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infodesk
Topic Author
Posts: 1462
Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 11:06 pm

Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 11:55 am

Dear readers,

Thanks for clicking on my latest trip report, it’s been a while since the last one! Even though it’s now a year since I did this trip, I still hope you’ll enjoy reading about it.

Shortly before Christmas 2013, Monarch announced that they would be organising a farewell flight between London Gatwick-Birmingham for their last remaining A300. It was possible for book tickets online for a short time, but due to various problems it was then phone only. As I’d never flown on Monarch or an A300, I sacrificed most of my lunchbreak to call the hotline and after a good 15 minutes got through and was able to book.

So, the difficult part was done, or so I thought. The mid-afternoon departure of the Monarch flight meant a daytrip was quite easy, but I hadn’t stopped to think that it was school holidays and all the flights were expensive. Flying back from Birmingham was easy enough, I burned some LX miles and booked the evening flight into ZRH. However, getting to London was trickier than I thought. After much debating and comparing, the most reasonably priced option was as an open jaw flying MAN-ZRH in January in combination with another trip, then ZRH-FRA-LHR. National Express would fill the gap and connect LHR-LGW. No sooner had I hit the “book” button than I slowly began to regret the tight 45 minute connection in Frankfurt. Despite there being numerous connections onto LHR, I was worried about missing this special flight out of Gatwick.

Well Lufthansa came to my rescue. My ZRH-FRA flight was put back by 10 minutes, meaning my connection is FRA was no longer possible and I was rebooked onto a later flight. As this didn’t suit me, I went about contacting LH. I got nowhere at the Star Alliance ticket desk at ZRH, they were completely unhelpful, so the call centre it was. After a fairly lengthy discussion, I was rebooked onto the direct ZRH-LHR Swiss service, which had been considerably more expensive at the time of booking.

OLCI wasn’t possible for Monarch, everyone had assigned seats anyway. The LX flight to LHR worked fine, but the BHX-ZRH didn’t work, this seems to be the norm with mileage tickets and not-so friendly guy at the Swiss helpdesk couldn’t really offer any assistance either.

Sunday 13th April

A long day today and an early start was necessary. Well, my car doesn’t object, no different to going to work really! On such a special trip it’s nice to have like-minded company, isn’t it? Fellow A.netter Flieger67 would join me today and our meeting point is the multi-story car park.

After stocking up on the usual purchases from the airport bakery it’s through security and passport control on to gate D34


ZRH-LHR
LX316
HB-IOD A320
Seat 29E
STD 07:10 / ATD 07:23
STA 08:00/ ATA 07:53
My 65th flight on the A320 & 1st on this aircraft


Boarding starts ontime at 06:45
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch002.jpg

HB-IJO, a new A320 for me

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch003.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch005.jpg



Pushback is at 07:15 and take off just a few minutes later from runway 28. Flying time will be 1h25.

Swiss everywhere

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch006.jpg




Leaving Zurich





Above the clouds


Today’s flight to London is virtually full, we are lucky enough to have an empty seat on the last row.

The crossaints that Swiss serve on the early morning flights are not at all to my liking so I decline and just have a drink, or two.
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch018.jpg

The sun is out in London and we have some super views on approach

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch019.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch021.jpg



http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch024.jpg



So English, isn’t it?

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch025.jpg

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch027.jpg



We land early, just before 8am and have a relatively short taxi to our gate

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch028.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch029.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch030.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch031.jpg



An exotic neighbour…or two

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch032.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch033.jpg



Terminal 1 is showing its age and the toilets aren’t the most modern. Still, immigration is pretty speedy thanks to the E-Gates, well it is for some people, the machine decides to think about letting me enter the country for a while!

One through, we head straight to the bus station. There were various options of how to transfer to Gatwick, but we settled on National Express. As it was a Sunday, the chances of the roads being congested were slim. The ticket was purchased online for £26 and journey time was scheduled to be just over an hour. It was no problem to take an earlier bus than booked.
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch034.jpg

At Gatwick South it’s busy as the school holidays have just begun

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch035.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch036.jpg



There’s plenty of time to spare at Gatwick and it’s a picture book spring day, so after buying a cup of tea from Costa we decide to soak up the sun outside at the bus stop. Well, it made for great people watching! After that, a quick visit to M&S is necessary. I have to take the opportunity of stocking up on some essentials, don’t I?

Check-in for the flight was at dedicated desks, separate from the regular Monarch ones. All passengers were under strict instructions not to use OLCI. I didn’t mind, it meant a nice proper boarding pass.

