Me again, this time on another domestic adventure! As i've been having a hard time recently, one of my mates decided to cheer me up by flying me up north for the weekend and just hanging out! Of course, anyone who knows me knows i don't do trains so here's the flight reports!
Birmingham BHX - Edinburgh EDI
Aircraft: Avro RJ100
Seat: 16F Window
Estimated Time of Departure: 2030
Actual Time of Departure: 2035
Estimated Time of Arrival: 2140
Actual Time of Arrival: 2135
GMT difference: +0
Photo © Ben Pritchard
So the journey begins, and as I was working on the departure day, had to catch the last flight upto Edinburgh with British Airways. I work in Birmingham city centre so catching the cattlewagon (virgin trains) over to the airport took no less than ten mins and then the shuttle over to the pub (erm terminal one excuse me hehe). Had a pint and peanuts already waiting for me along with my mate who was coming on the weekend with me. Once done, we made our way over to check in, and there was no queue in terminal two when we had to do this. Three flights departed within five minutes of each other, and would be the last three of the day from terminal two. These would be a SN Brussels Airlines A319 to Brussels, Aer Lingus 737-500 to Dublin and our flight to Edinburgh.
The check in agent was semi-friendly, and quick. We had been allocated seats 16E/F so we knew it would be an avro. The flight to EDI arrives in from Milan and some passengers go on through to EDI. On the screens it was due in ontime so guess this was going to be pretty uneventful. Terminal 2 or Eurohub as it was known, is pretty small and still has some signs in the old BA classic livery, oh and a duo lounge. The shops are fairly decent with a bit of everything from electronics to a newsagents. The views across to Terminal 1 are ok, if it wasnt for some of the bars! A Thomas Cook 757-200 parked on stand 40, followed by a My Travel A321-200 on stand 41 and a My Travel Lite hybrid on the end. We sat down and waited.....and waited....and waited.... and come 2010 all the other flights have been called bar ours, not even a gate number for ours yet. The final boarding call was made for EI and SN (our flight was meant to leave first) and ooh finally a boarding call for all passengers onboard BA4186 to Edinburgh! We proceeded down to the gate and found BZAW on stand for us. There was a few passengers already onboard when we took to our seats, though the flight wasnt 100% full.
We pushed back slightly late though the other EI and SN was still on stand also pushing back at the same time. Our engines started up, and started the long taxi down to R15 in amongst the safety demo.
Once lined up, engines reved a little though one on my side seemed to glow orange/yellow and the rest didnt. Take off and rotation was done in 24 seconds accoring to my mate hehe and once level crew came round with a sandwhich and a drink from the daily deli selection. The flight was smooth, not that you could see anything outside!! The engine that had the yellowy/orange look to it didnt have any jetblast coming out the back so i guess it had been hit to idle or cut off completly - as it wasnt making much noise either.
30 mins into the flight we began our decent for EDI, approching from the south nice and slowly until about 8-10 mins from landing when hell broke loose flaps became noisy, gear went down, thrust down to idle and the nose went down a little for our traditional 146 approach! The wings had vortexs coming off it 95% of the time as we were on finals and short finals and we hit the ground with a big thud! no bouce or anything and reverse thrust was maxed. He had aimed for a turning but even applying the breaks on max we just missed it so turned round on the runway and crept into it, parking on stand a few mins later, with a British Airways 757-200 on stand next to us and a bmi A320 taxing out for departure.
All in all a good quick point to point domestic flight, crew and service were both decent and despite my reservations with the Avro I really enjoyed this flight. Upon speaking to a BA pilot I know on Sunday, i found out that BZAW stayed in EDI overnight and the engine was looked at, it's believed that it overheated during take off and was set to idle. As the aircraft had 3 more engines it wasn't a problem and the captain didnt see any cause for immediate concern. Only going by what i've been told!.....
Edinburgh EDI - Birmingham BHX
Aircraft: Embraer ERJ145
Seat: 04C Window
Estimated Time of Departure: 1115
Actual Time of Departure: Ontime
Estimated Time of Arrival: 1225
Actual Time of Arrival: 1215
GMT difference: +0
Photo © T Silgrim
I had a wicked weekend shame it had to all come to an end really! Anyway as I have work tomorrow best to show my face! We arrived at EDI for our flight home after catching the airport bus over from the city centre, and the check in agent (after a big queue) was really helpful, and allocated us 04B/C one of which was a window - so obvioulsy not an RJ100 this time, but an ERJ145.
We proceded through security, and waited at the gate, where the aircraft arrived not long after. Air Scotland/Greece Airways departed for Malaga, EasyJet to London Gatwick, bmi to London Heathrow and on the arrivals, Eurocypria 737-800W landed from LCA, GermanWings landed from CGN, and there was a Globespan.com 737-300 on stand. bmi departed for Jersey just ahead of our flight being called. Today we was flying on BA1780 bound for Dusseldorf via Birmingham.
Boarding came 15 mins ahead of our estimated departure time and was done so fast if you blinked you would have missed it! We took our seats and there was 25 + 2 passengers onboard todays flight. There was a lady onboard who was scared of flying and there was another lady who was travelling with her husband and her two infants (hence the +2). They sat in seats next to the window but the crew was trying to move them because there is only 3 oxygen masks fitted to the overhead dispensers in that side of the ERJ so they would have to split up of which they were unhappy about and it didnt make the person who was scared of flying any more comfortable either! Anyway that all sorted, doors were shut and we pushed back off stand jsut behind schedule.
We lined up, and zoomed down the runway shooting like a rocket into the sky, the ERJ's are nice aircraft but the rate of climb on them things make me think NASA designed them! The skies were a little rough in patches, but ok once we reached our crusing altitude. Again we had the daily deli with a choice of drink served with the additional choice of tea/coffee. The route took us down to Manchester then down into Birmingham, pretty straight forward really. We came through the clouds to be met by a fantastic panoramic view of Birmingham city centre, with the Bull Ring, New Street and the surrounding areas all in sight.... I followed the local motorway and found the town I live in! Never seen it from the air before but still looks no better, surrounded by cows and all! We had a few hard left turns onto R33 approach coming in over the motorway and touching down quite softly onto the ground and the long taxi back to stand. No transit annoucement was made onboard so I guess nobody was going on to DUS from EDI, this was confirmed when everyone off the flight headed towards the baggage reclaim section.
In focus, the ERJ is a fantastic little shuttle run, I really like these, and found it much better than the Avro counterpart - maybe not for cabin space obviously, but definatly in comfort and ease. I would love to fly the ERJ again, and once again Im not dissapointed with any aspect of the service offered by British Airways Citiexpress.
Well Done and a big thumbs up to BA!