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Thread: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

  1. #1
    griegle1 is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Jul 2006 arlington, virginia Posts: 485

    tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    FYI, Tradewind aviation is now booking for the later part of 2007. Service starts in October. The scheduled flights are discounted to $350 instead of $495 each way if you book before the end of May. The service will operate 7 days a week with at least one round trip and sometimes two. The agent we use there indicates that some consideration is being given to year around service next year.

  2. #2
    KevinS is online now
    Senior Insider Joined: Jul 2003 Boston Posts: 19,747

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    I have the forms in my in-box to return before the end of May for my November trip. Year 'round service would appeal to me.

  3. #3
    Cheri is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Oct 2002 St. Louis, Missouri Posts: 2,431

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    $350 is not a bad price for SJU-SBH considering Winair is charging $250? for the 10 minute flight SXM-SBH. However, I just checked flights from St. Louis to San Juan for Feb 2008 and there is no chance of getting to San Juan in time for the 3:00 pm SJU-SBH Tradewinds flight, the only flight they offer as of yet. If we wanted to overnight though, the cost from St. Louis to San Juan is only $324 on AA & Delta right now. $324 + $350 for the Tradewinds...what a bargain. Bummer that we cannot do it all in one day. I wonder if there is any chance of Tradewinds adding flights?

  4. #4
    griegle1 is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Jul 2006 arlington, virginia Posts: 485

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    they were talking about an 8 am for the overnight scenario. The plane has to go to SBH at that time for the11 a.m. return anyway.

  5. #5
    jdr is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Apr 2003 Boston Posts: 478

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    $350 is not a bad price for SJU-SBH considering Winair is charging $250? for the 10 minute flight SXM-SBH. However, I just checked flights from St. Louis to San Juan for Feb 2008 and there is no chance of getting to San Juan in time for the 3:00 pm SJU-SBH Tradewinds flight, the only flight they offer as of yet. If we wanted to overnight though, the cost from St. Louis to San Juan is only $324 on AA & Delta right now. $324 + $350 for the Tradewinds...what a bargain. Bummer that we cannot do it all in one day. I wonder if there is any chance of Tradewinds adding flights?
    um, that's $350 each way.

  6. #6
    fins85258 is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: May 2005 Scottsdale, AZ Posts: 3,502

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    There is a way to get to San Juan from STL if you take the redeye out of Houston.

    Continental (3455) has an early evening flight from STL to Houston and then a red eye (1542) to San Juan that gets in at 5 or 6 in the morning. It would seem the next thing to evaluate is the cost of the flights to St Marteen and then on to SBH or the Tradewinds flight round trip to SBH.
    "Go to Heaven for the Climate or Hell for the Company"

  7. #7
    KevinS is online now
    Senior Insider Joined: Jul 2003 Boston Posts: 19,747

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    Happy Birthday Fins!

    You're looking at the cost from the right viewpoint. Yes, Tradewind is $350 each way for their shared charter, but when you consider that it is almost always less expensive to fly ito SJU than it is to SXM, and that Winair is well north of $200 R/T, then the premium isn't quite as bad. For some it works, for some it doesn't. Last November it worked for me on the way down. This May/June is their off-season, and I have no choice but to fly through SXM. This coming November I will be doing the math on the Tradewind connection again.

    Getting in that early in the day will give you a lot of time to kill if the shared charter remains at 3PM. Perhaps a day rate in a hotel? I get to SJU between 11 and Noon, and go to one of the beachfront hotels for lunch between flights.

  8. #8
    JEK is offline
    Senior Insider Joined: Jan 2004 In the ether . . . Posts: 51,697

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    Kevin,
    For me the the avoidance of the worry and consternation of SXM has a real value which must be considered.
    Also, on the 3:00 PM departure, we arrived around noon and by the time we collected luggage at the AA belt and made it all the way to the Tradewinds counter, most of that big wait time was eaten up. As soon as all the by-the-seat passengers arrived and the crew was ready we departed before the scheduled 3:00 PM departure. I'm using them again in January '08 in conjunction with AA FF tickets from IAD-SJU.
    The Marius 100th Birthday Party -- June 5, 2023

  9. #9
    Cheri is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Oct 2002 St. Louis, Missouri Posts: 2,431

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    we cannot do it all in one day. I wonder if there is any chance of Tradewinds adding flights?
    um, that's $350 each way.

    [/quote]

    Using credit card points to get to SJU, it would not be all that bad for the peace of mind....I guess. And thanks Fins for that info, but doubtful we would want to fly all night from Houston. Looks like we'll stick to SXM anyway.

