Sponsor Message:
Aviation Trip Reports Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
BD J LAS-MAN FEB 2009 With Pix Link  
User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1920 posts, RR: 9
Posted (5 years 7 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 8508 times:

Farewell to bmi transatlantic service

Hi all,

Here is one of the my February trip reports and it is a rather sad occasion. BMI announced its ending of all transatlantic operation last year and as a fan of bmi transatlantic service, I feel that it is only right if I fly from the US to Manchester on one of its beautiful Airbus A330-200s again. Unfortunately, I can’t make it to the last ORD to MAN flight, which was my original intention, and after searching through www.flybmi.com, I found a business class reward flight from Las Vegas to Manchester on February 12, 2009, so I jumped on it. It is an interesting flight for me, as it is my first flight flying out from an international flight from Las Vegas and finally a eastbound transatlantic flight on bmi. Here is my full report.

Photo link:
http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=8QbNHDNy5bqM9Q

February 12, 2009
BD 752 LAS-MAN Lv1350 Arr0740+1 Airbus A330-200 G-WWBB

Check-in:
Swissport is the official agent for bmi here at Las Vegas. There were separate lines for economy, premium economy, and business/Star Gold members, and the agents were friendly. There was no wait, but the J agent was busy on the phone. It took her five minutes before waving me over. She was efficient but here was my only problem for this trip. I had booked 1K for this flight, but when I got my boarding pass, I saw 3G, which is an aisle seat. I immediately asked her what had happened to my original seat. She just did not know what happen and could not find me another window seat. It was quite upsetting as it was possibly my last bmi transatlantic flight. Well nothing could be done. She was quite apologetic about it and immediately told me where the lounge was.

Most international flights here at LAS used terminal two, which was very simple, compared to the newer terminal one especially Concourse D. Well it was better than I thought, and when I asked the TSA agent if there were any food outlets inside the secure area, she was actually friendly and told me that there were a few typical fast food outlets and coffee joints. TSA was not busy as the flights were quite spread out and as you can tell from the screen, there were not many flights.

Lounge:
There was one single lounge here at T-2, and it was called the Las Vegas Lounge. The lounge was rather average with few armchairs, a bar area, a small business center and basic restroom facilities. Nothing too special, but the staffs were extremely kind and made the plain lounge experience a bit better. Snacks were limited to packaged ones, cheese and crackers, and light snacks, and there was an open bar staffed by one of the nice attendants (no self-serving beverage stations – alcoholic or non-alcoholic), but I struggled if I should tip the attendant!

Planespotting:
G-VTOP Virgin Atlantic’s Boeing 747-400 “Virginia Plain” from London LGW
XA-ZIM and N997AM Aeromexico’s Boeing 737-700 Winglet
I saw an interesting airline, Sunwing, which was featured on my photo album. They operated their “very delayed” Calgary flight with a nice looking Boeing 737-800 with winglet.

Boarding:
Gate 4 was our gate this morning, and the aircraft, G-WWBB, arrived Las Vegas only a few minutes behind schedule. BTW, this is my second flight with G-WWBB, but also meant that I am not able to fly all three BD A330-200s (G-WWBM is still missing from my list). The flight looked pretty full to me and I wonder if the yield is really that dismal for bmi to cancel the flight. Boarding began at 1:28pm, after a few wheelchair passengers got on board. Business class was almost 100% full and the F/As were busy chatting with passengers. Pre-takeoff beverage was offered and champagne kept flowing during the twenty minutes of boarding time. The chef, Phil, passed out the menus for today’s flight. The F/A, Cathy, passed out amenity kits, headsets and hung up coats. The purser, Annie, made her round greeting each business class passengers. Door was closed a minute early at 1:49pm, and we pushed back five minutes later. Las Vegas was not terribly busy at this early afternoon hour. We took off from R/W1R at 2:11pm.

Flight fact:
Flying time was nine hours and seventeen minutes, shorter than normal due to flavorful tailwind. The routing took us over Grand Canyon, as we climbed up to 37,000feet. We passed Aurora, Colorado, North Platte, Spencer, Fairmont, Wausau, Escanaba, Sault St. Marin, near Val D’Or, and leave the North American continent by passing Goose Bay, Canada, and we climbed up to 40,000feet. Finally we saw land again as we passed the Irish city of Donegal, and then South of Belfast before descending towards Manchester.

