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AMS-INN, MXP-MRS-LIL-TLS & BIQ-RTM On HV, ZK & AF  
User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Posted (1 year 11 months 4 weeks ago) and read 7350 times:

Flying in Austria, Italy and France on HV, ZK and AF
AMS-INN, MXP-MRS-LIL-TLS, BIQ-RTM


Hello all, and welcome to my latest trip report. This report will feature several flights I took last august, as part of my main summer holiday in Italy and France. This trip had been in a planning stage for quite a while. Besides flying, I’m also a bit of a railway buff, and I love seeing a country by train. It’s excellent to way to see the countryside, enjoy the landscape and dream away. You can cover several cities or regions in a small amount of time, and you don’t have to worry about driving or directions. I like it.

So anyway, there were a number of railway lines I had been meaning to ride. This included the Brenner Pass between Innsbruck and Verona, and I also wanted to spent some time in several Italian cities. A second line I wanted to ride was the railway in France between Toulouse and the Atlantic Coast via Lourdes and Pau, a scenic ride near the feet of the Pyrenees. I would then end up in Biarritz, a beach resort town I’ve visited several times before and I am quite fond of.

This could be combined with some interesting flights as well. Flying into Innsbruck (INN) had been on my wish list for quite a while, so that would make for a interesting start point. Since a few years the Dutch low-cost and holiday carrier Transavia flies there two-weekly in the summer (and multiple times in the winter between several Dutch airports and INN). To get from Italy to France I found a nice Air France flight from Milan Malpensa (MXP) to Marseille (MRS) operated by an ATR from their regional affiliate Arlinair. This flight would depart in the morning (08.35), and there was a conveniently timed afternoon flight from MRS to Toulouse (TLS) operated by Air France Regional, which also gave me some to visit Marseille, a city I hadn’t yet been to. From Biarritz (BIQ) Transavia operates a three-weekly service back to the Netherlands, to Rotterdam (RTM) to be exact.

So that’s what I booked early May. However, in June I was called by AF notifying me that the MRS-TLS route had been cancelled. AF had been starting and cancelling quite a few routes out of MRS because of their recent ‘Province Bases’ strategy, but the MRS-TLS had been around for quite a few years so I was somewhat surprised that the routes was now axed. The agent of course offered the usual connections via Paris (both Orly and CDG) but those didn’t appeal. I’ve been to CDG several times already – and two more coming up this year – and I had also already booked a trip to visit ORY for the first time later this year. So I inquired if she had connections via another airport besides the two Paris airports. I expected something like Lyon and Bordeaux to come up, but to my surprise she said “I have a connection via Lille for you’. Now that most certainly did appeal. The airport in LIL is located next to the Brussels-Paris TGV line so I had seen the airport a few times from the train already. It also only served a few times a day, so it is hard to normally fit into a trip. The flight would depart a few hours earlier, but I still would have ample time to visit Marseille. There was also an interesting change for the MXP-MRS flight. A few weeks before the flight I noticed that the flight would now be operated by Air Corsica instead of Airlinair; a carrier that is bit more rare to fly on then Arlinair!

So in the end, the trip looked like this (courtesy of the Great Circle Mapper):


Saturday August 11th 2012
Transavia Flight HV6609
Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (AMS) – Innsbruck Kranebitten Airport (ZRH)
Boeing 737-700
Seat 23F


164th overall flight
9th flight on Transavia
14th flight on a Boeing 737-700 (36th flight on an Boeing 737 series)
53rd visit to AMS, and 2nd visit to INN

2nd time flying the AMS-INN route, 1st time in this direction
Departure Time (Scheduled/Actual): 13.25 / 13.26
Arrival Time (Scheduled/Actual): 15.00 / 14.51
Block time (Scheduled / Actual): 1.35 / 1.27
Flight duration: 1 hour, 1 minute
Mileage: 456 mn

Flying Transavia in the middle of the summer season can be a bit of a hassle. With Transavia being the country’s prominent holiday carrier, with flights from Amsterdam to basically every European holiday destination you can think of, checking in with Transavia can be a lengthy experience. With that in mind, I arrived at the airport at 11.30 am, just about two hours before departure. Even though I had pre-purchased a seat (a bit expensive at E7.50, but I wanted to be sure I had a seat in the back on the right side), and also already checked in online. Transavia uses two rows for check-in at AMS, one row with counters for those that have checked-in and wish to ‘drop a bag’ , and one row for passengers that still need to be checked-in. Both rows had quite a few people waiting in line, about the same number of people for both rows, I estimated.

Ground handling, above and below the wing, is handled by parent company KLM at Amsterdam. At the start of the line for the bag drop a KLM agent was making sure all passengers in line actually had a boarding pass, and also tagged all carry-on luggage with a KLM/Skyteam branded ‘approved cabin baggage tag’. Even though the line seemed long and slow, it took about 30 minutes before it was my turn, which was quicker than expected by the looks of the line. When it was my turn, my bag was checked efficiently down towards the vast complex that is Schiphol baggage sorting facility. After this, security was, in spite of many non-experienced flyers such as families with children, surprisingly swift for the time of the year and took about 15 minutes.

Busy scene at the check-in area

Since I still had about 40 minutes to spare, I headed towards the B pier, from where you have an excellent view of the Southwest runway. An Arkefly Boeing 767 has just landed.



