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Topic: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-26 05:41:07 and read 10808 times.




Map generated by the Great Circle Mapper - copyright © Karl L. Swartz



Intro
Originally planned to be opened in 2010, Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER) has encountered a shameful series of delays due to poor construction planning, management and execution. So far, four official opening dates could not be met. One of them was Sunday, June 3rd 2012 - and things looked promising for a long time. Some A.netters suggested to meet there in order to experience the grand opening of BER and the closure of Tegel and Schönefeld Airports. Within the following weeks and months, dozens of members decided to take part in the meeting, including me. Most people would arrive on Saturday and leave again on Sunday. I decided to join the party on Sunday, though.

Of course I didn't want to take a nonstop flight to Berlin from MUC or NUE, but tried to create an itinerary including new airlines. After searching for a while, I booked a Munich-Berlin and Berlin-Milan combo on Air Berlin, with a "transit time" of almost 7 hours - plenty of time to join the meeting. Then I added a Milan-Catania flight on the meanwhile vanished Italian low-cost carrier Wind Jet and a Catania-Munich flight on Air Malta, both departing on the next day. Both were new airlines for me and both were in trouble - so I kept hoping for the best all the time.

Several weeks after booking, the BER opening was postponed and my Air Berlin flights would now arrive at and depart from Tegel. Well, I didn't mind so much. I was still looking forward to the meeting and the journey.




Sunday, 3 June 2012
Munich (MUC) - Berlin (TXL)
Air Berlin AB6188, operated by TUIfly
Scheduled times: 10:35-11:45
Actual times: 10:33-11:44
Flight duration: 00:52 (hrs)
Distance: 298 miles
Economy Class (single class), seat 22A

Boeing 737-7K5
D-AXHA (s/n 2202),
Delivered in 03/2007


1st flight on D-AXHA
9th 737-700 flight
38th 737NG flight
66th 737 flight



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Photo © Hans Schulze
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Photo © Marco Zeininger



Former appearance:


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Photo © Paul Spijkers
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Photo © Spotnap



I had already checked in online on the day before, so I could walk straight to the gate after arriving at the airport. Module A of Terminal 1 wasn't overly busy on that Sunday morning. My plane from Berlin-Tegel arrived on time:



It turned out to be D-AHXA, operated by TUIfly:



Boarding commenced on time, friendly flight attendants welcomed me at the door. As usual, newspapers and various magazines were available free of charge.

The plane was equipped with AB's latest seats which aren't bad at all...



...but they are lacking a classic seat pocket. This is what you get instead - not suited for storing camera or binoculars:



Legroom was acceptable for this short flight:


The middle seat remained empty, so I could stretch out. Unfortunately, the captain informed us about ATC delays and announced that we wouldn't be able to take off earlier than 25 minutes from now. "But we are in negotiations for an earlier departure time!", he promised.

Interestingly, we were pushed back two minutes ahead of schedule, much earlier than expected. But we still had to wait for a while on various taxiway positions. Meanwhile it had started raining:



D-AHXA finally took off 7 minutes earlier than originally announced by the captain. What a nasty weather:





Leaving Bavaria for the Czech Republic - my hometown is not too far from this position:



White 737-400 instead of an Air Berlin 737-700:



Inflight magazine and shopping guide:



Mistakes anywhere? Everything looked okay:



I had picked up a "Focus" news magazine during boarding - but I'm not a big fan of it, to be honest:



Gourmet meals designed by the Sansibar restaurant are offered on all routes with a flight time between 60 minutes and 6 hours:



Some more common stuff:



Non-alcoholic drinks and snacks are available free of charge on all short-haul and medium-haul routes. On domestic routes, even beer and wine are served free of charge. I guess that's because the percentage of overly thirsty holiday makers is rather limited on domestic flights...  Wink I ordered orange juice and a salty snack - and I found it a bit disappointing that potato chips were handed out instead of pastries on such a late morning flight:



This is the former Brand-Briesen Airfield, a redeveloped military air base located about 60 km south-southeast of Berlin:


The former airship hangar once used by the liquidated logistics company CargoLifter AG has been converted into a leisure resort.

Approach over countless lakes and ponds...



...and countless houses:







Rather unattractive housing blocks:





This is a small museum run a club called "Alliierte in Berlin" (= Allies in Berlin):



We touched down after a flying time of 52 minutes and I spotted a very interesting visitor in the distance...



...a Wind Jet A319, registered EI-ECY - I'd get a different one on the next day, though:


"Actually we should have landed at the new airport today, but now we are still using good old Tegel Airport!", the captain said after landing.

A.netters anywhere?



Unfortunately, we taxied to a remote position belonging to the infamous provisional Terminal C:



The obligatory cabin shot:



Well, arriving at a remote position at least gave me the chance to take some apron pictures:



[Edited 2013-01-26 05:55:18]

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-26 05:42:31 and read 10877 times.

The A.net Meeting
After stepping into the terminal building, I called volvair to find out more about the A.netter crowd's current position. volvair told me to come to the "Ess-Bahn", a famous "Currywurst" stand near the main terminal entrance (featured in other reports about the meeting). On the way through the terminal, I ran into SloAir who was also looking for the others. Some minutes later, we discovered the crowd and it was great to see familiar faces again and to meet others for the first time in person.  thumbsup 

The whole group then went to the observation deck where it was quite cold and windy. Willy Brandt welcomes the world? Not yet...and nobody knows when.  Embarrassment



Several A.netters can be seen in this picture:



The other side:



Luxair747SP on the way back to Frankfurt:



JU-1011, one of MIAT's two 767-300ERs, was the highlight of the afternoon:


Several users had to leave during our spotting session and the rest of us finally went to a terminal restaurant after it had started raining. We spent hours talking about aviation and other things, it was a truly enjoyable meeting. I was among the last participants to leave Berlin on that day.

Numerous members have posted nice reports about the meeting and their flights:

To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question (by signol Jun 4 2012 in Trip Reports)
To BERlin? No, To TXL...: BRU-TXL-AMS-TXL-BRU (by Sultanils Jun 4 2012 in Trip Reports)
Berlin And The "Reopening" Of TXL On LH And AB (by Luxair747SP Jun 4 2012 in Trip Reports)
Mates And Muffins! HEL-TXL/SXF-BRU-TLL-HEL (by 717Flyer Jun 6 2012 in Trip Reports)
Flying KLM & AF To Meet In BERlin: AMS-TXL-CDG-AMS (by airbuseric Jun 7 2012 in Trip Reports)
Up North From The BER Meet: FKB-TXL-ARN/BMA-UME (by CaptainRed Jun 16 2012 in Trip Reports)
An Airbus An A Boeing To And From Berlin (LH/HV) (by roberts87 Jun 24 2012 in Trip Reports)
Air Dolomiti And Lufthansa, Trieste To Berlin (by SloAir Jul 7 2012 in Trip Reports)
Tegel A.Net Meet. SN LHR-BRU-TXL, LH TXL-BHX (by gabrielchew Jul 11 2012 in Trip Reports)
BER, The Grand Opening, In Theory!. (by FLIEGER67 Aug 4 2012 in Trip Reports)




Sunday, 3 June 2012
Berlin (TXL) - Milan (MXP)
Air Berlin AB8432, operated by Germania
Scheduled times: 18:35-20:15
Actual times: 18:32-20:16
Flight duration: 01:33 (hrs)
Distance: 521 miles
Economy Class (single class), seat 24A

