Pre-flight

I would say that this trip officially started on Thursday 23.07, a day before our departure. This day was spent busily packing and preparing a number of supplies and other items we were bringing for our grandparents. We also managed to pack a whole suitcase of old clothes to give to friends and relatives in Uganda.

The day next I woke up at 09:00 to do some last minute packing and to run some errands before our scheduled departure at 15:30. It was odd to have such a late departure time and, as a result, such a relaxed morning before the flight – I have become very used to Atlantic crossings where I am usually up very early on the morning of the departure to get things done. I left the house at 11:30 and took my car to the mechanic so that it could be fixed during the two week period when I would be away. My mom picked me up from the mechanic and quickly drove me passed the Millennium City shopping mall in Vienna so that I could get a couple of small presents for the people I would be meeting. The ride to the airport was extremely busy (early weekend traffic maybe?) and once we arrived, it took a long time for me to find parking in the “C” long-term parking lot.

At about 13:40 we were at the check-in desks, of which there were a total of eight: one for economy, one for internet check-in, one for business class/Skywards Silver & Gold and one first class counter. I was surprised at how few people there were at the counters, especially considering that this was two hours before departure – the standard time that most people start arriving for check-in. At this point, I was not convinced that EK would be able to fill up the 777-300ER – I would soon be proven wrong, however. The sheer number of counters reflected the immense size of the 77W, which is incidentally also the largest passenger aircraft that lands at VIE. I was also slightly puzzled by the check-in counter configuration; Skywards silver and gold members checked in at the business desk – normally gold members are referred to the first class desk.

Emirates operates eight check-in desks for their 777-300ER flight to Vienna. The check-in area was relatively empty two hours before the flight.

VIE was very busy this afternoon.

EK 128 departing at 15:30 from gate A06.

We had to wait for a little while for my dad to arrive from work – I was traveling with both my parents and my younger brother. My older sister unfortunately was not able to make this trip as she was busy doing development related work in Senegal at the time. While waiting, I decided to go the airport restaurant (a sort of mini food court at VIE but not in the fast-food style of US airport food courts) to see whether our plane had already landed. I was lucky, since EK 127 from Dubai arrived at 13:47, moments before I got to the restaurant. As a result, I got to watch our magnificent bird taxi into gate A06 at VIE – she really did look over-sized at the airport!

More evidence of a busy afternoon at VIE. Also, lots of OS!

VIE's largest passenger aircraft visitor arrives!

What a gorgeous beast!

 

Docking at gate A06.

EK cargo containers.