Boarding commenced a little before one, basically one time that is. Immediately a huge crowd gather before the jetbridge. I decided to remain seated just a little longer, no need to rush here. Despite the queue boarding went pretty orderly, and before I knew I was on board. I immediately noticed that this was one of the Transavia aircrafts that has already been refitted with new slimline seats, in order to create a few extra rows in the aircraft. These news (all green) leather seats will gradually replace the well-known very colorful cloth seats that Transavia used to have. Legroom with new seats was pretty tight I must say, tighter as I could remember from the old seats. They also felt very uncomfortable with a limited recline and a very straight position for the back. No problem for this short-ish flight to Innsbruck, but less fun on a long flight to Greece or the Canary Islands.
At 13.20, five minutes before the scheduled departure time, the captain came on the PA and announced that we would be almost ready for departure and we were just awaiting one more passenger. As far I could see the flight was almost completely full. The captain also mentioned a flight time of 1 hour and 15 minutes, with good flying conditions along the way with partly cloudy skies. We would depart from the Polderbaan – the remote runway at AMS – take off to the North, make a right turn past Amsterdam and then head towards Germany, entering German airspace near Arnhem. Push back was almost on time, at 13.26. A long, 17 minute, taxi followed, with the Aeroflot A321 and a KLM MD-11 leading the way.

Today’s aircraft, parked at gate C18

And taken from the front

Fellow passengers queuing up

My view this afternoon. Looking towards a bigger blue brother

Tight legroom on board this Boeing 737-700

Cabin view

Pushing back. An Aeroflot is also taxiing out

Taking off!

Amsterdam in the far distance

The Amsterdam harbour


Turning towards the East, which gave a good view of downtown Amsterdam, although partially covered by the clouds


It got more cloudy once we approached cruising altitude

Flying over Germany. I was able to make out Dusseldorf Airport and Frankfurt Airport


Southwest Germany



Service was as usual on Transavia. First BOB service, from where I purchased a coffee, followed by the sale of other items, which - also as usual – hardly anyone buys. At 14.25 I noticed that we had slowly began our descent. Around this time, the captain was once again on the mike announcing that we had followed a route over Germany: DUS-FRA-STR-AND OLD: Munich - Riem (MUC / EDDM) (closed), Germany">MUC, and that we soon be turning more south into Austria. Remaining flight time was about 25 minutes, which meant an on time arrival.

Slowly beginning our descent

Into the clouds

Land and mountains visible down there. This is when things started to get interesting
Flying into the valley. Amazing views along the way




Downtown Innsbruck and the river Inn clearly visible


Knowing that the airport was West of the city I anticipated that we would be touching down soon. Imagine my surprise when we leveled out I suddenly saw us passing by the airport


Followed by an amazing 180 degrees turn back towards the airport


Short finals


And touching down with some very heavy breaking. English visitors on stand



So I must say that landing in Innsbruck was quite a thrill. Definitely recommended to all! Disembarking was quickly through front and rear stair and before I knew it I was in the arrivals area waiting for my bag. When that arrived I proceeded towards the small observation deck, to watch the aircraft taking off for its return flight back to Amsterdam.

My aircraft on the apron. The Easyjet and Flybe aircraft are heading towards the runway

Easyjet taking off

The Transavia was now joined on the apron by an Austrian companion

And Transavia taking off, back to Amsterdam

Wednesday August 15th 2012
Air France Flight AF2067 (operated by Air Corsica)
Milan Malpensa Airport (MXP) – Marseille Provence Airport (MRS)
ATR72-500
Seat 12F


165th overall flight
8th flight on Air France
4th flight on an ATR72 (4th flight on an ATR42/72 series)
5th visit to MXP, and 1st visit to MRS
1st time flying the MXP-MRS route

Departure Time (Scheduled/Actual): 08.35 / 08.34
Arrival Time (Scheduled/Actual): 09.45 / 09.52
Block time (Scheduled / Actual): 1.10 / 1.18
Flight duration: 1 hour, 13 minutes
Mileage: 239 nm

So, after a few enjoyable days in Austria and Italy it was time to get flying again. With an early-ish departure from Malpensa, I had elected to spent the night at a Malpensa Airport hotel. I stayed in the Hotel Cervo, nothing special, but it had a bed and was affordable for those – such as myself – that are on a budget. The hotel’s shuttle – in fact operated by one of the rental car companies – dropped me of at the terminal building at around 7.15 am.

Nowadays, Malpesa is no longer directly served by Air France and KLM. The flights to Amsterdam and Paris Charles de Gaulle have been completely moved to Linate Airport. Only AF’s flight to the regional airports Lyon, Nantes (operated by Régional) and Marseille (operated by Air Corsica) still depart from Malpensa. With only the Marseille flight departing around this time, only one check-in desk was opened, staffed by an Alitalia agent. Ahead of me was a small group Asian girls, holding Singapore Airlines boarding passes. I guess SQ interlines passengers to MRS also via Malpensa (the SIN flight arrives in the early morning at MXP). After the Asian ladies it was my turn, and my bag was checked in by one the most uninterested agents I have encountered in a very, very, very long time.

Security was pretty quick, and I soon found myself in the departure terminal of Milan Malpensa, which starts with – not so uncommon unfortunately – a big tax free area. Next call of order here was breakfast, which I had in a small cafe. On the television the news was broadcasted, which showed a report about Windjet, the Italian airline that went bust the day before. I had at one time during the planning stage actually considered flying them during this trip, which would have meant that I would have been stranded now too. Glad that I made another itinerary in the end.

