03/15/2009 09:31 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Virgin America: A Flight Review Written InFlight [Updated]

One of my billboards of all time, and I speak as a recovering copywriter, was one of the first ones for Virgin Airlines - written years ago.

Virgin. More Experience Than The Name Suggests.

I fly Virgin Atlantic back and forth to London religiously. I can't stand British Airways, and I was looking forward to trying Virgin America. Despite the fact that this airline for legal reasons is American-owned, Sir Richard Branson and the Virgin mantra of life is meant to be ingrained in it. First thought on this, China owns $1 trillion worth of our debt, perhaps it's okay for a foreign entity to own an American airline. Second is that I gather Alaska Airlines is whining about whether VA is legal. I would like to offer Alaska Airlines a large free cup of STFU and worry about being a better airline, in which case, who cares who owns your competitor.

But I digress.

Right now, I am sitting in seat 3F, using the wireless on the plane. I fully expect to be famous for being the first HuffPost blogger to write a business post while flying. I am already known around the HuffPost offices for being the first to have to write an apology to Yoko Ono, so I am hoping this balances that little episode out. Sorry about that again Colin.

A few likes about VirginAmerica. New airplanes. Now, this is just like JetBlue or any smart new airline, you take off on VirginAmerica, you zip right up into the sky, no laboring, hit the runway and go. I like that.

The inflight system, RED, is quite good. It's a little simpler to understand than Virgin Atlantic's, it's actually touch screen driven, which I only know because my seatmate in 3E showed me. I wonder how that will age, four weeks in, working fine, but if you have tech problems on those things as they age, not so fun. A friend of mine got on a JetBlue flight from Los Angeles to Boston with her daughter only to discover the tv's weren't working, and that's no fun.

I haven't had any food yet, but will. I paid $100 to upgrade to MainCabin Select so I get free food the whole way to San Francisco, I'm a little hungry so they may lose on that deal. I can do some eating.

I am going to post this and then update it all the way. I do like the mood lighting on the plane. The people working here are great and so far so good.

Well, unless you work for another airline. I have flown 500,000 miles on American but have not flown them in probably four years. I am strictly a Southwest, JetBlue and now Virgin America kind of flyer. Southwest and JetBlue look solid financially, and VirginAmerica is to be determined, but if all else is equal, I promise, this is a great way to fly.

I had a chance to meet Richard Branson recently. I am very jealous of his life living and working on his island. He was telling me he is slowly always stretching it out another week at a time. I think this new venture just might give him a few more shekels for a few more weeks out there in the British Virgin Islands.

Funny, I think I just figured out where he got the name from.


Ordered food. The granola and berries are okay. I had to ask for a spoon, and if you paid $7 for this, you'd be bitching all the way across the country, but it was free with my seat so I'm giving it a B. They just brought me extra free granola, so perhaps they know that literally two ounces of granola for that price won't fly.

I do like the way you can pick a ton of songs and create your own playlist. I've got 30 U2 songs going. Sorry Max.


Ordered a sandwich, literally came in two minutes to seat, and let me tell you the Turkey Feta Wrap, bingo, great. I have almonds for later too.


My playlist is still going, love that feature. I got real time scores from Duke game, that's the soon to be ACC Champ Blue Devils for your Carolina people. All in all, I'd short other airline stocks.