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¡Hola Barcelona! Flying Irish With FR, EI, RE-pics  
User currently offlineAmricanShamrok From Ireland, joined May 2008, 2885 posts, RR: 0
Posted (3 years 2 months 18 hours ago) and read 10039 times:

FR4441: Kerry Airport (KIR) – Dublin Airport (DUB)
EI564: Dublin Airport (DUB) – Barcelona Airport (BCN)

FR9335: Girona-Costa Brava Airport (GRO) – Bristol Airport (BRS)
RE3655: Bristol Airport (BRS) – Shannon Airport (SNN)


It was time for a holiday. College had just finished for the year and I wanted to accelerate my exploration of Europe following on from my tour of London last year. So far I’d flown 65 flights and over 120,000 miles (mostly travelling between Ireland and Chicago) in my 20 year lifetime and I now want to broaden my horizons. With a €250 Aer Lingus voucher I’d received from my parents for Christmas it was the perfect opportunity.

I pressured a friend into joining me and narrowed down my list to four cities: Paris, Barcelona, Rome and Madrid. Because my travelling companion was a cheapskate she was to travel on the cheapest route possible while I would spend some of my Aer Lingus voucher no matter what. After weeks of price-checking, Barcelona became the most attractive destination fare-wise and so with a spur-of-the-moment booking I was to fly Shannon-London/Gatwick-Barcelona and Girona-Bristol-Shannon in order to use some of my EI voucher (whilst keeping a nice reserve for a rainy day) and keep true to my policy of never taking an O&D trip from Dublin or Cork 

EasyJet’s website kept freezing just before I reached the booking page so they lost a customer as time was of the essence. Plan B was initiated with the route Kerry-Dublin-Barcelona – which to my favour worked out cheaper. This would be my first ever trip using an Irish passport after 20 years of getting around on a US one.

I set out for Kerry Airport at 09:45 on Saturday morning, the 21st May. With the Castleisland bypass now complete, the airport is now accessible from my house in west Limerick in 40 minutes. I arrived about 10:25 for my 11:35 departure to DUB.

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Only four departures from KIR today; a big step down from last summer with up to 12 departures on a Saturday

To my surprise, there was a big crowd in the check-in hall with many checking in bags to Dublin. It looked like a lot of my fellow passengers would be taking connecting flights like myself.

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My friend would be flying directly from DUB to GRO with Ryanair and stayed in Dublin the night before. I would meet her at Dublin Airport for lunch before going on our separate flights.

Security opened at 10:45 and all 31 passengers travelling today formed an orderly queue. I was at Gate 1 in a matter of minutes.

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A private Airbus A318 parked at Gate 2 registered 9H-AFL

There is a small Duty Free-like shop across from the gates selling fragrances, alcohol and cigarettes as well as gifts and souvenirs.

All passengers sat and watched as the inbound aircraft, EI-EFM arrived from Dublin just after 11:10 to take us back on flight FR4441. Just after this, two KIR staff approached the podium and made a boarding announcement asking all Priority passengers to board in the Priority Q and other passengers to board in the regular one. There were no Priority passengers. There is no need for a microphone in the boarding “room” of this small airport. Just saying…

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I was onboard at 11:20 and sat in the middle of the aircraft so there would be no rush when leaving. Most other passengers sat up front. The actual load factor for this flight was 31/189 or 16%. FR are no longer being subsidised by the Irish government to operate this route; they are doing so for 100% commercial reasons – or so they say.

While we were boarding, the A318 across from us began taxiing and minutes later took off on Runway 08.

Date Saturday, 21st May 2011
Flight FR4441
Aircraft Boeing 737-8AS
Tail No. EI-EFM
Aircraft Name
Scheduled Departure 11:35 IST
Actual Departure 11:38 IST
Departure Terminal & Gate Gate 1
Departure Taxi Route A, RWY27, RWY08
Weather at Departure Overcast, light rain
Scheduled Arrival 12:25 IST
Actual Arrival 12:24 IST
Arrival Taxi Route (N/A)
Weather at Arrival Overcast, winds SSW
Class
Seat No. 23A
Captain Glenn Dowling
First Officer (N/A)
Cabin Manager Katherina
Actual Flight Time 46 minutes

At 11:25, Captain Glenn Dowling introduced himself and gave details of the short flight. The door was closed (only Door 1L was used) at 11:29 and the safety demo was given by the two of the three cabin crew. The engines were started at 11:35, followed by taxi at 11:38. No pushback due to the position the aircraft was parked in. We taxiied to RWY08 via Taxiway A and RWY27/08 before making a 180° turn. We were airborne at 11:42 after a short takeoff run.