As you can imagine, we would be departing from a busgate. When I arrived around boarding time there were not a lot of people, a light load today? The earlier mentioned check-in agent was now also managing the boarding process, and unfortunately her interest and mood had not improved.

Check in area at MXP

One of the few good things about MXP is the large windows in the main (landside) terminal building, with excellent apron views.

Breakfast. I’ll miss those excellent Italian coffees.

The telly with a report about Windjet

One of the three piers at Malpensa. To the right is the building where all the busgates are located
Arriving at the aircraft by bus. An Air Corsica in full Air France livery, with an ‘operated by’ sticker still showing the old name of Air Corsica: CCM Airlines

One of the unique features of the ATR: boarding always through a rear door.



And it turned out to be a light load indeed, I counted 22 passengers, which meant I had the entire row, all 4 seats, to myself. Two cabin crew, a middle aged male and middle aged female, both wearing Air Corsica uniforms. No word from the captain, but a flight time was mentioned by the female FA in her welcome speech: 1 hour and 10 minutes. We were welcomed on board “this Air France flight operated by Air Corsica in cooperation with Alitalia and other Skyteam partners” Quite the mouthful. Manual safety demo when we still on the stand, followed by a short taxi for a take-off in Southerly direction.

Unfortunately, most windows were rather dirty, with limited my photo-making opportunities. A fellow Air France flight, operated by Airlinair, had just arrived from Lyon.

Good looking cabin, with a light load

No Air Corsica service on this flight, but the usual Air France service for breakfast flights: a croissant. I required some more caffeine as well.



The flight itself was uneventful, but had some great scenery along the way. Most of the photos were not so good unfortunately because of the dirty windows. After takeoff to the south we made a sharp turn to the Northwest, basically following a flight path Milan-Turin-Nice Marseille. Having the entire row at my disposal, I could switch from the right sides of the aircraft (view of the Alps) and the left side (view of the coastline including a splendid view of Monaco and Nice). Approach into Marseille was to the East, which meant we made a downwind approach. This added a few more minutes to the flight time, and we arrived about 10 minutes late.

The only photo that did look okay: view of Marseille Airport.

Wednesday August 15th 2012
Air France Flight AF7616
Marseille Provence Airport (MRS) – Lille Lesquin Airport (LIL)
Airbus A319
Seat 5F


166th overall flight
9th flight on Air France
19th flight on an Airbus A319 (44th flight on an Airbus A320 Series)
2nd visit to MRS, and 1st visit to LIL
1st time flying the MRS-LIL route

Departure Time (Scheduled/Actual): 15.15 / 15.25
Arrival Time (Scheduled/Actual): 16.50 / 16.44
Block time (Scheduled / Actual): 1.35 / 1.19
Flight duration: 1 hour, 7 minutes
Mileage: 502 mm

Right, so I arrived with the flight from Milan at around 10.00 am, and the next flight up to Lille wasn’t leaving until 15.15, which gave some time to enjoy Marseille. Not wanted to carry around my large bag all the time, I went to see if I could already check my bag. Air France operates three check-in area’s at Marseille: one area for non-Schengen flights, one area for Schengen flights, and one area for domestic flights. I proceeded to the latter. A few desk where open there, mostly bag drops for economy passengers, which had a small queue, but fortunately also an Elite desk (or Sky Priority, as they nowadays call it). The rather friendly agent over there confirmed what I had though, check-in was not yet open. She could print my boarding passes, which she promptly did, but baggage could only be accepted two hours before departure. There was a luggage storing facility, but they wanted an absurd E15 for 4 hours, which I found too expensive. I did coughed up the E12 for a roundtrip on the Airport bus that dropped me of at the Marseille St. Charles train station, from where I did some sightseeing. I arrived back at the airport just after 13.00 hours.

Only to find out that the airport was basically deserted. It seemed that there was a total lack of flights arriving and departing between 11.00 and 15.00, and most passengers for the flights after 3pm had not yet arrived at the airport. I once again proceeded to the Sky Priority counter, that was now manned by an also very friendly gentleman. I first asked him to change my seat assignment from an A window seat to an F window seat, as I noticed that a few departing flights making a nice Northerly turn after departure, so an F seat would give me a good view over Marseille. The agent then checked my bag all the way through to Toulouse. Both boarding passes and the baggage receipt were put into a nice “you have a connecting flight” folder, something I have never received before on an intra-Europe connection, let alone a European domestic flight. Great touch. No line at all for security either, so I was in the departure area in no time at all.

Domestic check-in hall at Marseille

Deserted departure lounge at MRS. Nice replica of an old aircraft

Great views from the terminal. I liked this part of the airport. Very bright and spacious, and some light jazz music playing as well. Pretty common to have music in American airports, but I’ve hardly come across in at European airports

View of the empty appron

Boarding pass and folder

The A319 that will be doing the honors today

It seemed that there was small departure bank between 15.00 and 16.00 hours, with flights to Prague, Nantes, Paris and Barcelona also leaving around that time. It therefore got a bit busier.



Boarding should have started at 14.45, and all the other flights were boarding by now. Nothing was happening at our gate though. Around 14.55 an announcement was made, only in French and I could not clearly hear it. But most other passengers remained seated and didn’t look worried, so I assumed it was just a small delay. And indeed, around 15.05 I noticed that two UM’s went onboard, and at 15.10 general boarding began. Everybody jumped to the gate, but boarding was done in zones, and this was also enforced thoroughly by the two agents handling the flight, so the boarding process went pretty orderly in the end. Upon entering the aircraft, there was a box of refreshing towels at everyone’s disposal, very good, nice extra touch from Air France here. In the end we pushed at 15.25, only 15 minutes late, so heads up here for the ground and cabin crew for boarding the aircraft this quick. The captain came on the PA and apologized for the delay, apparently some extra technical checks had to be done before we could depart. He also announced a flight time of 1 hour and 15 minutes, pretty short compared to the 1 hour and 35 minute block time, so either some tailwinds here, or padded schedules.

