2015 featured 2 Business Class trips to Austria and Belgium. I had plans of attending a match at Old Trafford to see Manchester United play. My last visit was in November 2012 and when the opportunity came knocking, I took it with both hands.
I flew to London Heathrow ( just like 2012 ), taking the early morning flight out of Mumbai. My family friend in the UK was more than glad to have me over and was also accompanying me to the game at Manchester.
The Outbound Flight was on 19th January 2016 and the return on 29th January 2016.
Mumbai - London ( 19th January 2016 ) :
My Ride to the Airport, the Mercedes C220 :
Quick check-in, not so quick Security Check and Immigration ( never seen so much rush in the Fast Track, excruciatingly slow ) and I was at the GVK First Class Lounge. The First Class Lounge offers a complimentary Massage and has a separate seating area with A la-carte menu.
Shots from the Lounge :
After a quick nap, it was time to board the early morning flight. The Airbus A380 boasts First Class Suites and it is such a pleasurable experience. The Traditional Welcome includes Dates and Arabian Coffee :
Breakfast Menu :
Video Link for the Emirates A380 Takeoff from Mumbai International Airport :
Breakfast service commences :
Shots of the Business Class Lounge :
Dubai International Airport :
Video Link for the A380 Landing at Dubai International Airport :
A Quick Security Check and I was at the First Class Lounge :
The Boarding Commenced from the Lounge and it was so nice to be in the FIrst Class Suite of the A380 again!
Taxiing to the Runway :
Video Link for the Takeoff from Dubai International Airport :
The Breakfast, Lunch and everything in between Menus :D
Amazing Lunch Spread onboard :
The Unused but Small Lounge in front of the First Class. The Business Class Lounge is the USP in the A380.
76 Business Class Seats :
The Business Class Lounge :
I roamed the Upper Deck for sometime and returned to find my bed ready for a quick nap!
One Hour before the Flight landed into London, I was awakened by the Stewardess for my On-Board Shower Appointment! A Shower 40000 feet in the Sky!
Video Link of a Quick Tour of the Emirates A380 First Class Onboard Shower :
Refreshed and ready for arrival, I was served some fruits and tea before landing. Now that is Service!
Nearing Touchdown at Heathrow :
Video Link for the A380 Landing at Heathrow International Airport, London :
Heathrow is the Busiest Airport in the world and these photos prove it :
Fast Track Service at Heathrow is brilliant and all formalities were completed in less than 20 minutes. I then walked into the Emirates Arrivals Lounge for my Chauffeur service.
The Mercedes S Class. Pampered! Business Class passengers get chauffeured in an E Class.
Enroute to my Friend's Place.
London - Mumbai ( 29th January 2016 ) :
A memorable trip came to an end and it was time for the return journey. Once again I had the luxury of the S Class to shuttle me to the Airport :
Amazingly, Heathrow wasn't crowded the way it was in 2012. Fast Track ensured brisk movement and I was in the Departures' Hall in no time :
The Emirates Lounge is quite a walk and the Lounge does have the option of Boarding from the Lounge. However our flight would follow the standard single gate boarding procedure.
Shots of the Lounge :
One thing is certain, when flying in premium classes, you are never famished! Lip Smacking Spread :
I boarded the last flight out of Heathrow, I think its termed as the "Red Eye" Flight since it lands at Dubai in the morning. The First Class Suites number 14 onboard the A380.
Video Link for the Takeoff from Heathrow. Goodbye London, until next time!
Dinner Menu :
Food, food and more food. I wanted to binge on desserts!
Light Snacks at the Lounge in the Business Class :
Its quite a tight space to operate from :
The Lounge Host ( A Liverpool Fan, we indulged in some friendly banter ) decided to give up his job and clothed me in his trademark Emirates Suit. A teetotaler was asked to serve up some mocktails ( supposedly ) :P
What an experience!
The Return Flight wasn't full but many wanted to try the Onboard Shower. Unlike the previous flight, I had to shower midway through my journey :( It was a blessing in disguise as I felt so fresh and slept like a baby, even though the nap lasted less than 3 hours.
Shots from the Onboard Shower :
Video Link :
Time to zzzz :
What a beautiful sight, above the clouds, Thank you Lord! One day we won't need airplanes for such heights :)
Approaching Dubai :
It wasn't a clear day in Dubai and the sky was pretty overcast.
Video Link of the touchdown at Dubai International Airport :
Dubai International Airport :
Time to relax in the First Class Lounge of Dubai for the last time on this trip :
The Menu, I opted for an early Brunch :
Boarding at Dubai is always from the Lounge and the final leg of the trip was in the Boeing 777-300ER. There are 16 First Class Suites and the Layout is slightly different. These Suites are next to each other unlike the step formation in the A380 :
A Never ending list of options on Emirates' Multi Award Winning ICE ( Information, Communications, Entertainment ) System, Live TV does offer variety.
The Menu onboard but I had my fill and didn't intend to eat anymore.
Taxiing to the runway :
Video Link of an A380 touching down at Dubai International Airport :
Takeoff from Dubai. Bye Bye Dubai. Thanks for the Hospitality :
Video Link ( No Rear Wing Camera on this ) :
Finish watching The Martian, shut the doors of the Suite and get some sleep :
Hovering over Mumbai, as usual delays due to air congestion :
Nearing touchdown at Mumbai :
Video Link of the Landing at Mumbai International Airport Terminal 2, quite a pleasant evening :
The disembarking was quick and I reached the Duty Free section only to realise I had forgotten my Duty-Free bag onboard!! This trip taught me not to get complacent and not just think that its fine to go through the motions. Anyways, so began the run back to the aircraft and the retrieval of the bag. The Contents of the bag were intact and I made it back to the arrivals hall safely. I exited the terminal after an exhaustive 45 minutes but everything in hand. Thank God for that! It would be a crime to leave chocolates behind haha!
Barring the result Manchester United gave me at Old Trafford, it was a memorable trip. It was nice to have a First Class journey early in the year. Set the tone for the coming months and I already have a journey lined up in less than a fortnight. Where to, well patience! Time will reveal it all.
Once again, a Big THANK YOU to Emirates for all the love and hospitality shown to me. Its a blessing to be a Gold Member of Skywards!
2016 will feature more posts in the "Flying Series". God Bless and thanks for the Support for this Blog :)