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The West African Tour
These upcoming reports map my summer 2019 trip to and from the African continent. As this year is the 'Year of Return', Ghana is welcoming all persons of African descent back to the shores of the nation. It is a year long event marking 400 years since the first slave ship left Africa for the Americas. Ghana has been on my list for ages and I could not have chosen a better time to go.
Booking was done with BA Avios reward points. I redeemed 104,000 miles for 2 persons round trip which was a great deal where taxes were about $510USD. By the time we booked however, economy was only available and we could not alter our dates much so we took what we got.
I arrived at Terminal 3 about 9 hours prior to departure and hotel checkout about about noon. To my surprise there was already a line for BA checkin. LUCKILY at 3pm BA opened their desks and the process began and it was time to relax in the departure area.
Some spotting was done before heading to the gate area and lounge. G-VIIX had just arrived from LGW. This was an a/c that frequents the Caribbean routes. Due to 787 issues I believe, BA leased an Air Belgium A343 for the summer. Pictured is OO-ABE operating as BA92 to LHR.
To pass some time, I made my way to the Plaza lounge and grab a snack and rewind before the long voyage to the motherland.
The lounge was pretty quiet for about 30 minutes and filled to capacity as time progressed. The lounge was pretty average compared to the other neighboring ones.
Compared to other lounges, it was average and the food options are limited. Despite that, the noodle soup was actually pretty good. The choice of alcohol was adequate as well.
TSA333 to YUL , DE763 to FRA & AF772 to CDG
The evening arrivals came right after the other, PAL & FI were 10 minutes apart and CX soon followed. Check out my CX business class review from CGK to JFK via HKG & YVR. An AC333 was being pushed back for departure to YUL.
Our aircraft arrived almost an hour late from LHR. Boarding was delayed as well as departure. As a result I hung around the gate, got some sushi and waited for my boarding zone to be called. The gate crew managed to get everyone on the aircraft in 20 minutes, the fastest I have seen yet.
Aircraft : Boeing 787-9
Age: 3.0 Years
Parked next to Alitalia, our 787-9 prepared for departure.
Snapped this wing view before boarding.
Pushback was also delayed some bit however the crew made a quick taxi to the active.
The lights of mississauga on departure. Our climb out was low and slow, assuming their was some sort of traffic separation going on.
An hour in, the crew came about with the meal service. Although I'm well aware that I'm in economy, the Toronto catering was possibly the worst I have had on British Airways. The Tikka Masala has the same flavor as salt water. The dessert was AMAZING, however.
About 3.5 hours in the cabin lights were still on which disrupted my sleep. We cruised toward LHR, our a/c flew along the Quebec coastline for some bit.
For the first time ever, I missed sunrise. I was slightly upset because I wanted to grab some photos but the crew had dimmed the windows from their controls.
2 Hours from LHR
Prior to 'breakfast' the windows were undimmed allowing natural light to flow throughout the cabin.
The Irish coastline
Crossing the coastline of Wales
A pastry was handed out as breakfast and i opted for a water.
The economy cabin of BA's 789
Descent came 35 minutes out and the urban expanse of London could be seen between the clouds. Our descent was very choppy actually!
The Thames on approach.
Finals on 27 R. VS 789s at maintenance, maybe for engine changes?
Taxi to T5 took some bit. The all white Air Belgium A343 can be seen parked behind the fully painted one in the second picture.
G-VIIK had arrived from GCM-NAS and was loading catering for ATL.
As we arrived late, our connecting flight was only 1:30 minutes from departure and it was time to commute to T3 from T5A.
BA's 789 was a smooth and nice ride for the short flight. I'm not sure how it would have been on anything longer. However, the reward booking was a bargain for two persons having booked 5 months ahead. In respect to the inflight service BA has lost a lot of its touch. As I've flown them numerous times on the BGI-LGW route there was obvious contrast in some of the attitudes of certain cabin crew. It was once seen as the prestigious airline but Virgin has taken that spotlight with little struggle. Nonetheless, my aim at that point was to reach Accra and enjoy my holiday.
One would think that connecting through Heathrow would be a hassle but it was quite easy to be honest. One drawback would be the lack of train service throughout all the terminals as I had to catch a bus for part of the connection.