EFHK
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Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Thu Nov 01, 2007 8:58 pm

Hi all,

this is my second trip report on A.net. Photos are not always the best quality but hopefully they will be sufficient for this purpose. And of course, any feedback or comments are welcome!  Smile

So let's get started. The decision of making this trip was made quite hurriedly in last May, when Finnair had a supercheap offer for flights from Helsinki to Delhi, roundtrip costing 299€. The offer was promoted for only one weekend, so there wasn't really any time to consider, and finally the fact that the offer was extended trough the fall vacation week in October made us buy the tickets. So that was the beginning of a family vacation in India, a country where none of us had ever been before.

The flying part of the trip - important to me - would consist of two flights on Finnair's MD-11s. Delhi is a quite new destination for AY, the flights were started on 30th October 2006. DEL is a part of the expansion in Asia, and recently especially in India, the Delhi flights are already daily (started 3x week) and a new service was launched to BOM, which is at the moment 5x weekly. The MD-11s are still the backbone of AY's long-haul fleet, with 7 examples in service. AY also has three A340-300s in its long-haul fleet. The Airbuses, two of which were delivered this summer factory fresh to Finnair have modern cabins with PTVs etc, but the MD-11s haven't got and won't get this cabin upgrade as they're being replaced with new A343s and A333s from 2009. The last MD-11 flight in Finnair's colours will take place in fall 2010. So these flights might have been, though hopefully not, my last flights in the old and sturdy tri-holer.

On the day of the departure we arrived at the airport quite late, an hour before departure, which is usual when travelling with my family.  bored  However, it didn't cause any problems as there were virtually no queues to check-in desks or security control. At this time of the day (1pm) HEL is still relatively quiet, and the fact that it was Sunday reduced the amount of passengers even more. after security it was time to head for the non-schengen area, and through passport control. Passengers on our flight were asked to go to gate early, which indicated that there would be no delay in departure.

Early afternoon long-hauls to DEL and JFK departing on time.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0464.jpg

Date: 14th October 2007
Airline: Finnair
Route: Helsinki (HEL, EFHK) - Delhi (DEL, VIDP)
Flight number: AY021
Aircraft type: Boeing/McDonnell Douglas MD-11
Registration: OH-LGE
Scheduled departure: 14:15
Actual pushback time: 14:16
Takeoff: 14:27
Scheduled Arrival: 23:25
Actual Landing: 23:45
Planned flight time: 6h 40min
Actual flight time: 6h 48min
Seat: 29L



OH-LGE ready at gate 31 for a flight to Delhi.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0468.jpg

Boarding was started half an hour before departure. I still can't understand the reason why all people seem to have a tremendous hurry to board the aircraft, even the ones with a place to sit at the gate stand up and join the long boarding queue. And the same thing goes for exiting the aircraft after arrival at the gate. Why does everybody have to stand up immediately and block the aisles?  Silly

Anyways, we boarded our aircraft and took our seats. I had reserved us seats from the 9-abreast front section of AY's MD-11 economy class cabin already when booking the flight (the rear section is 10-abreast). The rear section is often criticized for being a bit cramped, but at least this front section had enough space for me.

Legroom - OK
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0469.jpg

On long-haul flights Finnair has a bottle of water in the seat pocket ready for you already when boarding.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0472.jpg

Boarding was completed early and we pushed back on our way only one minute behind schedule.

Santa was flying to JFK "aboard" OH-LGG for the third time this fall.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0471.jpg

MD-11's GE CF6 engine as seen from my seat  Silly
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0473.jpg

It was raining during pushback, note the temporary superlong jetbridge of gate 33 during construction work.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0475.jpg

This is how empty HEL can be on Sunday just before rush hour!
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0476.jpg

We taxied to runway 22R and took off about 10 minutes behind schedule.


After takeoff we remained quite long covered by the clouds, but eventually saw the sunshine.

