British Airways: London Heathrow to Paris CDG

Profile picture for user T5

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19 years 9 months

Posts: 6,503

Okay, I won't babble on forever (like I usually do). This was a quick flight, so not a great deal to say. Monday 27 February British Airways 306, London Heathrow to Paris Charles-de-Gaulle Everything was in place and organised for this day trip to Paris, to take in just some of the sights that the city has to offer. I had checked in the previous day using the excellent online check-in facility that British Airways boasts. Before the day of the flight, I had no idea what aircraft I would be flying on. According to the website when I booked the trip, it was going to be an A320, but then another website told me it was going to be an A319. In actual fact, it was an Airbus A321 - one of the newest additions to the British Airways fleet, registered G-EUXF. Anyway, we eventually used the Railair coach service from Reading after a massive ******-up with the local train service and arrived at Heathrow Terminal 1 at about 8:00am. We had to get to Terminal 4 for today's flight, but a quick, free ride on the Heathrow Express got us there in no time. Its great that travel between terminals 1, 2 and 3 and terminal 4 are free on this train service and total journey time is a mere 4 minutes. Terminal 4 was quite busy and check-in was dominated by KLM and of course, British Airways. Like I said, I had checked in online so was told to go the Fast Bag Drop desk to collect the boarding cards. There was no queue here and they were handed over to us within seconds. By now, it was 8:30am and we still had to clear security. The queues were rather long and moving very slowly - too slowly for my liking. And what bothered me even more was that my travelling companion, who I was quite happily chatting away to, was taken out of the queue and given an x-ray search, something that Heathrow still seems to be testing out. Even after such a rigorous search, she was finished much sooner than I was. I still had to wait for a further 10 minutes before I got to the metal detector. Because I set the alarm off, it delayed us a few minutes more. As we walked into the departure lounge, we had intended to sit down and enjoy a hot drink and a bite to eat, but according the information screens, our flight was boarding already at Gate 1B. So we had to do away with our breakfast and trek to the gate. Next to ours was a flight departing for Brussels. Anyway, we had our passports and boarding cards checked and walked down into gate area, which was already very busy, but looking out of the window, I couldn't see an aircraft, so it was clear that we would be bussed to it later on. About five minutes later, no announcement was made, but a big glass door was opened and we walked down a long narrow slope which took us airside to board buses. I still believed as we slowed down by G-EUPY that the flight was going to be on an A319, but we moved a few feet more and stopped by the A321 next to it. We climbed the stairs to the aircraft and were greeted by the Purser. She had a quick check of our boarding cards and pointed us towards our seats - 18E and 18F - in the centre of the aircraft. Several announcements were made as we got ourselves comfortable for the quick flight, welcoming us on board the flight and detailed information about our route that morning. Our cruise altitude was going to be 23,000ft and our flight time was going to be around 40 minutes, meaning that we should arrive in Paris almost right on time. We were scheduled to depart at 9:20am and just before 9:25am, we were pushed off of the stand and began our taxi to runway 27R, a good few minutes away from Terminal 4. The flight was very full this morning. I couldn't spot a single empty seat from where I was. At around 9:40am, we departed. After a minute or two, the aircraft banked to the right and headed for the South of England and the English Channel. For the duration of the flight, the progress being made could be monitored on the LCD screens which were suspended from the ceiling. The cabin service was quick as there were seven members of crew on the flight, serving drinks and the morning snack - a hot cheese and ham roll served with a small carton of orange juice. Tea and coffee was served also. The service was very efficient and as the passengers at the rear of the aircraft were being served, the litter from those at the front was already being cleared away. The seatbelt sign popped on about 15 minutes before landing and we enjoyed some nice views through the broken clouds of the French countryside that we were passing over. At 11:30am (5 minutes early) we landed in Paris and used the entire runway to come to a stop, turning off right at the end. Typical Charles-de-Gaulle meant that we now had a ten minute taxi to Terminal 2B, where we would disembark. We taxied behind a TAROM 737-300 and then eventually parked up next to it. We disembarked fairly quickly and passed into the terminal. It was so bright and fresh, not like Terminal 1, which looks like a cave inside, with its brown stone walls. We joined a queue for passport control, laughed at a man who fell over and then went to the train station to catch the train to the city. Monday 27 February British Airways 329, Paris Charles-de-Gaulle to London Heathrow Before we knew it, it was time to head back to the airport. We still had to collect our boarding cards again, even though we had checked in, so we didn't want to have to join big queues. We arrived back at the airport just over 2 hours before we were due to depart for London and upon noticing that flight 327 had been cancelled, something suggested to me that we were going to be on another very full flight. British Airways had six check-in desks open and none of which were in use, so we were quickly served and given our cards for seats 32A and 32B, the second from last row on the A321 which would be flying us home. The Terminal was rather lame for shopping, but picked up some cigarettes anyway and then went and passed through security and sat in the gate area. After about 45 minutes of waiting, somebody approached us and asked us to go to the gate next door, just as an Air France A320 pulled onto the stand. Obviously our flight - which was due to arrive 10 minutes or so later - wasn't going to be leaving from this gate. The gate area filled up really quickly and some passengers were left standing as there were no seats going spare. In the distance, I could see the A321 taxiing towards us. It passed us, turned around and then came back, at which point I was able to get a glimpse of the registration - G-EUXF (again). Not the end of the world. It wasn't too long before a queue formed to board the aircraft, but before we could get on board, a blind passenger and a man in a wheelchair had to be assisted on. But the queue then started to move very quickly and before we knew it, we were walking to our seats on the aircraft. We had quite a trek to the back of the aircraft and made ourselves comfortable next to the window. We were scheduled to depart at 9:45pm and not too long after this, we pushed back from the terminal and began the taxi to the runway, which took around 10 minutes. We arrived at runway 9L and departed, hitting turbulence just a minute or two after taking off. Like this morning, cabin service on this very full flight began very quickly. The snack was a cheese and pickle sandwich and a tub of fruit salad. Soft and hot drinks were also served, but the turbulence meant that hot drinks had to come to an end almost as soon as they started to be offered. The seven crew members quickly worked to clear everything, just as the Captain announced that we were well into our descent. After little over 40 minutes in the air, we landed on runway 27R, which meant we couldn't have been any further from Terminal 4, but the brakes were applied very firmly and we made a quick exit, cutting past Terminal 3, over runway 27L/9R and into Terminal 4, where this time we were able to make use of the jetty for a quick escape. Ours was the last arrival into the terminal of the day, so it was a little quiet. Overall, a decent set of flights provided by British Airways. At £79.40 each, it wasn't the cheapest option available, but I rate them so highly for their short-haul and domestic flights, so I was happy to spend this money on their services, compared to the £65 or so quoted by bmi. But their inflight service seems to have deteriorated since my last flight with them, to Manchester, back in August. That flight had three choices of snack, whereas this one had one choice only. And whatever happened to alcohol being served on British Airways? Nevertheless, the flights were both on time, the crew were really friendly and efficient at what they were doing and the shiny new(-ish) A321 was a nice treat, meaning that I've now flown on every short haul aircraft type in the British Airways fleet - A319, A320, A321, B757 and B767.
Original post
Profile picture for user gary o

