During a recent trip to San Francisco, I flew Virgin America from LAX to SFO. I didn’t even know this airline existed. Even finding the web site was tricky. Don’t look for it under Virgin Airlines or Virgin Atlantic. It has its own separate site: www.virginamerica.com
In San Francisco International Airport, it has its own half of the new international terminal. Very spacious, uncrowded and quiet. Don’t forget to tell anyone picking you up at the airport to follow signs to “International flights.” My college buddy who was meeting me there figured it out on his second try around the airport.
That was the only trouble I had. The airline flight attendants were pleasant, the plane (with “mood lighting” ) was roomy. And the airline’s “Red” video screens offer satellite TV channels for free (the movies will cost you, however). I enjoyed watching ESPN’s “Sports Center” and “Baseball Tonight.”
I’ve flown to the Bay Area — both to SFO and Oakland. I prefer SFO. With terminal renovations complete, and with the on-site BART station, SFO is the better airport to take to the Bay Area. If you go to Oakland, you must board the “BART Bus” to the BART station next to the old Oakland Coliseum (McCaffee Coliseum). I never felt comfortable making that trip in the night time. In the day it’s fine, but it costs you ($3) to ride the BART bus and there’s no one to help you schlep your luggage on and off the bus.
A flight from LAX to SFO and back for two weeks from today cost $138 round trip (for early morning departure). Not bad at all. Especially in today’s market. Especially since other discount airlines (like ExpressJet from Ontario) are going out of business.