Flyboy_se From Qatar, joined Feb 2000, 778 posts, RR: 5 Posted (5 years 10 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 8701 times:
First of all,i would like to apologize for not having any cabin or meals shots.I wasn't planning on writing a TR at first.
Anyway, after a dark and long winter , i decided to take out some vacations and go someplace warm.
After searching online i settled for Mexico and city of Playa Del Carmen.When my colleague heard she decided to follow with me.
There is direct charter service from ARN to CUN operated by Air Finland 757 on behalf of several Swedish tour operators.
The reason we didn't like this option is that the plane is extremely cramped, and also there is a technical stop in Halifax, so not really a non stop.Also, it turned out that this option was most expensive one too.
At the same time KLM was having a huge sale , so we found tickets from ARN to JFK for only 3500 SEK/pp (around 350 EUR) .From JFK we found a good deal on B6 for only 150 USD/pp return.As we didn't want to worry about the connections we decided to spend a night in both directions in New York, and also to relax between the flights.
Anyway , finally we were all set and the departure date slowly came.
PH-BDK 737-400 Jan H. van Linschoten
We came to ARN at about 07:50 in the morning.As we have checked in online we went to the bag drop off counter which was empty.The regular check in cue was quite long.
The lady at the counter printed our boarding passes and then said that the flight was oversold and asked us if we wanted to fly on the non stop flight to EWR instead on CO.We would land at noon local time, some 4 hours earlier, and we would get 150 EUR in compensation. While it was tempting, we decided to turn it down.First of all, that flight was departing at 09:00 so we had to stress, and second we have booked hotel close to JFK, so even tho we would arrive way earlier we would still had to go to JFK for our hotel.And having flown CO 757 last year on that route, it was nothing to look forward too.Also, i have never flown on a MD-11 before, so didn't want to miss that.So we declined the offer and took our boarding passes and proceeded to security, which was quite long this day.
Our gate was 16A
ARN was not so busy, and most of pax seemed to be going on KL.
boarding started on time and we were welcomed by a friendly crew.Flight departed few minutes early and we had the seat next to us free.This was also the only free seat in economy on this flight, so we were lucky.
Soon after take off the drinks were served , followed by a tasty ham and cheese sandwich.after the meal the crew came round with coffee/tea and cookies (stroepekoekjes i think)
What i like about KL is that their service is consistent, well at least on Euro sectors.The crew is always friendly, and the service is excellent for such a short flight.
shortly after take off from ARN
Soon we were landing in AMS a bit ahead of schedule.
We proceeded straight towards passport control and then to gate E2 where our plane was all ready waiting.
PH-KCB waiting at gate
we had to go thru a extra security check before we are let in the gate lounge
then we had to wait forever.the crew came quite late to the gate,some 40 minutes before departure.
The lounge was extremely full, and soon there was not even place for people to stand, yet sit.
at some 20 minutes before departure, the captain came.And finally some 10 minutes before departure they made an announcement that we are still waiting for the cleaning to be completed.As we have seen how late the crew came, it was quite strange explanation , and especially since there were no cleaners to be seen. Anyway, finally they started boarding at our departure time.
Since this was my first time onboard a MD-11 i was thrilled. This plane had the new 3-3-3 config.The cabin was bright and clean and seemed very well maintained. I was also surprised by the huge windows and plenty of legroom.
we left the gate 30 minutes late, and took off shortly after.
Soon after take off the drinks and peanuts were served. As i didn't eat anything while in AMS i started to get hungry.
Then we waited and waited.First after almost 2 hours the crew came out with lunch.They started from the front of economy and it took them a long time to reach our row.It was the slowest service i have seen.When they reached our row we were offered chicken or pasta.I choose the chicken.Its was quite a small portion and not filling at all.After finishing the meal, i discovered that the crew was only 4 rows behind me still handing out food.Anyway, i felt asleep and slept for 2 hours.When i woke up, the trays from the lunch haven't been collected yet.I have never seen this before.
Finally the trays were collected almost 3 hours after we got them.After that we got ice cream and another drink service.
Here are some shots during the flight
Some 90 min before landing we were given a small quiche with a drink.The service this time was somewhat rushed.
The crew seemed quite bored and not very service oriented.This is the first time i saw this on KL.So was a bit disappointed. Soon enough were were descending towards JFK.
we parked at the gate some 20 minutes late.
As we were staying the night it was not a problem for us.
immigration was hassle free and soon we were on our way to the hotel.
We stayed at the Comfort Inn Jamaica, close to hotel.It was clean and cheap.
As soon as we got there we ordered a real NY pizza as we were starving...lol
I was a bit disappointed with crew on this KL flight.They were not as friendly as usually.I guess there are bad apples everywhere.
Anyway, after spending a night in NY it was time for our next flight
N???JB (didnt get the reg) A320
we arrived at JFK at 05:30 in good time before our flight.
There was small cue at check in and we were checked in withing 5 minutes.
Not that many people around so we passed thru security really quickly.
The JetBlue terminal is quite ok, but most of the stores opened late.
After grabbing some breakfast it was time to board at 07:30 sharp.It was quite a light load (40%) so we boarded quickly and left the gate some 10 minutes early.
There was a small cue for takeoff, and soon we were in the air.
We were served with full can of soda(yay) and a choice of snacks.Soon after that i fell asleep and woke some 40 minutes before landing.
JetBlue is really a great airline, and their staff were really friendly.
We went thru immigration and got our luggage in no time.We took the ADO bus to Playa del Carmen and arrived there at 1 pm.Not bad.
here are few photos from Playa
Jewel of the seas
After a nice 3 weeks of relaxing it was time to go home.