But as so often, unfortunately no ground!  wideeyed 
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0479.jpg

Food service was started quickly after takeoff, which consisted of these lovely small crackers and a drink service.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0481.jpg

Well nah, Finnair isn't an American carrier, so we did get food also.  Wink (No offence intended.  duck  Wink There was a choice of a meat or a vegetarian meal, and I chose the meat option. This is lamb (in a sauce which started with an R) with rice, cucumber salad, apple pie and bread.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0484.jpg

After that the flight went on smoothly. Two movies were shown, the animation "Meet the Robinsons" and a Bollywood movie "Fool 'N' Final". Cruise altitude was FL360. Because of clouds there weren't much to see from the window, other than various stages of sunset.

http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0486.jpg

http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0487.jpg

http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0488.jpg

http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0491.jpg

It's freezing outside!  duck 
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0489.jpg

http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0492.jpg

After sunset there was really no point taking pictures (or landing videos), so the only illustration of the rest of the flight is this sandwich, which was served about one and half hours before landing.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0495.jpg

Delhi had some heavy traffic that night so we had to do two circles in a holding pattern, and landing was made from a totally opposite direction than which would have been fastest for our route, we landed on runway 28. Eventually it caused us to be 20 minutes late on arrival. We headed for immigration and baggage claim, where our baggage was already waiting!

So now we were in India, and Delhi's smog was the first thing we noticed. We could smell some of it already in the airplane after landing. But it didn't really bother me that much. We had booked a guided tour for our whole journey, and we would be travelling by the tour operator's private car. So we had to search for our driver from the seemingly endless line of people in the arrivals hall, all with a sign with a different name in it. Eventually we found him and we could get on our way to explore the country. Our routing would be Delhi-Jaipur-Ranthambore-Agra-Delhi, all journeys done by the car. It was a great way to see what India is truly like. I was also glad that I had mentally prepared myself enough for the culture shock, so I could enjoy the trip from the very beginning. Just some photos from India though:

A street in Old Delhi near our hotel
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0503.jpg

Some ministries in New Delhi
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0514.jpg

And the presidential palace
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0516.jpg

Amber Fort near Jaipur, maharajah's old palace
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0554.jpg

Jaipur's City palace
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0605.jpg

Ranthambore National park
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0703.jpg

Agra Fort
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0772.jpg

And the Taj Mahal
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0802.jpg

Delhi Fort
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0841.jpg

And then it was time to head home, after a week in India.  Smile

Date: 22nd October 2007
Airline: Finnair
Route: Delhi (DEL, VIDP) - Helsinki (HEL, EFHK)
Flight number: AY022
Aircraft type: Boeing/McDonnell Douglas MD-11
Registration: OH-LGE, again
Scheduled departure: 03:15
Actual pushback time: 03:25
Takeoff: 03:35
Scheduled Arrival: 08:15
Actual Landing: 08:00
Planned flight time: 7h 30min
Actual flight time: 6h 55min
Seat: 29L



Our flight would leave at 3am on the 22nd, so our driver dropped us at the airport at about 9pm on the 21st and we said him farewell. We had thought there would be enough things to do at the airport, maybe sit in some restaurant or shop, and I had thought of trying to find a good place to plane spot. Well, it soon became quite obvious that no, you just can't do that in Delhi. It already seemed strange that there were queues to the terminal and by the entrances there were some security personnel checking passengers' tickets. When it was our turn, we were denied entering the terminal. We were told that only passengers who had less than four hours before their flight was scheduled to depart could enter the terminal and we were directed to a waiting area on the opposite side of the road. Well OK, we had about two hours to spend there and there would probably be a restaurant or something.

When we got to the entrance we noticed that there was an entrance fee of 30 Indian rupees per person. Well, that wasn't much (about 0,6€ or 1$) but it was still strange. And that fee gives you three hours to sit and wait there. Only reason I can think of is that the fee and time limit is meant to keep the homeless away. When we got in, I noticed a man arguing with some member of staff at an opposite entrance ( I assume) whether he could go to the restaurant and come back with the same ticket to the waiting area that he had already paid for or not. And the guidance to the restaurant was through the chargeable waiting hall!  Silly Oh well...

