Michael Burgess flies from Boston to Portland on Alaska Airways.

The plane:

A Boeing 737-800.

Class: First.


Our seats: We were in 2D and 2F. Good broad seats with plenty of space. The seats did not recline very far, so the row in front was not in your face.

Flight time: 6hr 20m. We were a little late in moving away from the gate, but the time was made up during the flight.

Fellow passengers: The First Class area had five rows of six seats, which were all full. The whole plane was full. Usual mix of passengers.

Entertainment: No screens on back of seats, although a tablet was provided. Free for First Class, $14.60 in Economy. This had six films and 10 TV shows on it. Ear buds were also provided.

Food and drink: I'd say the excellent hot omelette, served just after our 8.30am take off, would be the best omelette ever served on an airline. Drinks were available throughout the flight, along with snacks — not just the inedible pretzel option served on many American airlines.

Service: Pleasant and unobtrusive, with needs fulfilled.

Luggage: Standard two bags but we travel light and are seldom concerned by baggage restrictions.

Airport experience: Boston Logan is large and busy. Dropping off the rental car was easy and the transfer bus was well set up and easy to use. Pleasant desk people made catching the flight easy after a somewhat hectic drive through the early morning traffic from Cape Cod. Gate area was clean and tidy, with all the services needed. Portland is a standard airport with the baggage carousels at one end and the light-rail transfer to the city centre at the other. Helpful staff made the transfer very easy.


Would fly again? Definitely. It was good to find a usable, pleasant and comfortable airline in the US.