BCN - BRU SN3696 Y / AIRBUS A319-100 - 21/08/2015: HERE BRU - JFK SN501 Y / AIRBUS A330-300 - 22/08/2015: http://flight-report.com/en/report-11519.html YUL - CDG AC870 Y / BOEING 777-300ER - 06/09/2015: CDG - BCN VY8247 Y / AIRBUS A320-200 - 07/09/2014:
Preface: We decided to take a trip to the US as we wanted to visit some relatives in Connecticut and the city of Boston. We then found a nice one-week one-way Canada & New England cruise from Boston to Montreal and decided to add the cruise to the trip to CT and Boston to make the most of our trip to America. I started looking for flight good deals from Barcelona but prices were extremely expensive and decided to look for flights out of other European cities. It turned out that Brussels was one of the cities where the cheapest flights departed from so I looked for BRU-JFK/BOS and YUL-BRU. BRU-BOS required a layover and coming from BCN, two layovers would be too much so decided to fly to New York and book a transfer to Connecticut. It all came down then to BRU-JFK and YUL-BRU, the cheapest option was to layover in Paris returning from Montreal and I looked for the same flights in a multi-flight ticket, it turned out to be as cheap as with the layover in Brussels and the CDG-BRU leg was not the day after we landed in Paris. We then would not have to go stop in Paris and Brussels on our way back to Barcelona as the CDG-YUL leg would not be used. After finding and booking the two long-haul legs (BRU-JFK YUL-CDG) I then started looking into options to get to Brussels and return from Paris. Getting to Brussels was pretty easy on Brussels Airlines as they were the cheapest option available, even cheaper than Vueling or Ryanair so it was a no-brainer for us even if flying them required us to overnight in Brussels. On our way back from Paris, we could fly Air France, EasyJet, Vueling or take the train, we decided to fly back from CDG as it was the airport from which our flight from YUL arrived, Air France was too expensive and not worth it in my opinion for a 1:30 flight and by booking with Vueling I could reduce the fare using some Avios I had. Finally we had our routing done (BCN-BRU-JFK YUL-CDG-BCN).
I checked in 24 hours before departure online, it was fairly easy and managed to avoid rows in the last rows, I got seats in row 12 which is above the wing on an Airbus A319. Our flight to Brussels departed at 09:10 so we had to wake up quite early in order to be at the airport about 2 hours before departure time. We drove to the airport and parked there for the whole trip as there was a good summer deal. To get to the baggage drop-off area we had to take the elevator and walk by the arrivals area so I checked if flight SN3695 was on time. Thankfully it was on time, the inbound plane arrived 20 minutes earlier than scheduled so I thought our flight would be on time.
There was no baggage drop-off line so we just queued at the regular check-in line, it was a pretty short wait, no more than 5-10 minutes.
We then got through security. Unfortunately, I was chosen for a random hand baggage control and the security employees messed up my hand baggage. There weren't many people at the airport probably because of the time (07 AM approx) as it was still high-season for tourists in Barcelona.
After walking around the duty free and having breakfast at McDonald's we headed to the gate which was located very close from the shops and restaurants area. I then saw the aircraft I would be flying today (OO-SSE). An ex-Frontier Airlines and ex-Bahrain Air Airbus A319-100 which was 9.4 years old.
Boarding was a breeze as we were a little bit late and everybody had already boarded.
Views of Terminal 1 from the finger when boarding.
Last view of our Airbus A319-100 from outside.
Legroom was pretty good taking into consideration the flight was under 2 hours, much better than Vueling or Ryanair and similar to BA's Airbus A319 I flew with a couple of months before.
SWISS Airbus A321 for Zürich.
Views of Terminal 1 from our Brussels airlines plane.
Lufthansa Embraer ERJ-195 for Munich and Delta Airbus A330-300 for Atlanta.
Views of the Airbus A319 interior and its 3-3 configuration.
Brussels Airlines' Inspired magazine.
After 1 hour and 20 minutes of flight we started our descent into Brussels Airport. I spotted the airport as we flew over it in order to follow today's path to the runway.
Flaps full. Landing gear down.
Spoilers deployed. Reverse thrust.
The captain landed the airplane very smoothly and we started taxiing to our gate.
Brussels Airlines' Airbus A330-300 probably for New York or any of their African destinations.
Brussels Airlines Airbus A319-100 taxiing to the runway.
Asiana Boeing 747F rotating. Lovely airplane!
We arrived to the gate and parked next to a Ryanair Boeing 737-800. After seeing the Ryanair plane I saw how their passengers were disembarking the plane by bus, fortunately we were able to use a finger.
Jetair Fly Embraer ERJ-190 for Zakynthos.
We headed to the Sheraton Brussels Airport where we would be staying for the night as we had to catch our flight to NY the following day. The Sheraton was the only hotel located within walking distance from the hotel as it was basically across the airport so that's the main reason for which we chose this hotel. View of the airport from the hotel.
Here is a picture of the lobby as we were waiting to check-in.
Our hotel seen from the airport.
And now the airport seen from our hotel.
Tourism bonus After having left our luggage in our room at the hotel at around noon, we thought it would be a good idea to visit Brussels' city center so we took the train to Brussels Centraal Station.
We then walk around the main tourist sights. The Galeries Royales St Hubert.
Brussels' famous Grand Place. It is one of the most beautiful plazas I've ever seen! Very beautiful!
Before going back to the train station we tried to visit the Cathedral but it was too late, in Brussels everything seemed to close so early in comparison to Barcelona.
The airport seen going back to the hotel.
Next up: BRU-JFK on Brussels Airlines' Airbus A330-300.
Barcelona - BCN
Brussels - BRU
A very good short-haul flight on Brussels Airlines' Airbus A319. Legroom was pretty good for an European flight, on-time performance was excellent as we left exactly on time and landed a bit earlier than scheduled. It is a pity that they don't serve any snack, sandwich or drink included in their fare as by doing so, would equal them to other legacy carriers such as BA or SWISS. It was still an overall good flight but the in-flight menu was very pricey so for such a short flight and having had breakfast before boarding I didn't order anything. Their Airbus A319 was very clean and looked fairly new. Would fly with Brussels again with no hesitation! Well-done!
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