Check-in
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch037.jpg

Security was pretty quick despite the large number of holidaymakers out and about today

Departures


Despite the fact it’s a domestic flight, I’m able to stock up on some duty free (which wouldn’t be possible in Switzerland).
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch041.jpg

Looks quite exotic, doesn’t it? A domestic flight to Birmingham on Monarch

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch042.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch043.jpg



Unlucky for some?
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch044.jpg

Once at gate 13 boarding is still a long way off, but it gives us a chance to catch up with fellow A.netters ba319-131, Brewox and MEA-707, who are also booked on this special flight.

The first glimpse of our chariot which arrived from Friedrichshafen. Actually, why didn’t I think of flying into London that way?!

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch045.jpg



"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
infodesk
Topic Author
Posts: 1462
Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 11:06 pm

RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 11:59 am

LGW-BHX
ZB300
G-OJMR A300-600
Seat 42E
STD 14:40 / ATD 15:25
STA 15:40 / ATA 16:32
My 1st flight on the A300 and 1st on this aircraft


Boarding finally started at 14:30 and despite the delay, it’s as relaxed as you could imagine. Lots of photo opportunities and nobody to spoil the fun (ok, with the exception of being told not to stand under the wing!).
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch048.jpg

Under the wing, well, as close as possible

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch049.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch056.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch058.jpg

Up the stairs


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch061.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch062.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch063.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch064.jpg



We’re among the last to board (why change a habit of a lifetime?) and after a warm welcome make our way towards to back of the plane, second to last row. No window seats today, this time it’s all about the experience and not the views.

In charge of today’s flight isCpt. Martin Pound, Monarch’s chief & most senior pilot and flying time will be around an hour. From Heathrow we’ll head up to Manchester for a special fly past and then back down towards Birmingham.

Onboard
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch065.jpg

Safety card


Legroom
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch067.jpg

Safety demo. Note everyone is watching – a rare sight!
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch068.jpg

Take off is an hour behind schedule. Once the seatbelt sign is been switched off, the crew start with the service. Normally it’s BOB on Monarch, not today though. The crew’s announcement that champagne is free earns a round of applause.

Champagne for all
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch069.jpg¨
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch070.jpg

Crew busy at work
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch073.jpg


Galley




Spring in England
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch075.jpg

Captain Pound passes through the cabin and personally hands everyone a certificate commemorating today’s special flight as well as a brand new safety card.

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch080.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch081.jpg






Over the Pennines


It had been announced a few days before the event that the flight would perform a low level flypast at MAN. Super idea but I’m now a little sad not to have a window seat as MAN is the airport I’ve flown in and out of most in my life. Still, you can’t win them all. Just the experience, feeling the aircraft descend to 1000ft to then climb again, is very special.

Getting ready for the flypast
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch085.jpg

Shortly after the big event, the crew prepare the cabin for landing

Arrival at BHX, after an hour in the air and with a delay of an hour


Once we land at Birmingham, the purser makes a final speech. She says what a joy it was to fly on the A300 and how sadly it will be missed. The emotion is her voice is quite obvious and it eventually gets the better of her. She finishes her speech in tears and it’s a very moving moment.

And so a special & memorable flight come to an end. Some passengers have tight connections due to the delay and they de-board first. The ground staff are happy for us all to enjoy the moment and lots of pictures of this special aircraft

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch091.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch092.jpg



http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch096.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch097.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch098.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch103.jpg




A classic shot
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch099.jpg

Another under the wing


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch104.jpg



Before long we decide it’s time to hop on the bus and head to the terminal. Once in arrivals I discover that Birmingham also has a branch of M&S Simply Food. Dangerous indeed, especially in the evening when the staff are reducing all the delicious cakes that are going out of date. Just as well I’m flying Swiss and can sneak a second piece of hand luggage on board…..

We collect the boarding passes from the desk, the old fashioned way.

BHX departures

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch105.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch106.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch107.jpg



Once airside, there was just a little bit of time for some more shopping in Boots & WHS, before heading to the gate.

FIDS


The last plane for today, nice to see a new Fokker for me
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch111.jpg

BHX-ZRH
LX425
HB-JVC, F100, operated by Helvetic
Seat 13F
STD 18:45 / ATD 18:47
STA 21:35 / ATA 21:07
12th flight on the F100 and 1st on this aircraft


Boarding was early, pushback was early and take off on time on the last flight of the day.

Pushback
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch112.jpg

The old livery was so much better!
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch113.jpg

Legroom, exit row


Ready for departure
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch115.jpg
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch116.jpg

Take off

http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch117.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch118.jpg


http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch119.jpg



http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch121.jpg



It’s the first time I’ve sat on the exit row on the Fokker and it’s very comfortable. This evening’s snack is a cheese sandwich
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch122.jpg

The 90 minute flight passes in no time as we reflect on this special day

Sunset
http://i106.photobucket.com/albums/m249/hanval/Monarch/Monarch123.jpg

Landing at ZRH is a whopping 30minutes ahead of schedule on runway 28 after which it’s time to say our goodbyes and rescue our respective cars from the multi-storey carpark.

