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Airport Experience [Questions & Reviews)

Jerry

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Qatar uses third party lounges at a number of its smaller airports, as a look through the first three pages of Qatar lounge reports in Skytrax will show at the below link. It's not only the CWL lounge (by coincidence the latest lounge reported on) that receives the thumbs down, although I'm not sure if the refurbished lounge was open when Qatar began flying from CWL.

http://www.airlinequality.com/lounge-reviews/qatar-airways/page/1/
I think that is the current lounge. I think his review is a bit harsh! But i think the problem for Cardiff is that people using Qatar who have previously used Heathrow will automatically compare it to Heathrow and i don't think Cardiff could ever get to that standard in the current terminal. Maybe in any future new terminal possibly.
 

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Jerry

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At the airport now for my flight to Edinburgh and so far no problems! Security was a breeze and the departure area is pretty quiet, it does look i missed the rush with a TCX and TUI departing at 5.45 and 6 am this morning.
 

Jerry

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My sister flew into Cardiff yesterday for the first time. She flew in on the 22.55 arrival from Faro with Flybe had a good flight that was full of golfers. Immigration she said was a breeze but baggage was a bit slow in arriving but apart from that she had a good experience.
I think she's flying to Dublin on Wednesday with Flybe so I'll try and get her thoughts on the departure experience.
 

Jerry

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At the airport now and security was a breeze! I was the only passenger going through security at the time! Very quiet now in the departure lounge as all of the first wave flights have departed now.
 

Jerry

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My day trip to Anglesey last Wednesday

As many of you may know last Wednesday (31/10/18) i did a day trip to Anglesey from Cardiff to do some planespotting at RAF Valley.
The flight was booked through Flybe but was operated by Eastern Airways on one their BAe Jetstream 41 aircraft G-MAJB which operated both flights on that day. The flight cost with seat selection £50 for a return flight booked through Flybe.
When i arrived at CWL in the morning at 6am the check in area was empty but for both flights i had already checked in online so i went straight through to security and i was the only passenger going through at the time so that was quick! I did notice that to the left part of the security area it was screened off and through the gaps in the screen it looked like there was some sort of work going on there.
The departure lounge was generally quiet with Costa coffee being the busiset part and once the Flybe flights to Dublin and Edinburgh had been called the whole departure lounge was practically empty so i had no trouble finding a seat!
The flight was called for boarding around 07.10 at gate 8 and when i got there my bag was tagged as it was too big to go in the cabin and had to go in the hold. When approaching the aircraft there is a valet cart where you put your bag on for it to go into the hold and i collected it from a similar one on arrival at VLY and the procedure was repeated for the return flight.
Overall on both flights the service was very good with sweets handed out prior to departure and a free snack (crisps, chocolate or a cereal bar) and a complimentary beverage (tea, coffee, water or soft drinks) was available and on the return flight in the evening a hot towel was given out. The seats were comfortable but the leg room wasn't the greatest and they were quite narrow but the J41 was a great aircraft to fly on! A lot less noisy than i thought it would be. Eastern are definitely a good airline to fly with.
The terminal at Anglesey was small with a small departure lounge and a security scanner in a room before the departure lounge but the experience was quick and that was hepled by me being the only passenger there for at least an hour! There was also free tea and coffee provided which helped warm me up!
Overall the whole experience was a good one on both ends with both flights pretty full (18 on the way up and 16 on the way back) and the passengers were a mix of people from all walks of life from business people to tourists and people visiting family and maybe there was even a politician or two! If anyone was thinking of going to North Wales from Cardiff/South Wales/Bristol then i'd definitely recommend using this flight as it is a lot easier than the long road or train journey and if you are lucky and get a clear day there'll be some great views of Wales.





 

superking

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#74
Wasn't prince William based at valley when he was doing search and rescue.The military stopped doing it and didn't bristows take it on.You are right Jerry search and rescue still based in private hands.
 