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Nearly 10 minutes after takeoff the engine power was reduced and we reached our cruising altitude of 23,000 feet (as the captain would later inform us). By this time the cabin crew were already well into their onboard service selling the usual newspapers, sandwiches, drinks, hot food and scratchcards. The aircraft never got above the clouds but it did get brighter outside. At 12:01 the captain greeted us again giving us details of our descent into Dublin and alerted us to some interesting movements on the airfield ahead of US President Barack Obama’s visit to Ireland on Monday.

The descent began immediately after this and at 12:08 the first officer gave his “10 minutes to landing” call. The flight was generally very smooth with no turbulence at all. We made a southerly approach into Dublin, out over the Irish Sea from Co. Wicklow and lined up for Runway 28 just north of Howth.

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We slammed onto the runway at 12:17. The first thing I noticed when we exited the runway was the large Garda presence in the actual airfield as well as surrounding it. Obama’s four helicopters were parked near the control tower:

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There were also two huge US Airforce planes on the ground – the names of which escape me.

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We parked at Terminal 1, Gate 110 at 12:24, one minute ahead of schedule. The cabin crew for this flight were all smiling throughout and seemed very friendly.

I made the long trek to the Garda National Immigration Bureau desks where the officer didn’t even look at my passport when I passed through. Must’ve known it was a domestic flight arriving.

I was only carrying hand baggage so there was no baggage claim for me. I met my friend for lunch at McDonalds and did a bit of Planespotting at The Eating Place before bidding her farewell as she went off to catch her 15:05 Ryanair flight to Girona.

The runway configuration had now changed and 16 was in use. Heavier aircraft still used 28 for takeoffs though.

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Etihad Airways flight EY41 arriving from Abu Dhabi

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Flybe flight BE303 arriving from Exeter

I decided to go over to Terminal 2 then to print my boarding pass for my onward flight to BCN. I prefer a “real” one as opposed to one printed off at home where possible. I went through security straight away and browsed around the shops.

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My boarding gate was 422. I hope EI are working on a US-style gate monitor system. The ones they’re using now are very temporary-looking.

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Most of the Pier E airbridges have EI branding and I even saw the EY A332 using one as well as a Monarch Airlines A321 at Terminal 1, Pier B which also have a few EI-branded airbridges.

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Entrance to the US Preclearance section

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My flight to BCN would be aboard St Malachy or EI-EDS, an A320 with slightly different seats to standard EI ones. This is because EI took delivery of them after Iberia deferred their order a couple of years back.

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Tails of a Lufthansa A320 that would later depart for Munich, a CityJet Avro RJ85, a Monarch A321, a US Airways 752 and a Ryanair 73H

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US President’s helicopters ahead of the state visit to Ireland

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Shortly before 18:00 a gate agent appeared and starting fiddling with her computer at the podium. Five minutes later boarding was called for those seated towards the back of the aircraft. The boarding announcement was a standardised one read out from a piece of paper.

I was one of the first on board at 18:10.

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Date Saturday, 21st May 2011
Flight EI564
Aircraft Airbus A320-211
Tail No. EI-EDS
Aircraft Name St Malachy/Maolmhaodhog
Scheduled Departure 18:30 IST
Actual Departure 18:28 IST
Departure Terminal & Gate Terminal 2, Gate 422
Departure Taxi Route Apron, Link 5, F, D3, RWY16
Weather at Departure Broken cloud, winds S
Scheduled Arrival 21:55 CET
Actual Arrival 21:43 CET
Arrival Taxi Route (N/A)
Weather at Arrival Scattered cloud, winds W
Class Economy
Seat No. 26A
Captain Keith Reid
First Officer Mark Roche
Cabin Manager (N/A)
Actual Flight Time 2 hours, 15 minutes

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EI-EDS was delivered to EI on 13th February 2009 and is one of two A320s that do not incorporate the standard EI A320 cabin. These two aircraft were originally destined for Iberia and were manufactured with IB Recaro seats. IB deferred the order at short notice and EI took delivery of them.

