Bucharest - Madrid - Bucharest with Blue Air in March 2013 (ep. 1)
In the autumn of last year, in a contest organized by Blue Air, I won one plane tickets round trip to Madrid. This was the destination I chose when I entered the competition, for no particular reason. But it seems to have brought me good luck and I was one of the happy winners. So I decided to welcome spring in the capital of Spain.
During the period 1-3 March 2013, supported by Paravion, I went to find out Madrid at the beginning of spring.
This time I also tested the flight with the low cost operator Blue Air. It was a first for me and I started with some doubts. I have heard many stories, some more beautiful, some less pleasant, about the planes and the conditions offered by the only low-cost Romanian operator. I knew there was no free on-board catering, a service that is missing from most low-cost carriers. So I ate well and hydrated before boarding the Blue Air. I was curious how the 3.5 flight hours would turn out.
It seems that I always have pleasant surprises when I do not have too high expectations. Starting from the fact that I first took place and until the beautiful landing at Otopeni airport, everything was beyond what I could imagine.
The cabin baggage must be exactly the dimensions 55 x 40 x 20 cm.
When you choose to fly with Blue Air, it is clear that you accept the terms and conditions imposed by the operator. I was warned about luggage. The cabin must be exactly 55 x 40 x 20 cm, IATA accredited and must not weigh more than 10 kg. Failure to do so involves additional costs, delays on boarding, quarrels, etc.
There were quite a few cases, on the route Bucharest - Madrid - Bucharest, with people who pretended not to know these rules, with passengers who did not understand that the luggage does not correspond to the dimensions if it does not fit in that place to be tested, with irritated people. , upset. Non-standard cabin baggage is sent to the hold and costs EUR 55. So you better make the effort to fit in.
Dear Romanian, you should accept 100% the conditions imposed by the chosen air carrier. For most airlines, luggage must conform to size and weight standards for proper operation. Airplanes are programmed to withstand certain weights at take-off and landing and aim for optimum fuel consumption based on distance and load. Extra kilos mean higher fuel consumption, and for every low cost, every penny is important.
Plus, because of such people, boarding becomes more difficult and delays occur, which is sanctioned by other passengers and which blame the airline operator. I would blame passengers who do not know how to comply with the boarding conditions. And this is true for everyone, not just for Romanians and not just for low-cost.
I had a pretty practical backpack. In it I had the photo / video equipment and the laptop, wardrobe, etc. For two days I didn't even need more. I could have picked up the dedicated luggage trolley, but I didn't know exactly the check mechanism and didn't want to risk it.
I flew Boeing 737-400 aircraft.
Returning to the flights, they were pleasant. The planes are good, well maintained and clean. I met people who complained about the misery found in them. This was not the case on the aircraft that made Bucharest - Madrid - Bucharest. I can say that we have had the smoothest takeoffs and landings ever experienced. I flew Boeing 737-400s with a capacity of up to 162 seats. The load was very good.
We had good weather on both flights, with no significant turbulence, no other problems. I could see from 10 000 meters Italy, the Mediterranean, the Iberian Peninsula to the destination and return. I can't say too much about chairs. They are with leather upholstery and quite roomy. It is very comfortable to stay in the first place, you have enough room for your feet. I noticed that it is quite ok on the other lines. There are chances that some taller people will not sit very well, situations that can be encountered frequently in the planes of other airlines.
The water of 0.5l is 2 EUR.
In connection with catering, Blue Air offers products for a fee. The water of 0.5l is 2 EUR, the other drinks start from 2 EUR. The grinders start from 1 EUR. I paid 4 EUR for a bottle of water and a chocolate stick. It was the most expensive drinking water, but it was at 10 000 meters :). I would appreciate it very much if the water was free and not necessarily bottled. Given that it flies at 10 000 meters, and the flight duration is 3.5 hours, the man undergoes more dehydration and is better hydrated during the flight.
On board the Blue Air aircraft, I have seen the most beautiful companions on board, so far, from all points of view. They have the patience to explain, smile, thoroughly check that the on-board safety rules are respected by all passengers. On the return was a mixed team. And the hottest phase was landing when an escort attendant secured my jacket with the belt on the free seat next to me, sleeping with the belt on. He woke me close to landing.
What you should remember about Blue Air flight:
- Pay close attention to your hand luggage. It must correspond to the recommended dimensions and weigh a maximum of 10Kg.
- You are entitled to only one cabin baggage. If you have a larger purse and a trolley, you will have to put the purse in the trolley. The same goes for a photo bag and backpack or other cabin luggage.
- It's good to hydrate before boarding the plane. Catering on board is for a fee, and water is expensive.
- Check online where your system allows. Madrid cannot be done online, but it is free at the airport.
- Try not to bargain with luggage if you do not comply with the conditions. Make boarding difficult and do not escape without payment, depending on the deviation.
- Do not crowd at the boarding gate, especially when there are 30 minutes until the scheduled time.
I recommend you visit Madrid, a modern, green city with a very well preserved history. Cheap flights to Madrid can be found from 126 EUR, round trip, plus other taxes depending on the chosen operator.
I wish you the most enjoyable flights. This was my experience, after which I still added 3000 of miles flown to my own collection. If you have had other pleasant or less enjoyable experiences with Blue Air, I invite you to leave a comment on this article.
As a bonus, below you have a photo gallery with Barcelona, the Mediterranean and Italy seen from 9600 meters (the altitude communicated on board the plane).
Photos taken with HTC Onex X.