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Anonymous24 May 2016
I travelled on BA8735 from Frankfurt Terminal 2 to London City Airport in May 2016 in economy class. This was a connecting flight from Tokyo Narita, which I have reviewed separately. The scheduled departure time of the flight was 18:05.
As soon as I left my JAL flight I made my way straight to the Sakura Lounge and was told that shower room 2 was immediately available. The shower room is small but had plenty of shower gel/shampoo and a large yellow bath towel and bath mat were provided in a plastic packet. The shower was really refreshing after a long flight although there was no real seating and did I find it a little cramped to accommodate my luggage and get changed in.
After returning the key to the shower room, I made my way into the main ounce area. In terms of hot food there was some asparagus soup, meat balls and German sausages. There was also some sandwiches and plenty of salad items. I didn't try any of the alcohol but there was a decent selection of German beers in the fridge, wines and spirits. After some salad I tried some of the jelly fruit cake with peppermint tea which I enjoyed. As I have visited the JAL lounge several times recently, I decided to take a slow walk to the Cathay Pacific lounge – however, it was closed and a sign said that it would reopen from 6am the following morning.
An announcement was made at 17:20 to say that the LCY flight was ready for boarding and a further announcement was made at just before 17:30. Security is almost directly opposite the lounge. I wouldn't normally comment on security but I did find it both excessive and rude on this occasion – in particular, the person who emptied one of my bags, opened a gift I'd brought and made no attempt to help put any of it back….!
Departure was from Gate D7 which required us to be bused to the aircraft. There was a great view of the airfield and we passed next to the JAL 777 I'd arrived on as well as a Korean Air 747-800 at the next gate. The aircraft was already quite full when we arrived and there was the usual shortage of overhead baggage space….! That said, I did manage to find space for everything. I was sitting in seat 12A, which is an exit row seat. The captain made a short pre-departure announcement saying that the taxi would take 10 minutes and there would be a flight time of 1 hour and 15 minutes. A flight attendant gave a very clear and extensive briefing on the fact that we were sitting in an emergency exit row and how we might be asked to assist in an emergency, which doesn't always happen (and certainly not to that extent).
A trolley service came down at around 18:35 and I was offered a choice of either: (i) cous cous and falafel salad; (ii) potato and chicken salad; or (iii) a selection of crisps and popcorn. I opted for the cous cous salad which came with a small packet of vinaigrette dressing – it was passable but not much more. Drinks were offered from a separate cart about 10 minutes later. The crew seemed quite stretched and stressed but I was made a Bloody Mary and was given some water. To my surprise, I enjoyed the salad – it was small but tasty. The rest of the flight was uneventful and I just read.
Our approach to London was delayed, apparently due to a change in wind direction around LCY. The delay added about 20 minutes to the flight time. It was beautiful evening and there was great views over the coastline, Thames and London as compensation. Landing was finally at 18:53. It seemed to take an age to be finally let off the aircraft, although thankfully there was a short queue for immigration and my luggage arrived almost straightaway on carousel 1 with the priority tag intact.
Overall, this experience was fine but not Frankfurt Airport's finest hour. I'd probably avoid transiting through FRA in the future if possible but, in fairness, I've also had mixed experiences at Amsterdam and Madrid Barajas in the last few months. This was a decent but unremarkable BA flight. That said, it was great to arrive at LCY (which is close to where I live) and I will certainly try to do so again in the future if the price and schedule is right.24 May 2016