jsnww81
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Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Wed Nov 09, 2005 1:37 pm

I just purchased an ORD-CDG-MAD-LHR-ORD roundtrip for early next month. The transatlantic legs are on American Airlines, but the CDG-MAD and MAD-LHR segments will be on Iberia's A320s.

My questions:
-- I wasn't able to select a seat for these flights on AA.com. When I called American, they said Iberia does not assign seats on these flights until you check in at the airport. Is this true? Can I call Iberia to try and get an assigned seat?

-- I'm very particular about where I sit... I'd really like a window seat for the approach into Madrid. Here's my problem... I arrive at CDG at about 8:30am. My flight to Madrid leaves at 10:50am. By the time I clear customs and get from CDG-2A to CDG-2D, it will be at least 9:30am. Will there be any window seats left by then?

I'd appreciate help and guidance from anyone who's familiar with Iberia. Thanks!
 
Toulouse
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Wed Nov 09, 2005 5:28 pm

Go to: http://www.iberia.com/OneToOne/v3/busqueda.do in which Iberia offer there online checkin service allowing you to checkin on-line, but this is on the Spain page and from what I can see it is only open to passengers who reserved their tickets in the EU or Switzerland, so if you booked your entire journey in the US, I don't think you'll be able to checkin in advance.

I don't think transfer from CDG-2A to 2D will take you too long. I think all you can do is cross your fingers and get through as quickly as possible in the hope there are still window seats available. Just ask when you're checking-in. I suppose if that doesn't work, you cuold ask a passenger to change seat with you onec onboard... sometimes that works, others it doesn't.

By the way, when are you travelling. Most of Iberia's flights from Orly to Mad. For CDG-MAD this month all I can see are 2 daily IB flights from from CDG, IB3435 departing at 11:45 and IB3433 departing at 18:15??
Long live Aer Lingus!
 
Toulouse
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Wed Nov 09, 2005 5:37 pm

Sorry, I see you actually stated you're flying next month. Just cheked Amadeus for December CDG-MAD and only the two flights I mentioned above, so are you sure you have the correct times, as the only morning flight with IB I see departs at 11.45am. Also of interest possible to you, I see this flights is operated by different a/c types depending on the day, a mixture of 320's, 319's and MD81's, while the evening flight is always operated by the 320.
Long live Aer Lingus!
 
TriStar500
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Wed Nov 09, 2005 5:53 pm

The "MD81" is actually Iberia's internal code for a reconfigured MD-87 with high density seating, where the galleys are in large parts removed from the cabin.
Homer: Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
 
Toulouse
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Wed Nov 09, 2005 6:52 pm

Quoting TriStar500 (Reply 3):
The "MD81" is actually Iberia's internal code for a reconfigured MD-87 with high density seating, where the galleys are in large parts removed from the cabin.

Thanks for the clarification TriStar500!
Long live Aer Lingus!
 
jsnww81
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Wed Nov 09, 2005 9:57 pm

Toulouse -

I must be flying on the 11:45 flight then. I didn't have my itinerary in front of me and was just guessing from memory. I guess that gives me a little more time - but I'm still afraid there won't be any window seats left by the time I get there.

I'm also wondering if I can thru-check my luggage all the way to Madrid when I check in at Chicago O'Hare. Will I have to reclaim it in Paris? If so, that's a real pain in the ass. Doesn't say much for the convenience of airline alliances like Oneworld...
 
Aisak
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Wed Nov 09, 2005 11:35 pm

AS IB and AA are both Oneworld you will be given both boarding passes (with a seat assigned, ask for an special seat there) in ORD (ORD-CDG and CDG-MAD) and your luggage will be checked in to MAD...

You will arrive in CDG from outside a Schengem country so you'll definitely have to go thru inmigration/passport check.
After claiming your luggage and clear customs you'll need to re-check you luggage simply handing it in in a "special counter" which will be past the customs area... If not you'll have to check it your luggage in at an IB counter...

