My mum was gonna complete Half a century on this planet in November 2012, so when she said she wanted to be in the holy city of Amritsar , it was fairly obvious where me and my parents were gonna be on the 9th of November, 2012
At the time of booking ATQ was connected domestically only with DEL, it was one of those airports that had more International way points than domestic
I checked the fares and booked Air India via Delhi to and Fro for my parents for around 10K INR,
As for myself i wanted to utilise some miles with Jet Airways as they had a 20% redemption discount promotion going,
The flight similarly timed to my parents was the direct [same plane] Jet Konnect service via Delhi, which was good enough for me as it got there 20 mins before my parents, which would mean we could go to the hotel together.
For my return i was going to book my self on the same AI flight with my parents but just then Spice Jet announced services from DEL to ATQ on their Q400s, having never flown a Q400,
I checked connections to BOM, and boy was it screwed up , The flight left early morning had a 3 hr transit in DEL, and was 600 INR more than the AI flight, which left conveniently in the afternoon , was full service , And had A 321, 77W ,[though i had done several times]
But then again logic and us aviation geeks dont go hand in hand, much to the disappointment of my parents i booked the Spice Jet flight just to log in my first Q jet
So my flights looked like this
Jet Konnect 737-800 via DEL
Spicejet Q400, 737-800 via DEL
Parents were on Air India 3 X 321, 1 x 77W
A few days before my flight , i got an email from Jet Airways wrt my flight, saying that it has now shifted from a Jet Konnect flight to a Jet Airways full service flight
This gave me the opportunity to call up Jet and avail of the Mileage upgrade offer which allows me to upgrade on a redemtion booking for a nominal cost
I was waitlisted for that flight
Over the days i kept following up on the same but continued to be Wait Listed,
Also Jet blocks your PNR if there is a slight change in your flight, and you have to personally call them up to unblock it, this is a major nuisance and has happened and continues to happen till today, it does not even let you access your "Manage Booking " section let alone Web check in.
Usually for such an early morning departure i have taken AI/IT which operate out of terminal 1A and given that they are only 2 airlines there have never been serpentine lines.
However for my departure from terminal 1B , i was in for quite a shock, there were long lines and took me over 15 mins just to enter the terminal.
Since my upgrade was waitlisted i had not been allowed to web check in, when my turn came to check in i was literally praying for an upgrade as i had found out the flight was full in Y, which would mean i would probably be stuck with a middle seat, and no one wants to be stuck in a middle seat of a full flight
The check in Lady acknowledged my Upgrade request and it came through much to my relief., I asked her to give me a window seat and went to a "payment counter" to pay the nominal upgrade cost, and came back to show her the check in reciept and recieve my boarding card.
There were the usual commotions of passengers missing their flights while waiting in the long queue
I quickly made my way to the security check as there was barely anytime left for boarding to begin,
All went well and a good 20 mins after Scheduled Boarding time they announced boarding amongst the chaos, which meant it was fairly obvious my flight was going to be late
As many J and Y class pax as possible were packed like sardine cans into the bus, and it was a 15 min ride to the international ramp where our aircraft was parked,with some interesting views on the way
Jet Airways 9W 305, BOM-DEL
AIRCRAFT ,VT-JBE, 737-800W
Photo © Jens Breuer
As i stepped out of the bus on the tarmac , it was a nice line up of 5 Jet Airways 737-800s which had done overnight duty to the middle east & SE Asia.
I stepped on board and on noticing my boarding was welcomed with an even broader smile from the chief purser, and shown my seat.
I made myself comfortable on the seat as other passengers continued to board
A crew member came offering me a wet towel and a refreshment, and later handed me the menu for the BOM-DEL sector of my flight
I texted the flight details to our resident Jet Airways Expert, who told me that the aircraft had just gotten in from KWI,
As bus after bus came i noticed quite a few pax with UA/AC/LH boarding cards, Just as i suspected the Captain came onto the PA announcing a slight delay as they were waiting for connecting passengers
I looked out of the window and saw my parents 321 taxi, i was supposed to reach a good 20 mins before them but i guess that wont be happening today
Soon the entire 16J section of the aircraft got filled up, and it seemed i was the only pax in J going straight to ATQ, rest all would be getting of at DEL
45 mins post SDT we bagan puchback,
Some runway views including an EK 77W that went tech
We aligned ourselves with Runway 27 at BOM and began our roll towards DEL,
Once we reached crusing altitude the crew quickly began with our meal service, as it was barely a 2 hour flight and they had to cater to 160 pax,
I had chosen the "Tomato and Pepper Frittata" ,
Meal service commenced
The food was presented nicely but the taste was ok, i mean there was just the burger patty, no bread along with it and the Frittata was a bit rubbery,
Croissants and choice of bakery items were offered along with the meal and choice of tea coffee or juices
Once plates were taken i realised one thing that Jet Airways have stopped showing IFE on domestic flights (as per the crew) , which is really unfortunate, as the aircraft is already equipped with PTVs including Y class and pre loaded with content , so its just the matter of switching it on
And its not that were saving costs because the display for the entire Y cabin was switched on shwoing "Jet Screen",
The least they could do is atleast show the Sky Map
I slept for the remainder of the flight, and awoke just while we were on approach on DELs RW 28
We docked at the gate about 40 mins later than schedule, i was the only pax from J class that stayed for the onward journey, i spoke with crew who told me there are 72 Y +1J (Me) pax staying onwards for the journey to ATQ,
The chief pursuer who by then had become quite chatty with me as i had made her aware of my aviaition interest, told me that they would change cabin crew for this sector and the Bombay based crew was going to operate a DEL-BOM flight on another aircraft and a DELHI based crew would takeover the duties of the DEL-ATQ sector,
She said goodbye to me and left with the cabin crew
I called up my parents to tell them i had just landed they informed me that they had already boarded their next flight and were seated.
