signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 11:07 am

To BER or not to BER, that is the question

First, it must be noted that my compact camera broke the week before this, whilst on holiday in Corfu, so all photos are taken with my phone camera.

Towards the end of 2011, it became apparent that the new airport in Berlin Brandenburg was nearing completion, and it was suggested to hold an A.Net meeting on the opening day of operations. After some negociations with my wife, it was agreed that I would attend my first A.net meeting, as a day trip on the Sunday. Now with 2 small children, cash can be tight, so I decided to use some Avios one way, and some Nectar points on an Easyjet flight the other way. Parking at Luton is much cheaper than near Heathrow, and closer to home for the early start, so I booked the "inaugural" Luton - Brandenburg on Easyjet for £55 (minus some points value), and a return on BA to Heathrow. There was no availabilty on the afternoon flight in Traveller, so was forced to sit in the front, for 9000 Avios miles and £17 for the taxes.

Then just a few weeks before the big day, it was announced that the new airport would not be operating at all! Both airlines reverted to their original Berlin locations, so I would arrive at Schoenefeld, and depart from Tegel.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-XeP97IFLIXU/T8xtZEckmII/AAAAAAAAA1k/gNFIckTnj6Y/s1600/gcmapBerlin.gif

Thanks to www.gcmap.com for the map

The day of departure arrived, and I set my alarm for 3am (yawn). I spent a few too many minutes trying to open my eyes and finally put my car into gear at 3.30 for the drive to Luton. I stopped at a 24 hour McDo near Cambridge just before 5am hoping for a greasy breakfast, but they were still selling the "daytime" menu - the guy joked that I was an "early riser" rather than a "late reveller", to which I agreed, and bought only a cup of tea. I pulled into the car park at Luton Airport Parkway station, which only charges £2 per day on weekends, a bit more in the week (probably the cheapest parking near the airport) and walked to the shuttle bus stop. The bus cost is £1.50 single, £2.50 return.

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-nrSnD7Zfu7Q/T8xupcjIjQI/AAAAAAAAA1s/qpuCaJv6hIk/s1600/IMAG0956.jpg

Luton Airport station shuttle bus

Some of the shuttle busses have been modified to look a bit like a tram, with covered wheels. You're not fooling anyone, they are still busses.

Traffic was very heavy, even at 5.50, on the airport approach road, but we eventually arrived. I had checked in online, so went straight to security. The queue was massive, though moving quite quickly its shear size meant it took some time. Periodically someone with a microphone would call out flights about to depart, and passengers on those flights could bypass the main queue. As luck would have it, Berlin passengers were called forward just as I reached the front. Security was quick, though I also had to take my Kindle out of my bag for the first time, like a laptop. I then foudn a departure screen, and headed to Gate 11.

03/06/2012
U22147
LTN-SXF
G-EZDR

The queue was already building, and I joined, about 3/4 of the way back in the end.



On the way to the gate



Queuing at the gate

It turned out that Gate 11 was a bus gate, and that a bus full of passengers had already boarded, so I wasn't holding much hope for a good seat. I needn't have worried! A couple had taken an aisle and middle seat near the back, so I managed to get the window next to them. The flight looked like it was full.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gMsY9m0q5OU/T8xuxWraPWI/AAAAAAAAA2E/A_U69ZKGFMs/s1600/IMAG0959.jpg

Biz jet apron

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-1Xe4EhKMKmE/T8xuzUtzeBI/AAAAAAAAA2M/9EpL6CQblWw/s1600/IMAG0960.jpg

Reg confirmation

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-sHXWFDqXPEk/T8xu1cknE-I/AAAAAAAAA2U/dk-VKIFKzCk/s1600/IMAG0962.jpg

Boarding

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ZHeduw3A1Dk/T8xu2qM3NhI/AAAAAAAAA2c/UUxHZcbEWns/s1600/IMAG0963.jpg

Tail on boarding



Still raining, view from my seat

The engines started up after the doors were closed, we pushed back and joined the queue for the runway. There was quite a long wait, but eventually we took off, and burst through the murk to the clear blue skies above the weather.

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-DxyDtJheYjc/T8xu5M3Y3EI/AAAAAAAAA2k/vEr8qS10DZQ/s1600/IMAG0964.jpg

Obligatory legroom shot

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-OeD3CSZ-aa8/T8xu9WVNDZI/AAAAAAAAA20/SDGGJLTOrho/s1600/IMAG0967.jpg

Out of the window

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-6AITXBVm29Y/T8xu_YWkT7I/AAAAAAAAA28/dGnqHO_IpaI/s1600/IMAG0968.jpg

View forward

Soon the service started. I hadn't eaten yet that day so I decided to have the Muffin deal, which means a £1 discount off a muffin and hot drink, yet the cost is still more than a McDo cooked breakfast  http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-ZeewvkixEkk/T8xvA7hWziI/AAAAAAAAA3E/hF283W-jSnQ/s1600/IMAG0969.jpg

Muffin and Starbucks tea

For those interested, the muffin was average, a little dry and crumbly but not overly so.

Soon enough it was time to descend. We passed over a lot of lakes, and forested areas, that looked quite pretty. We landed with a bump so slight I could barely feel it, until we started braking. The taxi to stand was quite long, and we came to rest beside a Norwegian neighbour.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-V2Z29tu-4FU/T8xvCT0m3JI/AAAAAAAAA3M/lV3bkBstSTk/s1600/IMAG0970.jpg

Norwegian neighbour

I had arranged to meet user Akhmad at the arrivals, as he was staying in the Albergo hotel still, after many others had changed hotels for a city centre one. He was instantly recognisable from his photos, and we headed together to the station after buying a ticket to Tegel. The original (well, plan B) had been to head for a picnic at the Tempelhof park, but with bad weather forecast, it was decided to go straight to Tegel. We took a Regionalbahn to Hauptbahnhof, then the TXL bus on to the airport.



Hauptbahnhof

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-PgRiZvWZhQI/T8xvH3ni4sI/AAAAAAAAA3c/0lZqnW5qums/s1600/IMAG0972.jpg

Hauptnahhof again

Plenty of people took photos at the meet, so I will try some that may or may not be repeated. As this was my first meeting, I was pleased to be made welcome into the group. I could not have hoped for a nicer group of people to spend a few hours with, and I hope I can make another meet before too long!

