Off to London Heathrow Terminal 2… wait? T2? Aboard Lufthansa’s Flying Lab
In this adventure
- A call from Germany
- Off to Heathrow T2. Wait. Terminal 2??
- LH2473 London Heathrow to Munich Airport
- Exploring innovation on the ground at Munich Airport
- LH424 Munich to Boston with Lufthansa and Recaro Aircraft Seating
- Into Boston, The Holiday Inn Bunker Hill
- Exploring Boston
- Robot and Bowl Food – Exploring Spyce… and lessons for the Passenger Experience?
- Oodles of Noodles – Pho and Ramen in Boston
- The APEX Conference and Expo – What you missed
- Back to Boston Logan International airport
- LH423 Boston Logan to Frankfurt am main
- The joy of Frankfurt Airport
- LH924 Frankfurt to Heathrow… with a neo
- Train? Thataway.
- The outlook for the next six months
As most of you know I spend a lot of my time fighting with VMWare, it’s wonderful Horizon product and a supplier who makes omnishambles changes to the point where trying to keep civil with them is a challenge.
As such, I was getting calls and messages at midnight to change configurations of servers and ensure clients were functional.
With me awake at Midnight, I made use of the time the only way I could – That’s right – finding my passport and doing actual packing.
Yes. The office had won. AGAIN
It’s almost as if they don’t want me to go on breaks or holiday these days – I swear.
For this trip, I tried to pack as minimal as possible – This was a 3 shirt, 2 t-shirt, underwear and socks trip. Along with the camera gear and a bunch of cables (and chargers) it was a relatively fast packing experience.
Well, for me anyway
With 5:20 coming around way too quickly, I headed out of the flat, and into the morning Uber.
With efficiency, the driver actually paid attention to the route I gave him, and I was dropped off at Birmingham New Street station.
With no ticket to buy as such (and it loaded in my passbook), I headed through the barriers and down to the platform
As expected, two Super Voyagers were waiting to take me to London. The logic of using Diesel Multiple Units on a route which is entirely electrified is of course up for debate.
My seat was in the front train, so I hopped on, and saw there were plenty of empty seats – as well as my reserved seat. I grabbed one of the empty pair of seats to London, and settled in.
I think I’ve covered this travel path and setup more than once recently, so we all know it’s a 17” Seat width that has seen better days sine Virgin Trains introduce the Voyagers and Super Voyagers between 2001 and 2002.
Nonetheless – when the train is half empty – and you have two seats to yourself, it’s a pleasant enough experience, especially when the train keeps to time and hits Euston station early.
What more could I want for £9? Yes – I could have paid for the 1st class experience, but at this time of day, it would make no difference at all.
With me off the train at Euston station, I had three choices to get to Heathrow:
- Tube, the Heathrow Express (38 minutes, 2 changes)
- Tube, then TfL Rail (52 minutes, 2 changes)
- Tube (58 minutes 1 change)
With plenty of time on my side, and a good three hours before my flight departed – I headed for the Underground
Well, it was £3.10. Bargain.
I made the junior schoolboy error of taking the northern line to Leicester Square and changing for Piccadilly Line at Leicester Square (instead of taking the Victoria Line to Green Park – the Victoria line wins on frequency these days), but with time on my side – I wasn’t exactly worrying about the few extra minutes this would consume.
Getting off the Northern Line at Leicester Square, I followed the signs to the Piccadilly Line… to see a Heathrow T5 train pulling away
Thankfully at Heathrow T4 train was right behind. However, if you’re in time pressures, this may not be the train to catch, as it has a good 5 minute layover at Heathrow T4 station before heading to Heathrow Central.
With the ride a rather relaxing one to Heathrow central (and the train being sparsely populated first thing in the morning, the tube train sped out of central London to play “race the District Line trains”, and then verging off to the Hounslow and Heathrow Branch.
I popped my head of the door at Hatton Cross, and with a Heathrow T2-3/5 train a good 7 minutes away, I hung around and rode the loop around Terminal 4 to Terminal 2-3.
With me off the train and a beep of my phone, it was time to head somewhere new for me. Heathrow Terminal 2.
Eh.. Terminal 2?
Terminal 2 – The Queen’s Terminal is a novelty to me – mainly because I’ve never flown from the new T2 (the joy switching from Star Alliance to Oneworld during the waning days of Terminal 1). As such, I’ve never flown from it or into it.
When you first pop out of the Underground, and head up, the first thing you’re encountering is a giant Swirl.
For me, it was a case of follow the signs to departure, as well as the check-in areas.
The emphasis on T2 is self-service with airline staff to help you along. With no luggage to check in, I grabbed my thermal paper boarding passes and cleared security.
Heathrow security at 9am in the morning… is pretty much how you expect it to be. At least the queues tend to keep moving.
10 minutes later and no questions, I was cleared through – which considering I had no priority boarding, was a reasonable experience.
And this calls for a celebratory meal.
Yes. It’s a Boots £3.99 meal deal. Don’t hate me Hate the system. Or don’t hate Boots.
Whilst I was queuing up, one of my co-workers magically popped up. She was in shock 1) that I was at the airport and 2) I was dressed how I normally am for work
I don’t know who was more shocked – me or her!
With a meal deal in me, I went to watch planes. Because I was at an airport, and it’s interesting to see what’s flying
And the one thing to note is the growth of the 737 MAX family. Heathrow is friendly to most sorts of traffic (including Bombardier Q400s for some bizarre reason… a most excellent use of valuable slots). I spotted a few 737 MAX aircraft – including two next to each other at T2.
My plane snuck its way into Heathrow, with it docking at A19.
When the gate declared, I started to make my way to it – stopping to get some chocolates for my friends at Pembroke and Rye.
Boarding commenced on time, and I joined the great queue to board.
With my boarding pass scanned, I headed aboard the first of four flights this trip to Munich
FULL DISCLOSURE: Recaro Aircraft Seating kindly invited Economy Class and Beyond, as a guest on the Lufthansa Flying Lab, as well as paying for the flights as part of this.
Economy Class and Beyond attended Apex Expo and Aircraft Interiors Expo North Americas as a media delegate
All opinions and thoughts are the author’s own, and are not directed by Recaro Aircraft Seating, Lufthansa Systems, APEX or Aircraft Interiors Expo.
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