Refreshing towel. The table is a tad dirty though.

Decent enough legroom here

Pushing back.

Heading to the end (or start) of the runway.

And taking off!

Marseille in the far distance.

Bridge of the TGV line visible just above the engine.

French landscape and some scattered clouds.


Standard service on shorter AF and domestic AF flights: Sucre ou Sale and a drink. Sucre this time, with a coffee.

Thick cloud layer took over as we headed North.

Descending over Northern France, landscape now and then visible between the clouds.

Finally through the clouds

Almost there.

Passing over the TGV line, from where I had seen the airport a few times before

Touching down! Good view of the terminal building, with also a Ryanair 737 and Régional Embraer Jet visible.

Régional has a maintance base here at LIL, newly built for the Embraer 170/190’s.

Saying goodbye. Weather definitely was not as good as it was in Marseille.

Baggage reclaim. LIL is not set up for connecting pax, but I was planning on going landside anyway.

Only a few arriving flights this afternoon and evening.

And when I was looking outside I suddenly noticed the luggage from the MRS flight coming by. Three carts, and the last cart had only one bag: mine. I’m guessing I was the only connecting passenger here

Wednesday August 15th 2012
Air France Flight AF5510 (operated by Régional)
Lille Lesquin Airport (NCE) – Toulouse Blagnac Airport (TLS)
Embraer 170
Seat 18F


167th overall flight
10th flight on Air France
3rd flight on an Embraer 170 (11th flight on an Embraer E-Jet series)
2nd visit to LIL and 1st visit to TLS
1st time flying the LIL-TLS route

Departure Time (Scheduled/Actual): 18.05 / 18.02
Arrival Time (Scheduled/Actual): 19.35 / 19.31
Block time (Scheduled / Actual): 1.30 / 1.29
Flight duration: 1 hour, 19 minutes
Mileage: 485 nm

So I exited the baggage claim area and entered the landside area of Lille Airport. Lille is a pretty small airport, with only one building, with an arrivals area to the left, a café in the middle and the departures area to the right. Although LIL only sees about 20 flights a day, 5 of them were now departing in a 1 hour – 1,5 timeframe, so the place was pretty much packed. Security was pretty swift nonetheless, and I was pretty quickly in the departure lounge, which consisted of a number of jet bridge gates, and a few busgates.

Arrivals

Café and a must-have-a-Relay-in-a-French-Airport

Departures. The long queue at the back is for check-in for a Transavia France charter to Djerba

Look at the terminal building.

Some disturbing clouds are approaching. There was also a pretty strong wind

Airside

Departures today AND tomorrow!

Small and large Embraer aircraft

The A319 I arrived on is departing back to Marseille. In front my next ride: an Embraer 170



Boarding commenced straight on time, and went pretty quickly with what appeared to be a light load. Two business friendly FA’s on board, male and female. A rather annoying recording was played almost continuously during the boarding process, welcoming us on board this Embraer aircraft operated by Regional. In my recollection of earlier Regional flights this was only played once or twice. Just before departure the captain was on the PA briefly, welcoming us on board and announcing a 1 hour and 30 minutes flight time with some headwinds. As this flight was also blocked at 1.30 minutes, it seemed that my flight from Marseille indeed might have been quicker due to tailwinds.

Pushing back. Fellow E170 (to Nice) is heading towards the runway

Lining up

And taking off!

Quite some turbulence during climb out through these clouds

Clearing the clouds. In the distance I counted at least six other planes, two slightly visible in the pictures. Busy skies above France


Sucre on the way in, Salé on the way out

The remainder of the flight went by pretty uneventful, and before we knew descent had begun, passing by some impressive cloud formations


Clearing the clouds once more. Grey weather here, not something one hopes and expects during summer in Southern France

Toulouse in the far distance as we made a downwind approach



Final approach, with a good view of the city


Touching down with a view of the terminal…

… and a view of the Airbus plant on the other side of the airfield during taxi

Disembarking went by pretty quickly. In the end the flight time, which meant we still arrived on time

Monday August 20th 2012
Transavia Flight HV6926
Biarritz - Anglet – Bayonne Airport (BIQ) – Rotterdam The Hague Airport (RTM)
Boeing 737-700
Seat 23A


167th overall flight
10th flight on Transavia
15th flight on a Boeing 737-700 (37th flight on an Boeing 737 series)
3rd visit to BIQ, and 7th visit to RTM
1st time flying the BIQ-RTM route

Departure Time (Scheduled/Actual): 14.40 / 14.51
Arrival Time (Scheduled/Actual): 16.30 / 16.26
Block time (Scheduled / Actual): 1.50 / 1.35
Flight duration: 1 hour, 25 minutes
Mileage: 649 nm

From Toulouse I had taken the train to Biarritz, where I spent four wonderful days. And when the days are wonderful, time to go back always comes to soon. Fortunately I had something to look forward to when leaving: the great departure route out of Barritz Airport.