Anyway, as I took my seat the cabin crew announced that as the aircraft was being refuelled, seatbelts should not be fastened and exits should be kept clear. It didn’t take long to board the aircraft; the load was disappointing with an estimated load factor of 50%. EI fly twice daily on DUB-BCN and thrice weekly ORK-BCN.

I had the full row to myself but had the misfortune of families with young children sitting both in front of me and behind me. When one baby stopped crying, the other started and this continued for the whole flight. But I didn’t mind; I was looking forward to what awaited me during my few days in Barcelona.

Before we departed, the crew asked us to take our seats for a headcount. At 18:20, Captain Keith Reid gave his introductory welcome and flight briefing. Minutes later the safety demo was undertaken by cabin crew with a recorded version played in Spanish (Catalan?) afterwards.

Pushback was at 18:28 but was interrupted by a company A320 taxiing behind. We pulled in again to let it go.

After a short queue on the taxiway short of Runway 16, we were airborne at 18:40. Turbulence was quite strong on takeoff.

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30 minutes into the flight the SkyCafé service was offered. I got a ham and cheese bloomer and a can of Coke for a nicely inflated price to what I’d pay for it in a shop. It was tasty enough though in fairness. Cabin crew, I have to say, were not much to write home about. They didn’t really engage with passengers and barely a smile during my encounter with two of them getting my food.

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It gradually got darker as the flight continued south.

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At 19:39 IST, the cabin crew announced the latest score of the Heineken Cup Final (Leinster v. Northampton) with Leinster well ahead. This was met by a strong applause from fellow passengers. I was impartial being a Munster man myself.

At 21:11 CET, First Officer Mark Roche gave his (very detailed) briefing on descent and thanked us for flying with EI. We would approach BCN from the northeast, flying out over the Mediterranean to land on Runway 25R 30 minutes later.

The descent and approach was smooth. It was nearly pitch dark at this stage so the picture quality is not worth uploading. We landed at 21:40 on the dot and were on-stand at Terminal 2, Gate E1 three minutes later. On the ground I spotted Air France and British Airways A320s. 12 minutes early into Barcelona, the actual flight time was two hours and fifteen minutes.

We were the only flight arriving at the time and the second-last arrival into T2 that night with only a flight from Málaga coming after us. As a result only one passport control desk was open. I was outside the terminal waiting for a bus to the city centre within minutes.

The bus from BCN to Plaça de Catalunya took about 20 minutes and cost €5.30. I met up with my friend who had earlier arrived into GRO. She was accompanied with 11 other friends who are teaching English in Spain as part of their college degrees. We wasted no time in pub-crawling and later, clubbing, and ended up pulling an all-nighter – not getting to bed until 09:30 the next morning.

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On the roof of Club Catwalk

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Dawn approaching…

After a great first night in Barcelona, we all got the metro back to Santa Susanna (about 90 minutes north of the city) where our travelling party were temporarily resident for the few months.

Santa Susanna

Some pictures from the trip:
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The temperatures were uninterrupted in the mid-20s (Celsius) for the full four days.

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Barcelona is a truly remarkable city. I’ll definitely be back again some day.

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We also visited Port Aventura south of the city.

So after the fantastic four days it was time to head for home again. I was up at 05:00 on the 24th to catch a taxi at 05:30 for Girona-Costa Brava Airport; a 30 minute drive from Santa Susanna. It was €50 but my options were very limited. Because of my tight connection at BRS, I printed my EI boarding pass at an internet café in Barca the day before.

Now at the time there were fears of cancellations because of the Grímsvötn eruption in Iceland. Many flights between Ireland and Scotland had been cancelled the day before when I checked so the first thing I did when I got to Girona was check to see if there were any cancellations.

