Hello and welcome to the second and last part of a series of flights I took during a weekend trip to Malaga late last year, The first trip can be seen at the following link below:
After a lovely weekend stay in Malaga to refresh my mind (and soul, one could say) it was time to head back up to the bitter cold up north. On the day of my departure and after checking out of my hotel of choice - the Ibis Budget Malaga Centre - I headed down to the nearest Cercanias station to catch a surburban train over to the airport.
And here we are - Malaga Airport. Vueling flights depart out of the lovely Terminal 3, most specifically from the newest addition to the airport, Pier D:
Having already checked in beforehand I decided to do some airport exploring before making my way past security. (And boy am I glad I had checked in before - those VY desks were packed!)
And by exploring I mostly mean (the departures side of) Terminal 2 AKA the Picasso terminal. Despite having never been here it was always the first thing that came to my mind when I thought of the airport so why not.
(Pay close attention to that cafe over there - it'll become relevant in a few moments.)
Looking up I spotted a balloon stuck in one of those huge fans above us - wonder how long it's been up there?
Thomas Cook had gone under a month ago and the signs of its disappearance were still quite visible:
With not much else to do I headed past a packed security and into airside. Half of the terminal was under renovation and cut off from passengers.
Walk-through duty free shop, as is usual.
Looking for somewhere to eat (and this is where the previously mentioned cafe comes to play) I try to find a "Pans and Company" - a chain of sandwich shops I used to have close by but alas, they had closed down a while back. Thing is, there were still a thing in the rest of the country, including Malaga. The cafe I mentioned earlier was a Pans but it had a more reduced offering than the Pans airside, so I opted to wait.
Thing is… I couldn't find it! No matter how much I looked around the part of the pier that wasn't boarded up for renovations I wasn't able to see jack. Tired and hungry, I asked the info counter only to be told not only that there not only wasn't a Pans airside, it had never even existed… huh? We'll see about that in a bit…
In the end I opted for a sandwich in the Italian restaurant upstairs (it was dreadful);
Then I spent some time at those desks you may have seen in the previous trip-report on my phone:
…before heading down to my gate: D47.
And it was at my gate…
…that I discovered to my shock and horror that there was indeed a Pans, right at the very end of the pier. Too bad I couldn't grab something to bit anymore… as almost immediately we began boarding:
Ah well, que sera, sera…
A bus ride away to our plane for today…:
…the month-old EC-NEA, my very first flight on an A320 NEO!
Inside - still had that new plane smell:
Rows next to me (sadly soon occupied after this picture was taken):
Legroom space: pretty good!
And they come with (functioning) USB chargers:
The last busload arrives in the meantime…
…and by 4:30 we had begun pushback.
Lining up on the runway:
Bye-bye Malaga! Hope we meet again soon once this whole Covid thing's over!
Not long after takeoff BOB service began. I opted for a "natural" lemonade for 2 euros - not very tasty IMO…
And as I put on my headphones for the rest of the flight it was time to enjoy what would ultimately be a smooth, uneventful flight:
By 6pm we were beginning our descent onto a cloudy BIO:
And just like that, my trip to Malaga has come to an end:
One final look at NEA from the finger:
And I'm off to catch the (slightly battered) bus back to San Sebastian:
Thanks for reading!
Vueling: despite its negative press I've never really had any bad flights with them. Crew were splendid, cabin was clean (expected from a new plane though) and the BoB, while not cheap wasn't necessarily horribly expensive either. Would definitely fly with them again (not like there's much to choose from out of BIO)
Malaga Airport: My first impressions from when I arrived for the first time took a slight downturn once it was time to depart from there. (Seriously, how does someone at the info counter not know if a restaurant exist or not?) That being said, access to the airport is excellent from Malaga centre and it was clean. Shame most of the restaurants weren't that great (and it truly shows if you check those Google reviews...)
Bilbao Airport: Not much to add from what I've said in previous trip reports, smooth transition from plane to arrival, an overall decent regional airport through and through.