BIQ is set up similar to Lille, a one roof building that houses all the airport functions. Architecture-wise it looks a lot like nearby Pau Airport (PUF), and the airport of Brest (BES) in Brittany. Perhaps the same architect? I arrived about two hours before departure. Transavia doesn’t offer online check in from many outstations, I had a bag to check, and since this is a typical holiday route, I expected a possible lengthy wait. And indeed, when I arrived, check-in had not yet opened but many people were already lingering around. I decided to join them, and so I was fortunately among the first people to be served. My bag was checked efficiently, and the check-in agent also asked if my (pre-purchased) window seat was okay for me. Well duh, of course it is for me!  Biarritz Airport as seen from the outside



Busy scene in the departure lounge. I also had some pictures of the landside area, but they appear to have gone missing from my camera…  

One of the two jetbridges in BIQ. Docked here is an AF flight to Paris Orly

And AF also flies multiple times to Lyon from BIQ. In the back a Darwin Airline Saab 2000 arriving from GVA just landed

And the Saab 2000 is parked at the remote stands area of BIQ. Also visible is the control tower

And my flight arriving



The flight arrived at 14.05, and immediately all passengers rushed to the gate. Definitely the holiday-crowd here. Don’t these folks realize other passengers have to disembark first? In end boarding commenced at around 14.25 – 20 minutes later – and during that time most passenger congregated near the gate entrance. I just patiently remained seated, and much to my amusement, boarding was done in zones, which rows 20-26 boarding first. As I was seated in row 23, I walked past by all the waiting folks and was among the first in the aircraft.

Because of the zone boarding, boarding went pretty orderly and fast and around the departure time 14.40 boarding was completed. We had to wait at the gate for a few more moments “for some paperwork” and pushed back ten minutes late. In the meantime the flying time to Rotterdam was announced as 1 hour and 30 minutes, which seemed fast compared to the block time. Tailwinds again? Route was announced as taking off of the West, sharp turn towards Bordeaux and then continue North via Paris and Brussels. A healthy load on the flight I think, with about 90% of the seats taken. Pushback was about 10 minutes late, and just before two o’clock we taxied over the runway (no parallel taxiways here) towards the end of the end of the runway. The usual safety demo was shown during taxi.

Taxiing out

Good view of the airport terminal

A powerful take-off followed, already started when the turn at the end of the runway wasn’t fully completed. Visible here also is the train station where I arrived in Biarritz

The hostel I stayed in during my stay in Biarritz was located near this small lake

And the beach. The campsite in the middle is where my parents used to take the family when I was young

Turning around over the ocean, heading towards the Northeast

A little cloudy over France, but between the clouds I was able to peak at Bordeaux, including its airport. Only fitting, as my next trip would have it last flight start there

A bit hazy and cloudy during most of the flight, which caused some minor turbulence every now and then. Visible here is the river Gironde exiting into the Atlantic ocean

Lunch from the BOB service. A lot of people bought something. I actually had this for free, as I still had a voucher for a BOB purchase (see An Airbus An A Boeing To And From Berlin (LH/HV) (by roberts87 Jun 24 2012 in Trip Reports))The smoothie was good, and the sandwich (Chicken Bruschetta) was pretty good. On the drop tv screens one of the clips shown was a report about the factory that produces these sandwiches for Transavia: apparently they deliver to AMS twice a day during high season. Got to be fresh then!

Cruising over France


The flight went by pretty fast, and before I knew initial descent already commenced when flying over Belgian airspace


And once we broke through the clouds an amazing approach to the North towards Rotterdam followed, with excellent views of the different island of the province of Zeeland, the cities of Dordrecht and its suburbs and Rotterdam itself



Downtown Rotterdam. The skyscraper in the ‘Kop van Zuid’ district are clearly visible, as is the “Kuip” stadium, home of soccer club Feyenoord

After passing Rotterdam, a turn to the west was made to line up for the runway. Final descent with Rotterdam in the distance

Touching down now, with the skyline visible just below the wing

And so we arrived straight on time. Deplaning was possible through both front and rear doors, so in a matter of minutes I was on my way to the baggage claim

Cityjet fleet resting. I would be back just over a month later to fly one of those to LCY

Yes, I’ve reached the correct destination. Since a few years the airport also bears the name ‘The Hague’, the seat that has the government seat and is only 15-20 minutes away from the airport too

Thanks for reading. Comments are appreciated! I have a few more trip reports up my sleeve, so stay tuned. The next report will be about a second trip I took during my summer break: a mission to get on a Saab 2000 and to flew in and out of Stockholm Bromma…

24 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6808 posts, RR: 77
Reply 1, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 7301 times:

Hi Robert,

nice report and really interesting routing! I visited Innsbruck Airport once, but not by plane. And good to get an impression of Air Corsica here. Btw - the wing of your Transavia 73G looks very dirty - amazing!

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
No Air Corsica service on this flight, but the usual Air France service for breakfast flights: a croissant. I required some more caffeine as well.

Instant coffee?

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
The table is a tad dirty though.

  


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlineglobalflyer From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 928 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 7289 times:

Hey Robert. Great pictures and a lot of great flying. How did you like INN? I was there years ago and loved that little city. Hey that is the BOB voucher that HV gave you when they moved our flight to EIN!   Hope you are well! Cheers, Will


Landing on every Continent almost on an annual basis!
User currently offlinejwhite9185 From United Kingdom, joined May 2007, 1306 posts, RR: 4
Reply 3, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 7221 times:

Great series of flights you did there Robert. That approach to INN really looks like something! Also proves that you can actually go there in summer and not be considered mad.

