Sponsor Message:
Aviation Trip Reports Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Flying The 'NEW' Maharaja? AI In Y To CCU  
User currently offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 15476 times:

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC029831-1.jpg


Another long two months have passed and finally I get the chance to fly away again. I swear I have done more flying on Facebook’s ‘Virtual Flying’ app than I have in real life! But moving on from that I’d like to welcome one and all to my sixth TR which will be covering 3 out of the 4 flights I took during my recent two week trip to India to visit my family. I would have posted this TR as soon as I came back, however for 2 weeks I have been surviving without internet access.

B A C K G R O U N D

This was to be my second visit to India this year as I went back in February for my cousins wedding and I was eagerly looking forward to going back. As for the booking, it was made through Southall Travel which normally gives the best fares to India, and this was no exception. I managed to get an Economy Class ticket for £377 travelling with Air India on the routing LHR-DEL-CCU-DEL-LHR. Considering the distance and prices of other airlines like EK and LH which were offering in excess of £500, I thought I got a very good deal.

However the real answer would lie with Air India as to whether or not their new service would be indeed like their slogan; ‘Your Palace In The Skies’.


Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
31 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Reply 1, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 15676 times:

OUTWARD JOURNEY


D A Y O F D E P A R T U R E

As per usual whenever I travel with my parents, I always leave my packing till the last moment which infuriates my mother. My father catches up with the last bits of paperwork before heading to the airport. However that’s not before making me record a message on the answering machine and then ringing it to make sure that it is clear and precise!

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02410.jpg
Our luggage before leaving

Our taxi driver arrived on time at 17:30 as per requested plus he is a good friend of mine who lives a few houses down the road which is equally as helpful. With all the luggage in the people carrier as well as the three travellers, we headed off to Heathrow Terminal 3 and this time I don’t get a sense of de ja vu as I have my camera with me. There wasn’t much traffic as we reached Heathrow Terminal 3 by 18:20 and being a weekday, it didn’t seem as busy as I thought it would be.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02416.jpg

C H E C K - I N

We headed inside to Zone E where the Air India check-in desks are located. The First and Executive counters are straight in front when you enter through the door with the Economy Class counters just to the side. Luckily as we had arrived early there wasn’t a queue, however the check-in staff were very slow in processing out bags and handing our boarding cards for both legs of the journey. The Air Mauritius flight was checking-in next door and if I had the choice, I would have easily gone back there for a relaxing holiday. By 19:00, we had boarding cards in hand as I headed outside to take a few terminal shots before we went upstairs and headed through security.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02418.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02411.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02412.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02413.jpg

P R E - B O A R D I N G

Being a weekday, the queues at security were minimal and by 19:15 we were through as we sat down in the busy departure lounge area. I went on my usual walkabouts around the terminal to WHSmith to get my word search book and the latest issue of Airliner World. On the way back after getting some food for my parents, I went to duty-free where I bought some CK cologne for myself. Always helps when you smell nice!

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02421.jpg


Can anyone see what wrong information is written here?

An hour passed relatively quickly as at 20:15 we headed to Gate 27 which was a five minute walk (a bit more as my father has a walking stick) and there wasn’t a decent place to take a picture of our aircraft which I wasn’t happy with! But then again with all the reflections that I would have got from the terminal lights, it probably wouldn’t have come out great.

We got seats right next to where the boarding would eventually start from and the gate didn’t even become full which made me think that the flight wasn’t full.


F L I G H T D E T A I L S

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02426.jpg

Date:- Wednesday 8th September 2010
Route:- London Heathrow (LHR) - Delhi (DEL)
Airline / Flight Number:- Air India / AI 112
Departure (Actual) / Arrival (Actual):- 21:30 (21:35) / 10:30 +1 (10:05 +1)
Aircraft / Reg:- B777-337/ER / VT-ALU
Class / Seat Number:- Economy / 22A

Like with every other airline I’ve flown on, Air India called passengers in order of row number. Now normally this isn’t a problem, however I have noticed that Indians don’t seem to have that much patience as everybody got up and then when they showed their boarding cards to the staff, they got turned back and were told to wait until their row number was called. This didn’t happen once, but it seemed more people were coming back than going on board which made me laugh!

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02427.jpg

Boarding started at 20:30 and by 20:40 my parents and I were onboard the newest of Air India’s B77W fleet, which at the time I didn’t know had only been delivered two months prior. The interior was very clean and presentable and the had the rich colours of yellow, orange and red. As I settled down in my seat I saw Oman Air standing at the next gate to my left and on the right was the Air Mauritius flight. From my seat I could see the purple lighting from inside the Oman Air aircraft in the Business Class section. I hope to fly with them one day soon.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02431.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02432.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02434.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02436.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02437.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02444.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02445.jpg
Leg space very good at 33" even for someone big like myself

By 21:10 our captain Ludi Rodriguez asked all ground staff to deplane as the cabin crew shut the doors and the safety demonstration begun. I was surprised as the flight wasn’t even 75% full in Economy, and as for the mini Executive Class section in front of us, well lets just say that out of 14 seats there were only 5 people! We pushed back at 21:15 as the flight time was announced as 7hrs 55mins. There wasn’t that much traffic and this time it seemed we by passed all the other planes waiting to take-off unlike my flight with Kuwait Airways.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02448.jpg


http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02449.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02460.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02465.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02467.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02470.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02476.jpg

By 21:35 we were speeding down Runway 27L as we took-off and banked to the left back over the airport and then headed out to the English Channel and onto Delhi. Landing cards for India were handed out as soon as the seat belt signs were turned off which was good to see. My IFE screen wasn’t working for some reason so after asking a stewardess to reset it I watched some music videos on my I-Pad which was my saviour during the whole holiday in India including the flights.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02492.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02497.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02500.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02504.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02509.jpg

A snack of peanuts along with a glass of coke was sufficient for me before dinner as I watched the best of Mr Bean on the IFE. Typical humour followed as I laughed a bit too loud when my mother looked over at me and told me to bring the volume down. Oops!