We met at the famous Ess-Bahn currywurst stand, before moving up to the Besucherterrasse - Viewing Deck. After a while, it was beer o'clock, so we found a cafe / bar inside the terminal for a cold one, before people made their exits.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-dtNGlPdh0MI/T8xvKpOZn9I/AAAAAAAAA3k/ujaZVTIoheA/s1600/IMAG0974.jpg

The famous "Ess-Bahn" currywurst stand



The famous currywurst

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-9fp824qa1Ik/T8xvOvPT0-I/AAAAAAAAA30/iy1ZRBd1SzU/s1600/IMAG0976.jpg

Inside the airport hexagon - what should have happened today.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-pb3fvM2d0Lo/T8xvREDge8I/AAAAAAAAA4A/vY2BVWfLFIk/s1600/IMAG0977.jpg

Did someone lose a hat?  http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-IySj3mAHOlk/T8xvVofwhQI/AAAAAAAAA4Q/-wxbASRl1LA/s1600/IMAG0979.jpg

The earlier BA flight to Heathrow

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-HI9sXhBNlxE/T8xvTOgSz4I/AAAAAAAAA4I/XGcA_7BFmas/s1600/IMAG0978.jpg

An AB A330 taking most of the runway to lift off

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-mqyVTMsk3HI/T8xvXvF5cwI/AAAAAAAAA4Y/ntRKdBXunD4/s1600/IMAG0980.jpg

The highlight of the day - Mongolian Airlines 767 from Ulaan Batur

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-bBtGzQWOyzw/T8xvarQUSNI/AAAAAAAAA4g/q192MaEb8KA/s1600/IMAG0981.jpg

Departure board from the bar

03/06/2012
BA985
TXL-LHR
G-EUYM

As I had a Club Europe ticket, naturally I wanted to see the lounge - it would be only my 4th lounge visit. I bade my farewells, and went to the Terraces Lounge. I had my mobile boarding pass, and the attendant scanned the barcode on my phone, and a green light appeared. I found a comfy armchair with the nearest thing to a view the lounge has, as it is landside, and got a cup of tea, a couple of sandwiches and a boiled egg. I have to say the food selection was limited, there were also crisps, a couple of cakes, and small chocolates. The bar area, however, was well stocked. A shame as I'd be driving later and I had my one beer with the guys downstairs.

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-WO8MZ4EY4L8/T8xvdCeLA5I/AAAAAAAAA4o/1QSj8cKAAKQ/s1600/IMAG0982.jpg

Food and view

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-bidU3nQXL58/T8xvfWw7NOI/AAAAAAAAA4w/LOqtozpofVQ/s1600/IMAG0983.jpg

Comfy seats

I needed to increase my caffeine intake thanks to my early start, so took a coke as well (pour your own glass from large bottles in the fridge). Unfortunately there was no bathroom, you had to exit, and go downstairs to the basement level, where there was a pay bathroom. I decided to leave and find my way to the gate.

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-VG9aB65LP9k/T8xvhzYLQoI/AAAAAAAAA44/guHT0Wle3V0/s1600/IMAG0984.jpg

Around the hexagon

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-4OZil4A3blc/T8xvkEZDtOI/AAAAAAAAA5A/QEIT2qQGh2c/s1600/IMAG0985.jpg

FIDS over the BA checkin desks

The layout at TXL is unusual in that each gate or two has its own checkin desk, security, border control (if needed), holding room and luggage carousel (separated). I had already checked in, but couldn't see the way to security - I watched someone who checked in at the desk, and followed them through a small open doorway to the side of the desk (on the left in the photo above below the FIDS). It was not clearly marked, but most people seemed to know their way around. This was only my 2nd time departing from TXL, after a trip in 2006. In the holding room was a small cafe, duty free shop and toilets. I managed to catch the registration of the aircraft from the window here. Once it had arrived, the border control was right by the bridge, so the queue went back to the plane.The neighbouring gate area was also accessible, though no aircraft was docked there.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-nm8tp6RWFnY/T8xvoZaDFSI/AAAAAAAAA5Q/IFTZXaXQ-vo/s1600/IMAG0987.jpg

The holding area

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-7gMYHcwoWrA/T8xvmV_NZZI/AAAAAAAAA5I/sOURhhxZyhA/s1600/IMAG0986.jpg

Our tail

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-i33Tav704Yk/T8xvq8QMBiI/AAAAAAAAA5Y/-xTGI6mfP1U/s1600/IMAG0988.jpg

Our plane again from the neighbouring gate

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-cAsiUKaL6TM/T8xvtPyEwjI/AAAAAAAAA5g/KsGZ2CUAV7A/s1600/IMAG0989.jpg

Not much call for some of those types!

Before long 2 queues started to form, the left for Club and status passengers, the right for Traveller. I joined the left, but both queues were checked simultaneously, merging in the bridge to the door.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Z5Yaz04ywn8/T8xvvWaacZI/AAAAAAAAA5o/MEF-upS6Cns/s1600/IMAG0990.jpg

Legroom in seat 2F. I could stretch out!

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Vtrg1I28m9E/T8xvxYujMHI/AAAAAAAAA50/Q0m3Y6__UqI/s1600/IMAG0991.jpg

View in front



Started raining

In Club the middle seats are blocked off, and there was noone on the aisle seat on my row. I had originally been assigned 2A, but changed to 2F on checkin, in case we did the approach over London. We didn't in the end.

Before takeoff, hot towels were distributed, but not drinks. I would prefer a drink to be honest. The load in Traveller looked to be full (explaining the lack of award seats in the back) whereas in Club, about 3/4 of the seats were taken.

After the safety demonstration, we taxied out and took off powerfully to the west, passing over more lakes and forests. The area surrounding Berlin does seem to have a lot of these!

Not long after that, I was asked if I'd like some food, to which I agreed. The tray was presented, and hot rolls offered. Following the steward, a stewardess offered drinks - I reluctantly decided not to go for champagne, but took cranberry juice instead. I expected some kind of desert offering as well, but there was nothing, and no further service offering during the flight.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-vJYHv5eD1Us/T8xv1cUrIFI/AAAAAAAAA6E/1HS8vvyxpd8/s1600/IMAG0994.jpg

Meal tray



Real metal cutlery - nice BA emblem. They all remained on board.

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-oUkFnPNnzXg/T8xv3D63L3I/AAAAAAAAA6M/HOWEoA2xUL4/s1600/IMAG0995.jpg

Clear skies after reaching cruising altitude

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HVIumHaEiPs/T8xv4o9Un5I/AAAAAAAAA6U/5U1wzm-xmPY/s1600/IMAG0996.jpg

Looking back on the engine

We droned on, the cloud cover unbroken. At least the airshow was on the dropdown TVs. The light was very bright from outside, so beside periodically looking for other traffic (I saw none) I read a book on my Kindle: Days of Deja Vu by Jonathan Reid (about a guy who built his own yacht and sailed around the world). Highly recommended. Back to the flight: by now we were circling over Essex, which we did for 20 mins or so, until we went west over Watford, turning east to approach over Windsor. I only know this from the airshow TVs, as I couldn't see anything through the cloud. The TVs closed up, and famland was visible below, then some lakes and reservoirs (including one with an automatic waterskiing machine!) before crossing the M25 and touching down on 09L - another landing so smooth I almost didn't feel it. Then a long taxi to our stand on the south side of T5A.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-MoP_ys62be4/T8xv9JYRKDI/AAAAAAAAA6k/rV0j7N4u7CE/s1600/IMAG0998.jpg

Taxi past T5A

We all disembarked, heading for Arrivals and border control. After hearing horror stories about the queues, I was surprised to find that I was the 3rd person to arrive at the UK/EU desks, all 6 of which were manned, so no wait at all. I was soon welcomed back to the UK. I made my way out to the Tube station, for the long trek to Kings Cross.

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-7S4rhSwEiqI/T8xv_XYXYBI/AAAAAAAAA6s/V7nnmrwrX5Q/s1600/IMAG0999.jpg

TIDS at the Tube station

I found my way to the Thameslink platforms at St Pancras station, bought a ticket for Luton Aiport Parkway, and was soon heading back to my car, and the long drive home.

