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MesaFlyGuy
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Posts: 3916
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:36 pm

Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Sun Jan 10, 2016 2:26 am

Let the Blue Times Roll—JetBlue’s Inaugural flight into Daytona Beach, Florida



The month was February 2015, and I had just committed to Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach. I was dreading having to go from living directly under the CAMERON approach for Kennedy International Airport to living at an airport with eight or nine daily commercial departures.

One morning around 0600 I was waiting outside my friend’s house to pick her up for school. Don’t ask me why I remember so many details about the morning; I just have a good memory haha. I was sitting in my car waiting for her to come outside (she was late as usual, but that’s okay because she still, to this day, puts up with me like a champ and I was perusing Airliners.net like I normally did each morning (and afternoon, evening, night, and generally 24/7  )and I saw “JetBlue announces DAB service”. My heart skipped a beat for a second and I read the news that my two homes would be connected just as I started college! Perfect! My first thought was, “Wow wouldn’t it be cool to run over to the observation deck at the school and watch the first flight come in?” Then I texted my dad (also an avgeek despite having some less than ideal experiences while in the military) and he said that we could look at booking on the inaugural flight if our schedules lined up (at the time he was commuting up and down the east coast for business at least once a week) and if the price was right.

Well, the price was right, we had enough points to book his ticket for free, and here we are!

BACKGROUND

As I mentioned, I’m now attending Embry Riddle Aeronautical University with a major in Aeronautical Science and a minor in Business Administration (loving it by the way). I am a HUE fan of JetBlue, with most people I know saying its “nice that I respect the company as much as I do”. This is their way of telling me I have an unhealthy obsession! SO imagine my excitement when my favorite airline announced flights between my two home airports.
By the beginning of 2016 my family had relocated in Myrtle Beach and my dad and I needed a way to get to New York for the inaugural flight! So we booked two seats on JetBlue out of Charleston, South Carolina (my personal favorite airport I’ve been to) for the day before the Daytona trip (Wednesday, January 6th). So this trip report will cover both the CHS-JFK flight on January 6th and the JFK-DAB flight on January 7th (obviously with a bigger emphasis placed on the Daytona flight).

Welcome aboard flight 1274 with nonstop service to New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport…
On the morning of January 5th, I direct messaged JetBlue on twitter and asked what tail number we could expect on flight 1274 the next day. I can usually wait the night before and find out for myself but I got impatient this day and decided to just reach out to the airline and get a quick response-which is just what happened.

**Sidenote: JetBlue’s social media team really is the greatest out there. They ALWAYS respond even when it isn’t exactly necessary. They really want their customers to know that they care and they are paying attention to what customers want and need.

Five whole minutes after I messaged them, B6 responded saying that ship 569 was set to operate the flight. I was excited as I haven’t flown the Tenth Anniversary jet yet. My dad and I are both proficient in using flightaware and flightradar24 to track our planes, so both being excited about the special aircraft, we were both monitoring N569JB the night before our flight.

We woke up at 0630 on the morning of the sixth and saw that we had a delay notice from JetBlue. We looked and saw a 60 minute delay for out inbound flight, 1273 from JFK. We continued getting ready until we got another delay notification, letting us know that our inbound was now two hours late, and our flight was 90 minutes behind schedule. We didn’t mind, as we were just planning on killing the day hanging around T5 at JFK before heading to our hotel for the evening. By the time flight 1273 took off from JFK, the registration shown on flightradar24 changed from N569JB to N715JB. Turns out 569 had sprung a hydraulic leak after operating JBU90 from San Diego to Kennedy. My family and I flew on ship 715 from BQN to JFK last Christmas, so I was familiar with our new bird. The problem, however, was that it had a Blueberry tail on it. Why does this matter? I fly JetBlue on average 30-40 times a year. (JFK-CHS-JFK is my main routing, though now that I’m at ERAU MCO-JFK-MCO is a popular choice for me). Out of my last ten JetBlue flights, six have been blueberries! I know it’s a really silly thing to get aggravated about, but I’m just flat-out tired of this tailscheme lol. Lately I’ve been getting Tartans which is a nice change but seriously, there are too many Blueberry-tailed aircraft!  Anyway, at least this particular Blueberry had a positive connotation in my head, my last flight with it having involved the Caribbean (my favorite region).

