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LHR-CNX With TG (J+Y)  
User currently onlinebaldwin471 From UK - England, joined Mar 2012, 300 posts, RR: 0
Posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 6809 times:

Intro

Well, well, well. Here I am again. Back on my travels again. Thailand. Again. I need to stop saying again.

I had decided that I would spend my Christmas break away from home, so I thought about a few places. San Francisco, New York, Rome etc. In the end I couldn't resist the lure of Thailand for another few weeks.

I already knew that if I were to go back to Thailand, it had to be Chiang Mai. As some of you will know, there is an Elephant sanctuary called the elephant nature park. A haven for rescued elephants that have been rescued off of the streets from begging etc.

There is Also a dog rescue centre in the park, and I am a big dog lover, so I thought “perfect”. I contacted the lady who runs the park and asked if I could come and volunteer over the Christmas period.

She responded with a resounding yes. I was ecstatic. Next thing to do was book flights. I didn't ever want to step foot In AUH again, so EY was out of the question. Emirates was too expensive for Y, and mental money for J. So I thought TG was the best option. I’m actually typing this out at BKK, waiting for my connecting flight onto CNX, but more on that later.

So I looked at the TG website and saw that they had some very good deals on in J. So before the prices changed or the cabin became fully booked, I took the plunge. Flights are as listed:

* TG911 LHR-BKK 5th December 2012 A346 Royal Silk –Seat 11K

* TG112 BKK-CNX 6th December 2012 A300 Economy – Seat 46A

* TG917 CNX-BKK 24th December 2012 B773/2 Economy – Seat 51D

* TG910 BKK-LHR 25th December 2012 A346 Royal Silk – Seat 14A

With the flights booked, it was time to sort out hotels for the 6th-11th (when I start at the dog rescue) and for the night of the 23rd. I chose the Chiang Mai plaza hotel for the first few days and the Airport greenery hotel for the last night.

This report will only detail the LHR-BKK-CNX part of the trip, and not the return. This is because my idiotic camera decided that it would format my sd card on the flight from BKK-LHR. I had swapped out the original SD card which has the images contained in this post for one with more storage. So i now have no photos of the lovely doggies and people i met, or pictures from the flight from CNX-BKK. So yeah, that was annoying.

Right enough babble, let’s get on with it.

Note – I am writing and will be writing this as I am doing it, or after I have do it. If that makes sense. So the tenses will be mixed up but bear with me.

Flight 1 – LHR-BKK TG911

I set my alarm for 6:30am. I aimed to leave the house at 9 to arrive at Heathrow Terminal 3 for 9:50, two hours before my departure time. So, I am out with the dogs at 7:00, and it starts bloody snowing. Typical. We all know how bad UK airports are when a little bit of snow arrives, so I have to admit that I was slightly worried that my flight would be delayed. After half an hour the snow started to melt away. Phew.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9052_zps394f6a80.jpg

My granddad arrived at 8:55 to take me and my camera down to T3. Traffic on the M25 was shocking. As usual I suppose. Anyway, It cleared up enough to get dropped off. I said my goodbye and was off yet again. I checked in at the dedicated Royal Silk check-in. Fancy.

I was told that I could use the SAS lounge, so having never visited a dedicated lounge before, I gave it a shot. It was ok, a bit snooty so not really my scene. Some nice views of 27L but direct in the line of the low winter sun, so I was blinded. I left after 20 minutes and proceeded to my assigned gate, number 3.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9075_zps72f8e2bf.jpg
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9066_zpscbd4318a.jpg

HS-TNA was sat there waiting for me. The oldest A346 in TG’s fleet, though still only 6 years old. I could only see her number one engine and her tail, as a ghastly HSBC logo was in the way of the rest of her. Ah well, parked next to her and in clear view was a VS A343 headed for Tokyo.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9078_zps31d0b161.jpg
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9081_zps1a7bbfc8.jpg
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http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9100_zpsead03443.jpg

After 20 minutes of waiting, at 11:30 HS-TNA opened it's doors. Being in the front of the J cabin, I boarded using the L1 door. I was greeted by three smiling Thai ladies. Very friendly. I took my seat in 11K and couldn't believe the amount of legroom I had due to the bulkhead. I was offered a glass of champagne or orange juice, so I opted for the orange juice.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9103_zpsbaaf70b2.jpg
The view from my seat, an SQ A388 at the next gate

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9105_zps9a2c70fa.jpg
Incredible legroom!

