This is the second part of my trip report, the return flight from JFK
Well after Two exciting nights in NYC it was time to head back to the UK. Our flight wasnt until 1900 so the wife had me trailing around Tiffanys and Bloomindales in the afternoon, even with my hangover from hell
We jumped a cab back to the airport around 1600 and has the craziest taxi drver in the world. He was some guy from the Ukraine who would ask you for any date special to you and he would tell you what day that date fell on. He was quite nice actually if not a little crazed.
The cab ride took around an hour as the traffic was horrendous. The cab driver told us that this was the norm but I would hate to think I had to use that interstate every day.
Using this road and being stuck in really slow traffic we got quite a good view of departing aircraft out of LGA
I managed to snap a quick pick of this US Airways Dash 8
We arrived at Terminal 7 around 1700 and made our way to the BA
check-in desks. We stood in queue for about 10minutes and then it was our turn to check-in. Making our way forward to the dsk we wee greeted by a lovely lady called Janice. She was so helpful and just pleasant and just oozed customer service, even though we were staff. I asked her how the flight was looking and she said that it was looking quite busy but said that I would probably be given a seat in World Traveller Plus. To be honest I think she is the nicest BA
staff member Ive ever come across in any airport ive travelled through. We could do with more like her
She handed us our boarding cards and wished us a safe journey and we then made our way to security. I thought this part was going to take an age but we were through in about 7 or 8 minutes.
Having been in the states for 2 days I still hadnt tried a Maccy D's so the wife ordered me to stand in the queue. This was the funniest Mc D's I've ever had the misfortune to visit. I would be surprised if they dont have a staff turnover of 1per day, the manager was a right nasty piece of work. I ordered my big mac meal x2 and was waiting for it when the manager shouted ' Im goin to the crapper, d you think you guys can do the f*****g job without me for 10 minutes'. Well I was in stictches and so was this other English guy standing next to me.
We ate our meal and had an hour and 10minutes or so to kill until we were called to the BA
Customer service desk to get our boarding cards.
We had a bit of a walk around T7
and it was jst like being in LHR
with the amount of BA
flight/cabin crew i there.
We then took a seat in the gate 4 area and the Mr's just laughed at me as I sat there and described each plane and airline then went past the window, to her.
Where we were sitting had a good view of the runway and the aircraft were touching down right opposite us.
taxiing to the runway for take-off, well, the queue for take-off anyway
The gate area was quite busy and there was some wierd people sitting next to me. They were talkin to themselves and this one guy was reading his book out loud and making different voices for each different character. WTF, lets hope he's not on my plane and pray even more that if he is on my plane, that he's not sittin next to me.
A view of the gate 4 area of T7
Around 25mins before departure time we got called over to the Customer Service desk and were handed our boarding cards. 44J and K. Aaaarrgghh. wheres my lovely new club world seat
No, really, I was just glad to get on the flight.
We went and stood in the queue for boarding and in within 10 minutes we were on the plane, greeted yet again by a smiling cabin crew member and the CSD. It was a long walk down to the back of the plane and the Club world cabin again looked fantastic with its nice pristine white seats. We passed through Club World and then through World Traveller Plus which was quite full which is very unusual as it's normally quite empty on the flights ive been on.
We got to our row and their was someone sitting in the aisle seat. It was also very hot and within minutes I was sweating my plums off. Everyone was complaining about the heat and there was a girl in seat 43H who wasnt felling to well because of it. A cabin crew member came over and asked her if she was ok and I heard him consulting with the Purser to see if they should discuss offloading her. To be honest she didnt look too well and she filled 4 sick bags before we even began push back.
We pushed back at 1905 and began our taxi towards rthe runway. The Captain came over the tannoy and introduced himself, the FO and his CSD. He also advised that the engineering team had been doing some work on the aircraft and that they'd had to turn the AC
off to do this. He explained that it would be hotter towards the back of the aircraft but the temperature was dropping now that the engines were started and that once we took off it would cool down quite quickly.
An A330 taking a bit of a crazy aproach
As we were taxiing to the runway I caught a quick view of the planes in front of us. There must have been a queue of about 45 minutes which the Captain confirmed about 2 minutes later. There were a lot of planes about on different taxiways including alot of small comuter planes ie ERJ's and CRJ's
757 with AF
747 in the background
We were about 10 minutes from entering the runway when one of thecabin crew members came down to me and the wife and asked if after take-off we could make our way to seats 13F and G
BONUS, the New Club World was coming to me!!! Yeah
As you can tell both Mrs Burnett and I were very happy and looking forward to checking out the new seats and actually having a good nights sleep.
About 10 minutes later the very same cabin crew member came down the aisle, stopped next to our row and asked ' Mr and Mrs Burnett, could you make that seats 29F and G?' yeah no probs I said whilst actually wanting to say NO to him. FYI 27FG are in World Traveller Plus.
Hey I was still happy that I was going to be sitting in WTP as the bird in front of us was still filling sick bags like there was no tomorrow.
