Trip Report SFO-BOS: United premium transcontinental Economy Plus
I was super excited to fly on my old friend, the Boeing 757-200. This always seemed like the “grown up” narrow-body jet, especially when I flew the airplane a lot cross-country in high school and college. This was in contrast to the more pedestrian Boeing 737, which I associated with intra-California connector flights from SFO, and it always kind of seemed like a let-down after stepping off of a transpacific flight on a 747. Now of course, the 737 is plying the transcontinental routes, making the 757 an even more special treat.
So I was excited to fly it, in the old p.s. configuration with lie-flat business class seats, on this redeye from San Francisco to Boston.
SFO-BOS is one of the “premium transcontinental service” routes on United. Why the airline ditched the “p.s.” brand is strange to me, because it clearly denoted which routes had enhanced service and which ones didn’t. On my ticket, for example, it said there was Buy on Board meal service, but in reality, there was complimentary meal service for Economy Plus.
Now, I had gotten up around 4:30-5 in the morning, flown from San Diego to San Francisco, spent a day in town shopping, meeting up with friends, and having a family reunion dinner. And so I was pretty exhausted by the time my 11:35pm redeye came around. I was ready to go to sleep.
But, I was also curious to see what the meal service would be, on a flight leaving so late.
It turned out that the meal service had the same quantity of food as my previous experience with a premium transcontinental dinner experience EWR-LAX, and the quality might have been even better!
We had a choice between chicken with pasta or a veggie wrap. I chose the chicken with pasta, and it was a cold dish with a grilled chicken breast on a bed of pasta and vegetables. There was a side of fruit and cheesecake, and the pretzels that all Economy passengers get.
I’d venture to say that this chilled chicken was superior to the chicken I had on the other flight, because it was a whole chicken breast rather than pieces (which could have come from a variety of sources). And the pasta was just only lightly dressed, with crisp, fresh tasting vegetables like red bell pepper. I preferred this over the excessively cheesy and creamy chicken with orzo on that EWR-LAX flight. Perhaps these cold redeye meals are fresh, while the regular hot meals are all previously frozen.
I did manage to get some sleep, which was not a surprise given how tired I was.
Then before landing, we got these blueberry yogurt cakes, which often make an appearance on my SFO-Europe breakfast meals. Pretty decent, for a domestic flight.
And then to top it off, as we were disembarking, the flight attendant at the door had a silver tray of these warm blueberry and cranberry muffins that she was offering. I guess there weren’t a lot of takers in business class! Next to her was a whole cardboard box of the packaged blueberry yogurt cakes, which I assume she would hand out after exhausting the warm business class muffins.
So all in all, there was quite a bit of high quality food on this flight! There might have even been too much food catered, given the hour of the flight, but I’m not complaining!