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02512.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02514.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02516.jpg

Now I don’t know about you, but I always like to know where I am in regards to the flight, the amount of time left and other things as well. So imagine my amazement in reading the following information below only an hour after take-off from London.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02519.jpg

Dinner was served by 22:40 GMT as we were flying over Vienna. I have to admit that the service was quicker than normal, but I only presume that was the case as everyone was falling asleep already. Dinner consisted of rice, chana (cottage cheese), some vegetables and also chicken which came separately which was a good thought as I didn’t want oil all over my food.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02520.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02523.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02524.jpg

The trays were taken about twenty minutes later as we encountered some slight turbulence over a few lakes and mountains which is the norm. I stretched my legs by walking up and down the aisle and saw that there were so many empty seats towards the back of the plane. Lots of people got three seats to themselves which turned into a mini-bed for them. I got a few drinks, then watched Lee Evans in concert on my I-Pad as the lights got turned off as everyone else went to sleep.

I on the other hand couldn’t sleep as I always seem to get pain in my calf muscles which lead to cramp. The term is called RLS or ‘Restless Leg Syndrome’ which is a pain as I cant seem to sit still. So I was glad that mum was sitting next to me as she is used to this. The cabin crew came round with water for the passengers that were awake. My mother and father were both fast asleep so I carried on listening to music on my I-Pad and movies on the IFE system.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02511.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02505.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02518.jpg

It seemed that I opened the window shutter at the perfect time as we encountered sunrise somewhere over Iraq with the mountain peaks just visible out of the clouds.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02527.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02536.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02535.jpg

Soon after the mood lighting kicked in which was very pleasant and easy on the eyes, especially for the people that were waking up. The sky was very bright outside and the reflection of the aircraft was visible off the red engine.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02539.jpg

Continental breakfast consisted of a croissant and cake which was eaten as we were flying over Quetta at 08:20 IST. The clear blue sky made for a few good pictures of the engine and the long raked wing which I love about the B77W.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02543.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02549.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02550.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02553.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02560.jpg

An hour later we started our initial descent into Delhi and slowly but eventually we touched down on Indian soil twenty-five minutes early as I caught my first glimpse of the new Terminal 3 at Indira Gandhi International Airport.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02566.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02567.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02569.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02571.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02576.jpg
First glimpse of Delhi's new T3

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02577.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02579.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02580.jpg



Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
User currently offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Reply 2, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 15615 times:

C O N N E C T I N G F L I G H T


P R E - B O A R D I N G

After disembarking off our flight, there were airport staff who were waiting at the top of the gate calling for passengers who were travelling onto Kolkata, Kathmandu and Bangkok. We all congregated for a while until everyone arrived and then walked through to international connections. Now I don’t know why we had to wait as we all know how to read either English or Hindi and it doesn’t take rocket science to figure out where to go.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02581.jpg
Security at transit

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02583.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02584.jpg
Impressive duty-free section

Nonetheless after passing through transit security my parents and I entered the duty-free area which was presented in a very nice way. The airport interior on the whole was very impressive for Indian standards (that’s not meant in a bad way by any means) but with the perception of what some people have for India around the world, Delhi Airport is very good. I heard the comparisons to Singapore’s Changi Airport with IGI and I can understand the reasons. If memory serves me correct it was the same company that constructed both airports but what makes it identical for me was the coloured carpet. I swear its an exact match? I wonder how long it will be until we see tears and then tape being stuck on it.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02586.jpg
EK B772 heading back to Dubai

We went upstairs to the food court and sat down with a nice cup of coffee as most of the English passengers travelling onwards to Kathmandu and Bangkok headed straight to Domino’s Pizza and McDonalds which was utterly hilarious! Try something different once in a while I thought to myself.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02587.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02588.jpg

By 12:00 our flight to Kolkata had been given its departure gate allocation; 24A. I managed to get a few more pictures of aircrafts as well as inside the terminal before arriving at the gate and relaxing for a while. I could see an Air India A319 at Gate 24B which would be the flight to Kathmandu today. Our aircraft eventually arrived at 12:45 so it was inevitable that there would be a delay to boarding and during this time, the gate got very busy as this sector of the flight would be packed solid.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02590.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02591.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02592.jpg
Our aircraft that arrived from London Heathrow

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02594.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02595.jpg

F L I G H T D E T A I L S

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02597.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02599.jpg

Date:- Thursday 9th September 2010
Route:- Delhi (DEL) - Kolkata (CCU)
Airline / Flight Number:- Air India / AI 112
Departure (Actual) / Arrival (Actual):- 13:20 (14:10) / 15:30 (16:05)
Aircraft / Reg:- A321-211 / VT-PPF
Class / Seat Number:- Economy / 23A