Jerry

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Wasn't prince William based at valley when he was doing search and rescue.The military stopped doing it and didn't bristows take it on.You are right Jerry search and rescue still based in private hands.
Yep Prince William did operate out of RAF Valley for a while flying the search and rescue yellow Sea Kings. Idk know where the search and rescue is based now. Whether they stayed at Valley or moved elsewhere?
 

Severn

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#77
I went to CWL this morning to pick up my partner arriving on the Qatar 05:40 arrival from Sydney via Doha. I was supposed to be on the same flight, however ended up in the USA and only arrived back on the daylight flight from Chicago yesterday.

I'm afraid neither of us had the best experience being passenger or picker-upper.
The signage at the airport for drivers (in my opinion) is some of the worst I've come across. I spend a lot of time at all sorts of airports, in hire cars, taxis, and public transport and I did not find it user friendly at all. Just getting to the meet & greet parking meant going through a set of barriers by the terminal, then directed passed the terminal to another set of barriers to exit... then 20 metres later, entered another set of barriers which finally took me into to the car park section. At this point all signage just stopped! I followed another car into that section who also drove round looking lost and trying to find out if we were in the right section and where to park!

Once I had worked out where to park I walked into the arrivals part of the terminal, and waited with a few others for the passengers from the Doha flight. Whilst waiting I found it a little strange that the taxi desk next to the arrivals entrance was showing Jeremy Kyle, at quite some volume. This went on for nearly the whole time I was there which I found a little...unusual? Surely BBC News or Sky News might be more appropriate?

The aircraft got onto stand just after 05:30 and first passengers started walking out of arrivals around 20 mins afterwards. I was expecting it might be a little quicker than that, especially given that there were no other arrivals until 09:00, and only two departing flights over the next hour (AMS at 06:00, BHD at 06:20 (which departed 2 hours late)).

My partner was one of the first through security but on getting to baggage reclaim the bags were very slow arriving onto the belt. She, along with most of the other passengers waited 20-30mins for their bags and by the time she came out into arrivals, (she was 75th out of the door (yes, I counted)), it had been 45 mins since arriving onto stand. This seemed pretty slow especially given how quiet the airport was. I heard a few others in the arrivals hall also voicing their displeasure at how long it was taking for their friends/relatives to get out.

I of course stopped counting at 75, but apparently there weren't many people left at the belt when my partner finally got her bags and came through to arrivals. She also saw numerous empty rows (in both cabins) so it seems likely that it was quite a light load on the flight.

Having paid £3(!) and found our way out of the car park we exited past the BA hangar, and straight away onto the main road which had no street lighting for quite a stretch. Given the rain was coming down at this point and it was of course still dark outside, it wasn't particularly friendly roads! From there the roads had streetlights but otherwise didn't improve much and from the airport to the motorway took over half an hour.
 

TheLocalYokel

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Do you intend giving the details to the airport, Severn? Obviously the unloading is down to the airline and its handlers but airport signage is clearly the responsibiity of the airport.

How do airports check the efficacy of signage? I wonder if it's the same unrealistic way of certificating new aircraft types where young and fit people have to evacuate within a given time, whereas in real life many aircraft passengers are elderly and/or infirm and would take far longer to get out.

In the same way, do airports use savvy people to check their signage instead of asking those who have never been to that particular airport before to find their way around?

I don't believe that my wife and I are completely thick but we sometimes struggle to find our way around airport terminals where signage can be confusing or non-existent. The worst situations are where the signage is fine for a while - say you are looking for something like a lounge - and then completely disappears, leaving the unfortunate traveller scratching his or her head.
 

Seasider

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#79
Because it is a quiet time at the airport doesn't mean it will be quicker to pass through. For example, why employ 5 staff at immigration to get the pax through in 10 mins when you can employ 2 staff and it takes 25mins. Some pax will have to wait longer but you have saved quite a bit of brass (money). Apply this to the baggage unloading as well.
I not proposing that this is how it should be done, but a possible explanation as to why it took so long.
 

Jerry

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With immigration i doubt it helps that Cardiff had the e gates taken away from them as they are only for the big airports!
 

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