My grade at school is around 110 students and teachers, and I knew right away that there were going to be multiple flights for the trip. Sure enough, I was right and when the flights for 10th Grade came up on the school website I saw there were two flight pairs. One included TAM A320s both ways, and the other G3 738 outbound and TAM A321 for the return. I didn’t get to choose, people were randomly assigned so I prayed for the latter, and sure enough, god answered my prayers. In fact, I was super lucky, out of 110 people I was one of the only 23 that made the G3/JJ flight itinerary. I was super excited for the G3 738 as I have recently fallen in love with the Boeing Sky Interior and I was hoping that our a/c would have it. I also liked to have a little variation in my flights…
We left our school for GRU at about 7:45 in the morning, and we were seeing signs of aviation at around 9:30 after an hour and 45 minutes on a bus.
Soon we arrived at the terminal, got off the bus and retrieved our luggage.
We checked in at area “C” in GRU
Gol check in counters, sorry for the blurry pictures here.
After checking in and being told to meet at the security checkpoint at 11:15am, me and a few friends headed off to find a seat with a view. LA A320
In the background you can see an AA 772, a DL 764 and another tail which I believe is the US 762 from CLT.
Later the DL 764 left for the parking ramps and an AA 77W took its place.
Getting ready to go through security:
Security was a breeze as usual, and after checking the departure boards I headed off to gate 26 where our flight was scheduled to depart.
On the way I saw the AA 77W, and I have to say she looks beautiful.
Our 738, PR-GUP had just arrived when I got there.
The line started before the jetway had attached to the airplane.
Gol Airlines (G3) Flight 1164
São Paulo - Guarulhos (GRU) to Salvador Dep. Luís Eduardo Magalhães (SSA)
Boeing Sky Interior Fitted
September 16th, 2013
Scheduled Departure: 12:10pm
Actual Departure: 12:12pm
Scheduled Arrival: 2:35pm
Actual Arrival: 2:14pm
Flight Time: 2hrs 2min
Photo © AirSpeed
Photo © Yan David
Boarding started out of gate 26 at 11:45ish
Our neighbor, PR-GGO sits while she gets ready for her next mission.
Tail and reg check
When I stepped aboard, I immediately saw the little Boeing Sky Interior control screen on the bulkhead, how I do love it! IMHO Boeing interiors are nicer than those from other manufacturers hands down.
Special liveried Gol 738 sans winglets getting ready to leave
Boarding's wrapping up:
AC 763 getting towed (or pushed) over to the parking area where she’ll wait before leaving for YYZ in the evening.
Boarding complete and bins are being shut
Pushback commenced at 12:12pm, two minutes behind schedule.
Here you can see the equipment that is being used to construct the new international terminal for the 2016 Olympics.
All lined up on the taxiway now
Flaps for departure set. I like the way 737 flaps look.
Yes the Boeing Sky Interior does look nice!
After leaving the ramp, notice the AM 772 and the AZ 772 waiting patiently for their missions, as well as the AA 777s in the background.
TAM vs. Gol ramps:
Cabin while taxiing
As per the usual routine, we took off on runway 9L and rocketed east out of Sao Paulo. Link to the takeoff video can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gVnLMKc1B-g
We finally left the grey skies of Sao Paulo
The cabin service started remarkably quick actually. I didn't get anything because I wasn't hungry, although I should mention that everything had to be paid for. Not even a free drink on a 2hr segment...
Here was the menu:
And the safety instructions card:
Of course I didn't forget the obligatory legroom shot. Legroom was great actually for the two hour flight and I'm 6 feet tall (183cm)
Cabin during cruise. The mood lighting stayed at the "blue" setting the entire flight.
After we commenced our decent, we found quickly found ourselves over the Atlantic.
Cabin during decent
We needed a little help getting down the last couple thousand feet
The city of Salvador started to come into view
Well hello there
Flaps started to come out when we reached land
Speedbrakes still up
Itaipava Arena Fonte Nova stadium for the 2014 World Cup
Starting the turn for finals
All lined up
Gotta take the landing video for YouTube. This video can be found here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FK3_oLI9QKU
And take pictures for a.net as well...
Taxiing off the runway. The landing was fine, I find that most 737 landings are never that great. Perhaps it's a function of the wing characteristics?
Flaps back up
We made our way over to the single building that makes up Salvador's airport.
AV A320 from São Paulo. I will miss the old AV livery once it's gone.
Azul Embraer 190 also from São Paulo
We pulled into the gate at 2:14pm, 21 minutes ahead of schedule
The typical swarm of people the moment the seat-belt sign goes off
We had pulled into the gate at 2:14 and the door didn't open until 2:26...
Still deplaning. Note the first officer who was dead-heading.
We deplaned via air-stairs and bus, although there was in fact a jetway there. It must have been broken.
Inside the bus, we drove over to the terminal baggage claim area.
This is the TAM A320 that my classmates flew up on a few hours before.
After retrieving our luggage we went outside and got on our bus, and started our vacation in Bahia
Part 2 about the return flight is continued below