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HEL-LHR-JNB-MPM And Back On AY, BA, And SA In Y  
User currently offlineteme82 From Finland, joined Mar 2007, 1873 posts, RR: 2
Posted (4 years 2 months 4 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 9287 times:
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AY 831 A320-200 OH-LXD
08:00 Seat 13A

The flight was on time on departure and about 20 minutes early at LHR. During the flight I was served with this rather dry sandwich. It was labeled as turkey cheese sandwich. And since I got some food allergies with certain food ingredients I had all my food pre-ordered on all my flights. We landed on RW 27R and were soon at the gate. But there was some issues with the gate so it took around 5 minutes to the bridge to be connected.

The transit in LHR was smooth. The security had moderate queues and I smoothly passed them. Then I ventured the cafeteria called Espresso in the southern end of T5. There I got a pot of tea. There I had great view to RW 27L that was used for departures. Managed to see SQ's A388 and some other heavies. Since I got almost 7 hours time to spend there I browsed the shops and got a burger in the J D Wetherspoon – 'The Crown Rivers' restaurant & bar. It was just the ting that I needed. After finishing my burger I went to see if the HMW had any Top Gear DVD's on sale but they didn't. So no DVD's for the red eye flight. After that the gate for my flight to JNB was announced.

BA 055 B-744 G-CIVS
17:50 Seat 44A

So finally got to the port B44 in T5B and G-CIVS was there to waiting to us to take us to JNB. The flight time was around 10 hours and 45 minutes. There was slight delay since someone had pared some stairs right behind us and it took around 10 minutes to get them clear. The departures were moved to RW 27R so i managed to witness the long queues on M25! I was lucky enough to get nice elderly couple seated next to me. The flight was basic red eye flight and for my surprise there were no heavy turbulence around equator and no visible thunder storms. The service in our flight was good. The FA assigned knew her trade and she was very professional. And cheerful. The dinner was chicken paella with green salad and cold porridge. The paella was surprisingly good. For drink I just got some still water. I could had some red wine but I was already finished my meal when the drink trolly arrived. Perhaps I should have requested the wine when I was severed the meal. For breakfast I got warm breakfast ham with beans, mushrooms and spinach. Again the same issue with drinks. But this time it was good thing that I had finished my meal since drinking the coffee and looking out side to see the sunrise was amazing.

When I got to JNB I needed to go through the transfers again. This time there were no long queues like LHR had in security...

SA 142 A319-100 ZS-SFL
09:20 Seat 22A

After I got pass security I checked-in to my flight to MPM. It was rather simple deal and I got my boarding card quickly. I did have some time to browse the shops in JNB but didn't get anything since I would be back there within a week. So I went straight down to my gate that was A24. The gate was a bus gate so it was typical gate area where all the buss gates were. After the gate was opened I got to the buss and we were on our way to the stand where ZS-SFL was waiting for us. The flight was almost full. There were two larger groups on board. One from South Africa and the other from Brazil. My seat 22A was again window seat. So again I could see the wing in action. Next to me was nice South African lady who was on business trip to Maputo. There were a snack service on board I had already pre-ordered non-lactose meal so I got vegetable sandwich. It was far better than the one AY served to me earlier.

When we arrived to MPM I was pleased to see that the new international terminal was operational. They had nice modern facilities, more about them later. The terminal's arrivals floor isn't big. Two baggage reclaim belts and they were poorly designed allowing the incoming luggage to knock the existing luggage on the ground from the belt. After I got my bag it and my camera back bag got x-rayed before clearing the customs. Reasons for this are still big mystery to me. So your ques is as good as mine.

On my holiday in Mozambique I hanged around Maputo and we took road trip to Krueger national park in South Africa. Saw almost every species that I wanted expect the big cats. I was told that you can only see them on the dusk or in the late afternoon if you are lucky.

Maputo international airport is rather new Chinese made, and I really mean made, airport in Maputo. They have financed it and the workforce building it was Chinese. They are currently building the domestic terminal. There are huge walls and gates with barbed wire on top of them. The terminal is clean and AC is working fine. The check-in area is not so large and there is 13 counters. All monitors are modern flat screens and the systems seems to be operating fine. There are no free WiFi in MPM so that's a small minus. There are actually few airports that offer free WiFi. HEL is one of them. The check-in was smooth. The agent was friendly and checked my bag all the way to HEL. There are some tax-free shops and one cafeteria in the transit area in MPM the prizes are around the same what they are in other international airports around the world. The AC in this side was working but still I managed to break a sweat writing this report. The view from the windows are ok. On the airside windows you can see the small ramp and the only runway. The terminal is small only two gates with jet bridges. The Gate 2 is the only gate that can handle A332 that comes there 4x week from LIS. The Gate 2 has two bridges allowing simultaneous boarding of J and Y passangers.

