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753 Or The Flying Pencil: HEL-RIX-FRA-PMI  
User currently offlineFlyingFinn76 From Finland, joined Jun 2009, 1706 posts, RR: 30
Posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 10931 times:

Introduction

Hunting for rarish plane types can be hard business. Some weeks ago I failed in my quest for logging the Beech 1900D ( To Beech Or Not To BE? HEL-ARN-KSD/TYF-HFS-ARN (by FlyingFinn76 Oct 25 2011 in Trip Reports) ) but had such fun trying to do it that I can’t really be disappointed. Another type missing from me was the stretched version of once ubiquitous Boeing 757, the -300 subtype. This model wasn’t exactly a huge commercial success with only 55 examples rolled off the assembly line at Everett. Luckily there are at least two operators in Europe still using it (no, one of them is not Blue1 whose motto for a long time has been “A plane you don’t want - we’ll take it as long as it is not manufactured any more!”): Lufthansa’s leisure carrier Condor and Icelandair. FI only has a single example, whereas DE has a much larger fleet of 13 birds, so the best chance for scoring one would be to go with Condor.

With this in mind one day I noticed Condor having another one of their fare sales and found a flight from FRA to PMI (where else, after all you have more Germans visiting in Mallorca than the Oktoberfest every year!) at end of season in November for a nice price of 49 EUR (plus another 3 EUR credit card booking fee on top of that). The flight time was quite nasty as it was leaving at 4.50 on a Sunday morning, but then again the early arrival at PMI maximized my possibilities for getting back the same day, so I figured out this was a good chance to catch the 753 and booked the flight.

To get to FRA I booked airBaltic, who else - I’d been wanting to try their FRA service for quite some time now and this was the perfect opportunity, and cheap one as well at 59 EUR. It would be arriving in the early afternoon so I had a lot of time to visit nearby Mainz during my layover, somewhere where I’ve really wanted to go for quite many years now.

There were not that many good options ex-PMI, even the “Ballermann Shuttle” flights with AB to various places in Germany were rather expensive (bugger, as they operate A330s on some of the services!). However I noticed a cheap Vueling flight to BCN for only 19.99 EUR and decided to book that as there would be far better options onward from Barcelona. I’ve flown Vueling before and found the legroom and seat comfort frankly quite horrible, so that short hop is pretty much the only flight I can tolerate in their standard seats...

Ex-BCN there indeed were tons and tons of flight options, but while searching something really caught my eye: a Spanair flight to TXL operated with the lovely MD-87 was on sale just for 45 EUR. I booked that, mainly because of the MD-87 - their Airbuses are not very comfortable, but the good old Mad Dog should be fine. Well, of course some months later there was an equipment change and I found the flight to be scheduled as an A320 instead... damn! Optiontown was offering an upgrade to Premium class for around 50 EUR, but as the reviews of Spanair’s Premium weren’t very impressive either I decided to save my money for something better.

Finally I had planned to take the late night AB service to HEL from TXL, but it was a bit on the pricey side so I decided to wait until the next AB 49.99 EUR sale to see if I could get it for that price. Well, as usually happens by the time the next sale came around the price had already went quite high and even the sale price was quite high - clearly I would need to find something else as I just couldn’t justify paying over 150 EUR for that flight!

Oh - how I missed the Midnight Fokker! When it was running it would’ve been a no-brainer to book the late night BT flight to TXL and connect up to HEL with the midnight flight, but now the schedules required an overnight stay at RIX and I didn’t want to do that.

So I played around with various booking engines (well, matrix.itasoftware.com mainly) and noticed that LH is actually quite lax in their routing and especially open jaw rules. Sure, they are horribly expensive as one ways, but doing an open jaw even to a completely different country is quite price effective, so I came up with the nicely convoluted itinerary of TXL-FRA-CPH-HEL, plus a return HEL-CPH segment for December (which I will of course use to book another nice trip around) for 240 EUR, much better per-segment value than the AB one plus a visit to the LH Senator lounge at Tegel.

So here’s the full itinerary, quite a crazy weekend especially since I decided to go cheap and not book a hotel at FRA:



Some minor (five to ten minutes one way or another, no biggie) schedule adjustments occurred with the Vueling and airBaltic flights, but nothing major luckily.

Saturday 5.11.2011

This day didn’t get off to a very good start as I had a very bad night - kept waking up every half an hour or so and actually got up at one point, totally confused and certain that my alarm had gone off (it was around 1.30 AM at that point...) so by the time the alarm DOES indeed go off I’m not feeling very good at all. I think I should avoid spicy food in the evening if I have an early wake up call...

Well, what can you do but to try to gather yourself, shower, eat something and head outside to the bus stop. This is Finland in November, 7 AM - no wonder we are such a depressed nation:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_1.jpg

Soon enough the bus arrives and to my surprise I spot fellow a.netter makeree there. Well it’s more like he spots me and waves - I’m far too deep in zombieland to pay any attention. It is actually not a complete surprise as we are on the same flight down to RIX but I thought we’d hook up at the airport but apparently the train and bus schedules had him doing a detour via my neighbourhood... Well, all the better.

We are at HEL T1 around 7.30 and head upstairs through the quiet security check, both of us of course having done OLCI before. I’m quite surprised to see BT using a gate with a jetway for this flight this time - most of the time this overnighting 737 is parked somewhere in the apron requiring a nasty bus ride.

Since being downgraded from Executive to VIP just five days previously I no longer have any lounge access at HEL when flying with BT in economy, so we decide to head to the coffee bar for some desperately needed caffeine - too bad the coffee turns out to be quite horrible (at least the mug is nice):

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_2.jpg

Boarding is called around half an hour before departure, quite a queue at the gate but smooth sailing - when passing the agent I comment on the use of the jetway but must’ve still been half asleep as I have no recollection of her answer...

Today’s ride is YL-BBS (ahh, brings back nice memories from the times before this Internet thingy...), the expected 737-300 model and a very new one at that, having first flown only in 1999! Actually BT operates the three last ever produced -300 examples (YL-BBJ, BBX and BBY). Third flight for me with this particular plane.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_3.jpg

HEL - RIX
BT302
B737-300 YL-BBS
Seat 4A
8.34 - 9.21

I’m in the first row of economy just behind the curtain. Economy is around half full with no one in business class. Boarding doesn’t take long, but then we just wait for a while until the gate agent comes onboard, hands in the manifest to the crew and says (quite loudly since I can easily overhear her) “There’s still one passenger missing, he is right now at check in and will come straight here.”.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_4.jpg

Some ten minutes later one passenger actually comes and boards - he turns out to be a BT employee as the flight crew seem to know him and he is carrying a BT ID card around his neck.

In the seat pocket they have a promo for BOB sushi - this is one of the things I like about BT, they are constantly innovating (well, some people might say ripping off other people’s ideas...) and trying out new things - some of them work, some of them don’t but you can’t put a man (or a company) down for trying, can you? Anyway I make a mental note to try this out on the next flight if they have any:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_5.jpg

Right after that the doors are closed and we are pushed back, even a minute ahead a schedule.