So, we sat in front of a TV and spent the two hours looking at a program called "Cricket controversies" or reading aviation magazines.  Wink

Eventually the program wasn't that interesting, but the news had some worth though.  Wink
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0849.jpg

Encouraged by this important piece of news (and more importantly at the right time) we made our second attempt at entering the terminal, which was this time successful, and proceeded to the check-in counters. That also was a mistake, because apparently we should have gotten our to-be-checked-in baggage screened before joining the check-in queue. Well, luckily someone told us that early enough so that we could have them screened without having to lose our position in the queue (and that someone wasn't the person behind us  Wink ). The check-in process lasted somewhat longer than usually but we didn't encounter any problems. After that we wondered a bit where to go, because the whole place seemed to be under construction work, but we soon found that out and headed towards passport control. What was interesting in that process was that we got our boarding passes stamped too.

So then we were finally in the area where we could do shopping or eat, but the area was very small, considering that this was the international airport of the capital of the world's second most populated country. To illustrate this I have two photos taken at the exactly same place (in a hurry because I didn't like the idea of taking photographs carefully in the place which was full of security personnel, whose attitude towards airport photography I did not know).

The other side....
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0855.jpg

....and the other side.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0856.jpg

While waiting for our flight to depart another problem arised. Apparently at the security check (which was right in front of the gate area) the personnel wouldn't let people through if all their hand luggage didn't have a Finnair-tag on them. Huh. Well, we weren't given any Finnair-tags to put on our carry-on luggage at the check-in and it seemed that nobody else was either. So there we were unable to go through the security, with some staff constantly hurrying us to go there.  Silly The only solution was to wait for some Finnair personnel to come and hand out the tags (which eventually happened). In the meantime I gathered some attention due to my t-shirt; I was dressed in my dark blue official Finnair t-shirt which I wear always when flying, so I got some hopeful looks whether I was the member of Finnair's staff to come hand out the tags. Big grin Well, on the negative side I had to explain some people that I wasn't officially a staff member, but on the positive side those people were some young and pretty girls, who seemed to like my uniform.  Cool

Before boarding we still had to go through some hassle, because the security check procedures were quite complicated. First our boarding passes were checked. Then we were divided to two different lines, one for men and one for women. Then we went through the metal detector, and even though the detector remained silent everybody had to go through a "manual" check also. Then our boarding passes were checked and stamped again. Then they were stamped again. (My description might really be inaccurate because it seemed they were checked and stamped all the time.) Then we had to wait in the gate area for a relatively short time before boarding. In the boarding queue there was again a person who checked that all our carry-on luggage had Finnair tags on them and after that our boarding passes were checked by Finnair personnel, and then by some security personnel and then again by Finnair personnel, I really don't remember but it was crazy. But eventually we got onboard!

Boarding was completed again quite early, but we had to wait for our pushback clearance some 10 minutes, during which I had time to observe arrivals at gates next to ours.

I really shouldn't take photos during nighttime, but here's an ET B763, a MU A332 and an EK B773.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0859.jpg

So, our pushback was ten minutes behind schedule and takeoff another 10 minutes later from runway 10. We did a nice right-hand turn for our route to Helsinki, during which it was nice to watch the night lights of Southwestern Delhi.

Soon after takeoff a snack was served in the form of this sandwich, yoghurt and Kitkat.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0864.jpg

The cabin lights were dimmed after that and at least 90% of passengers on the flight were asleep for that part of the flight. Movies shown on this return leg were "Ocean's 13" and a Bollywood movie "MP3 - Mera Pehla Pehla Pyaar". Cruise altitude was FL350. The route from Helsinki to Delhi (and back) goes trough Estonia, Western Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan and Pakistan.

A blue moment
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0866.jpg

Sunrise was long and nice to watch, as much as I could, because cabin crew wanted the window shades to be shut for the people to get better some sleep.

http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0867.jpg

http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0872.jpg

Breakfast was served two hours before landing. Again there was a choice of a meat and a vegetarian meal.

