We arrived at the airport at 6:45 am and inmediately checked in at counter no3. Iberia staff at our local airport is not usually very polite with the passenggers but this time, they were very professional and friendly with us and my English teacher. That Iberia staff gave me and one of my partners very good seats (I think they were 17A and 17B, behind the wing)
We boarded the plane by the front door and a group of friendly F/As and the commandant received us with a “buenos días” or “hola”.
I put my hand lugagge in the “compartment over our heads” and sat on a comfortable blue seat. Then, a blond-haired F/A gave me a newspaper, some past-times and also a tiny board game. Then I looked arround me and checked that the plane was clean, and also full of passenggers!
We were pushed-back at 8:57 and then, the screens were unfolded from the ceiling and the Security Instructions were displayed on them, in Spanish and English.
At 9:06 we took off and had some turbulences after it. A few minutes later, the “sobrecargo” “offered us her services” and then, the breakfast service started.
I had a cup of coffe with milk, a pack of peanuts, some biscuits and an orange juice.
It all was very good and also tasty. Finally, the F/As withdrown my cup and my glass from my table.
During breakfast, the RONDA magazine channel was displayed on the screens, but it was not very interesting, so I decided to enjoy the wiews of Castilla-León” and “Cordilera Central” (Central Mountains of Spain)
At 9:26 we were told that we would land in a few minutes, so “please, fasten your seat belts, put your seat in the right possition and fold your table up”.
We landed in MAD at 9:39 (perfect landing, thanks commandant!!!!) and we were driven to a remote stand and a bus took us to the terminal.
While we were being taken to the stand, a Santa Bárbara Airlines DC-10 landed and also an IB B757 behind it.
Departure - 13:15
Aircraft - RJ100 (operated by British Airways Citiexpress)
We arrived at the gate and a group of old ladies received us and asked for our boarding cards and checked them by hand. We took another bus (iberia’s) which took us to the plane, that was in a remote stand, next to a JK A320 and two IB’s A340/313Xs.
Then, we waited in the stairs for almost ten minutes because the commandant and the F/As were checking the boarding cards again!
Wen I entered the aircraft I saw two granny staffs and the commandant receiving us with a typical English “Oula” and “Quei tal”? That’s when I veryfied that they spoke no Spanish. But my question is: No Spanish speaking on a plane flying from Spain to UK? Other F/As, for example, Iberia’s, speak both languages in domestic flights! (Yes, I know sometimes their English/French/German is not very good, but at least, you can speak with them in your own language!)
Then we crossed the Europe Traveller Class (or something like that, I can’t remember) and sat on our Traveller class seat.
Oh dear! What a pitch! I wasn’t able to move my legs during all the flight (And I´m only 1.63 metres tall !!!!!!!!!)
Suddenly, one of the old F/As started to show us the security instructions, while the other one spoke to us only in English.
No press or past-times were offered and even not blankets or pillows.
A few minutes later, we were pushed back (Arround 13:27) and we had a long “tour”in Barajas (for more than 10 minutes) although I didn’t enjoy it very much, because I was seated in the central seat and the wiews weren’t too fantastic.
We took off at 13:53 (a bit delayed) and the turbulences were pretty funny after it! . After twenty minutes, the F/As appeared behind the curtain and started to serve lunch. They offered us a salad sandwich or a cheese sandwich.
I asked for the cheese sandwich and a Fanta/Orangina/Orange KAS.
What I received was:
-A sandwhich with lettuce, a small slice of cheese and Kepchup. Kepchup sauce with cheese and lettuce? Not a good mixture, is it?
-A glass of Sprite and Orange juice (It seemed to be the Fanta/Orangina/Orange KAS)
I only ate a small piece of the sandwich and didn’t drink the Sprite-orange juice mixture.
But a group of Spanish guys seating behind me started to throw pieces of onion, lettuce and tomatoe, so that I told one of the F/As that their behaviour was annoying other passenggers and what he said was:
-I´m sorry, but I´m busy, because I’m still serving lunch for the Business class passenggers.
It was incredible! Then, my partner “received” a slice of onion on his head so that I decided to tell the other F/A about that, and I went to the front galley, where I supposed she was, but when I opened the courtain, she pushed me back and said:
-Sorry, the pilot is gonna have his lunch so you can’t disturb me.
I was so angry because nobody aboard that plane could understand my situation that I decided to have a “siesta” on my seat, that was quite comfortable.
At 15:20, the commandant announced that we’d land in a few moments, so I fastened my belt and took some photos of the passengger cabin.
The landing was very good and we were parked on a finger, which connected us to T3. The lugagge appeared on the belt inmediately and then, a bus took us to Chesterfield, a very nice town where I stayed for three weeks.
Boarding - 9:35
Departure - 12:50 (local time) T3
Aircraft - RJ100 (operated by British Airways Citiexpress)
We arrived at the airport at 7:50 and saw a BA A320 landing while we were waiting outside British Airways terminal T3. The BA terminal at MAN is quite modern-I liked it very much- and we checked in at desk no 6.