We pulled onto the active runway, I dont know which one it was though, maybe someone can help me out here. I know there was water on our right hand side and the taxiway was on our left. the take-off run was quite a long one and we slowly climbed into the night sky.
After about 10-15 minutes the fasten seat belt signs went off and me and the wife amde our way to our new seats. There were quite a lot of people on the move and it looked like a few people had been bumped upto Club.
The new seats were ok and as I had travelled in this cabin quite a few times before I knew what to expect.
The crew came round asking what drinks people wanted so I took a Gin and Tonic, a white wine x2 and a can of Stella.
I took a quick look at the moving ma and we were making good prgress already
The meal service started and I opted for the Chicken with rice which also contained cous cousand green beans and some disgusting sauce. I ate the chicken and headed straight for the stella I hadn't yet opened. Claire(the wife) was fast asleep and there was no disturbing her, not even with the turbulence we were going through.
I decided to watch Pursuit of Happiness with Will Smith in which was very good and passed a couple hours of flying time.
My only problem is I always want to look at the moving map whne Im watching a film. BONUS, the wife was alseep so I could look at hers.
Here we are Mid-Atlantic
After the film finshed I started to listen to one of the CD
's available,I cant remember what it was now but it helped me on my way to La La Land..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
I woke up about 2 hours later when we hit a bit of moderate chop and it must be a reflex action now, I switched on the moving map
Not long to go now
I started to watch Family Guy and couldnt stop laughing at it. I actually got stared at by some woman sitting in a window seat to my left as I think I woke her up. Ooops
The cabin crew soon came around with breakfast which not a lot of people took from them. Needless to say I took mine and finished the lot along with a black coffee.
The next hour passed like minutes and we were circling over London awaiting clearence to land at the centre of the universe, LHR
Our descent was a kind one with no bumps or side winds and we landed smoothly around 10mins early.
What I couldnt believe was that as we ended our taxi we were going to be at a remote gate. Ive never had this happen before at LHR
and was quite bemused.
One of the engines that had helped transport me across the Atlantic
There was 3 or 4 busses to transport us from the remote stand to T4
. Oncde in the terminal building it too us around 10minutes to reach immigration where the queue was quite big. I was hoping that we would have missed a lot of the early morning arrivals but they must have been delayed or something because the queues were huge.
Once immigration was cleared we made our way down to a chaotic baggage reclaim. LHR
must be one of the worst airports in the world for this in my opinion.
Once we had picked up our bags we made our way to the LHR
Express to get to T1. As on the weay to JFK
we just caught the train beofre it left the terminal and arrived in T1 in a further 5 minutes.
T1 wasnt as busy as I thought it was going to be for a monday morning and we went directly to the staff travel office. There were a few cabin crew members waiting for their flights back to the regions and we soon got served and issued with boarding cards for the flight to NCL
I was looking forward to this flight as it was going to be on a 757-200, one of my favourite planes. both the wife and I were shattered and just went straight to the gate even though there was about and hour and ten minutes before the flight.
The empty gate area
I watched people disembark from their planes and watched other aircraft taxi past.
777-300. My first time seeing one of these. BEAUTIFUL
An A320 pulled onto the gate after arriving from GLA
777-300 taking off
A320 taxiing to the runway
Watching out of the window I saw our 757 arrive and it looked tremendous. IMHO one of the best looking planes out there. Respect to 'THE FLYING PENCIL'
The passengers onboard soon disembarked and 20 minutes later it was our turn to start boarding. Again we were greeted by a smiling BA
cabin crew member and advised that my seat was in the rear section of the plane.
We were in seats 25B and C so we began the walk to our seats. We got to the back section of the plane and I was horrified. I wouldn't have expected this on a britannia flight back in 1974, The seats were horrendous, the cabon was so shabby and to be honest I was quite embarresed to be BA
I was actually thinking to myself that some people pay £300.00 upwards for a fully flexible ticket and might have to have to put up with this cabin. The seats were made of cloth and were a complete different shape to the fabulous leather seats 5 yards in front of me.
There were actually some Sunderland FC football players sitting about 4 rows behind me. God knows what they thought?
The toilet at the rear section of the plane
Another view of the cabin
After harrassing my wife with the thoughts on the cabin the aircraft beagn its pushback. It wasnt a long taxi to the runway and within 10 minutes we were airborne. Take-off was a blast and because we were so light we basically jumped into the air.This is one of the reasons I love the 757! During the take-off run the toilet doors in front of me had opened along with about 3 overhead lockers. Breakfast was served which consisted of a muesli bar and some coffee. Tne flight only lasted about 45 minutes and was quite bumpy until we reached the north-east and then it was staright sailng all the way in.
Touchdown was quite far down the runway but we soon slowed down to exit speed ans left the runway.
It was a great trip and I sampled some fantastic service from BA
. Even some of the passengers I spoke to on the plane agreed with me that BA
's service was one of the best offered trans-atlantic they didnt know I was BA
I would have loved to have travelled in the new Club World cabin but never mind. i'll leave the trip reports on that to Fgbdavidson or Wrightbrothers