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Jet Airways Mumbai-Dubai Inaugural flight Aug 2008.

 
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theflyingsikh
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Joined: 08 May 2010
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Location: United Kingdom

PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 8:33 am    Post subject: Jet Airways Mumbai-Dubai Inaugural flight Aug 2008. Reply with quote

Hello Everyone,

I know this report should have been uploaded longtime ago. But I just couldnt manage to do it all this while although I always intended to.
Also I apologize for the poor quality of some of the pictures.

So here I present my first trip report -

Jet Airways maiden flight Mumbai to Dubai.

Trip dates 23 Aug 2008 to 26 Aug 2008





Planning
Much before the launch of this service. Jet Airways started a massive advertisement campaign about its new service to Dubai. Everytime I saw the advert. My feeling to take this flight got even more stronger and finally I decided that I had to be on the first flight, soon began my homework to give shape to this dream . I call it a dream since I have never been on a maiden flight of any Airline. Jet has always been an airline of choice for me and since it was the first private airline from India to fly on the lucrative Bom-Dxb sector I felt it would be very exciting. Before Jet launched this route, it had been a monopoly for the national carriers AI and IC on this sector. One had to make do with the old AI 310's and the IC 320's. So this flight was something very special and it really turned out to be.

I logged onto www.jetairways.com and booked my ticket for my three day trip to dubai. (Kept it three days as been to Dxb many times already) After this I called the 9W contact centre and got a good seat blocked for myself.

Then came the day of the actual flight. I was so excited about the whole thing that I left for the airport almost 4 hrs before the flight where as the airport is only at a distance of 30-45 mins from where I live. Even my family chauffeur noticed my excitement and commented (bhaiya aaj aap bahot khush lag rahe hain,koi khaas baat hai -translated into English it means Brother, you seem very excited, is it something special? ). I replied nothing as such or else he would think I was crazy to be so happy to get on a maiden flight.
It was raining a lot that afternoon in Bombay but luckily there was no traffic on the way. I reached the airport exactly after 30 mins. Quickly pulled the bags out of my car placed them on the cart and after the initial passport and e-ticket check by the security personnel at the entry point I went into the terminal building. This was the time when mumbai airport was going through a lot of changes and the nicer things were already visible ie: new signage, FIDS, new check-in counters, in-line baggage screening etc.


At the Airport
As soon as I got close to the Jet Airways check in counter I noticed the counters were beautifully decorated with flowers. On the other side I noticed there was a ceremony taking place. A Hindu,Christian and Muslim priest were invited to pray before the airline launched this service. The prayer went on for sometime. I stood on one side and took a few photos.

Decorated Counters
Notice the media personnel in the far left corner (tripods etc..)


The ceremonial Pooja (Prayers) taking place


A Jet airways ground staff member approached me and asked where was I flying today. I replied Dubai, she asked if she could have a look at my ticket I showed her my e-ticket and she took a note of my name on a piece of paper. I enquired why was she doing this and she replied that they wanted one passenger from each class both Premiere and Economy to be a part of a small ceremony which will take place at the check-in area before they start check-in for other passengers and since I was the first passenger she saw who was traveling Premiere did I mind being a part of it and my answer my ofc Why not !!! She then, asked me to wait for sometime and not go far away as they would start with the ceremony within a few mins.

The area was already filled with news reporters from Indian news channels and press. The Chief Commercial Officer of Jet Airways Mr Sudhir Raghavan walked in with a clan of other officials from 9W. A few moments later the same girl came around and asked me to follow her, she lifted the temporary barricade to escorted me to the Premiere check in desk.

It was now when the real fun started as soon as we entered the barricaded area Mr Raghavan walked a few steps towards me Welcomed me by saying that he was delighted to have me as a first passenger to check in for their maiden flight to Dubai today. By now all the media present there was taking photos of both of us lol ( honestly this was exciting but I felt shy as well) He stood by me at the check-in counter while the agent printed my boarding card he then handed over the boarding card followed by a huge bouquet of flowers to me (we had to do a little kodak moment here) Wished me a pleasant flight and moved onto the economy class check in area to do the same with A passenger traveling in economy class

Before he left he asked one of the ground agents to look after me and I must tell you the pampering was about to start now. The ground agent then informed that she would personally escort me to the lounge and quickly called in a porter to carry my hand baggage and the flower bouquet .I was like, Not Bad!.