Must have a 717 in a report - well two of ‘em actually:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_6.jpg

When the engines are started there’s a very nice vortex effect visible as the engines keep sucking the misty air in - it looked far nicer live with that... air thing... wiggling like a stoned snake in a Goa snake charmer show than in these pictures:



OF looking good this morning:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_9.jpg

This one landed on 15 and is taxiing to its gate, I’m pretty sure it is the JFK arrival:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_10.jpg

A cattle truck off to undoubtedly somewhere much warmer and nicer:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_11.jpg

The second overnighting BT bird - this one will operate the next departure to RIX an hour and change later:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_12.jpg

Take off is from 22R - the weather is quite drab:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_13.jpg

...but once through the thin cloud layer we are treated to an amazing light show, courtesy of the rising sun:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_14.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_15.jpg

I forgot to buy a bottle of water so I grab one from the BOB cart - this one dedicated to gabrielchew:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Helsinki_Departure_16.jpg

I doze some but am unable to get any real shuteye so I resort to reading my newspaper instead and in no time at all we are into our finals over the Gulf of Riga - first some more nice sunny views:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Approach_1.jpg

...but after descending through a rather thick cloud layer the Riga weather shows us that it indeed is November here - these are the first views of the ground just a few seconds before a hard landing on runway 18:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Approach_2.jpg

Passing some Dashes:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Approach_3.jpg

We get a jetway gate, always nice.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Approach_4.jpg

Riga Airport

Guess which airline this queue belongs to (hint: it’s not airBaltic):

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Approach_5.jpg

Makeree is on his way to LGW and has managed to upgrade his flight to business class (congrats!) so we both have lounge access (again, due to being a lowly VIP nowadays I can’t bring any guests to the lounge) and head to the airBaltic lounge for some nibbles, drinks, wifi and chat.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Approach_6.jpg

The couple of hours layover goes by rather fast and soon enough the lounge agent comes to tell makere that his flight is now boarding, so we say our goodbyes (based on the current schedules our next joint flights are in January...) and he heads out. Some ten minutes later it is time for my flight and I head down to the A gates area (which of course means a bus boarding). I’m quite surprised to find the gate area absolutely packed - somehow I assumed this flight would be quite empty:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Departure_1.jpg

Some joking with the agent after I am the very first person to miss the first packed bus (“Can’t I walk there?” - “No, it is too far to walk. But I’ll call you a taxi!” - referring to the second bus). We drive towards a row of Dashes parked in the northern apron - and where do we stop? In front of YL-BAE of course - their oldest example and thus the one I’ve had the chance to log the most times - this will already be my sixth flight with her!

RIX - FRA
BT241
Dash 8 Q 400 YL-BAE
Seat 24D
11.32 - 12.57

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Departure_2.jpg

Inside it is quite packed already and I find a Latvian guy sitting in my seat - as expected he is the aisle guy who thought he got lucky. Sorry, but I reserved this seat already way back when I booked this flight (another perk of status - normal pax need to pay 3 EUR for that), so it’s mine!

Neighbours:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Departure_3.jpg

Well, it isn’t the most comfortable of seats with a seat mate and a rather full cabin - I see no empty blocks of two anywhere in economy, just some empty seats here and there. Economy load is somewhere around 90%, three rows of business class have a couple of passengers. Quite a lot of Russians onboard, coming in from Kaliningrad judging from their boarding passes (results of the KD Avia bankrupcy?). Also some other connecting pax from the BT destinations in the east like TBS etc.

The British captain announces a flight time of 2h20mins and push back is pretty much on time.

I so wish this ex-Aeroflot TU-134 would join the aviation “museum” next door soon - it’s now been parked here for well over a year and I don’t think anybody has done anything with it:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Departure_4.jpg

We tail makeree’s 737 to runway 18 and take off right after it, disappearing soon into the murk:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Departure_5.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Riga_Departure_6.jpg

Over Lithuania the weather clears up, affording some nice views - this is Telšiai on the shores of the Lake Mastis:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_1.jpg

Klaipeda - the biggest port in the Baltics:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_2.jpg

Directly over Šilutė:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_3.jpg

Part of the extensive delta of the Nemam river:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_4.jpg

At this point I am starting to have a serious feeling of deja vu - see I just read Markus’ latest report in the lounge where he was flying YL-BAE (check) to TXL, sitting in 24D (check) in a packed plane (check), had a talkative British captain (check) and some amazing views of the Curonian spit (check, see the next photos):

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_5.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_6.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_7.jpg

Once the BOB service gets underway I do what I already decided on the previous flight and order the sushi box plus a nicely chilled can of Aldaris:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_8.jpg

Inside - in addition to this there were two sachets of very nice and potent wasabi, a larger sachet of soy sauce with a small cup to pour it in and a pair of chopsticks:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_9.jpg

I hate raw fish so am normally not a big sushi eater - but luckily this dish is made out of duck and chicken (and seriously speaking - I would be more than a little suspicious at eating raw fish in a dish like this which is actually stored in warm and not refrigerated - instant food poisoning anyone?).

Anyway this meal was a good one - it scored well on all fronts: taste was ok, it was quite substantial, excellent value for money (even though they charged me the list price of 6 EUR instead of the offer price 5.50 EUR - I was too lazy to kick up a fuss, BT needs that money more than I do!) and for an airline meal another important point: it took quite a while to finish, making the flight to appear much faster (never underestimate this point - that’s one of the main purposes of an inflight meal!).

Munching on sushi I watch as we momentarily cross over the front and penetrate into the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad. This is Baltiysk (or Pillau im Deutsch) - the westernmost town in today’s Russia - the citadel and its moat are clearly visible:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_10.jpg

My anxiety is soon released as we leave Russian airspace, cross the Gulf of Gdansk and make landfall to Poland near Gdansk - sorry for the hazy photo:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_11.jpg

Hey, it’s SXF - not, it’s BER:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_12.jpg

Cabin view en route:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_13.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_14.jpg

Over Germany the weather clears further and the last 45 minutes of this flight offer very pretty views:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_15.jpg

Well, some not so pretty as well:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_16.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_17.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_18.jpg

Looks like a quarry to me:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_19.jpg

Nice autumn colors:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Enroute_to_Frankfurt_20.jpg

For me our approach appears to be quite weird as we pass FRA from the north, then fly over the city towards the southwest before turning around and lining up with the 07s.

Frankfurt - too bad the skyscrapers (and FRA beyond them) were on the other side of the plane - I bet the views were awesome:


http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_1.jpg

The Taunus mountains looking very atmospheric:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_2.jpg

Hello Rhine, see you in a bit:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_3.jpg

The huge Opel factory at Rüsselsheim, just a stone’s throw from the airport:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_4.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_5.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_6.jpg

Landing is on 07R after around 2h15mins of flight time - certainly quite a long time in a packed Dash.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_7.jpg

Never seen Corendon at FRA before:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_8.jpg

The quintessential FRA shot - a LH widebody lifting away:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_9.jpg

As expected we get an apron parking position in front of T2 and a bus ride into the terminal.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_10.jpg

Frankfurt Airport, take 1

From T2 I take the automated train thingy to T1 - FRA is definitely the place for nice reflections:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_11.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_12.jpg

Not that interesting planes this time, but this departing 747 still looks so nice:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_13.jpg

From T1 Regionalbahnhof I take the S8 train to Mainz. Passing the Opel factory at Rüsselsheim again - it even has its own train stop:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Approach_14.jpg

Mainz

I spend a very nice Saturday afternoon and evening in Mainz - the weather is just perfect - a sunny, clear and warmish autumn day with lots of people around.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_3.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_4.jpg



Hmm, isn’t there a Finnish member here with this name:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_1.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_6.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_7.jpg

Mainz just happens to be Gutenberg’s (not Steve, the one of the moving type fame) hometown:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_9.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_10.jpg

Well, a well, but a very nice one at that:



They had some sort of wine happening going on right next to the cathedral:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_12.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_13.jpg