A couple of those AF planes look pretty dirty though.

Looking forward to the next one!



A300,A319,A320,A321,A333,A343,A346,A388,732,733,734,735,738,741,742,744,752,763,772,77W,788,Q400,DC10,E145,E170,E175,E19
User currently offlineWidebodyroga From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 613 posts, RR: 16
Reply 4, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 6795 times:

Hey Robert.

You got yourself some nice flights there. I love your travel map and how there are gaps that were presumably filled by train travel. You should have shown us some photos from the trains you took. There are plenty of train enthusiasts here that would have appreciated it  
Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
So anyway, there were a number of railway lines I had been meaning to ride. This included the Brenner Pass between Innsbruck and Verona, and I also wanted to spent some time in several Italian cities. A second line I wanted to ride was the railway in France between Toulouse and the Atlantic Coast via Lourdes and Pau, a scenic ride near the feet of the Pyrenees. I would then end up in Biarritz, a beach resort town I’ve visited several times before and I am quite fond of.

Biarritz and Pau are in my bucket list. Too bad that they are somewhat out of the way of everything else I wanna visit.

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
Land and mountains visible down there. This is when things started to get interesting

Sweet! The approach to INN is spectacular no matter what but to get it done in this way is an extra treat! Good thing you were sitting on the right side of the aircraft to witness it the way you did  
Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
Refreshing towel. The table is a tad dirty though.

A "tad" is an understatement. 


Thanks for the report Robert. Looking forward to the ones coming up next  

Stojan

[Edited 2012-09-30 12:00:52]


Visit my aviation page: http://widebodyroga.weebly.com/
User currently offlineFLIEGER67 From Germany, joined Sep 2003, 5170 posts, RR: 55
Reply 5, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 6723 times:

Hi, R.,
great stuff.
Now that´s what I call a succesfull summer vacation trip around Europe.
These approach into INN looks like really stunning.
Well done to collect the airport this way.
Also good to follow the Air Corsica ATR on the MXP-MRS route, also something to do here soon.
Looking for more, you know.

Greetings,
Markus(FLIEGER67)



Next: Capital travel on schedule!.
User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 6695 times:

Thanks for the comments so far! And yes, I will be working on those 3 more reports, I hope I'll be able to finish the next one in less then 1,5 months this time  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Btw - the wing of your Transavia 73G looks very dirty - amazing!

Indeed it does! Bad influence from parent company Air France perhaps?  
Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 1):
Instant coffee?

Afraid so, as with all AF intra-Europe flights.

Quoting globalflyer (Reply 2):
Hey that is the BOB voucher that HV gave you when they moved our flight to EIN!

Indeed it is!

Quoting globalflyer (Reply 2):
How did you like INN?
Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 3):
Also proves that you can actually go there in summer and not be considered mad.

Well, I have now actually been to Innsbruck in Spring, Summer and Fall but not in winter! , it is a nice little town, set in a beautiful enviroment. Just a few snap shots:





Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 3):
A couple of those AF planes look pretty dirty thoug

AF planes always look dirty!  
Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 4):
You should have shown us some photos from the trains you took. There are plenty of train enthusiasts here that would have appreciated it

Well, here you are:








Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 4):
Biarritz and Pau are in my bucket list. Too bad that they are somewhat out of the way of everything else I wanna visit.

Dude, you should go! Both places are interesting by them self, and you can very well combine it with some other great places to visit in France (the Bordeaux area, the Pyrenees themself) and even Spain in close by with San Sebastian and Bilbao for example.

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 4):
Good thing you were sitting on the right side of the aircraft to witness it the way you did

I was lucky there indeed!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 5):
Now that´s what I call a succesfull summer vacation trip around Europe.

It was. And didn't end there too, but that's something for the next report!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 5):
Also good to follow the Air Corsica ATR on the MXP-MRS route, also something to do here soon.

Looking forward to that! And you are also visiting Biarritz soon, no?


User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 15
Reply 7, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 6418 times:

Hello Robert

Interesting read about Italy and France.
Reminds me a bit about the rail trip I made in 2011 back trough France
AF's domestic product looks ok, however AF is and will never be my favorite airline.
Interesting to see LIL, my closest airport!
HV looks intereting as well, would love to to INN approach one day.

greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlinesultanils From Belgium, joined Mar 2010, 1721 posts, RR: 30
Reply 8, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 6375 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Hello Robert,

That was a nice set of (exotic) flights you've taken! And an equally nice report as well. May I suggest to make your pics just a little larger next time (640px for example)? Their quality is excellent so it should be very nice to see them in a larger size.
Those French domestic hops seemed very enjoyable and you visited quite some secondary airports. Transavia looked nice as well, I had a nice flight on the carrier some months ago.


Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
Cabin view

Hmm, I prefer the older and more colourful seats, definitely  

Sultanils



In thrust we trust.
User currently offlineadamspotter From Netherlands, joined Feb 2011, 1161 posts, RR: 3
Reply 9, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 6125 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Hi Robert!

Congrats on making your backlog a bit smaller! My backlog is getting quite large too and with 3 pretty big trips planned in the next half year I'm afraid its only going to get bigger!
Anyway a very nice report you have made here on these interesting routes. I have been wanting to get to INN myself too due to the amazing approach but haven't gotten to it, yet..
I have to admit that I have never flown Transavia before, yes I know it is very bad especially being AMS based. It just doesn't really appeal to me being in an aircraft filled with young dutch vacationers if you know what I mean..
Nice to see Air Corsica in your report too!