Then we went through immigration and security check which did not take very long as there were no queues at this time of the evening. I must mention right from the check in counter to the lounge and from the lounge to the aircraft I saw a lot of turning heads around to see Who I was? (and I was feeling so shy shy shy).

We then entered the lounge. I took a seat and the GSA (guest service agent) informed me, she had to leave and A colleague of her would come to the lounge before boarding starts along with the porter and they will escort me to the aircraft. I was like wow. Soon the lounge started filling up with other passengers . The lounge they used then was a very basic make shift types with a small selection of evening snacks and drinks the other lounges in the airport were either closed or going through renovations during this period. The lounge attendant came around and I ordered for a soft drink and chicken tikka off the menu. After this I checked my e-mails, made a few phone calls and time went by.

Soon it was time to board and I saw this beautiful lady walking towards me and informed that boarding had now started would I like to proceed, I replied yes. She then asked the porter to carry my cabin bag and the flowers to the aircraft.


On Board


When we entered the aircraft the head of Public Relations for Jet Airways was right besides the door having a chat with the cabin crew. The lady who was escorting me then introduced the head of P.R to me.I had a short conversation with two ladies and then the cabin crew took. I was escorted to my seat. By this time the cabin crew thought I was some V.I.P or C.I.P and they started paying extra attention towards me. (sometimes too much attention is not nice and in this situation I would feel shy to ask for a second helping of dessert Razz ).

The flower bouquet that was handed over to me at check-in.


Slowly the cabin got completely full, upon enquiring cabin crew informed me that the flight was 100% full in both the classes this evening.

The aircraft was a very new A330-200 with the herringbone seating configuration.The premiere section on board the A 330-200 in the 9w fleet is divided into two sections. I had a seat in the front section, seats are 3 abreast and the row in which I was seated, provided more privacy as there is no seat on the opposite side. The entire aisle has a divider running through the length of the cabin. This was a prefect seat for me and I could take click as many photos. Without my neighbor looking at me in suspicion.



Cabin crew came around with hot/cold towels, pre take off drinks which was oj, coconut water, apple juice,H20. I settled for a glass of plain water. They offered the menus both beverage and dinner and enquired what would I like to drink post take off. I ordered an OJ.

The cabin doors were closed, push back started shortly and the usual in-flight announcement and safety video was played. We were now ready to depart. After a short taxi we lined onto main runway and the powerful engines of this A330 came to life A long roll and we glided into the skies of Mumbai.

Take off Video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RdPExJ97uIM


Service
Menus were distributed pre-take off





A few minutes later the seat belt signs were turned off and cabin crew was released for service. The crew came over to take the dinner and drink's order. I chose the Soup as the 1st course an non-vegetarian Indian selection as main and nothing to drink along to which the FA said Mr A**** on this special occasion we are serving a Premium Champagne (I think it was Dom Perignon) do you mind trying it. I just could not say no to this charming attendant Razz .

Food options this evening


A minute later another FA came with my OJ and a small bowl of salad which was decorated with a nicely cut piece of poppadum and some dressing inside the bowl.


As soon pax had finished their post take off drinks. The crew came to dress the table for the meal service.


Soup was served piping hot (I usually have issues with soup on 9w as its never served real hot which I do not like) they bought a bread basket and I chose my all time favourite Garlic bread which is always delicious in Jet's J class.


The Bubbly



1st course was cleared and the cabin crew started bringing pre-plated meals to each passenger. The food was presented very well (Wht do you guys think? )

Well it tasted good. Now thats what I think Very Happy I thoroughly enjoyed the meal,

Later on. The dessert cart was bought to each passenger. It had a selection of fresh fruits ,Dessert wine, Ras Malai ( cottage cheese dumplings soaked in saffron flavored milk and garnished with nuts) and Fruit Savarin .


Dessert Wine being offered


I chose the Ras Malai it was perfectly cold and sweet enough to my liking.

After this the crew asked If i would like to have some tea/cofee to which I politely declined as I was too full by now. The service was very well planned and the FA's were in complete sync with each other. Which, I do not see often on 9w. May be the crew was oldest of the lot or were given special instructions for this flight.

The mandatory visit to the restroom[/b]
Premium Bvlgari Toiletries- The Green Tea Collection, Smells Divine.


