The Best-Laid Plans: United Economy Guam to Honolulu

Since my upgrade did not clear for the island hopper, I was not looking forward to flying in coach for 24 hours on a 737.  After a few calls to United (namely, to convince the agents that, yes, despite their location in North America, I was within 24 hours of the departure time of my flights), I moved to the nonstop, UA200.

Notably, my connection in Guam was the first time I’ve looked forward to encountering TSA.  When I fly in the United States, the worst hassles I suffer are the lines and the opt-out pat down.  In contrast, the security situation at Manila is a bit more involved.  To enter the airport building, passengers had to have their bags X-rayed and pass through a metal detector.  (I can live with that; I had to in Istanbul.)  After picking up my boarding pass, paying the Terminal Fee, and passing through passport control, we had another security checkpoint, this one in a normal-looking, walk-through metal detector setup.  Upon reaching the gate, my carry-on bags were opened and the contents throughly inspected (including the individual, blank sheets of paper in a folio I travel with), I was patted down, and then two guys needed to spend a minute looking at my shoes.  To be clear, this wasn’t because I was randomly selected for enhanced screening:  Everyone at the gate had to pass through this rigmarole.

United 200
Guam (GUM) – Honolulu (HNL)
Monday, May 28th
Depart:  6:35AM
Arrive: 5:56PM
Duration:  7 hours, 21 minutes
Aircraft: Boeing 777-222
Seat: 17G (Economy Class)

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