These prices are cheap as chips - at least to someone so used to Finland (and having this kind of happening here would just not be possible as certain drinking laws would make it just too damn complicated to get a license):



The Rheinufer - a very nice promenade along the Rhine:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_15.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_16.jpg

I sit here for a long while, just chilling and watching the busy traffic on the river:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_19.jpg

And the equally busy traffic into FRA’s 07s:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_17.jpg

I don’t think this one is going to FRA, though:

45 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineFlyingFinn76 From Finland, joined Jun 2009, 1706 posts, RR: 30
Reply 1, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 11018 times:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_18.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_20.jpg

This is actually the city hall:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_21.jpg

Here’s a place for Lee - maybe you should come here to sample next time you have a long FRA layover, mate:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_22.jpg

Some kind of demonstration for animal rights:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_23.jpg

This is just scary:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_24.jpg

Oh yes:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_25.jpg

Finally I trundle to the train station and take the S8 back to FRA airport.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_26.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_27.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Mainz_28.jpg

Frankfurt Airport, take 2

Have you ever seen FRA this deserted:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_2.jpg

Still, come tomorrow morning it will be very busy again:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_1.jpg

Classy:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_3.jpg

This thing was amazing:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_4.jpg

Early Sunday morning is definitely the time for holiday flights:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_5.jpg

Nice:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_6.jpg

I thought I had come up with the perfect plan: I did OLCI for my TXL-FRA-CPH-HEL flights tomorrow and now managed to get the FRA-CPH-HEL boarding passes from a LH self service kiosk (kinda weird that it printed out boarding passes mid journey, but then again I don’t really expect a FRA machine to print out BPs for a TXL-FRA flight...) so I could use these to go to a LH lounge for the rest of the evening and then just crash somewhere after (if) it closes for the night.

With this in mind I head to the A pier security check, but the boarding pass screener shatters my dreams as he explains that since I have a flight tomorrow (I actually showed him the DE OLCI BP) I can only go through security after midnight. Wow, that sounds quite bollocks to me, but what can I do - to the guy’s credit I have to mention that he was very friendly and apologetic about it and even suggested a sleeping place upstairs where I could go to wait and crash...

Oh, a word or fifteen about the Condor OLCI - this was one of the biggest scams I’ve ever seen - apparently there is NO way whatsoever to do OLCI without having a seat reservation. And to have a reservation you must pay. Money. Sheckels. Dolores. Euros, you know. So pay I did - 10 EUR for a bog standard economy window seat on the penultimate row (last row was completely blocked, more on this later) - there is something cool in having seat 49A on a narrowbody I think  . As a sidenote the load judging from the seat map didn’t look too good, and considering DE was still selling 49 EUR seats for this flight less than a week before departure it probably wouldn’t be either! Still, that OLCI scam got me into a rather bad mood...

Intermission over, now back to present: I decide to check out the area the security agent suggested upstairs next to the LH ticket office. Yes, indeed it is nicely secluded and quiet with some benches to sleep on - too bad many other pax apparently know this and almost all of them are already reserved by snoring people. Well, there actually is one vacant one but the next bench is taken over by a young couple very well into their foreplay at this stage so I decide to skip it as trying to sleep next to an intercourse-in-progress is not exactly my kind of thing (babe!).

Instead I remember this rather nice German winestube-style restaurant I once visited (and had a very nice meal in!) in the bowels of FRA T1 near the train stations and decide to head there for a drink or five. Well, apparently the place doesn’t exist any more as I’m unable to find it, but after wandering aimlessly along the mostly deserted corridors I stumble upon this:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_7.jpg

“To heck with it”, I think and head inside for a pitcher of beer - I’ve never been to a Hooters before so I guess I have to try. Well, judging from this place I will never be to a Hooters ever again, but at least it was a decent way of whiling away some time... The check is quite cute, however:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_8.jpg

I go back to the T1 check in hall, it still is not midnight so I find a bench and just grab a few hours of shuteye. I wake up (or rather am woken up by my cell phone alarm) around 1 AM and decide to head to the gate to continue my sleep. Well, too bad the B gates security screeners tell me to get lost and to come back at 3AM when they open shop. Why the heck are you then there standing around and chatting if your shift doesn’t begin until two hours later??

Anyway I go to another bench and sleep for another two hours.

Sunday 6.11.2011

This time there are quite a few passengers at the security check point - judging from the FIDS I saw earlier they are all going for the two Condor flights from the B pier - my flight to PMI and another one to AYT. Typical holiday travelers so things aren’t exactly too smooth and progress is rather slow. One of the screeners actually congratulates me and gives me a huge thumbs up for knowing the drill perfectly and not beeping while going through the WTMD - yes darling, I reckon I’ve done this maybe 750 times by now so I’ve sort of mastered the art and like this time proves can do it fine even when half asleep.

I grab a bottle of water from the only open concession - overpriced or not I definitely need it as all that beer I had yesterday has left my dehydrated as hell...

I don’t like this B gates upstairs area one tiny bit - I’ve had far too many bus boardings to HEL flights from here and that sort of creeps me out.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_9.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_10.jpg

Luckily boarding is called quite soon, me being me I’m of course the very first one to pass the gate and walk the stairs downstairs to the waiting bus.

The bus ride is kinda weird as I’m really used to seeing FRA chock full of planes and activity everywhere and especially a large number of widebodies. Well - at this time of the day there are NO widebodies whatsoever anywhere in the B or C piers. Actually there are only two planes docked to the jetways there - the DE 753 to AYT and an overnighting Turkish one. All the other jetways are just... empty. Certainly a spooky feeling.

The A pier, on the contrary is full of LH narrowbodies, sleeping to gather strength for the next day’s ordeals, starting with an early morning departure to various destinations around Europe in just a few hours...

We drive quite a long distance toward runway 18 until finally stopping in front of a... tadaa.... 757-300 D-ABOH! Yes, mission (almost) accomplished!

FRA - PMI
DE7398
B757-300 D-ABOH
Seat 49A
4.57 - 6.45

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_11.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_12.jpg

For Markus:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_13.jpg

This bird is so long that it is impossible to get a full frame photo this close.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_14.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_15.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_16.jpg

Boarding through the back door, what else. The last row, 50, turns out to be a half row due to the galley and the half of it (ABC) has some crew bags stashed there:



Condor motif:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_18.jpg

I’m seated in a mini cabin of sorts - just ten or so rows here before a bulkhead and toilets separating it from the main cabin. The load, despite a second bus bringing in more passengers isn’t very impressive at all - less than half of the seats in this mini cabin are taken (with three for me) and I guess not that better up front either.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_19.jpg

Legroom is good:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_20.jpg

Modern airshow:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_21.jpg

I completely miss any announcements from the flight deck, although I have a vague recollection that someone announced the flight time as a quick 1h50mins. Anyway the push back is a few minutes late, with take off from 18 a few minutes later - nice to have no hindering traffic at FRA for once. Take off is very impressive, despite being rather lightly loaded for the short hop with a light load the engines sure make their best to send us rocketing skywards.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_22.jpg

Satellite map:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Frankfurt_Departure_1_23.jpg

After take off I zonk out, I wake up once to see that dawn is indeed getting nearer over the eastern horizon:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_1.jpg

...but soon fall back asleep. I basically sleep through the whole flight, including the inflight service and only wake up properly once we are less than five minutes away from touchdown, which is very hard and wobbly on PMI’s runway 24L.

