Justbala From India, joined Feb 2006, 149 posts, RR: 0 Posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
I had to travel to Calgary in the month of September for a 3 day presentation. This is a TR of the onward leg from India to Calgary. The leg from BLR-DEL has been left out as that was your typical 9W domestic flight a.k.a professional and pleasing!!
My option for flying to YYC from BLR included a single stop flight via LHR on BA , or via FRA - YYZ - YYC on LH / AC or DEL - YYZ - YYC on 9W / AC .
Being a huge 9W fan and a member of JPMile program and the fact the 9W had just launched the DEL - BRU - YYZ on their new A332 just the week before, choosing 9W was a no-brainer!!
My itinerary was was follows
3 9W 226 N 12SEP 3 DELYYZ HK1 0245 1215
4 AC 145 L 12SEP 3 YYZYYC HK1 2040 2250
5 AC 170 L 16SEP 7 YYCYYZ HK1 0900 1645
6 9W 225 S 16SEP 7 YYZDEL HK1 2015 2335
There was an 8 hr waiting at YYZ and my AC flight to YYC landed close to midnite. I had an early meeting the next day. My travel agent told me tht he was not able to book me on an earlier flight, but I could try after landing in YYZ.
DEL - BRU - YYZ
Flight : 9W 226
Reg : VT-JWG
A/C - Airbus A330-200
ATA : 12:10
Since I was connecting at DEL on 9W domestic flight from BLR , I got thru checked in all the way from to YYC from BLR itself.
The baggage tag all the way to YYC from BLR
At the Domestic Arrival in Delhi, one of the 9W staff took my checked in baggage and said tht I could proceed straight to immigration at the international terminal. The inter-terminal shuttle (complimentary) at DEL is very bad, esp compared to the one in BOM. Heard this has been upgraded now in DEL too.
DEL international terminal was not very crowded on that day. There have been lot of changes in the international terminal since my last trip there in March.
My previous trips via DEL have been horrendous, the long queues and line jumping!! But this time things were much better and hope are a good indicator of things to come!!
The new queuing system has reduced the mess that used to be the security line at DEL.
New Duty Free shops at the departure area.
Somethings however never change
After Clearing security, found out that the 9W flight was boarding from one of the lower gates (gate 2) via buses.
View of the waiting area at Gate 2
Shortly afterwards, the crew for the flight came along and it surely was impressive. The new yellow uniforms for female F/As is very eye-catching. This was apparent even in YYZ , the smartly dressed 9W crew had heads turning!!
The flying deck was manned by 4 foreigners and 1 Indian - 2 of the expat pilots were carrying bags marked with "Sabena"!!
The flying crew was primarily based out of DEL with two BKK based crew also on board. For all the crew members, this was the first trip to BRU and YYZ. The had a days halt at BRU and then to YYZ , two days there then back to BRU, one more day off and then finally back to DEL. Thanx to this I had the same set of crew on my return leg also.
The crew was first bussed out. While we waited for our boarding announcement, we were informed that the boarding gate for 9W 226 has now been shifted to one of the aero bridges (later the captain informed us that this was due to commercial reasons!!)
We trudged back up (there was a lift available too!!) and in a short while boarding commenced. The load looked pretty light that day. I was one of the last to board.
As usual, there was a smiling 9W F/A at the door, waiting to greet you and direct you to your seat. I have noticed that DEL based crew have an higher proportion of male F/As.
The A330 interiors were very similar to the ones of the 773 - the followed the same palette and similar seating- except tht J in 332 was 1-1-1 while in 773 it was 1-2-1 and the Y was 2-4-2 instead of 3-3-3 and of course no "Flying Suites" - F Class. More pics of the interiors later.
JetScreen IFE - AVOD Standard on all 9W Long haul flights and select B737
The crew distributed towels and comfort kit. The safety demo was done manually. (Flew 9W to LHR last month, they have now shifted to the demo on the IFE, however it looks a lot tacky, with some bad animation!! They shud hv used some of their beautiful F/As instead!!)
We pushed back half an hr behind schedule and without much waiting taxied to the active. The take off was much slower than the 773 but a whole lot smoother!!
After reaching cruising altitude the crew distributed the menu cards for the DEL-BRU legs, which consisted of a refreshment and breakfast cycle.