Verdict:
Booking tickets on this farewell flight was very much a spur of the moment thing, but a great decision. Despite the fact I’d never flown Monarch and have no special connection to the airline, it was quite an emotional experience and one that I’m glad I was able to be a part of.

LX filled the gap nicely with the punctual flights to and from the UK and Lufthansa in fact did me a favour by altering the timing of my FRA-MAN flight as the LX option was much more relaxed.

And of course as always, being able to share such a day out with other like-minded A.netters always makes for an unforgettable trip.

Happy flying
Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
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allrite
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 12:56 pm

What a lovely experience and fantastic that the captain came through the cabin like that. So much fun to be part of something special like a celebrated inaugural or final flight. Thanks for posting it.
I like artificial banana essence!
 
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aerdingus
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 2:20 pm

I wish I could have done this flight!

Cheers for putting this up, the A300 lives on  
A306 A313 A319 A320 A321 A333 A346 A359 ATR42 ATR72 B734 B737 B738 B744 B772 B789 C152 MD80 RJ85 S340
 
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lesfalls
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 3:13 pm

Great TR   . Really lucky if you to be able to catch that flight(it's too far away for me   ). The A300 is a beatiful plane. Anyways thanks for posting and great TR  
Lufthansa: Einfach ein bisschen besser.
 
MVAair
Posts: 298
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 4:09 pm

was this a normally scheduled flight?
 
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Ytraveller
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 6:58 pm

Hi infodesk,

Loved your TR! Sad to see the A300 disappear from the skies... I've never flown on it, but to me it's always looked like a bulky yet comfortable plane.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Swiss everywhere

Is it just me or does that A321 look really long?

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
The sun is out in London and we have some super views on approach

Lucky you! I flew into LHR twice a couple weeks ago, and both times I didn't get those beautiful views (first time it was too cloudy, second time we approached from the west).

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Once we land at Birmingham, the purser makes a final speech. She says what a joy it was to fly on the A300 and how sadly it will be missed. The emotion is her voice is quite obvious and it eventually gets the better of her. She finishes her speech in tears and it’s a very moving moment.

Indeed...  

Thanks for sharing,
- Ytraveller
 
Cipango
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Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 3:55 pm

RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 7:31 pm

I love inaugural and farewell TR's!

Very interesting TR! Well done.
Let's fly! Unless it's on a CRJ 200, then I'll stay down here.
 
ab486
Posts: 179
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun Apr 19, 2015 8:23 pm

Hi Hannah,

A lovely Sunday read on your experience with ZB. Kudos to Monarch for organising this rather special day, looks like you had a great day.


Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Terminal 1 is showing its age and the toilets aren’t the most modern.

Indeed it is, though it will be sad to see it close later on in the year.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Just the experience, feeling the aircraft descend to 1000ft to then climb again, is very special.

That must have been really amazing.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Once in arrivals I discover that Birmingham also has a branch of M&S Simply Food. Dangerous indeed, especially in the evening when the staff are reducing all the delicious cakes that are going out of date.

Haha! I know what you mean. Everytime I go through arrivals @ BHX, I somehow manage to end up in the M&S simply food   .

Nice to fly the F100 on your flight home, as well as the the exit row, too

Thanks for sharing!

Adam
 
frostyj
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Mon Apr 20, 2015 2:19 am

Great trip report...
[url=http://m.maploco.com/details/5f34zxvq][img]http://www.maploco.com/vmap/s/8395334.png[/img][/url]
 
BestWestern
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Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2000 8:46 pm

RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Mon Apr 20, 2015 6:07 am

Never realised that the Monarch A300's were 3-3-3- in economy.
Greetings from Hong Kong.... a subsidiary of China Inc.
 
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sultanils
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Mon Apr 20, 2015 8:46 am

Hey Hannah,

Good to read about your farewell flights on Monarch’s A300. It seemed like a good opportunity to fly this workhorse for the last time prior to her retirement, and this in company of a plane load af aviation enthusiasts. Good to see your rebooking ordeal came out well in the end. I have one going on as we speak with SN and it drives me crazy   

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
I sacrificed most of my lunchbreak to call the hotline

The things we do for our business  I guess your colleagues must be used to this?

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
I slowly began to regret the tight 45 minute connection in Frankfurt.

Oh yes, even I wouldn’t do such tricky stuff at FRA. Schengen to Schengen, no problem however  

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Fellow A.netter Flieger67 would join me today

Of course, your loyal travel companion.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
The crossaints that Swiss serve on the early morning flights are not at all to my liking

Me neither. The best ones I had were on my VLM Airlines flight to GVA a few weeks ago. And hopefully on my HAM flight too this week  

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
this time it’s all about the experience and not the views.

