Abandoning Prison Island

bam71

Active Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2010
Posts
539
Survived the 17hour trek from DRW - LHR, which arrived right on time at 0650.

The only noticeable difference was no printed menus in Y.

Breakfast served 2.5hrs from landing.

Cant complain about the food and inflight service.

I was surprised that there was no difference in arrival formalities at the UK border. Straight through the passport autogates and that was it. There was no re-verification of the Passenger Locator Form (verified in SYD during check - in).

Luggage was waiting for us, then it was a short walk to Short stay carpark 3, level 3 to wait for our Uber.

After an hour in horrendous London peak morning traffic, we're now in the breakfast room of the hotel (with a nice view of Hyde Park) waiting for the rooom to be ready.

@jcb12

Booking the D2 testing was straightforward. We went with Boots as there was one near our hotel, and they did D2 lateral flow as well as the PCR testing (required to return to Australia). GBP79.99 for PCR testing with 48hr turnaround. GBP21 for the D2 test (incl postage)(required to complete your PLF).

All in all, quite a smooth trip. Its really mind boggling that we can literally go almost anywhere in the world now, but not to QLD or WA.


View attachment 264624 View attachment 264625 View attachment 264626
RCN, can you explain the meal service on QF1 SYD DRW LHR? Dinner ex Sydney? Snack ex DRW? Looking at doing QF1 or 9 in December…..
 

Mrmaxwell

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May 18, 2007
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1,293
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Great info here. Leaving for UK in a few weeks and feel like things are changing very fast so who knows what the process is by the time you actually travel. Some of the hotels I have booked want up to GBP150 for a PCR test! It is the new minibar revenue! I'll find a Boots and be done with it...
 

MARTINE

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Apr 6, 2018
Posts
1,382
Great info here. Leaving for UK in a few weeks and feel like things are changing very fast so who knows what the process is by the time you actually travel. Some of the hotels I have booked want up to GBP150 for a PCR test! It is the new minibar revenue! I'll find a Boots and be done with it...
Agree
Realmy useful thread
GBP150 sounds dearer than Harley St
 

Economy_Gold

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Nov 11, 2010
Posts
80
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Virgin
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View attachment 264839
SYD - DRW PE Menu
Dinner service

View attachment 264841

DRW - LHR PE Menu
Supper, midlight snacks, breakfast

View attachment 264842

View attachment 264843

DRW - LHR J Menu
Supper, midflight snacks, breakfast
View attachment 264844

DRW - LHR J Wine list
Am I the only one that is annoyed that the Qantas J "wine list" actually does not list any wines? I recently flew Qatar Airways and every single flight had the printed J wine list with full descriptions of the six available wines (plus two champagnes). I really think a printed wine list can be expected from an international J flight.
 

N860CR

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2004
Posts
5,098
Am I the only one that is annoyed that the Qantas J "wine list" actually does not list any wines? I recently flew Qatar Airways and every single flight had the printed J wine list with full descriptions of the six available wines (plus two champagnes). I really think a printed wine list can be expected from an international J flight.
Haven’t flown Qantas for a while… but I think that’s normal?

Further update; I’m back in the UK. Ryanair we’re a little more pedantic leaving Portugal, however I believe I was the only non Brit/EU on the plane so they were a bit confused. Arrival in London (stansted this time) was equally simple. Straight through the e-gate.

Small holdup with my UK declaration. I booked a PCR test at Stansted for my return to Sydney. I figured I could use that as my “day 2” test, however the booking number was rejected on the UK Border form. I used the booking number from last weeks day 2 test and it went through ok.

PCR test was easy at the airport. Nurse was dressed like she was about to walk on the moon which seemed a little dramatic, but the actual test was far less…. well penetrative than the NSW Health efforts. She had a good laugh when I said I was here for 2 weeks but still can’t go to Brisbane.

Only concern is that I’ve had a persistent sore throat for a few days now. Fingers crossed! 😬
 

drron

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Joined
Jul 4, 2002
Posts
30,137
Am I the only one that is annoyed that the Qantas J "wine list" actually does not list any wines? I recently flew Qatar Airways and every single flight had the printed J wine list with full descriptions of the six available wines (plus two champagnes). I really think a printed wine list can be expected from an international J flight.
When did they last give a J wine list?One of my last flights on QF J was flying SYD-NRT so it had to be a while ago.No wine list so I asked the FA what wines they had on board.The answer - red or white.
 

N860CR

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2004
Posts
5,098
When did they last give a J wine list?One of my last flights on QF J was flying SYD-NRT so it had to be a while ago.No wine list so I asked the FA what wines they had on board.The answer - red or white.