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Only one cancellation – Bremen, Germany

Girona isn’t a big airport. I’d put it on the same scale as SNN.

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Most flights out of GRO are operated by FR which operates its third-largest base here. Huge crowds of (mostly British) travellers congregated in a long line stretching nearly from the FR desk to the exit shortly after I arrived. I used this opportunity to clear security upstairs before the rush. There was just one aircraft on the ground outside; Ryanair flight FR6901 getting ready for departure to Brussels/Charleroi:

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Transavia.com 737-800 landing on Runway 20 as flight HV5067 from Rotterdam/The Hague

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For an airport of its size, GRO offers a fine selection of retail and dining options

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It wasn’t long before Gate 1 appeared on the monitors for the BRS flight so I proceeded to it. The gate area was closed though as all passengers had to have their passports cleared by immigration authorities before entering so most started queuing. Knowing full well the inbound aircraft wouldn’t be landing for 20 minutes I chose to walk around a bit more.

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When I saw the two policemen heading towards the passport control booths at the gate I decided to turn back and get in line. The officer addressed me by name and wished me a pleasant flight after looking at my passport.

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Sure enough, the inbound aircraft landed from BRS about 15 minutes late. The ground staff were in a rush to get everyone out as soon as possible so we were escorted outside onto the tarmac to wait for the incoming passengers to disembark. I was one of the first in line due to my Priority Boarding pass.

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Our aircraft displaying “Communitat Valenciana” stickers

We were standing in the heat on the tarmac (which was nice) for about five minutes before being taken to the aircraft steps after all the inbound passengers had gone. Another wait on the steps.

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EI-EMA going to EMA!

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Waiting for the cabin crew to let us onboard

I was onboard at 10:14 CET and chose to sit in 5F for a swift exit on arrival as I would only have 70 minutes of connection time assuming both flights were on schedule.

Date Wednesday, 25th May 2011
Flight FR9335
Aircraft Boeing 737-8AS
Tail No. EI-EKV
Aircraft Name Communitat Valenciana
Scheduled Departure 10:15 CET
Actual Departure 10:27 CET
Departure Terminal & Gate Gate 1
Departure Taxi Route Apron, G-4, T-5, E1, RWY20
Weather at Departure Clear skies, light winds
Scheduled Arrival 11:25 WET
Actual Arrival 11:18 WET
Arrival Taxi Route RWY27, G3, G4, Apron
Weather at Arrival Mostly sunny, winds W
Class
Seat No. 5F
Captain Joel Young
First Officer Oliver Doyle
Cabin Manager (N/A)
Actual Flight Time 1 hour, 51 minutes

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After the usual captain’s welcome and the cabin crew demo in English and Spanish, we were ready to roll. Judging by their accents, the captain was English and the first officer (referred to as a “senior first officer” by Capt. Young) was Irish.

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We stopped short of the runway to let yet another FR 738 land and then we were on our way, climbing to 33,000 feet that would take us over western France and the English Channel before descending into Bristol.

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Catalonian countryside

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GRO

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The flight was generally very smooth with nothing of major spectacle to report. The flight was close to full – my estimated load factor stands at 85-90%.

Descent began before I knew it shortly after making landfall over southwest England.

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Touchdown on Runway 27 took place at 11:14 WET and we were on stand at Gate 11 four minutes later.

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Air France flight A52172 preparing to depart back to Paris – operated by an Airlinair ATR

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My bird on stand after disembarking – it would depart again in 25 minutes to Béziers, France as flight FR6022

I asked a groundstaff agent on disembarking if I could go directly to the gate for my flight to Shannon and showed her my onward boarding pass. She said I’d have to go through immigration and security first. Worth a try; I wasn’t too concerned anyway because I had just over an hour.

Passport control was a little more strenuous then what I was expecting. The Home Office officer examined my passport in detail before letting me through…

En route to security I stopped by the Aer Lingus Regional check-in desk for a pic:

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After a fairly lax security screening whereby the hand-baggage screener was turned sideways talking to a colleague the whole time, I was in the “departure lounge”; a cattlemart as such where passengers wait until their gate appears on the FIDS monitor. This annoys me. I’d much rather go straight to the gate and planespot. I couldn’t even get a seat because they were all occupied with passengers.