[b]During Flight

It was time now to play with the seat and the AVOD.


The 15 inch screen was huge, IFE had a good selection of movies, documentaries, music etc..


Watching the movie Pinjar. A film about Hindu-Muslim problems during the time around the partition of India. The film is based on a Punjabi novel by the same name, written by Amrita Pritam


And one could not complain about the sound quality of the noise cancellation headsets.





Seat

Ottoman/Leg Rest


Seat Controls


The seat itself was very comfortable in the sitting and the fully reclined position.I wasn't really impressed with the massage function its wasn't very powerful.




A few minutes later the crew came around to distribute a box of chocolates to each passenger. the box had a small note about todays inaugural service pasted on the top.


Cabin Shot


Mood lighting was turned onn. Personally I'm not a fan of mood lighting. It makes me feel like I'm at a club in Amsterdam rather than a airplane.



The Captain came on the P.A system and informed that we were now flying over the city of muscat and would shortly start our descend into Dubai. The cabin crew then prepared for landing.

Screen stowed before landing


Jacket returned


Dubai was now hazily visible at a distance and it wasn't very long before we flying over the glitzy lights of Dxb and made a smooth landing at Dubai International Airport.

Landing video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Ddx6wwKg0s

The taxi was painfully long and the aircraft was parked at a jetway. When the aircraft came to a halt It was given a water salute.( I deleted the water salute video by mistake) Also I could see at a distance lot of passengers clicking pictures of the arriving aircraft from the departure lounge.

This wonderful flight had come to an end


Upon disembarking the aircraft Jet Airways ground personnel were present at the aircraft door to Welcome the passengers and presented A yellow colored rose to each passenger. I noticed the passengers in Y were presented with a small box of Taj chocolates during the flight as a Welcome gift.

By now I was fearing the queues at Dubai passport controls which are always very long (9w did not give any fast track cards this evening) but today it took less time than usual. The arrivals hall was packed like crazy. Luckily,the baggage was on the carousel when I got thr.

Dubai
On Exit the Dubai heat slapped my face and I was like - Welcome To Dubai. The hotel chauffeur drive was waiting and I was on my way, settled in my room and called it a night.
The next 3 days, were very busy with shopping, eating loads of Shawarma and doing the usual rounds of Jumeirah Beach, Mall Of Dubai, Meeting up friends etc... in the extremely hot weather. When I had landed in Dubai the temperature was announced as 36 degrees and that was in the evening. I'm sure the day temperatures were even higher with extreme humidity. But It was a nice stay anyways.

Dubai Creek from the Abra (Taxi Boats)






Gurdwara- Sikh place of Worship in Dubai




Mall Of Emirates






Ski Dubai








Speeding past the iconic Burj Al Arab


A local supermarket chain- Guess owned by a Sindhi businessman


Return

I know the traffic in Dubai can be real bad during the evening hr's. So I left the hotel much in advance for my 21:45 hrs dept and by 19:45 I was at the airport.

Traffic


City Centre Shopping mall on my way to the Airport


Underpass



At the Airport
Check in took less than 3 mins the agent handed over my b.p and a invite to the DCA lounge upon enquiring he informed the flight had a very light load this evening. I proceeded through the immigration and security check and then into the Duty Free to oblige with the last minute orders from my family (Issey Miyake 125 ml pls Givenchy Amarige pls Black Label pls etc etc etc. (Arghhh! Family sometimes do my head in) The duty free area was crowded like they were giving out free stuff. Shopping finished.

Lounge
This was my first time at the DCA lounge during my previous travels to or via Dxb, I have used the EK and Marhaba lounge. The DCA lounge looked ok, not great and not bad. When I entered it was very crowded but within minutes it got empty. The selection of f&b in the lounge was very good. There was something for everyone if not elaborate like the EK lounges. I grabbed a coffee and a cookie as I was expecting a nice meal on board.







In the lounge I sat next to a elderly British couple flying Lhr to Per via Dxb and Bwn on Royal Brunei Airlines their aircraft was visible from the DCA lounge. The couple was traveling in Y and the airline gave them DCA lounge invites during their short transit of 1.15 hrs in Dxb and they were not frequent fliers. So I was like wow what a nice airline to extend lounge access to Y passengers. (has any one else experienced this?)

