PC 2672 Istanbul-SAW to Ankara ( Economy ) Airbus A320neo, Codeshare: AZ 6089 ( you are here ) [ Bonus: ibis Hotel Ankara Airport - Review ]
QR 314 Ankara to Doha ( Economy ) Airbus A321-200 ( click here )
QR 904 Doha to Melbourne ( Economy ) Airbus A380-800, Codeshare: BA 6374, IB 978, S7 4735 ( click here )
QR 905 Melbourne to Doha ( Economy ) Airbus A380-800, Codeshare: BA 6375, IB 979, S7 4736 ( click here ) [ Bonus: Free Doha Stopover Hotel Review: Safir Hotel ]
QR 257 Doha to Ankara ( Economy ) Airbus A320-200 ( click here )
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As I needed to fly to Melbourne in the shortest time possible, I checked the alternatives of SQ,QR,EY and EK departing from IST as they are the only carriers that flies both to IST/SAW & MEL. In addition, Qatar Airways has flights to 7 destinations in Turkey. When checking Qatar Airways I have realized that they had a promotion for Melbourne flights from Turkish destinations only for 995$ (roundtrip). As I needed be in Ankara in the middle of August, I've first checked IST/SAW-DOH-MEL-DOH-ESB but there were no cheap deals for the first leg. Later on I tried to book the promotional fare from Ankara and returning back there. I had found that deal so I have booked it online quickly. Also this would be my first Oneworld flight after having a Ruby status. In addition, I would obtain Sapphire status after my BA flights to USA in Business Class. So, It was time to book my flight to Ankara, my train ticket which I would return was already booked at that point. I didn't want to fly SAW-ESB the same morning as my flight to avoid a passenger liability transfer In case of a delay. So, I have flown the cheapest flight to ESB the day before and booked a room in a hotel near the airport for a night. This method was cheaper than flying from IST or SAW to DOH.
Route Overview ( IST/SAW - ESB )
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This route is one of the busiest flights in Turkey and almost has 50 daily flights each direction. Three airlines operate flights between IST/SAW and ESB. Turkish Airlines is the only carrier operating this route from Atatürk Airport, in addition they also fly to ESB from Sabiha Gökçen Airport too. AnadoluJet also operates flights from SAW to ESB daily under the code of TK as they are a trademark of them. The third carrier is Pegasus Airlines, which I have chosen for this trip, has scheduled daily flights between SAW and ESB. I have paid 12€ for the one way flight and 4€ for prepaid extra baggage.
Pax for this flight
Economy Class 160/186 This is the exact number of passengers onboard this flight. I have heard one of the ground crew telling the pax to the bus driver that took us from the terminal to the aircraft. There were mostly passengers transferring to Kiev at Ankara and some transfer passengers from international flights that arrived to SAW.
I have checked-in online for this flight 72 hours before departure on the PC mobile app.
Today, seat 21F was assigned for me, I kept this seat as I didn't want to pay a seat selection fee for a 40 minute flight.
No additional service bought today so check-in is completed.
ISTANBUL SABIHA GÖKÇEN AIRPORT - SAW
Entering the airport:
For those traveling from the European side, bus E-3 from 4.Levent is one of the best options to access this airport as it only takes 45 minutes to the airport ( without traffic ) and costs only 7,80 TRY ( equal to 1,25€ ) with Istanbulkart.
The west and the middle entrances was packed to I have headed to the East Entrance which is located at the end of the passenger drop off lane. It's much quieter than the other entrances because most of the cars dropped passengers at the very beginning of the drop off lane. I was in the building within 5 minutes.
I have weighed my bag to ensure that I have paid for enough extra luggage weight. My baggage was under 20 kilos so no problem.
Pegasus Airlines has 3 check-in islands at this airport. Island C which I used today is bag drop only, the other islands D & E are standart check-in counters. The light under the screens at the counter turns green when the agent is ready for the next passenger.
I had arrived early so I had lots of time. First I've bought my shampoo which I would use during this trip at the Watsons store on the departure level of this terminal.
I was hungry at that time so I headed Caribou Coffee which is located near check-in island H for a late lunch. A cold drink and a sandwich was my choice today. I've paid this by food checks.
Then I headed around the terminal to buy my monthly magazines at the D&R store.
After that, it was time to go airside. Almost all of the security lanes where open and I was in airside in 5 minutes despite the high crowd.
I didn't want to eat something onboard so I have headed to Puro Gusto Restaurant. I had a pasta with chicken for dinner. I would like to note that the photo below is taken after I took some bites so the portion is actually bigger.
At that time the gate was assigned for my flight.
VISIT TO THE TERMINAL EXPANSION
On the 31st of July, the new terminal building has opened officially which would expand the area of the domestic terminal. There would be 4 more jetbridges in this building and some more bus gates. The expansion wasn't completely open so I could have taken photos of some of the areas, security was not allowing passengers to those areas which were not in service at that time.
Passengers arriving to this building would connect to the main building from this area.
The new area for domestic arrivals, buses assigned to flights arriving at remote stands would drop off their passengers here.
Puro Gusto Restaurant, which I have eaten my pasta at, would open a new restaurant to this new building.
The barriers not allowing passengers to go the area which the new jetbridges are located.
BOARDING AND BUS JOURNEY TO THE AIRCRAFT
Gate 310B is a remote gate.
An AJA 738 and a PC 738 can be seen at the gate.
Boarding had begun at gate 310B 45 minutes before scheduled departure time.
On the bus journey to the aircraft, this AJA aircraft getting ready to Trabzon appeared.