Boarding for our flight eventually started by 13:10 as my parents and I waited for the majority of the passengers to board before we did. The flight was totally full as the overhead compartments were stuffed with luggage, half of which I’m sure is way too big for hand luggage! By 13:20 we were onboard as I got my window seat with a view of the Kathmandu flight next to us.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02602.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02604.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02605.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02606.jpg
The Kathmandu flight next door to ours

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02607.jpg

Doors were closed at 13:35 and pushback was two minutes later as Captain R K Sinha came over the PA system to apologise for the delay due to the late arrival of the incoming aircraft as well as the local thunderstorms. We slowly made our way to the active runway where I could see the line of domestic flights getting ready to depart.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02608.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02610.jpg

Right above that as you can see were some dark and menacing clouds which looked very ugly. The skies got very dark as a few raindrops started to appear on the window and within a few minutes I was in the middle of my first monsoon shower. Thank heavens I was inside the aircraft and not outside as I would have literally been drenched! The Spicejet B737 before us kicked up a huge amount of water as it thundered down the runway before it was our turn. You could feel the plane going from left to right as the rain was pounding the aircraft.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02611.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02612.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02613.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02614.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02615.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02616.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02617.jpg

At 14:11 it was our turn to take-off as the captain applied full throttles as we took-off into the dark grey skies but funnily enough as soon as well climbed it seemed as if the rain had stopped. How bizarre I thought to myself as we went through the clouds where there wasn’t any turbulence at all!

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02619.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02621.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02622.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02624.jpg

This flight was rather uneventful as was the selection on the IFE screens, so I turned to my trusty I-Pad and played darts for a while. By 14:55 lunch was served which again consisted of chicken and rice which was quite spicy this time. I asked the stewardess for a can of Coke or Sprite to which she replied “sorry sir, but we only have tea and coffee onboard our service”! How odd is that they don’t serve normal drinks?! I settled for some coffee however that wasn’t enough to keep me from falling asleep for forty minutes as my eyes shut.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02626.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02627.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02628.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02629.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02630.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02631.jpg
The River Ganges looking very dry

When I woke up I saw the River Ganges below which had totally dried out. I quickly filled out our landing cards as we started our descent into Kolkata. Soon enough the green fields and densely populated regions came into sight as we landed at 16:05 managing to catch a nice shadow of the A321.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02636.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02638.jpg
The dense housing in and around Kolkata

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02639.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02640.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02642.jpg

The captain slammed on the brakes as we taxied to the international terminal which was relatively busy for Kolkata standards. There was a vast array of flights at the domestic terminal with aircrafts from Jet Lite, Jet Airways, Spicejet, Indian and IndiGo. I had always thought that taking pictures on the tarmac would be difficult however as I stood and snapped away, the police and officials didn’t say a single thing!

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02645.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02646.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02647.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02649.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02650.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02652.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02653.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02655.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02656.jpg

After a long journey from LHR via DEL, we had finally arrived into Kolkata and after clearing immigration got our luggage within five minutes which was quite shocking. It also turns out that there was a lady on our flight from London who had swam across the English Channel as outside the terminal there were news reporters, fans and well wishers playing music and fireworks going off left, right and centre. Funny how it was the English Channel and yet I had heard nothing about it in London.



Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
User currently offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Reply 3, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 15580 times:

RETURN JOURNEY


D A Y O F D E P A R T U R E

Our flight from Kolkata was meant to depart at 10:10, however we didn’t leave until 12:10 and this was worrying as the connection from DEL would be tight. There was excuse after excuse as to why our flight was delayed and eventually when my father and I headed out onto the tarmac I saw the reason why. Instead of being an Air India A321, our aircraft was an Indian Airlines A320 so it was obvious that something went wrong with our original aircraft so a substitute was sent out instead.

F L I G H T D E T A I L S/b]

Date:- [b]Monday 20th September 2010

Route:- Kolkata (CCU) - Delhi (DEL)
Airline / Flight Number:- Air India / AI 111
Departure (Actual) / Arrival (Actual):- 10:10 (12:10) / 12:30 (14:15)
Aircraft / Reg:- A320-231 / VT-ESA
Class / Seat Number:- Economy / 9E

On the return my flight it was only my father and I so I apologise for the lack of pictures as I was helping my father who walks with a walking stick so pictures had to take a back seat. For the Kolkata to Delhi flight, all I will say is a total disgrace! The toilets were utterly disgusting with no toilet rolls and the seats all had masking tape on the back of the seats to keep them from falling apart. This was the first time that I was happy when the flight was over. I shall leave it at that!


C O N N E C T I N G F L I G H T


P R E - B O A R D I N G

Upon arriving at Delhi, all the transit passengers for London, Frankfurt and Abu Dhabi were ushered through as the other aircrafts were being delayed for us. The airport staff who were helping us told us that we had to hurry as the airport would be shut from 15:00 to 16:00 due to runway maintenance. Everybody else started panicking whilst I couldn’t stop laughing as this was the best excuse they could come up with to hurry everyone along! One of the airport terminal managers walked in front of me as I mentioned the funny comment the staff had said to which it even made him chuckle!

Whilst this was going on, my dear old father decided to go to duty-free. It always seems that a trip to India is never quite complete until he gets a few bottles on the return flight. I was actually getting worried as I didn’t want to miss the connecting flight which was already showing ‘Gate Closed’. My father turned around and gave a very horrible look after which I realized that I should keep my mouth shut! LOL! Turns out that he was right as I ran ahead to tell the staff at the gate to wait for my father as he was walking as fast as possible with a walking stick (no member of airport staff offered to help him with the use of a buggy which was disgusting behaviour)!!

