First trip of 2009: Venice (80 pics)
This would be my first trip of the year, as the title suggests it, but would also be my first flight ever during January. All the months were covered with flights, but not January. I booked the trip since November 2008, paying around 50 euro for both me and my girlfriend, quite a bargain.
As the trip got closer and closer, I constantly checked the same flights I would also take, to see if there are delays or even cancelations. A week before the trip there was a lot of fog in the Venice area so many flights to Treviso, if not all, were cancelled or rerouted. I knew that January wasn’t the best month of the year to travel to this area, which is often foggy, but I was hoping for the best.
On Friday, January 23, a day before my flight, fog also caused many flights bound for Treviso to be cancelled or rerouted, some to Venice Marco Polo and some all the way to Trieste. I even considered not flying at all, than to land maybe in Trieste and arrive in Venice very late in the evening.
The next day I checked dozens of times the webcams on the Internet, from and around Venice, to see if there’s fog, and also the airport flights schedule. Until 11 AM
, when we left to the airport, everything seemed to be normal. We arrived at the airport about 1:15 PM
, so I had time to check a couple of times the webcams and the airport flights in the Venice area, on my mobile phone. We both finally agreed that we should go for it.
BBU (Bucharest Aurel Vlaicu / Baneasa) - TSF (Treviso)
24 January 2009, Saturday
Wizz Air - W60757
Airbus A320-200 / HA-LPJ
(first flight: 13 Apr 2007)
Scheduled: 2:00 PM
- 3:05 PM
Actual: 1:58 PM
- 2:47 PM
Load factor: 95 %
Looking at the flights in the Bucharest Aurel Vlaicu / Baneasa Airport, I noticed that all the flights from that morning landed at the bigger and more equipped airport, Henri Coanda / Otopeni. That’s also common, it happened to me before, on a trip to / from Vienna, on SkyEurope.
So actually the aircraft, which would take us to Treviso would be the first flight of the day to land at this airport. The aircraft arrived ahead of time, from London Luton, so we just waited patiently for boarding in the departures hall.
Boarding began as planned, we were taken to the aircraft by bus and boarded the aircraft through the rear door.
We chose row 28, on the left side. We usually choose to fly on the right side, when flying west, because of the sun. This time we said to try something else.
Germanwings / A319 - it was coming from Stuttgart
Taking off on runway 07
A brand new neighbourhood is being built, on a place which not so long ago was just plain field. I wonder what’s the future of these projects, considering the current economic situation.
Heading east for a while
Then we turned west, flying not far from Bucharest Henri Coanda / Otopeni Airport. The poor lighting conditions, along with the fog, didn’t helped me at all when trying to take pictures.
The sun light was coming almost straight at us, so we regretted that we chose to sit on the left side.
The in-flight service came, I chose only a bottle of water and snacks. The napkin was nice, it seems the Wizz Air started again to use the napkins with the logo. Last time I saw one was in 2007.
Cloudy view, on the entire flight
Approaching Treviso, we made a 180 degree turn, to land from the west.
The Alps were visible, through the clouds
A soccer field
Landing on runway 07
Exiting the runway
The terminal building
We deboarded quickly and got to the terminal on foot
Ryanair / B737-800 - from London Stansted
The usual Ryanair stairs
We passed immigration and then we were outside the building in no time. We bought a bus ticket to Venice and than waited inside for almost half an hour before leaving.
View of the terminal from the bus
After an hour of winding around on many countryside roads, at very slow speed, we reached Venice. It would be the second visit to Venice, the first one being in 2002. Actually, it would be my 4th visit, if I count also the Venetian Casino visits, in Las Vegas... But I guess those don’t count.
The road into Venice, along with the railroad
We bought a ticket on the Vaporetto, which would take us over the Canal Grande, to San Marco Square.
The new bridge in Venice, designed by Calatrava
The bridge next to the train station (Ponte degli Scalzi)
Off-season, so many gondolas rested ashore
Santa Maria della Salute
San Giorgio Maggiore
Campanile and Palazzo Ducale
By the time we reached San Marco Square, it was already night.
Basilica di San Marco
In the square, we played with the pigeons, which were all very friendly, some of them too friendly.
A pigeon deploying speed brakes, on final approach to... my girlfriend.
San Marco Square, once more.
Bridge of Sighs (Ponte dei Sospiri), undergoing some repairs
San Giorgio Maggiore, 5 second exposure
Many small shops in the labyrinth of streets
Night view from the bridge
Quiet street (or canal)
Around 10 PM
, we took the bus to Marco Polo Airport. We never planned on booking a hotel room in the first place, given the early check in time. We initially planned to walk all night through the streets of Venice and go at the airport at 5 AM
, but the cold and humid air, together with the perspective of a rainy night (it rained that evening for 10 minutes), changed our mind quickly, so spending the night in the airport was a much better thing to do.
After all, it wasn’t bad at all. The seats weren’t ideal but weren’t the worst either, and at least it was warm and quiet in the terminal.
VCE (Venezia Marco Polo) - BBU (Bucharest Aurel Vlaicu / Baneasa)
25 January 2009, Sunday
MyAir - 8I2602
Airbus A320-200 / I-LINB
(first flight: 14 Sep 1992)
Scheduled: 7:05 AM
- 9:55 AM
Actual: 7:15 AM
- 9:44 AM
Load factor: 80 %
The departures hall
Our flight was luckily on time
After the security check, we walked inside the nice terminal, which had a wooden floor, like in Copenhagen Kastrup Airport.
KLM / Fokker 100
After buying some chocolate gifts, we went to our gate.
Boarding began soon, but the queue line was formed a few minutes before. Even though MyAir assigns seats at check in for a while now, people still prefer to wait and stand in the queue before boarding, instead of sitting on the nearby seats. Always a mystery to me...
We were taken by bus to our parked aircraft, which turned out to be the MyAir / VW
Making our way towards runway 04R. Venice was barely visible somewhere on the horizon.
Taking off, it was still dark outside
After take off, we banked right over the lagoon
Passing right over the Lido di Jesolo resort
Clear sky above the clouds
We fell asleep after that, but there wasn’t anything to do anyway, with no view outside.
Later the in-flight service came and I asked if they still sell plane models. Last time I flew with them, in 2007, I bought an A320. Unfortunately MyAir doesn’t anymore, I would have liked to buy two A320 for two buddies and one CRJ-900 for me.
Before landing in Bucharest, the Carpathian Mountains were visible, at a distance of 150-200 km.
Final approach into a foggy landscape
Landing on runway 07
We went all the way, turning at the end. The taxiway is being repaired, so you have to cross the whole length of the runway to get to the apron.
Exiting the runway
Parking very close to the terminal
While deboarding, this Mistral Air / B737-300 went by. It was a flight operated for MyAir, coming from Bergamo.
logo on the tail
Leaving the aircraft behind, as we entered the terminal.
We then passed immigration, no luggage to wait for, so we were on our way home right away. We were a bit tired, but the whole experience turned out to be a very nice one. Really successful week-end.
What I miss the most are the pigeons, so I plan on going back to Venice during summer, but we’ll see.
Next trip of 2009 would be to Rome and Bergamo, done in one day, next week-end. The trip report including 3 flights would follow as soon as possible.
Please feel free to post your questions or comments.