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Notice the BRS-BRE flight is also cancelled

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I was a bit peckish now so I went into one of the shops and asked if they took Euro. The assistant said they only take Euro notes and give change in Sterling which wasn’t a great deal because of the exchange rate so I passed.

When I returned the gate for my next flight, RE3655 to Shannon was displayed; Gate 9. So off I went. Got a bit lost and ended up at the outdoor smoking area – as did other passengers I might add – so turned around to eventually find Gate 9. The layout of BRS is a little confusing I thought.

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I was a little excited now as this would complete my first travel experience on all four Irish commercial airlines; Ryanair, Aer Lingus, CityJet and Aer Arann (Aer Lingus Regional flights are operated by Aer Arann).

On entering the boarding area the agent scanned the boarding passes and assigned all passengers into two queues based on seat number. The front half of the aircraft would board first. This would be my first ever time on a turboprop.

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An Aurigny Air Services ATR 72 operating flight GR643 to Guernsey

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Boarding was called at about 12:05 WET and I was onboard at 12:08.

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Date Wednesday, 25th May 2011
Flight RE3655
Aircraft ATR 72-500
Tail No. EI-REM
Aircraft Name St Gall/Gall
Scheduled Departure 12:35 WET
Actual Departure 12:24 WET
Departure Terminal & Gate Gate 9
Departure Taxi Route Apron, Z, AX, RWY27
Weather at Departure Scattered cloud, winds SW
Scheduled Arrival 14:05 WET
Actual Arrival 13:47 WET
Arrival Taxi Route RWY24, E, D1, Apron
Weather at Arrival Overcast, winds SW
Class
Seat No. 16F
Captain Ger Roche
First Officer (N/A)
Cabin Manager Siobhán
Actual Flight Time 1 hour, 23 minutes

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On boarding I noticed that the overhead bin space was quite small; inadequate even. I had trouble fitting my small carry-on in.

The two cockpit crew and two cabin crew were Cork-based working a “W” pattern routing ORK-BRS-SNN-BRS-ORK. On her welcome announcement, cabin manager Sinéad mistakenly announced we were flying to Cork. The looks of shock and utter horror from some of my fellow passengers at the prospect of going to such a place could kill. She later took back her mistake announcing we were off to a much better, happier place  

Captain Roche mentioned in his welcome announcement that turbulent conditions were expected along the Irish Sea crossing but they’d try and make it as comfortable as possible. The load was disappointing at 31 passengers out of 72.

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We were airborne at 12:31 after allowing a Ryanair 738 to land. The takeoff was very powerful with slight turbulence on climbout.

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10 minutes after takeoff the SkyCafé service started selling Aer Lingus endorsed products. Many passengers availed of this service. The crew explained that hot food was not available on Aer Lingus Regional flights. I noticed one of the crew, Nicola, was wearing a Cork Airport ID badge around her neck.

Our cruising altitude was 22,000 feet with a groundspeed of 500km/h.

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The SkyShopping service was offered about halfway through our flight. Not one passenger bought anything.

Soon enough the green fields of home became visible.

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The flight was bumpy enough; to be expected on an ATR I suppose. Noise levels weren’t bad seeing as I was sitting behind the propeller. At 13:30 WET the “10 minutes to landing” call was made by the captain. Turbulence became quite strong on approach. We slammed onto Runway 24 with a vengeance at 13:38 on what was undoubtedly the most “severe” landing I’ve ever experienced. The braking action literally had myself and fellow passengers leaning forwards. It could have been much smoother too had the cockpit crew decided to go the standard arrival pattern around the airfield; RWY24, A, Apron. Instead, we made a 360° turn to exit on E. We were almost 30 minutes early too so it’s not like they couldn’t afford to lose the time.

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Aer Lingus A330-200 (EI-LAX) awaiting departure to New York as flight EI111

We stopped short before coming off Taxiway D1 for a few minutes; the captain came on to inform us that because we were early, they were waiting for the arrival of the dispatchers to guide the aircraft on-stand. We made it anyway and at 13:47 we were parked up at Gate 1.

