As this was a separate booking we had collected our baggage and cleared through immigration to arrive land side. We now had to head back up to departures and check-in again. This proved a little more complicated than expected. The way from the ground floor arrivals to the 1st floor departures required a security check. The security guard wanted to look at our boarding cards - obviously we didn't yet have these as we hadn't yet checked-in. Instead we produced our booking confirmation, which was analysed very carefully by the guard. Strangely the the booking said only it was for 2 passengers and but was addressed to me. For my friend this required a little more persuasion as her name was not on it. Luckily she had copied the details into a printed out email with out hotel reservation with her name, this had nothing to do with the flight itself but seemed to satisfy the guard eventually. At the top of the escalator we arrived at another security guard check and had to go through the whole booking again and our suitcases were x-rayed before being allowed to pass.
Eventually we were in the check-in hall,and headed to the Air India counter.
After a little queuing we were checked-in by the friendly enough staff. We used the bureau de change to get our Rupees and headed towards departures.
The security scan was relatively painless, and my friend had to go through the typical female cubicle to have be scanned. We were greeted straight away with a WHSmith - had we even left the UK??
Checking the departure board, our gate was already showing - 30B.
We still had lots of time before the departure and headed to get some food from the food court on the upper level.
I love India - I can have a cheeky McDonalds as there are plenty of vegetarian options in this country of millions of vegetarians where beef is banned and pork isn't served either. I chose a McSpicy Paneer a spicy burger made from indian cheese. The meal came to a total of 150R (about €2).
The flight was now showing to be about 30 mins late, so we just hung around a bit. I tried to register for the free airport wifi which required a mobile number for the access code, which never came. After a while we headed towards the now open gate.
Our boarding passes were scanned and we headed down the air bridge getting a look at our A319.
We were welcomed on board by the crew and took our seats. I had managed to get a window seat in 12F.
The aircraft interior was showing its age a bit but the seats had enough legroom for this 1:20 flight.
There was even an screen (which wasn't used), but it's not really needed on this short flight.
The seat pocket contained the safety card, magazine and newspaper.
I had a good look through the magazine and came across the information about Air India which included the fleet, route map and even a list containing the departure times for Air India flights!
This would be my view today.
We had to wait about 30 mins on the plane before departure so that in total were had about an hours delay.
We were then off. Shortly after departure the meal service began, I was starving but it turns out it as worth it! We were given a meal consisting of a paneer curry and a curry containing potatoes and green beans served with rice. It was a little spicy but I loved it, I even ate the remains of my friend's meal! There was also a little salad thing of cucumbers. The dessert was a warm cake type thing with custard which was also good. I was impressed.
The view over Rajasthan was great
But soon it was time to land. There was a good view of the city including the Fort and the Palace
The airport looked like a military air base with only a little civilian terminal in one corner
We were thanked for flying Air India on our way off the plane, at which point I said to the crew that I really enjoyed the food (it really was that good, possibly the best I've had in economy)
We walked over to the small terminal to collect our bags
Which took a few minutes
Before leaving the terminal where our hotel had arranged to pick us up
New Delhi - DEL
Jodhpur - JDH
Despite the delay I really enjoyed this flight. The food was amazing and the service on board was good. I'd seriously consider taking Air India long haul from Europe after this experience.
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