Boeing 737-75B
D-AGEN (s/n 016),
Delivered in 03/1998


1st flight on D-AGEN
10th 737-700 flight
39th 737NG flight
67th 737 flight



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Photo © Alastair T. Gardiner - WorldAirImages



I had checked in for both Air Berlin flights on the day before, so once again I could go straight to the gate at the infamous Terminal C. That building was really crowded, but my flight was on time, so I didn't have to hang around there very long. The weather had become worse and, unfortunately, we had to walk to the aircraft. Even though the distance was short, everybody got wet in heavy rain. Of course, I couldn't take a picture of the plane this time.  thumbsdown 

D-AGEN, a relatively old bird operated by Germania, was equipped with worn old-style seats:



Legroom was slightly more generous than on the TUIfly-operated 737-700:



This time the whole row remained empty which I was very glad about. Taking decent pictures during taxi and takeoff was impossible due to continuous rain:



We left the parking position ahead of schedule and took off without any additional waiting time. During climb, the captain made an announcement which was hard to understand. He mentioned "thunderstorm" and "hail" and I guess he referred to the situation at Malpensa - I was wondering whether this would have an effect on our arrival.

What a contrast to the bad weather on the ground:



No doubt about the operator:



For the second time on that day, I had a look into Air Berlin's inflight magazine. In this editorial, the company's former CEO Hartmut Mehdorn criticized the German air passenger duty - rightfully so!



Interesting article about Oneworld partner Royal Jordanian:



The legendary "AirBär" going to Australia on Air Berlin's biggest single shareholder Etihad Airways:



Details about the carrier's service concept:



Trail mix and (tasty) cream cheese sandwiches were offered by the friendly flight attendants and I opted for the latter. Additionally, I ordered orange juice and - after being offered a warm drink as well - a cup of tea:



There were numerous empty seats on this evening flight to Milan:



It was quite cloudy and hazy around Malpensa, but approach and landing were smooth:



This is A320 EI-EUA, operated by the "new" Livingston:


By the way - EI-EUA plane used to fly for Spanair as EC-IYG and as such once carried fellow user FLIEGER67.

We finally came to a stop next to Air Berlin 737-700 D-ABLE:



After leaving the aircraft, I called the First Hotel Malpensa and ordered the shuttle. It's a nice and decently priced hotel with friendly staff:



Comfortable room:



While waiting for the shuttle on the next morning, I could watch some departing planes. Tyrolean Fokker 100:



Air One A320:



[Edited 2013-01-26 06:02:24]

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-26 05:44:30 and read 10866 times.


Monday, 4 June 2012
Milan (MXP) - Catania (CTA)
Wind Jet IV573
Scheduled times: 09:40-11:30
Actual times: 09:49-11:33
Flight duration: 01:31 (hrs)
Distance: 652 miles
Economy Class (single class), seat 24F

Airbus A319-132
EI-ESG (MSN 2797),
First delivered to Spirit Airlines in 06/2006 as N521NK


1st flight on EI-ESG
23rd A319 flight
83rd A32X flight
137th airline



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Photo © Roberto Bianchi Piti Spotter Club



Former appearances (meanwhile back in Spirit Airlines colors):


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Photo © Paul Spijkers



While the booking process on Wind Jet's basic website had been easy and convenient, I hadn't been able to select a seat. So I tried to be at the airport as soon as possible. It turned out to be a good idea because I didn't have to queue up and a friendly female agent quickly issued my boarding pass. She gladly accepted my request for a window seat in the last row and - after I had asked her about it - she ensured that the flight would operate on time.

Now there was plenty of time left for spotting. There are large windows in the terminal hall, so I could easily log numerous registrations. Cathay Pacific and the big Arabian trio:



Air Italy, Alba Star, Blue Panorama, Livingston, Meridiana fly and Neos - nice mix of smaller airlines:



Interesting visitors at the cargo ramp:



D-AGEN was here again after another flight from Berlin-Tegel:



I kept watching out for the plane with orange nose, engines and tail and was certainly relieved when it arrived from Catania almost on time:



EI-ESG used to be operated by Spirit Airlines and Mandala Airlines before it joined the Wind Jet fleet…


…and meanwhile it has returned to the Spirit Airlines as N521NK.

One may argue that the orange nose looked ugly, but all these "Wind Jets" certainly sticked out:



People already started queuing up before the plane had reached its final parking position. Half an hour later, shortly before boarding commenced, I was among the last few passengers to join the queue. The gate agents announced that boarding would be done by row numbers, but that wasn't enforced. Once I reached the aircraft door, I was surprised to see one of the pilots standing next to a flight attendant - and both of them gave me a friendly welcome.

When I arrived at the last row, I couldn't find an empty space for my trolley - the flight was packed. After searching for a while, I placed it in a bin at row 13. Then I noticed that a couple in the 40s was occupying the window seat and the aisle seat and I had to tell them that 24F was mine. At least they moved without further discussion.

Of course I was unpleasantly surprised by the location of the window, but it was still acceptable:



Thanks for telling me about a special Avis rates - but where's the safety card?



However, the seat was okay and legroom was more generous than expected:



Parked next to us was EC-KDH of Vueling, one of my least favorite airlines:



We left the gate slightly late and passed Blue Panorama 757-200 EI-DNA which is meanwhile stored at Victorville:



China Cargo 777F again...



...and a 744F from South Korea:



We flew a wide right turn after a powerful takeoff - what a beautiful scenery:





Decent, but worn inflight magazine:



Fleet and network information:



Now that's interesting...


Wind Jet referred to "7 new A320s", but as far as I know it only had 6 frames in service in summer 2012, with an average age of some 18 years...

Buy on board menu:










Since I had breakfast at Malpensa and was planning to enjoy a fresh pizza at Catania Airport, I didn't order anything.

I couldn't spot an empty seat on this flight:



Wide right turn onto final approach:





Catania and the famous Mount Etna:





We touched down after a flying time of 1 hour and 33 minutes and taxied to a remote parking position. Parked next to us was EI-DFO, an A320 veteran which used to fly for Onur Air, Lotus Air, Skyservice and Air Arabia and is now stored at Malta:



Of course I took the chance to take some close-up pictures of EI-ESG:





This is CTA's check-in hall:



Curbside:



Mount Etna again:




I could have visited the city, but wasn't really in the mood to do so - I had to be back at least 2.5 hours before departure anyway in order to secure a good seat. Since Sicily is a popular holiday destination, I was expecting numerous German tourists to queue up long before the opening of the check-in counters. Unfortunately, checking in online hadn't been possible for this Catania-Munich flight. Landside spotting is not possible at CTA, so I kept reading to kill the time.




Monday, 4 June 2012
Catania (CTA) - Munich (MUC)
Air Malta KM1308
Scheduled times: 17:00-19:10
Actual times: 16:44-19:13
Flight duration: 02:12 (hrs)
Distance: 770 miles
Economy Class, seat 23F

Airbus A319-111
9H-AEM (MSN 2382), named "Birgu"
Delivered in 02/2005


1st flight on 9H-AEM
24th A319 flight
84th A32X flight
138th airline



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Photo © Gareth harvey
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Photo © Luigi Maccio - SpotIT



Current appearance:


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Photo © Christian Schürmann
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Photo © Terry Wade



Just as expected, the first tourists showed up at the Air Malta check-in counters more than 2.5 hours before departure. The number kept growing quickly, so I had no other choice than to line up as well.  Yeah sure
Finally, after I had been standing around for almost 30 minutes, two agents started working behind their counters. Fortunately, I could secure 23F (last row).