So, with our new bird on its way to us, we left our hotel at 0915 for our 1005 flight!

JetBlue fight 1274
CHS-JFK
01/06/2016
STD: 1005
ATD: 1133 (pushback), 1145 (wheels up)
STA: 1146
ATA: 1304 (touchdown), 1308 (brakes set)
Duration: 1 hour, 21 minutes
Aircraft: N715JB “How’s my flying? Call 1-800-Jetblue”

One thing that I can’t get used to is the fact that, since my dad flies between CHS and JFK once a week, 99% of which is on JetBlue (every once in a while he throws in a Delta flight), the JetBlue staff at CHS know him by name! Last time we flew out of there they said, “Oh Mister XXXX, welcome back! Is this the son we keep hearing about?” I’m not used to my dad, who went almost 40 years without flying after his series of accidents in the military, is now flying enough to know the ground staff. But, I’m not gonna, judge!  

We got through security without a hitch (thank you PreCheck) and were soon at our gate, which was still vacant as our aircraft was about an hour out of CHS still. I decided to walk around and get some pictures, as most bored avgeeks do.

Southwest getting ready to go to DAL
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106160957_zpsj1xuwfr6.jpg
American a319 (N733UW) doing a quick CLT turn
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161045a_zpshr6mokut.jpg
Soon enough our plane was on the ground
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161048_zpsh6av8vj8.jpg
There she is! One of only two mainline aircraft I’ve ever boarded without a jetbridge (the other being N292JB in SXM this past April).
American pushed back from Bravo Seven only 25 minutes after parking. Impressive.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161058a_zpsuaqosynj.jpg
While she’s not the 10th Anniversary plane, she’ll do just fine for this sector.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161122_zpseqjxohpj.jpg
Cruising at 35,000 feet.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161148_zps1gaur2rl.jpg
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0274_zpsyn6fmjb9.jpg
Right before we started descending into New York I happened to look up and see something strange. The side wall panels separated a little and treated guests to a nice view of the inner workings of an a320!
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161253a_zpslr9el8ii.jpg

My beloved Long Island!

After a very quick one hour and twenty one minute flight, we were on the ground in New York where the temperature was a biting twenty degrees Fahrenheit!

As we had the whole day to kill, my dad and I hung around the terminal for a couple of hours before heading to the AirTrain. We had lunch at one of T5’s many excellent restaurants and did some spotting.
N547JB was at gate 23 getting ready for a flight to Long Beach, California.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0277_zpszagswrjf.jpg
N763JB was just arriving from Houston as flight 582. It then turned around as flight 1041 to Savannah, Georgia. 763 was actually the first JetBlue plane I ever flew on, back in 2011 as flight 141 from JFK to Palm Beach. That was also the first time I ever flew on my own.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161500_zpsymxdrywi.jpg
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0288_zps0xfp9moo.jpg
N775JB “Vets In Blue” had just arrived as flight 1026 from Tampa. It would go to Jacksonville about an hour later as flight 477.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0284_zpsjjcf4nvy.jpg
N705JB was getting ready to head to Ft Myers as flight 1729.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0279_zpssg5ciyot.jpg
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161459_zpsx0ctqik2.jpg
There she goes!

N653JB was seemingly done boarding for flight 581 to Houston. About two seconds after this picture was taken, the gate agent just shouted “Anyone else for Houston?” and a group of four that were just getting to the gate and sitting down looked around and said, “Oh, it already boarded? I thought we were the first ones here!” Some people are a little oblivious, I guess.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161440_zpsjkagkc7a.jpg
At about 1530 we decided to head over to the AirTrain and go to the hotel for the evening.
One last view before we hopped on the train. Terminal 7 looks so empty without a colony of United 757s parked around it.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0106161528a_zpsumj5ztyb.jpg



Part Two: JFK-DAB

January 7th was the day we had been looking forward to for a long time. We got to the airport around 0700 and headed over to gate 16 for the festivities.

http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/87d9023a-fa30-43ea-bfe9-b73e02a37e3c_zpsbzhowzxi.jpeg
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0107160738a_zpsfxd3icjt.jpg
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0107160741_zpsol7g3m9c.jpg
Daytona’s commissioned painting (as every station receives when inaugurated)

There was a nice breakfast selection along with a bunch of balloons and music playing. Of course, it wouldn’t be complete without a giant orange archway leading into the gate area! Complete with a few speeches from several Volusia County public figures and JetBlue team members and a ribbon cutting (the ribbon was being stubborn and didn’t want to cut all the way, so it took a few tries but it was all in good spirit), boarding commenced right on time.

