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#935648 by mitchja
29 May 2017, 18:59
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After 3 busy days in New York (my feet didn't thank me) what with the usual site-seeing as well as a couple of DL JFK>BOS tier point runs, it was time to head back home.

Checked in using the app the previous day. As I'd already posted elsewhere, if you have TSA-Pre status, that isn't showing up on the VS iOS Wallet boarding passes so you either need to use the in-app one or get a paper one from the airport.

I was staying at the InterContinental New York Barclay on 48th/Lexington Avenue. I usually stay in the area when I'm in New York. The flight to MAN departs JFK at 21:30. My IHG status gives me late check-out so made full use of that and headed back to JFK using the E line subway/AirTrain again.

All 4 Premium Economy desks where all in use, virtually no waiting where I was checked in by a very friendly and polite check-in agent. Didn't take too long to get though the TSA-Pre security line.

The VS128 was departing from gate B26 using G-VKSS (Mademoiselle Rouge) this evening. Decided to eat in the terminal before the flight. Plenty of choices for that. The flight was called around 20:30.

Looking at the seat map via the VS app, I could see this evening's flight was not going to be busy. Originally I was sat in 19A so enquired at the gate if anything was available in row 18; the bulk-head row and there was so my boarding pass was replaced and I was soon moved to 18A. Priority boarding was in use and working well.

I was actually pretty much first on where I was again warmly welcomed on-board. Headed to 18A, actually forgot just how much leg room those window Premium Economy bulk-head seats actually have on the A333's!!

Pre-departure drinks offered. Amenity kit already on seat (never got one on the outbound?). It really didn't take long for everyone to board as it turned out there where only 124 pax on this evening's flight (+ 11 crew). The door was closed and we pushed back 10 minutes early round 21:20.

At this point my pre-ordered Retail Therapy duty-free order was delivered to my seat.

This evenings flight would be 6hrs 4mins.

There where only about 12 pax in Premium Economy so there was lots of space to spread out. Once the seat belt sign was turned off the bar service soon commenced and the IFE was switched on.

I lasted about 20minutes after this point I think as then I was out for the count for the rest of the flight. Next thing I knew was been woken up by the announcement that we where soon arriving at Manchester. I'd completely skipped the dinner service so cannot comment on that (I'd had already planned to skip the hot part of it anyway as looking at the menu nothing really appealed to me anyway).

The crew had actually left me a breakfast tray on the next seat which was a nice touch :) Fresh fruit, yogurt and granola which was all very tasty followed by a mug of tea. Just what I needed.

The cabin was soon secured and we touched down at MAN around 8:30 and where at the gate by 08:50. Said goodbyes to the crew and headed to immigration. We just got there before another flight so very little waiting at the e-gates. Looks like more e-gates are currently being installed. There's 4 or 5 at the minute.

Headed down to the carousel and bags where soon coming off and I was outside by 09:20.

All in all another great VS flight.

The DL flights are crediting to my Flying Club account before the VS flights are!! DL seem to take around 24 hours where as VS flights take about 48 hours.
#935654 by ScoobySu
30 May 2017, 10:36
Hi James

Many thanks for the TR - we missed you by about an hour and a half at MAN arrivals!
#935656 by mitchja
30 May 2017, 11:09
I was actually amazed at how quick MAN arrivals was. So much quicker than LHR arrivals :-D

Still annoys me though that immigration staff at MAN are quite happy to sit at deserted desks waiting to do something whilst they push everyone through the e-gates >-( It seems they only let families with children through the manual desks.

Several people where being rejected by the e-gates (seen this happen at LHR as well).

I personally think the issue is the photo page in your passport as if you are not careful when you insert your passport, the photo page folds where the plastic lamination bit ends near the top of the page meaning the reader doesn't read the page correctly. Had this happen once or twice with Global Entry machines as well.


Be interesting to see if I get the Silver or Gold flight bonus for the return VS flight as whilst I was still technically Silver when I departed JFK (even though the previous days DL flights will have pushed me back up to Gold; I also didn't chance asking about JFK Clubhouse entry as my FC account hadn't updated at that point as the DL flights hadn't yet posted).

Those DL flights posted over-night last night and my Flying Club account has now also updated to Gold status :-D

The manual VS miles credit system no longer works like it used to either as you used to be able to just do a manual online miles claim pretty as soon as you landed and the VS miles/TP's would be posted. That no longer works on the new system.
#935657 by ScoobySu
30 May 2017, 11:51
mitchja wrote:I was actually amazed at how quick MAN arrivals was. So much quicker than LHR arrivals :-D

Still annoys me though that immigration staff at MAN are quite happy to sit at deserted desks waiting to do something whilst they push everyone through the e-gates >-( It seems they only let families with children through the manual desks.

Several people where being rejected by the e-gates (seen this happen at LHR as well).

I personally think the issue is the photo page in your passport as if you are not careful when you insert your passport, the photo page folds where the plastic lamination bit ends near the top of the page meaning the reader doesn't read the page correctly. Had this happen once or twice with Global Entry machines as well..


I agree! There were four or five e-gates open and we could see four manual desks with nobody going to!
#935660 by Sealink
30 May 2017, 15:03
mitchja wrote:
Several people where being rejected by the e-gates (seen this happen at LHR as well).

I personally think the issue is the photo page in your passport as if you are not careful when you insert your passport, the photo page folds where the plastic lamination bit ends near the top of the page meaning the reader doesn't read the page correctly. Had this happen once or twice with Global Entry machines as well.



Exactly this.

And in fact, the chip in my card is damaged, so the e-gates NEVER work.
Thankfully the good folk at Gatwick last week finally let me join the standard queue.

Usually what happens is I am told to go to e-gates, try one gate. Doesn't work. Then I'm told to try another e-gate by, I'm afraid to say, staff who appear to be incapable of thought. This is despite my attempts to explain. I will get it replaced when I am at home for more than a week!

So Gatwick last Thursday was a pleasant surprise.
#935736 by tomthumb
04 Jun 2017, 14:23
Great TR and nice touch by the CC ref breakfast
#935923 by David
11 Jun 2017, 21:30
mitchja wrote:Checked in using the app the previous day. As I'd already posted elsewhere, if you have TSA-Pre status, that isn't showing up on the VS iOS Wallet boarding passes so you either need to use the in-app one or get a paper one from the airport.



James.

Seems to be fixed now. Sitting in the Delta lounge at MCO and noticed the little green tick is now showing on the apps boarding pass.

Saves a huge amount of time with laptops, belts, shoes etc.

David.
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