It wasn't very busy at the airport in the afternoon, but a waiting in the gate area was better than being stuck in the landside part of the terminal. 9H-AEM arrived on time after a 20 minute hop from Malta:



9H-AEM is the newest frame in the five-strong A319 fleet:



Interestingly, two thirds of the cabin were already occupied by passengers originating from Malta. The seats were comfortable...



...and legroom was sufficient:



The route on the foldout screens:



Alitalia A321 and Meridiana fly A320 in Eurofly colors:


Even though the flight was packed, the middle seat in my row remained empty.  thumbsup  The captain welcomed "...all new passengers who have joined us" and announced a flying time of two hours as well as turbulence towards the end of the flight.

We left the gate 16 minutes ahead of schedule after a turn-around time of just 20 minutes or so - well done! Easyjet A319 and Wind Jet A320 EI-ELG which once carried user BrusselsSouth:



Pan Air BAe 146-200QT EC-GQO, once flying for Malmö Aviation and Eurowings:



Bluebird Cargo 737-300F which used to fly for Hispania Linéas Aéreas, Avensa, Western Pacific and Sterling Airlines:



Beautiful coastline views after a powerful takeoff:







Goodbye, Sicily!



The city of Milazzo:



This is Stromboli, an island containing Mount Stromboli, one of three active volcanoes in Italy:







Inflight magazine and safety card:



Routes and destinations:



Air Malta used to serve more destinations nonstop from Catania, but only Malta and Munich are left:



Faultless fleet information section:



Bar prices:



A cold meal was served which didn't overly impress me:


While the slice of mozzarella cheese and the slice of tomato were fine, I didn't like the cold cuts and the soggy aubergine pieces. There was simply too much olive oil! The bun and the cake weren't culinary delights either. And btw - the lady in the aisle seat had two slices of mozzarella on her tray.  thumbsdown 

Then I ordered a Maltese beer and tried to hand over 3 Euros (as suggested in the inflight magazine), but the friendly flight attendant denied and said: "It's free of charge!"  thumbsup  It was quite tasty:



During the second drink run, I ordered a can of ginger ale:



The obligatory cabin shot:



Exactly as announced by the captain, it became very bumpy during approach which made several passengers rather nervous. It seemed we had to fly around a thunderstorm which had just passed the airport and there were numerous thick and low clouds:









It was very wet down there:




We finally touched down after a flying time of 2 hours and 12 minutes and numerous passengers started clapping.  Yeah sure

The plane finally came to a stop next to Lufthansa A340-600 D-AIHY was being prepared for its next long-haul mission:



[Edited 2013-01-26 06:13:10]

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-26 05:45:15 and read 10857 times.

Conclusion
I'm glad that I was able to try Wind Jet two months before its demise. While it didn't offer a remarkable product, it offered low fares on numerous routes to/from Catania, Palermo and Rimini. In terms of competition, it's bad in most cases when an airline stops operating. Flying Air Malta was a pleasure, I was just disappointed by the meal. Air Berlin still offers a decent product on domestic and European routes and I hope that there won't be significant service cuts during the latest cost reduction process.


Best Regards,
PlaneHunter



P.S.: Just in case you missed them - my previous trip reports:
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The 524-Seat Twin-jet: HND-ITM On ANA 777-300 (by PlaneHunter Jan 21 2008 in Trip Reports)
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Rocketing To Tokyo: FUK-HND On JAL (ex-JAS) 777 (by PlaneHunter Dec 15 2007 in Trip Reports)
Oddities & Okinawa: JTA 734 & JAL 744D(Domestic) (by PlaneHunter Dec 3 2007 in Trip Reports)
MUC To Nagoya: Finnair E170 & (Old) "New" A340 (by PlaneHunter Nov 15 2007 in Trip Reports)
Mad Dog, A320 Tech Delay & Best Of Lanzarote (pix) (by PlaneHunter Oct 14 2007 in Trip Reports)
Canaries Prop-Hopping: Islas Airways & Naysa (pix) (by PlaneHunter Aug 26 2007 in Trip Reports)
Canaries And Confusion: LH CRJ900 & Spanair A321 (by PlaneHunter Jul 24 2007 in Trip Reports)
Hubbing For 162 Miles: HOQ-FRA-STR Ret On IQ/EW/LH (by PlaneHunter Jun 28 2007 in Trip Reports)
BOS-JFK-AMS-MUC: SSSS-Check And KLM 777 (+pics) (by PlaneHunter Jun 16 2007 in Trip Reports)
ATL-PIT-JFK-BOS: FL B717, JetBlue E190 And Delays (by PlaneHunter May 30 2007 in Trip Reports)
MUC-AMS-MEM-ATL On NWA A332 And 40-year-old DC-9 (by PlaneHunter May 21 2007 in Trip Reports)
FRA-BKK-FRA Via CMB: SriLankan A332 & A343 (+pics) (by PlaneHunter Dec 28 2006 in Trip Reports)
BNE-SIN-DXB-MUC On Emirates B772ER & B773 (+pix) (by PlaneHunter Nov 29 2006 in Trip Reports)
2 Hours In Paradise: Hamilton Island (JQ/DJ) +Pics (by PlaneHunter Oct 18 2006 in Trip Reports)
BNE-SYD-BNE: Domestic Run On QF’s Oldest B747-400 (by PlaneHunter Oct 5 2006 in Trip Reports)
Testing Qantas: SYD-MEL-SYD-BNE (B738, B763, A332) (by PlaneHunter Oct 4 2006 in Trip Reports)
Going Down Under: MUC-DXB-SYD On EK A332 & A345 (by PlaneHunter Sep 29 2006 in Trip Reports)
Surprised By NIKI's Newest A320 & Screw-up By AB (by PlaneHunter Jul 15 2006 in Trip Reports)
Leisure Vs. Full Service: Condor & SN Brussels (by PlaneHunter Jun 4 2006 in Trip Reports)
"betterFly" On LH: Business Class For 99 Euro +pix (by PlaneHunter May 6 2006 in Trip Reports)
Weekend Transatlantic Trip (2): US A321 & B762 +Pix (by PlaneHunter Mar 26 2006 in Trip Reports)
Transatlantic For A Weekend (1): MUC-DCA On US +Pix (by PlaneHunter Mar 13 2006 in Trip Reports)

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: CaptainRed
Posted 2013-01-26 07:42:06 and read 10585 times.

Hi PH,

thanks for this most enjoyable reminder of the fabulous Berlin meet last year. It was indeed a pleasure to meet you again there. A good idea to include some more interesting flights after the meet. Interesting to read something about Windjet, they seemed to offer quite an ok service for an LCC. A shame that they are no longer. I had booked a flight with them as well last year to Catania, but unfortunately had to cancel this trip because of other commitments. Well, that's life.

And finally a nice flight with Air Malta, I think the meal actually looked quite good. But of course a no-go that your neighbor got two slices of Mozarella and you only one ... Well, at least you got a free beer as a compensation  ...

CaptainRed

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-26 08:04:31 and read 10511 times.

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 4):
thanks for this most enjoyable reminder of the fabulous Berlin meet last year.

Servus CaptainRed, many thanks for your fast reply!

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 4):
It was indeed a pleasure to meet you again there.

Same here!