And I support meat  Wink Sausages with mashed egg and potatoes, fruits, yoghurt, a pastry, bread and mango juice.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0871.jpg

Descending over the Gulf of Finland
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0874.jpg

And then we lined up for an approach and landing to runway 22L, 15 minutes ahead of schedule.


We arrived at gate 31 - the same gate we departed from, and in the same aircraft! OH-LGE is the youngest MD-11 in Finnair's fleet, it was delivered in 1998 for Citybird. So it's not so old after all!  Wink

Arrived at gate 31, Airbuses getting ready for flights to Europe.
http://i179.photobucket.com/albums/w315/EFHK/CIMG0876.jpg

In Helsinki there were no queues for immigration or anything, and even the bags arrived quite early at the belt. A good trip in India's hot +33C temperatures was over and it was time to get used to again in Finland's +0C.  Silly

So all in all... Finnair provided the standard service as always. Flights were on time and most of all, cheap.  Wink Looks like the Finns are going to benefit from AY's growth in Asia in the form of cheap tickets to fill up seats for new destinations or somewhere where the demand isn't that strong. And India is a nice place to visit, if you are aware of the fact that it will be very different from a Western society and travel with an open mind.

Thanks for reading and I hope that you enjoyed this report!  Smile
One of the best places in the world: McDonald's in T2 at FRA.
 
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OA260
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Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:50 pm

RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Thu Nov 01, 2007 9:12 pm

Hi there very nice TR !!! The video take off was cool. The photos of Delhi brought back memories of when I was there. The Taj Mahal is amazing , it was one of the best experiences in all my years of travelling. Do you still get alot of people following you and trying to sell you things???

Anyway great TR

Thanks for sharing

OA260
 
B747forever
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Thu Nov 01, 2007 9:19 pm

What a great TR.

The pics and videos are really good.

Thank you for sharing.

B747forever.
Work Hard, Fly Right
 
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shamrock350
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Thu Nov 01, 2007 9:38 pm

Great report and amazing photos. It's great to see a Finnair MD-11 report and the photos of Delhi were really nice. I certainly enjoyed reading this report.

Quoting EFHK (Thread starter):
Food service was started quickly after takeoff, which consisted of these lovely small crackers and a drink service.

I remember getting something like them on Aer Lingus, I loved them and the FAs kept handing them out throughout the flight.


Shamrock350
 
EFHK
Topic Author
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Thu Nov 01, 2007 10:09 pm

Thanks for all comments so far!  Smile

Quoting OA260 (Reply 1):
Do you still get alot of people following you and trying to sell you things???

Oh yes... In every place you could imagine tourists ever going to! Even when the driver stops the car to go pay a "state entrance fee" in a small kiosk, there are meanwhile people knocking on the car's windows trying to sell you something.
One of the best places in the world: McDonald's in T2 at FRA.
 
buck3y3nut
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Fri Nov 02, 2007 12:46 am

wow great report. How were the load factors on both flights? Seems like AY has a decent product over the pond to DEL from HEL  Smile
 
sandrozrh
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids

Fri Nov 02, 2007 12:51 am

Terve! Very cool TR, thanks for your time.

How were the loads? I guess there were lots of different nationalities on board (especially western Europeans)?

€299 is a great deal, I could hardly have turned that down myself Big grin
 
andaman
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Fri Nov 02, 2007 1:48 am

Thanks for the report!
Yes Finnair offers really tempting prices from HEL to Asia every now and then, I am hoping to see a 399e deal to HKG soon again.. Not the biggest fan of their MD11, but if the price is right I don't mind.
Were there any native Indian F/A's on those flights?

