BA974 London Heathrow Terminal 5 to Hamburg Airport (CLUB EUROPE)
Back to Innovation, Back to Hamburg
It’s time to go in the air. What catering wonder will be loaded? What wonders will we see? And did British Airways pitch their seats too tight on an Airbus A320?
In this trip report:
- Back to the industry
- Sunday adventures to Heathrow featuring FlixBus
- British Airways Galleries – Club South Lounge
- BA974 London Heathrow to Hamburg Airport
- Into Germany, IBIS Budget, Saint Pauli
- When cables go walkies (A trip to Saturn)
- Sights of Aircraft Interiors Expo 2023 (What you might have missed)
- Back to Hamburg Airport
- Hamburg Airport Lounge
- BA967 Hamburg Airport to London Heathrow
- The joke of Heathrow Luggage delivery and the ride home
- Innovation continues
BA947 London Heathrow to Hamburg Airport
BA947 London Heathrow to Hamburg Airport
British Airways., Airbus A320, Seat 3F – Club Europe (Business Class)
464 miles flown, 0 Tier Points and Avios earned (redemption flight)
Heading down the jetway, I find the usual amazement of how long they are at Heathrow Terminal 5 – mainly to maximise the space they had at the complex.
Well, it’s better than a bus tour of the terminal via Gate A10 (or A4 if you’re a domestic flyer).
I’ll be honest – I’m kind of new to this pre-boarding thing. So it was unusual for me to see such an empty cabin.
I took my chances and shoved my backpack in the overhead compartment, as the rest of the passengers took their time boarding the A320, with overhead bin space running out rapidly.
Although this was nothing, compared to the return flight. More on that later.
The seat again is the Collins Aerospace Pinnacle. I’ve written more than my fair share of comments about this seat – it’s fine in itself, however, it does suffer with pitching – where a 30” pitch isn’t suitable for this design (and 31” would have worked a lot better).
There’s even space for the walking stick.
With the clock continuing to run down, the plane eventually had its boarding complete.
As a BA A350 passes by.
It was then a matter of waiting for a slot so we could go. 47 minutes late, the A320 was pushed back to commence the 1-hour and 8-minute flight to Hamburg.
Or as I said – on time for British Airways.
As we pushed back, the safety demonstration was carried out manually.
With departures heading towards London from the south runway, our A320 had a short taxi thankfully. A few minutes later after the usual queues, our A320 took to the air. And here’s the video to prove it.
Yes, I remember how to YouTube (poorly) now.
With our A320 in the air, we would be taking a northerly direction out, with the aircraft leaving England over Suffolk, making landfall over the Nederlands and over to Germany, then Hamburg.
The gateways to the East of England Harwich and Felixstowe
As we climbed the inflight connectivity system was switched on. With the overhead IFE Screens switched off years ago, the inflight connectivity system is your IFE.
This is the usual British Airways online portal, which connects over the European Aviation Network to the Internet, with prices starting at £2.99 for messaging, and £4.99 for browsing and connectivity.
There were also connectivity maps too – for those who need to ensure they were in the range of a satellite to connect.
Interesting… that’s a bit of a carve-out for Iceland…
If the flight was longer than a couple of hours, I might have considered paying out – but honestly -for an hour and a bit flight, I was content to play my game of choice when there’s internet connectivity – Crossy Road.
As we were climbing out fast, the crew were also working hard, as there were 10 rows of Club Europe that flight. The meal service followed first – which for this flight, was an Afternoon Tea, with Warm Scones.
Those who remember what I got in Club World as an arrival snack won’t be surprised at what I got here.
There are three mini sandwiches, a cake and a warm plain scone – all good things in my book – although the passenger next to me was struggling a lot to work their minds around the catering concept of what was offered.
Some traditions don’t translate well in the sky it seems.
Not the largest of meals or snacks, however, it filled a hole, as some might say.
A drinks service followed behind the bar service, with a Gin and Tonic following. I’ll be honest, I do like bubbly in the sky – don’t get me wrong, but the acid that sometimes is served in Club Europe can be… acidic. I’d rather have something a little more enjoyable – hence gin these days.
I’ve still got to try James May’s Asian Parsnip Gin. That will be filed under “when I get a few months spare”,
No, I haven’t turned into a Gin snob (said who edited part of this with a Tesco canned G+T one evening), but I do miss the stuff that Finnair serves.
Meanwhile, down the back, the Speedbird Cafe (or Highlife Cafe as it soon will be known), was conducting its service.
The flight proceeded quickly enough, with the service cleared down quickly enough – and before I knew it, Germany had come into view.
Whilst I appreciate Air Travel and the time savings it offers, I do wish that rail could be slightly more competitive on this route (and yes – at one point, I was planning to do this by Rail on the way back, but the number of tickets, along with fixed connections made it… challenging).
Eventually, the 20-minute warning was given as the aircraft descended into Hamburg, with the crew completing cleardowns and ensuring the cabin was prepared for arrival.
With ease, our Airbus A320 lined up for Hamburg Airport and touched down safely.
As we slowed down, it was interesting to note one of the runways was closed for maintenance. Knowing that a stray leaf can pull Hamburg off any sort of operational stability, I was prepared for the worst.
Tower and business aircraft apron.
That bodes well…
Thankfully the A320 taxied straight to a gate.
You can’t say that’s not colourful.
Sneaky Eurowings sneaking around.
Ah. The gate.
After a short delay, a jetbridge was linked to our aircraft. There was a short delay in opening the door.
Once that was clear, we were allowed to disembark.
Whilst the afternoon tea service isn’t the strongest service British Airways offers, it is competent enough for the short haul segment this flight offers. I could moan about the on-time performance, but being late is “par for the course” these days for this airline.
Which is a shame.
At least the crew were friendly and efficient – something to be grateful for on these short European hops.
Into Germany, some trains and the Ibis Budget Hamburg. Or “Oh. Hello bunk bed”.
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