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newbief1yer
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Joined: Thu Dec 06, 2012 9:35 pm

Weekend trip on Austrian to Vienna - A321-100

Fri Jun 08, 2018 8:55 pm

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Video Report

Austrian - OS456 - London to Vienna - A321-100

Austrian - OS457 - Vienna to London Heathrow - A321-100

Background

Hello A'netters. It was the second May bank holiday and we needed to go somewhere. Looking at the map of Europe and a glaring omission in our travels was Austria!

An hour later we had our travel booked (car rental, hotel, Airport Parking and most importantly the flights). We would be traveling on Austrian Airlines (a First for me, yaay!) and was looking forward to this trip.

The website was simple enough to use and very efficient. While booking, the website also enables you to see a 360 degree view of the cabin, and in our case, of the Airbus 321-200. (Later realized it was A321-100, so a first for me!)

Flight was reasonably priced for a bank holiday. All in it was £280 for the 2 of us, including 1 check in baggage.

Austrian Airlines - OS 456
Route: LHR - VIE
Flight Reg:OE-LBB; Delivered to Austrian in Feb 1996; one of the few remaining A321-100; Named Pinzgau
Aircraft Type: Airbus 321-100
Seat: 27F
Flight time: 19:25 - 22:45 (20:02 - 22:52)
Actual flight time: 1Hr 50 min
Distance: 795 Miles
Load: 100% load (Overbooked)
25 May 2018
Booking details: Austrian.com @ £280 for 2 return tickets including 1 checked in luggage.
My Log book: 1st Flight on Austrian/ 1st flight on Airbus 321-100/ 164th Total overall flight


Day before flight, online check in was a bit finnicky. It did not allow us to check in together since we were on separate booking PNR although the check in allows you to add another booking reference upon OCI. However, individually checked in and managed to get seats next to each other.

A bit worrying was the on-time performance of this flight. Seems to be delayed every day, which could cause an issue in me collecting my rental car, which closes at mid night. #Firstworldproblems!

Day of the flight I was tracking the aircraft coming in like a hawk and it seemed to be on time. Drive to the airport was quick'ish for a bank holiday Friday.

But it took almost 30 minutes from the car park (long stay car park) to reach the terminal building.

Nevertheless reached the airport by 1750. Self-check in didn't work But the gate agent was quick and checked in in 2 min.

At the Queen's terminal
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Not too busy for a Bank holiday Friday
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Baggage drop and check in desks
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Heading to departures
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Security was fairly decent for a busy Friday. Around 10 minutes.
Terminal 2, airside, was a bit busy at this time.

Airside
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Plane spotting at LHR T2
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My first spotting of a Boeing 737 Max 8
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Flight seems to be on time
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We were boarding from the satellite terminal and it's a fairly long walk. Takes around 10 minutes to reach our gates.

At the time of boarding an announcement was made that the flight was over booked and they needed volunteers to give up their seats for a flight the same time the next day. Hotel accommodation, 3 meals and a 250 euro compensation was offered. A generous offer, is it? An Austrian in the queue said that this was common with Austrian airlines.

Heading to our gates
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Long walk to the satellite terminals B
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Finally..
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Waiting to take off to Haneda - ANA B777-300ER
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There is our ride - A 22 year old Airbus A321-100
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Boarding was a mess. However we were towards the first in the queue and hence quick to board.

A bit chaotic during boarding. Oh Hello!
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First impressions

Looked very good for the age. Shows the quality of maintenance done by Austrian. Is it done by Lufthansa?
But surprisingly my wife guessed the age of the aircraft as 22 years!!! What are the chances. It didn't look that old. I could feel the aircraft sighing. :)

Not a big fan of these slim line Recaro seats but it seems to be the industry standard these days. The business class looked extremely unimpressive and lackluster.

Once again the flight seemed to be delayed as boarding took a while for it to be fully boarded.

First impressions of the cabin
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Row 27
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View from our row
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Neighbours at Heathrow
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Decent leg space
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Reading material on board
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Swiss CS300 waiting to taxi while we were at the gates
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An Ethiopian A350 waiting to taxi while we were at the gates
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Hey! That's ours.! better put that back...
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Boarding complete by 1940. But then they had to search for the luggage for the passengers who volunteered to stay back. Urgh! Why can't they do this at check in? Why at the boarding gates? Poor show thus far from Austrian.