Hmm, I beg to differ   

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Note everyone is watching – a rare sight!

Quite a contrast of the yellow crew uniforms with the dark purple/blue cabin.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
A classic shot

Gone for now...

Sultanils
In thrust we trust.
 
infodesk
Topic Author
Posts: 1462
Joined: Thu May 18, 2006 11:06 pm

RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:12 am

Hi guys & gals,

Thank you so much for your comments, they are very much appreciated!

Allrite,

Quoting allrite (Reply 2):
What a lovely experience and fantastic that the captain came through the cabin like that. So much fun to be part of something special like a celebrated inaugural or final flight. Thanks for posting it.

Thanks for your reply. Yes, it was far more special than I’d ever imagined and the crew were on their best form for the occasion. I was really touched at how the captain came and spoke to us all like that.

Aerdingus,

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 3):
I wish I could have done this flight!
Cheers for putting this up, the A300 lives on

It was a memorable day but nevertheless sad to see the old aircraft go 

Lesfalls

Quoting lesfalls (Reply 4):
Great TR . Really lucky if you to be able to catch that flight(it's too far away for me ). The A300 is a beatiful plane. Anyways thanks for posting and great TR

Shame you couldn’t make it . Glad you enjoyed the report though. Yes, my first and only A300 flight was very memorable.

MVYair

Quoting MVAair (Reply 5):
was this a normally scheduled flight?

No, it was a positioning flight which they then sold tickets on. At first online, but demand was too high so it was only then possible by phone.

Ytraveller,

Quoting Ytraveller (Reply 6):
Loved your TR! Sad to see the A300 disappear from the skies... I've never flown on it, but to me it's always looked like a bulky yet comfortable plane.

Thanks! I’m not sure I’d want to fly longhaul on it but I’m certainly glad I got a chance the log it. Another plane slowly being resigned to the history books…..

Quoting Ytraveller (Reply 6):
Is it just me or does that A321 look really long?

It does indeed. I’m so used to 319/320s that I often forget just how long the 321 is!

Quoting Ytraveller (Reply 6):
Lucky you! I flew into LHR twice a couple weeks ago, and both times I didn't get those beautiful views (first time it was too cloudy, second time we approached from the west).

It does indeed seem to be a matter of luck. Although on a recent flight into LCY the views were even more stunning, I could almost touch the Shard!

Cipango,

Quoting Cipango (Reply 7):
love inaugural and farewell TR's!
Very interesting TR! Well done.

Thanks for leaving your feedback!

Adam,

Quoting ab486 (Reply 8):
A lovely Sunday read on your experience with ZB. Kudos to Monarch for organising this rather special day, looks like you had a great day.

Thank you. It was a super spring day out and Monarch really did a super job.

Quoting ab486 (Reply 8):
Indeed it is, though it will be sad to see it close later on in the year.

Just as well I ticked it off the list whilst I could!

Quoting ab486 (Reply 8):
That must have been really amazing.

A very special feeling for sure

Quoting ab486 (Reply 8):
Haha! I know what you mean. Everytime I go through arrivals @ BHX, I somehow manage to end up in the M&S simply food

So it’s not just my guilty secret! They always have something worth buying  
Quoting ab486 (Reply 8):
Nice to fly the F100 on your flight home, as well as the the exit row, too

I’ll make a point of choosing it again in the future, although the legroom on those Helvetic Fokkers is pretty good whatever the row.

Quoting frostyj (Reply 9):
Great trip report...

Thank you!

Quoting bestwestern (Reply 10):
Never realised that the Monarch A300's were 3-3-3- in economy.

Plus the legroom wouldn't be amazing either for those long flights.

Happy flying
Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
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CrimsonNL
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Mon Apr 20, 2015 1:42 pm

Hey Hannah, nice report  

Great to see you got a last minute opportunity to fly on the old A300 workhorse   I'm sure it was well worth the effort!

Brgds,

Martijn
Always comparing your flown types list with mine
 
CaptainRed
Posts: 784
Joined: Thu Oct 07, 2010 9:22 am

RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Wed Apr 22, 2015 4:44 pm

Hi Hannah,

very enjoyable report, what a good idea to take that farewell flight with the good old A300, great looking plane. I had a couple of flights on this type back in the 90s with the long gone Air Inter of France, that was in the old days when it was still common to get a widebody plane even on domestic flights. Ahh, memories   ...

Anyway good to read that Monarch actually made quite an event for this special occasion with the champaign and with the Captain coming around in the cabin. Just a shame that you weren't at the window especially for the low approach in MAN, but for sure a great experience nevertheless.

CaptainRed
 
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OA260
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Thu Apr 23, 2015 12:30 pm

Hey Hannah  

Great report and welcome back. You have been missed. Hope to see more posted by you.