If for any reason you miss your CDG-MAD (delays are typical on lon-haul flights) ask for the transit desks where someone will transfer your booking to another flight

I don't know how Aéroports de Paris will handle it but i'm pretty sure it will be the first case. You may find more info on http://www.aeroportsdeparis.fr/ADP/e...ansAeroport/LesTerminaux/plans.htm
and http://www.aeroportsdeparis.fr/ADP/e...sDuPassager/DevisesAchatsDouanes/?

The outbound flights should be easier as you transits in an EU airport... Your luggage for MAD-LHR-ORD will be check-in through and you'll need to pass the passport checks in LHR (as GB is not part of the Schengem traty) to clear your transit but no need to go thru customs as you are not staying....


Hope you enjoy in MAD
 
Aisak
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Wed Nov 09, 2005 11:40 pm

I forgot to say

You'll arrive at T2 in MAD... The CDG-MAD leg is like a domestic flight (like any flight wholy within the US) you'll get you luggage and go

That's why you have to clear inmigration and customs in CDG. You'll be given a Schengem visa which will allow you to travel freely within the 12 Schengem countries
 
jsnww81
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 12:15 am

Thanks Aisak. So I can get my seat assignment in Chicago? That's a big relief. I like a window seat behind the wings, so I get pretty picky. I'm planning to shoot videos while departing/arriving that I can post with my trip report.

I figured I would probably arrive into Madrid's T2. That's disappointing... I wanted a Spanish stamp in my passport. Maybe if I ask nicely they'll give me one.  Smile I'm looking forward to seeing the current Madrid terminal complex before IB/Oneworld move over to T4. I hear it's very crowded and kind of run-down, but I'm a big fan of "classic" airports.

Another question - when landing at MAD, is there a typical pattern for arrivals and departures? I've flown into Barajas once, in 1998, and we landed on runway 31 (now 31L). The approach was over a lot of satellite towns like Mejorada del Campo, but it was still interesting to see the Spanish landscape down below. I'm hoping we come in from that direction again.
 
TriStar500
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 12:18 am

Quoting Jsnww81 (Reply 8):
I figured I would probably arrive into Madrid's T2. That's disappointing... I wanted a Spanish stamp in my passport. Maybe if I ask nicely they'll give me one.

Should be difficult since there are usually no immigration officers waiting at the entrance to the Schengen Area baggage claim. It's like a domestic flight.  Smile
Homer: Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
 
Icaro
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 2:07 am

Quoting Jsnww81 (Reply 8):
I'm planning to shoot videos while departing/arriving that I can post with my trip report.

You shouldn't be doing that. All kind of electronic devices are forbidden during take off and landing. The crew will tell you to switch it off. Nothing to do with IB, just Spanish regulations.
Sorry
 
jsnww81
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 3:43 am

Quoting Icaro (Reply 10):
You shouldn't be doing that. All kind of electronic devices are forbidden during take off and landing.

Yes, well, they say that here in the US too. A digital camera gives off a very weak signal if it gives off any signal at all. A quick visit to www.flightlevel350.com would suggest that I'm not the only one breaking the rule...  angel 
 
jsnww81
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 5:39 am

Another question, relating more to Madrid airport -

What's the best way to get into the city? I've checked the Aena website and it looks like I can take either a bus, the Metro or a Renfe Cercanias train. Is there one way that's faster than another? I haven't booked my hotel yet, so I don't know where I'm staying, but I imagine it will be somewhere in the city center area. I'd like to stay near the Prado Museum, but that's an expensive area... I may end up closer to the Plaza de Espana and Gran Via.
 
anxebla
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 6:18 am

Quoting Jsnww81 (Reply 12):
I'd like to stay near the Prado Museum, but that's an expensive area... I may end up closer to the Plaza de Espana and Gran Via.

The Prado Museum area could be expensive if you try to stay in hotels such as "Ritz" or "Palace" which are the two most expensives in the Spain's capital.