Succulent Morsels of chicken in a mild marinade cooked in the tandoor, lamb mince with spices and herbs wrapped around a skewer and finished on charcoal, melange of vegetables bound with a potato mash, shaped and griddled
Achari Paneer Tikka
Cottage cheese infused with pickling spices cooked in the tandoor, pan fried galette of plantain mash with ginger, cummin and green chilly.
Reduced milk dumplings soaked in saffron flavored milk, served chilled
Tea or Coffee
Johnie Walker Red label
Jack Daniel's tennessee Whiskey
Gordon's Special London Dry Gin
Bacardi Carta Blanca Rum
Old Monk Dark Rum
Australian Red/White wines
International Selection of Beer.
My Dinner - Non Veg
After the dinner I opted to go to sleep and skipped the IFE considering tht I had 3 more legs to cover the same !!
Got up again with less than 2 hrs to land into BRU. Looking out of the window, most of the landscape was hidden under a thick layer of clouds.
People were slowly waking up n making their way to the rear loo. The crew set abt preparing the breakfast and soon we had a good n welcome aroma of coffee n snacks wafting in the cabin!! They also came around with warm towels.
Tray - half folded
Tray - Fully opened
Cabin lights on for the breakfast service
View across the aisle
Crew doing the breakfast round
The break fast options included South Indian, North Indian and Continental.
Break Fast Menu
Chilled Fruit Juice
Fresh Seasonal Fruits
Medu Wada With Pongal (South Indian)
Paneer Bhurji, Aloo Methi Paratha, Palak and Corn Tikki (N.Indian)
Croissant and Fruit Preserve
Alcoholic Beverages as before
My breakfast - Continental
There are very few areas tht 9W needs to improve on. One of them definitely is their Bread selection!!! The croissant is cold brittle and oily, the only sore spot on an otherwise delicious breakfast!!
Soon after the breakfast trays were cleared, we were ready to land into BRU which was covered under thick early morning clouds.
Breaking thru the cloud cover
Landing at BRU
Taxing to our gate
Our neighbours - AA , UA , LO , LX and EZ
The slimmed down IFE unit
The rear Y cabin - seats with the saddle back head rest.
The forward Y cabin
J class cabin
J class seat
J Class Bar
All pax deplaning at BRU.
Everyone has to deplane in BRU, irrespective of your onward travel. 9W has implemented a Scissors Hub at BRU with services from BOM to EWR and DEL to YYZ meeting at BRU on either directions. (Now it has been expanded to DEL-JFK, BOM-EWR and MAA-YYZ). So that means you can take the BOM-BRU-EWR flight from BOM and changeover at BRU if you wanna go to YYZ on 9W.
I think this is a extremely good strategy by 9W and by the looks of it seems to be paying off. We had abt 20-30% of pax xferring to the EWR flight and a bigger number coming on board from the BOM flight. Now with fewer a/cs they can connect more number of cities. There were also quite a few non-indians who boarded the flight from BRU.
The layover at BRU is between 90 mins to 2 hrs, with a crew change.
At BRU terminal 9W signage is all over the place and is difficult to miss. 9W staff (both Indian and European) along with BRU airport staff were on hand to give Transit cards and shopping discount vouchers to all pax.
All pax have to go through a security check before going up to the departure area. 9W staff was available here to help if required. One problem with this though is that, the EU "liquids on board" restrictions apply to all pax!! So if you have bought any duty free liqour from india (or from the US/Canada on the return leg) you might have to surrender it here. The 9W check in staff do warn abt this in India.
Transitting at BRU
9W staff waiting in case of assistance at the arrival gate
Arrival lobby of BRU
Brussels Airport - Welcome to Europe!!
9W Signage at BRU
Welcome Jet Airways!!
After Security you need to go up one level to the departure area.
9W B773 VT-JEC from EWR to BOM
Internet Kiosk at BRU
Our A332 being prepped up for its trans-atlantic flight to YYZ, as yet another 9W a/c (B773 from BOM to EWR) taxies to an adjacent gate
9W B773 from BOM to EWR docking at BRU
Action at Adjacent gates -
BT , OK and AA
Walking through the concourse, I noticed that there were quite a few SN flights scheduled to Africa. If 9W can use its codeshare with SN effectively and provide competitive fares ex- India to these destinations they can tap into a huge market that currently relies on ET and KY.