N661JB “Let the Blue Times Roll” sitting at gate 16 waiting eagerly for its passengers!
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0293_zpsgagpernx.jpg
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/n661jb_zpsv8tnchhs.jpg

I have to say I was a little surprised that they didn’t use either a sharklet-equipped aircraft or a newer one with a tartan tail. I only say that because the inaugural ALB flight was operated by N766JB, which sports the new tartan tailscheme.

Either way, our bird was shiny and ready for us to head down south!


JetBlue fight 393
JFK-DAB
01/07/2016
STD: 0859
ATD: 0855 (pushback), 0910 (wheels up)
STA: 1155
ATA: 1124 (touchdown), 1128 (brakes set)
Duration: 2 hours, 14 minutes
Aircraft: N661JB “Let the Blue Times Roll”

I had been talking to our First Officer for a while before boarding and he invited me to come to the flightdeck before we left for some pictures and to talk more. Turns out he was also a Riddle guy (Class of 1994). After about ten minutes of hanging out up front, I headed back to my seat to get ready to go.

http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0107160827_HDR_zps7u6qlm0c.jpg
(Now you can put a face with the username)
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0107160825a_zpse49upkn5.jpg
Every seat was fitted with a small flag, the port side of the cabin with Florida flags and the starboard side with American flags.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0107160833_zpsylch77gy.jpg

Our larger neighbor (flight 123 to LAX)
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/3be5faab-d3cc-4779-bcd4-4c74edbf5a87_zpswx49dixt.jpeg
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0304_zpsetlzs9ca.jpg
Legroom was great as usual
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0107160851_zpspuflzchu.jpg

We pushed back at 0855 (four minutes ahead of schedule) and were in the air at 0910. As we pushed back we were accompanied by a tug on either side of the aircraft—one waving a large American flag and the other flying the Florida flag. They had already announced that there would be no water cannon salute at JFK due to the freezing temperatures, however there would be one on the Daytona end.

(This guy has the Florida flag)
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0296_zpsitlbxl84.jpg
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0298_zpsnj2dkbg7.jpg

Once in the air, the flight operated as normal. For about an hour…

The complimentary beverage and snacks services began about thirty minutes after takeoff and I opted for all my usuals—black coffee, blue chips and pretzels. I got a pineapple juice a little later to finish off.
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/9548df22-1e86-4625-ae2d-3f471ab62c83_zpsktmbt7ba.jpeg

After the service was completed, the real fun began. During the flight we were playing “Inflight Bingo” which is not what it sounds like. Many partners had donated prizes for the flight and, with over twenty to distribute, random seat numbers were pulled out of a hat. We were in row 10 (we had the ABC side to ourselves with me in the window and my dad in the aisle), and my dad actually won the second largest prize (a 3 day, 2 night stay at Hammock’s Resort in Palm Coast, complete with a three bedroom oceanview suite, daily breakfast for four people, and a round of golf for four).
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/fd29ce28-7c48-47a6-a8d2-9a2b19e5222a_zps7pv8rh0y.jpeg
Cruising at 36,000 feet while playing bingo

As soon as the game was finished, we felt the nose turn downward and we started our descent into DAB!
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/0107160943_zpsffc9fx9z.jpg
Starting our descent into warmer skies
http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0314_zpsskiepwkk.jpg

We landed on runway 07L and exited on taxiway Whiskey at 1124 local. We had a follow-me vehicle guide us to the ramp and under an arc of water from the airport fire department. Lots of people were out on the ramp, including but not limited to airport workers, news crews, people whom I assume were airport executives.