Member for

13 years 7 months

Posts: 565

I find the A321 a very nice aircraft to fly on,definitley my favourite,bmi & Aer Lingus aircraft are totally different inside though,bmi's cabin is much nicer,altough aer lingus have re-vamped their's with leather seats & increased seating to 212,since i went to majorca with them,must go on a spin over to LHR on one.
Profile picture for user tomfellows

Member for

14 years 6 months

Posts: 1,995

meaning that I've now flown on every short haul aircraft type in the British Airways fleet - A319, A320, A321, B757 and B767.[/COLOR]
They do fly the 737 as well, unless your talking about the short haul aircraft from LHR :) An excellent detailed report there :D :D A great read :) Tom

Member for

16 years 4 months

Posts: 1,089

That flight had three choices of snack, whereas this one had one choice only.
BA have never served a choice of 3 snacks on flights as short as MAN and CDG (unless catering got it wrong that day). What we used to have was 1 option with a vegetarian alternative. Now the option has been effectively removed by offering only vegetarian fillings which should be acceptable to all, eg: your cheese and pickle.
And whatever happened to alcohol being served on British Airways?
Alcohol would have been available on both of your flights, and indeed all BA flights. In the morning tea and coffee are offered and alcohol is available on request. The rest of the day we offer tea, coffee and drinks (which includes alcohol). Glad you enjoyed your flights. 1L.
Profile picture for user philgatwick05

Member for

14 years 4 months

Posts: 1,614

Nice report there - well worth taking the time to read.