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_2.jpg

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_3.jpg

The pax seated on the row ahead of me left these so I guess the sandwich wasn’t too good:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_4.jpg

Cute - offering post cards onboard seems to be a German thing:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_5.jpg

AB next to us:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_6.jpg

Deboarding seems to be incredibly slow, so I head to the back galley where the door is open, enjoy the nice smelling Mediterranean air, chat a bit with the very senior male FA there (he warns me of thunderstorms in BCN where I tell him I’m going) and shoot a photo of the impeding dawn:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_7.jpg

Finally it is time to deboard so I walk through this seriously long bird:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_8.jpg

One bad final shot, bye:

http://i895.photobucket.com/albums/ac154/FlyingFinn_photo/Mainz_Palma_Barcelona_11_2011/Part1/Palma_Approach_9.jpg


This part ends here. The second part will contain my return journey from Palma via BCN, TXL, FRA and CPH plus a comparison between two Spanish carriers - Vueling and Spanair. Stay tuned!

Conclusions

Two nice flights with BT as usual - good fare, friendly crews and one comfortable and one not too comfortable flight - business as usual with them. That sushi meal was a nice bonus, very nice and tasty and a fresh idea, big thumbs up.

Condor - well. I’m happy I managed to log the rare and very cool 757-300. Then again I’m a bit buggered that I basically slept through the whole experience, but with a flight schedule like that what can do you. The little I experienced of DE service seemed to be good, although that OLCI thing with the seat reservation left a very sour taste in my mouth (and some more of this in part 2!) - that’s something I’d expect from FR et al but not really DE who is perceived to be a quality carrier. Apart from that everything was fine, seating comfort surprisingly good for a cattle truck and the 753 of course a very nice and special plane to fly with! I think I need to go back and do another flight during the daytime to sample some more...

Finally, Mainz was a very pleasant city to stroll around for an afternoon plus to have some grub and beer in. It’s less than 25 minutes from FRA with the S8 so definitely a recommendable place to while away some of those long layovers.


User currently offlineEuroWings From UK - England, joined Sep 2011, 298 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 10740 times:

HI FF,

Great report as usual. The Condor 757-300 being the star of the report. I remember flying on one of these operated by Flying Colours (now TCX) quite a few years ago!

The airBaltic dashes are deployed on quite a few routes aren't they? I am surprised they are heading to FRA as I tend to associate them with thinner routes.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
although that OLCI thing with the seat reservation left a very sour taste in my mouth (and some more of this in part 2!) -

This isn't unique to Condor, Thomas Cook UK and Monarch also do this. Highly annoying if you ask me.

Looking forward to more!

Thanks
EuroWings


User currently offlinedeltamartin From Sweden, joined Dec 2010, 1061 posts, RR: 7
Reply 3, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 10684 times:

Hi FF!

Great tripreport as usual!

The Condor 753 is a planetype I've considered flying aswell, maybe combining it with a Monarch A300, no booking made so far though.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
one of them is not Blue1 whose motto for a long time has been %u201CA plane you don%u2019t want - we%u2019ll take it as long as it is not manufactured any more!%u201D)

Ha, made me laugh!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Guess which airline this queue belongs to (hint: it%u2019s not airBaltic):

I'm gonna take a wild guess... Ryanair?

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I so wish this ex-Aeroflot TU-134 would join the aviation %u201Cmuseum%u201D next door soon - it%u2019s now been parked here for well over a year and I don%u2019t think anybody has done anything with it:

Was there when I visited RIX in April. Def. a beautiful bird.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I hate raw fish so am normally not a big sushi eater - but luckily this dish is made out of duck and chicken

Hmm, that's good. Would love to try it, don't have any flights booked with BT right now though.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
This bird is so long that it is impossible to get a full frame photo this close.

Now that's one long narrowbody!

Looking forward to the next part!

Martin

[Edited 2011-11-12 14:30:01]

User currently offlineLH4116 From Sweden, joined Aug 2007, 1715 posts, RR: 18
Reply 4, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 10666 times:

Hello there P as in PETA, great report!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
ubiquitous

What's up with you titling aircraft types like that, lol!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
(no, one of them is not Blue1 whose motto for a long time has been “A plane you don’t want - we’ll take it as long as it is not manufactured any more!”):

I can only think of the MD-90 and 717. Any more types?

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Oh - how I missed the Midnight Fokker! When it was running it would’ve been a no-brainer to book the late night BT flight to TXL and connect up to HEL with the midnight flight,

This Midnight Fokker doesn't deserve to be called notorious, IMHO. Clearly it was doing you some huge favors over the years.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
This is Finland in November, 7 AM - no wonder we are such a depressed nation:

Doesn't look too depressing, at least some nice colored leaves on the ground. But if it is as you say, suppose that's the reason why you have Koskenkorva and Finlandia to thank!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Economy is around half full with no one in business class.

Did the crew shut the curtain anf guard it with a shotgun? Or did they just let it remain open.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
they are constantly innovating (well, some people might say ripping off other people’s ideas...) and trying out new things

It's as they say "A good artist copies. A great artist steals".

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I hate raw fish so am normally not a big sushi eater - but luckily this dish is made out of duck and chicken (and seriously speaking -

No, you can't be serious. I've never come across or even heard of sushi made of poultry. This is FAUX sushi!!! The whole point of sushi is raw fish, vegetables, seaweed and rice. The raw fish is the dish!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Never seen Corendon at FRA before:

It's a weird carrier, my mom and sis were unlucky enough to be stuck in the last row on one of their B738's down to Turkey this summer. Judging their pics, it didn't seem like a nice airline nor a good flight.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Have you ever seen FRA this deserted:

Never, ever in the history of the universe, satan, earth, mankind, have I ever seen this before!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Well, there actually is one vacant one but the next bench is taken over by a young couple very well into their foreplay at this stage so I decide to skip it as trying to sleep next to an intercourse-in-progress is not exactly my kind of thing (babe!).

Is sex in public legal in Germany? Pretty strange since only Italy and France allows it. Pretty disrespectful to the other people trying to sleep, I mean c'mon there are plenty of empty restrooms...

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I’ve never been to a Hooters before so I guess I have to try.

Katshing! Now you have yet another thing to log 
Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
...but soon fall back asleep. I basically sleep through the whole flight, including the inflight service and only wake up properly once we are less than five minutes away from touchdown,

To me it seems like quite a pointless trip, if going through all that fuzz and hazzle for a flight on a new type, that you'd end up sleeping through.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Cute - offering post cards onboard seems to be a German thing:

I'm pretty sure a handful of them ended up in your bag  

Thanks for sharing. Looking forward to the next part!

//Jonas



SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
User currently offlineFLIEGER67 From UK - England, joined Sep 2003, 5186 posts, RR: 55
Reply 5, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 10657 times:

Hi, P.,

great stuff, sure a good read before heading to my book tonight.
Also nice pictures from Mainz, I´am not sure how often I´am running around that place but never been in the city till now.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):

At this point I am starting to have a serious feeling of deja vu - see I just read Markus’ latest report in the lounge where he was flying YL-BAE (check) to TXL, sitting in 24D (check) in a packed plane (check), had a talkative British captain (check) and some amazing views of the Curonian spit (check, see the next photos):

Now that´s for sure a deja vu.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):

Hey, it’s SXF - not, it’s BER:

Looking forward to that move, you know.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):

For Markus:

That´s the way I like it.

