I am an ardent fan of Airliners.net and have been meaning to write a trip report for a long time. Did not get a chance to write till now since I would usually forget to take the photos or record the details. This time I did most of what I can do and it was a pretty happening trip.
Air India started a direct Dreamliner service in the beginning of march from Cochin to Dubai. The flight originated from Delhi and the DEL-COK leg started from the International terminal. Our team has planned . I had an amazing trip with my team at a little know place in Himachal called Jibhi
. We reached Delhi T3 by 2.00 am for my flight at 5.10 A.M . The international terminal was crowded at that time and Air India check in was at snail pace. The queue was not moving at all and have to stay in queue for about 20 minutes before I got the chance to get to check in agent.
The next was immigration queue that was also very long and domestic passenger also have to wait for the turn. Another 20 minutes of wait and I got into the terminal.
Date : 27 Feb 2017
Flight : AI 933
ETD : 5:10 AM
ATD : 5.30 AM
Seat : 39 A
While in Dreamliner I always pick seat 39A even though its very near to the toilet it has decent recline and is the only couple seat in Y Class. The other advantage is the 2 windows you get
The mandatory leg room shot.The Landing Gear Scenario
Ever since I started flying I always thought I will be involved in an emergency landing at one point of time. This was supposed to be that time. The flight took off and one thing I really admire dreamliner is its a mean machine the takeoff was smooth . After 10-15 I observed we have not gained much height and was wondering whats happening by around 5.50 AM Captain came online and announced that due to some technical snag we are returning back to Delhi not much details. I thought the Flight attendants would now emerge and help in some sort of landing preperedness but nothing happened. They were busy in their general area and no one was there to answer to the general confusion of passengers. The flight landed at 6.01 AM and then the wait started. Ideally at this point you would expect some announcement or something- Well Air India staff work with the attitude that every word you speak there is some deduction in salary - so no communication and at 6.29 AM the air hostess start serving some water to passengers. At some point a ladder was connected and the technical staff came on board.Again no announcement on whats happening.
Some staff came with ladder and being in the last row there is some sort of electrical plug point behind my seat. Power was drawn from that and they were doing some work again with the aircraftAir India knows how to make a bad scenario worse
After hours of waiting at about 9 the Captain announced we will be taken back to terminal and alternative means of transport arranged. I remember once when there was such an issue with Jet they transferred passengers directly from Aircraft to aircraft without getting into terminal and there by bypassing all the security check and requirements you need incase you enter the terminal not for Air India - our aim is to make it worse for you. We were led to transit and issued transit passes
We have to go through the security check again and the transit was understaffed. Air India took some steps to get more CISF officers to man but was very late for that. We were put can into the International terminal and were asked to sit for a while. After sometime a boarding gate was opened and we boarded VT-ANX. VT-ANX with the new flight number AI 933D was taking up to Cochin.
The fight took off around 9.55 AM. The food was served once the flight attained cruising altitude
One thing about Air India - I have never had a terrible food inflight. Always a nice meal is guaranteed.
The flight landed at around 12.30 P.M and disembarkation was smooth.
I am really a fan of Air India and on a usual uneventful flight I am happy with the service provided but in a crisis like this much of the customer experience get drowned at all the red tapism. I would have appreciated if more details were provided. The landing gear issue - I came to know from the news the next day.http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-new ... dg0lK.html
I would have been nice if we were informed what was happening and since there was a delay of almost 4 hours if some snack or refreshments or atleast even water was provided to customer. But I still love Air India - Its the only flight with IFE in domestic sector and a dreamliner in domestic is a big win so would take this flight again without any inhibition again.