The Royal Brunei aircraft at a distance


A look at the FIDS and my flight was boarding. Walked towards the gate which I had already figured was not very far from the lounge. So I took a leisurely walk. As discussed earlier on other forums, Dubai airport is very crowded and there are always people lying / sitting on the floor. Not a very nice thing to see.


On Board
I was welcomed by a very friendly and young FA. I settled in my seat 1A . I love seat 1A's by the way lol. Another FA then bought a choice of drinks similar to the Bom-Dxb flt.
Flight time was announced as 2.45 mins and dinner was to be served. The cabin was prepared for departure and the safety demo was played.
Long taxi, A short roll and and we were soon heading towards Mumbai

Taxi Video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xJdtge5IV0M

Take off video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sl-ezi8EPTs

Air borne video
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uNgTUgwBLn4

As the aircracft got onto the cruising level the cabin crew got into action. The meal sequence was similar to my Bom-Dxb flt. Post take off drink, Soup, Main Course, Dessert. But this time the soup was a problem It wasn't hot and I bought this to the notice of the Chief purser who was passing by. He Apologized and offered to get my soup re-heated. The soup was now presented piping hot.

The main course was a delicious Prawn Dish prepared in a arabic way. I do not know how authentic the arabic claim was. But It was superb in taste.


The dessert looked good but was a big disappointment in taste. Some chocolate mousse preparation with a very gelatinous texture to it. I thought they used too much gelatine in the dessert as the hot weather of dubai would not let the preparation hold together as everything in Dxb was melting away including their Economy. (ha ha ha. pls dont mind my silly joke)


The cabin crew was very chatty and friendly. The service on this flight was highly personal I guess due to the light loads. One of the F.A even recognized me from a previous flight a few days ago.I was like you got a good memory. After the meal service the cabin lights were dimmed and the discotheque lights (I mean mood light's..lol) were turned onn. Those who wanted to sleep were handed over blankets.

I decided to have a stroll through the aircraft
Premiere Cabin after the meal service




When I entered the Y cabin I was very surprised to see that it was almost empty. This reminded me of my short conversation with the check-in agent this evening.




I returned to my seat and asked the FA to get me a cup of coffee. This time they made sure It was served hot. The coffee was really nice. Rest of the flight was uneventful and we made a smooth landing into Mumbai at 02:15 am. The aircraft was parked onto the jetway.


Bombay Airport
There were no queues at passport control as this was past the hour's when most of the flights from Europe arrive and this area is a complete madness. Luggage was delivered promptly and I was in the cab within 30 mins of touchdown.

A few days later Jet Airways e-mailed me the pictures (of myself) they took during the ceremony at Mumbai airport. This was a very nice gesture by 9W.


Conclusion

A top rated experience! Jet Airways delivered everything they had promised and also exceeded my expectations in certain places.
No doubt they are the carrier of choice for many including myself.

My Likes:
The ceremony, The aircraft , The food, The Service and The cabin crew.


My Dislikes:
The DCA lounge,The Dessert on the return flight and The biggest let down was that 9W did not provide the passengers a Flight Certificate on the inaugural service. Something that A person like me would have cherished all my life.

Note:- Jet Airways no more uses the A330 on the Bom-Dxb sector. A while ago they replaced the once a day A330 service with a double daily service using the next generation 737-800 series offering passengers more flexibility and convenience. I'm pretty certain that the level of service offered on the 737's will be of a very good standard.

This brings and end to my 3 day trip to Dubai.I always dreamt of flying onboard an Inaugural flight and I was able to fulfill this dream of mine.

I hope you enjoyed reading my first trip report. Please feel free to provide your feedback and comments. It would all be highly appreciated.
Thank you for your time.
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Last edited by theflyingsikh on Tue Aug 30, 2011 1:21 am; edited 5 times in total
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Nimish
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

All I can say is wow! What a magnificent TR - even better that it's on an inaugural sector...

Keep posting my friend - we need more content, and nothing like first hand content Smile.
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sumantra
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 29, 2011 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My, my - words cannot describe what we have missed all this while!
A very nice trip report: an exotic first flight, with very vivid descriptions, and nice photographs and videos to go with it. I have never read an inaugural flight description that has been so lucid in its content. The overall service on the outbound sector looks very nice - the yummy food almost seems to emanate aromas. Thanks for the nice capsule on Dubai as well. Let me sign off in the tone of my first line: yes, please do take time off to write your experiences, since your brief description has left many of us really looking forward to your reports. This is a very popular forum on AI.net, and I am sure I am not alone in stating the above.
Cheers, Sumantra.
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stealthpilot
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2011 3:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No more A330 to DXB, too bad Smile
Nice TR ....
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theflyingsikh
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 3:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hay Nimish,Sumantra and Stealthpilot,

Thanks a lot for all your compliments.

