Tier Point Run to Helsinki in Mar 2020

My regular TP run to Helsinki over two weekends. Just before lockdown started in the UK. Eerily quiet in Helsinki!

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A view of Heathrow T5 A view of Heathrow T5

Tier Point Run to Inverness in Nov 2022: Day 1 – London (LHR) to Inverness (INV)

By Nige on Sat 05 Nov 2022 at 12:00
Story: Tier Point Run to Inverness in Nov 2022
Tags: INV | Inverness | LHR | London | Trips

I had set the alarm for 4am, but I knew full well I would be awake before then. As expected I was up about 15 mins before the alarm. I managed to sneak out of the bedroom without waking Vick and I remembered to turn my alarm clock off!

I spent some time downstairs with Chutney on my lap. He’s not been his normal self for a week or so since he had his bravecto treatment for worms/fleas – it doesn’t affect Mango at all, but it always hits Chutney to some extent. This time was worse than we have seen before, but he was still interested in a cuddle on my lap before I headed off to Heathrow.

My Tesla route to Heathrow My Tesla route to Heathrow
My Tesla route to Heathrow

It was a bit chilly this morning – about 7 deg c. It’s been warmer recently than you’d expect in Oct/Nov; I assume as a result of global warming. The temp today was nice and fresh for the start of a short TP run.

Bobby Tesla 2 had the bonus of a new rear tyre yesterday following a puncture I picked up on a very short trip out to the local Coop for chocolate on Tue evening. I am always a little nervous about driving after having new tyres fitted – I am sure you used to have to “wear them in”, but fitters nowadays say you don’t need to treat them carefully for a short period of time. They are just “ready to go”.

Leaving at 5am, the roads were unsurprisingly quiet. I didn’t come across any kamikaze animals running across the road in front of me, so it was an easy drive to POD parking at Heathrow T5.

POD parking was packed, but I managed to find a spot not too far from Station A and I was pleased to see that the PODs were working. So I considered that an added bonus!

In a POD on the way to Heathrow T5 In a POD on the way to Heathrow T5
In a POD on the way to Heathrow T5

In to T5 and the BA terminal was very busy – a lot busier than I had seen it recently. There was a fairly long queue for security at The First Wing (TFW) – both scanners were in use and I ended up chosing the faster queue (for a change). Through in about 5 mins is nothing to complain about.

The view of a busy Heathrow T5 at 6am The view of a busy Heathrow T5 at 6am
The view of a busy Heathrow T5 at 6am

The First Lounge wasn’t too busy to be fair; buffet breakfast is back on, but I decided to head through to the CCR and went straight into formal breakfast, which is always pretty decent. Today was no exception.

Another fab Big Breakfast in the BA CCR at Heathrow T5 Another fab Big Breakfast in the BA CCR at Heathrow T5
Another fab Big Breakfast in the BA CCR at Heathrow T5

I normally complain about mushrooms being boiled and bland. However, today they were very well seasoned. In fact, to be honest, the chef had been too liberal with the salt. I can’t remember the last time I complained about mushrooms being too well seasoned! However, overall an excellent start to the day!

Wandered around T5 and it was obviously a busy day for people getting away.

Flight: BA1468 Equip: A320
Sched Depart: 09:20 Actual: 09:29
Sched Arrival: 11:05 Actual: 11:10
Takeoff: 09:58 Landing: 11:06

The flight up to Inverness left from Gate A19 so I walked briskly to Starbucks about 45 mins before departure time so I would have my coffee in hand as I walked onto the aircraft. That is a lovely feeling.

Come on guys - you need to align those pictures! Come on guys - you need to align those pictures!
Come on guys - you need to align those pictures!

Starbucks was pretty busy; both counters in operation and it took a good 15 mins for me to order and collect my coffee before heading down to the gate.

I expected boarding to have started by the time I got there but alas no; not even a priority boarding queue had been started. We didn’t start to board until 20 mins before departure so BA weren’t expecting to push back on time.

Once I was onboard into seat 01F, I settled down and watched everyone else board. We finally pushed back about 5 mins later than planned but it took us a further 35 mins before we were on the runway.

It was a very murky, overcast day with some light rain in the air so there wasn’t much to look at after take off, until we were well above the clouds. There’s always something magical about appearing above the clouds and from the murky ground, beautiful blue sky appears.

My second breakfast of the day comprised another full English, a pastry and a yoghurt. I didn’t eat much of it, but based on reports recently about the lack of catering on BA short haul flights, we may have been lucky to be offered anything.

Another breakfast on board the BA flight up to Inverness Another breakfast on board the BA flight up to Inverness
Another breakfast on board the BA flight up to Inverness

The crew were very attentive to the 10 rows or so of Club Europe. The CSL was a very well spoken Aussie with a hint of down under that gave her roots away. When I was leaving the aircraft I laughed with her about doing a B2B for TPs. She suggested Jersey may be a bit closer, but I assured her I’d have no problem getting back through security in good time to re-board.

Amazing views on final approach into Inverness Amazing views on final approach into Inverness
Amazing views on final approach into Inverness

We arrived about on time into a chilly, wet and fairly windy Inverness. Once across the tarmac and passed the Immigration sign (which always amuses me), I was soon through the baggage reclaim area and back into the security queue.

Follow the whole story here: Tier Point Run to Inverness in Nov 2022

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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!

View all posts by Nige   |   Website

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