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Friday 29 September 2023

Leaving South America On Board Delta Airlines Boeing 767-400ER

 Welcome to my Delta Airlines 767-400ER Trip report! 


At this time of blogging, Delta Airlines offered 2 daily flights to GRU (Sao Paulo), I can chose either to fly to London Heathrow via Atlanta or New York JFK. After checking out the options, I initially went for the GRU-JFK-LHR, however the airline rescheduled my flight to just a 1 hour and 35 minutes connection at JFK, I knew I had to change the flight as the tight connection was too risky. After much consideration, I decided to do 2 stops, JFK and BOS before flying to London from the City in Massachusetts. Furthermore I had a long layover over there which means I can meet up with someone and to top it up, I get my first experience on the ERJ-175 from JFK to BOS airport and this will be my next trip report. So without further ado, let's begin this trip report! 

Seat selection

Initially I picked row 33 but since I have covered the 767-400ER trip report with this airline before, I decided to try the bulkhead row on the comfort + class and for this flight, I used my Delta Skymile points to upgrade myself to the comfort + seat on this 9 hours flight. 

Using the mobile app to do the check in was not an issue but I had to collect my boarding passes at the airport as I would need to collect 3 passes for my journey to London. Later on, at the airport, I could only collect my boarding passes to Boston and I had to check in at Boston for my final journey to LHR. 

On the day of departure 

As my flight was departing at night, I booked out at the hotel around check-out time. I could have gone to down to spend the afternoon, however, I didn't feel like going out with my big backpack so I decided to stay at the airport and chill out.  

After arrival at the coach terminal located outside terminal 2, I made my way to terminal 3 via terminal 2. 

One last look at the terminal before I head over. 

These are the flights departing from terminal 3. 

My Brazilian Steak meal and local drink. 

This is the food court which I had my lunch. 

This is the departure hall of terminal 3.

I had to wait for a little while before I could check in.

The check-in experience was slow and it took a while before I reached the counter. However, the check-in staff was nice and after a quick verification of my information, I was on my way.

Passing through the immigration was a nightmare as it took about 45 minutes for me to get past the immigration and security checkpoints. 

This is the airside, the lower floor of the departure gate area. 

This section was quiet as most flights were departing from the gates above this level.

My ride: N832MH 

The boarding passes for my flights from Sao Paulo to New York JFK and from JFK to Boston.

There are lots of shops at the airside. 

The lounges are located near the security area. 

This is how the interior of the departure hall (airside) looks like. 

W Premium Lounge is available for pay-in passengers, premium class passengers and priority pass holders. For the 2nd level lounge, it is  available only for First Class passengers. This lounge is opened for 24 hours and is located near to gate 323 and 324 of this terminal. 

For the rest of us who choose not to use the lounge, there are different restaurants to choose from, seating areas to charge your phone and bars to relax and drink a bit before flying off. Do note that this Airport's WiFi is limited to 4 hours a day. 

Comparing to terminal 2, this terminal is newer and bigger in capacity. 

At that time, it was busy as there were many departures heading to the U.S and Europe. 

This was the boarding gate of my flight.

I did a bit more exploring before the departure time.

Unfortunately, no lounge access for me. 

It's time to depart! Boarding was not in sequence and when it was my turn to face the gate agent, the beep beep sound from the ticket scanning machine went off and I was told to head over to the counter to get my itinerary sorted out. Fortunately, I was cleared to go but the delay didn't matter at all as I saw other travellers waiting at the aerobridge. We waited for another 10 minutes before finally given the clearance to board the aircraft, I wonder what was the cause of the delay.

If I travelled a day earlier, I would have gotten the Skyteam livery 767-400ER (N844MH).

This is the Skyteam livery 767-400ER (Photo: Jason Whitebird)

For this flight, I had to settle for the 767-400ER in standard livery. 

Welcome on board N832MH! 