Last time I flew Qantas J (good few years ago now), I did the same. I’d just flown about 8 sectors on Qatar. Flight attendant said “I don’t know. I’d have to go check”. She did, then returned and said “I assume you’ll want one then”.

I remembered then why I don’t fly Qantas.
 
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Mrmaxwell

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Am I the only one that is annoyed that the Qantas J "wine list" actually does not list any wines? I recently flew Qatar Airways and every single flight had the printed J wine list with full descriptions of the six available wines (plus two champagnes). I really think a printed wine list can be expected from an international J flight.

Especially if one is paying $14,000 return to the UK (current QF peak prices in J)
 

N860CR

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2004
Posts
5,098
So fears were unfounded, covid test came back negative.

Test was conduct at 17:30 and certificate was received at 09:00 the next morning. That was for Randox’s cheapest and slowest option (by midnight the day after testing). Certificate appears to tick all required boxes. Oddly, I’ve received two of them with two different references so I assume one is my actual test. Really couldn’t care less.

J looks to be full on QF2 on Thursday. Last night in London today and I’m staying at Heathrow Wednesday just to make it a little less painful early Thursday morning.

I’d booked the Novotel but, oddly, got an email today just saying “we are unable to accommodate you and have refunded your booking”. Expedia told me stiff so I annoyingly got stuck finding a coughpier hotel at a higher price. Almost suspect the $90 rate was a little low so they decided to flick me.
 

N860CR

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2004
Posts
5,098
I well and truly overestimated the time needed to checkin at LHR. Managaged to get from alarm going off at the hotel to first Bloody Mary in the lounge in 55 minutes.

Still have the little pre-checkin desk where my documents were quickly checked. Certainly not studied in detail like in Sydney. Everything accepted at face value. Actual checkin took a minute and fast track was nice and empty.

Only oneworld lounge is the BA Galleries which hasn’t changed much in a while. QR code for food, help yourself drinks.
 

N860CR

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2004
Posts
5,098
Interestingly, despite J being fully booked for weeks, there are about 4 empty seats in the forward cabin. Do wonder how many get caught out with the 72 hour covid test.
 

N860CR

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 30, 2004
Posts
5,098
To cap it off, home again relatively painlessly.

I remembered again why I don’t fly Qantas. They’re just not competitive anymore. The seat is fine. Meal service took about four hours from departure. 90 mins to get a drink in my hand. I giggled a little when the CSM did her little welcome chat just before descent saying “they’re telling us to do this late so we can just get on with the service”.

The long service was not the end of the world given it would be the only service until breakfast 2 hours before landing. No mid flight options other than tiny bags of chips and chocolates. These were sort of setup in the galley so I did grab one and was told to ask next time 🙄.

Woke up about 6 hours before landing in Darwin. Seemed most of the plane was awake. Not a single crew member came near me until breakfast appeared 4 hours later.

Transit in Darwin is easy. Quite well setup. No need to pass security again which makes it very pleasant.

I snoozed most of the way down to Sydney.

On arrival, NSW Health staff in full hazmat gear get on to play a federal government announcement. Given we’re all being released into the community, this seems like an overkill. Handed an A4 piece of paper that looked to be the same that has been handed out for 18 months (wash your hands etc etc). Other than that, normal entry to Australia. One customs officer was doing random vaccine checks at the e-gate (which I avoided) so it was straight to the exit for me and a quick waive out.

Interestingly, not a single mention of this supposed need to test during the first week.
 

Pushka

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Jan 26, 2011
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To cap it off, home again relatively painlessly.

I remembered again why I don’t fly Qantas. They’re just not competitive anymore. The seat is fine. Meal service took about four hours from departure. 90 mins to get a drink in my hand. I giggled a little when the CSM did her little welcome chat just before descent saying “they’re telling us to do this late so we can just get on with the service”.

The long service was not the end of the world given it would be the only service until breakfast 2 hours before landing. No mid flight options other than tiny bags of chips and chocolates. These were sort of setup in the galley so I did grab one and was told to ask next time 🙄.

Woke up about 6 hours before landing in Darwin. Seemed most of the plane was awake. Not a single crew member came near me until breakfast appeared 4 hours later.

Transit in Darwin is easy. Quite well setup. No need to pass security again which makes it very pleasant.

I snoozed most of the way down to Sydney.

On arrival, NSW Health staff in full hazmat gear get on to play a federal government announcement. Given we’re all being released into the community, this seems like an overkill. Handed an A4 piece of paper that looked to be the same that has been handed out for 18 months (wash your hands etc etc). Other than that, normal entry to Australia. One customs officer was doing random vaccine checks at the e-gate (which I avoided) so it was straight to the exit for me and a quick waive out.

Interestingly, not a single mention of this supposed need to test during the first week.
So transit through Darwin isn't an issue even though Darwin not 'open' as yet.
 

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