Early Morning travels to Heathrow and British Airways Galleries North
Summer Premium Adventures
In this Summer Premium Adventure (Warning: Long!)
- In the Summertime when the weather is hot…
- Off to Heathrow, British Airways Galleries North Lounge
- BA762 London Heathrow to Oslo – A321neo (EuroTraveller)
- Oslo Airport, OSL Lounge
- AY914 Oslo to Helsinki, Business Class
- Helsinki Airport lounging
- QR302 Helsinki to Doha (Business Class)
- Doha Lounge Stop Part 1
- QR946 Doha to Singapore (QSuites)
- Hotel Indigo, Katong, Singapore
- Exploring Hawker Markets
- Intercontinental, Bugis, Singapore
- Orchids Everywhere – The National Orchid Garden
- Off to Changi featuring the Singapore Pokemon Centre
- Scoot TR604 Singapore to Bangkok
- Dream Hotel, Bangkok
- Exploring the Wats
- Food Mistakes in Bangkok (Or Regrets. I have a more than a few)
- Back to Suvarnabhumi, Qatar Airways Lounge, Bangkok Airport
- QR833 Bangkok to Doha (QSuites)
- Another long Doha Layover
- QR175 Doha to Oslo
- Back at Oslo Airport
- BA767 Oslo to London Heathrow (EuroTraveller)
- Homeward bound
- Always Curious
With my bags packed and ready to go once again, I cheated as usual – and grabbed an Uber to the Coach station. Well with no buses at 1:40 in the morning and an ankle that was slightly moaning about this whole travel idea the day before, I really didn’t have a choice.
Bundling out of the taxi, I wandered into the bright lights of the coach station and played hunt the stand.
With the coach arriving, it was interesting to note how the company is tightening up luggage allowances and such (and the dreaded seat booking too).
At least the 212 to London Heathrow would be terminating at Heathrow Terminal 5, stopping at Birmingham Airport, Coventry, Banbury, Heathrow Central and Terminal 4 and finally Terminal 5.
I could handle that with my level of tiredness.
As the sun slowly rose, the bus arrived at Heathrow Central.
It was then time for a drive around the Heathrow perimeter as the coach passed the technical bases, through terminal 4 and finally to its last stop – Terminal 5.
I grabbed my bag and headed indoors, where the height of summer traffic was in full swing.
Heading up to the departures level, I rolled over to a check-in machine (that for once played ball). A Boarding pass unhappily spat out. With that in hand, I headed to the queue to drop off the baggage.
Well if I have the status, I’m going to use it to cut down the time in queues.
With a short wait to be seen to, I took a moment to peruse my boarding pass. And then I wish I didn’t.
Why? Gate A10 was showing on the pass large and friendly letters
Oh, dear deity (well, the actual words I used aren’t fit for a semi-family friendly publication).
We’ll get on with the whys and wherefores of that in a bit.
With the bag dropped off, security was… well, not a mess, but there were passengers who didn’t understand how the security systems work and how to fill up a scanning bin and sent in int (the person thought you had to push the trays into the machine…. No… you push them onto the rack and the machine then eats them and your soul for breakfast).
With the hand baggage cleared, there were things to do, namely, get new headphones (as I had left mine at home and get some lounge breakfast and drinks)
The headphones were a cheap £10 Bluetooth pair by JVC. I’ll let you guess how long it took for me to lose them. (hint – it’s a LOT sooner than you’d think)
With that, it was time for the first lounge stop… and breakfast.
British Airways Galleries North
Whilst Galleries North doesn’t have a Horselamp that looks down on you as you walk in, it is a lot closer to gate A10… allowing for a lot more… well… laziness on my side.
I wandered around the lounge and found a few seats to get comfy in.
With the headphones charging, it was time to hunt out breakfast.
Whilst the breakfast service hasn’t changed a lot in the past year or so, it has improved fro the old choice of a cheese omelette roll or a bacon roll. Instead, there’s Spanish omelettes, bacon rolls, hash browns and so on.
It’s by no means a Gallery Firsts style breakfast (or heck, even a Cathay Pacific Business lounge), but pretty reasonable for the larger crowds the Galleries North have to handle.
With me fuelled, water bottles filled and me steeled, it was time to go to face the enemy. It was off to Gate A10
For those who aren’t aware of the inner workings of Heathrow, Gate A10 is the international bussing gate – where if you want a free ramp tour of Heathrow, it’s awful as you get to see a lot of tunnels and not enough planes, crammed up in a mobile sardine can.
The past few times I’ve been here, only one or two flights have been boarding. This time, around 4 flights were boarding making it extremely busy.
It’s amazing you can build a modern terminal and yet not put in enough gates and jetbridges…
Although this would become a theme of this trip rather quickly it would seem.
With boarding announced, the first shuttle bus crammed out for the ride over the hard stands.
I took my place in this for the ride, arriving at a new plane where the bus pulled up… an Airbus A321neo
What new passenger experience would await?
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