We took the 8am bus from Playa to CUN.We arrived there 45 minutes later and
went straight to check in.
There was no line so we were checked in in no time.
boarding started exactly 30 minutes before departure.And soon we were all onboard.To my surprise it was another light load (40%)
My seat was 4F and the legroom was more then plenty.I have never seen so much legroom.Not even at emergency exit
amazing legroom in seat 4F
as i took that picture, a F/A came to me and said that its forbidden to take photos.I was really surprised since i took them on previous flight without problem.
Anyway, i put away my camera, but as soon as she went i took few more discreetly.
After take off we got some great views of Isla Mujeres.
We were served drinks and tasty snacks again.
The flight was pretty uneventful and we landed at JFK 30 minutes early.
We parked at a remote stand and were bussed to T4.Immigrations was painless and the officer was real nice.
Our bags were already on the belt and just as we were about to pass the customs i noticed i haven't got a stamp.So i had to go back to the same officer.Otherwise i could get in trouble next time i visit US.
Anyway soon we were on our way to the hotel
taken from AirTrain
We spent a night in NY before going home.
Here are some photos of NY.It was quite cloudy and rainy
PH-BFM City of Mexico 747-400 Combi
Seat:31G changed to 31C
We arrived at JFK some good 3 hours before our flight was due to depart.
Since there was a small cue we decided to use self service machines.
There was a member of Swissport, that handles KLM at JFK , leaned on one of the machines and chewing gum not so discreetly.As i didn't need his help i went to one of the machines further away.I haven't even started and he comes over and ask where i am going.I said ARN, and then he went on to press the buttons.I said i didn't need help, but he didn't listen.So he printed our boarding pass, and i noticed he gave us middle and aisle seat in the middle of the plane.
When i asked if i can change he said its a full flight.On the flight from AMS to ARN we got aisle seats across from each other.So i asked how about the next flight, he said we had to do it in AMS, because they cant do it there.It was unbelievable.I said i wanted to put in my FB card number, and he said we have to do that in AMS too.
It was the rudest agent i have ever come across.
We went to security and it was quite a lot of people.
When we passed security we noticed there was nothing inside apart from a tax-free/souvenir shop and a kiosk.Really bad.
Our flight was called on time and soon we were inside. As we were about to take our seats a guy asked us if we would mind swapping seats so his wife and daughter could sit with him.So we agreed.
We pushed back right on time, and then had to wait over an hour to take off.Just as we took off i fell asleep and woke up just as we were landing.So cant say much about the service on this flight.
Despite our late departure we still managed to arrive on time.
In AMS we had a 3 hour wait untill our next flight.
We had some breakfast and lunch and then went to our next gate and waited
We boarded on time and it looked like a full flight.
Our plane was equipped with winglets and looked very clean.
As i was tired i didn't take any pictures.
The service on this flight was good as usual.
We arrived at ARN few minutes early.
The only bad things was that we had to wait for our luggage more then 40 minutes.
I dont know why,but this happens all the time at ARN.no matter what airline you fly.
Anyway, i hope you enjoyed.Sorry for the quality of some pictures.
KLM was good as usual apart from the AMS-JFK flight, but i hope its a one off thing.
Every other time they were really great.
Jetblue was also great.Would definitely fly them again
BA319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8412 posts, RR: 55
Reply 3, posted (5 years 10 months 1 week 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 7516 times:
Great report and picture, thanks for sharing with us.
Quoting Flyboy_se (Thread starter): having flown CO 757 last year on that route, it was nothing to look forward too.Also, i have never flown on a MD-11 before, so didn't want to miss that.So we declined the offer
- Wise move as 150 euro's is not that much really.
Quoting Flyboy_se (Thread starter): Just as we took off i fell asleep and woke up just as we were landing.So cant say much about the service on this flight.
- Wow, I tend so sleep well on plane but not this well!
Shamrock321 From Ireland, joined May 2008, 1585 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (5 years 10 months 1 week 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 7315 times:
A really excellent and enjoyable trip report! I cant believe that anybody working on behalf of KLM or any other airline would be chewing gum while working. Im a baggage agent in DUB and constantly worry about if people think Im rude, this is just awful!
Indeed it was.I dont regret for sticking to my choice.MD-11 is an amazing plane
Quoting BA319-131 (Reply 3): Wow, I tend so sleep well on plane but not this well!
The thing is i dont sleep well on planes, but on this trip i managed to sleep on all flights.Its amazing..lol
Quoting Shamrock321 (Reply 4): A really excellent and enjoyable trip report! I cant believe that anybody working on behalf of KLM or any other airline would be chewing gum while working. Im a baggage agent in DUB and constantly worry about if people think Im rude, this is just awful!
Thanks. I know, i was quite schocked. No matter what airline, you just dont behave like that
Where did you made that 'front shot'? It looks like from an, for passengers, forbidden area.
Actually while waiting for boarding for our flight, i went to the toilets which are located in the gate area downstairs.When i got there i was surprised to see huge windows with a great views.So i took a shot.
Quoting OA260 (Reply 7): Hey Petar ,
Your so lucky , what a cool trip. That beach in Mexico looks so nice , im jealous lol....
Nice photos and read. So you are all re charged now for a busy Summer at ARN !!!
Thanks for the great report
Thanks Philip.Yes Playa Del Carmen is really a nice place.Much nicer then Cancun.I can really recomend it.
When i was all re charged , but it lasted 2 days.Now i just want to go back..hehe.
Alltho the summer seems to be nice this year at ARN, so cant really complain.