Maikel
Topic Author
Posts: 77
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2006 2:33 am

KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Tue Aug 31, 2010 5:46 pm

Why this trip:

First of all welcome to my second trip report, which includes my flight to my summer holiday destination Curaçao! In this trip report I made an overview about my impression on board KLM’s flight KL783 with destination Willemstad, Curaçao located in the Netherlands Antilles. We also had a stopover at the neighbor island Aruba, which was fine with me.

The flight was on the 12th of August and would be operated by a Boeing 747-406, luckily for me because the 747 is my favorite aircraft because of its looks and appearance. I’ve been on almost every Boeing 747-400 of KLM because of my school internships, but this was the first time I was fortunate enough to actually fly on one of these beauties called ‘’The Queen of the Skies’’. Most of the 747’s in KLM’s fleet are now equipped with the new IFE screens, which turned out to be a nice entertainment on this flight with a duration of 11 hours and 5 minutes.

Normally my summer destinations were always in Europe, mostly to the Canary islands because of its long stretched sand beaches. Most of those flights were booked on the Dutch carrier Transavia with their cheap summer offers. This time there was a larger choice to fly from Amsterdam to Curaçao. The airliners included where Arkefly, Martinair and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines directly from Amsterdam. I heard some stories about delays and technical problems from friends about Arkefly and Martinair that both operate the 767 to Curaçao. In this case the choice was quickly made and KLM was also the cheapest of the three. I did had some problems on the return flight, more of that is in the end.

We booked the tickets and house where we stayed in the beginning of April and in the beginning of August I decided to make a trip to SXM with local carrier Inselair. I will make a trip report of that flight to. I was really looking forward to the cozy and relaxed atmosphere of the island.


Before the flight:

As you could have read in my first TR onboard the Air France A380 flight to LHR, I was pleased about the way this flight turned out. Regarding this, my expectations were high because KLM and Air France are very close together. On KLM you are able to select you’re seat 90 days in advance and the online check-in opens 30 hours before the departure of the flight. The KLM webpage is user friendly and the tickets were ready again in PDF format.

Also KLM is implementing a IFE system in their older aircraft that are used on the long haul routes all over the world. All of the full passenger 747’s are equipped with this system and they are now working on the Combi’s and MD11’s.


The Airport:

After a period of working during the summer holidays it was finally time for me to go on vacation to Curaçao, most of my friends went in an earlier period so I was really looking forward to go myself. The day started early around 5am and we were picked up by taxi at 6am to arrive at Schiphol at 7am. There wasn’t a long waiting que at the desk so I got rid of the suitcases before I knew it.

I actually never had any problems with the passport control at Schiphol and also this time the process went very fast. I still had some hours to kill so grabbed some coffee and did some shopping in the terminal. As you all know Schiphol Amsterdam is a very big airport and they are very keen on improving the terminals and buildings, they recently opened the Holland Boulevard where you can see a verity of things out of the Dutch culture.

1.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12003.jpg

2.



The gate for my flight was F07 located at the top of the Fox pier. On this pier most of KLM’s 747-400 and 777-200ER are being handled so there was enough to see.

3.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12002.jpg

4.

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When I reached the gate there already was a long waiting line for the security check. I noticed a woman with a dog in the line?! I never saw that person again on board... I really don’t know how that’s actually possible, because pets are always in the bulk as AVI’s or are there some exceptions?

The Flight, Seat, Entertainment, Cabins and Crew:



The boarding process started on time, first Business Class passengers and Skyteam members and last but not least the Economy Class passengers. There were a lot of Business Class passengers, think the load combined with Economy Passengers was 100%, in the cabin all the seats where occupied. Aircraft for today’s flight was the Boeing 747-406, PH-BFG a 20 year old aircraft that made its first flight on March 1990 and joined KLM in April 1990.

At the F pier at Schiphol they use 2 gates for 1 flight. One gate goes over the wing, I was seated in row 42 so I could use that gate. At the door I was greeted by two stewardesses wearing the new KLM uniforms, looked very smart to me. I asked if I could make a visit to the flight deck but they reclined, because of security reasons.