Captain from the flight deck apologized for the delay. But blamed the ATC for traffic at the airport. And not because of their mismanagement. Boooo.

1 Hour and 40 minutes flying time announced.

Disembarked from the gates at 1950.

Advantage of being at terminal 2 and taking off from 27L meant that we were airborne in 12 minutes after disembarking. That's good. We should make it in time for my car rental after all.

Taxiing
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Good announcements from the flight deck. Informing us of the altitude, speed and confirmed it should be a turbulent free flight. Also said he would go as fast as possible to make up for lost time. Airbus A321 to Concorde -> Hold my beer!

Retro Cool - Air Malta Retro
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Take off
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Beast!
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Bye for now..
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Once we reached cruising altitude snacks and drinks were served. They had a very good Austrian beer and wine. Tried them both.

An hour and a bit later it was time to land.

Crew on this flight were alright. Did what they had to do in the most efficient manner. There was an older lady who was very courteous. She explained that the wine was from a region in Austria which I didn't get but tasted really good.

Internet (Paid for) was available after take off
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View of cabin after take off
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Snacks and drinks on board
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Rest of the flight was uneventful in a good way and thankfully we landed on time.

I was out of the airport in 15 minutes and headed to the car rental office which is another 10 minutes' walk from the arrivals.

Above Vienna
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Neighbours at Vienna
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Vienna Airport
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Cool Art work whilst walking towards the baggage collection
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Exiting the airport
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Long walk towards to the car rental area
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Sightseeing around Vienna

Our ride for the trip - 2018 VW Polo; Excellent ride and I am beginning to question do you even need a Golf?
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Winter Palace
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Anyone missing any parts from an old Toyota Corolla?
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View from our hotel
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Musikverien
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Lost in Krems
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Hinterhaus, Spitz
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Danube region over Spitz
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Melk Stift
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Three days later it was time to get back…

Austrian Airlines - OS 457
Route: VIE - LHR
Flight Reg:OE-LBA; Delivered to Austrian in Dec 1995; one of the few remaining A321-100; Named Salzkammergut
Aircraft Type: Airbus 321-100
Seat: 21A
Flight time: 20:05 - 21:30 (20:51 - 21:47)
Actual flight time: 1 Hr 56 Min
Distance: 795 Miles
Load: 100%; Overbooked.
28 May 2018
My Log book: 2nd Flight on Austrian/ 2nd flight on Airbus 321-100/ 165th Total overall flight


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Vienna Airport Terminal 3
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Day before flight online check in worked well.
On the day we reached the airport with 2 hours and 30 minutes to spare. Handed back the rental car and headed to the departures.

It was a bit busy at this time.

Baggage drop off/Check-in desks
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Self-check in
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At the baggage drop asked if the flight was full to see if I could check my hand luggage in too, to which they duly obliged. Result.

Security was a bit slow given the peak time at the airport. Nevertheless we were at the main air side area in 15 minutes.

Heading towards security after baggage drop
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Long queue for security
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Plane spotting whilst in the queue
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Airside
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Had a quick bite at Jamie's (avoid the focaccia bread. It was super dry) and then proceeded towards gate G. Passport check before the gates.

Jamie's Italian taken over this part of the Airport. Decent offering except the Focaccia which was a dried as a cookie
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Near Gates G
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Plane spotting at VIE
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Heading back to DEL shortly
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A rare aircraft - A 32 year old WDL Aviation BAe 146 / Avro RJ, now leased to EasyJet
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Another cool airline - A 12 year old People s Viennaline ERJ 170
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At our gates it looked packed and similar to our onward flight to Vienna the gate crew asked for volunteers for an early morning flight the next day. Hotel, food and EUR 250 compensation was offered. We thought about it and gave our names for it. They said they would not guarantee but would consider if needed.