To conclude, I had a great day. It was great to see and finally meet everyone, for good conversation, food (if Currywurst counts!) and a beer. Special thanks must go to Suryo for meeting me at SXF and Blaz for the souvenir of Ljubliana! Until the next meeting...

A complete archive of all my trip reports can be found here:
http://signol.blogspot.co.uk/

[Edited 2012-06-04 04:13:55]
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
User avatar
airbuseric
Posts: 3560
Joined: Sat Jan 22, 2005 1:24 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 11:31 am

Hey Signol!

Great read and congrats being first reporting on the meet of last weekend!

Sorry to hear about the camera which went broken, but the phone pix come out quite good too.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
I hadn't eaten yet that day so I decided to have the Muffin deal, which means a £1 discount off a muffin and hot drink,

Also my choice on easyJet flights, with the strong Italian roasted coffee

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
As I had a Club Europe ticket, naturally I wanted to see the lounge

Good choice, and this particular lounge is quite good imho. I visited this place once with user BA319-131... comfy enough to enjoy a few beers.

Regards
Eric
"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
 
jwhite9185
Posts: 1581
Joined: Wed May 16, 2007 10:34 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 12:06 pm

Good to see a couple of familiar pics from another angle! Hopefully i can make it to a meet one day...
@mytripreport
 
Widebodyroga
Posts: 609
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2008 7:35 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 12:10 pm

Great stuff signol and congrats on posting the first BER meeting TR! Too bad for the postponed opening of BER of course. I still can't believe that it will take them another 10 months to open it.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
whilst on holiday in Corfu

Obvious question: Where's the TR for that trip?   Did the broken camera rendered one impossible?

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
which only charges £2 per day on weekends

Wow, 2 quid? That's unreal. That's why I love Luton.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Did someone lose a hat?

Maybe the FlyingFinn in his hurry to leave Berlin on Saturday left his hat behind?

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
They all remained on board

You are a noble man and one that can resist temptation. We are very different  


A very enjoyable and appropriately brief TR. Thanks signol!

WBodyroga
Visit my aviation page: http://widebodyroga.weebly.com/
 
SloAir
Posts: 322
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2010 8:15 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 12:55 pm

Hi Signol,

congratulations on being the first one to put up a TR form this great weekend! It was really nice meeting you and all the other trip reporters and aviation enthusiasts.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
I spent a few too many minutes trying to open my eyes and finally put my car into gear at 3.30 for the drive to Luton.

That is an early wake up call, I think that only Markus can do those without any problems  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The queue was massive, though moving quite quickly its shear size meant it took some time.

When I flew out of LTN in April on JP we were allowed to use fast track security - 'It comes with the airline' But the normal security line was very short that evening so it did not make much difference.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Reg confirmation

I flew G-EZDR from STN to LJU last year  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The famous currywurst

The currywrust was great, worth making the trip just for that.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Did someone lose a hat?

It wasn't FlyingFinn was it?  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The layout at TXL is unusual in that each gate or two has its own checkin desk, security, border control (if needed), holding room and luggage carousel (separated).

The layout at TXL is nothing I have seen anywhere before. It looks like the system is not that good if not a lot of airports are using it.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Special thanks must go to Suryo for meeting me at SXF and Blaz for the souvenir of Ljubliana!

You're welcome and you're even more welcome to come here and take a look yourself   Flights from LTN with Adria or Wizzair are quite affordable these days.

It was a great way to relive the (not)BER meeting through your trip report and I'm looking forward to all the others. I think it will take me a little more time to put mine up  

Blaž
Visit Ljubljana
 
Hywel
Posts: 700
Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 12:51 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 1:18 pm

Thanks for the report   I'm doing a similar trip next week, flying LGW-SXF with easyJet and returning TXL-LHR with BA using Avios. I'm staying in Berlin for 2 nights however to do a bit of sightseeing (and beer tasting)  
 
signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:25 pm

Thanks for the comments so far!

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 1):
Great read and congrats being first reporting on the meet of last weekend!

Thank you!

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 1):
Good choice, and this particular lounge is quite good imho. I visited this place once with user BA319-131... comfy enough to enjoy a few beers.

It was very pleasant indeed  
Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 2):
Good to see a couple of familiar pics from another angle! Hopefully i can make it to a meet one day...

Thanks - I've been a member for a few years now and this was my first meet.

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 3):
Great stuff signol and congrats on posting the first BER meeting TR

Thanks!

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 3):
I still can't believe that it will take them another 10 months to open it.

I heard they didn't need that long, but didn't want to open in the midst of winter, so made an extra delay to open after the worst weather (hopefully!)

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 3):
Obvious question: Where's the TR for that trip? Did the broken camera rendered one impossible?

It'll come soon enough   I only returned on Friday, and half the photos are on my wife's camera...

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 3):
Wow, 2 quid? That's unreal. That's why I love Luton.

But you still have to pay the airport shuttle bus!

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 3):
Maybe the FlyingFinn in his hurry to leave Berlin on Saturday left his hat behind?

Lol, there's also a white one...

Quoting Widebodyroga (Reply 3):
You are a noble man and one that can resist temptation. We are very different

  Somehow we have an old style BA teaspoon at home, and also an American Airlines one. Thing is, neither my wife nor I have ever flown AA!

Quoting SloAir (Reply 4):
congratulations on being the first one to put up a TR form this great weekend! It was really nice meeting you and all the other trip reporters and aviation enthusiasts.

Thanks!

Quoting SloAir (Reply 4):
I think that only Markus can do those without any problems

True  
Quoting SloAir (Reply 4):
When I flew out of LTN in April on JP we were allowed to use fast track security - 'It comes with the airline' But the normal security line was very short that evening so it did not make much difference.

There is a Fast Track, that you can pay (£3 I think) to use, lane number 1 (on the left as you enter). This was another reserved lane, lane 10 (on the far right) for closing flights.

Quoting SloAir (Reply 4):
I flew G-EZDR from STN to LJU last year

Nice!

Quoting SloAir (Reply 4):
You're welcome and you're even more welcome to come here and take a look yourself Flights from LTN with Adria or Wizzair are quite affordable these days.

I would love to, Ljubliana is on my bucket list (along with many other places!) In the next few years.

Quoting SloAir (Reply 4):
I think it will take me a little more time to put mine up

I'll look forward to it!

Quoting Hywel (Reply 5):
Thanks for the report

Thank you!

Quoting Hywel (Reply 5):
I'm doing a similar trip next week, flying LGW-SXF with easyJet and returning TXL-LHR with BA using Avios.

Excellent plan  
Quoting Hywel (Reply 5):
I'm staying in Berlin for 2 nights however to do a bit of sightseeing (and beer tasting)

Berlin is definitely a nice place to visit for longer.

Thanks for the continued comments!

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
User avatar
sultanils
Posts: 1932
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2010 5:37 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:50 pm

Hello signol,

Nice to read your part of the travels and your impression on the meet. The contrast in your flights taken couldn’t be greater: bare to the bone going out on easyJet and coming back, bathing in luxury and style on BA (that’s just a little bit exaggerated  ). Nice meeting you in person for now: bye bye til the next time’!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
so I booked the "inaugural" Luton - Brandenburg on Easyjet

So much for an inaugural, going to SXF iso BER ha ha ha!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Periodically someone with a microphone would call out flights about to depart

In a civilised airport in the UK, that still happens? Still better than someone shouting it out in full without any voice fortification.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
He was instantly recognisable from his photos

He’s practically the only one I guess  

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Did someone lose a hat?

