Weekend to London in Feb 2016

We enjoy heading down to London to sort out Russian visas in support of our trip to St Petersburg.

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A snackette enjoyed in the BA Lounge at Heathrow T3
A snackette enjoyed in the BA Lounge at Heathrow T3
A snackette enjoyed in the BA Lounge at Heathrow T3
A snackette enjoyed in the BA Lounge at Heathrow T3

Tier Point Run to Los Angeles in May 2024: Day 1 – London Heathrow (LHR) to Budapest (BUD)

By Nige on Tue 14 May 2024 at 22:49
Type: Post
Story: Tier Point Run to Los Angeles in May 2024
Tags: BUD | Budapest | LHR | London Heathrow | Trips

It eventually took two hours from leaving home to walking into the BA Lounge at Heathrow T3. The drive itself took the normal hour. Waiting for the Hoppa bus and the journey to Heathrow T5 took another 25 mins, then waiting for a tube to T3 and walking to T3 added another 25 mins or so.

A beautiful piece of art created by Collette Miller
A beautiful piece of art created by Collette Miller
A beautiful piece of art created by Collette Miller
A beautiful piece of art created by Collette Miller

Fasttrack Security at T3 was quick; T3 wasn’t busy at all. So throw in another 10 mins and I was showing my boarding pass to the BA Lounge Dragon two hours after leaving home. Seems a long time ago already!

I had to ask for an invite to First Dining and I used that invitation almost immediately. I was famished, having only had fruit around lunchtime.

The First Dining menu didn’t inspire me that much, to be honest, but I decided to go for the onion pie with a watercress sauce and a long roasted carrot, which was very nice, although relatively small!

Perhaps that was a good thing!

Not often you see an IranAir aircraft at Heathrow!
Not often you see an IranAir aircraft at Heathrow!
Not often you see an IranAir aircraft at Heathrow!
Not often you see an IranAir aircraft at Heathrow!

I asked for some chips on the side, which went down nicely along with some tomato ketchup.

Rich in lycopene (as I understand it), so they were definitely on the healthy side!

Flight: BA0870 Equip: A320
Sched Depart: 21:25 Actual: 21:26
Sched Arrival: 00:55 Actual: 00:52
Takeoff: 21:46 Landing: 00:48

I did some walking around the terminal. There was nothing too exciting to report, though. It’s good to flex my right foot where I have a painful heel.

The view of the apron at T3 from seat 01A on board my BA flight to Budapest
The view of the apron at T3 from seat 01A on board my BA flight to Budapest
The view of the apron at T3 from seat 01A on board my BA flight to Budapest
The view of the apron at T3 from seat 01A on board my BA flight to Budapest

My flight to Budapest left from Gate 29, which was a decent walk from the lounge. The BA Lounge was almost empty when I left, and it was starting to get cold. The walk got my blood flowing again.

With it being a late flight, it seemed to be fairly quiet at the gate.

Boarding was the first in my experience where Group 0 passengers were invited to board at the same time as families, which, in my humble opinion, is how it should be done.

Consequently, I was first on, which is definitely the way things should be when I am flying!

A tasty cottage pie served on board the late night BA flight
A tasty cottage pie served on board the late night BA flight
A tasty cottage pie served on board the late night BA flight
A tasty cottage pie served on board the late night BA flight

There was also none of this pre-boarding if you need to check your bag nonsense. Best short-haul boarding experience for me for a long, long time.

Boarding started about 35 mins before departure, and we were fully boarded 10 mins before departure. BA definitely appeared to be pushing the “on time” concept. I was in my less preferred seat of 01A, but i had an empty seat next to me.

As it happens, I suspect the Heathrow effect had a small impact on BA’s attempt to get away on time. We didn’t push back until 10 mins late, although we were on the runway just 10 mins after that.

A menu was handed out to me, together with a personal warm welcome by the CSM, who managed to slather on the charm in the process.

A much nicer access to the Budapest airport hotel
A much nicer access to the Budapest airport hotel
A much nicer access to the Budapest airport hotel
A much nicer access to the Budapest airport hotel

I started off with nuts and a glass of champagne, in partnership with a glass of water.

I wanted to see what the food was like. After all, it tends to be one of my main focuses on these trips!

The cottage pie was very tasty. Even the starter was good, which was made up of chickpea, mozzarella, and tiny lettuce leaves in a sauce.

The sweet was a chocolate mousse, which was tremendous. Obviously, I just tasted these dishes a la Masterchef. It was much too late to indulge in a three course meal!

A much cleaner look across the new car park to the iBis airport hotel
A much cleaner look across the new car park to the iBis airport hotel
A much cleaner look across the new car park to the iBis airport hotel
A much cleaner look across the new car park to the iBis airport hotel

We arrived into Gate 34, which I am sure must have changed its gate number since I was last here, although I think I have had this debate with myself before!

I think it’s referred to as Gate B4 and B6 (the two gates at the end of the pier). Anyway, I can check in the morning can’t I!

We arrived a few mins early, and we were off relatively quickly, so it wasn’t long before I was walking into an empty passport control hall, where I had to walk the long way around a set of tensa barriers in order to reach the kiosk that I had just walked past!

My room at the iBis airport hotel in Budapest
My room at the iBis airport hotel in Budapest
My room at the iBis airport hotel in Budapest
My room at the iBis airport hotel in Budapest

The border official was a stern-looking woman who didn’t want to engage in any shape or form. I would have been scared to say anything, just on the off chance she took offence! Anyway, I was through in a few mins.

It was a nice 16 deg c when I hit the fresh air of Budapest and it was nice to see that all of the construction work at Budapest airport appears to have been completed. The access to the airport hotel was nicely finished off and it had a completely different feel to the place.

I walked over to the iBis and I had already checked in and received my mobile key, so I headed up to my (very) small room and enjoyed some sleep.


Follow the whole story here: Tier Point Run to Los Angeles in May 2024


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Author Bio: About Nige

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Nige is one of the co-founders of The Billingham Blog and works as a freelance management consultant. He loves to fly in his spare time!

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