Really nice to see this on an aircraft which I miss very much. Nice pics of LX and ZRH always a pleasure to see.

Spur of the moment flights are always the best. So a great decision indeed.

Thanks for the report.

Regards

Philip  
 
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ams747757
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Thu Apr 23, 2015 1:45 pm

What a great report! Enjoyed seeing the LX A320 and of course the main attraction, the A300. The Monarch livery is great looking livery for that aircraft too. Always sad to see the old birds go, especially when they still look good! That A300 seemed to hold up well.
 
infodesk
Topic Author
Posts: 1462
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sat Apr 25, 2015 5:46 am

Hi guys,

Great to see your feedback & much appreciated!

Nils,
Sorry, our replies must have crossed!

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Good to read about your farewell flights on Monarch’s A300. It seemed like a good opportunity to fly this workhorse for the last time prior to her retirement, and this in company of a plane load af aviation enthusiasts. Good to see your rebooking ordeal came out well in the end. I have one going on as we speak with SN and it drives me crazy

It was a great opportunity, although boarding is very slow when everyone is taking photos! These rebooking ordeals are sadly all part of the package but they can be so frustrating. I hope you get yours sorted with SN.

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
The things we do for our business I guess your colleagues must be used to this?

Phone calls thankfully are the exception. Much more discreet to book online  
Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Oh yes, even I wouldn’t do such tricky stuff at FRA. Schengen to Schengen, no problem however

So it worked out for the best in the end. I’ll save FRA for when I have more time to spare.

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Of course, your loyal travel companion.

Indeed!

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Me neither. The best ones I had were on my VLM Airlines flight to GVA a few weeks ago. And hopefully on my HAM flight too this week

That seems to be a good enough reason for me to finally fly VLM, still missing in my log

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Hmm, I beg to differ

Ok, I admit I did miss the window!

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Quite a contrast of the yellow crew uniforms with the dark purple/blue cabin.

Definitely

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Gone for now...

 


Martijn,

Thanks for your feedback

Quoting CrimsonNL (Reply 13):
Great to see you got a last minute opportunity to fly on the old A300 workhorse I'm sure it was well worth the effort!

It always is, isn’t it, rebooking and all!

Captain,

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 14):
very enjoyable report, what a good idea to take that farewell flight with the good old A300, great looking plane. I had a couple of flights on this type back in the 90s with the long gone Air Inter of France, that was in the old days when it was still common to get a widebody plane even on domestic flights. Ahh, memories ..

Yeah, it’s always sad when an aircraft type slowly disappears from the skies. Lucky you to have logged those exciting domestics whilst it was possible.

Quoting CaptainRed (Reply 14):
Anyway good to read that Monarch actually made quite an event for this special occasion with the champaign and with the Captain coming around in the cabin. Just a shame that you weren't at the window especially for the low approach in MAN, but for sure a great experience nevertheless.

Monarch indeed did a great job and it was a really nice touch by the Captain. A window seat would have been nice, but hey, I know MAN and its surroundings well enough  

Philip,

Quoting OA260 (Reply 15):
Great report and welcome back. You have been missed. Hope to see more posted by you.

So sweet of you, thank you. I too hope I’ll get back into writing mode.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 15):
Really nice to see this on an aircraft which I miss very much.

The A300 will indeed be sadly missed.

Quoting OA260 (Reply 15):
Spur of the moment flights are always the best. So a great decision indeed.

It certainly was!

Ams747757,

Quoting ams747757 (Reply 16):
What a great report! Enjoyed seeing the LX A320 and of course the main attraction, the A300. The Monarch livery is great looking livery for that aircraft too. Always sad to see the old birds go, especially when they still look good! That A300 seemed to hold up well

Thanks for your reply. When you think how hard that bird has worked, it really was in good condition (ok, except the toilets, but that’s another story!). Nice that Monarch gave the aircraft a fitting send-off.

Happy flying
Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
FLIEGER67
Posts: 5195
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sat Apr 25, 2015 6:06 pm

Hi, H.,

such a nice Saturday afternoon read with lot´s of superb memories and also pictures.
Well done, definitely a day to remember.

Greetings,
FLIEGER67
Tripreporter.net
 
gabrielchew
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sat Apr 25, 2015 9:58 pm

Great report Hannah! Looks like you had a great day out! Nice that Monarch included champagne, although I guess it's the least they could do given the price of the flight (I did investigate, but it was quite expensive I thought).

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Well Lufthansa came to my rescue. My ZRH-FRA flight was put back by 10 minutes, meaning my connection is FRA was no longer possible and I was rebooked onto a later flight. As this didn’t suit me, I went about contacting LH. I got nowhere at the Star Alliance ticket desk at ZRH, they were completely unhelpful, so the call centre it was. After a fairly lengthy discussion, I was rebooked onto the direct ZRH-LHR Swiss service, which had been considerably more expensive at the time of booking.