Have a nice Sunday,
Markus(FLIEGER67)



Next: London City connections!.
User currently offlinereifel From Germany, joined Feb 2005, 1383 posts, RR: 1
Reply 6, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 10629 times:

Thanks for sharing, what an itinerary

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Frankfurt - too bad the skyscrapers (and FRA beyond them) were on the other side of the plane - I bet the views were awesome:

This picture is actually Wiesbaden, a nice city just a 10 minutes train ride from Mainz. It's my hometown and you can even see my house on that picture. Next time you have some time to spend in Frankfurt, you should seriously consider spending it there. No Mainz-Bashing (quite usual over here *g*), Mainz is nice too, but now that you have seen it, do also spend a visit in Wiesbaden. You'll see nice buildings, the Kurhaus, nice parks... I can guide you  
Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Oh, a word or fifteen about the Condor OLCI - this was one of the biggest scams I’ve ever seen - apparently there is NO way whatsoever to do OLCI without having a seat reservation. And to have a reservation you must pay. Money. Sheckels. Dolores. Euros, you know. So pay I did - 10 EUR for a bog standard economy window seat on the penultimate row (last row was completely blocked, more on this later) -

Yes, I realized it last time I flew with them. Sometimes it is really worth it. Once I arrived at 3 am at the airport for a 6 am flight and it took me 2 hours to check in at this ungodly time, since they had some 10 flights or so leaving in the early morning. I would have loved to pay the 10 EUR. You could have used another service very common with German airlines at most airports, called "Vorabend-Check-in", which means "night before check in". You can do this with DE, AB, other german carriers too, even LH. There are specific counters set up the evening before and you can get your boarding pass there. Some carriers (AB, X3, not sure about Condor) ask for a fee, but it's quite low (3-5 EUR). You can even check your bags. However usually lines are quite long.

Too bad about not being able to clear security the evening before. That said, I doubt LH would have let you in the lounge with a boarding pass for the next day, but who knows  

Looking forward for the next part!


User currently offlinegabrielchew From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 3362 posts, RR: 12
Reply 7, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 10620 times:

Congrats on logging the 753!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
The flight time was quite nasty as it was leaving at 4.50 on a Sunday morning,

Very nasty - I hate spending the night in airport

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Well, of course some months later there was an equipment change and I found the flight to be scheduled as an A320 instead... damn!

Typical

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Since being downgraded from Executive to VIP just five days previously I no longer have any lounge access at HEL when flying with BT in economy

You've been downgraded? I thought you flew way too much on BT for that to happen

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
In the seat pocket they have a promo for BOB sushi

Ooh, thnking outide the box - very good

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I forgot to buy a bottle of water so I grab one from the BOB cart - this one dedicated to gabrielchew:

And they have Borjomi! Love it!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I hate raw fish so am normally not a big sushi eater - but luckily this dish is made out of duck and chicken (and seriously speaking - I would be more than a little suspicious at eating raw fish in a dish like this which is actually stored in warm and not refrigerated - instant food poisoning anyone?).

A lot of places serving fish sushi actually cook the fish. M&S, for example, don't have any raw fish in their sushi packs.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Oh yes:

Looks good!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
The bus ride is kinda weird as I’m really used to seeing FRA chock full of planes and activity everywhere and especially a large number of widebodies. Well - at this time of the day there are NO widebodies whatsoever anywhere in the B or C piers. Actually there are only two planes docked to the jetways there - the DE 753 to AYT and an overnighting Turkish one. All the other jetways are just... empty. Certainly a spooky feeling.

Must be strange seeing no widebodies in FRA. I guess it's only the short period between midnight at 5am when they are all away.



http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights:LCY-ARN-AMS-LGW,STN-OTP-AMS-YUL,YQB-JFK-LAX-DUS-STN,LGW-DXB-BKK-HKG-
User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8589 posts, RR: 54
Reply 8, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 10552 times:
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Hi P,

Great report, good to catch the 753, still missing from my log.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Another type missing from me was the stretched version of once ubiquitous Boeing 757, the -300 subtype. T

- Me too!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
The flight time was quite nasty as it was leaving at 4.50 on a Sunday morning, but then again the early arrival at PMI maximized my possibilities for getting back the same day, so I figured out this was a good chance to catch the 753 and booked the flight.

- Indeed, wish you had told me, would have joined you.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I’ve flown Vueling before and found the legroom and seat comfort frankly quite horrible

- Yep been there twice, it sucks!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
This is Finland in November, 7 AM - no wonder we are such a depressed nation:

- Looks like the London area too.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
we decide to head to the coffee bar for some desperately needed caffeine - too bad the coffee turns out to be quite horrible

- It is a worry coffee can be so bad.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
wasabi

- Yuck!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Have you ever seen FRA this deserted:

- Never.

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 offlinedebonair From Germany, joined Jan 2004, 2468 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 10475 times:

Nice TR...

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Luckily there are at least two operators in Europe still using it ... Lufthansa’s leisure carrier Condor and Icelandair. FI only has a single example, whereas DE has a much larger fleet of 13 birds,



Note to the editor: ARKIA 2x, Thomas Cook UK 2x

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
so I figured out this was a good chance to catch the 753 and booked the flight.



For the price ok- otherwise, as always in winter, DE will start domestic flights soon with the B753; like HAM-MUC-HAM!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Boarding through the back door, what else. The last row, 50, turns out to be a half row due to the galley and the half of it (ABC) has some crew bags stashed there:



After long fights with their union etc., row 50ABC is the officially crew rest area (but to be honest, I saw in the past only crew bags resting there).


User currently offlineburj From United States of America, joined Nov 2007, 901 posts, RR: 4
Reply 10, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 10427 times:

Awesome trip report! The pictures great and it really made me laugh!

The ad with the floating guy is just AWESOME!

That sucks about the checkin issues and the sleeping arrangements! Maybe I'm a little pervy but I totally would have started recording the amorous couple to either a) have a great youtube video or b) shame them into stopping!

Ugh the Hooters at Frankfurt! That is SO embarrassing, especially having the American flags there! If remember right there is a little grocery store right across from there... was that closed? I had bought quite a few nice things to eat while I was there...

Congrats on being on a 757-300! I was on a NWA one once (pre-merger with Delta). I had gotten upgraded to first and wasn't paying much attention since it was a red-eye...but I will always remember coming out of the first class lav at the front of the plane and having a sense of disbelief at just how LONG and the plane was!

Being a red-eye flight the lights were dimmed and it just seemed like a black hole was swallowing up the back of the plane!


User currently offlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6672 posts, RR: 55
Reply 11, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 10402 times:

Hi FlyingFinn!

Nice report with nice pictures !

Sounds like a very brutal trip for a weekend but glad that you finally got on a 757-300although you slept trhu the flight. After such a night though that's not surprsing since you must have been dead tired. I flew on one in April this year LAX-IAH.

Not surprsing they did not let you thru security when your boarding pass is for the next day; same thing here in the US.

Mainz looks very nice ! Seems like a good way to spend the afternoon but since I'm a spotter, I would soend it at the airpot getting new registration numbers.......

Looking forward to part 2.

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlinegpbcroppers63 From Ireland, joined Jan 2008, 524 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 3 days ago) and read 10279 times:

Hi P,

Thanks for the fab TR. Really enjoyed it. It's great that you sacrifice your sleep for our viewing pleasure.   The 753 is a great aircraft. I was on a CO on once and really enjoyed it. Looking forward to hearing about the rest of your adventure.

Cheers,

Gareth



According to one of my colleagues, my problem is that I'm addicted to travel!
User currently offlineLGWflyer From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2011, 2348 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 10146 times:

Hey FlyingFinn great trip report as usual, loved the pics! Would love to get on a 753, according to cabin crew on the 753 if you stand at one end of the aircraft you can see the back/front bend during flight. Anyway cheers!  