The BRU Concourse - Pretty long and not very crowded unlike FRA.
One of the coffeeshops along the concourse
The Angel of the north
Over all BRU is a pleasant airport, not crowded like FRA or LHR or cramped like VIE. However the duty free options are limited. Apart from that it is a gr8 place to while away coupla hours.
The boarding for the YYZ flight was announced on time.
Going down to the aero bridge
View of our a/c
We were welcomed by a fresh set of crew, once again DEL based. The BRU-YYZ sector is served by DEL based crew while the BRU-EWR is served by BOM based. There were also two Thai crew members.
The a/c was cleaned and prepped during the layover and the crew quickly distributed towels and menu cards. No comfort kit as this was a day flight!! The security demo was once again performed manually, both in Hindi and English.
The Jet Inflight mag (featuring the newly introduced service to YYZ!! ), IFE guide and Shopping catalogue
Our new neighbour - EI
The 9W B773 to EWR
The schengen pier at BRU
Turning on to the active
Take off roll from BRU
Just after take off, if u zoom in u can c the Atomium
After abt 40 mins the cabin crew began the drinks and lunch service
The Lunch Menu
Murgh Rogini Chicken Cooked in a rich sauce made with brown onions and tomatoes served with potatoes and french beans tempered with cumn, ginger and chillies, rice cooked with fresh fenugreek and raita (curd with sliced cucumber and onion)
Paneer Subz JalFrezi Btons of fresh cottage cheese and mixed vegetables cooked with onions, tomatoes and peppers served with potatoes and rench beans tempered with cumn, ginger and chillies, rice cooked with fresh fenugreek and raita (curd with sliced cucumber and onion)
Indian Bread - paratha
Fruit Kheer Indian style rice pudding embellished with fruits
Beverages as before
Poached Fish Poached catfish fillet napped with a "Ostendaise" sauce of grey shrimp and mussels, mixed european vegetables and a leek and potato mesh
Apple Cake Perched on Vanilla custard
Beverages as before
I chose the international selection and it was very good..
Lunch (or wht remained of it after i remembered to take a pic!!)
The load was abt 50-60%. The rear Y cabin had like 3-4 pax per row and most people simply stretched out
The A330 safety card
The crew on board this sector was also DEL based, young, enthusiastic and very very professional. I chatted up with the crew manning the rear galley. One of them had done this sector the week before and he informed me that the load was around 90%. Others were on their first trans-atlantic journey and their excitement was palpable!! The sheer energy of the 9W crew has amazed me on all their flights. And contrary to popular beliefs, Indian F/As esp. 9W are a chatty lot!!
The crew came around quite a few times with water and juices. Most people opted to sleep thru this sector. I checked out most of the movies on offer in the AVOD IFE, which is quite a selection!!
About 90 mins before arrival, the crew served refreshments along with another round of drinks service
Murgh Chatpata Chicken pieces marinated in yoghurt, chillies and spices cooked in a clay oven
Shammi Kebab Galettes of spiced lamb and bengal lentils, miced and griddled
Aloo Corn Tikki Spiced potato mash with corn kernels shaped into galettes and griddle
Paneer Hare Pyaaz ki Tikki Minced cottage cheese with fresh chopped spring onion and powdered Indian spices, shaped into galettes and fried
Paneer Goli Kebab Cottage Cheese and cilantro roundels napped with a spicy sauce
Khatte Mutter Citric Glazed peas
Dessert - Angoori Rabdi Cottage cheese dumplings served in a sweetened reduced milk
Beverages as before
My refreshment - Non Veg
Crew clearing the trays
A view of the cabin - feels spacious!!
View of the rear galley
Beverage section, with cork screw opener
Our route map from BRU to YYZ
Descending into YYZ
Downtown Toronto (u can c the CN tower far far away!!)
Touching down at YYZ
Karan and Monica - gr8 work guys!!
Took some time chatting up with crew and taking sm pics together.. and headed out to immigration
Adieu my bird..
The immigration at YYZ was chaotic. There were two lines - one for pax transitting to other cities in Canada and one for folks ending there journey at YYZ. The first one was comparatively faster and I was one of the first to come get to the baggage carousel. The baggage was there but the passengers were still stuck at immigration!! The belt was choked and they had to stop it. As my luck wud have it, my bag did not turn up. Soon the crew also cleared immigration and joined me while we waited for the rest!! Some of the crew baggages tags had come off and as a result their bags did not turn up.