There will be more stuff coming your way.

All I may need is another kick. I Guess Sumantra is good at it.. Laughing Laughing Laughing lol
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justbala
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 3:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Excellent TR and gr8 pics!!

This is one sector where I have managed to snag an upgrade 2 out of 3 times while travelling in Y and being a JP silver/gold member!! Too bad they had to change it to double daily 737 ops.

I have had a chance to sample all 3 9W flights out of BOM to DXB and the loads have been consistently good. Encountered people with bizzare connections!! Smile Remember this one Merchant Navy officer, who was connecting to a Kish Airlines flight to Kish Island at DXB and then a chopper ride to his ship somewhere in the persian gulf!! Smile
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GuyFromBOM
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2011 8:00 am    Post subject: Re: Jet Airways Mumbai-Dubai Inaugural flight Aug 2008. Reply with quote

@theflyingsikh: Superb TR with great pics, especially of DXB.

theflyingsikh wrote:
A local supermarket chain- Guess owned by a Sindhi businessman
Yes T. Choitram & Sons is owned by a Sindhi Family. Same is the case with Al Maya Lals Group (including Lamcy Plaza).

theflyingsikh wrote:
My Dislikes: The DCA lounge
Is the DCA operated by the Emirates Catering? It seems to be much spacious than the Marhaba Lounge (operated by Emirates Catering), serving almost every airline from T1. Although the Veg. Lasagne at Marhaba is drooooling delicious.

I have fond memories of Gurdwara & Abra as I spent my adolescent stage in Meena Bazaar, Bur Dubai. On my last visit, I travelled extensively on the Metro which is a nice change from the traffic snarls. BTW, have you been to Sindh-Punjab Restaurant in Bur-Dubai? Must try..! Very Happy

Thanks for sharing..!
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sri_bom
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A very nice TR and you were lucky that you managed to fly on the inaugural flight. I do understand when you say you were blushing with all the attention but what the heck we donít get photographed everyday do we?

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PAL@YWG
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2011 10:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A really nice TR with blow-by-blow account of things that are associated only with an inaugural flight! Nice pictures too...keep it up!
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Spiderguy252
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 03, 2011 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great report, thanks for sharing. Nice pics too. Smile
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theflyingsikh
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 3:15 am    Post subject: Thank You! Reply with quote

Hay,

justbala, GuyFromBOM, sri_bom, PAL@YWG and Spiderguy252

Thanks a lot for taking out time to read my trip report and for all your messages.
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theflyingsikh
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 17, 2011 3:26 am    Post subject: Re: Jet Airways Mumbai-Dubai Inaugural flight Aug 2008. Reply with quote

GuyFromBOM wrote:
@theflyingsikh: Superb TR with great pics, especially of DXB.

theflyingsikh wrote:
A local supermarket chain- Guess owned by a Sindhi businessman
Yes T. Choitram & Sons is owned by a Sindhi Family. Same is the case with Al Maya Lals Group (including Lamcy Plaza).

theflyingsikh wrote:
My Dislikes: The DCA lounge
Is the DCA operated by the Emirates Catering? It seems to be much spacious than the Marhaba Lounge (operated by Emirates Catering), serving almost every airline from T1. Although the Veg. Lasagne at Marhaba is drooooling delicious.

I have fond memories of Gurdwara & Abra as I spent my adolescent stage in Meena Bazaar, Bur Dubai. On my last visit, I travelled extensively on the Metro which is a nice change from the traffic snarls. BTW, have you been to Sindh-Punjab Restaurant in Bur-Dubai? Must try..! Very Happy

Thanks for sharing..!



Hello GuyFromBOM,

I'm not very sure about who caters for the DCA lounge. If someone here knows about it, then it's some information for me too.

Yes, the food at Marhaba Lounge is very good. I dont remember eating Lasagne but the Prawn Biryani is super. I guess the Chefs from Kerala churn out some really nice dishes.

Yes I've been to Sind Punjab and food is really good.
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