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
with excellent views of the different island of the province of Zeeland, the cities of Dordrecht and its suburbs and Rotterdam itself

Hope to get such a view tommorrow evening!

cheers,

Brendan


User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 6050 times:

Thanks for the additional comments!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 7):
AF's domestic product looks ok, however AF is and will never be my favorite airline

Fortunately I mostly had positive experiences with AF!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 7):
Interesting to see LIL, my closest airport!

Cute little airport!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 7):
would love to to INN approach one day.

Do try it! It's amazing. As is the take-off from INN, which I did earlier this year!

Quoting sultanils (Reply 8):
And an equally nice report as well.

Thank you Nils!

Quoting sultanils (Reply 8):
Their quality is excellent so it should be very nice to see them in a larger size

Well actually most photos are taken by camera phone, and if I start posting them larger the quality increases rapidly.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 9):
I have been wanting to get to INN myself too due to the amazing approach but haven't gotten to it, yet..

Like I said to Marc, try it!

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 9):
I have to admit that I have never flown Transavia before, yes I know it is very bad especially being AMS based. It just doesn't really appeal to me being in an aircraft filled with young dutch vacationers if you know what I mean.

I know exactly what you mean! Although if you pick the less "package holiday" routes such as BIQ, TXL, BCN or INN it can be okay. Would want to be on a flight to TFS for example with only screaming kids  


User currently offlinedeltamartin From Sweden, joined Dec 2010, 1061 posts, RR: 7
Reply 11, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 5972 times:

Hi Robert!

Nice report! Glad to see you had a nice summer vacation!

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
Besides flying, I’m also a bit of a railway buff, and I love seeing a country by train. It’s excellent to way to see the countryside, enjoy the landscape and dream away.

I agree with you on this one, but I do tend to get a little bored after a while. But then again, more and more trains has WiFi and whatnot available.

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
The agent of course offered the usual connections via Paris (both Orly and CDG) but those didn’t appeal. I’ve been to CDG several times already – and two more coming up this year – and I had also already booked a trip to visit ORY for the first time later this year. So I inquired if she had connections via another airport besides the two Paris airports. I expected something like Lyon and Bordeaux to come up, but to my surprise she said “I have a connection via Lille for you

Really nice to score the Lille option!

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
A few weeks before the flight I noticed that the flight would now be operated by Air Corsica instead of Airlinair; a carrier that is bit more rare to fly on then Arlinair!

Indeed a rather exotic carrier! I didn't know they operated for Air France.

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
Followed by an amazing 180 degrees turn back towards the airport

Wow, looks tight! Seems like a great approach.

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
The next report will be about a second trip I took during my summer break: a mission to get on a Saab 2000 and to flew in and out of Stockholm Bromma…

Really looking forward to that one!  

Martin


User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 5779 times:

Thanks for commenting Martin!

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 11):
Nice report! Glad to see you had a nice summer vacation!

Thanks, and it was!

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 11):
but I do tend to get a little bored after a while. But then again, more and more trains has WiFi and whatnot available

True. I did fell sleep for a little hour I think.

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 11):
Really nice to score the Lille option!

Indeed!

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 11):
Indeed a rather exotic carrier! I didn't know they operated for Air France

I believe they operate two routes for AF, both out of MRS. For the rest they do code share with AF on all flights between the 4 Corsican airports and mainland France.

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 11):
Wow, looks tight! Seems like a great approach.

It was amazing!

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 11):
Really looking forward to that one!

Give it a few more weeks!


User currently offlinegabrielchew From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 3272 posts, RR: 12
Reply 13, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 5669 times:

Very nice report Robert, with a great route and photos!

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
I have a connection via Lille for you. Now that most certainly did appeal.

That must have been music to your ears! Great routing!

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
Not wanted to carry around my large bag all the time, I went to see if I could already check my bag

Could you not have checked in in from MXP?



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 offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 5586 times:

Thanks for commenting Gabriel!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 13):
That must have been music to your ears! Great routing!

It sure was!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 13):
Could you not have checked in in from MXP?

It was on two seperate bookings, and with the 8 hour layover in between, and me already leaving Toulouse again the next day I didn't want to risk losing my bag!

[Edited 2012-10-04 22:50:34]

User currently offlineCaptainRed From Germany, joined Oct 2010, 686 posts, RR: 20
Reply 15, posted (1 year 11 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 5520 times:

Hi Robert,

very nice report and a quite cool routing you have put together here for you holiday, combining planes and trains. Awesome pictures from the approach into INN, never done that myself, but it is very high on my list.

Also nice surprise to get that Air Corsica ATR. And a great way to get from Marseille to Toulouse via Lille, well done by the agent to offer you this route. Sounds like a crazy route for most people probably, but for us the way to go   ...

Greetings
CaptainRed


User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (1 year 11 months 2 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 5207 times:

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 15):
very nice report and a quite cool routing you have put together here for you holiday, combining planes and trains. Awesome pictures from the approach into INN, never done that myself, but it is very high on my list.

Also nice surprise to get that Air Corsica ATR. And a great way to get from Marseille to Toulouse via Lille, well done by the agent to offer you this route. Sounds like a crazy route for most people probably, but for us the way to g

Thanks for commenting! Indeed a great holiday, and same great train rides and some nice aviation fun too, such as the INN landing, the Air Corsica flight and LIL!