Finally after 45 minutes after I left the a/c, my baggage appeared on the belt. I went to the AC checkin counters just outside the international arrival, and tried to get an earlier flight. The best i cud get was an hr earlier. Took tht and still had to wait 7 hrs at YYZ for my connection to YYC.
The AC flight to YYC was on an A321. I was so tired by this time that I just crashed in my seat and the next thing I know we have reached YYC!!!!! This has never happened to me before on an a/c!!Anyways more on AC in my return TR. (My return flight from YYC to YYZ was on an AC E-90 - my first ever!!)
Overall 9W sticks to its high standards!! A pleasure to fly on and something that as an Indian, I can be proud off!!
Flown IC , 9W , SQ , SV , GF , S2 , LX , IT , LH , OS , DN , AC , MH , 6E , MI , AA , TG , EK , QR , SG , TK , KW, UA ,
AA767LOVER From Hong Kong, joined Aug 2007, 551 posts, RR: 0 Reply 4, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
Your trip report was very impressive and I find Jet Airways quite nice inside. With your long legs, the Econ seats seemed quite cramped for you, if I'm not mistaken. I saw how the table doesn't go all the way down.
I know you prefer 9W. But how does Air India fare in terms of quality and service standards? Do you think others like Kingfisher might go international?
I personally welcome you to my birthplace - Calgary. I hope your stay there was very nice! We need more people from all over to come to Calgary more often. Too many Albertan hillbillies there and hard core racists that it's not funny! At least when I was growing up, that was the case. If you're Chinese (like me) or Indian or even Aboriginal, good grief they don't even respect their own people!!! Calgary in all its best is a great metropolitan city, vibrant, and it's nightlife is still centered on downtown. The good stuff is in the South side of Calgary - lots of restaurants, Calgary's largest shopping centre - Chinook Centre. We have Stampede in July. We have lots of great steak! AAA prime beef! In Calgary, you may have already discovered that we have good Indian food there too!! I like Toronto better because of the huge variety of Indian buffets. While I'm not a Naan fan, but I am a samosa fan!!! I love em baked rather than deep fried.
Enough on my side, but I really hope you enjoyed Calgary.
J.I. Tsui, American Advantage Member, United Mileage Plus (Premier)
BandA From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 336 posts, RR: 0 Reply 15, posted (5 years 4 months 3 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
GREAT JOB bala,
What an excelelnt Trip Report!!!!
This is exactly how a proper TR should be... really appreciated your photographs and videos. Absolutely loved it!
Keep it up!
PS - Cute commentary by the kid in the first video sounded like when I traveled sitting next to a 8 year old punjabi kid traveling alone and for the first time... I wish I had recorded some of the comments he made... hilarious.
(food pics have made me hungry)
"They [Terrorists] never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." - GWB
VinnieWinnie From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 727 posts, RR: 0 Reply 20, posted (5 years 4 months 2 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
Thanks for this TR been waiting for ages to see an assessment of BRU by people using Jet airways!
Quoting Justbala (Thread starter): All pax have to go through a security check before going up to the departure area. 9W staff was available here to help if required. One problem with this though is that, the EU "liquids on board" restrictions apply to all pax!! So if you have bought any duty free liqour from india (or from the US/Canada on the return leg) you might have to surrender it here. The 9W check in staff do warn abt this in India.
Very silly I really wonder why 1) You have to go through a security screen again 2) Go through the arrival corridors before going up again 3) surrender your liquids (though this has happened to me in ZHR when transferring)
Quoting Justbala (Thread starter): However the duty free options are limited. Apart from that it is a gr8 place to while away coupla hours.
Yeah it is pretty boring although if you have time you can always go past the security screening point where you will find more shops!
Hehe you were lucky to find yourself in the busy period of BRU other than that it is pretty quiet!
How many people entered the plane from BRU? Any idea?
Justbala From India, joined Feb 2006, 149 posts, RR: 0 Reply 21, posted (5 years 4 months 1 week 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
Thank you everybody for all the encouraging comments!! Appreciate that.. will be posting my return TR as soon my work here gives me some breathing space.. I am in Israel for coupla months n due to my Single entry visa no flying around for me!!