TC-CPY, a 738 for PC at gate 206A
Food is loaded to TC-SAH which would also fly to ESB as TK7254
TK7346 to BJV is pushing back.
This TK A320 would also be flying to Bodrum.
This PC 738 parked at gate 202B would serve PC702 to Bishkek.
TC-JGA had just arrived from ESB at that time.
A PC A320 getting ready to head off to Kayseri
TC-IZI would operate PC2206 to Izmir
A TK 738 getting ready for his flight to Tbilisi
The Airbus A320neo which would take me to Ankara
This aircraft was named Feyza.
As my seat was 21F, I boarded from the rear door.
PC2672 ISTANBUL-SAW to ANKARA
It was comfortable for a low cost airline and the legroom was fine enough.
The overhead panel
TC-JGA to TBS was pushing back as boarding continued.
TK7346 to BJV has been seen again.
After TC-JGA pushed back, TC-IZI appeared for the second time.
After boarding was completed, the captain announced that the flight would be delayed due to heavy traffic at the runway so we remained in our parking position for 25 minutes and then headed to the runway. After pushing back the safety demo was done by the cabin crew.
We had took of at 21:10 ( 55 minutes after our scheduled departure time )
Somewhere around Tepeören district in Istanbul just after takeoff
Pegasus Airlines doesn't offer free meals or drinks so a buy-on-board menu can be founded in the seat pocket. Today most of the passengers wanted to buy something so it took a long time that the trolley came to me as one of them starts service from the first row and the other one from the last row and they meet at the middle of the aircraft. Today I have just bought some water. The menu and the price list can be found in my PC 3308 report.
Pegasus hasn't equipped their Airbus fleet with overhead screens so the only way of entertainment is inflight magazines. The Pegasus Magazine wasn't present at my seat pocked at this flight as someone might took it home on the previous flight. The only choice to read was the Euro 2024 bid brochure and the inflight menu.
Also the safety card is attached to the seat in front.
The crew was nice and polite to passengers during this flight. They were slow at the buy on board service so they couldn't collect rubbish due to landing, but when leaving the aircraft the crew offered to throw my waste to the rubbish bins. Also as I heard other passengers talking with the crew, their English were understandable and they spoke fluently, it is hard to find a fluent English speaking cabin crew onboard on Turkish carriers.
Descending and arrival:
Some photos of Ankara before landing
We had landed at 21:50 at Ankara ( 30 minutes late than scheduled arrival time ). We had parked to gate 115 after a short taxi.
TC-CRB which would serve PC3169 to ESB was parked at gate 113 at the time we parked.
ANKARA ESENBOĞA AIRPORT - ESB
A last view of the aircraft from the terminal.
Domestic Arrivals FIDS
Our baggages would be arriving to carousel 24. There were not many passengers at the carousel because most of the passengers had onward connections or had to clear customs at the international terminal. Bags have arrived within 10 minutes.
After claiming my luggage, I have headed to the taxi rank to go to my hotel. I would like to remind you that I have posted a review about the hotel below in the bonus section.
BONUS: IBIS HOTEL ANKARA AIRPORT
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Online Check-in As ibis is in the Accor group, like most of the Accor hotels, two days ago my stay a mail which had a link to online check-in had arrived. I have entered my personal details at that time and also added a backup credit card to the reservation.
After the online check-in process, a confirmation mail was sent to me.
Arriving to the Hotel: As I arrived to the hotel I was greeted by the hotel staff and checked-in within 5 minutes. Then I headed to my room.
The room was a double bed non-smoking room as my request.
The TV which included more than 50 channels.
Free tea, coffee and water was offered, as also there was a safe in the room.
Additional pillows and blankets were also ready at the room.
The bathroom was small but enough for one person. Shampoo and soap was provided by the hotel.
A photo of the room guide which was both in Turkish and English
Also I was a LeClubAccor member so a free ice cream coupon was given to me during check-in. I had the option to use it at the bar or order it to my room. I had headed down to the reception to enjoy the ice cream.
There was only strawberry ice cream available at that time as they were out of other flavors.
Also magazines in Turkish & English were available at the lobby area. I don't know if the same article is located in the English version of National Geographic but the article about sleeping was really interesting and had some sleeping tips which may be useful. This is the August 2018 edition of National Geographic in Turkish.
Breakfast was served until 11:00 so I couldn't catch it as I woke up late the day after. At noon that day, I had checked-out and requested a taxi which arrived in 5 minutes. So the hotel experience has ended and I would have catch my next flight to Doha.
Thanks for reading.
Istanbul - SAW
Ankara - ESB
As this was a short flight with a really good price. It was satisfying for the price I have paid and the 30 minute late arrival didn't affected me as my next flight was the day after. Also I would like to remind that if you check-in online for PC flights, you earn 250 BolBol points for domestic flights and 500 BolBol points for international flights even you if you don't purchase extras so it's possible to collect more points by online checking-in.
SAW: (+) Airport staff was prepared for heavy passenger traffic (+) Wide selection of facilities at the airport (+) Food at Puro Gusto is for a reasonable price ( compared to airports ) and tasty (+) With the expansion and new bus gates, there is more space to sit when waiting for flights PC2672: (+) Cabin crew was nice to passengers (+) Crew spoke clear English with non-Turkish customers (-) In flight magazine lacked in my seat pocket. (-) Crew was slow during buy-on-board service as my turn came when descending ESB: (+) Fast baggage claim (+) Not crowded
3 LIKESLIKE TO THANK THE AUTHORTHANKS ! FLIGHT-REPORT LIKED
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