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Ryanair 738 parked at Gate 5 preparing for departure to Lanzarote, Spain as flight FR1344

The crew announced that the rear half of the aircraft had to be disembarked first and that this was standard procedure. As I joined my fellow passengers in walking to arrivals we encountered another delay. Apparently the door into the immigration hall was locked. I don’t like to complain about SNN now but this seemed a bit unprofessional.

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http://i52.tinypic.com/33fc2gi.jpg
Any minute now lads…

Once we got inside we were faced with another wait for the GNIB officers to show their faces. A member of our cabin crew had to go into the GNIB office where apparently the Garda officers were having lunch. Only in Shannon! When they did come out, all that was necessary was a flash of the front of the passport showing the harp and we were through.

http://i54.tinypic.com/npgbk5.jpg

I had just missed the next bus back to Limerick city centre so I decided to get a bit to eat; I was fairly hungry now. The landside part of the terminal was deserted yet I somehow managed to bump into of the managers from my part-time job in Listowel who was dropping off a mate on the return flight to BRS. I love that about Shannon; you always manage to meet someone you know – even in these quiet times.

http://i54.tinypic.com/suyj51.jpg
British Airways pilots after clocking in to operate the SNN-JFK sector of flight BA1, departing at 14:55

So that’s it. A very rich travel experience with a nice variety of airports and airlines to try out as well as visit a city I’ve wanted to for a long time.

Thanks for reading,
Kevin

Previous:
46. Aer Lingus EI125 SNN-ORD (Direct - Few Pics) (by AmricanShamrok May 9 2008 in Trip Reports)
47. Aer Lingus EI124 ORD-SNN (pics) (by AmricanShamrok May 30 2008 in Trip Reports)
48. & 49. Aer Lingus First: Avod To Chicago (ORD) [pics] (by AmricanShamrok Aug 25 2008 in Trip Reports)
50. & 51. Aer Lingus EI124 ORD-DUB-SNN [with Pics] (by AmricanShamrok Nov 21 2008 in Trip Reports)
52. & 53. A Continental Experience: Transatlantic & Beyond - Pics (by AmricanShamrok Aug 13 2009 in Trip Reports)
54. & 55. AF (& WX) ‹‹Voyageur›› ORD-CDG-SNN (lots Of Pics) (by AmricanShamrok Sep 11 2009 in Trip Reports)
56. & 57. Aer Lingus Domestic (SNN-DUB-SNN) On The A330+pics (by AmricanShamrok Feb 13 2010 in Trip Reports)
58. & 59. London Baby! (SNN-LGW-SNN) With Ryanair+pics (by AmricanShamrok Mar 6 2010 in Trip Reports)
60. & 61. <


Shannon-Chicago
11 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAmricanShamrok From Ireland, joined May 2008, 2885 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (3 years 2 months 18 hours ago) and read 10037 times:

60. & 61. US Customs In Shannon, Ireland + CO To ORD (pics!) (by AmricanShamrok Aug 19 2010 in Trip Reports)
62. & 63. Delay With Continental: ORD-EWR-SNN (With Pics!) (by AmricanShamrok Aug 29 2010 in Trip Reports)
64. & 65. DUB Terminal 2 Trial + KIR-DUB Return On FR (pics) (by AmricanShamrok Oct 15 2010 in Trip Reports)
66., 67., 68. & 69. ¡Hola Barcelona! Flying Irish with FR, EI, RE-pics



Shannon-Chicago
User currently offlinejoffie From Australia, joined Mar 2006, 806 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (3 years 2 months 17 hours ago) and read 9880 times:

Hi

Nice report. Interesting time you had


User currently offlineaerdingus From Ireland, joined Dec 2006, 2826 posts, RR: 15
Reply 3, posted (3 years 2 months 5 hours ago) and read 9482 times:

Nice trip report of a flight I often do myself, to both BCN & GRO.I really like GRO airport & the town itself is beautiful.And of course BCN: no comparison. Cool aswell to see the RE report, seemed like a quiet day for them!