It's always nice when things like that happen! When I went to Hawaii, I wanted a long connection in JFK coming home so I could check out the lounges. The only flgihts I could get had a really tight connection   However, my inbound flgiht was late, so I got moved to the last flight - plenty of time, hurrah  
Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
The first glimpse of our chariot which arrived from Friedrichshafen. Actually, why didn’t I think of flying into London that way?!

That would have been a good way to get to LGW! Last and penultimate flights!
http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights: AMS-RIX-BUD-VDA,ETH-TLV-FCO-LHR,STN-TXL-LCY,LTN-CPH-LTN,LGW-SZG,MUC-LHR
 
infodesk
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Wed Apr 29, 2015 8:15 am

M,

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 18):
Hi, H.,

such a nice Saturday afternoon read with lot´s of superb memories and also pictures.
Well done, definitely a day to remember.

Thanks. A great & memorable day for sure!

Gab,
Nice to read your feedback.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 19):
Great report Hannah! Looks like you had a great day out! Nice that Monarch included champagne, although I guess it's the least they could do given the price of the flight (I did investigate, but it was quite expensive I thought).

True words! That's the reason I didn't go for the window seat as they wanted at least £20 extra if I remember correctly.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 19):
It's always nice when things like that happen! When I went to Hawaii, I wanted a long connection in JFK coming home so I could check out the lounges. The only flgihts I could get had a really tight connection   However, my inbound flgiht was late, so I got moved to the last flight - plenty of time, hurrah  

Sometimes these things are just meant to be!

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 19):
That would have been a good way to get to LGW! Last and penultimate flights!

It would've been, although logistically a bit of a nightmare  

Happy flying
Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
jwhite9185
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sat May 02, 2015 9:15 am

Hi Hannah, nice report there. What a difference a year makes! Operating into T1 at LHR and seeing it still alive - now there's just a handful of flights and even less shops. And also Monarch - they retired the A330 a couple of days ago too, meaning now their once quite diverse fleet now only consists of the A320/A321.
 
infodesk
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Mon May 04, 2015 8:55 am

Hi James,

Thanks for your feedback.

Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 21):
What a difference a year makes! Operating into T1 at LHR and seeing it still alive - now there's just a handful of flights and even less shops.

So maybe I should deliberrately post my reports a year after the event  
Quoting jwhite9185 (Reply 21):
And also Monarch - they retired the A330 a couple of days ago too, meaning now their once quite diverse fleet now only consists of the A320/A321.

Such a shame. They used to use the widebodies into GVA quite a lot on ski flights, but you could only book them through the tour operator. That would have been a nice catch 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
 
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rtwflyer
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sat May 09, 2015 1:57 pm

Great TR. like your style of writing and the nice pics.
Longest flight ever: TG 795 LAX-BKK A340-541 (HS-TLC "Phitsanulok", MSN 698) Nov. 2007, takeoff to landing 18hrs 25 min- 7186 nm, 13309 km
 
roberts87
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Sun May 10, 2015 3:24 pm

Hello Hannah,

Nice to read another report from you!
That last A300 flight must have been a great experience, judging from your report. Monach really made a terrific effort it seems. Too bad I couldn't join the fun. Thanks for sharing your story though!

Robert
 
akhmad
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Mon May 11, 2015 7:32 pm

Dear Hannah,

First of all, my apology for the late reply!   

Thank you so much for sharing your experience on board of Monarch A300’s farewell flight! It must have felt very special to be a part of the history! What a great array of beautiful pictures!  

I admire you on how you coped with all the booking troubles and your persistence to have everything set right.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
I got nowhere at the Star Alliance ticket desk at ZRH, they were completely unhelpful, so the call centre it was.
Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
not-so friendly guy at the Swiss helpdesk couldn’t really offer any assistance either.

I am unpleasantly surprised by these. Where did all the Swiss friendliness go?

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
An exotic neighbour…or two

Amazing to see SA put its aircrafts on such long layover in LHR.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
the machine decides to think about letting me enter the country for a while!

The machine must have wanted to have a chitchat with you if it was a human being. Unfortunately, it didn’t speak our language.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
It was no problem to take an earlier bus than booked.

Good to know! But, if space permits, I assume?

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
All passengers were under strict instructions not to use OLCI. I didn’t mind, it meant a nice proper boarding pass.

True memorabilia!

Quoting infodesk (Reply 1):
Captain Pound passes through the cabin and personally hands everyone a certificate commemorating today’s special flight as well as a brand new safety card.

Even better memorabilia’s! Why didn’t it occur to me to tag along with all of you!   


Quoting infodesk (Reply 1):
The emotion is her voice is quite obvious and it eventually gets the better of her. She finishes her speech in tears and it’s a very moving moment.