Then, we went to the boarding area, and the security measures were very strict, but finally, twenty minutes later, we were “free” and had breakfast at the Café of BA’s small terminal. Our RJ was situated between two BA’s 767/300. Boarding started at 9:35 and we had to wait a long queue because the crew were checking the boarding cards a bit slowly. When we entered the plane I was received with a hello and good morning and I also said “hola” to check if they could speak Spanish, but they couldn’t so it was a real let-down again!
Then, after being seated in 14C, a male F/A offered me English newspapers, and a few minutes later, the “show” began: One of the Business class F/A started to say the Security instructions, and of course, only in English.
We were pushed-back at 10:05 from our stand and we took off at 10:25.
Take off was very smooth and we had no turbulences during the flight.
After 15 minutes later, the service began. I received a cheese sandwich and a glass of water and it wasn’t so bad. The male staff was very friendly and polite with us although he couldn’t speak Spanish, but he was talking with me for a long time after serving lunch.
I bought a pack of small BA planes “for the fridge” –B747,B767,B777- (you know, to place them in the door of your fridge) .
This flight was much better than the first one (MAD-MAN) and the staff worked more professionally.
We landed at MAD at 12:50 (local time) and the plane was driven to the same remote stand as our MAD-MAN plane was. An IB A321 and an AF B737 were next to us. Then an Iberia bus took us to the terminal and went to the IB counter to connect with our next flight.
We walked along Barajas airport for ten minutes and we found our gate. It was C-47 and the A320 was waiting for us. A young lady received us and checked our boarding cards.
There was a small queue at the entrance of the plane because, Business class passengers were placing their luggage.
Two friendly F/As and also an older one received us. I sat on my seat (19A) and waited. A few minutes later, the old F/A offered me a newspaper but I refused it.
Then, The Security measures were displayed on the TVs and started our pushback (We were parked in a finger) The take off wasn’t spectacular, but it was ok. Some minutes after take off, the F/As started to serve the passengers.
I received a pack of peanuts, a soft drink and a small bag of crisps. This service was very light, but the flight took us only 40 minutes!
We landed at OVD (Asturias) at 15:52.
Our trip had already finished!
I think that the service was very good, and also the attention to the passengers.
I definitely choose them again.
Nothing different. I think their service in European flights should improve as well as their plane interiors (RJs were not very good-kept). I didn’t have very good flights with them, so that , I’d think twice about flying with them.
Anxebla From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (10 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3279 times:
Good report!!! And it's very amazing your command of English ¿Lo has redactado tu solo o alguien te ha ayudado? but anyway...good job
If you take a foreign airline for travelling no always you will find spanish-speakers or somebody who can to speak our language in the F/A
Sabena 690 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (10 years 9 months 2 weeks 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 3269 times:
Thanks for the report!
A pity about your BA experience! I guess it's more due to the aircraft type and the cabin crew on your first flight you were not happy to fly them...
The AR1's with 3-3 seating must indeed be a pain on the longer EU sectors like MAD-MAN. You would have been much more comfortable in one of their A32S's.
IberiaN From Spain, joined Sep 2003, 166 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (10 years 9 months 2 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 3144 times:
Yes, the new terminal has three fingers and also the ILS III is working by the time. A new apron has been build and also the runway has been prolonged.
The parking is now bigger with more than 250 spaces for the cars.
Also a new duty-free shop and a restaurant have been opened in the first floor (boarding area) and as I have read on the newspaper, the gates in the ground floor are still opened for CRJs and also other unusual aircraft when the three fingers are not available.
I haven't been there yet, but I will fly to Germany in April so I'll see all the improvements.
There is also a new access with a tunnel with some plane noses at its entrance
and also a new railway line will be opened in the near future.
JoseMEX From Mexico, joined Oct 1999, 1539 posts, RR: 24
Reply 5, posted (10 years 9 months 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 3146 times:
>>also a new railway line will be opened in the near future<<
I've heard about it, but have not been able to find any info on it. Do you know what type of train it's going to be ( FEVE, etc.)? I would think maybe it will be just an extension from Ranón? Any idea on when it's supposed to be finished? Have they started building it yet?
IberiaN From Spain, joined Sep 2003, 166 posts, RR: 3
Reply 6, posted (10 years 9 months 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 3103 times:
I have got no info about it, but I suppose it will be FEVE / Cercanias Renfe the main train operator. I don't know if they have already started to build it, but it could be in the near future
Regards from Asturies!
Trident2e From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (10 years 9 months 1 week 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 3079 times:
Great report. I have to say though that you were mad to travel with BA on those awful RJs - I would do anything to avoid them! As for the cabin crew, remember that most of us British people don't speak a second language. I know we should do, but our education system simply isn't geared up to it. We've become far too complacent about expecting everyone else to speak English. Of course I include myself in this, otherwise I would have posted this reply in Spanish!