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Thread starter):
My flight to BCN would be aboard St Malachy or EI-EDS, an A320 with slightly different seats to standard EI ones.

This bird took me home from MAD last week. I thought the seats were the new EI interior! I knew -EDS was an ex-IB order but didn't know it was such an oddball. Nice to know why!  



Cabin crew blog http://dolefuldolegirl.blogspot.ie/
User currently offlineaidansnn From Ireland, joined Jun 2010, 29 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (3 years 2 months 3 hours ago) and read 9315 times:

Hi Kevin,

Really enjoyed your trip report! Always nice to get a glimpse into how my local services are doing!

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Thread starter):
There is no need for a microphone in the boarding “room” of this small airport.

Yes my parents recently flew to ALC from Kerry, and were bemused at its size, but very impressed by the friendliness of staff there.

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Thread starter):
The load was disappointing at 31 passengers out of 72.

That's disappointing alright. Well, at least it hasn't been cut for the Winter! Seems there has always been enough of a market between Bristol and the Shannon region to maintain a viable service.

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Thread starter):
Apparently the door into the immigration hall was locked. I don’t like to complain about SNN now but this seemed a bit unprofessional.

Oh dear...   Gotta get some more flights into the airport soon to keep the staff on their toes!!

Aidan


User currently offlineAmricanShamrok From Ireland, joined May 2008, 2885 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (3 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 8873 times:

Quoting joffie (Reply 2):

Thanks Joffie.

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 3):
Nice trip report of a flight I often do myself, to both BCN & GRO.I really like GRO airport & the town itself is beautiful.And of course BCN: no comparison. Cool aswell to see the RE report, seemed like a quiet day for them!

Thanks Aoife. The only problem I had with BCN was finding transport into Barcelona! Then again, my very little knowledge of Spanish probably didn't help things!

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 3):
This bird took me home from MAD last week. I thought the seats were the new EI interior! I knew -EDS was an ex-IB order but didn't know it was such an oddball. Nice to know why!

I was happy to get on it because of its non-standard layout to the rest of the fleet.

Quoting aidansnn (Reply 4):
Yes my parents recently flew to ALC from Kerry, and were bemused at its size, but very impressed by the friendliness of staff there.

Hi Aidan, yes for an airport of its size I have no complaints I have to say. Everything is handled very professionally and smoothly.

Quoting aidansnn (Reply 4):
Oh dear... Gotta get some more flights into the airport soon to keep the staff on their toes!!

  



Shannon-Chicago
User currently offlinebuck3y3nut From United States of America, joined Jul 2006, 880 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (3 years 1 month 4 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 8759 times:

Great report. Barcelona is truly a magnificent city. I would love to head back there someday. Easily one of my favorite cities in the world... I can't wait to head back there...
thanks for the report. brought back some memories  


User currently offlineaerdingus From Ireland, joined Dec 2006, 2826 posts, RR: 15
Reply 7, posted (3 years 1 month 4 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 8676 times:

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Reply 5):
The only problem I had with BCN was finding transport into Barcelona!

Oh no! As far as I know there is the Aerobus, direct but kinda expensive, & a train. TBH FR airports are easier...when the 737 lands....the bus will be there ha, like GRO.  



Cabin crew blog http://dolefuldolegirl.blogspot.ie/
User currently offlineFlyingFinn76 From Finland, joined Jun 2009, 1706 posts, RR: 31
Reply 8, posted (3 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 8491 times:

Hi Kevin,

A nice report on your jaunt to sunny Catalonia! I kinda liked your routing, a bit more creative than doing the same flights on both directions.

I flew into Kerry once in 2007 with Aer Arrann, that was an interesting, tiny airport. I still find it quite peculiar that FR operates domestic Irish routes with their 737s, PSO or no PSO - I don't think those routes can make any money (unless their "marketing support" cash from the regional airports is quite substantial, which in the light of the current Irish economy I very much doubt!).


User currently offlineAmricanShamrok From Ireland, joined May 2008, 2885 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (3 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 8318 times:

Quoting buck3y3nut (Reply 6):
Great report. Barcelona is truly a magnificent city. I would love to head back there someday. Easily one of my favorite cities in the world... I can't wait to head back there...
thanks for the report. brought back some memories

Thank you. It made a great impression on me and to be honest, I can't wait to go back again. I love cities with beaches - it reminded me of Chicago, my home town.

