Over the weekend, I flew up to Sydney as there is only so much that one can see or do in Canberra. As there are no budget airlines plying the SYD-CBR route, airfares are actually quite expensive for such a short flight. My flights on Qantas booked on short notice cost A$129 tax inclusive each way. Virgin Australia was no better, with fares around the same price. I had also booked on the QantasLink operated flight so as to experience the Dash 8-Q400, a new aircraft type for me!
03 December 2011 QantasLink QF 1468 Canberra (CBR) - Sydney (SYD) Dash 8-Q400 VH-QOA Economy Class
Checked in was done using the self-check in counters at Canberra Terminal.
My boarding pass. The flight was operated by QantasLink (aka Eastern Airlines).
Cleared security without much hassle and entered the small terminal building. Most of the arrivals/departures were from Sydney.
Qantas B734 taxiing to the gate.
Nearing the gate.
Boarding in progress for the earlier baby boeing flight to Sydney.
A Q300 and Q400. I would be flying the longer Q400.
Flight would be departing from Gate 14. Again, free newspapers were available at the gate for all Qantas passengers! I wonder if Virgin also provides free newspapers.
VH-QOA would be flying me to Sydney this morning.
QantasLink supports the National Breast Cancer Foundation!
Was warmly welcomed at the door by a friendly crew member who greeted me by name. Nice gesture by Qantas again. In fact, out of my 6 sectors, I was only not greeted by name on the first sector SIN-SYD flight. Kind of amazing, I must say. There were 2 female cabin crew looking after us on this flight. Boarding was orderly and plane was quite full. However I still scored an empty seat beside me.
Legroom was very good! Much better than the B744/734 aircraft flown so far. Quite an irony since these props fly the shortest route.
Another view of the seats. The seats cannot be reclined though.
Qantas inflight mag, QantasLink inflight mag and safety card.
At the gate.
Flight time was announced to be 30mins. Quite a standard flight time for the sector, regardless of jet or prop. However departure was delayed for a short while due to, again, a no-show pax whose baggage needed to be offloaded again. The captain apologized for the slight delay though. No worries as the sector time was padded at 50min. Interestingly, the jets have a longer padded time of 55min.
Push-back and we were off! Safety briefing was done manually with a voice recording. No inflight entertainment facilities on the Dash 8.
Takeoff from Rwy35.
Making a left turn.
Climbing and service announcement after seatbelt signs were switched off.
Clear skies and great weather!
Crew started the refreshment service. One crew distributed snack boxes while the other served drinks. Hot coffee/tea, juices and water were offered. Not bad!
The lovely snack box.
Contents of the snack box: Pastry, trail mix and mints. Impressive!
The strawberry danish was freezing cold though.
I had a juice. QantasLink serves bigger bottles of juice (350ml) as compared to Qantas mainline which gave 250ml bottles.
The prop had already started its descent when I was served my drink. Trash was rapidly cleared away by the 2 crew who worked non-stop throughout the flight.
Another cabin view during descent. Whole flight was very smooth.
With the great sunny weather and clear skies, I knew I would be in for fantastic scenery during landing. Flying over the southern suburbs of Sydney.
Final approach with Sydney skyline in view.
Spot the famous Sydney icons!!
It looked like a miniature city from up here! So unreal!
Landing on Rwy16R and taxi to the gate. Really long post-landing announcement!
Back to Qantas land.
Disembarking the plane.
View of the tarmac. Welcome to sunny Sydney!
Canberra - CBR
Sydney - SYD
One word, impressive! Really amazing of QantasLink to serve a substantial snack on the short hop and even offer hot drinks! Kudos to them! Lets see if Qantas can outdo its small sister on the return.
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