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9106_zps682fbda7.jpg
The seat controls

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9113_zps8f5aba04.jpg
27L for T/O today

After about ten minutes we pushed back. The runway in use for take-off today was 27L. After what felt like ages (Although was only about 20 minutes), I experienced my first A340 Take-off. It certainly wasn't sluggish. We sped down the tarmac and rotated before a quick climb out and left turn 180 to get us facing the right direction. Maybe people mean the A343 when they say it is sluggish, because this A346 was certainly not.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9120_zps40cfd213.jpg
Lining up after a TK A330 departure

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9125_zpsaa9696d9.jpg
Rotate

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9129_zps655ea7f3.jpg
Climbing out

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9134_zps2768ee0a.jpg
Breaking through the clouds

Load on the business cabin was about 80%, First was full and Y was about 90%. High yields on this route for TG I would say.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9141_zpsfc4f2dee.jpg
Great views above the clouds

After a short while the seatbelt sign was extinguished, and a drinks and snack service started. I had a glass of diet coke and the only food offered, sour cream and chive pretzels. Not bad.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9145_zpsacff7305.jpg
Tasty

Then came the first hot towel service, so I have my face a good scrub and handed it back. Very hot towels, by the way.

After about an hour and a half, dinner service started. Starter was pate with salad and scallops, bread roll and garlic bread. The bread was lovely, as was the salad, but the pate and scallop left a lot to be desired.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9146_zpsf463f002.jpg
Not to my taste, but not terrible

Another drink service came next, before the main course. I chose the Thai roast chicken meal. It was nice enough, nothing to write home about mind you. The rice was very starchy. Yet more beverages followed.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9150_zps7ec3730b.jpg

Fruit and cheese platter next. As someone who doesn't really like cheese, this was only going to go badly. I found that there was only four grapes and a slice of very bitter pineapple for the fruit, which was disappointing.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9154_zps176e0ad2.jpg
Not a great selection of fruit

Some views over Poland
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9156_zps0f4fd0b7.jpg
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9160_zpsac93dd46.jpg
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9162_zpsd2249a35.jpg

Then came the icing on the cake. A lovely rich chocolate cake with a cup or rosy lee. Creamy cake and tea, perfect.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9163_zps259178f3.jpg
Delicious!

At this stage of the flight we was flying over northern Poland, and I was absolutely shattered, so I thought I’d try to get some kip. Luckily, just as I started reclining my seat down to 170 degrees, the cabin lights dimmed right down and IFE screens were turned off (not personal, but the ones on the wall by the bulkhead). I managed to get to sleep fairly quickly and awoke 4 hours later over northern India, just before passing Delhi.

There was a fair bit of turbulence over India. Nothing major but slightly uncomfortable at times. I quite liked the seat TG offers in J. It’s firm but comfortable nevertheless.

I then decided with three hours left that I would watch a film and check out the IFE offerings. About 11 pages of 6 films, so about 66 altogether. A good selection. I decided on TED, with Seth MacFarlane. Pretty funny film.

Breakfast was served an hour before landing. Another fruit platter, this time with a good selection of fruits. A couple of buns with butter and strawberry jam too, and a strawberry yoghurt. The best meal of the flight by far.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9173_zpsb7e977c3.jpg
Tasty

The hot breakfast was served after, with a hash brown, sausages, pancakes and beans/mushrooms. Not great in all honesty.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9177_zpsc337d5e9.jpg
Not the best breakfast I've had on an aircraft]

The sky was starting to brighten as we descended through 5,000ft, and we made our final right turn to line up with runway 19L. Landing was a smooth affair. Certainly not the best landing I’ve experienced but far from the worst.

[b]Some views on approach (Apologies for poor quality, low light + high speed = not great images

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9180_zps7cb32e3a.jpg
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http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9192_zps52ef471e.jpg

Bangkok seems very foggy today, could hardly see the aircraft we parked next to. Only after disembarking did I realise it was TG’s new A380! Looks great in Thai colours.