There was no better place to share such emotions than on this particular flight.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
I have to take the opportunity of stocking up on some essentials, don’t I?

Sure! I should have done that as well during my last visit to LGW two weeks ago.   


Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Champagne for all

To go along with orange juice, creating your own mimosa!  


Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
A classic shot

And a legendary one!   


Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
This evening’s snack is a cheese sandwich

It must look better than the croissant on the outbound flight.


Thanks again for sharing! It is so nice to experience all of these through your eyes!

All the bests,
Suryo  
There is no deity except You. Exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers.
 
britjap
Posts: 264
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Tue May 12, 2015 4:01 pm

What a great trip report. Its sad to see the A300 disappear but really nice to be able to see this last flight with Monarch.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
After stocking up on the usual purchases from the airport bakery
Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
a quick visit to M&S is necessary.

Ahh... you clearly seem to know how to do these trips properly! Its all about priorities!!  
Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
The first glimpse of our chariot which arrived from Friedrichshafen. Actually, why didn’t I think of flying into London that way?!

Haha, pity you didn't think of it earlier. You could have visited the Zeppelin Museum before boarding.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Champagne for all
Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Captain Pound passes through the cabin and personally hands everyone a certificate commemorating today’s special flight as well as a brand new safety card.

Nice touch from Monarch. Hope you weren't restricted to only one glass each though!   

Quoting infodesk (Reply 1):
the flight would perform a low level flypast at MAN.

Awesome idea. Pity you couldn't see out but still great to have been in a flypast.

Quoting infodesk (Reply 1):
She finishes her speech in tears

Nice to see that there was some real emotion from the crew.

Quoting infodesk (Reply 1):
a new Fokker for me

And what a way to round out a great day!!

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
it’s been a while since the last one! Even though it’s now a year since I did this trip, I still hope you’ll enjoy reading about it.

Thanks for putting this up. Its great to see other people posting trips that they did over a year ago!! I have photos from trips over a year old which I would still like to post like Skymark A330 inaugural, Spring Airlines Japan inaugural. Will hopefully get around to it soon.


Quoting infodesk (Reply 1):
A classic shot

Awesome shot.


Regards
 
infodesk
Topic Author
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Wed May 13, 2015 1:05 pm

Hi guys,

Thanks for your replies, much appreciated!

RTWflyer,

Quoting RTWflyer (Reply 23):
Great SA Linhas Aereas">TR. like your style of writing and the nice pics.

Nice to read your feedback, thanks.


Robert,

Quoting roberts87 (Reply 24):
That last A300 flight must have been a great experience, judging from your report. Monach really made a terrific effort it seems. Too bad I couldn't join the fun. Thanks for sharing your story though!

Yes, it was an experience I’m glad I was part of and Monarch did their best to make it extra special. Thanks for leaving a comment!


Suryo,

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
First of all, my apology for the late reply!

No apology needed, I know you’ve been busy.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
Thank you so much for sharing your experience on board of Monarch A300’s farewell flight! It must have felt very special to be a part of the history! What a great array of beautiful pictures! I admire you on how you coped with all the booking troubles and your persistence to have everything set right

Well, you know with this hobby sometimes things don’t go to plan. As long as it works out in the end it’s worth it! And yes, it was great to be part of such a special event.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
I am unpleasantly surprised by these. Where did all the Swiss friendliness go?

I’m asking myself the same question. Sadly it has got even worse recently 
Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
Amazing to see SA put its aircrafts on such long layover in LHR.

Indeed.

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
The machine must have wanted to have a chitchat with you if it was a human being. Unfortunately, it didn’t speak our language.

So next time I’ll go and speak to a human, a much nicer experience!

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
Good to know! But, if space permits, I assume?

That’s right

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
Even better memorabilia’s! Why didn’t it occur to me to tag along with all of you!

You should have done!

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
There was no better place to share such emotions than on this particular flight.

It fitted perfectly

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
Sure! I should have done that as well during my last visit to LGW two weeks ago.

It’s worth the detour!

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
To go along with orange juice, creating your own mimosa!

That’s exactly what I did  
Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
And a legendary one!

Thank you!

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
It must look better than the croissant on the outbound flight.

Ten times better!

Quoting akhmad (Reply 25):
Thanks again for sharing! It is so nice to experience all of these through your eyes!

Thanks Suryo. Glad you enjoyed it.

Britjap,

Quoting britjap (Reply 26):
What a great trip report. Its sad to see the A300 disappear but really nice to be able to see this last flight with Monarch.

Thanks for your feedback and great to know you enjoyed the report.

Quoting britjap (Reply 26):
Ahh... you clearly seem to know how to do these trips properly! Its all about priorities!!

And M&S is pretty high up on the list of priorities!

Quoting britjap (Reply 26):
Haha, pity you didn't think of it earlier. You could have visited the Zeppelin Museum before boarding.