3 words... I Love Aviation!!!
User currently offlineAYA333 From Finland, joined Aug 2008, 110 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 9910 times:

Thanks for the great report again, P! It´s hard to keep up on your trips and reports 

Thanks also for the invitation to join you on this trip. Unfortunately I didn´t have enough currency to join you on such a short notice!

Quoting debonair (Reply 9):
For the price ok- otherwise, as always in winter, DE will start domestic flights soon with the B753; like HAM-MUC-HAM!

Condor 753 definitely is a plane to try some day, maybe on HAM-MUC route.



319,320,321,333,343,388,717,732,733,735,736,73G,738,752,AB4,AR1,AR8,ATR,AT7,D9S,D10,DH4,E45,E70,E90,F27,F50,M82,M83,M90,
User currently offlineROGERBCN From Andorra, joined Sep 2006, 1209 posts, RR: 20
Reply 15, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 9835 times:

Hola FlyingFinn76!

Great Tr as usual.

Very nice flights and great pictures of Mainz, which seems to be the place to go while waiting for the next one, especially if there is a wine party like the one you joined.

Sleeping at airports is not the most pleasant experience, I did so in ZRH and for a while it was ok, but after turned out to be a pain.... anyway, an idea to catch on some sleep while waiting for such an early flight.

B757-300, looks a great plane, I do not think I have flown any of those before; last time on one was JFK-SEA on AA, a very old looking plane, and I doubt it was the -300.

Looking forward to the next part as BCN was under heavy rain last Sunday, so let's see what your flights were like.

Salut!

Roger



"At reise er at leve" H.C. Andersen (Travelling is Living)
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 16, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 9686 times:

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I’ve never been to a Hooters before so I guess I have to try. Well, judging from this place I will never be to a Hooters ever again, but at least it was a decent way of whiling away some time... The check is quite cute, however:

Based on that pic, it seems this particular Hooters location is missing the point.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineFlyingFinn76 From Finland, joined Jun 2009, 1706 posts, RR: 30
Reply 17, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 9566 times:

Hi guys, good to see a plethora of comments already - thank you!

Quoting EuroWings (Reply 2):
The airBaltic dashes are deployed on quite a few routes aren't they? I am surprised they are heading to FRA as I tend to associate them with thinner routes.

Yeah, well they are pretty flexible in matching the pax loads with the perfect sized plane - good for business, bad for trying to catch a particular plane type with them. I don't think the FRA route is suh a heavy route for them as they don't carry that many connecting pax on that end like LH does. Plus it being a weekend the Dash was the more logical choice.

Quoting EuroWings (Reply 2):
This isn't unique to Condor, Thomas Cook UK and Monarch also do this. Highly annoying if you ask me.

Wow, that sucks. I can just about understand asking money for reserving a seat in advance - but why prevent people even from checking in without an assignment? That is just so cheap. Then again the FlyBE type of randomly assigned seat if you don't want to pay is not that nice either.

And for the record - Vueling forced me to fork up money as well, but at least it was much less than 10 EUR!

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 3):
The Condor 753 is a planetype I've considered flying aswell, maybe combining it with a Monarch A300, no booking made so far though.

Good idea - they both fly to the same destinations like AGP, PMI etc.

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 3):
I'm gonna take a wild guess... Ryanair?

Correct. You win. No prize though  .

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 4):
ubiquitous
What's up with you titling aircraft types like that, lol!

I'm not titling anything, simply using an adjective to express the fact that at one point the 757-200 was a very common airplane everywhere and still is anything but a rare one, especially in the US.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 4):
I can only think of the MD-90 and 717. Any more types?

Saab 2000 & Avro.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 4):
This Midnight Fokker doesn't deserve to be called notorious, IMHO. Clearly it was doing you some huge favors over the years.

Well it also contributed a lot to my sleep deprivation over the years.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 4):
Did the crew shut the curtain anf guard it with a shotgun? Or did they just let it remain open.

IIRC it stayed open all throughout the flight. As it should.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 4):
No, you can't be serious. I've never come across or even heard of sushi made of poultry. This is FAUX sushi!!! The whole point of sushi is raw fish, vegetables, seaweed and rice. The raw fish is the dish!

You and your faux crapola. There are plenty of different types of sushi and one without fish or any seafood is quite common.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 4):
Never, ever in the history of the universe, satan, earth, mankind, have I ever seen this before!

Watch your mouth, young man.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 4):
Is sex in public legal in Germany? Pretty strange since only Italy and France allows it. Pretty disrespectful to the other people trying to sleep, I mean c'mon there are plenty of empty restrooms...

When it comes to sex, anything is legal in Germany! Well almost, I think doing it with your car is probably illegal, especially if it is a German car.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 4):
To me it seems like quite a pointless trip, if going through all that fuzz and hazzle for a flight on a new type, that you'd end up sleeping through.

That's what you get with flight times like this. But I still managed to log it. What was I supposed to do then - I couldn't care less about the IFE and it was pitch black outside so no scenery to watch either?

Quoting reifel (Reply 6):
This picture is actually Wiesbaden, a nice city just a 10 minutes train ride from Mainz. It's my hometown and you can even see my house on that picture. Next time you have some time to spend in Frankfurt, you should seriously consider spending it there. No Mainz-Bashing (quite usual over here *g*), Mainz is nice too, but now that you have seen it, do also spend a visit in Wiesbaden. You'll see nice buildings, the Kurhaus, nice parks... I can guide you

Cool, thanks I didn't notice we were already that far away from FRA. Yes, I know Wiesbaden well, it is one of these places on my tovisit list for the next longish Frankfurt layover.

Quoting reifel (Reply 6):
You could have used another service very common with German airlines at most airports, called "Vorabend-Check-in", which means "night before check in".

Yes, I knew this and contemplated on doing it but decided to do the OLCI to make sure I got the seat I wanted. AY at least used to do it doing heavy travel periods at HEL as well - took advantage of it once or twice.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 7):
You've been downgraded? I thought you flew way too much on BT for that to happen

Nope, can't manage 60 segments per year with the cut downs on the HEL services and some other canceled routes. I'm not even sure if I can do the 30 to renew VIP - with a Gold card Star is just damn more inviting these days!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 7):
And they have Borjomi! Love it!

Yes, actually they are promoting it very heavily in the Baltics these days. For example in Estonia it is the water brand that they market in convenience stores etc.

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 8):
- Indeed, wish you had told me, would have joined you.

I thought you had exceeded all the good karma this year with your South American trip plus some other jollies and needed to reserve some for next year's 388 adventures? 
Quoting debonair (Reply 9):
Note to the editor: ARKIA 2x, Thomas Cook UK 2x

Yes, but both not exactly carriers I'd like to fly with. Well, I've flown with the UK Thomas Cook (A320 though) and that was an utterly forgettable experience. And Arkia is not European.

Quoting debonair (Reply 9):
For the price ok- otherwise, as always in winter, DE will start domestic flights soon with the B753; like HAM-MUC-HAM!

I have been looking at this option for the last couple of winters, but their schedules never matched mine. Besides it is cheaper to fly to Palma  .

Quoting debonair (Reply 9):
After long fights with their union etc., row 50ABC is the officially crew rest area (but to be honest, I saw in the past only crew bags resting there).

Ok, interesting to know, thanks! Actually at some point one of the FAs was sitting on the aisle seat on my block, resting.

Quoting burj (Reply 10):
Awesome trip report! The pictures great and it really made me laugh!

Thanks!

