When Air France announced that some flights from Paris to London are going to be operated by the A380 I tought it was a great opportunity to fly on the 'big bus' and book flights at the end of June.
I decided I will spend one night in Paris and one night in London and booked rooms in Sheraton CDG and Reainassance LHR. Then it was time to find flights from Ljubljana to Paris. At the end I decided I will fly LJU-CDG with Adria Airways on the outbound leg and CDG-FRA-LJU with Lufthansa and Adria on my return.
The flight from Ljubljana to Paris was originally planned to be done with a CRJ9, but it got upgraded to a A320, because 25th of June is the independence day in Slovenia and also the end of school so there were a lot of tourists making a weekend trip to Paris.
Crowded check-in area at LJU. I have checked-in online the day before and was able to use the business class check-in counter to drop-off my bag, where the line was a little bit shorter.
Departures and arrivals board. There were two flights with football fans from South Africa arriving this morning. One was JP A319 from Port Elizabeth and the other one was an AEY B767. Our football team, would arrive the next day at 8:20 from Frankfurt. More than 2.000 people waited for them at the airport and 10.000 more in the city center two hours later.
The line for security.
S5-AAA will take me to CDG today. It is the only A320 left in JP fleet.
Beautiful new part of the terminal at LJU. It is very bright and modern.
S5-AAO going to London Gatwick. There were two Adria flights going to LGW that morning, one at 7.25 and one at 7.50. As I said, lots of tourists.
S5-AAR arriving after a looong journey from South Africa (I think they stopped in Congo and Libya), meanwhile S5-AAJ CRJ200 is boarding passengers for its flight to Amsterdam.
Our crew today.
The pilot finishing his pre-flight walk around.
Boarding seems a bit chaotic but it wasn't that bad.
Airbus 320 Adria Airways
Another view of S5-AAR, the second A319 in Adria fleet. It was delivered in May, the first one S5-AAP was delivered in April 2010.
Taxiing to runway 13.
Shortly after takeoff the no-smoking sign went off(?)
The cockpit doors were also opened.
A sandwich was given to all economy passengers, there were no choices just this cheese sandwich. It was not that bad.
My first flight ever was the same one as today – LJU-CDG on Adria A320 (I was around 8 years old so I do not remember the registration
. Back then you used to receive a big tray filled with food. Now it is just a sandwich. But it is better than nothing
This translation is either wrong or I don't get it (Živite=Live)
On approach to CDG.
Parked at T1.
It was another classic Adria flight. They do a good job but their flights are not so cheap. I disembarked and went to the baggage claim area of Terminal 1. Then a quick ride with CDGVAL to terminal 2 and then with RER B to Paris, where I spend the day. I have not been to Paris in more than 8 years so it was nice to see the city again.
View from my hotel room at Sheraton CGD.
Next morning it was time for my first A380 flight. I have checked in online and went to the baggage drop-off area. The queue was not that long and it moved fast so I was finished in no time. I went through passport control without waiting in line and was soon on board the train to gate E61, from where my flight would depart. Security was quick and I was at the gate with plenty of time to spare. I find terminal 2E at CDG a very nice place, modern, bright, huge windows,lot of computers with internet access, Playstation 3, nice toilets,… a very nice place.
And of course the reason for my trip was parked here. Air France Airbus 380-800 F-HPJC.
Did some spotting at the end of the terminal. Air France B744 taxiing.
Another AF 747 has just landed.
Gate area just before boarding started. The whole boarding process was well organized in my opinion, it is not easy to control more than 500 people, who try to board the plane. But AF manage to do it well. There was a separate line for upper deck economy and I joined that queue.
Airbus 380-800 Air France
AF B777-300ER going to LAX.
We left the gate about 15 minutes late and started our taxi to runway 9R. When we arrived to the runway we stopped and waited there for 15 minutes. After that the pilot came on the PA and informed us that we will have to wait here for another 10 minutes because of the ATC. We waited for another 15-20 minutes and the captain came on the PA with another announcement. We have been given ATC clearance, but our brakes were too hot so we would have to wait for another 10 minutes. We finally left CDG at 11:25, by that time we were already supposed to land at LHR.
Nice storage area on the upper deck. There was an announcement made that there were 516 passengers on this flight.
Unfortunately we did not land from the east, so we did not get the great view of London, which I was really looking forward to.
We landed on runway 9R at LHR with a one hour delay. Quick taxi to terminal 4 and our flight was finished. I went to check out terminal 5 after we landed and from there to the Heathrow Reainasannce hotel, where I spent the night.
Aeroflot 767 and a street lamp
Room with a view
Back at terminal 4 I was greeted with this sign at check-in. As my onward connection was not in the system I had to see the check-in supervisor. She then entered details form my flights from CDG to FRA and LJU and my bag was checked all the was through to Ljubljana.
Continental 777 going to IAH.
AF1980 landed on-time today.
Airbus 380-800 Air France
I was not the only one taking pictures
I liked the chat feature. It would be better if the passengers would talk in English
The moving map was obviously hiding somewhere, because the IFE was not able to find it.
Back at CDG.
Our crew wished us a very nice day. It was a nice touch.
I made my way off the plane and back to terminal 1, from where my Lufthansa flight to Frankfurt would depart.
While waiting in the line for security a huge roar was heard from the other side. The world cup football game between England and Germany started at 16:00 and Germany probably scored, since there were multiple Lufthansa flights departing from that area (FRA, MUC, DUS)
When I was finished with the slow security process I went to the other side and found out that Germany has indeed scored.
Our plane arriving from Frankfurt in the background. Watching planes and football at the same time – just amazing
There was an announcement made, first in French and then in German. All the people in the gate area watching the game started applauding. The announcement was then done in English – apparently due to ATC restrictions the flight to Dusseldorf was going to have a 20 minute delay. Nobody seemed to mind that as it meant they will be able to watch the game until the end
Boeing 737-300 Lufthansa
Taxi was quick and we were soon in the air for this 40 minutes flight.
Colorful lineup at FRA T2 (sorry for the bad picture)
Making my way to the B gates. Frankfurt is my favorite airport in Europe and I always like transfers here. This was my third time in Frankfurt this year.
Boarding started a bit late for my last flight today.
CRJ900 Adria Airways
It was S5-AAK today.
This time it was a choice between a cheese or meat sandwich.
My window was dirty so I do not have a lot of good pictures and it was getting dark.
We landed with only a few minutes of delay. Baggage reclaim area:
I had a great time with Air France. The made a good impression and I might considerer flying long-haul with AF in the future, although I normally fly with Star Alliance (because Adria is a member and they have the best connections via MUC,FRA,ZRH and VIE).
Thank you AF for this opportunity to fly the A380 for 80 Euros