User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 27005 posts, RR: 57
Reply 17, posted (1 year 11 months 2 weeks 4 days ago) and read 4995 times:

Hey Robert  

Very enjoyable report to read and nice photos. I love the pics of INN such a scenic place. Never been but always wanted to .

Looking forward to the next reports.

Regards

Philip  


User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (1 year 11 months 2 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 4761 times:

Hey Philip,

Quoting OA260 (Reply 17):
Very enjoyable report to read and nice photos. I love the pics of INN such a scenic place. Never been but always wanted to

Thanks for the comment and compliments, always appreciated!


User currently offlineinfodesk From Switzerland, joined May 2006, 1459 posts, RR: 33
Reply 19, posted (1 year 11 months 1 week 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 4323 times:

Hi Robert,

Sorry for my late reply on this one. You certainly packed a lot of interesting places into your holiday, well done.

INN has to be of a European aviation highlight, such a stunning place to land or take off. I did actually look at the HV service when I flew there last year there but in the end settled with AB as it was an easier schedule. Lille is a place I only know from the railway station in the days when I used Eurostar a lot but I’m sure it would be worth exploring. And Biarritz, well I was there last month & just loved the promenade and fresh Atlantic wind!

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
These news (all green) leather seats will gradually replace the well-known very colorful cloth seats that Transavia used to have.

They look far more stylish.

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
The Easyjet and Flybe aircraft are heading towards the runwa

Didn’t realize Flybe flew to INN in the summer, perhaps this is something new.

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
And it turned out to be a light load indeed, I counted 22 passengers,

Sounds like my one and only ATR flight on AF too!

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
She could print my boarding passes, which she promptly did, but baggage could only be accepted two hours before departure. There was a luggage storing facility, but they wanted an absurd E15 for 4 hours

What a ridiculous amount. It’s less than half the price even at ZRH.

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
Biarritz Airport as seen from the outside

Not the prettiest of buildings, is it?

Quoting roberts87 (Thread starter):
One of the two jetbridges in BIQ. Docked here is an AF flight to Paris Orly

That would have been the same flight that I took a couple of weeks later  

Happy flying
Infodesk   

[Edited 2012-10-19 02:33:08]


"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (1 year 11 months 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 4133 times:

Quoting infodesk (Reply 19):
Sorry for my late reply on this one. You certainly packed a lot of interesting places into your holiday, well done.

No problem Hannah, thanks for commenting!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 19):
INN has to be of a European aviation highlight, such a stunning place to land or take off. I did actually look at the HV service when I flew there last year there but in the end settled with AB as it was an easier schedul

I think I remember that report. And agreed, it's definately a must do in Europe for aviation fans

Quoting infodesk (Reply 19):
And Biarritz, well I was there last month & just loved the promenade and fresh Atlantic wind!

I can imagine, I love that place!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 19):
Didn’t realize Flybe flew to INN in the summer, perhaps this is something new

I think it was a charter, as you can't book flights to INN on Flybe.com. I have to admit that I do not remember where the flight was headed!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 19):
What a ridiculous amount. It’s less than half the price even at ZRH.

Riddiculous indeed!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 19):
Not the prettiest of buildings, is it?

Most certainly not, but it's not as bad on the inside.


User currently offlineairbuseric From Netherlands, joined Jan 2005, 4269 posts, RR: 51
Reply 21, posted (1 year 11 months 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 3923 times:

Hi Robert,

really cool to see your flights from this summer trip covered here. You got the Transavia new interior on the INN flight. How do you think? Better or worse then the 'Smiley seats'. HV's Boeings get 1 row of 3 seats extra so total capacity is up too when the new interior is installed.

Shame to have such dirty windows, especially on the Air Corse flight. But a nice addition for the books for sure. Also the domestic A319 flight, usually operated by domestic 319's (F-GPMx series). But you don't seem to take notice of the registration.

Regards
Eric



"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (1 year 10 months 4 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 3613 times:

Hi Eric, thanks for the reply!

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 21):
You got the Transavia new interior on the INN flight. How do you think? Better or worse then the 'Smiley seats'

I like the looks of the new seats better, but comfort wise I prefered the older ones. These new have limited recline, and - in spite of this being slimline seats - the legroom is not so good.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 21):
Also the domestic A319 flight, usually operated by domestic 319's (F-GPMx series). But you don't seem to take notice of the registration.

Indeed, I don't keep track of registrations, and if I did I probably would not have know or looked up what kind of configuration it was. I believe the domestic A319's have 2 additional rows, so I guess I had a little more legroom then normally on a domestic flight  


User currently offlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6571 posts, RR: 55
Reply 23, posted (1 year 10 months 4 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 3481 times:

Hi Robert !

Thanks for a nice report with a lot of traveling! Good to see you get around to lots of different places in a short time!

I've taken the train from Lyon thru Geneva and Zurich to Innsbruck and Munich and it was very scenic. Nice to see you get on some TGV trains as well.

Flights look okay too!

Looking forward to your next report !

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineroberts87 From Netherlands, joined Dec 2011, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (1 year 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 3195 times:

Quoting The777Man (Reply 23):
Thanks for a nice report with a lot of traveling! Good to see you get around to lots of different places in a short time!

Thanks for the comments, they are well appreciated!

Quoting The777Man (Reply 23):
I've taken the train from Lyon thru Geneva and Zurich to Innsbruck and Munich and it was very scenic

Did that ride a few years ago too, very scenic indeed, one of the more scenic routes in the Alps I believe!


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