It looked a bit like Petteri’s!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
where there was a pay bathroom.

An absolute scandal: paying for a toilet visit in an airport...

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
They all remained on board.

  You’re a good boy!

Sultanils
In thrust we trust.
 
signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:54 pm

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 7):
Hello signol,

Hi Nils!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 7):
The contrast in your flights taken couldn’t be greater: bare to the bone going out on easyJet and coming back, bathing in luxury and style on BA

I know  
Quoting Sultanils (Reply 7):
Nice meeting you in person for now: bye bye til the next time’!

The feeling is mutual - until the next time!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 7):
So much for an inaugural, going to SXF iso BER ha ha ha!

Lol, same runway, plane turned onto the taxiway to the right instead of the left!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 7):
In a civilised airport in the UK, that still happens?

Luton, civilized?   It was actually a microphone conncted to a standalone amp and speaker, like a DJ at at wedding would have...

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 7):
An absolute scandal: paying for a toilet visit in an airport.

A disgrace indeed. As well as the lack of facilities in the lounge!

Quoting Sultanils (Reply 7):
You’re a good boy!

Thank you  

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
lukeyboy95
Posts: 1058
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2008 7:07 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 5:52 pm

Hi Signol.

Thanks for accounting for the meet for those that did not have the oportunity to make it.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Then just a few weeks before the big day, it was announced that the new airport would not be operating at all! Both airlines reverted to their original Berlin locations, so I would arrive at Schoenefeld, and depart from Tegel

This was highly unexpected... especially given the old cliches of German efficiency. Alas, we are all human....

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Some of the shuttle busses have been modified to look a bit like a tram, with covered wheels. You're not fooling anyone, they are still busses.

I think these are revolting looking. A train/ a bus... don't bastardise it.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
After a while, it was beer o'clock

This seems to be more like 'the top of the hour' with Anet folks as opposed to a specific time of day!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Mongolian Airlines 767 from Ulaan Batur

Very nice... totally forgot about their European services. I will be very interested to see how this fares up now that the carriers are seeing the potential of Mongolia. TK recently announced the first services with good connections....

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The bar area, however, was well stocked. A shame as I'd be driving later and I had my one beer with the guys downstairs.

Alot of respect for you. I gave in dramatically as you may recall, and had to sleep it off in the car. Grr...

Had expected something a little more plushy with BA, but I suspect the lounge offering may be a little more revamped upon the move.

Many thanks Signol, and kudos for getting a TR promptly (still a 4 months backlogue with me!)

Luke!
Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
 
HT
Posts: 5857
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 6:20 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:05 pm

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Did someone lose a hat?  

The intelligible object 10 rows to the left of the white hat was a Teddy Bear.
Must have caused a lot of tears loosing it or even worse, still seeing it but being unable to retrieve it.
-HT
Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
 
deltamartin
Posts: 981
Joined: Sun Dec 05, 2010 5:48 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:23 pm

Hello Signol!

Nice tripreport!
Glad to see you guys had a good time in Berlin, shame I couldn't attend this time. Ah well, there's always a next time!
Seems like you had a nice couple of flights. My first Business Class flight was with BA earlier this year, so it was nice to read about it from your point of view.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Not much call for some of those types!

I thought the exact same thing when I was at TXL in January. One of the gates even had marks for the Concorde!

Martin
 
FlyingFinn76
Posts: 1698
Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2009 12:10 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:33 pm

Hi Signol,

Did you and Nils perhaps have some sort of a competition over who gets their report up first? Anyway congratulations on being the first one, sort of reminds me of comments in Slashdot back in the days  

A nice account on your daytrip to Berlin - that sounds like a long day for you but nice company and planes certainly are worth it! That meet was fun, although Sunday seems to be the real aviation day, not that I'm saying the dinner on Saturday was bad, not by a long shot, quite the opposite in fact!

Shame we missed each other, but hey, I still need to log NWI airport so maybe you'll see mee there aboard a KLC flight ot something  .

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
and some Nectar points on an Easyjet flight the other way.

Ahh, now there's the perfect excuse for the missus to go shopping: "I need some Nectar points for a flight to XXX, why don't you go and get yourself a new blouse or something?"  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Did someone lose a hat?

Not me! Didn't wear it today as it was so hot but I swear it is right here!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
After the safety demonstration, we taxied out and took off powerfully to the west, passing over more lakes and forests. The area surrounding Berlin does seem to have a lot of these!

Oh yes, especially on the western side the scenery reminds me of Finland. When landing on the 08s and sitting on the left you get an excellent view of them, just like in your case taking off on the opposite direction and sitting on the opposite side.
 
infodesk
Posts: 1462
Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 11:06 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:00 pm

Hi Signol,

Many congratulations on being the first person to post their BER report! Good that you were able to use points/miles for the flights and a nice little treat flying in Club on the return. The lounge at TXL seems to fit exactly, what a mish-mash of strange chairs.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Obligatory legroom shot

Ouch. I'd forgotten just how bad it is on ezy.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
For those interested, the muffin was average, a little dry and crumbly but not overly so.

Where's Rasmus?!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Real metal cutlery - nice BA emblem. They all remained on board.

Very noble of you. I wouldn't have been able to resisit temptation.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 12):
Ahh, now there's the perfect excuse for the missus to go shopping: "I need some Nectar points for a flight to XXX, why don't you go and get yourself a new blouse or something?"

Nice idea, but I suspect more than a blouse is needed  
Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 12):
Oh yes, especially on the western side the scenery reminds me of Finland

Funny, I thought exactly the same thing too.

Happy flying
Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
Luxair747SP
Posts: 543
Joined: Fri May 21, 2010 2:24 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 8:11 pm

Hi Signol,

Great report about the meeting!
The service on BA looks really nice, especially the meal.
EZY seems also to be fine with decent fares.
Was nice to meet you in Berlin.

Cheers
Johannes
My blog about travelling in Moscow & Russia:
https://russiainanutshell.wordpress.com
 
stipica
Posts: 419
Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 2:55 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 10:26 pm

Hi signol !

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
To BER or not to BER, that is the question

this was my dilemma ... because of my commitments I am unable to buy tickets in advance ... so week before the trip I decide not to go ... no new airport , ticket is very expensive more than 400 eur ... and now I'm sorry but next time  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Some of the shuttle busses have been modified to look a bit like a tram, with covered wheels. You're not fooling anyone, they are still busses.

but looks good

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
For those interested, the muffin was average, a little dry and crumbly but not overly so.

hahaha muffins infection is spreading and what about form ... for Finns form is important after all they are "the design nation" cough cough  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Real metal cutlery - nice BA emblem. They all remained on board.

outrageous for A.net simply outrageous
thanks for first BER trip report ...stipica  
Open your eyes and think
 
airtrainer
Posts: 1492
Joined: Sat Aug 30, 2003 11:44 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 04, 2012 10:29 pm

Hi Robin,

Thanks for the great trip report ! Was nice to meet you briefly after your arrival at SXF, I missed the group later at TXL due to the bad weather. Hope to see you next time  
Life is short : eat dessert first !
 
aussiepomm
Posts: 45
Joined: Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:04 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Tue Jun 05, 2012 4:34 am

On my one time into TXL, it was the summer of '10, I found it to be a wonderful little airport... It had a sense of a regional aspect about it. Having said that, I did enjoy sitting inside as it was quite warm outside, and I wasn't game to head out onto the spotting area!

