It's always great when a journey starts well. But this didn't ! Michael and I arrived at Frankfurt Airport about 2.5 hours before departure time. We had to wait for about 30 minutes before we could check-in as all check in employees were very slow with the check-in that day.
As we received our boarding passes we saw that they reseated us from rows 27 and 28 to rows 40 and 41. We booked seats behind each other so we could film separately. When we told the check-in assistent she thought we wanted to sit next to each other, even after our third try to explain to her we wanted to sit behind each other AND at our preselected seats she had no idea. So we asked her why we got new seats and she told us because a family had to sit together and there was nothing to do about. Later we went to a Gate assistent and a flight attendent to get our seats back but nobody was responsible for this task.
Very angry we sat down at our new rows.
Michael and I booked the flights in may (two Airbus A350 flights, a brand new Boeing 777-300ER and a Boeing 787-8), two weeks later Qatar changed the flights to two very old Boeing 777-300ER and two outdated Boeing 787-8... You may understand that we weren't satisfied about it and the fact that this 777-300ER (A7-BAO) had an old Economy class didn't made us happy at all.
A7-BAO was delivered to Qatar Airways in december 2008, at least Qatari installed a new WIFI service for that airplane so we could surf for one hour free.
After boarding and engine start we taxied to runway 18 for a wonderful "heavy heavy" takeoff and turned left for a Dinkelsbuhl departure routing.
Shortly after takeoff we received our menues and a few minutes later our meal. I went for Thai Curry which tasted really good.
After my meal I started with my first movie for this trip: Kingsman - The secret service and right after it ended I started the second movie.
Although the Economy layout was old I really enjoyed this inflight entertainment. Qatar offers a huge variety of movies, TV shows and music (and yes, this time I was able to enjoy some Hans Zimmer music). I also liked the inflight map.
Michael and I ordered some beer and whiskey to celebrate the start of our Phuket trip...and to have some alcohol of course :D
When I opened my sun shade we were cruising somewhere over Iraq and a few minutes later we saw Kuwait and the northern coast of the persian gulf.
As our captain announced the remaining flight time would be about 30 minutes, we started our descent into Doha. With a sharp right-left turn we turned onto final approach for runway 16R. The passengers had a wonderful view of Doha and "the Pearl-Qatar". The sun already started to set as we turned of the runway to taxi to our gate.
This first flight was pretty nice in the end although it wasn't an A350-900....
First things first: I love Hamad International !
It is such a huge and majestic airport and I was a bit sad that we only had one hour layover time before we had to go to gate B10 where our Dreamliner to Phuket already waited.
For this evening, A7-BDB stood at the apron and as we went to the waiting area of B10, the last catering truck drove away.
"Bravo-Delta-Bravo" is one of the newest Dreamliner in Qatar's young fleet, it was delivered in april 2016. Although it is a new airplane it still has an older economy class. As good as the IFE screen is, I didn't enjoy the "IFE box". That's a box, where the computer for the screen is installed.
Qatar did place them under the seat and this box is so big that you can't place your feet next to them. Qatar's legroom was okay but the fact that you cant place your feet anywhere is a huge disadvantage.
Our captain welcomed us onboard and shortly after the door was closed we started our pushback procedure and lit up 2 General Electric GEnX-1B-70 with one of my favourite engine sounds. Next to us Qatar's A350 flight to Singapore pushed back and as it started it's Rolls Royce engines, we started taxiing to runway 16L.
As on QR 70 we received our menues right after takeoff and as on the last flight I went for a Thai Curry.
This time it was a red one but basically it tasted the same as on the flight to DOH. On both meals there was a little chili placed on top. I ate the first one without any problems so I thought this chili was the same...but I wasn't. I drank my beer and all of my water but my mouth still hurt like fire. I had to order another beer and some water to neutralize the pungency.
After that I took a look into the movie selection and I decided to watch Moana but after 45 minutes I started getting really tired so I took my blanket and my pillow to sleep a bit.
It didn't work well but it was good to rest a bit. Somewhere over the indian ocean I woke up again to listen to some music and drink a bit.
About 90 minutes before landing a coffee smell spread in the cabin and a few minutes later the mood lighting was turned on. I couldn't eat anything but I ordered a cup of black tea. Since last years American flight I drink black tea on every flight.
As it got brighter and brighter outside I looked outside to see my first glimpse of asia ever. I really liked what I saw.
The seatbelt signs were turned on as we descened through two layers of clouds and shortly after that we had an amazing view of the western coast of Thailand.
Phuket airport reported good weather with winds from the west so unfortunately we had to land on runway 27 instead of 09.
After two right hand turns we touched down in Thailand and were welcomed not only by a big sign but also by our purser.
Michael and I were really tired (6 hours of time shift) as we went off the airplane to start an amazing vacation.