Ground crew came in for cleaning the aircraft and verified everybodies cabin bags
Also the captain requested for 1400 odd liters of additional fuel
Meanwhile my parents called me to tell me that they had began taxiing ,
The new cabin crew made their way on board and they soon announced Boarding for Delhi based passengers,
The Delhi based crew were not at all as pleasant as the BOM based crew and there were quite a few instances which i will mention during my flight to highlight their inadequacy
As the aircraft began filling up with passengers, a wet towel along with a refreshing glass of coconut water was offered to J class passengers.
Then i was given a menu
I found the dish choices a bit odd for the morning hour of the flight but decided on the Sandwich, ,
When one of the cabin crew members came to take my order ,
i told her ill have the " Chicken Sandwich" , she gave me a blank look and told me" thats not on the menu,"
i Pointed at it and asked then "What do you call this"
She realized she had given me the wrong menu for the sector and without any apology just snatched it from my hand and got me the correct menu, avoiding eye contact with me during the whole process and straight away asked me "What will it be",
I told her "Please, give me a moment"
She just huffed and went to the next passenger
The correct menu,
Since i was going to go to Punjab the last item did not make sense as i would prefer eating them there, and an omelette is quite common so by process of elimination i settled on the South Indian breakfast option
The pilots [same as BOM-DEL sector] came on the PA, and said" we shall be beginning push back shortly and apologise for the delay which was due to the late arrival of the aircraft from Mumbai"..........yeah right !!!!!!!!!,
Flight loads seemed to be Full in Y with 5 J.,[One of those J passengers was small time Bollywood celebrity Divya Dutta]
Soon we pushed back for Taxii
JET AIRWAYS, 9W 305 DEL-ATQ
AIRCRAFT, VT-JBE, 737-800W
Photo © Jens Breuer
Including a graveyard of KingFisher Airbuses
We took off from RW 28 and soared into the DEL skies,
The moment the seat belt sign was switched of the crew began preparing the cabin for the meal service, as it is quite a short flight
A crew member came to my table and set it up with mat which barely covered the table, a few minutes later when she was getting my meal tray she realised she had laid my table with a Hand Napkin instead, again no eye contact or any communication , just took the napkin and replaced it with the table cloth
The upma and Idli was nice, but the dosa was better left alone
Apart from the careless nature of the crew members it was quite an uneventful flight
Being a short flight, it was soon time for us to land at ATQ
While landing some of the Holy Places and sights visible at ATQ
We had a decent landing on RW 34, and docked at an aerobridge overall an Hour behind schedule next to this
On the other side of us i could see an Air India 321 docked at the adjacent aerobridge signifying that my parents had already landed.
I called my parents and told them that i have landed, and waited for the cabin crew to give us the go ahead to de plane
There was no goodbye or smile just a simple "You can go now", but honestly given the fact that i was well aware of their nature by now it did not bother me
I exited and met my parents and we took a taxi to our hotel in Amritsar
Food [Bombay] 7/10
Food [Delhi] 7/10
Cabin Crew [Bombay] 8/10
Cabin Crew [Delhi] 3/10
Well ,my Domestic J class experience on Jet Airways was a lot better than i expected, I was glad that i got the International Short Haul Product configured Aircraft, because its something that one would get if you fly on Jet Airways 737 Network from JED to BKK , only difference being that they would maybe switch on the IFE,
however their services do need some fine tuning especially the snooty nature of the Delhi based crew it is what keeps them at the levels of an Option carrier rather than a Preferred Carrier
My Other Trip Reports
Is This The "New Air India?" BOM-JFK On The 772LR (by Karan69 Jul 27 2009 in Trip Reports)
GF Air F Class Extravaganza BOM-LHR-MNL-BOM [Pics] (by Karan69 Apr 14 2007 in Trip Reports)
Aero India 2007 The Indian LCC Way-Go Air (by Karan69 Aug 2 2007 in Trip Reports)
BOM-ATQ-BOM Via DEL IC/9W 737-900/Trains/Fog[Pics] (by Karan69 Dec 24 2006 in Trip Reports)
CX:A Bit Dissapointed BOM-BKK-BOM 773[56K Pics] (by Karan69 Aug 9 2006 in Trip Reports)
SQ Adventure BOM-SIN-HKG-BOM[64 56k Friendly Pics] (by Karan69 Jul 13 2006 in Trip Reports)
Jet Airways 343/AI 310 Buss Class, Security? [48 Pics] (by Karan69 Aug 1 2005 in Trip Reports)
Indian Airlines/Air Sahara BOM-DEL-BOM-many Pics (by Karan69 Nov 23 2004 in Trip Reports)