I headed down to the transfer counter. As I am headed to CNX, I had to go through PPC here in BKK. The problem is, I’m now sat here in Burger king on the terminal waiting for my flight to CNX. I’ve still got a four hour wait as I write this.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9213_zps3b422e92.jpg
Waiting at B1

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9218_zps3526529f.jpg
HS-TAZ

Flight 2 BKK-CNX TG112

We boarded the A300-600 (HS-TAZ, the newest A300 in TG’s fleet, built in 1998) about 20 minutes late, due to the ground staff changing two wheels form the left main gear. Odd. Anyway I experienced another first on this flight. An A300 take-off. Wow. I’ve never been pushed back into a seat like that, not even on a 77W. The thrust felt incredible. After 2:30 of flight we were at 10000ft. Incredible. It’s safe to say my new favourite short haul plane is the A300.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9223_zps64d3a6a9.jpg
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9221_zpsc49f37c9.jpg

Flight time today was due to be 1 hour. After 15 minutes of flight the snack box was handed out to passengers. It included a small pot of food (no idea what, I didn't try it) and a small carton of guava juice. The juice was nice enough, quite refreshing. Before I knew it we were starting our decent into Chiang Mai International.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9227_zpsa062d8b0.jpg
Obligatory leg-room shot
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9228_zpsf5ed9826.jpg
CRT monitors. Old school!
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9230_zps229d4c0d.jpg
Food glorious food

The captain made a short announcement, thanking passengers for flying TG and telling us the current conditions at CNX. At about 7000ft, the nose of the aircraft was pushed down around 12 degrees as the huge flaps extended. We touched down at 16:10, exactly on time despite the delay.

http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9257_zps4947d68d.jpg
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9259_zps82bdf3e8.jpg
http://i1090.photobucket.com/albums/i361/alexblfc/SAM_9266_zps878f26e0.jpg

The landing was impressive, especially the combination of brakes and R/T. Really feels awesome. The victorious sounding music on touchdown was new to me. Would've been ironic if the aircraft skidded off the runway after that.

Here is a video of the landing - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ncke3Z5uUh0

Disembarking was a quick affair, even though I waited for everyone to get off first. We parked up next to an Air Asia 320.

After heading down to the international baggage claim, I waited for my backpack. It came out first, after about 60 seconds of waiting, and only 3 minutes after parking. Thai efficiency at its best.

I headed through the scanner and walked out into the main entrance hall and made straight for the taxi counter. I told the lady where I wanted to go and she said wait 20 minutes. I paid 120 Baht which is about £2.40, a great deal as I expected to pay at least 250 Baht.

After around 15 minutes of waiting a big Toyota pulled up and I jumped in. The taxi driver was a miserable sod, the opposite of what I encountered last time in Chiang Mai, maybe he was having a bad day.

Finito

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed my second T/R.

Cheers, Alex.

10 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinegabrielchew From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 3311 posts, RR: 12
Reply 1, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 6668 times:

Nice report Alex!

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):

So I looked at the TG website and saw that they had some very good deals on in J

Really? whenever I've looked, TG have had really high fares in C (and Y)....how much did you pay, if you don't mind me asking?

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):
This is because my idiotic camera decided that it would format my sd card on the flight from BKK-LHR. I had swapped out the original SD card which has the images contained in this post for one with more storage. So i now have no photos of the lovely doggies and people i met, or pictures from the flight from CNX-BKK. So yeah, that was annoying.

How anoying. I managed to format away all the photos of a recent trip I took to Ireland. Very annoying. No idea how I managed that, but I was a lot more careful with my next set of photos!

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):
Fruit and cheese platter next. As someone who doesn't really like cheese, this was only going to go badly. I found that there was only four grapes and a slice of very bitter pineapple for the fruit, which was disappointing.

Did they not come round with a selection, and you choose what you want? I think that's what happened on my KTM-BKK flight last year.

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):
As I am headed to CNX, I had to go through PPC here in BKK. The problem is, I’m now sat here in Burger king on the terminal waiting for my flight to CNX. I’ve still got a four hour wait as I write this.

Hmm, I'm 99% sure you should have got access to the domestic TG lounge if you've just come off a longhual flight in C. Did you ask about entrance? Would it have cost much more to ugrade to C for the domestic leg? The fares normally seem quite reasonable.

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):
Incredible. It’s safe to say my new favourite short haul plane is the A300.

Ha, I don't think Airbus orginally designed this for shorthual!



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 onlinebaldwin471 From UK - England, joined Mar 2012, 300 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 6165 times:

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 1):

Nice report Alex!

Thanks!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 1):
Really? whenever I've looked, TG have had really high fares in C (and Y)....how much did you pay, if you don't mind me asking?