  10. #10
    claudia is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Sep 2003 pittsburgh Posts: 2,639

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    You've made me feel better about cancelling my Tradewind and USAIR to SJU flights in Feb. I couldn't get to SJU before 1:55 pm for the 3pm scheduled Tradewind flight, and I worried and worried and finally just chickened out.Since the USAIR legs were $238 RT the extra Tradewind cost was really a wash.If I find I can get to SJU early eanough, I'll definitely take the Tradewind scheduled flight in the future.However,I checked online for overnight accommodations in SJU just in case, and nothing looked very appealing to me, considering I'd have to pay for an extra day vacation to get to SB.

  11. #11
    PBnJ is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Mar 2005 St Barth Posts: 2,504

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    In our experience with TW, making a connection was a breeze. We were three of 7 people on the flight, so my assumption is that they will wait for you. We were also escorted to the front of the loooong security line which was nice. We went right through and downstairs. In plenty of time. Even the pilots were nice. In our situation the pilots informed us of bad weather on SBH. He gave us two options. One, was to stay over in SJU and get an early flight in the morning. Two, was to try to get to SXM and wait to see if the weather clears. We all decided that it would be nice to be closer, so we opted for the second option. That way we could even make the late ferry if we had to. And to our surprise, once we got close, we flew right over SXM and the pilots said "OK, were going to give it a shot". They did, and we arrived safely and I must say, the pilots did one heck of a job. I would suggest using them every time.
    I don't have a solution but I admire the problem.

  12. #12
    claudia is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Sep 2003 pittsburgh Posts: 2,639

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    The service for scheduled Tradewinds flights, as opposed to the charter, does not include the expedited service you've described, at least according to the representative I questioned.He told me that with the scheduled flight, someone will meet you at baggage, which is after the long lines, I expect.

  13. #13
    PBnJ is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Mar 2005 St Barth Posts: 2,504

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    Actually, Wick, we were on a scheduled flight. We got our luggage from the carousel, asked one of the porters to take them to the TW counter. next we checked in with the rep. He then took our bags, jumped over the counter and walked us through. Very nice experience. No long lines, no wait. I was very impressed. The same guy who checked us in, also drove us to the plane in the van after he loaded our luggage. Tipped him and the porter as a thank you.
    I don't have a solution but I admire the problem.

  14. #14
    KevinS is online now
    Senior Insider Joined: Jul 2003 Boston Posts: 19,747

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    There is a sometimes looooong security line that you have to negotiate between the Rome Aviation counter where you checkin and drop your bags, and the actual gate used by Tradewind. I'm hoping that this is the line that Bin was referring too. If you're ahead of schedule, and happen to have a Delta Crown Room Card, there is a Crown Room conveniently located at the top of the stairs above the Tradewind gate, perfectly located for access to a clean bathroom and perhaps a drop of liquid refreshment.

  15. #15
    PBnJ is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Mar 2005 St Barth Posts: 2,504

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    There is a sometimes looooong security line that you have to negotiate between the Rome Aviation counter where you checkin and drop your bags, and the actual gate used by Tradewind. I'm hoping that this is the line that Bin was referring too.
    Yes Kev, it is. It was an unexpected pleasure to bypass the line. We were walked right up the the checkpoint.
    I don't have a solution but I admire the problem.

  16. #16
    claudia is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Sep 2003 pittsburgh Posts: 2,639

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    Thanks! At the time I made the reservations, the service was brand new and the rep may have been afraid to make any promises he couldn't keep.The only reason we were able to cancel without consequences, was the fact that the policy was not yet enunciated.

  17. #17
    PBnJ is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Mar 2005 St Barth Posts: 2,504

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    No problem. I would be curious, however, to know if this was in fact the typical practice. That was in March, but has been our only experience with them. I would wonder if anybody else had a similar experience.
    I don't have a solution but I admire the problem.

  18. #18
    JEK is offline
    Senior Insider Joined: Jan 2004 In the ether . . . Posts: 51,697

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    No problem. I would be curious, however, to know if this was in fact the typical practice. That was in March, but has been our only experience with them. I would wonder if anybody else had a similar experience.
    We had the same per-seat experience in February. As soon as all our luggage was deposited at the TW desk we went to the head of the very long TSA line and into the gate area. On the return to SJU the immigration line is bypassed and the pilots lead you to the airline crew counter. At customs all the baggage is collected on one cart and again head of the line privileges.
    The Marius 100th Birthday Party -- June 5, 2023

  19. #19
    KevinS is online now
    Senior Insider Joined: Jul 2003 Boston Posts: 19,747

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    On the return to SJU the immigration line is bypassed and the pilots lead you to the airline crew counter. At customs all the baggage is collected on one cart and again head of the line privileges.
    That was on the Shared Charter? Very nice. Question - I've only cleared immigration in SJU when traelling on AA. Tradewind operates out of a different terminal, where US and DL have their gates. Is it the same Immigration and Customs area as AA uses, or does each terminal have a separate one? I'm wondering about returning to SJU on Tradewind, and then having to get through security into the AA terminal.