At our gates
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Our ride to London Heathrow - OE-LBA; the first of the Austrian A321-100
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Busy at the gates, once again overbooked!
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Boarding commenced and once again a bit chaotic. Waited until 2005 and then we were told we could board the flight. I think they were waiting for one last passenger from a connecting flight from Belgrade. Once that was complete all bets were off. Anyone else missing the flight would've missed it.

After all the drama, finally boarded. View from our seat
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Due to all these delays, it was obvious that we would be delayed. Scanning through few Austrian airlines flight on flight radar they all seem to be either an Amber or red in terms of flight timing. I'm intrigued to see their on time performance I'm sure it's one of the worst offenders in Europe.

During plane spotting at Vienna, why do certain Austrian airlines aircraft's have blue cowling and some have white? Are they in the middle of a brand refresh or are these aircraft's part of a certain group or anything else?

As predicted the flight departed from the gates 30 minutes behind schedule.

Reason for delayed departure was due to congestion at Vienna. When will Austrian actually say it was due to their overbooking which meant late boarding of passengers?

We finally disembarked around 30 minutes after the scheduled departure time and we were airborne fairly quick.

The rest of the flight was identical to the onward journey so will not elaborate too much but will let the rest of my picture do the talking.

Nothing's changed here
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Bye Bye Vienna
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Similar Food and Beverage offering
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Hello London
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Back home
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Baggage collection
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Exit
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Verdict

Overall Austrian was just alright, I was perhaps expecting a bit more. I do like that they still serve free drinks on-board, but I would also not have minded a paid for food service. For a two hour flight I would've liked a few more options for food.

Overbooking seems to be the norm, which in turn causes delays. We did not experience any severe delays but I think that is on area where Austrian do not fare well.

Overall it was just above average and I would like to try their long haul flights.

Hope you liked this edition of my report. My next one should be an interesting one taking me to the nomadic region of Central Asia in Kyrgyzstan. Until then, keep flying and let the trip reports flow.

Thanks and Adios!
 
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newbief1yer
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Posts: 561
Joined: Thu Dec 06, 2012 9:35 pm

Re: Weekend trip on Austrian to Vienna - A321-100

Fri Jun 08, 2018 8:56 pm

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FlightLevel360
Posts: 194
Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2017 2:26 pm

Re: Weekend trip on Austrian to Vienna - A321-100

Sun Jun 10, 2018 1:42 am

These seats do not seem to have much padding. How comfortable did you find them?

Great detailed report by the way! I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
 
N415XJ
Posts: 814
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2014 4:04 pm

Re: Weekend trip on Austrian to Vienna - A321-100

Sun Jun 10, 2018 3:47 am

Thanks for the report!

About the colors of the engines, Austrian is in the middle of a rebranding. Beyond the engines you'll notice other subtle changes.

They went from this livery:
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To this livery:
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To this livery
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All in the span of a year or so. Then, they finally introduced this one only a few weeks ago
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As such, you'll probably be seeing Austrian planes in a bunch of different liveries for the next couple of months at least.
 
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newbief1yer
Topic Author
Posts: 561
Joined: Thu Dec 06, 2012 9:35 pm

Re: Weekend trip on Austrian to Vienna - A321-100

Sun Jun 10, 2018 6:23 am

Thanks FlightLevel360. Yeah, these are the typical Recaro slim line seats that more and more airline operators are heading in the direction towards. Saves space and allows to cram even more seats. Comfort wise they seem acceptable for a 2 hour flight.

Oh Wow! Thanks a lot for the detailed info N415XJ. This makes sense, or rather no sense! Wonder who their parent company is? **Cough** Lufthansa** Cough**..

:)
 
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newbief1yer
Topic Author
Posts: 561
Joined: Thu Dec 06, 2012 9:35 pm

Re: Weekend trip on Austrian to Vienna - A321-100

Sun Jun 10, 2018 8:20 pm

Oh wow!! Would like to see a trip report on that one. :)
 
lychemsa
Posts: 1805
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2009 8:39 pm

Re: Weekend trip on Austrian to Vienna - A321-100

Sun Jun 10, 2018 8:23 pm

Flew the same route on Austrian in 1972 on a DC-9. We got a cold meal in those days.

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