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 4):
Interesting to read something about Windjet, they seemed to offer quite an ok service for an LCC. A shame that they are no longer.

  

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 4):
I had booked a flight with them as well last year to Catania, but unfortunately had to cancel this trip because of other commitments.

That's too bad, but what can you do?

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 4):
But of course a no-go that your neighbor got two slices of Mozarella and you only one ...

Absolutely, that was truly annoying!  

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 4):
Well, at least you got a free beer as a compensation

True, that was nice.


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: EL-AL
Posted 2013-01-26 10:12:28 and read 10348 times.

Hey PH,

Thank you for another great report. You got on windjet almost at the last minute.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Rather unattractive housing blocks:

In what used to be the DDR part of Berlin I guess?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Originally planned to be opened in 2010, Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER) has encountered a shameful series of delays due to poor construction planning, management and execution. So far, four official opening dates could not be met. One of them was Sunday, June 3rd 2012 - and things looked promising for a long time. Some A.netters suggested to meet there in order to experience the grand opening of BER and the closure of Tegel and Schönefeld Airports.

In Israel, whenever something is messed up the people and the press say "only in Israel: ...", the BER airport scandal caught the Israeli press by surprise, how something like this can happen in Germany.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Parked next to us was EC-KDH of Vueling, one of my least favorite airlines:

One of my "last resort only" airlines too, they are not that cheap too - more then 250 euros on TLV-BCN route, one way! Way more expensive the UX or even LY.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Fleet and network information:

Where is TLV? Windjet was a common visitot here.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
Catania (CTA) - Munich (MUC)
Air Malta KM1308

Had no idea KM is flying 5th freedom flights out of Malta. They are indeed an good-old-government-own airline.

Maybe we will all meet in BER one day  

Thx again, Jonathan

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: The777Man
Posted 2013-01-26 13:07:34 and read 10170 times.

Hi PlaneHunter!

Thanks for another amazing report with amazing pictures !

Very good to see this report online with your visit to meeting in Berlin.

Flights on Air Berlin seems okay. WindJet looks pretty good for a low cost airline. Nice spotting pictures at MXP! The hotel there seems okay. I guess it was very close to the airport ?

Mt Etna looks great even from a distance! Reminds me a bit of Mt Rainer in Seattle.

Air Malta seems very nice! Great to get free beer and meal looks very good to me. Too bad it didn't taste too good in your opinion.

I didn't know Air Malta had this route but very good so you got to try one more airline.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
138th airline

Very impressive number! I hope to add quite a bit more to my flown airline list this year, we'll see.

Looking forward very much to your next report!

The777Man

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: SloAir
Posted 2013-01-26 13:35:46 and read 10125 times.

Hi PH,

great report once again, how nice it was to remember the last big meeting I attended.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
The plane was equipped with AB's latest seats which aren't bad at all...

They look quite ok. Would they be comfortable on a longer flight?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
"Actually we should have landed at the new airport today, but now we are still using good old Tegel Airport!", the captain said after landing.

What a shame! But we had a fun meeting anyways.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
One may argue that the orange nose looked ugly, but all these "Wind Jets" certainly sticked out:

I agree, it might not be the most appealing, but the do stand out in the crowd. Did. Did stand out in the crowd.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
We flew a wide right turn after a powerful takeoff - what a beautiful scenery:

Very cool picture!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Beautiful coastline views after a powerful takeoff:

These beaches look like the ones I visited during my trip to Palermo. We also had some nice views on arrival of the interesting coastline of Sicily.

Thanks for sharing,

Blaž

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-27 00:48:49 and read 9821 times.

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
Thank you for another great report.

Hi Jonathan, thanks a lot for your feedback!

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
You got on windjet almost at the last minute.

Yes, almost!

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
In what used to be the DDR part of Berlin I guess?

No, those are located in the former West Berlin. The DDR-style blocks look/looked even worse.

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
In Israel, whenever something is messed up the people and the press say "only in Israel: ...", the BER airport scandal caught the Israeli press by surprise, how something like this can happen in Germany.

Yes, I cannot believe either how this could happen.

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
One of my "last resort only" airlines too, they are not that cheap too - more then 250 euros on TLV-BCN route, one way! Way more expensive the UX or even LY.

That sounds really bad. Must be horrible to be stuck in these planes on such long flights!

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
Where is TLV? Windjet was a common visitot here.

Probably those were charter flights.

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
Had no idea KM is flying 5th freedom flights out of Malta.

As an EU airline, they can serve any route within the EU.

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
They are indeed an good-old-government-own airline.

And hopefully they will survive!

Quoting EL-AL (Reply 6):
Maybe we will all meet in BER one day

Yes, would be nice! Or somewhere else?

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):
Thanks for another amazing report with amazing pictures !

Hi Lars, thanks so much for your reply! Good to hear you liked it.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):
Very good to see this report online with your visit to meeting in Berlin.

It was about time!

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):

Flights on Air Berlin seems okay.

  

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):
WindJet looks pretty good for a low cost airline.

Yes, it was better than expected.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):
Nice spotting pictures at MXP! The hotel there seems okay. I guess it was very close to the airport ?

Yes, about a 5 minute drive.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):

Air Malta seems very nice! Great to get free beer and meal looks very good to me. Too bad it didn't taste too good in your opinion.

I'd certainly give KM a second try!

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):
I didn't know Air Malta had this route but very good so you got to try one more airline.

Hopefully they will keep flying on that route.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 7):
Very impressive number! I hope to add quite a bit more to my flown airline list this year, we'll see.

LOT was number 147 and 6 new ones are planned within the next few months.

Quoting SloAir (Reply 8):
great report once again, how nice it was to remember the last big meeting I attended.

Hi Blaž, thanks for your feedback!

Quoting SloAir (Reply 8):
They look quite ok. Would they be comfortable on a longer flight?

Well, I guess a 4 hour flight to the Canary Islands wouldn't be a big pleasure.

Quoting SloAir (Reply 8):
What a shame! But we had a fun meeting anyways.

Yes, absolutely! Was nice to meet you again.

Quoting SloAir (Reply 8):
I agree, it might not be the most appealing, but the do stand out in the crowd. Did. Did stand out in the crowd.

  

Quoting SloAir (Reply 8):
Very cool picture!

Thanks! It's one of my favorite pictures in that report.

Quoting SloAir (Reply 8):
These beaches look like the ones I visited during my trip to Palermo. We also had some nice views on arrival of the interesting coastline of Sicily.

I need to visit Sicily again!


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: gabrielchew
Posted 2013-01-27 05:46:17 and read 9643 times.

Nice report Udo...was great to meet you in Berlin!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
"7 new A320s"

Ha, well 6 is nearly 7, and 18 y.o. is nearly new!?!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Bar prices:

Nice to see such a good range of spirits on board...shame they weren't complimentary. Still, good you got a free beer.

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: Widebodyroga
Posted 2013-01-27 06:25:16 and read 9617 times.

Hey PH,

A very nice report filled with some rare Italian (and not only) birds. I'm sure you were pleased with all the spotting achieved in this trip.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Italian low-cost carrier Wind Jet and a Catania-Munich flight on Air Malta, both departing on the next day. Both were new airlines for me and both were in trouble -

I'm glad you got to register Wind Jet before they shut down. It's sad to see them stop operations even though I didn't know much about them.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Mistakes anywhere? Everything looked okay:

Always keeping a watchful eye!  .