Quoting burj (Reply 10):
That sucks about the checkin issues and the sleeping arrangements! Maybe I'm a little pervy but I totally would have started recording the amorous couple to either a) have a great youtube video or b) shame them into stopping!

Yeah well that's not me really.

Quoting burj (Reply 10):
Ugh the Hooters at Frankfurt! That is SO embarrassing, especially having the American flags there! If remember right there is a little grocery store right across from there... was that closed? I had bought quite a few nice things to eat while I was there...

Yes, there is a grocery/convenience store right opposite. It was closed at that time, just like pretty much everything else at FRA at that hour!

Quoting The777Man (Reply 11):
Mainz looks very nice ! Seems like a good way to spend the afternoon but since I'm a spotter, I would soend it at the airpot getting new registration numbers.......

Well if you had a telescope or a pair of binoculars you could read the registrations while sitting in a beer garden next to the Rhine  
Quoting The777Man (Reply 11):
Not surprsing they did not let you thru security when your boarding pass is for the next day; same thing here in the US.

Yeah, usually not but with a departure time of 4.50 in the morning you'd think they would let you through 6-7 hours before.

Quoting gpbcroppers63 (Reply 12):
It's great that you sacrifice your sleep for our viewing pleasure.

You are welcome. Someone has to do the sacrifices, you know!

Quoting LGWflyer (Reply 13):
Would love to get on a 753, according to cabin crew on the 753 if you stand at one end of the aircraft you can see the back/front bend during flight

Really? That would be a cool (and a scary) sight to see! But somehow I do believe this.

Quoting AYA333 (Reply 14):
It´s hard to keep up on your trips and reports

Well, don't want to end up with a backlog like Markus has. Plus lots of travel in the books in November.

Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 15):
Very nice flights and great pictures of Mainz, which seems to be the place to go while waiting for the next one, especially if there is a wine party like the one you joined.

Yes, a very recommendable place.

Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 15):
B757-300, looks a great plane, I do not think I have flown any of those before; last time on one was JFK-SEA on AA, a very old looking plane, and I doubt it was the -300.

Nope, all the AA 757s are the -200 variants. And yes, very old and worn.

Quoting ROGERBCN (Reply 15):
Looking forward to the next part as BCN was under heavy rain last Sunday, so let's see what your flights were like.

Not the best of weathers there, I agree. Had some delays due to the thunderstorms in the area, but as you said, more on those in the next part...

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 16):
Based on that pic, it seems this particular Hooters location is missing the point.

And what point is that? They did have one nice waitress dressed in oh so tight hot pants, not that well endowed though but they actually had two *blokes* working the bar as well - now what the heck was that all about??


User currently offlineCaptainRed From Germany, joined Oct 2010, 720 posts, RR: 20
Reply 18, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 9460 times:

Hi P.,

thanks for yet another great report. Of course congratulations on logging the 753. Just a shame for the ungodly departure hour.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
So here’s the full itinerary, quite a crazy weekend

Wow, that's indeed a crazy routing, even for your high standards   But well done.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Neighbours:

Cool, that's the one that took me to Tallinn last month.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Guess which airline this queue belongs to (hint: it’s not airBaltic):

Oh, that's difficult, but my educated guess is FR, am I right   ?

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
(and seriously speaking - I would be more than a little suspicious at eating raw fish in a dish like this which is actually stored in warm and not refrigerated - instant food poisoning anyone?).

Exactly my first thought after I saw the sushi advertisement. Even though I do like a freshly made sushi, I would never have raw fish on board on a plane, for the obvious reasons. But being made out of chicken and duck, why not. And it indeed looks very nice, also the price seems reasonable for it.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Landing is on 07R after around 2h15mins of flight time - certainly quite a long time in a packed Dash.

Quite a long ride in a Dash, I would think they could fill at least a B735 on this route.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I spend a very nice Saturday afternoon and evening in Mainz

Good idea to go to Mainz. I passed it countless times on the autobahn but I have to admit that I never actually made it into the center.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
They had some sort of wine happening going on right next to the cathedral:

Well, not surprising since Mainz is the capital of the Rheinland-Pfalz state which also is a big wine region. Usually during this time of the year there are a lot of wine festivals in that area. Especially the ones in the smaller villages are quite nice, and with still even cheaper prices.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 1):
I don’t think this one is going to FRA, though:

Actually there is a small general aviation airport near Mainz, so it was probably heading there.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 1):
This thing was amazing:

I remember seeing that on my last visit to FRA as well. Indeed nice, something for the little boys in us   ...

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 1):
Oh, a word or fifteen about the Condor OLCI - this was one of the biggest scams I’ve ever seen - apparently there is NO way whatsoever to do OLCI without having a seat reservation. And to have a reservation you must pay.

Ouch, now that indeed is quite a rip-off. Don't really understand it, I always thought the reason for OLCI is to save money for the airlines on the check-in personal. That only makes people use the check-in desks more. Never expected anything like this on an airline like Condor.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 1):
This bird is so long that it is impossible to get a full frame photo this close.

What a nice bird. And you have managed to get some really good pictures at the night, well done.

Now looking forward to the second part of this trip.

CaptainRed


User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6939 posts, RR: 77
Reply 19, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 9453 times:

Hi P.,

nice report about your DE and 753 experience. Those planes are defintitely something special.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
The flight time was quite nasty as it was leaving at 4.50 on a Sunday morning

Ah, this is inhuman!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Well, of course some months later there was an equipment change and I found the flight to be scheduled as an A320 instead... damn!

Well, that's bad - but it doesn't surprise me considering that you booked some months ago.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Optiontown was offering an upgrade to Premium class for around 50 EUR, but as the reviews of Spanair’s Premium weren’t very impressive either I decided to save my money for something better.

I guess I would have tried it.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
In front of YL-BAE of course - their oldest example and thus the one I’ve had the chance to log the most times - this will already be my sixth flight with her!

Horrible!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I hate raw fish so am normally not a big sushi eater - but luckily this dish is made out of duck and chicken (and seriously speaking - I would be more than a little suspicious at eating raw fish in a dish like this which is actually stored in warm and not refrigerated - instant food poisoning anyone?).

I like sushi, but only if it's fresh. I agree with you here.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Oh, a word or fifteen about the Condor OLCI - this was one of the biggest scams I’ve ever seen - apparently there is NO way whatsoever to do OLCI without having a seat reservation. And to have a reservation you must pay. Money. Sheckels. Dolores. Euros, you know. So pay I did - 10 EUR for a bog standard economy window seat on the penultimate row (last row was completely blocked, more on this later) - there is something cool in having seat 49A on a narrowbody I think . As a sidenote the load judging from the seat map didn’t look too good, and considering DE was still selling 49 EUR seats for this flight less than a week before departure it probably wouldn’t be either! Still, that OLCI scam got me into a rather bad mood...

Well, even 59 Euro - including the seat reservation - is not really expensive for such a flight, to be honest.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
B757-300 D-ABOH

Nice, I had that one last year.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Condor motif:

I cannot believe what they did - the cabin looks awful now. It used to be much nicer:

Premium Meal & Palma Spotting: MUC-PMI, DE 757-300 (by PlaneHunter Jun 6 2010 in Trip Reports)

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
The second part will contain my return journey from Palma via BCN, TXL, FRA and CPH plus a comparison between two Spanish carriers - Vueling and Spanair.

Ah, I cannot wait to read about these Spanish premium brands...  

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Then again I’m a bit buggered that I basically slept through the whole experience, but with a flight schedule like that what can do you.