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 7):
Oh no! As far as I know there is the Aerobus, direct but kinda expensive, & a train. TBH FR airports are easier...when the 737 lands....the bus will be there ha, like GRO.

Yes there is a nice variation between the main airport (BCN) and the Ryanair airport (GRO)!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 8):
A nice report on your jaunt to sunny Catalonia! I kinda liked your routing, a bit more creative than doing the same flights on both directions.

Thank you FlyingFinn. Yeah I particularly liked this trip because of the routing  Never been to BCN, GRO or BRS before, never flown on Aer Lingus Regional/RE and it was my first (real) flight from DUB Terminal 2!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 8):
I flew into Kerry once in 2007 with Aer Arrann, that was an interesting, tiny airport. I still find it quite peculiar that FR operates domestic Irish routes with their 737s, PSO or no PSO - I don't think those routes can make any money (unless their "marketing support" cash from the regional airports is quite substantial, which in the light of the current Irish economy I very much doubt!).

It's an interesting situation. FR were subsidised by the government to operate it three times daily, then they threw a hissy fit and pulled out, now they operate it purely "commercially" with no government support and they are bidding for the next government subsidy contract to operate it!



Shannon-Chicago
User currently offline717Flyer From Finland, joined Jun 2011, 303 posts, RR: 10
Reply 10, posted (3 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 8182 times:

Hi Kevin,
thank you for this report. With all the details you really documented the flights very well!

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Thread starter):
The actual load factor for this flight was 31/189 or 16%

Wonder how long Ryanair will stay on the route if your flight was not a terrible exception?

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Thread starter):
The boarding announcement was a standardised one read out from a piece of paper.

I wish all airport agents and cabin crew would throw out papers from the windows. As many times as they do their announcements I think they would like it more themselves too without paper.
I remember once flying with Blue1 HEL-OUL the boarding call was made 'This is the final call onboard Blue1 207, the train is leaving... ... I mean the flight is leaving soon, yes do not worry, if this is a train then it is a very, very fast train, taking you to Oulu in 1 hour"

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Thread starter):
On entering the boarding area the agent scanned the boarding passes and assigned all passengers into two queues based on seat number

I wish more airlines would do that - certainly makes boarding more organized.

Quoting AmricanShamrok (Thread starter):
On her welcome announcement, cabin manager Sinéad mistakenly announced we were flying to Cork. The looks of shock and utter horror from some of my fellow passengers at the prospect of going to such a place could kill. She later took back her mistake announcing we were off to a much better, happier place  

Mistakes come and go, we are all humans.
Once flying to RVN, again with Blue1, it was the day before christmas eve, some passengers drunk a bit too much wine onboard and as we landed and the flight attendant announced "Welcome to Helsinki" some of the passengers started yelling: 'What the heck, for a whole hour we've been locked into this horrible airplane - and how long did we get - nowhere"

Cheers!
717Flyer


User currently offlineAmricanShamrok From Ireland, joined May 2008, 2885 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (3 years 1 month 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 7669 times:

Hi 717Flyer, thank you for your comments.

Quoting 717Flyer (Reply 10):
Wonder how long Ryanair will stay on the route if your flight was not a terrible exception?

They are operating it for political reasons to get one over on the Irish government and the Public Service Obligation scheme, which they are against; they are even going against their own policy of not operating a non-profitable route.

Quoting 717Flyer (Reply 10):
I wish all airport agents and cabin crew would throw out papers from the windows. As many times as they do their announcements I think they would like it more themselves too without paper.
I remember once flying with Blue1 HEL-OUL the boarding call was made 'This is the final call onboard Blue1 207, the train is leaving... ... I mean the flight is leaving soon, yes do not worry, if this is a train then it is a very, very fast train, taking you to Oulu in 1 hour"

I must say I prefer the more personal announcements myself. At Bristol Airport they use robatic automated announcements which really annoyed me for some reason!



Shannon-Chicago
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