KRK-LHR on BA 12 September 2016

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Comet
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KRK-LHR on BA 12 September 2016

Post by Comet »

We had a great week in Krakow, with mostly good, warm weather. It is a place I would definitely visit again. Our holiday ended on 12th September, and the week seemed to have flown by! We caught the train from Krakow main railway station to the Airport.

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The train from Krakow at its final stop in Krakow Airport.

We had to wait a while to check in, I had pre-reserved seats 19A and 19B as I knew I would not be able to check in online the day before as I would have no access to a printer. There seemed to be no logic to the check in times, as some flights which were due to depart after ours were already checking in when we arrived and we had to wait quite a while for ours. Once we had located the right check in desks, we had to wait a while to actually drop off our bags. I had noticed a few LOT flights on the departures board, and I hoped that this time I might actually see and photograph/video the aircraft, but no such luck!

We went through the security check, having to remove camera and camcorder from their bags, unlike the other airports I have used over the years, and we even had to put our watches in the tray to go through the scanner.

After security we found ourselves in the departures area. I was not impressed. We followed the signs for the toilets, and joined a long queue. It turned out there was only ONE toilet in that particular area of the departure lounge. As it was dinnertime we tried (miserably) to get a hot meal - the restaurant was already full and there was a long queue for a seat. We eventually bought pretzels and left half of them because of the huge amount of salt on them, making them very unpleasant.

We wanted to buy some cherry vodka and chocolates in the duty free, as we had tasted cherry vodka during our Trabant tour and enjoyed it. The duty free was cramped and narrow, and there was a long queue through the shop making it difficult to find what you wanted, and we hoped that we would get served in time to board our flight. We did get served, and then we decided to make our way to gate 16, where our flight was to depart from (the gate information had been provided before the check in time!)

Viewing in KRK is practically impossible so I never managed to get any photos because I hardly saw anything.

Just as we approached our gate we realised that we would have to go through passport control. Other airports have the passport control near the security checks, not just before the gates! We were held up in the queue because the Commissar on the desk took ages checking a child passport, and our flight was called while we were in the queue. The first boarding call was made at 13:05.

Once the Commissar had checked our passports and boarding cards, we were bussed to the aircraft - A320 G-EUUH.

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People boarding the aircraft.

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Boarding the aircraft. We boarded through the rear stairs.

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View of the aircraft.

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Not far away, a familiar friend was also being boarded :mrgreen: OO-SSU.

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The view from my seat. At first we couldn't fasten our seatbelts because the aircraft was still being refuelled.

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Not sure who they are.

We pushed back at 13:37. the captain said we would have a "short taxi" to the runway, smooth conditions were expected along the way and the flight would take about two hours. The "short taxi" seemed to go on for ever!

We finally took off at 13:52 and had a smooth climb through blue, clear skies. There was some slight haze near Krakow but nothing serious.

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Shortly after take off.

Our route took us over Prague and the Czech Republic, over Germany and Holland. According to Airshow we flew at 36,000, 546 mph with a 25 mph tail wind.

I was hungry and it was nice when we were offered a snack - either salad or pastrami, cheese and gherkin sandwich. I adore pastrami and cheese so I opted for the sandwich!

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The box containing the sandwich and an apple and cinnamon muffin!

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The sandwich and the muffin - small but perfect tasting :mrgreen:

We crossed Germany and flew south of Dresden and Jena, then over Dortmund and into the Netherlands.

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A scene from Airshow.

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Over the Continent.

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Somewhere over the Netherlands.

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As we flew towards south east England we passed my favourite stretch of coastline in the world!

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Cloud and my favourite coastline.

The cloud increased as we crossed the sea but had cleared again when we crossed into England.

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Over south east England.

We had to circle near London for a while, the Captain explained, because the LHR runway use changed at 15:00, the time we would be due to land, so that would cause a slight delay.

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Nice clear views as we circled near London.

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Circling over the London suburbs.

We landed at LHR at 15:04, which was good, and taxied back to Terminal Five.

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Cathay Pacific 777.

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British Airways A380.

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BA A319, 747 taking off in background.

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Busy LHR!

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BA 747.

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Almost at the terminal.

After disembarking we caught the Heathrow Express to Paddington. I do recommend that route to Heathrow - much better than a long ride on the Underground when you have lots of luggage.

We had had great flights, a great holiday and smooth travel to and from London. Can't wait to do it all again next year!


The video of our flight.
Sabena and Sobelair - gone but never forgotten.
Louise

Stij
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Re: KRK-LHR on BA 12 September 2016

Post by Stij »

Hi Comet,

Nice report!

I never took the Heathrow Express as the places where I stay are next to the Piccadilly line and thus I never have to change... Maybe I should try it once...

Stij

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Comet
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Re: KRK-LHR on BA 12 September 2016

Post by Comet »

Thanks for your comments Stij.
Our train from York goes into Kings Cross, which is on the Piccadilly Line to Heathrow but those Underground trains to Heathrow can get so packed (bad when you have luggage) and take so long that we decided to get the Heathrow Express from Paddington, which is a short trip on the Hammersmith and City Line (or Circle Line) from king's Cross. We hit a quiet time going down to Heathrow from home, and the Underground was not too bad and we found a seat. We had booked the Heathrow Express 90 days in advance, and at weekend you get some great 90 days in advance deals. Our first class ticket was only £2 more than the standard class ticket would have cost us.
Sabena and Sobelair - gone but never forgotten.
Louise

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sn26567
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Re: KRK-LHR on BA 12 September 2016

Post by sn26567 »

Sorry to hear that KRK airport passenger experience is becoming so awful. The best part seems to be the train ride from the city (on one of the most beautiful trains of the continent).

BA flights are still some of the best European flights with the free snack (soon to be cancelled: good that you could still take advantage of it).

The Heathrow Express is indeed an excellent choice to travel to the City, but it is darn expensive!

My usual question: what was the load factor on your flight? Looking at people on the stairs, it seemed quite full.
André
ex Sabena #26567

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Comet
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Re: KRK-LHR on BA 12 September 2016

Post by Comet »

Thanks for your comments Andre. I have always enjoyed my flights with BA, even when our luggage didn't accompany us at Christmas 2006 the inflight product and service were very good (hot panini from MAN-LHR for example). My big gripe with BA starting to charge for inflight sandwiches is not just the paying aspect, it's the fact that they will (possibly) charge two or three times more to buy a sandwich onboard than you would pay in the shop if you bought the sandwich on the ground. They have teamed up with Marks and Spencer, who sell perfectly nice sandwiches to be honest, I am just curious to see how much the sandwiches will cost onboard compared to in the shops.
A tip for using the Heathrow Express - if you know long in advance your dates of travel, then book your tickets online up to 90 days before you travel, that is what we did both ways. If you book to travel in first class on a weekend it will cost you £7.50 (£5.50 in standard class) if you book 90 days or more in advance online. To travel during the week buying a standard class ticket online 90 days or more beforehand will cost you £12.10. That is the way to use the Heathrow Express, as buying tickets when you travel does work out costly. Here is the website detailing the fares https://www.heathrowexpress.com/tickets ... ices-fares
I would say the loadfactor for the flight was 100%. It is a very popular service and I didn't see one empty seat.
Sabena and Sobelair - gone but never forgotten.
Louise

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YYZ727
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Re: KRK-LHR on BA 12 September 2016

Post by YYZ727 »

Comet wrote:
Image
Not sure who they are.
They are Travelwings, a Czech airline

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Comet
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Re: KRK-LHR on BA 12 September 2016

Post by Comet »

YYZ727 wrote:
Comet wrote:
Image
Not sure who they are.
They are Travelwings, a Czech airline
Thank you.
Sabena and Sobelair - gone but never forgotten.
Louise

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