Seat:
I really like the new generation bmi seats, despite a little lack of storage space, but I rate it above BA’s Club World. First, the seat looks smart with the beige upholstery and there were quite a number of positions you can choose. Both the seating and full flat sleeping positions are comfortable, and I had a very nice five to six hours sleep, and there is no sliding on the full flat position. The seat does not sink very low. The new television is huge and there are shoe storage bins. There is also a bottled water holder, but the position was a bit odd. I basically think bmi has a good product and competitive if they have the right to start Heathrow to USA service. It is such a waste for relatively short flight to Cairo, but I guess the further Saudi Arabia and Middle East service will be good with it especially the redeye segment.

Beverage and meal:
There were cutbacks from my previous experiences, and there was no longer individual breadbasket (but a very nice choice of warmed soft white or wholemeal brioche rolls were offered on this flight) and the portion can be small for the entrée. Quality is actually better than expected especially outbound from an overseas station. The onboard chef, Phil, spent much time preparing the dish and the presentation looked nothing but gorgeous. The F/As were very generous with additional serving if you requested them. However, they ran out of cheese plate but Cathy immediately offered me a second dessert.

Breakfast order was taken after tea service, and I was surprised that there was not the automatic fruit plate first, and then entrée second. I am just so used to most Asian airlines style – fruit plate and yogurt first, and followed by the entrée. And the menu was written to imply that. But my request for a yogurt after my egg dish was honored with no problem. Breakfast was served around 6:07am Manchester time, an hour and half prior to landing, which was a perfect time – not too early and not too late.

Here is the full menu transcript and wine list.
Wine List
Champagnes
Champagne Cattier Brut Antique Premier Cru
Chigny-les-Roses
France

White Wines
Pinot Blanc
Cave De Turckheim
Alsace
France

Semillon Sauvignon Blanc
Deep Woods
Margaret River
Australia

Red Wines
Clos Bagatelle
Saint-Chinian
Languedoc
France

Monvi
Colli Perugini Rosso
Umbria
Italy

Cabernet Sauvignon
Mill Creek
Sonoma County
USA

Sandeman 20 Years Old Tawny Port
Glenlivet 18 Years
Courvoisier XO
Chivas Regal

MAN/LHRBUSWINE09-01/01

Las Vegas to Manchester
February 2009
Dinner
Starter
Cream of Mushroom Soup
Seasonal Salad
Vegetable and goat’s cheese parcel with tomato chutney
Smoked duck slices with dried fruit compote

Main Course
Sacchettini filled with ricotta and served with a tomato sauce
Flax and Mustard Seed Crusted Halibut with confetti rice
Grilled chicken breast in an applewood bacon jus with dauphinoise potatoes and oven roasted vegetables
Moroccan lamb chop with citrus and chili sauce, butternut squash, courgette and baby onions

Personal Bakery Selection

Dessert
Apple Dumpling with caramel sauce
A Trio of mocha, white chocolate and brandy cream mousses
Ice cream
Cheese plate – farmhouse cheddar, Stilton and rouge affine

Express meal option
In order to allow you to maximize your personal time – to sleep, work, or relax – we are pleased to offer an express meal option on this flight, in place of the a la carte meal menu.
Personal Bakery Seleciton with either:
- a mixed seasonal salad and soup
Or
- your choice of one of the main courses
Please let a member of the crew know if you wish to opt for an express meal today.

Anytime
Barbeque beef and cheddar ciabatta
Cheese plate – farmhouse cheddar, Stilton and rouge affine
Fresh Fruit plate
Ice Cream
Cappuccino
Espresso
Irish Coffee
Freshly ground coffee
Twinings tea selection
Hot Chocolate
Horlicks
Green and Blacks Chocolate

Breakfast
Freshly squeezed orange juice
White peach smoothie
Fruit yogurt
Choice of cereals
Fresh Seasonal Fruit
Bakery selection with preserves and marmite
Warm Chocolate Bread
Warm Cinnamon Bread
Freshly prepared white and brown toast

The Great British Breakfast
Crispy bacon, sausages, grilled tomatoes, sautéed mushrooms, rosti potatoes, choice of fresh fried or scrambled eggs from the skillet
Boiled eggs, bread and butter

BusLas-man 08-0111 J3

Entertainment:
Definitely the weakest part of the flight, compared to its UK competitors, Virgin Atlantic and British Airways. There was no audio video on demand and the movies and television programs run in a cycle. I watched the comedy channel, which was fine, but with a new cabin, I expect an upgrade on the entertainment system. Fortunately, the old system meant the nose view and downward view camera are on, and I can watch the sunrise on my screen despite not having a window. The F/A made an effort to make sure we get the view of takeoff and landing on the PTV.