5.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12006.jpg

No problem, that are the rules of todays aviation, of to my seat then. My seat was 42A on the left side of the plane right behind the wing. Seat was as I said equipped with the IFE system and there was a blanked an a pillow located on the seat.

6.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12007.jpg

Legroom was decent, KLM uses a 3-4-3 configuration in Economy with 337 seats, 36 Economy Comfort Class seats and 42 World Business Class seats.

7.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12009.jpg

Our routing for today was displayed during our push-back, 4,952nm of fun.

8.

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9.

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Taxiing to runway 24, with an Air Transat Airbus A310 in the background.

10.

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11.

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It was not that busy at the runway so we were first in line to blast down the runway, and what a take-off run it was!

12.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12034.jpg

After smooth a left turn we headed for London to continue our way to the Atlantic Ocean where we caught a cloud layer that stayed with us for almost the whole flight.

13.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12039.jpg

14.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12043.jpg

Sadly enough there were a lot of clouds above the UK so I didn’t see any land, but you have to love that massive wing and the blue skies!

15.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12047.jpg

16.

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Headphones were distributed, the sounds was good but there was a sound difference between the left and right side. And the Holland Herald, cool front.

17.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12053.jpg

Again some information, hot towel service started 1:15 hrs in the flight.

18.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12055.jpg

First drink service was 1:45 hrs in the flight with a little snack, I had nothing to complain during the flight there was plenty of catering on board.

19.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12056.jpg

20.

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Almost there…

21.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12061.jpg

Exploring the IFE system.

22.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12059.jpg

The main screen.

23.

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The main control with the game controls and telephone.

24.

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25.

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Classic!

26.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12062.jpg

When you pause a movie you can see the remaining time of the program and remaining flying time.

27.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12065.jpg

Above Ireland they served dinner my choice was the Pasta shells with spinach sauce with a salad and bread, as desert there was vanilla pudding with raspberry’s.

28.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12066.jpg

29.

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For an Economy meal it was good to eat but nothing special.

30.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12072.jpg

2 hours later Strawberry ice-cream and water.

31.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12088.jpg

We reached our final flight level, this is my first flight on a Boeing 747 and on cruise it was a very stabile aircraft sometimes it was a little turbulent but nothing shocking.

32.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12091.jpg

1:40 hours before landing there was meal consisting of a Pizza snack, apple crumble cake (was really nice), salad and fresh fruits.

33.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12095.jpg

34.

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The sun is catching us.

35.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12097.jpg

Almost crossing Puerto Rico and the city of San Juan, hoping for some clear skies. Our arrival point is also on the map.

36.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12100.jpg

37.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12101.jpg

Trough a gap in the clouds I could see the main airport of San Juan called Luis Munoz Marin.

38.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12104.jpg

A huge CB.

39.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12108.jpg

Landing runway was 11 as we were coming from the North it was a sharp right turn to fly parallel to the runway and then a good left turn the line up with the runway. Really like the Caribbean water in this picture.

40.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12115.jpg

Finals runway 11.

41.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12121.jpg

Close-up of the winglet with some resorts in the background.

42.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12125.jpg

And a very soft touch down.

43.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12133.jpg

44.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12136.jpg

Lucky me the Continental's 75th anniversary retrojet popped up next to me.

45.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12160.jpg

The captain announced that the ground time at Aruba was 45 minutes, so I was able to stretch my legs a little. He also said that the aircraft was refueling so the seatbelts must be lose. The passengers for Aruba disembarked the plane and some new passengers for Curaçao joined again the plane was fully loaded and before I knew it the push began and we were off for a really short flight to Curaçao.

46.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12155.jpg

Taxi again to runway 11 for a short but powerful take-off roll, now I experienced both heavy and light take-off runs.

47.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12161.jpg

The runway.

48.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12164.jpg

And rotate in front of the terminal building!

49.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12165.jpg

50.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12170.jpg

51.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12173.jpg

It was a straight in approach for runway 11 at Hato Airport.

52.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12177.jpg

And again a very smooth touchdown.

53.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12183.jpg

Some private jets during taxi to our gate.

54.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12192.jpg

The control tower.

