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Old 9th May 2010, 22:25   #226
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Thanks. No, am not a pilot, just an aviation enthusiast. I write code of ECU's (Commercial vehicles) for a living. My spouse write code of FMS (Flight Management System)
Are you associated with Airliners-India forum by any chance?
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Old 9th May 2010, 22:44   #227
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Guys.

Need your urgent help - to plan a Europe trip (need to book by today evening). I have the two options (everything else is 20% costlier). What do BHPians recommend?

a. Aeroflot via Moscow. Their safety record is quite decent actually. And they fly 767-300s from Delhi which is safe enough.
b. Swiss via Zurich (+10% cost). Their safety record is a bit tardy, I'm afraid. They ofc fly newer planes all the way so I'm good.

Personally, I am confused. My prejudice is against Aeroflot. But their safety record is actually decent. I am a paranoid flier (flown enough but still paranoid!) care only about safety and a comfortable flight (can survive on chips).

Thanks in advance for ideas!

PS: One thing pissing me off about Aeroflot is that in Moscow, even if I'm transiting and I am delayed for 8 hours in the terminal - I need to have a transit visa bought. Which can happen in a contingency but is just another little thing to be kept in mind!
PPS: I am personally a great fan of all things Swiss & German (been there previously) but the safety record is frankly unsettling.
I would choose SWISS in this case. Apart from safety and comfort, there are a couple other important considerations for me - reliability and service.

At +10%, SWISS is actually much cheaper than Aeroflot. BTW, did you check Finnair ?
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Old 10th May 2010, 12:50   #228
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Are you associated with Airliners-India forum by any chance?
Not exactly, but am a member of Airliners.net community.
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Old 11th May 2010, 01:25   #229
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BA is on a strike again.
BBC News - British Airways strike dates announced

All those travelling on BA flights please do check that your flights are not disrupted.
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Old 11th May 2010, 12:58   #230
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One Urgent question. Which one is a better airline in the US.
Continental or United ? Which has a better Time and Safety record
and other parameters ?
Thanks.
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Old 11th May 2010, 13:14   #231
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Originally Posted by prince_pervez View Post
One Urgent question. Which one is a better airline in the US.
Continental or United ? Which has a better Time and Safety record
and other parameters ?
Thanks.
Continental is surely a better bet if flying within the US.

If flying to/from India, American Air.
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Old 11th May 2010, 14:52   #232
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^^ Thanks a lot man!
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Old 11th May 2010, 16:16   #233
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Originally Posted by panky12345 View Post
Continental is surely a better bet if flying within the US.

If flying to/from India, American Air.
+1 to Continental, I used it couple of times.
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Old 11th May 2010, 18:49   #234
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Gone through the entire thread now and I have to give a 5 star to The Yeti for this - Agree with the ratings. Travelled on most domestic airlines and nothing comes close to the Kingfisher experience - They are good. Cannot add much to the whatever has been stated over here, other than stating that my experience has been fairly similar.

Among the international airlines, this is how my experience has been -

Qantas

They don't treat you like guests - They treat you like parcels - Yes. This is one airline for which a passenger is just a package that needs to be moved from A to B. While they are exceptional in terms of going about their duties, hell, you cannot be robots to people. Me and wifey were checking in to Sydney and my daughter was 5 months old. For some reason, the kid was really cranky. I requested the airline check-in crew if I can make use of the first class check-in counter as there was nobody over there - No is the answer. So, I comeback, stand in the line and let my wife carry the kid to an isolated corner and attend to her.

The flight took off at 9 PM. It generally takes about 30 mins for the take-off procedure after which the seat-belt lights are switched off. Most people on such a flight would expect the drinks and food to be served at around 10 PM and go to sleep. Well, that's not the case - people waited till about 11 PM IST. Most of them were sleeping by 11:30. I was hungry and there was no staff to be seen anywhere near. So, I just had the apple that was part of the 'bag' provided to everyone before take-off and slept. At around 1:30 AM in the night, this genius of the guy wakes up everyone on the flight one after another and goes about enquiring if they would like to have anything in dinner - I mean, I know that you need to meet your norms of feeding the passengers once in every 4 hours but this is not the way !!

Anyway, I took whatever veggie was dished out at me. Wifey was too tired with the kid and I didn't wake her up.