Quoting AA767LOVER (Reply 4): With your long legs, the Econ seats seemed quite cramped for you, if I'm not mistaken. I saw how the table doesn't go all the way down.
Well the leg space was quite comfortable for the whole flight.. although now when I look at the pic they seem to come out looking cramped!! :-P probably the angle in which i took the pic.
Quoting AA767LOVER (Reply 4): But how does Air India fare in terms of quality and service standards? Do you think others like Kingfisher might go international?
AI's service standards are well not comparable to 9W. Although people who are looking for an "Indian" experience might like tht. I have had some of my friends from the West say that 9W did not give them an "Indian vibe" at all!! :P AI's service depends on the sector, the age of the crew and quite often the color of ur skin n the cost of ur suit!! (I have never flown AI on international sectors, these are opinions I have heard from my friends and relatives)
IT would be the Indian version of VS, when they go international. I hope they bring out a fantastic and consistent product this year!!
I just got an evening out in YYC and I liked the city. Tasted some Indian cuisine down town. The next time I am there plan to hit Banff and the glaciers!! The people I met seemed friendly , but then I was there just for 3 days!!
Quoting TKMCE (Reply 17): ****
If 9W can use its codeshare with SN effectively and provide competitive fares ex- India to these destinations they can tap into a huge market that currently relies on ET and KY.
Please dont forget your geography! Except for a few destinations in North Africa, the travel time will be huge and for this reasons fares very uncompetitive over the more direct routings on ET and KY.
I was referring to places in West and North Africa. Destinations like Dakar, Morocco and surroundings. I have a family friend in Dakar, who flies to India via ACC and DXB. They tried ET once in J and swore never to fly them again!! It's always good to have options!!
Quoting VinnieWinnie (Reply 20): Very silly I really wonder why 1) You have to go through a security screen again 2) Go through the arrival corridors before going up again 3) surrender your liquids (though this has happened to me in ZHR when transferring)
I think a second security check is standard. BRU does not have any check at the gate, so this is OK. In VIE when you are transitting you go through a secuity check at the gate and if you have liquids more than EU regulations you will have to dump them there.
How many people entered the plane from BRU? Any idea?
In the rear cabin I did see abt 10 new faces. Not sure of the remaining, although there were some Europeans, who seemed to have boarded from BRU.
It's very difficult to tell if the new faces you see on these 9W flights are originating from BRU, due to the fact that a lot of passengers from the other 9W flights could be transferring to your particular flight at BRU.....
Justbala From India, joined Feb 2006, 149 posts, RR: 0 Reply 24, posted (5 years 4 months 1 week 2 days ago) and read 32767 times:
Quoting Gr8Circle (Reply 22): It's very difficult to tell if the new faces you see on these 9W flights are originating from BRU, due to the fact that a lot of passengers from the other 9W flights could be transferring to your particular flight at BRU.....
Well tht number was based on the following observations - 1) They did not seem to have an overnite flight on them.. looked fresh 2) They seemed to be speaking Dutch/German . Maybe I was wrong, but thats just an observation.
Quoting Flyingchoirboy (Reply 23): It's interesting that 9W plays music in the cabin during landing. I've never had that happen to me on a flight before!
Cabin music while landing is standard on all 9W domestic and international flights.
Flown IC , 9W , SQ , SV , GF , S2 , LX , IT , LH , OS , DN , AC , MH , 6E , MI , AA , TG , EK , QR , SG , TK , KW, UA ,
25 Ag92: The difference between earth and the sky If they don't than they are making a huge mistake. They certainly should and will with the A380/340 coming s
26 Gr8Circle: Yeah, that's interesting....I flew 9W YYZ-BOM-YYZ just shortly after they launched the flight to YYZ and the crowd was Indian all throughout (even on
27 SA006: Great report....Enjoyed it... Just a quick question , do 9W have international flight crew? (pilots) Or are they mainly Indian? -SA006
28 Vio: Very nice trip report. I really enjoyed it. I can't believe you had to wait that long for the flight to YYC. Ouch!!! Personally I would've flown with
29 Gr8Circle: I flew on the A332 and the 773 on my flight from YYZ-BOM-YYZ and on ALL the flights, the commander was either European or American....the FO's were I
30 Aseem: just saw the landing video of YYZ. The Rnwy used was 23 and is favourite for spotters