I will be looking forward to flying with KLM for the first time in a few weeks, when I venture from KRS to AMS and PRG, then from AMS to OSL for my trip back, and I am inspired by your photos of the KLM B738.

Thanks for the TR, it was a great read and a series of great pics!
if my calculations are correct slinky + escalator = everlasting fun!
 
signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Tue Jun 05, 2012 7:11 am

Hi all,

thanks for the comments!

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 9):

Thanks for accounting for the meet for those that did not have the oportunity to make it.

Thank you

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 9):
This was highly unexpected... especially given the old cliches of German efficiency

I know. If Warsaw Modlin opens on time, there will be even more egg on the Germans' faces...

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 9):
I think these are revolting looking. A train/ a bus... don't bastardise it.

Agreed.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 9):
Very nice... totally forgot about their European services

This is their European service... Many comments asking Gabriel when he'll fly it  
Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 9):
Had expected something a little more plushy with BA, but I suspect the lounge offering may be a little more revamped upon the move.

I knew what to expect. A shame that they don't (yet) have the BD mid-haul planes integreated, some of the LHR-DUB reports show some really nice J seats on the A319/320/321s.

Quoting HT (Reply 10):
The intelligible object 10 rows to the left of the white hat was a Teddy Bear.

I hadn't noticed. Having children myself, I know how hard that can be - why we have 4 identical bears  
Quoting deltamartin (Reply 11):
Nice tripreport!

Thank you!

Quoting deltamartin (Reply 11):
My first Business Class flight was with BA earlier this year, so it was nice to read about it from your point of view.

Again, thanks!

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 12):
Did you and Nils perhaps have some sort of a competition over who gets their report up first?

Lol, not at all. I thought of the title (noone's mentioned the reference yet!) weeks ago and wanted to make sure noone else used it first  
Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 12):
A nice account on your daytrip to Berlin - that sounds like a long day for you but nice company and planes certainly are worth it!

Indeed. I also didn't mention that I was back to work on the Monday morning, up at 6 for the office at 8 (an hour's drive away)...

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 12):
not that I'm saying the dinner on Saturday was bad, not by a long shot, quite the opposite in fact!

I would have liked to have stayed the whole weekend, but finance, family, etc,

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 12):
Shame we missed each other, but hey, I still need to log NWI airport so maybe you'll see mee there aboard a KLC flight ot something

Do it   And there are some nice other carriers there too - BE with their Dashes and Dorniers to EDI, MAN, EXT and NQY, BD and Eastern to ABZ, and some mostly weekly flights to the Med resorts.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 12):
Ahh, now there's the perfect excuse for the missus to go shopping: "I need some Nectar points for a flight to XXX, why don't you go and get yourself a new blouse or something?"

I think I'd rather get the Avios than Nectar - note the difference in legroom on the 2 flights   Most of my Avios come from Tesco anyway.

Quoting FlyingFinn76 (Reply 12):
Not me!

I was wondering  
Quoting infodesk (Reply 13):
Good that you were able to use points/miles for the flights and a nice little treat flying in Club on the return.

Hi Infodesk, thanks. A good way to reduce cash outflow  
Quoting infodesk (Reply 13):
Ouch. I'd forgotten just how bad it is on ezy.

Very tight, must be up (or rather, down) there with FR. I dread to think of their longer, Canaries, TLV, Egypt flights are like...

Quoting infodesk (Reply 13):
Where's Rasmus?!

Lol, I was thinking of his muffin reviews when I ate it  
Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 14):
Great report about the meeting!

Thanks Johannes!

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 14):
The service on BA looks really nice, especially the meal.

It was very tasty, just lacking a desert.

Quoting Luxair747SP (Reply 14):
Was nice to meet you in Berlin

And you too!

Quoting stipica (Reply 15):
so week before the trip I decide not to go ... no new airport , ticket is very expensive more than 400 eur ... and now I'm sorry but next time

A shame, it was a good meeting!

Quoting stipica (Reply 15):
but looks good

That is your opinion  
Quoting stipica (Reply 15):
hahaha muffins infection is spreading and what about form

It was a bit early to review the beer...

Quoting airtrainer (Reply 16):
Thanks for the great trip report !

Thank you!

Quoting airtrainer (Reply 16):
Was nice to meet you briefly after your arrival at SXF, I missed the group later at TXL

You too, a shame you didn't make it in time to TXL.

Quoting aussiepomm (Reply 17):
I found it to be a wonderful little airport... It had a sense of a regional aspect about it.

Hi aussiepomm, yes, it is a nice airport, just not well designed to be a hub, but good for O&D flights with smaller aircraft.

Quoting aussiepomm (Reply 17):
I am inspired by your photos of the KLM B738.

Did you mean Sultanils' report?   I didn't take any pictures of the KL738  
Quoting aussiepomm (Reply 17):
Thanks for the TR, it was a great read and a series of great pics!

Thank you!

And thanks for the comments!

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
PlaneHunter
Posts: 6512
Joined: Tue Mar 14, 2006 3:17 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Tue Jun 05, 2012 10:20 am

Hi Signol,

congratulations on being the first one to post a report about the meeting! You still managed to create a nice report despite the lack of a decent camera. It was good to meet you, hopefully we'll have more time to talk next time.


PH
Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
 
717Flyer
Posts: 301
Joined: Sat Jun 04, 2011 10:41 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:27 am

Hi Robin!

You certainly were quick to upload this report - I haven't even started writing mine yet. Nevertheless an enjoyable read and it was nice meeting you on the spot as well!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
First, it must be noted that my compact camera broke the week before this, whilst on holiday in Corfu, so all photos are taken with my phone camera.

Sorry to hear, so are we going to see any report about your trip to Corfu?

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Both airlines reverted to their original Berlin locations, so I would arrive at Schoenefeld, and depart from Tegel.

Sounds familiar! I did it the other way though, something I regret as every minute spent at Schönefeld is a minute too much...

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Soon the service started. I hadn't eaten yet that day so I decided to have the Muffin deal, which means a £1 discount off a muffin and hot drink,

Good choice! But where's the muffin test?  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Plenty of people took photos at the meet, so I will try some that may or may not be repeated. As this was my first meeting, I was pleased to be made welcome into the group. I could not have hoped for a nicer group of people to spend a few hours with, and I hope I can make another meet before too long!

This was my first meeting as well and I can only agree with you - it was a great day!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The highlight of the day - Mongolian Airlines 767 from Ulaan Batur

That livery really has quite a few things in common with the Jet Airways one!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 13):
Where's Rasmus?!
Quoting signol (Reply 18):
Lol, I was thinking of his muffin reviews when I ate it

 

Happy flying!
717Flyer
 
signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Tue Jun 05, 2012 1:22 pm

Hi PlaneHunter, 717Flyer,

thanks for the comments!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 19):
congratulations on being the first one to post a report about the meeting!