When we disembarked we were greeting with much fanfare. People were handing out nice Canvas bags full of promotional items as passengers walked into the terminal, greeting by the sound of Frank Sinatra’s classic “New York, New York”. I could see a New York style food cart, a bunch of cupcakes and a cake set up for the outbound passengers, with some news cameras dispersed throughout the crowd.



http://i1291.photobucket.com/albums/b549/Mesaflyguy/GOPR0318_zpsvvbodn8d.jpg

One last shot of our beautiful bird before we set out to the rental car desks.

As we exited the terminal there were easily three hundred people clapping and cheering as passengers walked down the blue carpet (no kidding, JetBlue had a Hollywood-style blue carpet rolled out! After being greeted and running into one of my professors (he runs the Hub at ERAU and is on some committee that was involved in getting JetBlue into Daytona), we made it to the rental car desk. We had rented a car to drive back to CHS to pick up our car from that was parked at the airport from the previous day.

And after about eight hours we were back at the house in Myrtle Beach and ready to get back to work the next day.

FUN FACT: The next day, I got hired by DGS to work as a ticketing and gate agent for Spirit Airlines in Myrtle Beach this summer! Finally cracked my way into the airline industry!

So there’s my not-so-subtle recap of JetBlue’s first ever [scheduled] flight to Daytona Beach! It was a great flight, and I’m sorry I don’t have any shots of the water cannon salute. I have video but posting them in trip reports hasn’t worked for me yet, so why try now? There are a bunch of pictures easily accessible throughout the internet!  

Hope everybody enjoyed their respective holidays and I wish a year of good fortune for everyone! Thanks for reading and I welcome any and all comments!  
The views I express are my own and do not reflect the views and opinions of my company.
 
lychemsa
Posts: 1864
Joined: Sun Oct 11, 2009 8:39 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Sun Jan 10, 2016 3:37 am

I love JetBlue. The food looks great at the gate. Wish they served this stuff on the plane.
 
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FLIHGH
Posts: 260
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2015 4:19 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Sun Jan 10, 2016 6:20 pm

Great report! Congrats on the Spirit hiring, as well!
 
JBAirwaysFan
Posts: 569
Joined: Sat May 23, 2009 11:17 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Mon Jan 11, 2016 1:15 am

You haven't the slightest of clue how long I've been waiting for this to happen.
In Loving Memory of Casey Edward Falconer; May 16, 1992-May 9, 2012
 
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lesfalls
Posts: 3413
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RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Mon Jan 11, 2016 2:35 pm

Great Report! Thanks for posting!
Lufthansa: Einfach ein bisschen besser.
 
jeffh747
Posts: 868
Joined: Sat Apr 05, 2014 6:32 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:28 pm

Great to see JetBlue have so many cool festivities. The flags were a very nice touch!
Great TR!

Jeff
ATR-72-600, A318 A319 A320 A320neo A321 A321neo A332 A333 B717 B727 B734 B73G B738 B739 B752 B762 B763 B772 B788 CRJ2 DHC6 DHC8-300 E145 E190 MD82 MD83 MD90 SF340B
 
MesaFlyGuy
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Posts: 3916
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:36 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Mon Jan 11, 2016 4:36 pm

Quoting lychemsa (Reply 1):
Quoting FLIHGH (Reply 2):
Quoting Lesfalls (Reply 4):
Quoting jeffh747 (Reply 5):

Thank you guys!

Quoting JBAirwaysFan (Reply 3):

You haven't the slightest of clue how long I've been waiting for this to happen.

Haha I can imagine!
The views I express are my own and do not reflect the views and opinions of my company.
 
WearyDrover
Posts: 659
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2015 2:12 am

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Tue Jan 12, 2016 2:42 am

Hi MesaFlyGuy.

What a wonderful trip report. It's good to see B6 put on a bit if a party for passengers when launching a new route.

Nice too to see that you were able to visit the flight deck. It's always a bonus when the flight crew invite you.

Congratulations to your dad on winning the prize and even bigger congratulations to you on being offered a job. All the best there.

