Our local airport is Cardiff, and although it is convenient it does not have the choice of destinations as the larger airports. Anglesey may be worth a visit but it’s not currently on our bucket list. However, during the summer months, the holiday airlines arrive at Cardiff opening up a number of destinations across Europe. So a few weeks ago we grabbed the opportunity to visit Lindos on Rhodes, flying with Thomson Airways.
The airport experience wasn’t as good as previously. Cardiff airport is usually quiet but it struggled to cope with the summer holiday crowds. I do wonder the point of online check-in, especially when you get to the airport and everyone is put in the same queue and forced to go through the usual rigmarole.
Also, security was slow and once in the lounge the food and drink options are pretty poor, a waitress dropped a plate of food and just left it! She probably hasn’t done the dustpan and brush training course yet.
Anyway, apologies to Thomson Airways as these things are out of their control.
Luckily once on the plane, we began to relax. The plane itself appeared quite new, if it wasn’t new then it must have had a recent refit. It was clean, the interior was fresh and we were greeted by friendly staff. There was a 20 min delay on the tarmac due to air traffic control restrictions but the captain kept us informed and up to date with the situation, you can hear this on the video.
We were soon on our way taking off from runway 30 (a little bit of information for the aviation geeks). The weather was good and the entire flight was very smooth.
The flight time was 4 hours so we had plenty of time to try out the in-flight services. There was the usual selection of snacks and drinks, however, none of the soft drinks were chilled including the wine. We have found this on a number of airlines recently and plane wine DOES need chilling!
Later we tried the bacon ciabatta, although it tasted fine because of the way it was cooked on board it looked a bit pale and didn’t really resemble the menu picture.
Again the staff on board were very helpful throughout the service, just avoid the wine!
Overall, we were impressed with Thomson Airways and their service, it felt much better than the budget airlines. All onboard staff, from the pilots to the cabin crew were polite and professional and as mentioned, the plane itself appeared well maintained.
The food on board was OK but as most European flights are relatively short, a snack and a coffee are all you need.
You do not have to book a Thomson package holiday to fly with Thomson Airways as all flights can be booked separately. We would definitely fly with Thomson Airways again but just hope Cardiff ground staff would sort themselves out over the summer.
A quick well done to the return pilot who made a perfect landing at Cardiff in 39mph gusty winds!