Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, California is a handy little United Express station. Less 20 minutes from my house, it is always my airport of choice when I travel to and from Southern California. When mainline pulled out over a year ago, the SkyWest staff that took over was uninformed and unprofessional. But the staff has improved dramatically over the last year and I now know many of them on a personal basis.
Burbank is also great because the security lines in Terminal B are rarely busy (only in the early morning when the AA MD-80 bound for DFW, AS 737 bound for SEA, and UA’s CRJs for SFO and DEN leave around the same time) and there are no full body scanners (yet).
Usually, I’ll arrive 35 minutes before my flight, which gives me plenty of time to print my boarding passes, clear security, and use the restroom before boarding starts. Yesterday, I decided to cut it a little closer. I was having lunch with friends and deliberately pressed my luck.
I didn’t arrive at the airport until 1:10p for my 1:26p flight. I had checked in online, but didn’t print out my boarding pass at home so I had to stop by the check-in desk first. Thankfully, my friend Joe was at the counter and quickly printed out my BPs. The security line was empty, but I heard my name being paged as I was pulling my laptop out of my carry-on bag. It was 1:14p now, two minutes before the ten-minute cutoff, so after walking through the metal detector I ran over to the gate agent in my socks (about 100 yards away) and told him not to close the flight without me.
I ran back to the checkpoint, gathered my belongings, put my shoes back on, then walked back over to the gate where the agent scanned me in, closed the flight, and walked with me out to the plane to hand the FA the final manifest.
I made the flight, but I’d say that was cutting it a bit too close.