Thank you!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 19):
You still managed to create a nice report despite the lack of a decent camera

Again, thank you!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 19):
It was good to meet you, hopefully we'll have more time to talk next time.

Indeed, to the next time!

Quoting 717Flyer (Reply 20):
I haven't even started writing mine yet. Nevertheless an enjoyable read and it was nice meeting you on the spot as well!

Thanks, and good to meet you too!

Quoting 717Flyer (Reply 20):
Sorry to hear, so are we going to see any report about your trip to Corfu?

Of course, it is in progress  
Quoting 717Flyer (Reply 20):
Sounds familiar! I did it the other way though,

Ah, I didn't have much choice, mainly due to logistics on where to leave my car early that morning.

Quoting 717Flyer (Reply 20):
Good choice! But where's the muffin test?

I didn't rate it with a score, but there is a short "review" of the taste  
Quoting 717Flyer (Reply 20):
it was a great day!

  

Thanks again

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
dkdaviator
Posts: 90
Joined: Fri Jun 12, 2009 7:34 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Tue Jun 05, 2012 3:46 pm

Nice to read about your trip to the meet in Berlin, and wow, you got it posted quick!  

Too bad about your camera, but still I would say the pics did not turn out bad.

Also too bad what you originally booked and thought would be the "inaugural" didn't turn out that way. But it seems like it was a good trip anyway.
dkdaviator
 
CaptainRed
Posts: 784
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RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Wed Jun 06, 2012 5:28 pm

Hi signol,

good to read your version of the events in Berlin   It was definitely nice to meet you.

And seems like you had two nice flights as well, especially of course the BA one in Club Europe. The meal you got looks very nice, good for a flight of this length (and certainly a bit healthier than all the currywursts we had   )

Greetings
CaptainRed
 
akhmad
Posts: 2498
Joined: Sat Sep 03, 2005 2:20 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:53 am

My friend Signol,

First of all, congratulation for being the first one covering our BER meeting.   



Quoting signol (Thread starter):
First, it must be noted that my compact camera broke the week before this, whilst on holiday in Corfu, so all photos are taken with my phone camera.

If you had not told me about your broken camera, I would have thought that these nice pictures of yours were just taken by your compact camera.  


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
so I decided to use some Avios one way, and some Nectar points on an Easyjet flight the other way
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
so I decided to use some Avios one way, and some Nectar points on an Easyjet flight the other way

Well done! Especially the Nectar points on Easyjet.   


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
There was no availabilty on the afternoon flight in Traveller, so was forced to sit in the front

I love this expression. “Forced” to sit in the front.  


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
I stopped at a 24 hour McDo near Cambridge just before 5am hoping for a greasy breakfast, but they were still selling the "daytime" menu - the guy joked that I was an "early riser" rather than a "late reveller",

The guy had a point.   


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
at Luton Airport Parkway station, which only charges £2 per day on weekends, a bit more in the week (probably the cheapest parking near the airport) and walked to the shuttle bus stop. The bus cost is £1.50 single, £2.50 return.

That’s a great airport parking deal.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
I needn't have worried! A couple had taken an aisle and middle seat near the back, so I managed to get the window next to them

Way to go!   


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Muffin and Starbucks tea

Which tea did you have? Masala chai?

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
I had arranged to meet user Akhmad at the arrivals, as he was staying in the Albergo hotel still, after many others had changed hotels for a city centre one.

Luckily, I had company of Marc at the hotel and yours of course the following day!  


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
He was instantly recognisable from his photos

Nice to hear that!   


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Hauptnahhof

Aah, memories!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Did someone lose a hat?   

Not me.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The highlight of the day - Mongolian Airlines 767 from Ulaan Batur

  


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
(pour your own glass from large bottles in the fridge).

Interesting way of serving.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The layout at TXL is unusual in that each gate or two has its own checkin desk, security, border control (if needed), holding room and luggage carousel (separated).

Great observation!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Real metal cutlery - nice BA emblem. They all remained on board.

Good boy!  


Quoting signol (Thread starter):
food (if Currywurst counts!)

Sure, it counts!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Special thanks must go to Suryo for meeting me at SXF

Aaw, thanks! The pleasure was mine.  


Signol, it was really nice to meet you in person. Thank you so much for being a great companion.

Warm regards,
Suryo  
Friends forever
 
parton87
Posts: 501
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2008 2:20 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:56 am

Hello Signol!

Thanks for the great report! You seemed to have nice flights, especially the BA one. They´re a good carrier that´s for sure!

Congratulations to being the first to post a report from the great meeting last weekend. It was nice to meet you and all the others. Looking forward for the next one!

Greetings
Robert
 
User avatar
OA260
Posts: 21112
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RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Thu Jun 07, 2012 1:12 pm

Hey Robin ,

Nice read  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
First, it must be noted that my compact camera broke the week before this, whilst on holiday in Corfu,

Thats a shame . Still you managed fine with the phone pics so doesnt matter really.  

Glad you had a good time . Nice to fly home in CE . Nice of you to leave the cutlery behind lol..  

Thanks for the report.

Regards

Philip  
 
signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Thu Jun 07, 2012 2:29 pm

Hi all,

thanks for the continued comments!

Quoting dkdaviator (Reply 22):
Nice to read about your trip to the meet in Berlin, and wow, you got it posted quick!

Thank you!

Quoting dkdaviator (Reply 22):
but still I would say the pics did not turn out bad.

Again, thanks! The camera on my HTC Desire is not bad.

Quoting dkdaviator (Reply 22):
But it seems like it was a good trip anyway.

Indeed it was.

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 23):
good to read your version of the events in Berlin It was definitely nice to meet you.

Thanks CaptainRed. For sure nice to meet you, and everyone else, as well!

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 23):
especially of course the BA one in Club Europe

Indeed  
Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 23):
The meal you got looks very nice, good for a flight of this length (and certainly a bit healthier than all the currywursts we had )

It was   Though like I said, it was lacking any kind of desert.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 24):
My friend Signol,

Thank you Suryo  
Quoting akhmad (Reply 24):
If you had not told me about your broken camera, I would have thought that these nice pictures of yours were just taken by your compact camera.

Thanks - the phone camera is quite good, for a phone.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 24):
Well done! Especially the Nectar points on Easyjet

Thanks! Some shopping at Sainsburys...

Quoting akhmad (Reply 24):
“Forced” to sit in the front.

 
Quoting akhmad (Reply 24):
That’s a great airport parking deal.

For a weekend and public holiday, it is very good. It is of course more expensive on work days, it is I think aimed at park and ride commuters into London, so (I think) £7 per day during the week - still a good price for airport parking.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 24):
Which tea did you have? Masala chai?

English Breakfast  
Quoting akhmad (Reply 24):
Signol, it was really nice to meet you in person. Thank you so much for being a great companion.

Suryo, the pleasure was mine  
Quoting Parton87 (Reply 25):
Thanks for the great report!

Thank you!

Quoting Parton87 (Reply 25):
You seemed to have nice flights, especially the BA one. They´re a good carrier that´s for sure!

Indeed they are!

Quoting Parton87 (Reply 25):
It was nice to meet you and all the others. Looking forward for the next one!

And I am too.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 26):
Nice read

Thanks Philip!

Quoting OA260 (Reply 26):
Thats a shame . Still you managed fine with the phone pics so doesnt matter really.

