As part of a bloggers tour with the Clear Lake Chamber of Commerce, I was provided with a free boarding pass to Air Choice One to facilitate this review. All thoughts are 100% honest and my own.
I always have anxiety when flying and not for the reasons you may think. I’m always worried I will miss my boarding time or that I will be taken away for super pat-down. Having NF for me also means that I have a ton of metal in my right leg. Rods and pins here and there to keep my leg stable and in place. As we all know Metal = Detector going off! In big city airports I am always taken to the side for extra scanning and it always makes me panic (even though I have no need to.)
The second I walked into MCW this time around, I was instantly relaxed. I loved the fact that the airport wasn’t in mass chaos and I loved that the Air Choice One and MCW crew greeted all of us with a pleasant smile. All 8 of us were able to get our boarding passes in minutes with no problem and it left us enough time to enjoy some breakfast at the airport restaurant.
Them People at The Air Port Cafe is a wonderful little cafe. I had the #1 (scrambled egg, choice of meat (sausage for me,) and toast). A nice and simple breakfast. Very affordable too ($4.) The staff was very quick and accommodating to make sure I was able to eat my meal and pay my bill in enough time to get through security with no panic attacks. (I may be exaggerating, I don’t really have panic attacks.)
It was time to go through security and this is the point where I really start to get sweaty palms. Partially because there’s a ton of people and I feel like I have to race through it like a gold medal winner. Here at MCW it was easy. I knew we could take our time because there were only 8 of us, all on the same flight going through security. (I also knew the plane wasn’t going to leave without me because they could have easily noticed had I not been there.)
One thing that I always like to do when going through airport security, whether in a small or large airport, is to make sure all of my liquids (in small 3 oz bottles) are in their proper baggies and hanging out at the very top of my luggage. That way, in case anything crazy were to happen in security and your bags need to get searched, those puppies are right there on top.
Our flight to Chicago was very easy going and fun. The chairs on the plane swiveled so if four people wanted to, you could turn them so you were in a circle. The fact that they swiveled also meant MACHO leg room. For tall girls like me, leg room is a plus. Also on the flight, we enjoyed some light reading (Destination: Clear Lake). When you were done reading your Destination: Clear Lake magazine, Them People at the Airport had a nice collection of books that they lend out to people while they fly and you can return them when you return from your flight. The Ventura Library donates the books to Them People.
Our last hours in Chicago turned dark…..in terms of weather. Right at the time we got on the train to head to the airport, the radar was giving us a gift, but it wasn’t one we liked. We were forewarned that there would be a chance that our flight would be delayed or canceled. Since our plane was just a little guy, it has a harder time flying in bad weather–I’ll call it a fair weather plane. We got in, got our boarding passes and indeed were told that our flight home was delayed. The attendant asked for our phone number so they could text us updates on our flight, however we never received any. For me, there was a little bit of confusion because I then saw on the flight screen that our flight was on time. We discovered our flight was canceled after we were scheduled for take off.
Air Choice one offered us vouchers to get on the next days flight. We were thankful there was room on the 10:30 and 5 pm flights for us to return home. They also has some coupon codes for us to use to get a discounted rate at a hotel. We packed back up and headed out to our hotel for another wild night in Chicago! And by wild I mean most of us went directly to bed. Chicago wore us out!! We were ready to go home the next day and were able to make it through security and getting our boarding passes with no problems. I took some travel sickness medication this time because I got a bit motion sick on the way to Chicago. I don’t know if it helped at all but our flight home was smooth sailing!
All in all my experience was pleasant with Air Choice one. The staff was a pleasure to interact with. I am excited to jump on board again to fly to St. Louis in September for an NFL game! Moral of the story however is: 1. keep the communication going with your air line, 2. always pack extra undies (you would think being the race director of an underwear run I’d always have extras–yes I washed my undies in the sink.) 3. Garrett Popcorn cures any frustrations.