Taking a flight at 05:00AM, especially after a Flight Report Meet-up, that finished at around 01:00AM (plus an after in our room until 02:15AM) is definitively not a good idea. But I had no other choice, as I had to fly to Canada the following day. So this was the only flight that left me enough room to come back home, switch bags and fly again :)
My taxi was ordered for 03:00AM and after the guys left the room at 02:15AM sleeping was absolutely not an option anymore, otherwise I would never have woken up.
The taxi shows up on time, which was the only choice to go to the airport, public transportation does not run at that time. When I arrived I paid 24€ (day and week day), for the return journey, night and Sunday, I only paid 11€. There was a bug somewhere, and I felt I paid ways to much outbound, but that's life.
I arrived at the airport at 03:15AM, and it looked like an El Al departure hall a Shabbat day. Empty, absolutely empty. No shops, no coffee available, nothing. As I only had carry on, I printed my boarding pass and that was it. I just made a quick stop at the counter to inquire about the lounge opening and as I thought, it would only open at 05:00AM. That was the time my flight was due to leave. No lounge then.
I headed to security and only one filter is open. There are 6 people before me and the wait took over 15. I have never seen travelers and staff so slow. The staff requested people to put every single item in one container. One for the laptop, one for the jacket, one for the liquids, one for the phone, one for the belt, one for the watch, and so on. It took ages.
I desperately needed a soft drink. After a night with a good load of alcohol I was in need of à 0° drink. Everything was closed, I put 2€ in a vending machine that would not give me the requested drink. I ended drinking water in the toilets :(
This brought me to the boarding time, which will be done as usual with respect of all priorities. The flight was pretty empty, 50% load max.
At the very end of the boarding a young lady took the aisle seat in my row, sat for two minute and went to the cockpit. It was the captain's wife. She was very discreet and did not make use of the I am the wife of the boss legend ^^ I was just a bit unhappy as I was planning to have the row for myself to get a bit of sleep.
After takeoff, as I haven't seen her coming back, I thought she might stay for the flight in the cockpit, so I began to arrange a little bed, and at that moment, she came back. She laughed and said she'll seat at the empty third row to give us more room. My unhappiness changed to being happy again :)
This time pillows and blankets are being handed out for all business passengers, and the purser tells everyone that breakfast would be served within 10 minutes. That's a nice touch, as I was planning to sleep, but to know when the breakfast would arrive helped me staying awake :)
In the meantime, the pitch and the safety card:
Some cabin shoots and the recline of the seat (much more as in Y):
Very hot towel to begin:
Followed by drinks. The orange juice was freshly squeezed and absolutely divine:
No menu on this flights, options are being told verbally. Either a sweet option with pancakes or a salty croque-monsieur, which I took:
That came with cold cuts, yogurt, fruits, bread / croissant.
The hot dish was a good surprise, it looked dry and tasteless, but it was good. Not excellent, but it hit the spot. The cold cuts were nice, fruits and yogurt also. It was a good breakfast.
Next is the brand new full flat, full access KLM 737 seat:
OK, this is a three seater row, and to be very honest, it was not comfortable. The seat belts hit the back, and length is not sufficient. I however, could close my eyes for a few minutes :)
Wonderful sun rise:
On time arrival in AMS, greeted by this UA 767:
Mini bonus to end with the lovely room we had at the Lisbon Double Tree Hilton, with the beautiful terrace where we could spot the AF A318 with no less than 10 Flight Reporter aboard.
No FR for the last leg, I slept the whole flight ^
Lisbon - LIS
Amsterdam - AMS
All in all it was a good flight, but some comments:
The cabin was comfortable enough but nothing exceptional. The crew was top, the food good. No IFE but newspapers were available. On time flight.
6 passengers and 15 minutes to wait for security is very bad, LIS airport is easily accessible. Everything was closed but we were the first flight to leave so I don't expect shops to be opened. What is unacceptable, however, is that the airport was really dirty.
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