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
One may argue that the orange nose looked ugly, but all these "Wind Jets" certainly sticked out:

This "one" would be me! One of my pet peeves about liveries (and why I couldn't stand Malev's livery). No clown nose!

Nice that you got to fly Air Malta too an airline I've always been curious about (despite the very mixed reviews). I would need to try their SOF-ATH route at some point, if its still runs.

Thanks for the nice read,

Widebodyroga

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-27 07:00:09 and read 9575 times.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 10):
Nice report Udo...was great to meet you in Berlin!

Thank you, Gabriel! It was indeed great to meet you after the first attempt had failed in May!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 10):
Ha, well 6 is nearly 7, and 18 y.o. is nearly new!?!

Well, I guess it's a matter of perspective.  

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 10):
Nice to see such a good range of spirits on board...shame they weren't complimentary. Still, good you got a free beer.

I guess free spirits wouldn't improve their financial situation.

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 11):
A very nice report filled with some rare Italian (and not only) birds.

Hi Widebodyroga, many thanks for your feedback!

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 11):
I'm sure you were pleased with all the spotting achieved in this trip.

Yes, absolutely. Malpensa is always a good place for spotting.

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 11):
I'm glad you got to register Wind Jet before they shut down. It's sad to see them stop operations even though I didn't know much about them.

Very sad indeed. There was talk about a restart, but nothing has happened. I guess we won't see Wind Jet again.

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 11):
Always keeping a watchful eye!

  

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 11):
This "one" would be me! One of my pet peeves about liveries (and why I couldn't stand Malev's livery). No clown nose!

I don't like such "clown noses" either.

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 11):
Nice that you got to fly Air Malta too an airline I've always been curious about (despite the very mixed reviews). I would need to try their SOF-ATH route at some point, if its still runs.

Yes, it still exists. Fares are quite attractive.


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: BZNPilot
Posted 2013-01-27 07:29:26 and read 9546 times.

Hi PH,

Thanks for another excellent read.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Several weeks after booking, the BER opening was postponed and my Air Berlin flights would now arrive at and depart from Tegel. Well, I didn't mind so much. I was still looking forward to the meeting and the journey.

It's a shame that the opening of BER has been such a fiasco. At least you kept your positive attitude about making this trip to good old Tegel.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
...but they are lacking a classic seat pocket. This is what you get instead - not suited for storing camera or binoculars:

Not a handy seat pocket at all. The worst is Ryanair, nothing at all!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
"Actually we should have landed at the new airport today, but now we are still using good old Tegel Airport!", the captain said after landing.

Kind of amusing that the captain mentioned that.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
This time the whole row remained empty which I was very glad about.

Always nice when that happens...for one, because I don't feel as awkward snapping a bunch of photos during the flight when I know there's no one there to wonder why I'm doing that.  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
One may argue that the orange nose looked ugly, but all these "Wind Jets" certainly sticked out:

I actually like that orange nose cone. Certainly a different look.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Wind Jet referred to "7 new A320s", but as far as I know it only had 6 frames in service in summer 2012, with an average age of some 18 years...

Ha! A bit of false advertising I'd say.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Then I ordered a Maltese beer and tried to hand over 3 Euros (as suggested in the inflight magazine), but the friendly flight attendant denied and said: "It's free of charge!" thumbsup It was quite tasty:

Nice!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):

P.S.: Just in case you missed them - my previous trip reports:

You have a truly impressive number of reports!

Thanks again for the great report.

BZNPilot

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: OA260
Posted 2013-01-27 07:39:23 and read 9534 times.

Hey Udo  

Great to read your review of the meet. Im also glad Im not the only one with a large delay in writing reports. I need to get writing too  

Nice that you got to try Windjet before they went under. I saw them all lined up here at DUB when they were taken back. I quite liked their seats . Shame about the no window but that happened to me on BA on Friday night! It was quite a shock .

I like the new AB seats also . I prefer these types.

Anyway looking forward to reading more from you this year.

Regards

Philip  

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-27 07:39:27 and read 9534 times.

Quoting BZNPilot (Reply 13):

Thanks for another excellent read.

Hi BZNPilot, many thanks for your reply! Good to hear you enjoyed reading.

Quoting BZNPilot (Reply 13):
It's a shame that the opening of BER has been such a fiasco.

Yes, big big shame.

Quoting BZNPilot (Reply 13):
At least you kept your positive attitude about making this trip to good old Tegel.

Sure, it was still a great meeting.

Quoting BZNPilot (Reply 13):
Not a handy seat pocket at all. The worst is Ryanair, nothing at all!

FR beats them all...at the lower end.  

Quoting BZNPilot (Reply 13):
Kind of amusing that the captain mentioned that.

  

Quoting BZNPilot (Reply 13):
Always nice when that happens...for one, because I don't feel as awkward snapping a bunch of photos during the flight when I know there's no one there to wonder why I'm doing that.

Good point!

Quoting BZNPilot (Reply 13):
Ha! A bit of false advertising I'd say.

Absolutely! It's interesting that they didn't call the much younger A319s "new".

Quoting BZNPilot (Reply 13):
You have a truly impressive number of reports!

Thanks! Many more reports to come!


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-27 07:45:19 and read 9527 times.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
Great to read your review of the meet.

Hi Philip, thanks a lot for your comments! It seems we were posting almost at the same time!

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
Im also glad Im not the only one with a large delay in writing reports.

No, don't worry.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
I need to get writing too

Take your time! It's the result which counts.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
I saw them all lined up here at DUB when they were taken back.

I remember seeing pictures. What a sad sight.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
Shame about the no window but that happened to me on BA on Friday night! It was quite a shock .

Sometimes it simply happens - but it was still acceptable on the IV A319.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
I like the new AB seats also . I prefer these types.

I prefer LH's new seats - but I know many people dislike them.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
Anyway looking forward to reading more from you this year.

Sure, I have started working on the next one. I still need to write about some 2012 trips...and I have booked some exciting flights this year.


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: rogerbcn
Posted 2013-01-27 09:17:25 and read 9465 times.

Hola PH!

Nice memories when reading your report about our meeting in Berlin, we had a great time spotting at TXL before the rain appeared.

AB looks great, the disappeared Windjet had a great nose and seemed to provide an OK service. Impressed by Air Malta and their service on this flight, I did not know they had the rights to fly from Italian soil to European destinations, which is always a good thing to know, just in case....

Hope to meet you again in MAN next April.

Salut!

Roger

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-27 09:38:12 and read 9445 times.

Quoting rogerbcn (Reply 17):
Nice memories when reading your report about our meeting in Berlin, we had a great time spotting at TXL before the rain appeared.

Hola Roger, thanks for leaving a reply! We had a great time indeed, despite the bad weather.

Quoting rogerbcn (Reply 17):
Impressed by Air Malta and their service on this flight, I did not know they had the rights to fly from Italian soil to European destinations, which is always a good thing to know, just in case....

Sure, they can fly on any route within the EU. Too bad that there aren't more such flights operated by KM.

Quoting rogerbcn (Reply 17):
Hope to meet you again in MAN next April.

I still don't know whether I'll be able to take part.


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: Luxair747SP
Posted 2013-01-27 11:59:54 and read 9369 times.

Hi PH,

Very nice report about the meeting in Berlin, really cool to get the impressions of that great weekend again.
Unfortunately we only had very little time to talk.
Also nice to see a review on Windjet, but they seem to be like many other italian carriers like Bluepanorama etc.
KM seems to be quite a good airline, and i liked them too when flying with them some years ago.
Did you like the Cisk?

