Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Flight review - Spring Airlines (Hong Kong-Shanghai) - 9C8598


Aircraft carrier: SPRING AIRLINES
Aircraft type: Airbus 320
Flight duration: 2hr 40min


Overall flight rating: 5.2/10
In-flight food rating: N/A
Staff friendliness:  5.5/10

Once again, I opted for a budget airline but mainly because I booked my trip to Shanghai late, but also because I wanted to experience a new airline.  Generally, the flight was quite standard, the check-in process was a little slow due to minimal staff but they were friendly at the counter.  They politely informed us that the plane was late, so we needed to prepare for a 1 hour delay.  Shanghai had bad weather - I understood when I finally touched down.

It's a shame that Spring Air has a very small fleet, but I guess a lack in on-board service and little legroom would be the key factors I would blame for their slow growth.  They do have potential but they need to be more accommodating to passengers even in small ways.  A cup of water, a small bun or muesli bar would make the night flight much less boring and quiet.  

What amused me when I boarded the plane was that the male flight attendant was dressed as a pilot.  I mistook him at first and only realised when he opened the bathroom doors at the rear of the plane and allowed the last minute passengers to make use of the facilities before departure.  It's a bit awkward, but it seems common in China (see my other flight review post HERE to see what I mean).   


Because my flight was delayed by one hour, I decided to go to the Spotting deck to take a few photos.  I was lucky enough to see the Emirates A380!  In the background, note the green light trail (an aircraft landing)...


Overview of the terminal.  Once again, the light trail is an aircraft but this time departing.


Hong Kong airport is very big, my gate was at some end of the airport I've never been to.  No real restaurants, but at least there were a few small outlets to keep me entertained whilst waiting for my delayed flight.




Even if the terminal catered for a budget airline, it is still wonderful and the architecture is aesthetically pleasing.


The cabin was quite stuffy and the seats had little room.  Once it filled, I didn't feel like making a 2 hour trip. 





We did have quite a bit of unfortunate turbulence closer to Shanghai (explains why the aircraft was delayed on the way over to HK airport), but they pilots managed quite well.  The landing was the fastest I've ever experienced but somehow once it hit the tarmac (very heavily) it was brought to a rapid stop!  They were kind enough to allow me to take away a souvenir (another cockpit photo).  Thank you gents!  

To see where I ended up after this flight, visit my other blog post HERE.

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