I paid around £1500.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 1):
How anoying. I managed to format away all the photos of a recent trip I took to Ireland. Very annoying. No idea how I managed that, but I was a lot more careful with my next set of photos!

Sucks big time

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 1):
Did they not come round with a selection, and you choose what you want? I think that's what happened on my KTM-BKK flight last year.

No selection, you get what you're given

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 1):
Hmm, I'm 99% sure you should have got access to the domestic TG lounge if you've just come off a longhual flight in C. Did you ask about entrance? Would it have cost much more to ugrade to C for the domestic leg? The fares normally seem quite reasonable.

I never enquired about upgrading for the BKK-CNX-BKK legs, even if it was a cheap upgrade i don't see the point on such a short flight

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 1):
Ha, I don't think Airbus orginally designed this for shorthual!

No aha. It is awesome though.


User currently offlineBurj From United States of America, joined Nov 2007, 901 posts, RR: 4
Reply 3, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 5656 times:

Nifty trip report...

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):
I had a glass of diet coke and the only food offered, sour cream and chive pretzels. Not bad.

I was quite intrigued that on a Thai flight from the UK to Thailand you were given "Penn State" pretzels...did some googling and apparently they are a BRITISH company! I guess in the same way that American like listening to things in a British accent...Brits like food with an American heritage!  


User currently onlinebaldwin471 From UK - England, joined Mar 2012, 300 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 4885 times:

Quoting Burj (Reply 3):
I was quite intrigued that on a Thai flight from the UK to Thailand you were given "Penn State" pretzels...did some googling and apparently they are a BRITISH company! I guess in the same way that American like listening to things in a British accent...Brits like food with an American heritage!  

Interesting! Yeah i guess so.


User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8561 posts, RR: 54
Reply 5, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 4794 times:
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Hi Alex,

Nice read and pictures, thanks for sharing.

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):
This report will only detail the LHR-BKK-CNX part of the trip, and not the return. This is because my idiotic camera decided that it would format my sd card on the flight from BKK-LHR. I had swapped out the original SD card which has the images contained in this post for one with more storage. So i now have no photos of the lovely doggies and people i met, or pictures from the flight from CNX-BKK. So yeah, that was annoying.

- That's a real bummer, must be most annoying and upsetting.

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):
I was told that I could use the SAS lounge, so having never visited a dedicated lounge before, I gave it a shot. It was ok, a bit snooty so not really my scene. Some nice views of 27L but direct in the line of the low winter sun, so I was blinded

- I've used this lounge earlier this year when we flew with TK, It's ok but not somewhere I'd like to spend a long period of time, food and drink offerings need attention.

Quoting baldwin471 (Thread starter):
As I am headed to CNX, I had to go through PPC here in BKK. The problem is, I’m now sat here in Burger king on the terminal waiting for my flight to CNX. I’ve still got a four hour wait as I write this

- Were you not able to use the TG lounges given you flew in in JCL?

I have to say the catering was nothing special, I think I had better meals when I flew them regionally on the HKG-BKK route last month.

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 offlineadamspotter From Netherlands, joined Feb 2011, 1167 posts, RR: 12
Reply 6, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 4674 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Nice report, really enjoyed it!
Always nice to fly the A340-600, really like that aircraft.
Not to impressed with the catering you got, such a shame.

cheers,

Brendan


User currently onlinebaldwin471 From UK - England, joined Mar 2012, 300 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 4625 times:

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 6):

Nice report, really enjoyed it!

Thanks mate. Just booked myself back to CNX on the 23rd Jan. Went for QR so getting my first trip on the 787! LHR-DOH-BKK-CNX will be the next TR!


User currently offlineIrishAyes From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 2208 posts, RR: 15
Reply 8, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 4319 times:

thanks for the TR! the meals in Royal Silk look pretty unimpressive. Thai has unfortunately gone by the ways of UA  


next flights: jfk-icn, icn-hkg-bkk-cdg, cdg-phl-msp
User currently onlinebaldwin471 From UK - England, joined Mar 2012, 300 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 4191 times:

Quoting IrishAyes (Reply 8):

thanks for the TR! the meals in Royal Silk look pretty unimpressive. Thai has unfortunately gone by the ways of UA  

Having never had the pleasure (displeasure?) of flying with UA, i can't quite fathom how bad that is. Anyone care to enlighten?


User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 16
Reply 10, posted (1 year 9 months 3 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 3453 times:

Hi

Interesting report, thanks for sharing!
Great you logged the 300.

greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
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