Trip Reports

Category Archives for Trip Reports.

Shinkansen Sprint -Trip Report: Hiroshima-Kyoto

When I was three, my grandparents bought me my first book of trains. My second book followed when I was four. I must have read that book a hundred times and memorised every word. It was in that book, that I was introduced to the Japanese “Bullet Train” which was launched the year I was born. In 1964, they ran at speeds of up to 210 km/h (130 mph). Now they go up to 320 km/h(200 mph ). Today Japan’s high-speed network is the fourth largest in the world (after China, Spain, Germany) and has the second highest…

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Japanese Efficiency at its best -flying JAL Japan Airlines

JAL became the 97th airline, I have travelled with, 49 years since my first ever air flight. I have a goal of having flown 100 different airlines by my half-century anniversary of flying in May 2018*. Booking Japan has several major airlines. If I had been longer in Japan, I would have liked to sample them all! I chose to fly Japan Airlines (JAL), flag carrier airline of Japan and its second-largest carrier because I wanted to add another airline to my One World collection! Their main rival is ANA (All Nippon Airways) Japan’s largest-they also own Air Japan and low-cost carrier Vanilla Air. Skytrax…

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Regrets or No Regrets? Flying Tiger Australia after a six year absence

Some Background: With a Low-Cost Carrier, you always get what you pay for. Last time, I tried to fly Tiger, I discovered to my chagrin, they close their check-in time 15 minutes earlier than any other airline in Australia! I missed the flight by two minutes and I have not been near them for six years! Today’s flight was a return trip from Melbourne to Canberra in Australia. My trepidation Tiger has had a reputation for poor customer service, extensive nickel and diming, delayed flights and lost luggage. So it was with some trepidation that…

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Australia to Asia Comparing Eight Airlines

Over the last four years, I have averaged a trip from Australia to Thailand every two months. In that time, I have flown nine different airlines on about sixty flights between multiple Australian cities and Bangkok. Some have been direct and others have required transiting at various hubs across Asia. Overall Verdict for these flights Emirates has been the best airline, overall. I scored both my Economy and Business flights an average of: 100% on this routing.  This has been my experience with Emirates on other routes. With Qatar slightly ahead, they are leagues ahead of…

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My First Cebu Pacific Flight

Having tried Philippine Airlines for the first time last week, I was determined to try their fast growing competitor Cebu Pacific. Especially, when I was flying from their own hub. Booking: 2/10 Booking with Cebu Pacific was one of the most mind-blowing frustrating experiences of my life. The website froze seven times in mid-booking over three days! I re-booted my computer multiple times and came back to the website. In frustration, I contacted Cebu Pacific who suggested I did not know what I was doing! Having convinced them that I was a tech savvy frequent…

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My First Philippine Airlines flight

My 1.6 million miles of flying has never before included the Philippines or Philippine Airlines! That changed with this, my 1181st flight. PAL became the 96th airline, I have ever flown. (Not long until my 100th airline). Booking: 7/10 PAL’s system feels a little clunky. After selecting date and routing, the airline presented us with a seemingly confusing array of fare choices! It is really both extremely helpful in choosing the right fare and time and completely overwhelming! They do have a helpful summary explaining what each fare type includes: We chose the cheapest fare possible…

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Cathay Pacific Business Short Hop: Bangkok to Singapore

There is a massive amount of choice between Bangkok and Singapore with at least eleven airlines competing for passengers. I the midst of the clamour, the Cathay pacific option provides a nice calming option. The timing is really nice with an 11:50am departure giving one time to check out of the hotel at a civilised time and get to the airport after morning peak. Arrival into Singapore at 3:20pm gets you to your hotel just before the evening rush in Singapore, allows a check in and shower and then a chance to go for a walk,…

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Etihad Business Cairo to Bangkok summed up in one word: Inconsistent

Today’s review of Etihad’s ride from Cairo to Bangkok through their hub in Abu Dhabi is a perfect example of how I find Etihad’s product can be so inconsistent. When their service is good, it is excellent. When it is bad, it is average! Booking: 10/10 There are a vast array of airlines and flight options from Cairo to Bangkok. Cairo is a very cheap hub in the Middle East for originating flights. In fact, it was cheaper for me to fly from Dubai to Cairo and then fly onto Bangkok back through the UAE than…

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To HEL and back – two more (almost) Heavenly Finnair flights!

Three years ago, I had four pretty nice flights with Finnair. On this occasion, I was particularly looking forward to trying their Airbus 350  for what would be my 1201st flight ever! Booking: 9/10 Finnair runs the only direct service from Bangkok to Helsinki (HEL). During the Finnish winter, the airline offers 16 services a week -mostly for Finns escaping the Northern hemisphere’s cold. From April, the number of flights runs a daily service with a morning departure from Bangkok at 0855 arriving Helsinki at 15:05. The return flight is an overnighter departing HEL at 17:35…

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Flying on an ATR: Vientiane to Bangkok: My first Lao Airlines Flight and my 1200th flight ever!

Booking:8/10 I mentioned last week, that I had reached a milestone” of 1199 flights in my life. This flight was my 1200th. To be honest, this regional hop in Economy was probably not the most exciting option for my 1200th flight ever! Timing, however, dictated this event! There are just a handful of flights between the Laos capital of Vientiane and Thailand’s capital: Bangkok. Our choice effectively came down to Bangkok Airways  (winner of best regional airline) or Lao Airlines. Having already flown ( and loved) Bangkok, I figured that I would give a new airline…

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