  20. #20
    JEK is offline
    Senior Insider Joined: Jan 2004 In the ether . . . Posts: 51,697

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    On the return to SJU the immigration line is bypassed and the pilots lead you to the airline crew counter. At customs all the baggage is collected on one cart and again head of the line privileges.
    That was on the Shared Charter? Very nice. Question - I've only cleared immigration in SJU when traelling on AA. Tradewind operates out of a different terminal, where US and DL have their gates. Is it the same Immigration and Customs area as AA uses, or does each terminal have a separate one? I'm wondering about returning to SJU on Tradewind, and then having to get through security into the AA terminal.
    Shared charter on the return too. I think there is only one immigration hall at SJU.

    When you clear customs, the AA recheck desk is straight ahead. Couldn't be easier.
    The Marius 100th Birthday Party -- June 5, 2023

  21. #21
    Chip is offline
    SBH Member Joined: Oct 2002 Richmond, VA Posts: 281

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008


    For me the the avoidance of the worry and consternation of SXM has a real value which must be considered.

    Yeah, priceless maybe?
    Chip

  22. #22
    onebigdawg53 is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Jun 2004 Beautiful hunterdon county new jersey Posts: 3,157

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008



    [/quote]
    I think there is only one immigration hall at SJU.


    [/quote]

    On one of our returns through SJU from SBH in 1998 we were flying an Air Guadeloupe 18 seater and they let us out on a terminal downstairs at tarmac level that had its own immigration/customs desk. I assumed this facility was also used for smaller private planes. Once through you had to schlep your stuff up a flight of outside stairs to the main gate areas and then go to check-in, security and so on. Is that the terminal used by Tradewinds or do they discharge you at the same terminal as the large commercial flights?

  23. #23
    JEK is offline
    Senior Insider Joined: Jan 2004 In the ether . . . Posts: 51,697

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008


    I think there is only one immigration hall at SJU.


    [/quote]

    On one of our returns through SJU from SBH in 1998 we were flying an Air Guadeloupe 18 seater and they let us out on a terminal downstairs at tarmac level that had its own immigration/customs desk. I assumed this facility was also used for smaller private planes. Once through you had to schlep your stuff up a flight of outside stairs to the main gate areas and then go to check-in, security and so on. Is that the terminal used by Tradewinds or do they discharge you at the same terminal as the large commercial flights?

    [/quote]

    The commercial one. As soon as you exit the customs hall there is a big recheck machine and an AA desk.
    The Marius 100th Birthday Party -- June 5, 2023

  24. #24
    fins85258 is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: May 2005 Scottsdale, AZ Posts: 3,502

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    Thanks Kevin,

    Another year older but not as deep in debt as this time last year.

    Cheri,

    I have been doing research on this problem off & on for a year now. When you live out west the only way I have found to trave down in a day is to do a red eye thru MIA or HOU. Coming back with the time changes it's not all that bad. We did a return of SBH-SXM-SJU-DFW-PHX. Started at 10am in SBH and arived in PHX at about 10pm.
    "Go to Heaven for the Climate or Hell for the Company"

  25. #25
    JEK is offline
    Senior Insider Joined: Jan 2004 In the ether . . . Posts: 51,697

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    Thanks Kevin,

    Another year older but not as deep in debt as this time last year.

    Cheri,

    I have been doing research on this problem off & on for a year now. When you live out west the only way I have found to trave down in a day is to do a red eye thru MIA or HOU. Coming back with the time changes it's not all that bad. We did a return of SBH-SXM-SJU-DFW-PHX. Started at 10am in SBH and arived in PHX at about 10pm.
    My daughter took the red-eye from SFO-EWR-SJU and connected on Tradewinds. A tight connection, but they made it. I would only recommend it for 20-somethings :-)
    The Marius 100th Birthday Party -- June 5, 2023

  26. #26
    fins85258 is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: May 2005 Scottsdale, AZ Posts: 3,502

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008



    My noon quick listen to NPR tells me it's a sad day in Virginia.
    "Go to Heaven for the Climate or Hell for the Company"

  27. #27
    Theresa is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Mar 2004 Posts: 2,027

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    Yes, indeed it's a sad day in VA. What a tragedy.
    On an island in the sun we'll be playing and having fun.

  28. #28
    Myrllyn is offline
    SBH Insider Joined: Nov 2005 Boston Posts: 1,435

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    We had the same per-seat experience in February. As soon as all our luggage was deposited at the TW desk we went to the head of the very long TSA line and into the gate area. On the return to SJU the immigration line is bypassed and the pilots lead you to the airline crew counter. At customs all the baggage is collected on one cart and again head of the line privileges.
    ditto for us in Feb
    Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others. -Groucho

  29. #29
    JEK is offline
    Senior Insider Joined: Jan 2004 In the ether . . . Posts: 51,697

    Re: tradewind aviation 2007-2008

    The "special" price extends into 2008. I just booked my January trip through WIMCO.
    The Marius 100th Birthday Party -- June 5, 2023

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