Got up from a deep slumber at around 4 AM IST - didn't know the local time, but, it was well after sunrise. Feeling really thirsty and I ask the attendant for water and I get a great response from the bloke - You can pick it up from there. So, I went there and picked a bottle - trust me, it was a different feeling because it never happened to me on any airline. So, as I walk down, I see a water container with plastic glasses around there - fairly innovative I thought as water is the most frequent request. Having said that, not everything is brilliant as there was no water in the container. I went back to the attendent and tell him that the container was empty and the response was - "You know what mate, if it is empty, it means we have run out of water"
Me: "So, there is no water around to drink"
Attendent: "Nope"
Me: "Can I some juice or Coffee"
Attendent: "Well, how can we make a coffee if there is no water"
Me: "So, what to do now?"
Attendent: "Wait for the flight to land in Sydney"
Me: "And how long is that going to be"
Attendent: "Another 4 to 5 hours"

Well, I go back to my seat and sit tight. Mumbai to Sydney is close to 13 hours flight and as per norms, the flight attends have to rest after a certain amount of time and this comes as a big respite for me. Being in the very first row of seats (the basenet ones for the infants), there was this middle aged lady who walks onto our section of the flight and changes things for good -

Another passenger from the rear asks for water and the lady walks with a 500 ml bottle for Mount Franklin water for him. Immediately, I request her for some water and a cup of coffee - I wonder the speed at which this lady works - 500 ml of pure water and a cup of coffee in about 30 seconds - WoW

Rest of the flight was as it was supposed to be - awesome. So, we disembark the flight and immigration at sydney was a long queue - it always is considering the amount of care they take in border controls and immigration controls. As I was picking up my bags, I realised that one of the suitcases was quite deformed - It is a polycarbonate one of VIP - not the sadak chaap maal - then I realise the issue - a few items checked in as fragile by others were damaged - This is one airline that cares very less for a fragile sticker - Unless, they are convinced that the item in indeed fragile, they just don't care about it.

The experience with Qantas has been very bad on all the three flights I had on them - Barring the lady who rescued me of some serious torture and thrist, I never had a great time with them. The local newspapers in Australia have atleast one news item in a week that would crib about some or other aspect of Qantas - and I completely agree with them - the only solace is that Qantas as an airline never lost an aircraft - they have a very good safety record - Very good point to boast about but, a little gratitude shown towards the passengers would certainly help.

Coming up next - Singapore Airlines

Last edited by bbkp : 11th May 2010 at 18:51.
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Old 12th May 2010, 10:16   #235
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Singapore Airlines

If ever there was an airline that 99.99999% would overwhelmingly agree to be a 5 star - this is it. The 0.000001% would give it a 4 star.

Check-in - Super fast - It is a breeze.

Aircrafts - Most of them modern and upto date with the latest designs. Comfortable seats, very good leg space, clean toilets - Just about the correct combination of what is needed on long hauls. The entertainment system is one of the best. Which other international airline can boast of 3 or 4 Hindi, 2 to 3 Tamil and 2 to 3 Telugu Movie channels in their In-flight entertainment system - This on a Singapore - Sydney Flight. It is not just the Indians who were getting pampered because there was a similar load of hollywood, chinese, thai, german and french movies on it - truely amazing. The 8 hours from Singapore to Sydney was gone by in no time - it was completely lost in Casino Royale and Rajnikant - As if that was not enough, I didn't even see Balayya and Happy Feet.

Food and Drinks - If you happen to be from the Arctic Ice Belt and it is your first trip abroad and you have always had nothing but Seals and a few local fishes as your staple diet and insist on the same - Trust me, this is one airline that will make every effort to get you exactly that. Being a Veggie, my food habits are restricted - To top it up, I am allergic to a few veggies - So, I take extra care while booking on any airline that is not Indian. And this airline never disappoints - They get you exactly what you have wanted.
Drinks is mostly a standard fare - The beauty however is the staff is exceptionally trained in terms of making out who can handle and who can't - So, the drinks just keep flowing till you can handle it.

Staff - This is according to be the key differentiator - The staff is just amazing - Polite, welcoming and exceptionally helpful. Infact, they make you feel humble. I haven't come across an unruly passenger on Singapore Airlines - if at all there was one, the staff is so good at handling the situation that even passengers from the next row will not come to know what happened - It is very rare - very very rare.

All said and done, one of the key factors that makes the south east asian airlines tick is the fact that they are catering to major ports - Bangkok, Hongkong, Kaula Lumpur, Singapore - These cities are major travel ports, junction points and not to mention, they are major tourist destinations. All the major airlines catering out of these airports are quite good (with some reservations on Malaysia Airlines) and so are the airports - So, what you get is a whole package - a fantastic airline and a fantastic airport.

