additional info. is greatly appreciated. ANd thanks again, everyone has been so helpful.

HowardR Jan 15th, 2007 09:35 AM

I'm a frequent user of Westchester Airport and I've never encounted the situation that rizzo0904 mentioned.
My biggest complaint about the airport are the ridiculously high rates for parking there.
My biggest fear (and I call it that rather than a problem) is that if my flight is cancelled because of mechanical problems, there's no substitute plane handy and the next scheduled flight to my destination would probably be hours away....if not the next day!
Still, in spite of my complaints and fears, I still use the airport regularly, because it's so damned convenient!

J62 Jan 15th, 2007 12:13 PM

check that's where i saw the fare for $50 each way.

sailingsailing Jan 15th, 2007 01:36 PM

well, I still haven't figured out what to do! Westchester is sooo convenient, but I am concerned about what happens if the flight is delayed or cancelled. Since its my daughter flying solo and heading for a conference, I want to maximize the likelihood that all will go off as closely as possible to &quot;as planned&quot;! The best fare I found on was $180 round trip which is still cheaper than Westchester's $268. Of course, with gas, parking, tolls, it's a close decision. The $50 each way must be for midweek flights. What to do, what to do? Any ideas to help me decide?

rizzo0904 Jan 15th, 2007 02:20 PM

When I flew out of there for US Airways, we would often have Senator Clinton on board. If you can figure out her normal flight, I'm sure it will get there on time :).

HowardR Jan 15th, 2007 03:16 PM

Yes, it would make sense for Senator Clinton to use that airport, since it's less than 10 miles from her home.

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