55.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12194.jpg

A Fokker 100 next to us belonging to Dutch Antilles Express.

56.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12197.jpg

When we were at the gate I asked again if it was able to make a photo of the flight deck, it was fine and I went upstairs. On my way to the cockpit I came by the pilots think they were in a rush to grab a cold beer, so the upper deck was mine. The cockpit was still open for me to make a photo to.

The rushing crew.

57.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12200.jpg

The cockpit.

58.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12186.jpg

Then it was time to leave this beauty behind me, and enjoy my holiday on the island.

59.

http://i835.photobucket.com/albums/zz277/Maikelheijden4/2010-08-12201.jpg


Impression:

As this was my first flight on KLM so I can’t really compare it to my other experiences, but I really enjoyed this Long Haul product. It was also my first long haul so that’s new to. I flew the AF A380 to LHR and I think these airliners fit well together. The 747 will always be my favorite aircraft and it’s a pity KLM is thinking of retiring these wonderful aircraft. The screens are a nice extra to and I’m glad KLM is still upgrading their older aircraft. I hope to fly on one of these beauties again!

On the return flight we had a problem with the aircraft. It was on the 26th of August when I should have flown back to Amsterdam. The aircraft was on the same rotation again AMS-AUA-CUR-AMS. When I arrived at the gate there was nothing special. About 30 minutes after boarding should have started an announcement came. ‘’Ladies and Gentlemen, there is a problem with the aircraft cargo door. During the offloading on Aruba a truck drove into to door and needs repairs because it’s unsafe to fly back to Amsterdam. I will inform you as soon as possible, you can get a voucher for a drink and a snack at the boarding desk.’’ Ok so the aircraft was able to fly from Aruba to Curacao because it’s a low altitude flight, on the Willemstad – Amsterdam leg they will have a pressure problem.

There was a lot of staff running at the check-in desk so there was seriously something wrong. Then the announcement came: ‘’Ladies and Gentlemen our apologies for the long waiting, the staff is not able the repair the aircraft at this moment. We are flying in mechanics from Amsterdam so the suitcases are being offloaded and you will be driven to a hotel, all will be paid by KLM.’’ That was kind of a bummer but I prefer to fly a safe plane than one with a malfunction. I was transported to the Renaissance Curacao Resort & Casino ****, it was a great hotel and there was a infinity pool & beach.

The next day (27th of August) I came to the lobby of the hotel and saw that the departure was again suspended a day, so I was now going to fly back on the 28th of August to arrive on the 29th that’s 2 days of delay. The next day, on check out it was well arranged we handed over the key and had no problem with the staff what so ever.

When I arrived at the airport on the 29th I was guided to the KLM customer desk and got a voucher of 600eu (ticket cost for the AMS-CUR-AMS flight) and 2000 Flying Blue Miles. I just want to say KLM handled everything very professional and all the passengers were happy to go home again.

As I said I also visited SXM during my stay on Curaçao, I will make a trip report of the CUR-SXM leg onboard Inselair. Currently I’m in the middle of a KLM training program for Load Control so I don’t have that much time but I will work on it.

Thank you for reading my second full trip report and I hope you enjoyed it much as I did.

Feedback is always welcome.
 
DunaA320
Posts: 526
Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2009 7:48 pm

RE: KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Tue Aug 31, 2010 11:41 pm

Hi Maikel

Really good report and Curacao looks like a nice place to visit for your holiday.

The food on your flight looked good.

Quoting Maikel (Thread starter):
When I arrived at the airport on the 29th I was guided to the KLM customer desk and got a voucher of 600eu (ticket cost for the AMS-CUR-AMS flight) and 2000 Flying Blue Miles. I just want to say KLM handled everything very professional and all the passengers were happy to go home again.

Thats real good of KL! Glad you got home in the end!

Thanks for sharing and looking forward to your report on the flight to SXM!