Quoting Buck3y3nut (Reply 5):
Seems like AY has a decent product over the pond to DEL from HEL

Actually the DEL-HEL route goes more like over the desert  Wink
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
buck3y3nut
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Fri Nov 02, 2007 2:49 am

Quoting Andaman (Reply 7):
Actually the DEL-HEL route goes more like over the desert Wink

Ah yes... duly noted! Thanks for the correction mate. I guess for some reason I was thinking pond  Smile
Guess I can't edit it now Big grin
 
Door5Right
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Fri Nov 02, 2007 8:02 am

Interesting report and great picture of India, Mr EFHK. Any idea why the MD11 in Y class is partly 5 abreast then 6 abreast?
My soul is in the sky...
 
EFHK
Topic Author
Posts: 372
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Fri Nov 02, 2007 9:58 am

Thanks for all comments again!

Quoting Buck3y3nut (Reply 5):
How were the load factors on both flights?

On the way to Delhi loads were definitely over 90%, on the way back maybe about 80%.

Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 6):
I guess there were lots of different nationalities on board (especially western Europeans)?

Yes, but I don't think Western Europeans were necessarily in the majority. There were a lot of Indians and Eastern Europeans also. The whole idea in Finnair's Asia expansion is to get a lot of passengers from different countries so it makes a nice mix of nationalities on flights.

Quoting Andaman (Reply 7):
Were there any native Indian F/A's on those flights?

Yes, two per flight if I recall correctly. One of the Indian FAs were on our both flights.

Quoting Door5right (Reply 9):
Any idea why the MD11 in Y class is partly 5 abreast then 6 abreast?

Actually its 9 and 10, I'm not sure but it's got something to do with how much you pay for your ticket. With our tickets being so cheap we were able to reserve seats only on rows 28 and 29 of the 9-abreast section. I guess the rest of it is meant for frequent fliers and passengers with flexible tickets. I've read the exact (or more exact) reason for this somewhere but I can't remember it right now, will check.  Smile
One of the best places in the world: McDonald's in T2 at FRA.
 
DALCE
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Fri Nov 02, 2007 10:37 am

Hi EFHK,

Great report of a great trip!
Really loved your story about AY's product and their MD-11's
Thanks for sharing!

Brgds,
DALCE
flown: F50,F70,CR1,CR2,CR9,E75,143,AR8,AR1,733,735,736,73G,738,753,744,77W,788,319,320,321,333,AB6.
 
sandrozrh
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Fri Nov 02, 2007 1:05 pm

Quoting EFHK (Reply 10):

Yes, but I don't think Western Europeans were necessarily in the majority. There were a lot of Indians and Eastern Europeans also. The whole idea in Finnair's Asia expansion is to get a lot of passengers from different countries so it makes a nice mix of nationalities on flights.

Yeah, thats why i asked. I assumed western Europeans would make up the majority because they heavily marketed their "fastest way to Asia" product here, and in any other country ive been around here for the past few weeks.

Anyway, the more the better for AY  Smile
 
infodesk
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Sat Nov 03, 2007 10:09 am

Another very nice report and always good to read about AY. You certainly got a good deal for 299E.

I also enjoyed looking at your photos of India. Nice little anecdote about your finnair T-shirt! Do finnair staff comment on it when you're flying?

Kiitos and happy flying
Infodesk  spin 
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
ag92
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Sat Nov 03, 2007 10:50 am

Great trip report. Wow, people have already seen what I havent in my 18 trips to India

Quoting EFHK (Thread starter):
And the same thing goes for exiting the aircraft after arrival at the gate

The immigration queue in India can get long therefore what we usually do is because I love to sit at the back, my parents sit at the front and I at the back, so at immigration my father is first one off and than I just cut and join them.

Regards
Ag92
 
Thai744
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids

Sat Nov 03, 2007 12:20 pm

Nice TR.

Being Australian, AY is not a carrier we get to fly on very much!

But I have heard good reports on them, and hope to fly them soon.

Thanks for taking the time to write up your report - nice one!

[Edited 2007-11-03 05:21:05]
 
EFHK
Topic Author
Posts: 372
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Sun Nov 04, 2007 12:20 am

Thanks for all comments!

Quoting Infodesk (Reply 13):
Do finnair staff comment on it when you're flying?