Thanks a lot for sharing.
Cheers,
Johannes

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-27 22:42:19 and read 9183 times.

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 19):
Very nice report about the meeting in Berlin, really cool to get the impressions of that great weekend again.

Servus Johannes, thanks for your comments!

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 19):
Unfortunately we only had very little time to talk.

True - but we had a nice meeting at LUX!

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 19):
Also nice to see a review on Windjet, but they seem to be like many other italian carriers like Bluepanorama etc.

I'm wondering about the condition of Blue Panorama.

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 19):
Did you like the Cisk?

Yes, it was quite tasty.


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: Sultanils
Posted 2013-01-28 01:59:05 and read 9075 times.

Hello PH,

Good to see this nice report online! A nice selection of flights to come and go to/from the BER err... TXL meet and I'm glad you were able to log the now defunct Wind Jet. Here are some comments:

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
This is what you get instead - not suited for storing camera or binoculars

But at least the legroom is marginally better. I'm in favour of these kind af seat pockets.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Mistakes anywhere? Everything looked okay

  

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Gourmet meals designed by the Sansibar restaurant are offered on all routes with a flight time between 60 minutes and 6 hours:

I had one of these so called gourmet meals on my AB STR-PMI flight. It wasn't a culinary delight and it was rather expensive as well   

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
"Actually we should have landed at the new airport today, but now we are still using good old Tegel Airport!", the captain said after landing.

I remember on 2 of the 4 flights I took to have a same kind of comments by the flight deck crew. If only they knew that today the airport is still nor operational.


Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Numerous members have posted nice reports about the meeting and their flights:

Thanks for the reference!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
D-AGEN, a relatively old bird operated by Germania, was equipped with worn old-style seats:

What a contrast with the previous flight. But despite the thicker seats, the legroom was better and the seat itself looks comfy as well.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
the company's former CEO Hartmut Mehdorn criticized the German air passenger duty - rightfully so!

Is it still in effect?


Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
One may argue that the orange nose looked ugly

Perhaps 'funny' is a better description?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Parked next to us was EC-KDH of Vueling, one of my least favorite airlines:

And that's not only your opinion 

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Faultless fleet information section:

KM passed the test brilliantly. But their fleet is not of the most complicated type-wise  

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
During the second drink run, I ordered a can of ginger ale:

Ha ha, you trademark drink! And the real Schweppes one!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
The obligatory cabin shot:

I really dislike those head rest covers with ads. While I understand that airlines look for ways of more revenue, I feel it makes the cabin look cheap and uninviting.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
P.S.: Just in case you missed them - my previous trip reports:

Your previous 100 ones!

Sultanils

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-28 04:09:56 and read 9030 times.

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
Good to see this nice report online!

Hi Nils, thanks a lot for your comments!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
But at least the legroom is marginally better. I'm in favour of these kind af seat pockets.

I prefer LH's new seats.

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
I had one of these so called gourmet meals on my AB STR-PMI flight. It wasn't a culinary delight and it was rather expensive as well

That's bad - quality should be a priority when charging lots of money.

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
If only they knew that today the airport is still nor operational.

  

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
Thanks for the reference!

You're welcome!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
Is it still in effect?

Yes, unfortunately.

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
Perhaps 'funny' is a better description?

I agree!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
And that's not only your opinion

Good!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
KM passed the test brilliantly. But their fleet is not of the most complicated type-wise

Very true!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
Ha ha, you trademark drink! And the real Schweppes one!

No, KM served the Canada Dry variant - "Schweppes Dry Ginger Ale" is the original and best one.

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
I really dislike those head rest covers with ads. While I understand that airlines look for ways of more revenue, I feel it makes the cabin look cheap and uninviting.

I can only agree!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 21):
Your previous 100 ones!

  


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: knightsofmalta
Posted 2013-01-28 05:21:06 and read 9004 times.

Hi Planehunter

Thanks for the interesting report and for finally taking me out of my misery. When I was in Malta in December I saw a few Windjet aircraft parked up near the Lufthansa Technik facility and I wondered what they were actually like as an airline. As a brand I always thought they were a bit nondescript.

Thanks for posting in any case.

Cheers,
William

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-28 23:38:25 and read 8754 times.

Quoting knightsofmalta (Reply 23):

Thanks for the interesting report and for finally taking me out of my misery.

Hi William, thanks for leaving a reply!

Quoting knightsofmalta (Reply 23):
As a brand I always thought they were a bit nondescript.

Yes, I agree. While its livery was quite distinctive, the carrier didn't offer anything special.


PH

[Edited 2013-01-28 23:38:52]

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: MSS658
Posted 2013-01-29 00:30:45 and read 8732 times.

Hello PH

Once again a great read from your side! It's great to follow up on your latest adventure.
I was glad to meet you again in TXL last June, even if the time was limited.
Looks like you had some good flights, I can only agree about AB! Definate on par with LH to say at least.

Windjet and Air Malta don't look bad, too bad to hear about Windjet... Still nice that KM serves a free meal on a 2hr flight (even if the taste was not so good)

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Boeing 737-75B
D-AGEN (s/n 016),
Delivered in 03/1998

Had this bird between Stuttgart and Berlin TXL the day prior. report still to come..

Greetings
Marc

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: lychemsa
Posted 2013-01-29 05:50:04 and read 8683 times.

I am impressed by the Air Malta meal.

In the US you get zippo. Also to the Caribbean zippo.

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-01-29 05:57:42 and read 8683 times.

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 25):
Once again a great read from your side! It's great to follow up on your latest adventure.

Hi Marc, thanks for your feedback!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 25):
I was glad to meet you again in TXL last June, even if the time was limited.

Yes, it was a short nice meeting. Fortunately, we had more time at MUC in August.

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 25):
Still nice that KM serves a free meal on a 2hr flight (even if the taste was not so good)

Sure, one has to praise the fact that meals are still offered.

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 25):
Had this bird between Stuttgart and Berlin TXL the day prior. report still to come..

I'm looking forward to this one!

Quoting lychemsa (Reply 26):
I am impressed by the Air Malta meal.

I cannot complain about quality - some items simply didn't taste good.

Quoting lychemsa (Reply 26):
In the US you get zippo. Also to the Caribbean zippo.

...which is a shame.


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: jwhite9185
Posted 2013-01-30 04:53:58 and read 8516 times.

Yet another interesting read there PH.

Interesting to see how Air Malta are. I actually came very close to booking a flight with them a few weeks back, but decided to go to Portugal instead. They're still on my radar though as the prices were pretty reasonable. Although from your pics, they do look a bit LCC with all those advertisements.

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: SRQKEF
Posted 2013-01-31 09:28:21 and read 8286 times.

Hi PH!

Another nice report from you we have here. Windjet seem ok, wish I would've had a chance to fly them. Their orange noses definitely stuck out.
Air Malta also looked fine and I would like to try them sometime in the future. Malta is also a place I would like to visit.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
My plane from Berlin-Tegel arrived on time

The 737-700 looks kinda beasty from that angle.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
and countless houses:

Nice approach pics.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Rather unattractive housing blocks:

Is Tegel located in East Berlin? Those blocks look rather Soviet to me...