Exactly - I would have been surprised if you hadn't slept under these circumstances.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
The little I experienced of DE service seemed to be good, although that OLCI thing with the seat reservation left a very sour taste in my mouth (and some more of this in part 2!) - that’s something I’d expect from FR et al but not really DE who is perceived to be a quality carrier.

Well, it's a holiday carrier which is under pressure by LCCs like many others. We really shouldn't wonder about the consequences of the general low-cost mentality.


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlinegpbcroppers63 From Ireland, joined Jan 2008, 524 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 9420 times:

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 17):
You are welcome. Someone has to do the sacrifices, you know!

You're vey noble. I look forward to reading about your next sacrifice  



According to one of my colleagues, my problem is that I'm addicted to travel!
User currently offlinegabrielchew From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 3362 posts, RR: 12
Reply 21, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 9284 times:

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 17):
Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 7):
And they have Borjomi! Love it!
Yes, actually they are promoting it very heavily in the Baltics these days. For example in Estonia it is the water brand that they market in convenience stores etc.

Well, I guess with Georgia still being in Russia's bad books, Borjomi needs to push in other markets. Shame it's still virtually impossible to buy in the UK



http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights:LCY-ARN-AMS-LGW,STN-OTP-AMS-YUL,YQB-JFK-LAX-DUS-STN,LGW-DXB-BKK-HKG-
User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 16
Reply 22, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 9248 times:

Hi P.

Another nice trip report, thanks for sharing! This report I followed with a paticular interest since the 753 has been on my to-fly list for quite a while now. I'm glad you where able to log it!



Greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlinesultanils From Belgium, joined Mar 2010, 1788 posts, RR: 30
Reply 23, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 9240 times:

Hello Petteri,

I was very curious about this report as I wanted to know how your encounter with 'FRA at night' was like. Outstanding wasn't it  At least you are the person who can sleep almost anywhere. I would be just closing my eyes, my mind never goes to sleep   That said, I am even more impressed with that B753, it's like the mini version of the A346. Although, 'mini' is not the most appropriate term...

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Hunting for rarish plane types can be hard business
Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
quite a crazy weekend

To say the least lol!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
This is Finland in November, 7 AM - no wonder we are such a depressed nation:

Hey come on, don't be so hard on yourself. In Belgium things look just the same at this time of year at this time of day!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Since being downgraded from Executive to VIP just five days previously

Huh? How come? Because you don't take that many flights anymore on BT?

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
there’s a very nice vortex effect visible

What a cool effect!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Once the BOB service gets underway I do what I already decided on the previous flight and order the sushi box plus a nicely chilled can of Aldaris

That tray is packed to the brim. Lucky you did not encounter some turbulence or the contents of your beer would be spread out in the cabin.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Landing is on 07R after around 2h15mins of flight time - certainly quite a long time in a packed Dash.

2h15mins? I laugh at that: I did 3h  

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Oh yes:

What a culinary delight. The green freckles make the difference...

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Well, there actually is one vacant one but the next bench is taken over by a young couple very well into their foreplay at this stage so I decide to skip it as trying to sleep next to an intercourse-in-progress is not exactly my kind of thing (babe!).

   Some people are jusy plain - not plane - crazy and don't have any sense of decency lol!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
I think I need to go back and do another flight during the daytime to sample some more...

If timings are good, count me in!

Sultanils



In thrust we trust.
User currently offlineAlwaysOnAPlane From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2010, 305 posts, RR: 2
Reply 24, posted (3 years 1 month 1 week 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 9013 times:

Hi P,
I have been waiting for this report to appear, happy to read the first part.

I remember you posting about this 753 flight on FB and I though about you spending time at FRA during the wee small hours. Well, it has to be done sometimes to log rare types.

I really like the Sushi idea on BT, looks really filling and definitely something quirky. 2hrs on a dash-8 is more than enough for anyone.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Thread starter):
Here’s a place for Lee - maybe you should come here to sample next time you have a long FRA layover, mate:

Ha ha yes, I will make a note. I presume a cow showing you its ass at a burger joint isn't such a bad thing, rump burger anyone?

In fact, the whole idea of passing a layover in Mainz is very appealing. Looks very good coupled with the views of aircraft on final into FRA.

So the 753 is logged. Cool. No surprise you crashed out for most of the flight at that hour.
Really looking forward to part two P.
Cheers, Lee.


25 The777Man : I prrefer to see the action up close.... Not really. Perhaps if the flight left at 0100 or 0200 but not any later than that. The777Man
26 LGWflyer : Yeah, it would be an interesting sight to see! Can't say the same for someone waiting for the toilet who is scared of flying haha.
27 Post contains images OA260 : Hey nice report as usual. Why is the SU TU134 at RIX in the first place? Nice sushi I get the one in M&S and its a Tuna one which is very tasty wi
28 Post contains images egilsml : Hello Petteri. As always a fun and enjoyable read. You and Markus made my Sunday with new and fresh trip reports Keep on flying, and typing. MVH Egil
29 Palmjet : Good evening FF I was reading through your latest report and I had yet to come across a B717. Thankfully that was soon rectified and not only 1 717, b
30 ba319-131 : - Possibly true, but keep me posted for interesting stuff such as this, wife is AOK with trips at the moment, though likely to change at any time I s
31 Post contains images volvair : Hi FF, great trip report and congratulations of course on logging the 753 on DE. I myself don't actually know if I have been on one of them. Had a MUC
32 Luxair747SP : Hi P , very nice report about the 753. This Dash flight seems to be one of the longest around in Europe. Also the sushi on BT don't look bad. The beer
33 Post contains images SloAir : Hey FF, congrats on catching the 753. If only the flight would depart a few hours later so you can get a decent sleep and at least enjoy the flight a
34 FlyingFinn76 : Hi guys, Good to see more comments, thank you! Correcto. Yeah, not a bad dish at all and good value for money. It started as a 735 but recently more a
35 knightsofmalta : Hi FlyingFinn76 Thanks for yet another one of your interesting and entertaining reports. They're always a pleasure to read. You obviously seem to like
36 Mike89406 : Sounds like you had a lot of fun. I love the 753 and flew one with DL recently. At any rate looking forward to more of your trips. Mike
37 signol : Hello there, Excellent report as usual! It looks quite an expensive flight for you, but then with that many legs it's ok, and they all count towards s
38 FlyingFinn76 : Hi all, Good to see more comments. Thank you. Thanks, glad you liked it. Yes, there's quite nothing like good German Wurst. But it is not mash actuall
39 LXM83 : Hi FlyingFinn76 Thanks for yet another great report, enjoyed reading it. Ouch, yes very nasty indeed! But I agree with your decision not to book a hot
40 Post contains images infodesk : Hi P, Crikey, I seem to have such a backlog of reports of yours to read. You're flying too much! Anyway, glad you caught the 753, it made the early st
41 Post contains images 717Flyer : Hi P, Congratulations for scoring 757-300! It seems you enjoyed catching it even though flight timings weren't the best this time. I also had a good t
42 Post contains images airbuseric : Great report P, and I'm glad to hear that you've finally logged the -300 as well! I understand why you made this effort to get this trip done despite
43 photoshooter : Hi FlyingFinn76 Nice trip report you've got there! I like the way you combine airlines and airports. That's interesting, I've never seen that before..
44 Post contains images FlyingFinn76 : Hi guys, Good to see more comments, thank you! Well, you have to use up the fares to their fullest! The spare run coming up on Finnish Independence Da
45 Post contains images Parton87 : Hello Petteri! Thanks for the great story. Nice to catch such a rare bird like the 753! Beautiful pictures from Mainz! It looks like a place worth of
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