Well, not really. But at least fellow passengers seem to usually notice it, and then look at me with various amounts of disbelief.  Silly

Quoting Ag92 (Reply 14):
The immigration queue in India can get long

Ok, that's a good point concerning flights with immigration requirements.
One of the best places in the world: McDonald's in T2 at FRA.
 
Aleksandar
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Sun Nov 04, 2007 4:09 am

Well, that's a nice TR  Smile

Quoting EFHK (Thread starter):
Photos are not always the best quality but hopefully they will be sufficient for this purpose.

Actually, your photos are just fine and some from India are even more than that. You really made some great shots there.

Finnair does seem fine, but do they plan to install some PTVs soon?
R-E-S-P-E-C-T
 
andaman
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Sun Nov 04, 2007 7:53 am

Quoting Thai744 (Reply 15):
Nice TR.
Finnair does seem fine, but do they plan to install some PTVs soon?

All their seven MD11's will leave the fleet 2008-2010, so no PTV's coming for those. Their A340's (and coming A330's) have the Panasonic-eX2 PTV system.


[Edited 2007-11-04 01:07:39]
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
Bofredrik
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Sun Nov 04, 2007 1:51 pm

Tks for a nice report!
I love the MD11.
 
mk777
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Mon Nov 05, 2007 4:27 am

great TR. I am glad you enjoyed India and my hometown Delhi. Seeing Delhi's pic, makes me want to go back right now for a visit...infact my yearly visit is due very soon.

AY seems like any other European airline for flights to India. I doubt i will ever get a chance to fly them.

Keep traveling and giving us more interesting reads and sights.  Smile
come fly with me
 
PlaneHunter
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Mon Nov 05, 2007 12:55 pm

Hi Jesse, very nice report - particularly interesting because I just came back from a Finnair trip to Japan.

Quoting EFHK (Thread starter):
Anyways, we boarded our aircraft and took our seats. I had reserved us seats from the 9-abreast front section of AY's MD-11 economy class cabin already when booking the flight (the rear section is 10-abreast). The rear section is often criticized for being a bit cramped, but at least this front section had enough space for me.

I had seat 28A yesterday and it felt extremely cramped - there's less legroom than on any domestic aircraft I had in Japan. Too bad we couldn't change the seat reservation, as we would have preferred the right side with only two seats next to each other. Luckily, there were some empty seats around so in the end I had the row for myself. But being stuck in such a row with two others in the middle and the aisle seat for 10 hours must be horrible. And that's only the 9-abreast section and not the 10-abreast section! More to follow in my reports in the next weeks.

Quoting EFHK (Thread starter):
MD-11's GE CF6 engine as seen from my seat

Familiar view - I also took many pics with the blue GE next to me!

Quoting EFHK (Thread starter):
There was a choice of a meat or a vegetarian meal, and I chose the meat option. This is lamb (in a sauce which started with an R) with rice, cucumber salad, apple pie and bread.

No choice on both our HEL-NGO and KIX-HEL flights - which is quite cheap for a long-haul carrier serving Japan. And the quality of the food was below average, too.

Quoting EFHK (Reply 10):
Yes, but I don't think Western Europeans were necessarily in the majority. There were a lot of Indians and Eastern Europeans also. The whole idea in Finnair's Asia expansion is to get a lot of passengers from different countries so it makes a nice mix of nationalities on flights.

There were about 80% Japanese passengers on our flights - quite interesting.


PH
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andaman
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:25 pm

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 21):

No choice on both our HEL-NGO and KIX-HEL flights - which is quite cheap for a long-haul carrier serving Japan. And the quality of the food was below average, too.

Food is AY's weak point. An opposite experience was a tasty cold chicken salad last summer on HEL-MAN when I flew their E170 for the first time - more like that please! I wish their long haul product was as good as their short hauls, generally speaking. Haven't tried their A340 yet myself, curious to see how's that like.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 21):

There were about 80% Japanese passengers on our flights - quite interesting.
PH

That's very typical, Japanese transit passengers are AY's core business.
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:33 pm

Quoting Andaman (Reply 22):
An opposite experience was a tasty cold chicken salad last summer on HEL-MAN when I flew their E170 for the first time - more like that please! I wish their long haul product was as good as their short hauls, generally speaking.