Yes, should be able to be repaired or replaced under warranty, I only bought it in September.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 26):
Glad you had a good time . Nice to fly home in CE

Thanks! My first flight in Business, I could get used to it  

Thanks again for the comments

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
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CARST
Posts: 901
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2006 11:00 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Thu Jun 07, 2012 4:12 pm

Good and solid TR. Was the legroom acceptable on Easyjet? Looks rather smallish.

Taking the tube to London's city center and connecting to a another train to LTN takes quite a while, is there no easer way to go to LTN? Like some bus connection between the airports? Or a national rail service going not through the city center?
 
aussiepomm
Posts: 45
Joined: Tue Mar 08, 2011 2:04 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Fri Jun 08, 2012 12:06 am

Quoting signol (Reply 18):
Did you mean Sultanils' report? I didn't take any pictures of the KL738

   now I am TOTALLY red-faced, yes I did mean Sultanil's, but in any case, a lot of what I said is still valid, re TXL... STILL, I enjoyed the read of your TR all the same!! (sheepishly, runs and tries to hide...)   
if my calculations are correct slinky + escalator = everlasting fun!
 
signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Fri Jun 08, 2012 3:30 pm

Hi Carst,

Quoting CARST (Reply 28):
Good and solid TR
Quoting CARST (Reply 28):
Was the legroom acceptable on Easyjet? Looks rather smallish.

It was tight, I wouldn't like to be there on one of the longer flights.

Quoting CARST (Reply 28):
Taking the tube to London's city center and connecting to a another train to LTN takes quite a while, is there no easer way to go to LTN? Like some bus connection between the airports? Or a national rail service going not through the city center?

There is a direct bus, but I looked at the schedules on my phone, the time taken was a few minutes longer, for almost double the price! And no national rail bypassing the city centre, apart from the North London Line which would involve more changes and more money!

Quoting aussiepomm (Reply 29):
yes I did mean Sultanil's

No worries  
Quoting aussiepomm (Reply 29):
STILL, I enjoyed the read of your TR all the same!! (sheepishly, runs and tries to hide...)

Thanks!

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
roberts87
Posts: 1091
Joined: Sat Dec 24, 2011 9:59 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Sat Jun 09, 2012 6:56 am

Nice report!

Seems like another decent U2 flight, although I hate their boarding process. BA is busines as usual.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
As this was my first meeting, I was pleased to be made welcome into the group. I could not have hoped for a nicer group of people to spend a few hours with, and I hope I can make another meet before too long!

I hope I have better luck meeting everyone next time!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Unfortunately there was no bathroom, you had to exit, and go downstairs to the basement level, where there was a pay bathroom. I

I think TXL is the only airport I've encountered where one has to pay to use the washroom. Strangely enough, the washroom in the LCC-ish terminal down the road are free.
 
Knightsofmalta
Posts: 1687
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2005 10:51 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Sat Jun 09, 2012 7:03 am

Hi Signol

Good report, thanks!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Some of the shuttle busses have been modified to look a bit like a tram, with covered wheels. You're not fooling anyone, they are still busses.

I dunno, personally I must say I don't think I've ever come across such a funky looking bus.

In any case, it looks like you had a good time in Berlin, even without visiting the new BBI.

The meal you got on BA in Club looks rather nice actually.

Just out of curiosity, does air Berlin now have a lounge in TXL or does the BA lounge function as the OneWorld lounge?

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

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Sat Jun 09, 2012 10:51 pm

Another one of the Berlin reports, and nice to see the different perspectives of how everyone got there.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
I spent a few too many minutes trying to open my eyes

Hilarious. That feeling is indeed terrible.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Some of the shuttle busses have been modified to look a bit like a tram, with covered wheels. You're not fooling anyone, they are still busses.

They look like the new Toronto subway cars but put to service on the roads lol

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
It turned out that Gate 11 was a bus gate, and that a bus full of passengers had already boarded, so I wasn't holding much hope for a good seat. I needn't have worried! A couple had taken an aisle and middle seat near the back, so I managed to get the window next to them. The flight looked like it was full.

Is seating a free for all on these LCCs?

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
View forward

Desperate advertising!!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
After a while, it was beer o'clock,

And is this at the strike of every hour thereafter lol

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Did someone lose a hat?

Hilarious. Reminds me of a guy at the top of the Burj Khalifa who was posing for a photo, and his cap blew off with the wind. I wonder if that was indeed captured on camera!!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Not long after that, I was asked if I'd like some food, to which I agreed.

Asked? Was this dine on demand.
 
aya333
Posts: 107
Joined: Sat Aug 02, 2008 7:10 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Sun Jun 10, 2012 12:47 pm

Hi, and thanks for a nice report!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Luton Airport station shuttle bus

Looks like a space age bus to me!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The famous currywurst

Oh yes! Always so tasty and possibly a bit unhealthy 
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Unfortunately there was no bathroom, you had to exit, and go downstairs to the basement level, where there was a pay bathroom.

No bathroom? Oh dear! It's about time to open a new airport in Berlin!

Quoting signol (Reply 18):
If Warsaw Modlin opens on time, there will be even more egg on the Germans' faces...

I thought like that also when I was in Berlin. And I had decided not to travel there in March when the opening of BER really takes place (possibly). But this morning I found myself looking for interesting ways to get there....

See you again!

Jani
319,320,321,333,343,388,717,732,733,735,736,73G,738,752,AB4,AR1,AR8,ATR,AT7,D9S,D10,DH4,E45,E70,E90,F27,F50,M82,M83,M90,
 
signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:27 pm

Thanks for the continued comments!

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 31):
Nice report!

Thank you!

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 31):
Seems like another decent U2 flight, although I hate their boarding process

Indeed, theough the boarding process can be good if you are in the front of the queue  
Quoting roberts87 (Reply 31):
I think TXL is the only airport I've encountered where one has to pay to use the washroom

Me too. I'm not sure if it is a "tip" or "donation", or a fee.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 32):
Good report, thanks!

Thanks!

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 32):
I must say I don't think I've ever come across such a funky looking bus.

They exist in a few places in the UK. I've also seen them in York.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 32):
it looks like you had a good time in Berlin, even without visiting the new BBI.

True, I got to see the new BER building from the landing at SXF...

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 32):

The meal you got on BA in Club looks rather nice actually.

It was very tasty, though like I said, it could have done with a desert of some kind.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 32):
Just out of curiosity, does air Berlin now have a lounge in TXL or does the BA lounge function as the OneWorld lounge?

To be honest, I've no idea. I don't think they have a "business class" on their short routes, and I'm not sure it is worth maintaining a lounge for only a couple of flights. Something tells me there was a report once (Ronerone? to AUH) where the BA Terraces lounge was offered to AB Business passengers.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 33):
Another one of the Berlin reports, and nice to see the different perspectives of how everyone got there.

Thanks!

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 33):
Hilarious. That feeling is indeed terrible.

I was impressed with myself that even at 3am I managed to go from asleep to driving my car in 30 mins.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 33):
Is seating a free for all on these LCCs?

Certainly on Easyjet and Ryanair, but there is assigned seating on Flybe and Germanwings. I'm not sure of the others.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 33):
Asked? Was this dine on demand.

The crew came with the trolley and asked, "would you like something to eat?" I guess if you refused then, it would be difficult to get some food later in the short flight.