It is almost as the immediate second thought that the Changi Airport appears in your mind as and when you start thinking of Singapore Airlines and Changi indeed is one of the best - infact, exceptional. To me, you get half of your money's worth just by going around the Changi Airport and coming back - Think of what a passenger might need and you have it in Changi

Tired legs - You have numerous massage machines
Hungry - It has got one of the best food courts
Passing time - There is so much to do at Changi - Shopping at Changi is a sheer pleasure

I don't recall a single issue that I have had in my extensive travel on Singapore Airlines - Their economy class is better than business class on some of the other airlines - and you cannot find even a single area where they are found to a notch lower.
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Old 14th May 2010, 14:09   #236
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Originally Posted by A350XWB View Post
Not exactly, but am a member of Airliners.net community.
Airliners.net has been the reason as to why I'm hooked to Civil Aviation but I'm not a member. There were days when I was hooked to their forum as I'm to TBHP now but still love their Photos.

Quote:
Originally Posted by prince_pervez View Post
One Urgent question. Which one is a better airline in the US.
Continental or United ? Which has a better Time and Safety record
and other parameters ?
Thanks.
They've merged now but I don't think there is any immediate change in the onboard product and service.
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Old 13th June 2010, 12:45   #237
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Guys, I need help. Planing a eurp trip and need to know which is the better airline from bangalore.

option 1:
BLR-Dubai-Paris- Emirates

option 2:
BLR-Frankfurt-Paris- Lufthansa

Option 3:
Blr-Mumbai-GoAi
Mumbai-Zurich- Swiss Air.

Once i land in europe, i need a rail pass, as I am doing a 12 day tour of Italy, Swiss, France and Amsterdam, Please suggest which is the better rail service as I heard there are 4 train operators and costs vary.

Euro has fallen to 56 to a ruppee now.

Bhpian's, please suggest.
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Old 14th June 2010, 09:42   #238
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Originally Posted by sajands View Post
Guys, I need help. Planing a eurp trip and need to know which is the better airline from bangalore.

option 1:
BLR-Dubai-Paris- Emirates

option 2:
BLR-Frankfurt-Paris- Lufthansa

Option 3:
Blr-Mumbai-GoAi
Mumbai-Zurich- Swiss Air.

....
I would recommend Emirates if you are flying westwards. Singapore Air is the best if going east. Both has wonderful planes and amazing airports. I am traveling this weekend to the Big Apple by Emirates.
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Old 14th June 2010, 10:14   #239
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sajands View Post
Guys, I need help. Planing a eurp trip and need to know which is the better airline from bangalore.

option 1:
BLR-Dubai-Paris- Emirates

option 2:
BLR-Frankfurt-Paris- Lufthansa

Option 3:
Blr-Mumbai-GoAi
Mumbai-Zurich- Swiss Air.

Once i land in europe, i need a rail pass, as I am doing a 12 day tour of Italy, Swiss, France and Amsterdam, Please suggest which is the better rail service as I heard there are 4 train operators and costs vary.

Euro has fallen to 56 to a ruppee now.

Bhpian's, please suggest.

Please qualify the word "better". This varies from people to people. For punctuality and efficient service Lufthansa is better; for food, JetAirways, Emirates and even Air India may be better; for cost, Finnair may be better; for your specific itinerary, something else may be better.

Buying a rail pass for travel in Europe is a complex task if you intend to optimize your cost. There are many permutations and combinations available. If you have time and you enjoy doing itinerary planning, you may try it out, or else leave it to the travel agent.
Rail pass works best if you are mostly in train during your trip. Otherwise, P2P fares may be cheaper. Sometimes, a combination works best - for example, buy a 4-day Swiss-only pass and go for P2P for rest of the itinerary.

If you opt for P2P rail tickets, you may be better off with an European Airlines than an Asian one. If you can figure out why, then do the itinerary planning on your own. If you can't, leave it to your travel agent.
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Old 14th June 2010, 18:22   #240
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sajands View Post
Guys, I need help. Planing a eurp trip and need to know which is the better airline from bangalore.

option 1:
BLR-Dubai-Paris- Emirates

option 2:
BLR-Frankfurt-Paris- Lufthansa

Option 3:
Blr-Mumbai-GoAi
Mumbai-Zurich- Swiss Air.
Depends on your priorities. I personally avoid Emirates due to 2 reasons - the flight times and the Dubai airport. Service is good and the aircrafts have IFE systems even in economy.

Lufthansa, service and food are not great, but are punctual and the aircrafts are well maintained even though they do not offer facilities like Emirates.

If you are travelling J or F, both are similar.

Wonder why you don't consider AF as you are planning to fly to Paris (BLR-CDG).
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