Flight Attendants:
They are all really friendly and that aspect has not changed. There were three F/As serving the J cabin, with the chef in the galley, and Cathy and one other F/A serving the passengers. The service was not rushed and beverages were refilled during the meal services. Annie, the purser, was very sweet and checked on the J passengers, after the services were completed in the back. I think the friendly F/As on its long haul flights are bmi’s strongest asset (Unfortunately, I can’t quite say the same for the short haul flights though), and I will miss my BD experience because of them.

Amenities:
There is an amenity kit and you can check out the contents in my photo album. I also rate BD’s amenity kit above BA and Virgin (well not really offering an amenity kit, but they have pajamas) and I like the brown and blue leather design. The quality of the bag was not too great and the zipper was already not working after I open them for photo purpose, but I like the leather cardholder or photo frame.

Landing:
Descent began at 6:58am and we landed on R/W5R at 7:28am. We parked at gate 55 eight minutes later, next to American Airlines’ Boeing 767-300ER N346AN arriving from Chicago. There was no line at immigration, as the AA flight arrived much earlier and most folks are returning UK residents. The agent asked me many questions but maintained her smile throughout the short Q & A session. Bags came out shortly after I entered the baggage hall. Priority bags made out first and it made a very good ending to my bmi experience. This aircraft will head back to Antigua in a few hours.

Conclusion:
I will definitely miss bmi transatlantic service, and sad that they never got a chance to develop flights from London Heathrow to the USA. I heartily thanked Annie and Cathy especially for an excellent flight, as well as the rest of the F/A team.

Next report will be on another high quality regional airline, VLM.

Carfield

[Edited 2009-02-21 08:54:49]

10 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinePhileet92 From United States of America, joined Jul 2006, 303 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (5 years 7 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 8371 times:

WOW! the food on Bmi looks spectacular! surely restaurant quality. i didnt even know they fly to LAS. great trip report!

User currently offlineLH4116 From Sweden, joined Aug 2007, 1714 posts, RR: 18
Reply 2, posted (5 years 7 months 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 8169 times:

Wow, great report Carfield!

I have never in my wildest expectations though that BMI's J class product was maybe one of the best in Europe. The seats looked superb, and the leather seat covers looked like a great change from the regular fabric made ones.

When it comes to the catering, i must say that it looked amazing. The presentation looked exactly like something you would get on a real restaurant. Now, it sure beat the crap out of most other airline's F class dining, i must say. And the savory biscuit snacks looked like a nice change from the regular trail mix offered on most airlines. I guess it had something to do with people who are allergic to nuts, right?

Thanks for sharing

//Jonas



SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
User currently offlineTDubJFK From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (5 years 7 months 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 7983 times:

Very nice report and pics!

The "chef" thing seems a bit of a silly affectation to me, though. He's just in the galley plating pre-cooked food ... no diff than a F/A could do.


User currently offlineFCA767 From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2006, 1765 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (5 years 7 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 7732 times:

Not bad...it feels funny seeing the BMI with the Las Vegas Strip...Normally my view is BMI with a Manchester Airport Gate docked to it Big grin

User currently offlineComeflywithme From Argentina, joined Sep 2006, 265 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (5 years 7 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 7587 times:



Quoting Carfield (Thread starter):
Seat:
I really like the new generation bmi seats, despite a little lack of storage space, but I rate it above BA’s Club World.

Wow, not so sure about that one but everyone to their own opinion. BA's, latest CW seat is in my opinion not the most comfortable about but is very well designed for privacy especially if travelling on your own. BMi's amenity kit certainly beats BA's but they are a bit stingy with the food.The lamb looks super but take away the bone and you aren't left with much.