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
D-AGEN, a relatively old bird operated by Germania, was equipped with worn old-style seats:

Look comfy to me. I much prefer those old thick leather seats over the new-style thin seats that seem to be the norm these days!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
The legendary "AirBär" going to Australia on Air Berlin's biggest single shareholder Etihad Airways:

Hahahha those engines on the Etihad plane are narrower than the hairdryers on the A343!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Catania and the famous Mount Etna:

Nice view.  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
Bluebird Cargo 737-300F

Ah, an old friend of mine. I've come inside the albino Bluebird a few times but I've never actually flown it unfortunately. My dad has flown it twice though. Once to CGN and once to Liege.  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 3):
I ordered a can of ginger ale:

The classic PH.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 3):
and numerous passengers started clapping.

Oh, I hate when people to that. So "cheap" and annoying. The pilots don't even hear it when pax clap!

Regards,
Sveinn  

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-02-01 22:41:25 and read 8002 times.

Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 28):
Yet another interesting read there PH.

Hi James, thanks for your reply!

Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 28):
I actually came very close to booking a flight with them a few weeks back, but decided to go to Portugal instead. They're still on my radar though as the prices were pretty reasonable.

You should really give it a try soon, who knows hong long it will be able to survive.

Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 28):
Although from your pics, they do look a bit LCC with all those advertisements.

Yes, absolutely true. I didn't like these ads either.

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):
Another nice report from you we have here.

Hi Sveinn, thanks a lot for your feedback!

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):
Their orange noses definitely stuck out.

  

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):
Air Malta also looked fine and I would like to try them sometime in the future. Malta is also a place I would like to visit.

I have never been to Malta either, I should really go there soon. KM is certainly an interesting carrier.

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):

The 737-700 looks kinda beasty from that angle.

Yes, I like that, too.

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):
Is Tegel located in East Berlin? Those blocks look rather Soviet to me...

No, these houses are located in the western part of the city. The Soviet-style blocks look even worse.

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):

Look comfy to me. I much prefer those old thick leather seats over the new-style thin seats that seem to be the norm these days!

I have to agree.

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):
Hahahha those engines on the Etihad plane are narrower than the hairdryers on the A343!

Good observation!

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):
Ah, an old friend of mine. I've come inside the albino Bluebird a few times but I've never actually flown it unfortunately. My dad has flown it twice though. Once to CGN and once to Liege.

Nice. I'd love to take a flight on such a bird one day.

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):
The classic PH.

  

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 29):
Oh, I hate when people to that. So "cheap" and annoying. The pilots don't even hear it when pax clap!

I don't like it either. But on such typical holiday flights, you'll always find passengers who don't fly much.


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: FLIEGER67
Posted 2013-02-02 10:24:16 and read 7893 times.

Hi, PH,

now that´s a really good idea to start this reminder for the Berlin meeting.
And also the Windjet experience is for sure a good catch.
Well done, as usual and nice pictures.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
By the way - EI-EUA plane used to fly for Spanair as EC-IYG and as such once carried fellow user FLIEGER67.

Ah, good to know.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: infodesk
Posted 2013-02-03 09:32:54 and read 7740 times.

Hi PH,

Good to read about the Berlin meeting, what a great weekend that was. And of course congrats to you for finding such an exotic routing and catching Windjet.

I particularly enjoyed reading about KM, as I flew with them at Christmas, and I love your photos of Sicily from the air.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Actually we should have landed at the new airport today, but now we are still using good old Tegel Airport!", the captain said after landing.

Nice touch that the Captain mentioned it. There was no word about it on my LX flight out of TXL on the Sunday, indeed the cabin crew knew nothing about it.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Some minutes later, we discovered the crowd and it was great to see familiar faces again and to meet others for the first time in person.

Yes it was, a truly successful meeting

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Additionally, I ordered orange juice and - after being offered a warm drink as well - a cup of tea:

I’ve noticed how proactive AB is about offering a hot drink as well, something I really like. This often doesn’t happen on LX.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
9H-AEM arrived

That aircraft took me to Malta for Christmas  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
A cold meal was served which didn't overly impress me:

The meal I got was certainly better, yours doesn’t look too appetizing. Then again, on how many airlines would you get a tray of that size on a 2 hour flight?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
Then I ordered a Maltese beer and tried to hand over 3 Euros (as suggested in the inflight magazine), but the friendly flight attendant denied and said: "It's free of charge!" It was quite tasty:

Nice gesture by the FA, but you really should have ordered a Kinnie  

Happy flying
Infodesk   

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: roberts87
Posted 2013-02-03 11:22:30 and read 7703 times.

Great report PH, it's good to read about your trip to Berlin and your flights on some nice and interesting airlines after the meet!

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: aerdingus
Posted 2013-02-03 12:27:43 and read 7682 times.

I´ve never seen a Windjet tr & was curious to try them, alas they are now gone. I like the orange noses on the A320s, I thought they looked like clowns. I saw a lot of the a/c parked up at DUB after they went bust but thankfully now it seems a lot of them have flown away & gotten jobs!

At least you got a chance to sample them & as always, thanks for sharing  

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: signol
Posted 2013-02-05 04:08:11 and read 7517 times.

Hi PlaneHunter,

Excellent report as always!

Air Berlin look to be solid as always. A shame the snack wasn't a pastry but still, it is better than nothing  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
The former airship hangar once used by the liquidated logistics company CargoLifter AG has been converted into a leisure resort

I would very much like to visit this one day, it has an artifical beach (complete with sand) inside, kept permanently warm, you can even camp on the beach overnight  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Some minutes later, we discovered the crowd and it was great to see familiar faces again and to meet others for the first time in person

It was great to meat you too  

WindJet look, well, average. They were clearly selling tickets too cheaply to stay in business though, unfortunately.

Did you get a pizza at Catania?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 3):
Flying Air Malta was a pleasure, I was just disappointed by the meal

A shame, my only trip on KM from London both ways we were served a hot meal - as is policy on flights over 2h (I think I recall). Nice of the FA to offer the beer for free though  

Thanks again!

signol

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-02-09 03:53:09 and read 7272 times.

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 31):

now that´s a really good idea to start this reminder for the Berlin meeting.

Hi Markus, thanks for leaving a reply!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 31):
And also the Windjet experience is for sure a good catch.

  

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 31):
Well done, as usual and nice pictures.

Thanks, good to hear!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
Good to read about the Berlin meeting, what a great weekend that was.

Hi Hannah, thanks a lot for your comments!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
And of course congrats to you for finding such an exotic routing and catching Windjet.

Thanks!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
I particularly enjoyed reading about KM, as I flew with them at Christmas, and I love your photos of Sicily from the air.

Sicily looked really nice from the air, I need to spend a vacation there.

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
Nice touch that the Captain mentioned it. There was no word about it on my LX flight out of TXL on the Sunday, indeed the cabin crew knew nothing about it.

Quite odd!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
Yes it was, a truly successful meeting

Absolutely!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
I’ve noticed how proactive AB is about offering a hot drink as well, something I really like. This often doesn’t happen on LX.

I have frequently noticed it on LH, too.

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
That aircraft took me to Malta for Christmas

Nice!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
Then again, on how many airlines would you get a tray of that size on a 2 hour flight?

True, one has to appreciate the fact that they still serve meals free of charge.

Quoting infodesk (Reply 32):
Nice gesture by the FA, but you really should have ordered a Kinnie

Interesting, hadn't heard of it. I need to try that one day.

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 33):
Great report PH, it's good to read about your trip to Berlin and your flights on some nice and interesting airlines after the meet!

Thank you, Robert! Good to hear you enjoyed it.

