LHR-GLA-LHR with bmi British Midland

Profile picture for user T5

Member for

19 years 9 months

Posts: 6,503

Okay, so maybe not the most exciting report in the world. Just another domestic flight and my second trip in about 7 weeks with the excellent bmi British Midland. London Heathrow to Glasgow - Monday 26 July - BD004 I booked my return trip to Scotland with bmi British Midland just 3 weeks before I was due to travel. I was expecting to pay much more than the £67 I did. The flight was scheduled for an 11.15am departure from Heathrow's terminal 1. I arrived at 8.45am in order to take advantage of the 2 and a half hour check-in allowance set by the airline. After joining the queue for check-in, I was pleased with the speed at which passengers were checked in for their flights. With about 20 people ahead of me, it took just 5 to 10 minutes until it was my turn to dispose of my luggage and get my boarding cards. Since we had booked with expedia.co.uk, we had already been assigned our seat numbers - 4A and 4C. With two of us travelling, I couldn't understand why we had not been seated together. The security at Heathrow was a breeze and took only a couple of minutes to pass through. We grabbed a seat at gate 8, as told by the check-in staff and waited about 90 minutes for anything to happen. At this time, aircraft were arriving on 27R and departing from the parallel runway, 27L. Arriving traffic was as you would usually expect - lots of British airlines, European carriers and American 777s etc. About 35 minutes before departure, there was a gate change and we had to proceed to gate 79, just a few minutes walk away. The passengers for the flight gathered at the gate and within 5 minutes, boarding was well underway. The Airbus A321 providing this service was G-MIDM and it was very clean and tidy inside with a friendly bunch of crew in the cabin and a talkative Captain. The seating mystery was soon resolved once on board. I wondered why two passengers travelling together had not been seated together. It was due to the fact that row 4 was the first row of economy, although its seats could be adapted to make Business Class seats. This involves moving the two inside arm rests towards one another, effectively getting rid of the B seat and making the A and C seat much wider. Needless to say, I was very comfortable! With at least 10 minutes until departure, we looked completely full up and the aircraft was just about ready for departure. We waited... and waited... and waited... until finally, a flight dispatcher boarded the aircraft and searched for a passenger. She asked for some paperwork from him and said that until she had it, the flight could not depart. The passenger grabbed his suitcase and left the aircraft for a few minutes. He got back on soon afterwards. At about 11.25am (just 10 minutes late), we pushed back and taxiied behind G-MIDL, which was bound for Edinburgh, to runway 27L. There was only this one aircraft ahead of us and we were airborne practically straight away. The Captain spoke and gave us a flight time of just 1 hour. Cabin service commenced quickly and a choice of bread rolls was available. I opted for the ham and mustard, washed down with a nice cold Pepsi. Once the rubbish was cleared away, descent was under way into Glasgow. We landed just a minute or two behind schedule at about 12.38pm, instead of 12.35pm. The aircraft quickly taxiied to the terminal and the doors (both the front and the rear) were opened to disembark the 180 or so passengers on board. Glasgow to London Heathrow - Thursday 29 July - BD013 Because our hired car had to be back at Glasgow Airport by about 11.00am, we were much too early for our return flight to London which was not departing until 7.25pm! We asked the bmi staff if we could check in our baggage so that we could disappear off (by bus) into the City Centre. It was not possible, but we were advised that the Lost Luggage Office operate a holding facility at a charge of £2 per bag for up to 4 hours, £3 for up to 24 hours. Not bad I guess! Bored of the City Centre, we returned to Glasgow Airport at about 3.15pm and looked for things to do. It turned out that bmi had a 5.15pm departure to London, so we asked if it would be possible to fly home on this flight instead of the later one. At a cost of £159 each, we decided to pass. Because we were travelling on the cheapest possible tickets, we had to "upgrade" them. At 5.00pm, we joined the queue for check-in. There were just a few people ahead of us who were travelling to Leeds Bradford and a couple of businessmen who, like us, were bound for Heathrow. We were issued boarding cards for seats 8E and 8F, which we knew we were getting anyway. I was slightly disappointed with the seats, but couldn't be bothered to have them changed. We went straight to gate 25 afterwards which was slightly crowded with people waiting for flight 11 to Heathrow - the one we wanted to be on. This 5.15pm service was running a few minutes late, as boarding didn't even begin until this time. Once they had disappeared, the lounge was empty. Over the next hour or so, the lounge gradually filled up with passengers travelling to Leeds Bradford at 7.20pm, London Heathrow at 7.25pm and Manchester at 7.55pm. Whilst awaiting the arrival of our Airbus A321 aircraft, I could see some activity at the International terminal opposite. An Air Malta 737 arrived and departed about an hour later, a First Choice 757 pushed back and departed, a Thomas Cook 757 (without a logo on the tail) pushed back and finally, an Air-Scotland.com 757 departed. Within minutes of each other, a Fokker F100 and an Airbus A321 touched down and taxiied to gates 24 and 25. One was going to LBA, the other to LHR. We were advised that there may be a delay to our service. As I peered out of the window, lots of cleaners poured onto the aircraft, equipped with mops and buckets. As for the F100, boarding began about 5 minutes after arriving. I think I counted about 12 passengers boarding the aircraft! G-MIDJ was boarding just as the F100 pushed back. A nice, quick procedure, which was complete within just a few minutes. I was sat in seat 8E and did not have a seat next to me. Seat F did not exist. There was a big space and the panel which supported the crew seat behind. By leaning over, I could just about see out of the window. We departed about 5 minutes late and arrived on runway 27L at Heathrow at about 8.40pm, some 15 minutes early! On board, it was the same service again - a snack and a drink. I had a can of 'pop' and a Chicken Mayonnaise and sweetcorn sandwich. Outstanding service on both flights! Well done bmi! :)
Original post
Profile picture for user BigJet

Member for

15 years 7 months

Posts: 1,670

good report, and how many passengers do the foker 100's hold usually?
Profile picture for user LBARULES

Member for

16 years 5 months

Posts: 9,401

Great report as ever Michael :) Fokker 100s surprisingly hold around 100 people!

Member for

15 years 8 months

Posts: 1,098

Good report Michael.
Profile picture for user SHAMROCK321

Member for

15 years 8 months

Posts: 2,495

Fokker 100s can hold 120 maximum.
Profile picture for user T5

Member for

19 years 9 months

Posts: 6,503

Fokker 100s can hold 120 maximum.
What a total waste that was then. The aircraft was filled to just 10% of its total capacity :eek:
Profile picture for user starjet

Member for

16 years 4 months

Posts: 460

Good report, Michael. Most Fokker 100s are configured for 95 or 100 people.