Hello and welcome on board this new flight report reviewing my last flight of 2021. Nothing to exiting for this end of year just another usual "shuttle" flight between Toulouse and Lyon.
Once again for these Christmas holidays I will visit my family in the Alps, spend time with my relatives and some skiing secessions are scheduled. I work till late on the 23rd December so I don't have plenty of choices for travel dates. I need to get back to work on 3rd of January and Easyjet will have, once again, the best offer with a nice combination of flight on the morning on the 24 and a return scheduled on the evening of the 2nd of january for less than 100€.
And here is the routing of this journey:
EC4334 - Economy - Toulouse => Lyon - Airbus A320You are here
EC4339 - Economy - Lyon => Toulouse - Airbus A319Not available
It's a really common routing for me and a lot of other reporters and without surprise you can find plenty of reports in the French counterpart of the website. The market is splitted between 2 airlines Air France/Hop who operates an average of 3 flights per day with Crj-1000 the second operator is the British low-cost Easyjet operating an average of 2 flights per day with a mix of Airbus A319/A320.
Morning departure from TLS
Once again this year i was in front the airport before the sun rise. To reach the airport is used the cheap and efficient tramway.
Without surprise there is many passengers on the terminal, it's the day before Christmas and many passengers are on the way to get back into there family. Most of them carry large bags and there is long queues in front of check in counters.
If you look the FIDS most of the flights are domestics one's with some extra flights added by Volotea and Easyjet for holidays period.
I quickly reach the security checks, and I found back the crowd. But thanks to a lot of large capacity line opened I cross it in around 10 minutes (including an explosive research on me and my luggage).
To reach the gates you need to walk threw the duty free shops specifically decorated for christmas No stop for me but i will meet one of my colleague in the alley I will flight to Nantes 5 minutes before me.
We share an overpriced coffe on one of the snacks inside the hall C, small advise it's cheaper to buy it on board if you fly with Easyjet.
The boarding time is approaching, we are reaching our respective gates wishing an happy Christmas each other. My gate (51) is located in hall D. I can see my aircraft just behind this Volotea A320.
When I arrive to my gate boarding is already in progress, luckily the priority boarding is included in my ticket so I skip the queue to wait few minutes on pre-boarding area. Since November the Easyjet luggage policy has been slightly changed, "hands free" option is not sold anymore and it has been replaced by an option to carry 2 hands luggages included a trolley one + priority boarding… on the paper it could be a good option but the price is 4 times higher than the previous option! (22€ for my flight) In my case it was cheaper to take the "up front" option and to be seated at a window seat ^^.
For this flight I took the 3A, here is the boarding pass screenshot from the Easyjet app.
We can have a partial view on our Airbus A320, OE-IJF , 6 and a half year of service all spent in the Easyjet group.
The boarding is quickly launched, the aircraft is parked on a contact stand but the jetbridge isn't used to save money anyway it's a good opportunity for me to take some pictures of our aircraft.
Our neighbour is an Embraer 170 of HOP! operating a flight to Lille.
ON board Easyjet A320
Fuselage shoot just before getting on board.
I quickly get to my seat after a friendly welcome from our crew based in Lyon. We find the usual cabin of the Easyjet A320 equipped with Recaro SL3510 a seat that you could find in the A320neo of BA or TAP for example.
One of the main advantages of this seat is to offer a rather good pitch for a low-cost airlines.
The view from seat 3A which offers a window well aligned.
The boarding continues we will be 152 passengers + 3 babies on board for a 180 seat plane the load factor is correct but could have been better taking in account that we are on Christmas-eve morning.
We push back 5 minutes in advance which could have been 10 minutes if a couple of passengers with a baby had not strongly insisted on bringing a huge cozy inside the cabin. The crew will have to prove to them with all the good will that it did not fit and should be stored in the hold. You will notice the superb Christmas sweatshirt of the ground coordinator.
The crew members then present the safety demonstrations, pilots take a right turn for takeoff in 14L.
See you next year Blagnac !
Volotea's A320 is leaving the ground in front of us.