F L I G H T D E T A I L S

Date:- Monday 20th September 2010
Route:- Delhi (DEL) - London Heathrow (LHR)
Airline / Flight Number:- Air India / AI 111
Departure (Actual) / Arrival (Actual):- 14:00 (16:10) / 19:00 (20:05)
Aircraft / Reg:- B777-337/ER / VT-ALN
Class / Seat Number:- Economy / 19A

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02943.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02944.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02945.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02946.jpg

My father and I boarded by 15:30 as we were one of last few remaining passengers who arrived. The flight seemed quite empty, as the forward section of Economy Class was packed but the rest of Economy was fairly empty. Again ahead of us in Executive Class there were only two people which makes me wonder how their premium classes perform. Moving on, by 15:40 the doors were shut and we taxied past two idle looking Air India aircrafts probably waiting for their night flights to America to the active runway which was being used for both take-offs and landings.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02948.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02949.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02950.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02951.jpg

There seemed to be quite a queue, again most of which was for domestic flights. All the other London bound flights had taken off on time around two hours prior. Within the space of forty minutes, there are four flights all going to Heathrow with the services being provided by 9W, IT, AI and VS. I’m sure everyone has their own preference as to which they would fly, and for me it would be Jet Airways, however due to connecting times for Kolkata being really bad we always travel with Air India.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02952.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02953.jpg

At 16:10 our aircraft raced down the runway as we took-off into the dark skies of Delhi with me saying goodbye to India yet again and wondering when I would come back. Its funny as I always want to come here and then when I’m here, I always complain about one thing or another. But then I have strong love for India as my family is from there. When I’m there it always bring a smile to my face and to see the different religions, cultures and people is something I find special about India.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02954.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02955.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02957.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02959.jpg

Anyway moving on after getting a bit sentiment, our flight time to London was to be 8 hrs 40 mins during which time I was trying to figure out what to do! After the seat belt signs had been turned off, the passenger sitting in the middle moved to the back of the plane which was good for my father and I as we had more space. I had my treasured window seat as my father had his aisle seat due to his leg problems. As we broke through the clouds it made for some interesting pictures as after thirty minutes we had bright blue skies all around us.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02961.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02962.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02965.jpg


Comfortable headphones for Economy Class

Snacks were handed out as soon as the seat belt signs were turned off which consisted of mixed nuts and a glass of Coke. The cabin crew seemed to be in a rush on this flight as within fifteen minutes they came down the aisle serving us lunch which was the same as usual, however the chicken was very oily and very spicy as well. Not that I’m complaining as I finished it completely before closing the window shutter and falling asleep for around four hours.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02967.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02968.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02970.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02972.jpg

Upon waking up I felt much better than before as I walked up and down the aircraft without taking any pictures as the cabin crew were quite strict. I didn’t have the energy to show them the paper that Vivek had given me as I was too tired. So for the rest of the flight I watched the Bollywood film ‘Karthik Calling Karthik’ and taking numerous pictures from the window of the amazing sunset and colour of the evening sky. The bright red engine looked stunning in the sunset as I caught a glimpse of the moons reflection on the massive wing.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02973.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02975.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02979.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02983.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02989.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02990.jpg

As we flew over France, snacks were handed out consisting of a few sandwiches and a cake. I ate the cake as the sandwiches were horrible and had no taste at all. Never mind I thought, as I would get a sandwich upon landing which would taste better.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02980.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02991.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02992.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02993.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02996.jpg

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC02997.jpg

Our descent seemed to take ages as we flew over the English Channel and into British Airspace which again depressed me as it always does. It was cloudy as normal over the UK as we went lower and lower with plenty of other aircrafts visible in the holding pattern. We didn’t circle over London which was good to see as we landed at 20:08; just over an hour late as the captain slammed on the brakes to get to the right turning off the runway as we headed to Terminal 3. We parked up on stand next to an Air China A332 heading off to Beijing as we disembarked and thanked the cabin crew. It was good to be back home. The one thing I wasn’t happy with was that as it was night time, I couldn’t take a picture of the aircraft which is the one thing I had wanted to do. Oh well maybe next time?!

Immigration was empty for the UK and European lanes as my father and I headed down to collect our luggage which only took fifteen minutes. We headed out to the departures forecourt where we met our driver and I managed to finish the journey off with a picture of Terminal 3 lit up brightly at night.

http://i800.photobucket.com/albums/yy286/sdas24/India%20Sept%202010/DSC03001.jpg

V E R D I C T

Air India in my eyes has pulled their socks up a lot compared to three or four years ago when hardly anyone wanted to travel with them. With their new aircraft and better timings they are slowly getting better but only time will tell how they get on as they get pressurized from rival airlines like Jet Airways and Kingfisher. The leg space in Economy was much better than I had expected as the new generation seats makes it more comfortable. If only their information to the passengers at Kolkata had been better then I would have given them a higher rating but this as always has let them down. My rating would be 6.5/10.

Sandeep (AI151)



Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5074 posts, RR: 55
Reply 4, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 15058 times:

Great report. I personally think AI has an excellent product - though, their ground handling at some airports in India leaves a little to be desired. It will take a while to change the premium perception, but it will happen. I think you're one of the first to have a bad experience with AI food in Y (granted, it was only one sandwich) ... as I have found their catering to be one of the best in the world in all cabins.

