British Airways inaugural flight to Cologne/Bonn from London Gatwick.
I decided to book the tickets as a two day return trip was only going to be £45 return for two days in the lovely German city.
As soon as I got off my Virgin 787 at LHR, I bee lined from the arrivals down to the coach station and was on the next coach down to London Gatwick.
Getting to LGW with four hours to spare, I checked in at the desk and made my way air side to my favourite place at LGW! The WONDERTREE.
As is typical for me- I got some pictures of various aircraft operating around LGW.
I then left to go to my gate once it was announced where I would be flying from. It was a bit of a long walk and to an area of the South Terminal I hadn't flown from…
The Airbus A320 making the return to Cologne for BA was G-GATU, a second hand 11 year old A320 that formerly flew with defunct Indian carrier Kingfisher and Tunisian charter airline Nouvelair. This is one of a hanful of A320s taken from other airlines (Namely TAM Brasil and Wizzair) to hasten the retirement of the vintage Boeing 737-400 fleet at London Gatwick after the addition of the ex-BMI Airbus A319 fleet.
We boarded the Airbus and I took my seat at 7A. So I was about 2 rows behind Club Europe (Business) but in front of the over wing emergency exits.
The plane pushed back and was up in the air pretty punctual. The flight crew made announcements on this being their inaugural service to CGN from LGW.
All though the route will only be a seasonal winter service, it is giving Gatwick back a route that easyJet dropped in 2016. Meaning that CGN now has services with 4 airlines to London Heathrow, Gatwick, Southend and Stansted.
Buy on Board was handed out by the crew on the A320, I chose to have a herbal tea with kit kat.
Couldn't see anything much on the arrival into the CGN airport as it was late in the evening. But we landed on time and we taxied over to Terminal 2.
We parked on stand. No water canon salute unfortunately, but a lady representing the airport was photographing the aircraft as we pulled on stand.
I exited the aircraft via the flight deck, speaking to the pilots for two minutes, the first officer was going to be on the Sunday evening flight I was going to be on (Sweet!)
Exiting the plane, I noticed Cologne had a bit of a party being prepared for the flight back, its a shame BA didn't do something at LGW or on arrival, but this is what is becoming of BA on their short haul network….
All in all a good flight, and I was pleased to be a small part of BA history! Here's to more flights in 2019 with them!!!
Some shots from my trip to COLOGNE during the weekend.
Spotting at CGN on the Sunday.
Germanwings is the leading airline at CGN!
Cargo in CGN:
London - LGW
Cologne - CGN
British Airways or London Gatwick could have made an effort for the inaugural flight, Its a pity CGN didn't do a water canon salute, but can't have everything...
All in all, a good BA European flight and hopefully they keep this route going as I would happily do it again in 2019!
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