During our taxiing, we can see, in the distance, the particular shape of the Beluga XL cargo oversize planes of the European aircraft manufacturer Airbus.
Well it's our turn to join the runway the engines are pushed to take-off power.
And we leave Toulouse without any difficulties with an overview of the cargo apron where the Boeing's of DHL and Star air had to deliver their last packages before Christmas
Unfortunately we have not yet left the airport area as we are already plunging into a thin layer of cloud.
There will be a few gaps in the South of Toulouse allowing us to have a glimpse of the Garonne under our wings.
After a turn to the east we leave Toulouse and its low cloud cover behind us.
It emerges very quickly after leaving the Occitanie capital. We follow the meanders of the Tarn river for few minutes.
Ground covers up as we approach Aveyron as we only climb very gradually.
On board the service has been launched, since the winter season a plastic card with a reduced format has joined the regulatory Safety Card in the seat pocket presenting both buy on board & duty free products.
The flight continues quietly, the foothills of the Massif Central are snow-covered. It's always very beautiful to see snow-covered landscapes from the sky.
Then we approach the Forez green landscapes.
Speaking of greens we pass vertically from St-Etienne, the most observant will distinguish the stadium of the legendary football team visible in the photo.
We continue our descent which brings us gradually towards Lyon.
We will pass over Lyon with an exceptional view of the city center between Rhône and Saone as well as the Croix Rousse hill.
We go up the Rhône, here the Parc de la Tête d'Or.
The Saône river has its spring much further north.
We make our last turn to intercept the approach axis for runway 17L. This takes us across the Rhône river one last time.
Then it's a long final in the distance we can see the first snow-capped peaks of the Alps.
landing in lyon
Gentle landing on the "shortest" runway, spoiler all extended, reverses in idle and low breaking action.
We exiting the runway and cross without waiting the "longest" runway 17R.
We arrive in front of the low-cost area where a Transavia Boeing 737-800 and an Easyjet Airbus A319 are parked. The doors (D) had not yet resumed service at this time
In the distance we can see visitors from other continents. For the Tunisair Boeing 737-500, the flight from Tunis lasted a couple of hours,it was a bit more for the flight from Montreal operated by this superb Air Canada Airbus A330-300.
We are quickly parked and few minutes after the jet bridge is connected to the front door of our Airbus.
It's time to leave the cabin of my aircraft of the day after friendly greetings from the crew members present at the door. Last look at Juliette Fox who will have managed to bring us to Lyon with more than 15 minutes in advance ! I think everyone today wanted to finish a little earlier in order to be on time for New Year's Eve diner.
Passage through the baggage claim area without any stops for me. For the first time in about 50 arrivals I would see customs officers waiting to control passengers.
We exit ground-side in the heart of Terminal 1 where a good-sized Christmas tree has been raised. I really think this terminal is a great success. Good news for summer season Air France has finally left the T2, which is starting to really old and unmaintained.
Small detail of the FIDS of the day with a nice mix of destinations from domestic to transatlantic.
I leave Terminal 1 through the large door made of glass and steel.
A short walk is necessary to reach the bus station located between terminals 1 and 2. I will take a bus in order to continue my journey to Grenoble, count 12€ for a little over an hour drive with Flixbus. Some trips can be less than 10€ with Blablabus but on that day the schedule did not suit me.
Toulouse - TLS
Lyon - LYS
As usual, the orange low-cost provides a correct service on these trans country lines neglected by AF. Indeed, there is no interest in taking the national airline on such a route... On the Easyjet side, the prices have inflated post-covid on this line as well as extras (such as luggage) in addition frequencies have also been reduced offering an overall less flexible product to passengers.
Easyjet: + The cabin of the A320 which is equivalent to what is found with certain major airlines such as TAP or British Airways. - The price of extras which are not low-cost at all.
Toulouse: + Easy and cheap access with the tram during the day let's take advantage of this will not last. - Not many shops open at this early hour coffee not good and more expensive than on the plane.
Lyons: + The T1B is really nice - Bus frequencies for Grenoble are struggling to regain their pre-covid level too.
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