Indeed, the Euro services were good - an average sandwich on the morning flight from MUC on the E170, but a tasty warm "Beef Wallenberg" on the evening A320 service to MUC. I also like the video screens with moving map and front/down camera view.


PH
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Mon Nov 05, 2007 1:43 pm

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 23):

PH

Perhaps SK and AY should merge, after all... AY would handle the the Euro service and SK the long hauls, and everybody would be so much happier  Wink
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EFHK
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Mon Nov 05, 2007 3:45 pm

Thanks for all comments!

Quoting Aleksandar (Reply 17):
Actually, your photos are just fine and some from India are even more than that.

Thanks, they don't actually look all that bad in this thread.  Silly

Quoting Mk777 (Reply 20):
Keep traveling and giving us more interesting reads and sights.

I hope so, we're currently planning some interesting trips, I hope they'll come true!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 21):
I had seat 28A yesterday and it felt extremely cramped

Hi! People always tend to have mixed experiences concerning legroom, I'm not very big or tall so I rarely have issues with it. However, I think the legroom was somewhat smaller than in AY's Embraers and Airbuses.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 21):
No choice on both our HEL-NGO and KIX-HEL flights - which is quite cheap for a long-haul carrier serving Japan.

Yes, the choice of meals is only on flights to/from India due to many Indians being vegetarians.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 21):
There were about 80% Japanese passengers on our flights - quite interesting.

The DEL flights have been quite heavily marketed also to attract vacationers to India from Europe, not that much need to do that on Japan flights.

Quoting Andaman (Reply 24):
Perhaps SK and AY should merge, after all... AY would handle the the Euro service and SK the long hauls, and everybody would be so much happier

Oh please, no..  Silly While I agree that AY's long-haul product isn't top-notch (especially compared to some Asian airlines) we don't need SK and it's problems to the efficient operation that AY's long-haul business is now. I believe AY will develop their product to match better against other airlines, tough I'm a little surprised they haven't done a lot yet. But even now, the product isn't bad.
One of the best places in the world: McDonald's in T2 at FRA.
 
BarfBag
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Tue Nov 06, 2007 2:45 am

Very nice trip report! As for New Delhi Airport being small, that's true - the current terminals date back to the early 1980s. However, a new integrated terminal (T3) is under construction as pasrt of a $2.2 billion modernization, to be opened in mid 2010. It will be capable of handling 35 million passengers, over twice the capacity of the airport at present. Two additional phases will follow with the demolition and replacement of the existing facilities, each of 35M capacity, for a combined 105 million annual capacity in about a decade. This website of the contractor has more details:

http://www.newdelhiairport.in/delhi-...ia/delhi-airport-photo-library.asp
 
EMA747
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Tue Nov 06, 2007 10:44 am

I very much enjoyed reading this trip report so thanks for writing it. India looks like a really fascinating place to visite and it is my wish to one day go there myself.
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ba319-131
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Tue Nov 06, 2007 5:03 pm

Great report, many thanks for putting it together, much appreciated Smile

I've had about 6 or so AY MD-11 flights, really nice to fly on these classic birds, hope I get the chance again before they leave the fleet....

Regards

Mark
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Thu Nov 08, 2007 3:01 pm

I really enjoyed reading.

What about the infamous "Delhi belly" ??

I'm interested in going to India soon and I wonder what kind of stomach problems you may have had.

I have already had Hep A, Hep B, Typhoid and polio , MMR, and Tetanus vaccinations recently

Did you get any other vaccinations to go to India?

How safe is the bottled water and food situation?