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 34):
I´ve never seen a Windjet tr & was curious to try them, alas they are now gone.

Hi aerdingus, thanks for leaving a reply! Too bad you couldn't try IV any more.

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 34):
I like the orange noses on the A320s, I thought they looked like clowns.

Good point.

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 34):
I saw a lot of the a/c parked up at DUB after they went bust but thankfully now it seems a lot of them have flown away & gotten jobs!

And some of the older birds have been scrapped...

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 34):
At least you got a chance to sample them & as always, thanks for sharing

  

Quoting signol (Reply 35):

Excellent report as always!

Hi signol, thank you very much for your feedback!

Quoting signol (Reply 35):
Air Berlin look to be solid as always. A shame the snack wasn't a pastry but still, it is better than nothing

  

Quoting signol (Reply 35):
I would very much like to visit this one day, it has an artifical beach (complete with sand) inside, kept permanently warm, you can even camp on the beach overnight

Sounds interesting.

Quoting signol (Reply 35):
It was great to meat you too

Was great to meet you, too!

Quoting signol (Reply 35):
WindJet look, well, average. They were clearly selling tickets too cheaply to stay in business though, unfortunately.

The product was indeed average.

Quoting signol (Reply 35):
Did you get a pizza at Catania?

Yes, it was very tasty! But I couldn't find a good dessert.

Quoting signol (Reply 35):
A shame, my only trip on KM from London both ways we were served a hot meal - as is policy on flights over 2h (I think I recall). Nice of the FA to offer the beer for free though

Probably they have a new policy now?


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: akhmad
Posted 2013-02-09 05:57:42 and read 7249 times.

Dear PH,

It’s so great to read your side of the story about our BER meet.  


Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
not suited for storing camera or binoculars:

Hopefully big enough to stow your notebook.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Gourmet meals designed by the Sansibar restaurant are offered on all routes with a flight time between 60 minutes and 6 hours:

Currywurst for me please!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
I guess that's because the percentage of overly thirsty holiday makers is rather limited on domestic flights...   

Could Schengen area be considered domestic?  


Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Not yet...and nobody knows when.  

Only Heaven knows….

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
JU-1011, one of MIAT's two 767-300ERs, was the highlight of the afternoon:

Absolutely!   


Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
In this editorial, the company's former CEO Hartmut Mehdorn criticized the German air passenger duty - rightfully so!

Hopefully, German will follow The Netherlands’ example to abandon the passenger duty soon.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Details about the carrier's service concept:

Well done! Everyone should know what to expect without any argument!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
Cathay Pacific and the big Arabian trio:

MXP still beats AMS on that!   


Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
I was surprised to see one of the pilots standing next to a flight attendant - and both of them gave me a friendly welcome.

What a nice gesture!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
Then I noticed that a couple in the 40s was occupying the window seat and the aisle seat and I had to tell them that 24F was mine. At least they moved without further discussion.

They just tried their luck.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
A cold meal was served which didn't overly impress me:

What a pity! I am craving for my favorite eggplant.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 2):
Then I ordered a Maltese beer and tried to hand over 3 Euros (as suggested in the inflight magazine), but the friendly flight attendant denied and said: "It's free of charge!"

Great! Could the bar list only apply to charter flights?


Thank you for sharing and have a nice weekend!  

Best wishes,
Suryo  

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: flykev
Posted 2013-02-09 11:48:55 and read 7199 times.

PlaneHunter,

Thanks for sharing these flights with us; certainly made for some interesting reading.

Must admit, the Air Berlin flights looked somewhat decent (and hey, I would certainly order the Currywurst if I flew with them for over 60 minutes), WindJet looked "ok" and Air Malta sounded quite decent though I will agree the food was a little lacking (though in this day and age, free food is free food right?)

As ever, I look forward to reading about your future flights.

Kev.

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: FlyingSicilian
Posted 2013-02-09 21:22:16 and read 7112 times.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 36):
But I couldn't find a good dessert.

There is a canoli shop airside that is normally good.

Air Malta flew to London from Catania for many years and I flew them on that route a few times. They were hit or miss, but I've heard they are better lately than 4-5 years ago.

nice trip report!

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-02-12 22:37:35 and read 6689 times.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 37):
It’s so great to read your side of the story about our BER meet.

Hi Suryo, many thanks for your comments!

Quoting akhmad (Reply 37):
Hopefully big enough to stow your notebook.

Well, the notebook is so small that it disappears in that "pocket".

Quoting akhmad (Reply 37):
Currywurst for me please!

  

Quoting akhmad (Reply 37):
Only Heaven knows….

Are you sure?  

Quoting akhmad (Reply 37):
Hopefully, German will follow The Netherlands’ example to abandon the passenger duty soon.

Yes, hopefully!

Quoting akhmad (Reply 37):
MXP still beats AMS on that!

Just a matter of time until that will change.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 37):
Great! Could the bar list only apply to charter flights?

Probably, but I couldn't find such a remark.

Quoting flykev (Reply 38):
Thanks for sharing these flights with us; certainly made for some interesting reading.

Hi Kev, thanks for leaving a reply!

Quoting flykev (Reply 38):
Must admit, the Air Berlin flights looked somewhat decent (and hey, I would certainly order the Currywurst if I flew with them for over 60 minutes)

Yes, I still need to try that, too.

Quoting flykev (Reply 38):
WindJet looked "ok" and Air Malta sounded quite decent though I will agree the food was a little lacking (though in this day and age, free food is free food right?)

True, one has to be glad about free meals.

Quoting flykev (Reply 38):
As ever, I look forward to reading about your future flights.

Much more stuff to follow!

Quoting FlyingSicilian (Reply 39):
nice trip report!

Thanks!

Quoting FlyingSicilian (Reply 39):
There is a canoli shop airside that is normally good.

Yes, I tried canoli, but didn't like it. I missed a classic tiramisu at CTA.

Quoting FlyingSicilian (Reply 39):
Air Malta flew to London from Catania for many years and I flew them on that route a few times. They were hit or miss, but I've heard they are better lately than 4-5 years ago.

Let's hope that they will maintain the current service level.


PH

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: eastafspot
Posted 2013-02-25 22:21:02 and read 6155 times.

Hey PH,

Great report with very good pictures and interesting details as usual
AB is a fascinating concept and they look quiet popular.
Of course, it's really pity about the grand ceremony but at least you meet other fellow a.netters. Actually do you have any idea about the expected new date?
always nice to discover new airline especially Windjet even if it has now vanished

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
my hometown is not too far from this position:

Nice, where is it?

Thanks for sharing

Topic: RE: Berlin A.Net Meeting, Air Malta & Wind Jet (R.I.P)
Username: PlaneHunter
Posted 2013-03-25 11:10:40 and read 5317 times.

Quoting eastafspot (Reply 41):

Great report with very good pictures and interesting details as usual

Hi Léo, many thanks for your comments! Sorry for my delayed reply.

Quoting eastafspot (Reply 41):
AB is a fascinating concept and they look quiet popular.

Well, it has been interesting to follow its development. But it really needs to return into the black.

Quoting eastafspot (Reply 41):
Actually do you have any idea about the expected new date?

They don't give an exact date any more. 2014 is what has been suggested recently...but I wouldn't be surprised about 2015 or later.

Quoting eastafspot (Reply 41):
always nice to discover new airline especially Windjet even if it has now vanished

  

Quoting eastafspot (Reply 41):
Nice, where is it?

Northwestern direction...  



PH


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