Now there’s an idea, still somewhere I’ve not visited despite it being not too far away.

Quoting britjap (Reply 26):
Nice touch from Monarch. Hope you weren't restricted to only one glass each though!

One glass was enough for me at altitude  
Quoting britjap (Reply 26):
Awesome idea. Pity you couldn't see out but still great to have been in a flypast.

Something I’m not likely to experience again for a while.

Quoting britjap (Reply 26):
Nice to see that there was some real emotion from the crew

Oh yes, it was very emotional.

Quoting britjap (Reply 26):
And what a way to round out a great day!!

Absolutely

Quoting britjap (Reply 26):
Thanks for putting this up. Its great to see other people posting trips that they did over a year ago!! I have photos from trips over a year old which I would still like to post like Skymark A330 inaugural, Spring Airlines Japan inaugural. Will hopefully get around to it soon.

That’s really nice to hear, thanks. Would be great to see your report here soon!

Happy flying all

Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper
 
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airbuseric
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Mon Jun 01, 2015 6:51 pm

Hi Hannah

i'm in the need to catch up with some reports here, missing time, you know. Good to see the A300 and Monarch.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Even though it’s now a year since I did this trip, I still hope you’ll enjoy reading about it.

It brings my memories back when I scored the ZB A300 on LTN-PMI 2 years ago with fellowmember CrimsonNL. We got their oldest A300, but it was retired already when you made this farewell flight.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Well Lufthansa came to my rescue. My ZRH-FRA flight was put back by 10 minutes, meaning my connection is FRA was no longer possible and I was rebooked onto a later flight. As this didn’t suit me, I went about contacting LH. I got nowhere at the Star Alliance ticket desk at ZRH, they were completely unhelpful, so the call centre it was.

Not helpful? And even for you... you know what I mean. That's quite rude.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
The LX flight to LHR worked fine, but the BHX-ZRH didn’t work, this seems to be the norm with mileage tickets and not-so friendly guy at the Swiss helpdesk couldn’t really offer any assistance either.

Again a bad customer service experience, interesting to hear from you. LH, LX... not good on them!

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
The crossaints that Swiss serve on the early morning flights are not at all to my liking

Agree. I don't like plain croissants. Always creating a mess, and boring bread  
Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
he ticket was purchased online for £26 and journey time was scheduled to be just over an hour. It was no problem to take an earlier bus than booked.

OMG what a high fare for that busride. Good that you can take any earlier service, for sure that's included in their sky high fare.

Quoting infodesk (Thread starter):
Once in arrivals I discover that Birmingham also has a branch of M&S Simply Food. Dangerous indeed, especially in the evening when the staff are reducing all the delicious cakes that are going out of date.

Hehe... same habit. I love bringing a visit to my local M&S grocery in late afternoon when they discount a lot of their remaining fresh foods!


Nice also to ride a Fokker 100 back home. Always a bit 'special' in these days.

MfG,   
Eric
"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
 
infodesk
Topic Author
Posts: 1462
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RE: Monarch's Farwell To The A300

Fri Jun 05, 2015 8:17 am

Hi Eric,

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 28):
'm in the need to catch up with some reports here, missing time, you know. Good to see the A300 and Monarch

No worries, a similar problem here  
Quoting airbuseric (Reply 28):
t brings my memories back when I scored the ZB A300 on LTN-PMI 2 years ago with fellowmember CrimsonNL. We got their oldest A300, but it was retired already when you made this farewell flight.

That was a good catch for sure. And in some ways even more special when it’s a regular flight.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 28):
Not helpful? And even for you... you know what I mean. That's quite rude.

No, no help whatsoever. I actually feel that going there in a uniform does more harm than good….

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 28):
Again a bad customer service experience, interesting to hear from you. LH, LX... not good on them!

Sadly that seems to be the norm, certainly in my experience. Had another incident recently where LX put my flight back by 30 hours(!), no information, I found out by chance and only got re-booked on an acceptable alternative after a long discussion.

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 28):
Agree. I don't like plain croissants. Always creating a mess, and boring bread

  

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 28):
OMG what a high fare for that busride. Good that you can take any earlier service, for sure that's included in their sky high fare.

High, yes, but the convenience factor won that day!

Quoting airbuseric (Reply 28):
Hehe... same habit. I love bringing a visit to my local M&S grocery in late afternoon when they discount a lot of their remaining fresh foods!

I didn’t even realize they had stores in the Netherlands. Nice  
Quoting airbuseric (Reply 28):
Nice also to ride a Fokker 100 back home. Always a bit 'special' in these days.

Oh yes, log them whilst you can!

Thanks for your reply & happy flying
Infodesk   
"Do nothing in haste, look well to each step and from the beginning think what may be the end" - Edward Whymper

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