Thanks for writing.

Saludos,
A.



Live, and let live.
User currently offlinevivekman2006 From India, joined May 2006, 530 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 14948 times:

NIce TR AI 151!

The LHR-DEL-LHR flights look pretty good in terms of both product & service.

It was a shame that AI deployed one of its old IC A320s on the CCU-DEL leg.

Most importantly, your international-domestic transfer (although you were transferring only to an AI international connector flight) was handled quite well. Hopefully this should continue with the true intl-domestic and domestic-intl transfers when domestic ops shift to T3.

- Vivek


User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5074 posts, RR: 55
Reply 6, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 14936 times:

Quoting vivekman2006 (Reply 5):

Most importantly, your international-domestic transfer (although you were transferring only to an AI international connector flight) was handled quite well. Hopefully this should continue with the true intl-domestic and domestic-intl transfers when domestic ops shift to T3.

- Vivek

= You forgot the D-D transfer ... actually, I am NOT looking forward to having my domestic flight dock at the furthest gate ... and then my international one at the other end. Knowing my luck, it is a distinct possibility!

Saludos,
A.

PS: Forgot to post earlier ... but I too have noticed the lack of direction to lounge A  Smile.

[Edited 2010-10-07 21:49:14]


Live, and let live.
User currently offlineoa260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 26849 posts, RR: 58
Reply 7, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 14648 times:

Very nice report on Air India, have to say Id love to try them out as its been a few years since I flew them . I have to say I love their livery on the A320's certainly suits it and one of my favs.

Food looks ideal to me but then again I could eat curry 24/7   Nice warm interiors and good size IFE screen.

Thanks for the great report, one of the best Ive seen on AI recently.


Happy flying

OA260  


User currently onlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6500 posts, RR: 55
Reply 8, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 3 days ago) and read 14540 times:

Hi Sandeep!

Very nice report with nice pictures! Air India seems very nice which is also my experience with them. Too bad you were on an older IC aircraft on the return but it seems to have been a last minute substitution. Nice big PTV on the 321 to CCU!! Nice to hear that transfer at the new DEL terminal 3 went smooth even though your flights were late......

Thanks!

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Reply 9, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 14289 times:

Hi guys, thanks for you replies so far...

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 4):
Great report.

Thanks Alex

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 4):
I think you're one of the first to have a bad experience with AI food in Y (granted, it was only one sandwich) ... as I have found their catering to be one of the best in the world in all cabins.

The main meals were excellent but its the snacks that were very bad indeed. In general it was of a good standard.

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 6):
PS: Forgot to post earlier ... but I too have noticed the lack of direction to lounge A  .

Funny you mention this as it wasn't what I was thinking about. LOL! If you look closely its within one of airlines that may have moved terminals.

Hi Vivek, thanks for the paperwork

Quoting vivekman2006 (Reply 5):
It was a shame that AI deployed one of its old IC A320s on the CCU-DEL leg.

It wasn't one of the best experiences I've had on an aircraft.

Quoting vivekman2006 (Reply 5):
Most importantly, your international-domestic transfer (although you were transferring only to an AI international connector flight) was handled quite well.

I was shocked at this as well. Compared to how it was in T2 back in Feb, the T3 experience was far better than I had expected.

Quoting oa260 (Reply 7):
Very nice report on Air India, have to say Id love to try them out as its been a few years since I flew them . I have to say I love their livery on the A320's certainly suits it and one of my favs.

I agree that the AI livery looks great. I love the colours on the engine as well.

Quoting oa260 (Reply 7):
Thanks for the great report, one of the best Ive seen on AI recently.

Thanks for you kind comments

Quoting The777Man (Reply 8):
Nice to hear that transfer at the new DEL terminal 3 went smooth even though your flights were late......

Hi Lars I was glad this was the case as well. It was one of things I was worrying about especially since the last time. Hopefully as the terminal grows, things will get easier.

Sandeep (AI151)



Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
User currently offlineojas From India, joined Mar 2008, 2957 posts, RR: 24
Reply 10, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 14035 times:

Hi Sandeep

Brilliant TR, I could not resist noticing the irony of your handle on A.net and the sector you have reported   . AI 151 CCU - LHR n/s.


Quoting AI151 (Reply 1):
Dinner consisted of rice, chana (cottage cheese), some vegetables and also chicken which came separately which was a good thought as I didn’t want oil all over my food.

Chana is actually chick pea; cottage cheese is paneer.

Quoting AI151 (Reply 2):
. Now I don’t know why we had to wait as we all know how to read either English or Hindi and it doesn’t take rocket science to figure out where to go.

Trust me, even with all those signs people still get lost.

Quoting AI151 (Reply 2):
I asked the stewardess for a can of Coke or Sprite to which she replied “sorry sir, but we only have tea and coffee onboard our service”! How odd is that they don’t serve normal drinks?! I

Very odd, usually such requests on my AI flights are addressed promptly.

Quoting AI151 (Reply 3):
whilst I couldn’t stop laughing as this was the best excuse they could come up with to hurry everyone along!

LOL, probably the desi crowd don't buy normal excuses!

Thanks for sharing.



A lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep
User currently offlinelychemsa From United States of America, joined Oct 2009, 1164 posts, RR: 3
Reply 11, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 13833 times:

Compared to our US airlines like Continental etc I would rate them a 10. Fantastic to offer 33" legroom and food looks great.

User currently offlineakhmad From Netherlands, joined Sep 2005, 2438 posts, RR: 53
Reply 12, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 13719 times:

Hi Sandeep,

I was pleasanty surprised to see your report popping up. I have been waiting for it since you told me that you would be flying AI. What has caught my attention immediately is the array of high quality pictures you have made along the trip. Well done!

The Y cabin looked fresh and immaculate with great legroom too. Pity about your PTV not being working at the beginning and that on a two month old plane.You seemed to have a nice dinner. The breakfast looked rather disappointing though. I was expecting something more substantial and Indian.

Excellent photos of Terminal 3!

Quoting AI151 (Reply 1):
however I have noticed that Indians don’t seem to have that much patience as everybody got up and then when they showed their boarding cards to the staff, they got turned back and were told to wait until their row number was called. This didn’t happen once, but it seemed more people were coming back than going on board which made me laugh!

Hilarious!

Quoting AI151 (Reply 1):
There wasn’t that much traffic and this time it seemed we by passed all the other planes waiting to take-off unlike my flight with Kuwait Airways.

It sounds familiar. AI B77W by passed our AF plane too last July. 


Quoting AI151 (Reply 2):
I had always thought that taking pictures on the tarmac would be difficult however as I stood and snapped away, the police and officials didn’t say a single thing!

Good to know that. Too bad the cabin crew on the return flight thought otherwise.

Thanks for sharing. Really enjoyable report!

Cheers,
Suryo



Friends forever
User currently offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Reply 13, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 13614 times:

Hi Ojas, thanks for the comments.

Quoting ojas (Reply 10):
Brilliant TR, I could not resist noticing the irony of your handle on A.net and the sector you have reported   . AI 151 CCU - LHR n/s.

You may have been the first to spot this. It's a shame AI don't do the direct flight as it would have been a bit more special.

Quoting ojas (Reply 10):
Chana is actually chick pea; cottage cheese is paneer.

LOL! Apologies, my mother said in Bengali its cottage cheese that's why.

Quoting ojas (Reply 10):
LOL, probably the desi crowd don't buy normal excuses!

It was without a shadow of a doubt the funniest excuse I have heard to this date.

Lychemsa,

Quoting lychemsa (Reply 11):
Compared to our US airlines like Continental etc I would rate them a 10. Fantastic to offer 33" legroom and food looks great.

Thanks for reading. I would rate AI higher than most US airlines as well but after travelling with Air India over such a long period of time I have learned that they are finally getting better at their service which up to 3 years ago was abysmal.

Hi Suryo,

Quoting akhmad (Reply 12):
I was pleasanty surprised to see your report popping up. I have been waiting for it since you told me that you would be flying AI. What has caught my attention immediately is the array of high quality pictures you have made along the trip. Well done!

Thanks for the kind comments regarding the pictures. The first one was inspired by a few that Roni has done with his TR's so I thought I'd give it a go.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 12):
Excellent photos of Terminal 3!

Gracias

Quoting akhmad (Reply 12):
AI B77W by passed our AF plane too last July. 

Good to see AI getting priority over AF. Chak De India...! LOL!

Sandeep (AI151)



Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
User currently offlineojas From India, joined Mar 2008, 2957 posts, RR: 24
Reply 14, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 13577 times:

Quoting AI151 (Reply 13):
It's a shame AI don't do the direct flight as it would have been a bit more special.

That flight was a commercial disaster to start with, but in 2004 it was done so to please the Left parties who were supporting the UPA - 1Govt. (Read Brinda and Prakash). I had myself seen Praful Patel's Rajya Sabha speech the day he announced it. However CCU-DEL-LHR is a good compromise measure.



A lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep
User currently offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Reply 15, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 13564 times:

Quoting ojas (Reply 14):
That flight was a commercial disaster to start with, but in 2004 it was done so to please the Left parties who were supporting the UPA - 1Govt. (Read Brinda and Prakash). I had myself seen Praful Patel's Rajya Sabha speech the day he announced it. However CCU-DEL-LHR is a good compromise measure.

I know it was a total disaster. Twice I went on that flight in 2005 and the loads were so poor on the outbound flight to CCU. But on the return I don't think there were enough passengers to even warrant a flight as it got cancelled and we got re-routed via Mumbai. Not that I was complaining as I got to sit in the Upper Deck of AI's B744.

Now if only 9W would offer something like that, I have a feeling that a lot of people would switch the allegiance over to them straight away. I'm just glad that there's at least one option that doesn't involve Emirates.

Sandeep (AI151)



Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
User currently offlineojas From India, joined Mar 2008, 2957 posts, RR: 24
Reply 16, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 13536 times:

Quoting AI151 (Reply 15):
Now if only 9W would offer something like that, I have a feeling that a lot of people would switch the allegiance over to them straight away. I'm just glad that there's at least one option that doesn't involve Emirates.

With the DEL T3 functional completely from IATA winter 2010, 9W and IT too will become a pleasant option via DEL. Even TG is a good option if they offer a decent fare.



A lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep
User currently offlineLH4116 From Sweden, joined Aug 2007, 1710 posts, RR: 14
Reply 17, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 13346 times:

Good evening Sandeep, finally got some time over to have a look at your report. It was a very nice one!  