SA 145 A319-100 ZS-SFM
15:55 Seat A20

Finally I saw the SA's A319 landing on the only RW at MPM. They taxied to the gate 2. The boarding started at 15:10 and we were ready for departure at 15:30. The flight time was around 45 minutes. This time SA meal was vegetable wrap and it was good. In the middle of the flight we got some t-storm cells near us and the Captain advised us that there were heavy t-storm activity around JNB. We got to holding pattern and we waited there around 10 minutes. The landing was smooth no turbulence to speak off. When we got to JNB we taxied to the domestic terminal's gate and we got bus ride to the international side. The transit was smooth. There were no queue on the BA desk and I got checked-in all the way to HEL! So then pass the security and this time I got stuck behind one business man who had three bags and a ton of clothes on him. Luckily I got pulled to new line so I managed to get pass security quickly.

BA 56 B744 G-CIVW
20:15 Seat 49K

Boarding started on time and I got my seat again in the rear of the plane. The seat next to me was empty and the there were nice elderly lady sitting in the aisle seat. This time there were drink service before dinner so I got my self red vine and asked if I could get another with my meal. The dinner's main course was pasta with cheese and some vegetables and the salad was composed of fresh vegetables and green salad. For dessert I got fruit cocktail. After I was done I got GT and tried to get some sleep. I woke up around southern parts of Chad because we got some turbulence. I had found Top Gear DVD box in JNB so I took my Mac Book Pro out and started to view them. Managed to see the first DVD and then I got my breakfast. It was nice mix of potatoes, tomatoes, mushrooms and spinach. Some juice and coffee was the drinks for me. With coffee I had the cupcake it was nice. I think they used a bit too much alcohol. The taste was really strong. Then it was time to land. We were around 10 minutes early and landed to RW 27R. We got stand from T5C so had to take the underground train again to get to my transfer buss to T3 where my flight to HEL would leave.

Big version: Width: 1000 Height: 562 File size: 560kb
AY 3126 A319-100 OH-LVH
07:30 Seat 12F

The security in T3 had only light queues so I got pass them quickly. The stores were mainly closed at T3 at this time so I just waked around to stretch my legs. During my walks I spotted the SA)">OH-LVH at the gate 24 so I got a seat and waited there for the boarding to start. The flight was to my surprise rather full. We took off from RW 27R and made 180 degree turn after M25 to the left. The flight time was around 2 hours 30 minutes. I continued to my DVD's and soon when the service started I got my snack. I have to say that I know that AY is trying to find ways to save money but do they have to cut back on the size of the bread roll's. The one I got in this flight was half of the one I got when we left HEL! Although I got small bag of fruits I felt it wasn't good enough. The weather was fine and when I was finished with my DVD I had some time to gaze the views over the Baltic sea. Soon we arrived to the Gulf of Finland and we were faced with cloud cover so there were not so much to see out side. We landed to RW 4L in HEL and headed to gate 30. For some weird reason from there we got a buss ride to the terminal. Don't know why we had to take the buss. So I headed to the passport check and used the automated line. Some reason two of the lines were unable to read my passport and the third line was the lucy one. Then I got to the baggage claim area to get my bag and it was already waiting for me so it was smooth ending.

I do hope that you have enjoyed this trip report from me. Sorry it's my first so any input is welcome.

[Edited 2012-02-27 04:11:59]

Flying high and low
3 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineHELyes From Finland, joined Oct 2010, 1319 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (4 years 2 months 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 8224 times:

Hi, thanks for the TR! Good to see more Finnish A.netters writing trip reports  
Quoting teme82 (Thread starter):
we took road trip to Krueger national park in South Africa

Oh how I envy you, Krueger is on my must see list.

Quoting teme82 (Thread starter):

Maputo international airport is rather new

I've heard it's rather comfortable airport.

It would had been nice too see more pics and using Photobucket or similar makes the report a lot more reader friendly.
And I would recommend to write a short introduction first, for orientation.

I hope we'll see more reports from you!

User currently offlineteme82 From Finland, joined Mar 2007, 1873 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (4 years 2 months 4 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 7504 times:
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Quoting HELyes (Reply 1):
I've heard it's rather comfortable airport.

Yeah it is. And it was nice place to be.

Quoting HELyes (Reply 1):

It would had been nice too see more pics and using Photobucket or similar makes the report a lot more reader friendly.
And I would recommend to write a short introduction first, for orientation.

I hope we'll see more reports from you!

Yeah still learning the art of TR's   I do have some space on my ISP's side  

Flying high and low
User currently offlinesignol From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2007, 3094 posts, RR: 7
Reply 3, posted (4 years 2 months 3 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 6947 times:

Hi Teme82,

nice report for a first effort! My only criticism is that the photos are a bit small.

As a regular visitor to SA it's good to see people's impressions. Though I've yet to visit Mozambique, would definitely like to soon!

Thanks again


Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
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