My ride: N832MH (Photo: Stefan Pompert)

Boeing 767-432ER (Owned)
Delivered in September 2000
Engines: 2 X CF6-80C2B8F
Configuration: C34 W20 Y184
807th Boeing 767 built 
Built in Everett (PAE)
Age: 23+ years old (2023)

Flight route: GRU-JFK 

Miles: 4,741

My seat: 30A (Comfort +) (Photo: Aerolopa.com)

Date of departure: 12th June 2023
Airline: Delta Airlines 
Flight: DL226
Route: GRU-JFK
Aircraft: Boeing 767-400ER
Registration: N832MH
Seat: 30A (Comfort +)
Departure terminal: 3 
Gate: 303 
Load: 30% in Comfort + 
Departure time: 2115
Boarding: 2025
Pushed back: 2107
Take off: 2126
Actual flight time: 9 hours 16 mins 
Flight time: 9 hours 20 mins
Schedule arrival: 0605
Actual arrival: 0542 
Departure runway: 10L
Arrival runway: 31L 
Arrival gate: B26

Welcome on board Delta's Boeing 767-400ER! 

Delta One (1-2-1 seating configuration - 34 seats)

These seats are fully lie-flat bed and have a seat pitch of 77 inches and 20 inches seat width.

Premium Select (2-2-2 seating configuration - 20 seats)

This is the airline's premium economy class. These seats have a seat pitch of 38 inches, 19.5 inch seat width and can recline up to 7 degress.

Row 22 seats at the window side are windowless. 

Unless your seat at row 22 is reclined, you won't be able to get much view. 

My in-flight experience 

Once the door was closed, I was glad to see the aisle seat beside mine remained vacant. There were a few vacant seats in this class. As everyone boarded on time, we pushed back ahead of schedule time and took off about 20 minutes later. For this 9 hours flight, I appreciate the extra legroom space and privacy. I tried figuring out how to release the IFE screen from the storage area but silly me, I couldn't figure out until I asked the crew. As this was the first time sitting quite front in the Boeing 767-400ER, I find it to be quite noisy during take off and there was quite a bit of turbulence during the flight. 

There were 2 meal service on this flight, dinner and breakfast. I find them to be quite ok in terms of quality, but I certainly tasted better ones, that's for sure. I manage to catch a couple of hours of sleep but I wasn't feeling comfortable with the seat after 5 hours or so into the flight, I had to walk around a bit to stretch my legs. The service on board was average but overall it was a normal flight, nothing to shout about. 

We landed early and had to wait for a while before we reached our gate as our gate was not ready and with that, I had a few hours to spare at JFK Airport before my next flight to Boston. 

For this trip report, I focus on the Economy Comfort +, as my Main Cabin experience on this aircraft has been covered,  you can find the trip report over here.

Economy Comfort + (2-3-2 seating configuration - 28 seats)

These seats have a seat pitch of 34 inches, seat width of 18.1 inches and can recline up to 5 degrees. 

Is it worth paying more for these seats? Yes especially on longer flight sectors such as my flight's duration (9 hours), the seat pitch does matter and with the padding on each seat, it is actually quite comfortable. However, I would not chose the bulkhead row. 

Main cabin (2-3-2 seating configuration - 156 seats)

As for the standard main cabin, the seats have a seat pitch of around 31 to 32 inches, 18.1 inches for the seat width and can recline up to 3 degrees. 

More information of the Economy Comfort + Seats 

This is my bulkhead row seat. The In-Flight Entertainment individual screen in this row is stored at the armrest area and can only be used after take off and landing. 

While there is more legroom space, for a tall person like myself, I was not able to stretch out my legs fully . So overall, I prefer to sit behind the bulkhead row seats. The extra space below the seat in front of you does matter. 

I do appreciate the extra padding and the slightly thicker head rest. 

I could either watch the view outside or check out the flight progress on the front screen during take off and landing. 

The recline button and the flight attendent call and light switches are located over here. 

AC power socket is available. 

The foldable tray is located at the left side arm support area. 

The advantage of sitting here is I have 2 windows for myself. 

Do you see a small circular ring? Click on it to get the IFE screen out. 

The wall divider between the Premium Economy and Economy Comfort +. 

Lavatory check 

What's provided for each passenger? 

Safety Card 

A set of pillow and blanket 

Travel Kit and a pair of ear plugs.

Was I satisfied with the seat? Well, it wasn't too bad. 

I was waiting for the meal while enjoying a movie. 

For Economy Class main cabin, you can check out my trip report, over here.

In-Flight meal 

A bottle of water was given by the crew. 

For dinner, we were given a choice between the chicken or pasta. I chose the chicken option. 

I chose gingle ale to wash down the meal. It was not too bad.

This was breakfast. Egg sandwich with fruits and was given a choice of beverage, I chose apple juice. 

The sandwich was not bad. 

In-Flight Entertainment 

WiFi was available on this flight. 