By the looks of it LHR's Terminal 3 look like a dark and depressing place to me. I don't like the low ceiling and the fluorescent lights. Are there any plans for giving the terminal a facelift?

Your flights on AI long haul looked pretty nice. The seats looked pretty nice and comfortable, IFE screen looked pretty big too. Interesting that you went for the iPad instead 
The food looked really nice to. Interesting to see them serving such big portions on the short flight as well, but I guess it is India after all   One thing that struck me was how tiny the 2nd meal was. Since it was an Indian airline one would have expected them to serve a proper 2nd meal, and not just a lighter snack. Is this something they've recently introduced?

Thanks for sharing, and I hope to see more from you!
//Jonas



SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
User currently offlineFLIEGER67 From France, joined Sep 2003, 5133 posts, RR: 55
Reply 18, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 13285 times:

Hi, Sandeep,

finally time now, after some more flights yesterday, to follow you´re new story.
Let me say, well done, a good arrangement of pictures and story details.
Air India looks like much better than expected and also the new terminal at Delhi,
a nice impression.
Interesting to see all that domestic flights at CCU.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)



Next: How to deliver a present in style!.
User currently offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Reply 19, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 13186 times:

Quoting ojas (Reply 16):
With the DEL T3 functional completely from IATA winter 2010, 9W and IT too will become a pleasant option via DEL.

I suppose that won't be an issue. The main problem is that the connecting times are atrocious. You have to spend a whole day in either Delhi or Mumbai before travelling onto Kolkata and this is probably one of the reasons why people turn to Air India for this routing.

Hi Jonas,

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 17):
By the looks of it LHR's Terminal 3 look like a dark and depressing place to me. I don't like the low ceiling and the fluorescent lights. Are there any plans for giving the terminal a facelift?

I'm pretty sure that T3 has already had its facelift and this is the end product.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 17):
One thing that struck me was how tiny the 2nd meal was. Since it was an Indian airline one would have expected them to serve a proper 2nd meal, and not just a lighter snack. Is this something they've recently introduced?

This is something that got to me as well, the main meal was very filling but the 2nd was hardly edible for me. I know its meant to be a snack but I'm sure they could have done better. When I flew back in Jan/Feb it was the same story.

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 18):
Let me say, well done, a good arrangement of pictures and story details.

Thanks for the comment Markus

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 18):
Interesting to see all that domestic flights at CCU.

You're guaranteed of seeing plenty of domestic flights at CCU everyday compared to international ones.

Sandeep (AI151)



Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
User currently offlineojas From India, joined Mar 2008, 2957 posts, RR: 24
Reply 20, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 12875 times:

Quoting AI151 (Reply 19):
The main problem is that the connecting times are atrocious. You have to spend a whole day in either Delhi or Mumbai before travelling onto Kolkata and this is probably one of the reasons why people turn to Air India for this routing.

You're right, LHR => CCU connections seem to be bad, however CCU => LHR connections are good; it stands true for both 9W, IT. Now that BA code shares on IT, yet BA offers a connection time of 5 hours both ways.

I guess from the connections point of view, your best options from LHR - CCU would be AI, EK and LH.



A lion does not concern himself with the opinions of the sheep
User currently offlineinitious From Singapore, joined Dec 2008, 1053 posts, RR: 15
Reply 21, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 12830 times:

Hey Sandeep, thanks for yet another wonderful report! I must say this report definitely suits your a.net name.

Quoting AI151 (Reply 1):
I have noticed that Indians don’t seem to have that much patience as everybody got up and then when they showed their boarding cards to the staff, they got turned back and were told to wait until their row number was called.

That happens in China too. During my June trip to Shantou, no row numbers or priority boarding for business class. Everyone just rushed to the gate. I joined in the fun too. Lol! While boarding my PVG-BKK flight there wasn't any priority boarding for J/F Pax at the gate too. Makes me wonder if China actually emphasizes on any priority boarding or not.

Quoting AI151 (Reply 1):
From my seat I could see the purple lighting from inside the Oman Air aircraft in the Business Class section. I hope to fly with them one day soon.

You could fly WY in J from LHR-MCT-BKK/KUL and come down to SIN. Lol. =p Their J class seems wonderful. More like first class!

Quoting AI151 (Reply 1):
Typical humour followed as I laughed a bit too loud when my mother looked over at me and told me to bring the volume down.

You reminded me of a certain guy I saw while on my Malaysia trip. Albeit not taking any flights, we had the Business Class like seat with a PTV. The guy at the front row laughed sooo loudly!

Quoting AI151 (Reply 1):
So imagine my amazement in reading the following information below only an hour after take-off from London.

Hmm.. 7000 miles an hour? Concorde has an opponent now..

Quoting AI151 (Reply 3):
The toilets were utterly disgusting with no toilet rolls and the seats all had masking tape on the back of the seats to keep them from falling apart.

Wow, I wouldn't want to get on a plane like that!

Looking forward to more great reports in the future. Please forgive me for this late comment as I was too lethargic after work last evening lol.

Daniel



One way I will fly around the world!
User currently offlineflightsimboy From Canada, joined Sep 2005, 1235 posts, RR: 5
Reply 22, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 12775 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

AI's 773ERs are a sheer delight to the eye! And the product within seems very comfortable. However I've seen pics of the F class and the vibrancy of the seat colours in Y, blend into a soothing calm of beige in First. I hope I am not mistaking this for another airline lol. However the FA uniforms are atrocious if I can term them as such! They used to have much nicer uniforms. Seen them at Toronto Pearson and they look like a zebra mated with a barber's pole, all those stripes with the terrible colours.