Anyhow, from the airport the best solution is take a taxi if you have a lot of luggage or if not, take the bus number 200 and then the metro network. You also can take the metro in the airport ...all depends where you want to go in downtown Madrid
AIRBUS 320 The world's most advanced single-aisle aircraft
 
IBERIA747
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 6:45 am

Quoting Jsnww81 (Reply 8):
Another question - when landing at MAD, is there a typical pattern for arrivals and departures? I've flown into Barajas once, in 1998, and we landed on runway 31 (now 31L). The approach was over a lot of satellite towns like Mejorada del Campo, but it was still interesting to see the Spanish landscape down below. I'm hoping we come in from that direction again.

The correct runway number is 33L.

Well, most of the time yes...that's the "normal" approach into MAD. Many times when approaching Madrid inbound from the Americas we have flown over Talavera de la Reina and Illescas before entering the landing path and getting "in the line" for landing. Have turned left near Morata de Tajuña. After that, we have flown straight over Arganda del Rey, Mejorada del Campo, San Fernando de Henares and finally we have crossed the A-2 motorway before touching down.
During the left turn it's quite common to see the aircraft that are in front/behind on the approach.

Of course if you're coming from CDG then you could approach the airport area circling either by the east or west of MAD. If your flight circles by the west of MAD and you're sitting on the left, you'll have AMAZING views of the entire city and the complete MAD airport complex in the distance.

If the pilot enters the approach path by the east then you will only see dry landscapes, and won't see anything "interesting" until you have turned right over Morata and have started the final approach.

I suggest to get a seat on the left side of the aircraft. Of course, if the wind changes and the airport goes to south configuration then you will just fly straight in from the north and will land on runway 18R (most probably, except for the possibility that 18L could be the runway in use). In that case the better views are from the right side of the aircraft, but they're not really good.

[Edited 2005-11-09 22:54:48]
¡¡VIVA ESPAÑA!!
 
jsnww81
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 7:36 am

IBERIA747:
Thanks for the information. Back in 1998 I was coming from Philadelphia on a US Airways 767. I'm fairly certain we came in from the south over Illescas and then turned left. It was very cloudy, and I distinctly remember dropping out of the clouds in the middle of a long left turn. I also remember the A2 motorway - I could read the writing on a MoviStar billboard. At the time I thought it had something to do with movies, not "moviles."  Smile

Hopefully we will make a landing on one of the 33 runways. I will try for a seat numbered "A" so I can be on the left-hand side during our approach. Is 33R open for arrivals yet?

Anxebla:
I probably will take a train. From what I've read, I can take the Metro from Barajas Airport and only change once (at Mar de Cristal?) before I get into the central city. Is that correct? I won't have a lot of luggage, but I remember what traffic was like on the M-30 and M-40 motorways. I'd rather not get stuck!

I will almost certainly be staying in a small inexpensive hotel. On my trip to Madrid in 1998 we stayed next door to the Principe Pio train station. It didn't seem like a very nice neighborhood, and we could hear the trains all night long from our room. I'd like to stay a little more to the east this time.

Thanks for your comments/advice!
 
anxebla
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RE: Flying Iberia - Seating Questions

Thu Nov 10, 2005 8:03 am

Quoting Jsnww81 (Reply 15):
I probably will take a train. From what I've read, I can take the Metro from Barajas Airport and only change once (at Mar de Cristal?) before I get into the central city. Is that correct?

If you wish to take train, you firstly must go to "Nuevos Ministerios" Railway Station from the airport (line 8 which is the pink link) To get the central area you can change in the "Mar de Cristal", "Colombia" or "Nuevos Ministerios" Metro Stations ...again all depends the area which you wish to go.


Info in English about Madrid


Have a look ...it is the official web of the Madrid City Council. Pretty comprehensive and easy to use. You can find Tourist and accommodation Information as well

Quoting Jsnww81 (Reply 15):
Thanks for your comments/advice!

You're welcome  Smile
AIRBUS 320 The world's most advanced single-aisle aircraft