This is my third trip report about a trip to Riga I did on April 19th-20th.
The story behind the trip is that me and my mom had decided to make a small trip during my break from school over Easter. Although, we didn't know where to head. Sooner or later, we decided on a day trip to Riga. FR and BT operates this route. As we have trouble reaching Skavsta (NYO) from where my parents live, our choice was airBaltic from ARN. We didn't find any good deals for a day trip though, so we decided on a 24h trip with a night spent in Riga. Both flights were scheduled on Dash 8's.
I found a cheap hotel by browsing Hotels.com for abit, and we decided on 4-star Avalon Hotel with dinner and breakfast included, for only 64€.
We arrived at ARN rather early, about two hours before our departure. We had checked in online the day before and printed our boarding passes, so we just had to drop our bag at the bagdrop. This was easily done after a short 2-min queue. Since we booked our tickets through the SAS website, who codeshares with BT on the route, we had one bag each included, despite it usually costing extra on BT flights.
After we got rid of our bag, we went to one of the two security at ARN terminal 5, we decided on the one in the old part of T5, as we weren't really in the mood for shopping (the other security checkpoint dumps you right into the duty-free shop).
The security queue was short and we were through in no time.
The older part of T5.
Austrian logo jet.
When we were through we decided to grab some brunch. I decided on a hot cheese and ham panini, and my mother on a cheese and ham sandwich.
After we had finished our sandwiches we still had some waiting to do, so we sat at our gate, doing some reading and such.
Both heading to New York.
Our gate was 3B, 3A is a normal Jetway gate, but 3B is right next to it, but it leads you downstairs to the tarmac instead. It's used for the planes to low for the jetways, such as the Dash 8's.
Later, the aircraft arrived. Today's ride is YL-BAH, my first BT flight, and my first flight on a Dash-8.
I think they were having some trainees today:
Then boarding were called and we board the aircraft.
The cabin crew today was a young female and a youngish male.
We were seated at 21 C and D. The last row. There are no seats on the other side of the aisle here, so these seats offer abit more privacy than the ordinary seats on this aircraft.
The load was light, alot of open seats. Maybe 50%.
The seat has a decent comfort level. Leg room is OK but not more.
We take off from runway 19L a few mins after scheduled departure.
The suburb Märsta.
The weather was great today with lots of sunshine and few clouds, so great views followed over the Stockholm archipelago. As my family has a small house in the northern archipelago, we moved over to the left side of the aircraft soon after takeoff, so see if we could spot the peninsula which our house is located on. After we located it we moved back to the right side again.
The flight went on smoothly over the Baltic sea. We didn't bother buying anything from the BOB cart.
Gotska Sandön, north of Gotland.
Sooner or later we reached land again, here's the town of Ventspils.
Later on we reached the Gulf of Riga, and our descent begun.
It was very windy and we were shaken quite alot before landing. I actually felt a little sick!
Getting closer to the ground.
Despite the winds we managed to land safely on runway 36.
I spotted a few Russian planes during taxi.
We parked at a remote stand, and we were shuttled to the terminal in a bus. One bus was enough due to the light load.
One last look at YL-BAH. Or, so i thought.
We went to the baggage belt. Our bag was the third on the belt, so we didn't have to wait for long. It only took us about 10 mins from stepping out of the aircraft to entering Latvia. Not bad, for a bus transfer and all.
We decided to take bus 22 to get into Riga, since we had read it would have a stop right outside our hotel.
At 0.70 LVL per person, about 1 EUR, it was a really cheap and easy way to get into town.
The hotel was really nice. Modern and fresh, we liked it. We were very pleased with the hotel.
Some photos i took of the hotel:
Riga is a beautiful town, the old town reminded alot of my hometown, Stockholm.
Riga is definentley worth a visit! To anyone visiting, i would recommend a bus tour, that's what we did, and it was a good way of seeing Riga.
Some photos i took during the bus tour:
Riga's new library:
After 24 hours in Riga it was time to head back to RIX. Once again, we took the nr. 22 bus.
We arrived at the airport after 25 mins or so, and we checked in and dropped our bag at the lime-colored bagdrop desk. Since we still had a couple of hours until departure, we decided to eat at a restaurant called Lido, i decided on some chicken with fries. It was a cozy little restaurant with lots of options, and best of all: a great view of the apron.
After our lunch, we headed through the deserted security check, and went to our gate. A real gate this time, not a remote stand. Still an hour before boarding, so i explored the airport abit. Not so much to explore, but the newer parts of the terminal is actually really nice. Cozy but functional.
Sooner or later, our aircraft arrived at the gate. To my disappointment, i noticed it was YL-BAH once again.
After the arriving passengers disembarked, we were soon told to board. Boarding was same as on Arlanda, down the stairs in the Jetway out on the tarmac.
This time, we had decided on seat 20 A and B. The row furthest back on the left side. Load was abit better this time at maybe 65%.
Legroom was the same.
We taxied to the runway and made a quick takeoff.
Bad overview of RIX:
It's not as windy as when we landed yesterday.
The weather was very sunny today aswell, but with more clouds over the Baltic ocean, and rather cloudy over Sweden aswell.
This time, we used the last of our LVL on the BOB-service. We bought a bottle of water and a Pringles can.
Landing at ARN was at runway 26 on time.
A BA-Cityflyer E170, I'll be flying one of those in September.
We quickly taxied to gate 4, the mirrored gate of the one we left the day before.
A second last look at YL-BAH!
We got our bag rather quickly here aswell, and then we were back in Sweden!
The trip was really fun and enjoyable. I must say that i like airBaltic, they offer good trips from A to B. Not many frills but they are not expensive. Reminded me alot about SAS, not so weird though, since they used to be the owner of 50%.
I must also say that i like the Dash 8, it was quieter than i imagined and it was overall quite comfortable.
Thanks all for reading my trip report. Comments are appreciated.