Quoting AYA333 (Reply 34):
Hi, and thanks for a nice report!

Thanks!

Quoting AYA333 (Reply 34):
Oh yes! Always so tasty and possibly a bit unhealthy

Indeed, OK though occasionally!

Quoting AYA333 (Reply 34):
No bathroom? Oh dear! It's about time to open a new airport in Berlin!

Lol  
Quoting AYA333 (Reply 34):
But this morning I found myself looking for interesting ways to get there....

I'm wondering too... A half hearted idea of FR STN-GSE, W6 GSE-WMI...

Quoting AYA333 (Reply 34):
See you again!

And you too!

Thanks again all

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
The777Man
Posts: 5923
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RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Wed Jun 13, 2012 3:46 pm

Hi Signol!

Nice report from your flights to the BER meeting! Good that you were able to attend and too bad I wasn't. Hopefully I'll be there the next time.

Great that you were able to use miles/points to cut down on cost. The muffins look like a good deal and the return meal looks good as well.

Nice pictures from Berlin!

Looking forward to your next report!

The777Man
Boeing 777s flown: UA, TG, KE, BA, CX, NH, JD, JL, CZ, SQ, EK, NG, CO, AF, SV, KU, DL, AA, MH, OZ, CA, MS, SU, LY, RG, PE, AZ, KL, VN, PK, EY, NZ, AM, BR, AC, DT, UU, OS, AI, 9W, KQ, QR, VA, JJ, ET, TK, PR, BG, T5, CI, MU and LX.. Further to fly.. LH 777
 
signol
Topic Author
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Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Wed Jun 13, 2012 7:38 pm

Hi there 777Man!

Quoting The777Man (Reply 36):
Nice report from your flights to the BER meeting! Good that you were able to attend and too bad I wasn't. Hopefully I'll be there the next time.

Thanks! Always good to meet fellow A.netters, maybe you can next time!

Quoting The777Man (Reply 36):

Great that you were able to use miles/points to cut down on cost.

Yes, anything to save a few pennies  
Quoting The777Man (Reply 36):
The muffins look like a good deal and the return meal looks good as well.

The muffin deal wasn't bad for a BOB price, though still quite expensive. The return meal was very nice too, though I'd expect that for Business!

Quoting The777Man (Reply 36):
Nice pictures from Berlin!

Thanks!

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
FLIEGER67
Posts: 5195
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2003 4:43 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Sun Jun 17, 2012 6:10 am

Hey, R.,

good to see youre part of the Berlin meeting. I am catching up with all the stories by now from one to another.
Sure a good read. Shame that we missed each other this time. Maybe next time.

Greetings,
Markus (FLIEGER67)
Tripreporter.net
 
MSS658
Posts: 2454
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2010 8:16 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Sun Jun 17, 2012 4:49 pm

Hello Signol

Thanks for sharing the report, it was nice meeting you in person.
The flights seemed pretty good you took. I was impressed by my EZY from SXF to BRU as well.

Greetings
Marc
Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
 
signol
Topic Author
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RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Mon Jun 18, 2012 12:07 pm

Hi Markus, Marc,

thanks for replying!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 38):
Sure a good read

Thank you!

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 38):
good to see youre part of the Berlin meeting
Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 38):
Shame that we missed each other this time. Maybe next time.

Indeed, until the next one!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 39):
Thanks for sharing the report

Thank you for reading!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 39):
it was nice meeting you in person.

The feeling is likewise, and thanks for the chocolates!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 39):
The flights seemed pretty good you took. I was impressed by my EZY from SXF to BRU as well.

They were indeed good, though U2 borders on average. Tight legroom and a dry muffin...

Thanks again

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
adamspotter
Posts: 1191
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RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Thu Jun 21, 2012 10:47 pm

Hi Signol,

Nice report on the BER meet, too bad I couldn't make it myself. Such a shame that your camera broke but you still managed to make some nice pics  
Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Unfortunately there was no bathroom, you had to exit, and go downstairs to the basement level, where there was a pay bathroom

No bathroom in the lounge? Never seen that myself although I haven't visited many lounges myself yet..

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The tray was presented, and hot rolls offered.

looks quite OK

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
After hearing horror stories about the queues

I was also a bit worried after hearing those stories when I passed through LHR 2 weeks ago, but was also lucky I guess  

cheers,
Brendan // adamspotter
 
signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
Joined: Tue Oct 30, 2007 5:18 pm

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Tue Jun 26, 2012 7:06 pm

Hi Brendan,

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 41):
Nice report on the BER meet, too bad I couldn't make it myself.

Thanks. Next time maybe  
Quoting adamspotter (Reply 41):
Such a shame that your camera broke but you still managed to make some nice pics

I know, it is being fixed under warranty. All pictures courtesy of my former HTC Desire.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 41):
No bathroom in the lounge? Never seen that myself although I haven't visited many lounges myself yet..

It was only my 4th lounge visit, and all of the other 3 had facilities.

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 41):
I was also a bit worried after hearing those stories when I passed through LHR 2 weeks ago, but was also lucky I guess

I guess they resolved the issues  

Thanks

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI
 
gabrielchew
Posts: 3726
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 5:43 am

RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Thu Jul 12, 2012 11:20 am

Nice report Robin! My first trip to Berlin in 2006 was also easyJet LTN-SXF, although it was a 737 back then.

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
I pulled into the car park at Luton Airport Parkway station, which only charges £2 per day on weekends, a bit more in the week (probably the cheapest parking near the airport) and walked to the shuttle bus stop. The bus cost is £1.50 single, £2.50 return.

Cheap parking, but that bus is such a rip off for such a short journey

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The bar area, however, was well stocked. A shame as I'd be driving later and I had my one beer with the guys downstairs.

Awh, I'm sure you could have had a small champagne...you weren't driving for hours!

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
Unfortunately there was no bathroom, you had to exit, and go downstairs to the basement level, where there was a pay bathroom.

That's pretty poor getting C pax to pay for the toilet

Quoting signol (Thread starter):
The tray was presented, and hot rolls offered. Following the steward, a stewardess offered drinks - I reluctantly decided not to go for champagne, but took cranberry juice instead. I expected some kind of desert offering as well, but there was nothing, and no further service offering during the flight.

Shame you hit "afternoon tea" time...they should always have some hot food, but apparently this "isn't what the customer wants"! Still for the meal looks tasty.
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signol
Topic Author
Posts: 2652
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RE: To BER Or Not To BER, That Is The Question

Sat Jul 14, 2012 9:28 pm

Thanks for the reply Gabriel!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 43):
Nice report Robin!

Thanks!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 43):
Cheap parking, but that bus is such a rip off for such a short journey

I thought about walking, but time, and the maze of dual carriageways put me off.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 43):
Awh, I'm sure you could have had a small champagne...you weren't driving for hours!

I suppose I could have   But I do have a personal rule of only one drink before driving, however long I wait to get behind the wheel.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 43):
Shame you hit "afternoon tea" time...they should always have some hot food, but apparently this "isn't what the customer wants"! Still for the meal looks tasty.

True. It was a nice meal, though could have done with a desert of some kind.

Thanks

signol
Flights booked: NWI-AMS-JNB-DUR, JNB-AMS-NWI

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