Enjoyed your report,many thanks.


User currently offlineLASOctoberB6 From Japan, joined Nov 2006, 2380 posts, RR: 1
Reply 6, posted (5 years 7 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 7511 times:

Wait. Wait a minute. BD is not going to fly here anymore? That's actually really very sad. I loved seeing them here..


[NOT IN SERVICE] {WEStJet}
User currently offlineJamesontheroad From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 545 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (5 years 7 months 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 6497 times:



Quoting LASOctoberB6 (Reply 6):
Wait. Wait a minute. BD is not going to fly here anymore? That's actually really very sad. I loved seeing them here..

Afraid so. BD are ending all their trans-Atlantic service from MAN, and their three A332s are moving to LHR to work routes in the middle-east (TLV amongst others). During their time at MAN, BD have served St. Lucia, Antigua, Barbados, Chicago, Las Vegas, and for a shorter time Washington DC and Toronto.

They will be sadly missed :'(

http://www.airliners.net/aviation-forums/trip_reports/read.main/116831


User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1826 posts, RR: 19
Reply 8, posted (5 years 7 months 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 6035 times:



Quoting LH4116 (Reply 2):
Now, it sure beat the crap out of most other airline's F class dining, i must say.

Please let me know which airlines you're referring to so I'll remember not to use them. I mean, come on...


User currently offlineBA319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8546 posts, RR: 55
Reply 9, posted (5 years 7 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 5898 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Thanks Carfield,

Great report and pictures as always, mnay thanks.

Quoting Carfield (Thread starter):
I had booked 1K for this flight, but when I got my boarding pass, I saw 3G, which is an aisle seat. I immediately asked her what had happened to my original seat. She just did not know what happen and could not find me another window seat

- I hate it when this happens!

Food looks good though the main looked a little light on food, ammenity kit looks better than BA's and as you basically said, forget the VS one!

Regards

Mark



111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
User currently offlineElevate From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2009, 144 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (5 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 5389 times:

Hi James,

A fantastic report of a fantastic airline (even if they are pulling out of LBA  ), it's a shame we don't see BMA reports that often!

Quoting Jamesontheroad (Reply 7):
Afraid so. BD are ending all their trans-Atlantic service from MAN, and their three A332s are moving to LHR to work routes in the middle-east (TLV amongst others).

They're moving the two Manchester based Airbus A330-200s to LHR, the third (G-WWBD) has been there for at least a year.

Sam

[Edited 2009-02-26 04:21:33]

Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic BD J LAS-MAN FEB 2009 With Pix Link
Username:
No username? Sign up now!
Password: 


Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Remember me on this computer (uses cookies)
  • Trip reports only! Other topics here
  • If criticizing an airline, express yourself in a dignified manner.
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Do not post copyright protected material.
  • Use relevant and describing topics.
  • Check if your post already been discussed.
  • Check your spelling!
  • DETAILED RULES
Add Images Add SmiliesPosting Help

Please check your spelling (press "Check Spelling" above)


Similar topics:More similar topics...
LX F (CPH-)ZRH-HKG With Pix Link May 2008 posted Fri Jun 20 2008 19:23:27 by Carfield
QR HKG-DOH-CDG In First With Pix Link posted Thu May 29 2008 01:50:34 by Carfield
BA BKK-LHR In NCW With Pix Link posted Wed Mar 5 2008 17:45:51 by Carfield
AC 77L J Class HKG-YYZ With Pix Link posted Sat Jan 12 2008 16:55:29 by Carfield
AZ J FCO-JFK Nov 2007 With Pix Link posted Mon Nov 26 2007 16:25:41 by Carfield
SQ New J SIN-FRA Nov 2007 With Pix Link posted Mon Nov 26 2007 16:22:26 by Carfield
Virgin America Revisit F JFK-SFO-LAX With Pix Link posted Tue Nov 20 2007 10:27:09 by Carfield
Alaska Inaugural HNL-SEA With Pix Link posted Mon Oct 15 2007 20:33:57 by Carfield
AC XM NRT-YVR In J With Pix Link posted Mon Oct 15 2007 20:16:16 by Carfield
ANA ClubAsia HKG-NRT In J With Pix Link posted Mon Oct 15 2007 20:12:28 by Carfield

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format