When did you take a plane for the first time? What did you notice about the airport or the flight itself?
My first flight was with my family, flying from Los Angeles to Paris in 1968. I remember we had a night flight from LAX to New York and arrived at the crack of dawn. Even though I was very excited, I don't remember anything about that flight, but I remember the distinctive TWA terminal in New York, which was brand new. Then we flew from JFK to Orly. It was a Boeing 707, and there were black and white TV monitors every few rows where one would now find luggage lockers. I remember that the movie was 'Madigan' and it was of no interest whatsoever.
The flight was late and arrived shortly before midnight, which was very lucky for us because if it had been 15 minutes later, we would have been diverted to Le Bourget, since Orly is closed at night (that hasn't changed) -- and my grandparents were waiting for us at Orly.
Even though most of the details are forgotten, one thing that I find interesting is that transatlantic flights to Europe used to be during the day instead of overnight. I wonder when they changed that...
I was too little to remember very much, in fact I'll have to ask my mother when I took my first plane trip.
The first one I remember was when my mother, my brother, & I flew from Louisiana to Alaska, where my dad was stationed. He was already up there. I must have been @4, so my brother was @2 1/2.
I remember two things about what must have been several flights on that trip. One was that we were stuck in the White Horse, Canada airport for some time. During that time I decided to get rid of my brother, so closed him into a phone booth. This was the old wooden kind, with a window at the top of the door. My mother freaked out looking for him, until finally someone saw the top of a little curly head in the window of the phone booth. I also remember that my brother was traveling with his two favorite stuffed animals, Bunny and Kitty. Bunny was a rabbit and Kitty was a tiger. They were lost at some leg of the trip, something my brother brought up for years afterward.
Here's a picture I found on ebay, marked "Canada, Yukon Territory, Whitehorse, town, airport on bench above town". The photo looks old, so maybe I was even in the airport when it was taken. Click on it to see it full size.
I don't remember much of the details, but when I was 13 years of age I flew from Tampa to Atlanta on a prop plane. I was headed for a summer camp in North Carolina, dressed in my best "church clothes" and traveling by myself.
My first plane trip was when I was 7 and we were emigrating from England to Canada. The flight was from London to Toronto, but we stopped in Rekjavik, Iceland for a few hours to eat and run around. I remember that it was pretty cool outside, although it was August, and not far from the airfield we could see small horses grazing.
We then stopped in Goose Bay, Labrador for another meal before arriving in Toronto.
Mine was in 1971. In a small Piper Cub owned by the father a high school friend of mine. We were both at college in Boston and he flew us home to Long Island for the Thanksgiving holiday our freshman year. I can't recall my first commercial airplane trip.
I didn't know that you had emigrated from England to Canada BJD. I just always assumed you were originally from Canada.
My first flight was when my family moved back to Canada from France in 1966, being only 2 years old, I have no memories of that flight.
My third flight was when I was a 21 year old on a flight to Toronto on my own for meetings at my Head Office. On the return flight the taxi driver dropped me at the incorrect terminal and once I realized this I had to charm one of the Hotel shuttle drivers to take me over to the other terminal before missing my flight! Then when I walked into the terminal and over the intercom they were asking for a Russian translator at a gate, thought perhaps I originally had been dropped off at the correct terminal as I looked at the boards and saw only International flights and then seen the one only domestic flight in the middle of them. Thank goodness for information desks and for no fear of asking for help.
Regulars will not be surprised that as soon as I was mobile with a bicycle, at age 11, I was venturing out to our two local airfields, Hawkinge and Lympne. Soon after the war ended a company started up at Lympne doing charter work and pleasure flights. One day my friend and I scraped together the necessary 10 shillings, 50p in todays money for a 20 min flip round the local area. I sat in front with the pilot who I learnt much later was a Battle of Britain veteran, and he allowed me to take the controls. This was the type of aeroplane, an Auster similar to those used for artillery spotting during the war.
Man is not lost, only temporarily uncertain of his position
Post by cheerypeabrain on Jul 7, 2013 20:48:50 GMT
I was about ten years old, my Dad's business partner had a four seater plane, we flew from a small airfield in Leicestershire...probably Stoughton altho I don't remember exactly. We landed at Luton, