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Road to Singapore: A380 to Singapore for £100

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  • Road to Singapore: A380 to Singapore for £100

    This trip starts in June 2012. I was tipped off to a mistake fare that Alitalia had put on their website. By creating an open-jaw ticket from Milan to a choice of anywhere in Japan/Singapore/Thailand, returning to any other city in Italy, it was possible to get some ridiculous low fares. For example, a return trip to Tokyo would cost just 76 EUR (£60) including taxes! What is more, these fares also applied to Skyteam members, opening up flights on Air France, KLM and others. The only downside was that you had to go out and back on the next flight in order to get this fare. This would mean only 7 hours on the ground in Tokyo or 5 hours on the ground in Singapore, before flying back again. I had to have a piece of this action, and decided to use this opportunity to try and get my first flight on the Airbus A380, on an Air France flight to Singapore. I really wanted to go to Tokyo, but the only route to Tokyo at this giveaway rate was on an Alitalia 777. I had been to Singapore before, but the flight on the A380 was the deciding factor here!

    I hesitated for all of a few minutes, before buying a flight with Air France from Milan to Singapore, returning to Bari, Italy, for the grand total of 149 EUR (£116/USD 179) including all taxes for 15,231 miles of flying. The fare breakdown was £15 for the fare, the rest was taxes! This worked out at around £0.007p ($0.01) per mile, a pretty reasonable fare I reckon. Not quite the cheapest flight Iíve ever done, which was EMA-ORK-EMA and EMA-DUB-EMA for the grand total of 2p each (no taxes), but that was Ryanair and this is Air France!

    I now had to get to Italy and back. The easiest option to fit with the timing of the other flights was to fly on Flybe from Manchester, bagging the Embraer 195 (another first for me). Coming back would be more of a problem from Italy, and as I would only be on the ground in Singapore for a few hours I would only have hand luggage so I opted to get off the flight in Paris, and come home straight from there. I booked an Air France A320 flight back from Paris to Manchester, and decided just as insurance I'd book a cheapo Ryanair flight back from Bari for £12 all in, in the event that I got routed to Bari via some other means and missed my AF flight back from CDG.

    Due to the early start from Manchester on the Saturday, I decided to use some BMI miles and book the Hilton at Manchester airport for free, as well as getting the train to the airport for £8 each way by playing with splitting the fare (usually £24 each way). I also signed up for the viaMilano scheme to get me free insurance for my connection and free lounge access at MXP.

    By the time I'd finished, I had almost 16,000 miles, 3 nights away, travel to the airport, lounge access at MXP and SIN and 6-9 flights (including 3 new types) for under £180, which I thought was pretty reasonable!

    Here is the finalised itinerary:

    20/10/2012 07:15-10:30 MAN-MXP FlyBE BE7354 E195
    20/10/2012 15:15-16:30 MXP-FCO Alitalia AZ1027 E175
    20/10/2012 18:00-20:10 FCO-CDG Air France AF1905 A320
    20/10/2012 23:20-18:15* CDG-SIN Air France AF256 A388
    21/10/2012 23:00-06:10* SIN-CDG Air France AF257 A388
    22/10/2012 07:45-08:15 CDG-MAN Air France AF1668 A321

    With a backup plan of the following flights:

    22/10/2012 09:50-11:30 CDG-TRN Air France AF1402 RJ85
    22/10/2012 12:40-14:10 TRN-BRI Alitalia AZ1640 A319
    22/10/2012 20:50-22:45 BRI-STN Ryanair FR1906 B738

    On a map, my route looked like this:


    It wasn't long before the date of my adventure came around, and after work on the Friday night I was kindly dropped off at Meadowhall, Sheffield by my wife for me to get the train over to Manchester Airport. There was a huge police presence around the city (even more so than normal), I later found out this was due to a football match going on there.

    My train to Manchester Airport seemed to stop at every stop on the way, and my trip was almost over before it had started at Manchester Piccadilly. The train suddenly emptied as everyone got off there, and I used the opportunity to hop back a row to an empty row of seats. After a few moments, I noticed I'd left my wallet on the row in front. The chap opposite noticed my look of panic, and told me that a lady had just got on the train, saw my wallet and taken it across the platform to the lost property office! I grabbed my bag and legged it off the train, conscious that the train would only be stationary for a couple of minutes. I told the lady that it was mine, even showing her my photo ID within to prove it was me. We both ran back to the train to continue our conversation, when I got the chance to thank her for being so honest. I really don't know what I would have done without my wallet, other than cancel the whole trip, so I was very grateful!

    A few stops after my panic, we arrived into Manchester Airport and I walked to my hotel for the night, the Hilton. I checked in and to my pleasant surprise found out that breakfast was included in my free room, and was served from 04:30 so I'd have time to grab something before setting off in the morning.

    My room at the Hilton. Not bad for free!

    I set my alarm for 4:45 to ensure I'd have plenty of time to get to the airport and try and change my seat from the aisle seat I'd been assigned at online check-in. FlyBE's online check in is terrible, when you book they try to sell you seat reservations for £6, which I'd been expecting at check-in. When I came to check in, rather than give me the opportunity to purchase the seat I'd like, it simply assigned me an aisle seat that I couldn't change.

    I had a restless night's sleep in anticipation of my forthcoming journey, and woke before my alarm. I grabbed a shower and headed down to grab some breakfast, a continental affair which was all i fancied at 5 in the morning! As I checked out I noticed the free shuttle to the terminal was waiting outside, so I hopped on and asked if he could take me to Terminal 3. 'No problem' he said, and off we went across the airport to Terminal 3. It's only a few hundred yards, but figured as there was a bus waiting I'd just take it.

    I walked into the airport and headed for FlyBE check in, who were happy to assign me a window seat. I then headed through security which was running very efficiently, despite the early morning bucket and spade flights all about to leave.

    Once through to airside I found a nice spot by the window and watched the early morning flights heading out.

    Before too long the gate was displayed for my flight, and I headed down to find my ERJ being loaded awaiting our flight to Milan.

    G-FBEF on the stand at Manchester

    We were soon called for boarding which took place down some stairs and involved a nice walk across the ramp in the crisp, cold early morning air.

    Boarding the ERJ to Milan

    Date:20 October 2012
    Airline: Flybe
    Flight Number: BE7354
    From: Manchester (MAN)
    To: Milan Malpensa (MXP)
    Aircraft: Embraer ERJ-195
    Registration: G-FBEF
    STD/ATD: 07:15 / 07:21
    STA/ATA: 10:30 / 10:08
    Flight Time: 1:47

    This is my 216th flight. It's my 4th flight with Flybe, my 4th Embraer flight and my first flight on the ERJ-195.

    G-FBEF is Flybe's 6th 195, and was delivered new from Embraer on 8 September 2007, making her 5 years old.

    We were welcomed aboard by the friendly crew, and I found my way to my seat for this sector, 19A. This was at the back of the wing. My first impression of the E-Jet was that it is very modern and comfortable, but the windows are very high compared to other aircraft making them a little awkward to look out of.

    The aircraft initially seemed quite empty but my optimism was soon shattered as the aircraft filled up. A few rows behind me were a group of Italian teenagers who were far too rowdy for this time of the morning, and sat opposite was a large family with small children.

    We were welcomed aboard initially by the purser, and then by our captain Graham Price. He advised that we would be departing to the southwest this morning, cruising at 31,000ft. Flight time today would be around 1:45 and the weather in Milan was presently 6C and sunny.

    We pushed back as the safety briefing commenced, and the CF34 engines started to rumble into life. We taxied out to runway 23L. The airport was pretty quiet this morning and we had a direct taxi out without having to hold short. The captain called 'Cabin crew seats for takeoff', and we powered along runway 23L for departure.

    Click here for Departure video

    As we rotated, a scream eminated from one of the children opposite. 'Daddy!' she screamed. 'I'm scared of heights!'. A little late to announce that now kid, I thought

    It was a beautiful morning as the sun was just starting to creep above the horizon. We were soon above the clouds which looked stunning in the morning light.

    The crew announced that they would soon be commencing food service, with coffees being sold under the Starbucks name which I found quite interesting.

    Climbing to FL310, sun just creeping above the horizon

    Cloud starting to get more overcast as we headed further south

    I never get tired of seeing the sun rise from high altitude.

    I started to read through the Flybe in-flight magazine, which had an interesting interview with Ray Winstone in it. This is perhaps the first time I've read an in-flight magazine cover to cover, and was so engrossed in it that I completely missed the trolley service coming round!

    View of the cabin

    Down below, the cloud was soon completely overcast, and the ride started to get quite bumpy, to the extent that ths fasten seatbelt sign came on and remained on for much of the flight.

    Overhead France somewhere, getting quite bumpy.

    Still overhead France

    Some beautiful clouds

    Making a slight turn overhead France

    The cloud finally broke up as we approached the border with Switzerland, just in time to give us a great view of Lake Geneva and the Alps, where I visited a few years ago.

    Lake Geneva

    Lake Geneva, City of Lausanne in the top right hand corner

    The Alps

    Some mountains, Lake Geneva behind them

    By this time, much of the aircraft had climbed to the windows to get a view of the Alps, which looked stunning this morning in the clear skies.


    More Alps


    Our winglet with some mountains behind

    Once we had cleared the mountains, the captain came on to announce we'd begin our descent to Milan in around 60 miles, or about 2-3 minutes. The weather had warmed significantly in Milan and it was now 12C. We'd be making an approach to runway 35R in Milan this morning. Sure enough, within a couple of minutes he came on to announce 'Cabin crew top of descent', and the engines throttled back as we started to head back down to earth.

    Commencing our approach over Northern Italy

    Making a left turn as we commenced our approach, with the Italian Alps in the background

    We commenced a series of turns as we got closer to Milan. The cabin crew secured the cabin and I was surprised to see so many airports in the Milan area, all with almost parallel runways.

    The approach was relatively smooth, and we touched down smoothly around 20 minutes early.

    Click here for landing video

    We taxied in to the main ramp to a remote stand, with a SAS A321 touching down from Copenhagen just behind us.

    As we waited to disembark, a United 767 taxied out behind us:

    UA45, Boeing 767-400 N78060, taxying out for the flight to Newark

    I disembarked, bidding farewell to the crew and entering the bus that was waiting for us. This gave me the chance to snap a nice picture of our ride out here from Manchester:

    Our ride from Manchester on the ground at Milan

    The bus took us at speed towards the terminal, dropping us off at the non-Schengen area. I headed to passport control which was fairly quick and painless, and exited into the arrivals area.

    First things first, I had to find check in for my flight to Singapore. Alitalia had managed to check me in online but only as far as Paris. It then said that AF256 routes Rome to Singapore, and wouldn't check me in.

    After a while of searching the terminal, I found the Alitalia check in desks, surprisingly with only one open for 'Sky Priority' passengers. I was met by a stern-faced Italian lady, to whom I provided my passport.

    'You are already checked in.' she said, sternly. 'I know, but I was unable to print my boarding pass and it only checked me in as far as Paris' I replied. 'You travelling business class?' she asked. 'No, economy' I replied. She tapped frantically at her keyboard before thrusting two boarding passes at me, one to Rome and one to Paris. 'Are you able to check me in for the remainder of the flight to Singapore?' I enquired. 'You are checked in' was the unhelpful response.

    I figured I'd give up with this and with attempting to get a window seat on my FCO-CDG flight, as the representative clearly didn't want to be dealing with me. I headed for the Air France check in machines, to try and check in for my flight to Singapore there. I entered my reference number and passport details, and it returned a flight from Paris to Nantes! I figured I'd give this up as a bad job, and try to check in at Paris.

    I decided to head outside to get some fresh air to at least be able to say I'd stepped outside the airport in Milan, but the taxi ramp outside was full of taxi drivers smoking so it wasn't exactly fresh air!

    I went back inside and decided to head through security, to somewhere where I may be able to at least get a view of the ramp. Security was easy and I emerged into the shopping area. Every shop here was designer, you name the designer fashion label, and they surely have a shop here! I wanted to try and find a bar to grab a beer, but couldn't find any that sold alcohol.

    Instead, I found a little shop selling pizza and pasta, and indulged myself in a slice of pizza and a Diet Coke, whilst watching some weird Italian cookery show.

    Pizza duly consumed, I found myself a little row of seats that had a reasonable view over the ramp, and of both runways. There was an Ethiopian 757 in as well as an Antonov 124.

    Ethiopian 757 and a Wizz Air A320

    By this time I'd forgotten about the 'ViaMilano' offer that allowed me free lounge access at Milan, so I went to an information counter to ask about this. Once more I was greeted by a rather stern lady, who after numerous phone calls and frantic typing said that I'd have to go back to landside, to the ViaMilano desk, then come back through security again. There was enough time, but I couldn't be bothered with the hassle, so I decided to wait a bit longer for the gate to be announced.

    Sure enough, the gate was announced fairly soon and I made my way down some stairs to a little annexe, where presumably the remote stands depart from, judging by the bus bays outside the doors.

    An Alitalia crew were amongst the passengers for today's flight to Rome, the captain looking like a typical Italian (if there is such a thing), shoulder length hair, huge pair of Ray-Bans and a pin sharp suit with epaulettes.

    A bus pulled up at the gate and the driver got out, and started banging the window to alert the gate agent.

    The agent eventually noticed him, and called for boarding. There weren't many people here, I'd counted maybe 25 in the gate area, and even allowing for late arrivals I guessed it wouldn't be too full today. Most of the passengers seemed to be non-Italians connecting to other flights, with the exception of several Italian government officials seated in business class.

    We got on the bus and headed across the ramp to the remote stand where our aircraft was waiting. The doors were still closed so we had to wait while the driver went up the aircraft steps to knock on the door and advise the crew we were there.

    He came back down and we filed off the bus and up the steps to the door.

    Date:20 October 2012
    Airline: Alitalia
    Flight Number: AZ1027
    From: Milan Malpensa (MXP)
    To: Rome Fiumicino (FCO)
    Aircraft: Embraer ERJ-175
    Registration: EI-RDE
    STD/ATD: 15:15 / 15:17
    STA/ATA: 16:30 / 16:04
    Flight Time: 0:47

    Boarding the E-Jet to Rome

    This is my 217th flight. It's my first with Alitalia, my first ERJ-175 and my 5th Embraer flight.

    This aircraft is named 'Parco Nazionale dell'Etna', and was delivered brand new to Alitalia just six months ago, on 18 April 2012. Since then it has spent most of its time flying domestically within Italy, occasionally travelling further afield.

    I was welcomed aboard by another stern-faced Alitalia employee, before turning right and taking my seat in 2A. The seats were a little more comfortable than on the Flybe aircraft, and the aircraft felt noticably newer.

    The captain welcomed us aboard in Italian and then English, advising simply that our flight time to Rome would be around 45 minutes, and the weather there was sunny and 24C.

    The doors were closed and the safety briefing and cabin check took place pretty quickly, the flight attendant being back in her seat before we even started taxying.

    We taxied pretty speedily towards runway 35R, before lining up on the runway and immediately taking off.

    Click here for departure video

    Takeoff felt very powerful on this aircraft, and we'd commenced a right turn before we'd even got as far as the airport fence! We climbed round to the right, and right again, and once on downwind leg even more power was applied as I felt the aircraft climb even steeper! This aircraft really is sporty, especially when half empty like today.

    We got a great view of Milan as we climbed out of Malpensa.

    Climbing out of Malpensa over northern Milan


    One of MIlan's lesser-known airports, Bresso

    Downtown Milan

    Milan's other main airport, Linate

    Overview of Milan with the Alps in the background

    It didn't take long for our pocket-rocket to get us to FL310, where we sat for the remainder of today's flight. The flight attendant came around handing out little packets of crackers, and I just sat back and enjoyed the view. We had amazing clear skies for the entire flight down to Rome.

    Here's the route we took:

    Winglet of our aircraft and a funny shaped cloud

    Typical scenery for today's flight

    Somewhere to the east of Pisa

    To the east of Pisa

    Cool viaduct east of Grosseto

    Italian countryside west of Perugia

    I was surprised just how hilly and mountainous Italy is. I'd never been to Italy before today and didn't really know what to expect it to look like, so it was interesting to see from above.

    All of a sudden, the spoilers extended and I felt the aircraft slow down significantly. The aircraft was in a nose down position and the ground was getting closer so fast, it felt like we were in an elevator! 'Cabin crew, seats for landing' came the announcement from the flight deck within a few moments of begining descent.

    Lake Bolsena in the distance

    We had a straight-in approach to runway 16L today, and as we got closer to the ground our shadow turned from a halo on the ground to a sharp outline of our E-Jet as we crossed the threshold of Fiumicino.

    Click here for arrival video

    With a slight bounce we were down on runway 16L at Rome, and the third flight of my adventure was complete. We taxied in past rows and rows of Alitalia aircraft, so many in fact that I was convinced most of their fleet was sat here at Rome awaiting flights! Their old fleet of MD-82s sat on various maintenance pans, and I spied a couple sitting at gates operating flights. Within a week their fate would be sealed too, as they get replaced with newer equipment.

    We pulled onto a gate next to an Alitalia A319, and for the first time this weekend I was able to exit the aircraft via a jetway rather than on steps, luxury!

    I entered the terminal building and checked the screen for my next flight. I only had 90 minutes until my next flight, so found an Air France desk and asked if I'd be able to check in for my flight to Singapore, and if possible change my middle seat on the next sector for a window. 'Of course' she said, and not only checked me in all the way to Singapore, but back as far as Turin as well (the first sector I was hoping not to have to use). 'You have your return flight here as well, as far as Turin' she said. By this time there were no window seats left as the flight was full, however she offered me an aisle seat which I took. Finally a helpful member of staff, and it felt good to be on familiar territory, dealing with Air France as well.

    I headed back to the gate, just as our aircraft arrived from Paris.

    Our A320 arriving from Paris

    The flight deplaned into the same gate area we were waiting in, something I found a little unusual. The flight had an unusual mix of people on today (although given the proximity of The Vatican perhaps to be expected). There were a large group of nuns returning to Paris, as well as around 40 people on a religious pilgrimage tour, which in themselves accounted for around a third of the aircraft. Aside from the religious passengers, the passengers consisted mostly of French tourists returning from a few days in Rome.

    We were soon called for boarding, and after my boarding card was checked I made my way down the airbridge to the waiting A320.

    Date:20 October 2012
    Airline: Air France
    Flight Number: AF1905
    From: Rome Fiumicino (FCO)
    To: Paris Charles-de-Gaulle (CDG)
    Aircraft: Airbus A320
    Registration: F-GJVW
    STD/ATD: 18:00 / 18:11
    STA/ATA: 20:00 / 19:48
    Flight Time: 1:37

    This is my 218th flight. It's my 5th flight on Air France, my 6th A320 and my 26th Airbus flight.

    This aircraft was delivered to Air Inter back in 1994, and joined Air France in 1997, making it slightly over 18 years old.

    'Bonne soir' wished the friendly flight attendant as I boarded. 'Bonne soir' I replied. Cabin crew were placed strategically down the aisle, each one wishing me 'Bonne soir' as I passed. I took my seat in 20C, the first time in a long while I've not had a window seat. I was a little apprehensive as I am actually quite a nervous flyer when I can't see what's happening out of the window, but decided to at least give it a go and hopefully sleep on the short flight up to Paris.

    Despite being painted in Air France's new livery and look sharp and modern on the outside, inside was a different story. The seats were sagging, the interior looking very dated. After all, the aircraft is 18 years old.

    My seat mates arrived, an older couple returning to Paris from a short break in Rome.

    The captain welcomed us aboard in French and English, the safety briefing started, and before I realised we had our engines running and were taxying to the runway. I believe we taxied to runway 16R, from the limited glimpses I had out of the window. I was starting to get very nervous as I felt the aircraft rock and sway on the way to the runway. I just held on for dear life as I felt the engines throttle up for departure.

    It felt like we rocketed into the sky. Foolishly, I tried to look out of the opposite window just after takeoff, trying to get a glimpse of my bearings. However, at this point we were maybe a couple of hundred feet above the water, and in a steep right hand turn. With the perspective from my seat, I could only see a window full of the Mediterranean, with a few boats flying past very quickly. I gripped the seat even harder and closed my eyes. Although I've flown hundreds of times, it felt like this would be the one time my luck would run out, and all because I couldn't see out of the window. If I'd have been able to see, I'd have known full well we'd have been fine!

    Fortunately we soon levelled off and the crew began their service. 'Could I have a beer please' I asked, 'Certainly sir' came the response, and I was presented with a crisp cold can of Heineken. Shortly afterwards, a second service came around with the choice of a sweet or savoury snack. The beer took effect fairly quickly, and I started to relax, even managing a little sleep.

    Our route this evening, that I didn't get to see.

    The captain announced we'd shortly be commencing our descent into Paris, where it was currently 12C and foggy. Before too long we'd began our descent into the Paris area. Looking across to the other row you couldn't really see much, just the strobe light illuminating the fog around our aircraft. I was even more nervous about the arrival than the take-off, as with the fog I wouldn't see anything at all even if I could get a glimpse out of the window. I needn't have bothered about that though, as people were sat with their faces to the window blocking them, so I wouldn't have seen in any case. I felt the gear come down and the cabin crew took their seats. We bumped and wobbled, bounced and dropped down the approach path, before I felt us touch down and the reversers kicked in.

    We had a lengthy taxi into Aerogare 2F at Paris, but we got there in the end and one of the few benefits of an aisle seat made itself clear, as I could get straight up and grab my bag, before making my way to the front of the aircraft, wishing farewell to the purser and the captain who stood at the door, and making my way into the terminal.

    I was unsure how to proceed from 2F to 2E for my next flight, as I've only ever done 2F to 2G before which was a nightmare. I was looking forward to some fresh air and walking across outside, however the signs took me through a maze of underground corridors that eventually bought me out at another security checkpoint for Terminal 2E. The walk took around 10 minutes, security another 5 minutes or so, and I emerged into the gate area for the annexe of 2E where the A380s lie.

    I turned a corner, and there, in front of me, was the reason for my trip, sitting on stand and awaiting her flight to the other side of the world.

    The behemoth awaits.

    The scene around the aircraft reminded me of the opening scene of the 'Airplane' movies. Vans and lorries bustled around the aircraft. Baggage carts snaked around the stand, men in yellow jackets ran around the stand keeping everything in order. Passengers lined up at the windows taking photos of the aircraft. There was just something in the air, a real buzz, that I don't think I've ever seen to this extent since flying.

    The desk at the gate was more like a hotel check-in desk, there were four positions checking boarding cards.

    There was still an hour or so until boarding would commence (itself 40 minutes before departure time), so I decided to wander around the terminal and take a few photos to stretch my legs one last time before departure.

    I headed back across to my gate which was now preparing for boarding.

    Tonight's flight details

    The flight hadn't been announced as boarding yet, but I noticed that a couple of people had started to walk through the queue barriers and form a queue. I let a couple more join them before deciding that they couldn't send all of us back, so followed them to the end of the queue. Even more people saw us and within a couple of minutes, there was a queue of 50 or so people diligently following us to form a queue. The gate agent looked up and clearly wasn't expecting this influx, and began waving her arms and shouting for people to stop joining the queue, but being in the queue already, we all just stayed where we were. She ran over to close the queue at the back end to stop more people joining the queue.

    Before long the flight was opened for boarding, and all four gate agents opened their gates and we made our way onto the A380 in its own unique boarding style. There were two different doors to go through depending on what deck you were on. We had to go up an escalator, then across a bridge to the upper deck of the A380.

    Up the escalator

    Onto the airbridge

    Entering the beast in front of the massive wing

    Date:20 October 2012
    Airline: Air France
    Flight Number: AF256
    From: Paris Charles-de-Gaulle (CDG)
    To: Singapore Changi (SIN)
    Aircraft: Airbus A380-800
    Registration: F-HPJG
    STD/ATD: 23:20 / 00:04
    STA/ATA: 18:15 / 17:50
    Flight Time: 11:46

    This is my 219th flight. It's my 6th flight on Air France, my first ever A380 and my 27th Airbus flight.

    F-HPJG was delivered brand new to Air France in June 2012, making her just four months old. Inside and out, she was still gleaming as brand new. Her first commercial flight, on 7 June, was on this very flight - AF256 Paris to Singapore.

    I was greeted by a friendly flight attendant at the front of the first class cabin. 'Bonne-soir monsieur'. I showed her my boarding pass. 'To the other side and turn right please sir'. Every flight attendant had a smile, and I felt truly welcome onboard. It felt like first class treatment, even though I was travelling in the little enclave of economy class at the back of the upper deck.

    I walked through first class, then business class, then premium economy, before finally finding my place at the back of the upper deck!

    I found my seat, 89L, which had a blanket and a pillow on it. Mine was the back row before the rear door, so I had nobody immediately behind me. The seat was pretty comfortable, with a nice storage locker down the side which every window seat had. This was useful for keeping everything in instead of under the seat in front.

    Quite a decent size, very deep and plenty of room for everything.

    The windows were amazing. It felt a little like sitting on a space ship, with blue mood lighting illuminating the inside, and a small porthole angled slightly upwards. Very cool. I'd feared they would be poor for photography, however they aren't at all - and actually make the whole flight experience simply brilliant.

    The upper-deck windows. No problem for photography as I'd feared.

    We were scheduled for departure at 23:20, however at 23:35 the captain came on and introduced him as Capt Francois Garcon (quite possibly the most French name I've heard!). He welcomed us aboard this Air France A380 with service to Singapore. Flight time would be approximately 11:55, cruising initially at 35,000ft. Captain Garcon apologised for the delay to this evening's flight, which was due to the A380 taking so long to be refuelled. We would use 155 tonnes of fuel this evening, but were having 175 tonnes uplifted to cater for all eventualities. There were some favourable winds forecast en-route, so he was hoping to make up for this time on the way.

    A German couple were seated in front of me, who seemed to be off on holiday to Singapore. They were all over each other, taking photographs of themselves in all sorts of weird and wonderful positions. I hoped this wouldn't last for the entire flight! Next to me was a Malaysian chap who said hello when he first boarded, but then didn't speak for the rest of the flight. I was happy with that

    The cabin crew came around offering water while we waited for the aircraft to finish being refuelled.

    Finally, around 30 minutes after our scheduled departure, the tug was connected and we began our pushback. The safety briefing commenced and we were on our way. The engines started, although it was almost impossible to hear them above the music being played, they were so quiet! The LCD screens throughout the cabin all came alive, showing a live feed from the tail camera.

    The taxi once again was very smooth, it hardly felt like we were moving, were it not for the occasional bump, bump as the nosewheel went over the taxiway lights.

    The captain soon called 'Cabin crew, prepare for takeoff' (in French), and the screens showed us lining up on runway 08L.

    The engines spooled up, and at this point one really feels the power the A380 packs. The couple in front of me had put a number of things on top of their storage locker, which came flying past me to the row behind as soon as power was applied!

    Despite the immense power, the aircraft takes an age to get up to rotation speed, especially with fuel for a 12 hour flight ahead. After what seemed like forever, we were going at a decent speed, and we gradually started to lift away from the runway. The gear came up, yet we were still only at around 50-100ft above the motorway at the end of the runway! Incredible to experience such a slow, lumbering take-off. There was no feeling of rotation like in other aircraft.

    We lumbered our way into the night sky, climbing initially to FL350. I flicked through the IFE system, however being so late at night I just wanted to get my dinner and sleep. I planned to catch a movie early in the next flight, when it would still be daytime (UK time).

    We flew towards Innsbruck, Austria, before heading down towards the Adriatic states of Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, and then into Serbia. Not that one would have been able to tell however, the thick cloud below meant all we could see was the stars above.

    Dinner was finally served around two hours into the flight. For the main course there was a choice of Beef Meatballs and rice, or spicy noodles and chicken. I chose the meatballs. This came with a cheese board, bread rolls, and a desert of fruit and some sort of cake. I took a white wine with my dinner to try and help me sleep, in combination with one of my Diazepams to ensure I slept!

    I finished my dinner and put my eye mask on with my table still down and my tray still on it.

    I must have fell asleep straight away, as I woke up several hours later overhead Iran. My tray had been cleared, my table was up, TV turned off and my window blind down. I'd obviously missed some kind FA doing this but nonetheless it was much appreciated. It was dark in the cabin, all the window blinds were down. I noticed my storage locker had popped open, so I tried to shut it. In the darkness, I thought the German guy in front had put his pillow there, so I tried several times to slam it down, to no avail. However, what I thought was his pillow just happened to be his head, he'd fallen asleep across his partner with his head under my lid. Oops! I just pretended to be asleep and he moved so I could shut it

    I opened the window a crack to see broad daylight outside, and started to doze off - but an FA came past and pulled it down again. I decided to enjoy the view on my TV instead.

    Heading into India just off the Pakistani coast near Karachi

    The cabin crew walked through the cabin with leftover ice creams from Business class and offered them round, I took one which tasted lovely, despite it being only 7am UK time

    We'd climbed to FL370 by this point. The cameras showed an incredible view outside, dark sky above us and the curvature of the earth clearly visible.

    Somewhere overhead India we climbed again to FL390, crossing the country across the middle:

    As we passed into the Bay of Bengal, the cabin lights very gradually started to come on. The mood lighting on the A380 is fantastic. It took around 5 minutes to go from darkness to daylight inside the cabin. I thought this would be an opportune moment to open my window blind, as people started to wake for breakfast.

    The view from my seat

    Somewhere over the Andaman Islands

    The awesome A380 windows

    Breakfast was served somewhere over the Andaman Sea, which was continental style feature cheese, crackers and various breads, as well as orange juice and a smoothie. I took a cup of coffee with it too and chilled out for the last couple of hours of the flight.

    I felt the aircraft power up slightly, and was surprised that although we were only an hour or two from Singapore, we had climbed to FL410.

    The captain came onto the PA to wish us a very good morning, and hoping we'd had a pleasant night. We were now between Malaysia and Indonesia, with around 2 hours left to run of today's flight.

    FL410, Banda Aceh, Indonesia in the distance.

    We passed Kuala Lumpur to the left of the aircraft, before beginning our descent down towards Singapore. I'd been pleasantly surprised by the lack of turbulence over the Bay of Bengal, normally it is very choppy there.

    The crew passed around the cabin handing out immigration forms for Singapore. 'Sir, do you need an immigration form?' the guy asked. 'No thank you, I am connecting at Singapore' I replied. 'Where are you connecting to?' he asked. 'Paris' was my reply, with a wry smile on my face. 'But you are staying in Singapore at least for a night' he replied. 'No, I fly back on this aircraft, this evening' I replied, showing him my boarding pass. He looked completely bemused. 'You have a very short stay in Singapore' he said, perhaps not sure whether to be amused or worried. 'I know' I said, before he shrugged and moved on up the cabin.

    The cabin was cleared ready for arrival, and we made a series of turns on approach. The ride on approach was the smoothest I've ever experienced. It felt as though we were not moving at all, yet the scenery was still going past the window. The engines were silent, it would be possible to hold a quiet conversation quite easily.

    I was expecting the flaps to be very noisy after hearing numerous videos, but was surprised that I didn't hear them at all. Perhaps it is more noticeable on the lower deck?

    It felt surreal floating and manouvering so close to the ground with such a huge wing outside, and I was impressed by the triple-slatted flaperons that moved independently of each other.

    We came down the approach for runway 20C.

    Click here for landing video

    One thing that wasn't smooth though was the landing. I'd heard about heavy landings in A380s before so was prepared for it to be a little rough, however this landing was the heaviest I've ever experienced onboard an airliner. We slammed onto the runway before engaging maximum reverse thrust, and even with that we used most of the runway to slow enough to taxi off. The taxi in was very slow, and as usual for Singapore the aircraft steamed up on the outside as we taxied in. There was quite a queue for departure, it was obviously a very busy time for the airport.

    We finally pulled onto stand next to a JetStar A320, before the engines were shut down and we began to disembark.

    We were allowed to disembark with the business class passengers, so were among the first off the aircraft. I bid farewell to the crew and made my way into the jetway, feeling a brief moment of the Singapore humidity before I entered the air conditioned jetbridge.

    Singapore was familiar, I've passed through the airport a few times before and it is in many ways similar inside to many Asian airports. Garish carpet, piped music, palm trees and strange shops. I headed initially for an Internet terminal to try and check in for my flight from Paris to Manchester in the morning, but to no avail. The system would simply not let me check in for an Air France flight bought via Flybe. I headed for the SATS Rainforest Lounge, and paid my SGD25 for 5 hours access. The lounge was very comfortable and included a variety of local cuisine (noodles, chicken etc), soft drinks, and there was a bar to purchase alcohol. The sofas were comfortable offering a great view across the ramp (albeit dark outside now).

    I sat around for a while charging my phone and my camcorder for the next flights, and grabbed some noodles and chicken. I called Flybe to ask about checking in, and they were just as bemused as me as to why I couldn't check in. They said that 1 hour in Paris would be plenty of time to check in for my flight, so just to check in when I got there in the morning.

    I grabbed a towel and went through to the showers, which I have to say are amazing (although strangely, unisex). The cubicles are a decent size, and the shower is like standing under a torrential downpour

    Refreshed from my shower, I got changed and went back into the lounge, grabbing a nice cold Tiger beer.

    QANTAS being loaded for Brisbane outside the lounge

    Two Emirates 777s arrived from Dubai within 5 minutes

    It was soon time to say goodbye to the comfortable lounge, and make my way back towards the same gate I'd arrived through a few hours earlier.

    Walking back to the gate

    My ride back to Paris, still sitting where I'd left her.

    I was surprised that I had to go through security again at the gate to get back onboard, a process that moved quickly but nonetheless I thought it a little unusual, seeing as though even passengers originating here would have already been through security. I hadn't left airside since Milan 24 hours ago, yet this was my third security check since then!

    Very quickly again, the flight was called for boarding, upper deck first. I made my way to the gate, and handed over my boarding pass for scanning, before being handed it back and waved through to the 'Upper Deck' door.

    I made my way up the jetbridge, being welcomed on board by a different crew who directed me to my seat at the back of the upper deck again.

  • #2
    Date:21 October 2012
    Airline: Air France
    Flight Number: AF257
    From: Singapore Changi (SIN)
    To: Paris Charles-de-Gaulle (CDG)
    Aircraft: Airbus A380-800
    Registration: F-HPJG
    STD/ATD: 23:00 / 23:25
    STA/ATA: 06:15 / 05:53
    Flight Time: 12:28

    This is my 220th flight. It's my 7th flight on Air France, my 2nd A380 flight (my second on this aircraft) and my 28th Airbus flight.

    I settled into my seat, this time 92K, again with a pillow and blanket waiting for me. I was around two rows behind my seats on the way out. My seatmate arrived soon after, a lady from Singapore. The cabin crew welcomed us aboard this evening's flight, followed by a welcome aboard message from the captain, Capt Thierry Fabrice. Tonight's flight would take approximately 12h30, and was expected to be a smooth ride.

    Once again, we were advised by the captain to keep our seatbelts unfastened as we were still fuelling, which would cause a slight delay. One wonders why they can't think of how long it takes to refuel an aircraft of this size before they start to fill it!

    Refuelling was soon complete however, and we pushed back from the gate just 14 minutes after our scheduled departure time, at 23:14. The engines were started, the TV screens flashed briefly, and then nothing happened. We could hear the safety briefing taking place on the lower deck, but nothing happened up here, so the cabin crew performed a very quick briefing manually. The taxi was very short, as we headed out to runway 20C on a very quiet evening traffic-wise. The cabin crew took their seats for take-off, but just as we lined up onto the runway, the flight attendant in our cabin jumped out of his seat, and ran to the rear galley to fasten something down. He started to run back to his seat, but the flight crew had already applied thrust for takeoff while he was running back to his seat! He got back to his seat OK though, no doubt with his heart going ten to the dozen!

    Click here for departure video

    It was once again a very powerful initial takeoff roll, culminating in a long ride along the runway, before rotating slowly at the far end and lumbering away from the airport.

    It was a thundery night, as we climbed slowly across the harbour at Singapore. The city looked beautiful tonight, shining tower blocks with a backdrop of a lightning-filled sky.

    We made our initial climb to FL340, as we flew up the Strait of Malacca towards Penang. I got a great view of the island of Penang, which bought back some memories of our great holiday there a few years ago. I decided to start watching a movie, as it was actually only 4pm in the UK, so I figured I could watch a couple of movies and then go to sleep at my regular, UK time. I watched 'Seeking a Friend for the End of the World', a funny yet touching movie with Steve Carell and Keira Knightley. While this was on, dinner was served. It was a choice of Beef Curry or fish, I opted for the beef curry with red wine. The red wine served on Air France is delicious, and went down very well with the Camembert cheese they served with dinner. In fact, it was so nice that I asked for a second bottle which went down equally as nice.

    The cabin on tonight's flight

    The movie ended in what seemed like no time at all, by which time we were just off the coast of Thailand. I decided to head to the shop at the rear of the upper deck to try and buy a toy for my little boy and a model for me. The crew were stood chatting in the rear galley, but happily served me. Unfortunately they'd sold out of the teddy I'd hoped to have bought, but they did have an abundance of A380 models, so I decided to pick one up. I said thanks and headed back to my seat.

    I had a flick through the movies to try and watch a second. There was nothing recent I fancied watching, so settled on 'Back to the Future'. I've seen it a few times before, but it was a nice easy watch. Unfortunately I missed most of it, as I fell asleep just after Marty McFly arrived in 1955, and woke up as he was arriving back to 1985, so it was a little pointless. By this time however, we were a couple of hours further on, and now approaching Delhi, India, and now cruising at FL360.

    Delhi looked amazing lit up.

    Delhi lit up at night, with just a touch of fog

    It was very strange, looking down at some of the most impoverished areas on the planet, as I sat here at FL360 on my way home. I wondered how many people down there were looking up, at our tiny set of lights and faint rumble in the sky, wishing they were onboard this aircraft heading somewhere different.

    I decided to try and stay awake as far as Kabul, to hopefully get a photo of Lahore and Kabul lit up at night. I saw the following strange building in the middle of nowhere, somewhere near the Indian/Pakistani border:

    Very strange, I guessed it was some sort of military camp or maybe a prison.

    My hopes of staying awake as far as Kabul were shot, as the next thing I remember was waking up several hours later and waking up here:

    I have no idea how I managed to sleep for so long, it's the longest I'd ever had onboard an airliner. I am convinced the low cabin altitude, almost silent cabin and smooth ride are to credit for this - as the seat was far from the comfiest I've travelled in. We were now at FL380, and back in Europe.

    I'd done well to sleep until this far, as the cabin mood lighting started to fade up as we approached Budapest, and the captain came over the PA to wish us a very good morning, and he hoped we'd had a pleasant night's sleep. We had a little under three hours to go until our arrival in Paris, which was expected to be on time.

    The crew soon came through serving breakfast, once again in the continental style. I enjoyed cheese and crackers, cold meats and bread rolls, a smoothie and some orange juice. I also had a 'cafe noir', and a top up when they came back!

    The remainder of the flight I spent looking out of the window. We climbed to FL400 somewhere over Austria, even though we weren't far from beginning our approach.

    We flew to the south of Bratislava and Vienna, where I'd spent a couple of weeks earlier in the year. It felt good to be heading home and seeing them only briefly in passing as we flew past!

    As we approached the French/German border, we commenced our descent into Paris. The cabin crew secured the cabin for landing, and our beast of an aircraft commenced a series of turns towards the airport. The approach was once again silky smooth and silent, followed by a very hard landing as we 'arrived' around 20 minutes ahead of schedule.

    That 20 minutes was soon taken up by our lengthy taxi to the terminal, however. An on-time arrival was crucial to my connection here in Paris. It was very tight, at only 1h30m. In this time, I had a deplane from the back of the upper deck on an A380, connect through one of the most notorious airports in Europe, check in for my next flight, and get to the gate.

    As we pulled on stand, I was already ready to get out of my seat. Fortunately First and Business class were offloaded first, and we were able to tag on to the back of them as we deplaned, before the lower deck. It surprised me that we did not have an upstairs airbridge on stand here this time, and at the front of First Class we had to walk down the stairs to the lower deck, past the flight deck, and off the aircraft there. I was onto the airbridge within 5 minutes of engines being shut down, which I was quite impressed by, as I said goodbye to the crew on the door.

    Next it was into the airport, walking at a fast pace following signs for connections. I had to get on a little underground train, which took a further 5-10 minutes to get to the main area of Aerogare 2E. There, I found the Air France transfer desk. There was no queue, and I asked if I could check in here for my next flight. She seemed to have some trouble finding my reservation, which worried me slightly. At this time, I was effectively booked on two AF flights out of Paris - one to Turin and on to Bari, and the one I was desperate to get, back to Manchester. I really didn't want to spend the rest of the day travelling back to Italy, so was hoping she didn't notice the flight back to Italy and just let me check in to Manchester. 'Here you go sir' she said, handing me my boarding pass, as I breathed a sigh of relief. 'Although you will need to show them your flight ticket with the boarding pass' she said, pointing to a line at the bottom of the boarding pass that read 'INVALID WITHOUT FLIGHT COUPON ATTACHED'. I had an E-Ticket. Hmm, how was this going to work then. I didnít fancy stapling my phone to my boarding pass. I followed the signs for the gates, to be confronted with a massive queue for security. By this time it was 6:45, my flight to Manchester was due to board at 7:15. Great.

    I spent the first few minutes in the queue on my phone, Googling what this text on my boarding pass meant. It turns out to be related to flying when you have somebody with exactly the same name, travelling on different flights on the same day. That would tie perfectly up to my situation then. 'Don't worry', read most of the results, 'It only takes them a couple of hours to rectify it at the airport normally'. A couple of hours??? I only had 30 minutes, and that's if I managed to get through security in time!

    The queue moved very slowly. Many passengers had just arrived from the African flights, and were connecting into Europe. They all had short connections like myself, and periodically an airport representative came along the queue asking for short connections. Time moved on, I didn't. It got to 7:05, and I decided the next time the lady came around I'd put my hand up. 'No problem sir' she said, lifting the barrier to let me through. This was no benefit though, as there were 6 Russian people in front of me in my designated lane, each one getting selected for a pat down or to go through their bags. 7:10, I finally managed to put my bag on the belt. I walked through, didn't get patted, grabbed my bag and started to rush. 'Sir! Sir!' I looked around. 'You have to stop sir, we need to look in your bag!'. Great, this was all I needed. She went through my bag, looking at the screen. It seemed my A380 model acquired on the aircraft looked a little like a knife when still not put together.

    She took my model and went to scan it through the machine again. It finally came out, and a lengthy discussion was had in French between her and her superior. Finally, she handed my model back, with no smile or word of thanks. It was now 7:14, and I was running to my gate. Fortunately, my next flight departed from the first gate so there wasn't far to run. They were just opening the flight for boarding.

    I went to the counter and explained about my boarding pass. 'Ah it's no problem sir, the booking has come through now, and I have your new boarding pass here already printed'. Phew, what a relief!

    She scanned my boarding card, wished me a pleasant flight, and I headed down the jetbridge, stopping only to make a note of the registration I was about to fly on.

    Date:22 October 2012
    Airline: Air France
    Flight Number: AF1668
    From: Paris Charles-de-Gaulle (CDG)
    To: Manchester (MAN)
    Aircraft: Airbus A321-200
    Registration: F-GTAS
    STD/ATD: 07:45 / 08:12
    STA/ATA: 08:15 / 08:11
    Flight Time: 00:59

    This is my 221st flight. It's my 8th flight on Air France, my 5th A321 flight, and my 29th Airbus flight.

    This aircraft, F-GTAS, was delivered new to Air France on 3 March 2008. Unlike my last short-haul Air France flight a couple of days ago, this was in the old colour scheme, but conversely the inside was very smart and new.

    I was wished a good morning by the crew, again very friendly. This is one thing I love about Air France - the crew are always so friendly and professional. I made my way to my seat, 28F. No pillow or blanket this time, for the last short hop, but I didn't mind. I was on my way home.

    Our captain today was Capt Patrique Vallier. He made a very brief welcome announcement, but I wasn't really bothered. I was just pleased to be on the home straight.

    We had to wait while some baggage was being loaded. This was French efficiency at its best. A series of small vans turned up, and queued, while a man stood at the bottom of the loading ramp and took out a single bag from each of them, passed it to another guy who scanned the barcode, who then passed it to another guy who put it on the ramp, which went to another guy in the hold arranging the bags. This happened for every single van, each one containing only a single bag.

    Eventually they had finished this farce, and the door was closed ready for our pushback. There was a baby a few rows back screaming the aircraft down, the crew dealt with it in typical friendly and sympathetic fashion. A safety briefing took place, as we pushed back for departure. I was on my way!

    We taxied to runway 08L, which was quite a long way as is standard for this sprawling airport. However we were soon on our way, and lifting off into a beautiful sunny morning.

    Click here for departure video

    What a beautiful morning it was, the sunrise complimenting the amazing sound of the engines, as we climbed away from Paris and headed towards home.

    Some traffic overhead as we climb away from CDG

    Sun just starting to creep above the horizon

    Climbing over northern France

    The crew came around offering breakfast, a typical French affair with a choice of croissants, choc-au-pain or apple slice. I took an apple slice and a cafe-noir. It was one of those perfect flights, relaxing with a lovely breakfast whilst watching a perfect sunrise.

    We climbed to FL310 for the short flight today, which took us north towards Calais, across the Channel to the east of London, up to Leicester and into Manchester.

    From this point on, I will let the pictures do the talking, as this is my experience of this entire flight. Sat, looking out the window, at the magnificent sunrise and cloud formations down below. Enjoy.

    And there is the sun - not seen since I was in Singapore some 18 hours ago.

    Starting to cloud over, passing over the English coast

    Lufthansa A330 inbound to Germany from Boston, USA

    Beneath this cloud is a fogbound Heathrow, with lots of cancelled flights

    Somewhere just north of London beneath the cloud

    What a beautiful morning up here.

    Just beginning our descent into Manchester, overhead Leicester

    My fun above the clouds had to end sooner or later, and before long the captain announced top of descent somewhere near Leicester. This was one of those days when you were truly in a world of your own above the clouds, in the beautiful sunshine while people just a couple of miles below you were enduring miserable, rainy, foggy commutes to work in the Monday morning rush hour. I could have stayed up here all day.

    About to say goodbye to the sunshine

    Goodbye sunny weather

    We entered the cloud where it became quite bumpy for a little bit. After a short time, we emerged into a wonderful position in the clouds - positioned directly between two layers of cloud, in our own little pocket of heaven.

    The sight that sent a shiver down my spine. How wonderful.

    This moment of wonder didn't last for more than 30 seconds or so, before we entered a thick bank of cloud overhead Derbyshire, commencing our approach into Manchester. We initially held at the DAYNE holding point, near Buxton, Derbyshire, as is to be expected for a morning arrival into Manchester. We then exited the hold after one circuit in the cloud, towards Macclesfield, before turning right towards an approach for the ILS to runway 05R. It's not too common for arrivals to land on this runway, and only the second time I've ever landed on 05R. Nonetheless it was familiar territory, and we commenced the standard approach over the detached houses and swimming pools of the well-to-do Knutsford, Cheshire, before making a smooth approach down to the the threshold.

    Click here for landing video

    We touched down smoothly on runway 05R, the very same piece of tarmac that I had taken off from just 48 hours previously, before travelling halfway around the world and back. We taxied off towards the terminal, pulling on stand a few minutes ahead of schedule. One last piece of immaculate timekeeping by one of the best airlines in Europe.

    My last ride of the weekend, sitting on stand at Manchester about to head back to Paris.

    I grabbed my bag and headed off the aircraft, bidding 'au revoir' to my most hospitable crew. I headed through immigration which was quite painless, finding it very nice to hear a friendly Manchester accent asking me if I'd had a pleasant trip as she checked my passport. I had a couple of hours to kill until my train home, so decided to pass it in traditional style, on the car park roof.

    Standard morning line up at T2

    Not so standard for Manchester having diverted in due to fog elsewhere, but fairly symbolic to see the aircraft that carried bits of my A380 aircraft prior to construction.

    I got on the train back to Sheffield at 9:55, and arrived at Meadowhall just in time to meet my family for a well deserved meal and spot of shopping before heading home.

    Overall the weekend had been amazing. I'd seen some places I'd not been to before, and travelled on some amazing aircraft. Three new types in all, and 24 hours on the A380 (which felt more like 2.4 hours). It really is an incredible aircraft. So nice to fly on, comfortable, quiet and a great IFE system.

    Air France lived up to my prior experiences in being friendly, punctual, and professional. The staff really do make them a great airline to travel with, and you can't go wrong with the food they serve. The IFE on the A380 is brilliant, I wish I had more time to experience it.

    Flybe were as good as experienced too, but I have to say I much preferred the ERJ-175 to the ERJ-190. A far more sporty aircraft.

    Alitalia? Well let's just say they were Alitalia.


    • #3
      That is the coolest flight report Ive read yet. Two things stand out.

      1. Your brave enough to spend about 30 hours in the air over 2 maybe 3 days

      2. You have a wife that must be really really understanding.


      • #4
        Originally posted by W7PSK View Post
        That is the coolest flight report Ive read yet. Two things stand out.

        1. Your brave enough to spend about 30 hours in the air over 2 maybe 3 days

        2. You have a wife that must be really really understanding.
        I was thinking of the same thing when I was reading it. That was an awesome trip report!


        • #5
          Wow! So cheap! It is the same price than the flight that I took yesterday from Leipzig to Brussels via MUC!!!!!! Amazing!!!!
          Love at the first flight

          The link shows only my last flights of these last 3 years and some of 4 years ago.


          • #6
            Hi all

            Thanks for the comments

            Originally posted by W7PSK View Post
            That is the coolest flight report Ive read yet. Two things stand out.

            1. Your brave enough to spend about 30 hours in the air over 2 maybe 3 days

            2. You have a wife that must be really really understanding.
            Lol, there got to a point as I was between flights in Singapore when I thought 'What the hell am I doing'

            And yes, she's great

            Originally posted by CcrlR View Post
            I was thinking of the same thing when I was reading it. That was an awesome trip report!

            Originally posted by Brussels Airlines View Post
            Wow! So cheap! It is the same price than the flight that I took yesterday from Leipzig to Brussels via MUC!!!!!! Amazing!!!!

            Yes it was a very good fare, the cheapest per mile I've ever paid, and I've even been credited for all my air miles!


            • #7
              Wow! You even recieve miles for that! Soo nice
              Love at the first flight

              The link shows only my last flights of these last 3 years and some of 4 years ago.


              • #8
                Thank you for sharing this entertaining trip report. I very much enjoyed reading it. You must love to fly. Just one question, how can you do this physically? Don't you have any pain in you back or you legs from sitting in you chair for so long?


                • #9
                  Wow. Thanks a lot for sharing. Would love to do something like that for the same price.