Thank you

SB
 
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids

Thu Nov 08, 2007 4:45 pm

Thanks EFHK for a great report! It is funny, as I did very similar trip with my mother. It was 25th birthday present from her to me, and we spent 5 days in Delhi and Agra. We flew in Business, which was nice, the a/c was the one with DVD-players as IFE, OH-LGE? Your report brings many memories to my mind of this incredible country! Thanks a lot! About the procedures at the airport, exactly the same happened to us!  Smile Most probably for me this flight was the last with MD11, and I felt sad. But then again looking forward to my first AY long haul Airbus flight! This is still to happen.

Quoting Sh0rtybr0wn (Reply 29):

Indeed one has to be careful with the hygiene. We carried an anti-bacterial gel with us. We did drink bottled still water, but we would buy it only from the hotel, as apparently it can be dangerous to buy it else where. Some people only drink sparkle water, I heard. We would only eat in well established restaurants, it would have been lovely to try the little local restaurants, but we didn't have the courage. We did not get any other vaccinations than those you mention.

With regards, okAY
 
BarfBag
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids

Thu Nov 08, 2007 8:14 pm

One can avoid stomach illnesses with simple precautions.
* Drink bottled water. It isn't absolutely necessary that you get it from a hotel, just that it be obtained from a good establishment, and that it be a good brand (e.g. Bisleri); Coca Cola and Pepsi have their own brands of bottled water, which are a safe bet.
* Give your stomach time to acclimatise - a few days at least. Indian food is different, and it helps if you already have experience with it. Don't overdo spicy or greasy food, and stick to good brick and mortar establishments. It's not much trouble to get hold of western food in any medium sized town. For what it's worth, even a local like me can get the runs (and I have) if I become adventurous while traveling around the country.

I wasn't aware of the need for any comprehensive vaccination requirement. I know US-based colleagues who've visited India on business trips without any special shots, without a problem. They never fell ill when they followed the above suggestions, and their biggest part of culture shock was the traffic.
 
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Thu Nov 08, 2007 10:20 pm

Awesome trip report mate... just like the rest of them... I loved it. Very discriptive and the pictures were great. The security process in India seems crazy!!! But let's not forget that a few incidents took place with Indian Airlines and Indian airports. The threat is very much real.

The photos of the forts were absolutely amazing. I can't wait to go there one day...


Moi moi

Vio
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EFHK
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RE: Finnair MD-11 HEL-DEL-HEL (yes, With Pics/vids)

Fri Nov 09, 2007 4:40 pm

Thanks for all comments!  Smile

Quoting BarfBag (Reply 26):
However, a new integrated terminal (T3) is under construction as pasrt of a $2.2 billion modernization, to be opened in mid 2010.

That's good, already a big part of the current terminal seemed to be under renovation.

Quoting Sh0rtybr0wn (Reply 29):
What about the infamous "Delhi belly" ??

Luckily, I didn't have virtually any problems, and my little brothers had only minor problems.

Quoting Sh0rtybr0wn (Reply 29):
Did you get any other vaccinations to go to India?

I'm not aware that we would have had any vaccination requirements, only one I got was a reinforcement of polio vaccination before the trip. However, Finland has a many vaccination requirements by default as a part of national health care so we might have already had some vaccinations that are needed in India, but I don't know if vaccination programs in the U.S. are as large.

Quoting Sh0rtybr0wn (Reply 29):
How safe is the bottled water and food situation?

We only drank bottled water (bought from various sources ranging from street shops to hotel lobbies and restaurants) and we tried to avoid some foods that were mentioned to be potentially harmful in our travel guide, but it was sometimes difficult.

Quoting OkAY (Reply 30):
the a/c was the one with DVD-players as IFE, OH-LGE?

I think OH-LGE, -LGF and -LGG have dvd players or something. Not sure. Most probably -LGG has them.

Quoting OkAY (Reply 30):
We carried an anti-bacterial gel with us.

We too.

Quoting BarfBag (Reply 31):
their biggest part of culture shock was the traffic

That's a quite good bet.  Wink

Quoting Vio (Reply 32):
The threat is very much real.

Moi, I guess that's unfortunately true. Security wasn't that strict even at JFK two months after 9/11.
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