The food looks great and sufficient. It was a nice idea to pack the curry seperately.

That A330 looks gorgeous. Well for that matter the AI livery looks great on any aircraft!

Great report.


User currently offlineBA319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8500 posts, RR: 55
Reply 23, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 2 days ago) and read 12634 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Nice report & pictures Sandeep, thanks for sharing your AI flights with us.


Quoting AI151 (Thread starter):
I managed to get an Economy Class ticket for £377 travelling with Air India on the routing LHR-DEL-CCU-DEL-LHR. Considering the distance and prices of other airlines like EK and LH which were offering in excess of £500, I thought I got a very good deal.

- Sounds like a steal to me.

Quoting AI151 (Reply 1):
As per usual whenever I travel with my parents, I always leave my packing till the last moment which infuriates my mother

- Is this something you do on purpose?  
Quoting AI151 (Thread starter):
most of the English passengers travelling onwards to Kathmandu and Bangkok headed straight to Domino’s Pizza and McDonalds which was utterly hilarious! Try something different once in a while I thought to myself.

- Tell me about it, try something different people!

Bar the poor sandwich you had, catering and portions look good.

Cheers

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 offlineAI151 From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2009, 303 posts, RR: 16
Reply 24, posted (3 years 9 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 12561 times:

Quoting ojas (Reply 20):
I guess from the connections point of view, your best options from LHR - CCU would be AI, EK and LH.

Funny you say that as it was my comments that made my parents fly with AI. EK is good is Business Class but their Economy leg space is no good for my father and I. I won't even comment on LH and what they offer.

Quoting initious (Reply 21):
Hey Sandeep, thanks for yet another wonderful report! I must say this report definitely suits your a.net name.

Thanks Daniel.

Quoting initious (Reply 21):
You could fly WY in J from LHR-MCT-BKK/KUL and come down to SIN. Lol. =p Their J class seems wonderful. More like first class!

Check out my status on FB and you might get a clue of the routing I might take, depending on what my father says.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 22):
I hope I am not mistaking this for another airline lol. However the FA uniforms are atrocious if I can term them as such! They used to have much nicer uniforms. Seen them at Toronto Pearson and they look like a zebra mated with a barber's pole, all those stripes with the terrible colours.

No your not mistaking it with another airline, its Air India....LOL! And as for the uniforms, I agree with you 110%. With the new aircrafts and interiors surely AI could have given their crew a better taste in uniform. For some of the stewardesses it wasn't flattering on them at all. (the good ol' aunties of AI)

Quoting BA319-131 (Reply 23):
Is this something you do on purpose?

Funnily enough Mark it isn't. If I travel by myself, normally I pack the day before but when travelling with my parents I always leave it till the last minute.

Sandeep (AI151)



Modern Vision. Timeless Traditions...
25 initious : Interesting.. Saudi Arabian Airlines! You might get to savour their Boeing 747-300 lol.
26 AI151 : Unfortunately not, looks like B777 on both legs to and from London. Never fear as I'm looking out for more choices. Sandeep (AI151)
27 AI151 : Forgot to comment on this, but if its in T3 by the time you travel, you won't have a problem. The signs are well posted and with the aid of moving wa
28 Aeri28 : absolutely loved reading this. thanks for sharing.
29 AI151 : thanks for your kind comments. Sandeep (AI151)
30 Post contains images PlaneHunter : Hi Sandeep, great report with many nice pictures, AI's new long-haul product looks very good. I really need to try their 777s one day. The airshow is
31 AI151 : Hi PH, That's well spotted as well, but also if you look closely you will see that Kuwait Airways don't operate from T3 anymore. They didn't tell me t
Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic Flying The 'NEW' Maharaja? AI In Y To CCU
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...
The New DL Leaves Much To Be Desired posted Mon Jul 5 2010 10:02:03 by AussieItaliano
Flying The New Delta Air Lines--772LR Included posted Sun Feb 28 2010 20:56:37 by atrude777
MUC - VIE From The New Terminal T2 In Munich posted Sun Jun 29 2003 19:42:26 by LH738
Flying The Kangaroo To HKG In Premium posted Sun Apr 4 2010 14:21:32 by AI151
Daytrip To The Isle Of Man: Flying The Dornier 228 posted Wed Aug 25 2010 15:45:52 by EHRD
Kingfisher DXB-DEL In Y Plus The New T3 At DEL posted Sat Aug 7 2010 17:25:03 by justbala
Flying The Eskimo To Hawaii Part 3 (finally) posted Fri Jul 30 2010 22:44:36 by coopdogyo
Flying The Eskimo To Hawaii Part 2 posted Sat Jul 10 2010 00:37:52 by coopdogyo
Flying The Eskimo To Hawaii Part 1 posted Fri Jul 9 2010 13:34:55 by coopdogyo
Upping The Game: On Etihad In J & New F posted Tue Feb 9 2010 08:28:05 by airpearl
Flying The King: SFO-FRA(-BUD) With Lufthansa In Y posted Mon Oct 31 2011 20:28:15 by MarcoPoloWorld
Flying "the NON Stop " - JFK - DEL On AI posted Thu Sep 1 2011 12:43:27 by justbala

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format