Thanks for sharing.
Weary
A man may learn wisdom even from a foe - Aristophanes
 
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aerdingus
Posts: 2717
Joined: Tue Dec 05, 2006 8:58 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Fri Jan 15, 2016 5:27 pm

Wow that was an unreal prize for your dad to win! :O I love the effort B6 went to in this, all the flags. Maybe some day I'll fly them but I don't know how I feel about blue crisps! Best of luck with the job.

Cheers

 
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Flaps
Posts: 1673
Joined: Sat Feb 05, 2000 1:11 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:26 pm

Very nice report.

My that DAB terminal is a far cry from when I was a Riddle rat from 83 to 87. Back then were three (maybe four) ground level gates in the main terminal for EA and DL and one additional gate in a prefab metal extension for PI. From your car to the aircraft was less than 100 yards.
 
MesaFlyGuy
Topic Author
Posts: 3916
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:36 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Sat Jan 16, 2016 12:45 am

Quoting Flaps (Reply 9):
Very nice report.

Thank you sir!  
Quoting Flaps (Reply 9):
one additional gate in a prefab metal extension for PI

That's still there actually!

Quoting aerdingus (Reply 8):

Wow that was an unreal prize for your dad to win! :O I love the effort B6 went to in this, all the flags. Maybe some day I'll fly them but I don't know how I feel about blue crisps! Best of luck with the job.

Haha yes it was a nice surprise! Thank you very much for the kind words and, by the way, you won't be disappointed when you get around to tasting the blue chips!  
Quoting WearyDrover (Reply 7):
What a wonderful trip report. It's good to see B6 put on a bit if a party for passengers when launching a new route.

Thank you so much! Yes it really was a nice atmosphere all around.

Quoting WearyDrover (Reply 7):
Nice too to see that you were able to visit the flight deck. It's always a bonus when the flight crew invite you.

Indeed! It took me by a little bit of surprise when he invited me as I've only been invited up once before.

Quoting WearyDrover (Reply 7):
Congratulations to your dad on winning the prize and even bigger congratulations to you on being offered a job. All the best there

Thank you so much! I look forward to produced some new trip reports with my nonrev benefits!  
The views I express are my own and do not reflect the views and opinions of my company.
 
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AirCbp
Posts: 59
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RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Mon Jan 25, 2016 10:02 pm

Very nice report, thank you!

If you like JetBlue and airports like I do, then your favourite airport should be Long Beach, California! It is the most unuasual yet light, bright and pleasant (!) Airport I've ever been to, amd it is completely dominated by JetBlue.
 
MesaFlyGuy
Topic Author
Posts: 3916
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:36 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Wed Jan 27, 2016 4:15 pm

Quoting AirCbp (Reply 11):

No, thank you! And yes LGB is a neat airport. Haven't been there yet but I'm sure I'll pass through at some point in time.
The views I express are my own and do not reflect the views and opinions of my company.
 
jetblue01
Posts: 184
Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2012 2:28 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Tue Feb 09, 2016 4:19 am

How many flights a day does B6 have between JFK-DAB??
 
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Adipasquale
Posts: 831
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RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Tue Feb 09, 2016 3:32 pm

Does B6 do this for every inaugural flight, or just inaugurals to new stations?
DH8A DH8B CR1 CR2 CR7 CR9 E45 E70 E75 E90 D93 M88 318 319 320 321 333 343 712 732 733 734 73G 738 739 744 752 753 762 763 772 77L 77W
 
MesaFlyGuy
Topic Author
Posts: 3916
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:36 pm

RE: Let The Blue Times Roll! B6 Inaugural DAB Flight!

Wed Feb 10, 2016 12:35 am

Quoting jetblue01 (Reply 13):
How many flights a day does B6 have between JFK-DAB??

Just the one. Hoping for a second in peak season but we need this one to prove itself first.

Quoting Adipasquale (Reply 14):
Does B6 do this for every inaugural flight, or just inaugurals to new stations?

I believe they do it for every inaugural. My dad was in the terminal for the first CHS-DCA flight while he waited for his JFK flight and he said it was similar, granted not as all-out festive as the DAB one was (cake, balloons, and water canon salute, but not as many speeches and a bit less of a spread (in terms of food offerings in the terminal)).
The views I express are my own and do not reflect the views and opinions of my company.

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