I must admit I have not been flying Jet Airways on my domestic routings of late. I have heaps of trip reports to write, but essentially, when I went by for my little holiday to the Park Hyatt Goa in June, I had a no air-conditioner flight on Goa to Mumbai.
I decided I when I got back to be treading away from them for a while, but I already had reservations with them for this November trip so I thought I’d brave it out this one time then. Jet Airways, on the other hand, seemed to have other plans for me. I was travelling my regular BOM-DEL segment, something I do a zillion times. I’d asked for an upgrade (against a voucher) from economy to business, but my request was not accepted. You could read my thoughts about their recent upgrade policy here.
Anyways, I’d already checked in for my flight and I got 10D, the first row aisle behind the curtain. I arrived at the airport, wanting to check in my bags after a full night of keeping awake due to all the coffee, and hop on to the plane and go to sleep.
Things were going pretty slow at the business class check-in counter, which is where I was waiting to check-in. After all, it was the festive season, and everyone, including non-frequent travellers were going to be on a plane this time around.
Mumbai Airport Terminal 1B Landside
Terminal 1C Check-in Counter
I had a long chat with the check-in agent about the possibility to upgrade. There were seats available, economy was overbooked, and there was no reason I could not get an op-up, however I was indeed willing to use a voucher they’d given me for the upgrade. I was initially told it was not going to be possible, but they’d try. I was told I was going to be given my Y boarding pass for the time being.
I was approached by the manager in charge of the station, and she made sure my bags were tagged priority. She took down the details of the voucher I wanted to use, and wanted to walk me to the lounge. However, since there was tons of travellers today, I did not want her off the desk for long to assist other passengers, and I thanked her and told her I’d find my way.
Security check was a breeze since I was flying early in the day, and then I had nothing to do for a while. My current tier with Jet Airways does not get lounge access under their new policy, and since I hold the MasterCard version of the Citibank PremierMiles card, and other cards, I did not have a Visa Signature to access the Mumbai Carnations Lounge at the terminal. You can however read about this contract lounge here and here.
I was going to wait it out in the food court, and since I had not eaten all night, I was kind of, umm, hungry. I walked about, chose a light snack, and got it. That it turned out to be utterly tasteless is an understatement however. I proceeded to wait at the gate after.
A while later, my plane turned up, which flew in from Delhi. It was going to be a Jet Airways 737-900, VT-JGC, with a plane wrap from GE on top. I got a nice picture from the gate.
Boarding begun a little after the time printed on the boarding pass, and they were running a full flight, so the queues were long. My upgrade was a yes-no situation now. Jet Airways was presented with a voucher, and they’d eventually had me sitting in the front after a gate upgrade.
The flight, like I mentioned, was full. Like I wrote a few days back, the last minute fares were as high as Rs. 30,000 to 40,000 Rs. for a one-way economy ticket. But, with a 737-900 flying the route, there was space for 28 business class seats, and there were some crew flying (or flying back…) to Delhi in the forward cabin as well.
Mumbai(BOM) – Delhi (DEL)
Saturday, November 10 2012
Distance flown: 708 miles
Aircraft: Boeing 737-900, VT-JGC
Seat: 3D (Premiere, Business Class)
Meal Service: Breakfast
The leg space was good as always.
The usual pre-flight sequence was followed to perfection, and shortly after I was seated, I was presented with a pre-flight beverage, and then a cold towel. I went with the sweet lime juice.
Before take off, we were also presented with the breakfast menu for our flight. For those of you interested, here is the menu for the day.
I went with the Omelette and some breads along. We were on time for departure, and went all the way to the other end of the terminal for getting on to the main runway. Shortly after departure, the table was set for breakfast in the impeccable Jet Airways style I used to like, and breakfast was served.
The cabin crew did frequent rounds of the cabin with a bread basket, and I went with a croissant and some jam to start off. Later on, I also went with a muffin to go along with my coffee. I must say, I’ve noticed the phases of attentiveness in Jet Airways, and this crew was marvellous because they had attention to detail on this flight.
There was no in-flight entertainment installed on this plane, but I had a chatty seatmate and we discussed everything from politics to the state of the economy, right uptil we commenced descent. Very different from my original plan of catching a lot of sleep on the plane.
We landed into Delhi on time, and as soon as we got into the gate, there was a meet and greet service organised. Again, I declined, since I won’t want a porter carrying my bag around, I could do it myself, no? At Delhi, the bags arrived in a while, with the Priority tag not really helping, and bags arrived in a random order with the priority tagged bags coming mixed with the non-priority ones. Not that I had a problem, because I was anyways going to wait for 30 minutes at the airport while my brother arrived on another flight.
Phew, I am glad that Jet Airways chose to go back to its former self and I guess now I need to fly them more often again? We’ll see how the flight back goes later this week.
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