Matt
 
Flightsimboy
Posts: 1408
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2005 12:49 pm

RE: KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Wed Sep 01, 2010 1:29 am

Quoting Maikel (Thread starter):
I’ve been on almost every Boeing 747-400 of KLM because of my school internships, but this was the first time I was fortunate enough to actually fly on one of these beauties called ‘’The Queen of the Skies’’.
Quoting Maikel (Thread starter):
As this was my first flight on KLM so I can’t really compare it to my other experiences, but I really enjoyed this Long Haul product.
Quoting Maikel (Thread starter):
Currently I’m in the middle of a KLM training program for Load Control so I don’t have that much time but I will work on it.

Was almost confused with the opening sentence as you mentioned you've been all their 744s, but flying for the first time on the KLM 744...huh!! Then at the end you explained you work on KLM jumbos...Wow, you must have been so excited to be flying on one, finally!! The KLM 747-400 has got to be one of the nicest 744s around, and truly when they are gone they will be missed. I hope KLM continues to fly them into YYZ for a while.

Looks like you got some fairly decent meals on board. I love those KLM presentation boxes.

Quoting Maikel (Thread starter):

After smooth a left turn we headed for London to continue our way to the Atlantic Ocean where we caught a cloud layer that stayed with us for almost the whole flight.
Quoting Maikel (Thread starter):
Sadly enough there were a lot of clouds above the UK so I didn’t see any land, but you have to love that massive wing and the blue skies!

Yes nothing much to see while over the Atlantic, but with that gorgeous wingtip with the KLM logo on it, It truly makes a great photo against the backdrop of clouds.

That flight from AUA to CUR has got to be the shortest flight on a 744. The map said 106 kms!!

Thanks for sharing. Any trip report on a KLM 744 is welcome
 
767747
Posts: 2126
Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2005 10:08 am

RE: KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Wed Sep 01, 2010 1:30 am

Good report! Looks like you had a nice flight down to Curacao! Great views from your flight .. Interesting meal it looks like. I've read mixed reports about the food served in Y on KLM .. Some say the meals are really good, others say its not that great and since there are very little portions you are left hungry!

Looking forward to the return flight!

767747
I love to fly!
 
Maikel
Topic Author
Posts: 77
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2006 2:33 am

RE: KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Wed Sep 01, 2010 4:55 am

@flightsimboy: I used to work at the ground handeling at KLM so i've been on much of their aircrafts.
Now i'm going to the Operational Control Center for Load Controller.

@767747: I don't think i'm going to make a TR of the return flight because it was overnight and didn't make that much photos.
I do have some sunrise shots maybe I can post them.
 
User avatar
CrimsonNL
Posts: 1801
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2007 6:34 pm

RE: KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Wed Sep 01, 2010 5:23 am

Hi Maikel, nice report! The interior looks miles ahead of the one I'm used to when thinking of KL's 747s. Always a pleasure to fly on the 747 isn't it?

Regards, and good luck at the OCC,

Martijn
Always comparing your flown types list with mine
 
globalflyer
Posts: 724
Joined: Tue Dec 20, 2005 4:15 am

RE: KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Wed Sep 01, 2010 3:58 pm

Great report and photos. Really liked that Airliners magazine!  
Landing on every Continent almost on an annual basis!
 
PlaneHunter
Posts: 6512
Joined: Tue Mar 14, 2006 3:17 am

RE: KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Wed Sep 01, 2010 6:53 pm

Hi Maikel,

very interesting report, good to see the refurbished 747 interior.

Quoting Maikel (Thread starter):
Above Ireland they served dinner my choice was the Pasta shells with spinach sauce with a salad and bread, as desert there was vanilla pudding with raspberry’s.

Well, you didn't show us the main course, but the rest of the meal looks quite good. However, the presentation is very poor. Air France's trays look so much better - and the portions seems to be larger, too.

Quoting Maikel (Thread starter):
As I said I also visited SXM during my stay on Curaçao, I will make a trip report of the CUR-SXM leg onboard Inselair.

That sounds very interesting!


PH
Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
 
Maikel
Topic Author
Posts: 77
Joined: Thu Nov 09, 2006 2:33 am

RE: KL783 AMS-AUA-CUR B744 12th Of August

Wed Sep 01, 2010 7:34 pm

@Globalflyer: My favorite megazine.

@PH: Yes stupid me I forgot to make a picture of that.... (Hoped that no one would notice it)

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