This complimentary messaging service is quite useful especially when you want to chat with your friends or relatives on the commonly used Whatsapp or other platform. 

I find the IFE system on Delta Airlines to be adequate, certainly not the best system out there. Do note there is no outside viewcam installed on this aircraft. 

There is an usb charging port at the IFE system and this means you can only charge your devices after take off and before landing. 

Window shot photos (From Take-Off to Landing)

It took a while to reach the runway. 

Off we go, goodbye Brazil and South America! I can't wait to return in the near future. 

V1 Rotate! 

Off we go, I enjoyed some view of Sao Paulo before settling in. 

Many hours later, we started our descent into New York. 

At this point, the flight was smooth thanks to the good weather. 

At this point, we were on final approach to runway 31L. 

We landed smoothly on runway 31L. 

Reverse thrusts were deployed to slow our aircraft down. 

Welcome back to the U.S! 

Traffic was getting heavy as there were a numerous number of aircraft getting ready for departure.

We stopped here for a short while as our gate was not ready.

We parked beside 2 Airbus aircraft, the Airbus A330NEO and Airbus A321CEO. 

With that, my flight has ended. Time certainly flies when you are having fun! 

My flight summary 

Arrival at JFK Airport 

Fortunately the immigration officer was nice and after answering his questions, I received the chop of approval. :) 

After arrival, there was one place I wanted to go to. First, I need to the skytrain over to terminal 5. 

After a few minutes of walking, I reached my destination. 

This is the TWA hotel of JFK Airport, located beside Terminal 5. I wanted to see how the place is after my last visit. I was shocked to see a signboard warning others of transpassing this place as it is a private property, no wonder the hotel was empty when I was there. Since I was there for a short while, I just went ahead to take a look. 

The nice classic music and the beautiful interior makes me want to come back everytime I visit this airport. 

I do hope to stay a night here one day but only if the price is right. Anyway, I have done a short review of this airport hotel, you can check out more information over here.

After the short tour of the hotel, I made my way back to the skytrain station and went over to terminal 4. With that, stay tuned for my next trip report for my flight with Delta Connection operated by Republic Airways to Boston. 

My rating 

Airline's website/mobile app: 4/5 
Airport Experience at GRU airport: 3/5
In-Flight Service: 3/5
In-Flight Experience: 3/5
Cleanliness of the cabin: 4/5
In-Flight Entertainment System: 3/5
In-Flight Meals: 4/5
Punctuality: 5/5 
Seat comfort: 4/5
Cabin interior: 3.5/5
Overall rating: 36.5/50
Percentage: 73%


Comparing the airline's A330-300 to the 767-400ER, which aircraft do I prefer? I have always been a fan of the A330. However, for the cabin noise during takeoff and cruising, I find the Pratt and Whitney engines on the A330 to be very noisy (Delta Airlines uses this engine type for the A330CEO fleet) but the Roll Royce and GE powered A330 are quieter. In addition, the A330 cabin interior is dated and the overhead compartment is small and that could pose a problem if the flight is full and many passengers have carry-on luggages. So my vote goes to the 767-400ER, for the more comfortable  2-3-2 layout, the nicer Boeing 777 style interior and the bigger overhead bin comparment. 

While the in-flight service was not fantastic, at least the in-flight meal on this flight was nice, both catering from ATL and GRU airports served decent food on both of my flights. I was fortunate to have the aisle seat vacant but if I was given a choice to seat at the bulkhead row or the seats behind, I would prefer the standard seats as I like to look at the monitor screen in front of me and also able to place my small carry-on underneath the seat in front. As for the in-flight service, you can't compare it to the top airlines, they disappeared from most parts of the flights and when they served me, the crew serving my row wasn't very friendly. This depends on one's luck on the type of crew or service you get. Overall, the flight was not too bad and I was glad to experience Delta's long haul flight on the South American routes. This turned out to be my last long haul flight with Delta for this trip as my flight from BOS to LHR was changed at a last minute to Virgin Atlantic's flight on the A330NEO because of the lengthy flight delay as the sole 767 at the airport went tech (broke down). More information on this in my BOS-LHR trip report, coming soon. 

Hope you enjoyed this trip report! 

For my previous trip report (BOA VVI-GRU 737-800), click here

For my Delta Airlines A330 trip report (ATL-GRU), click here

Next trip report: Flying the ERJ-175 from JFK to BOS, click here 



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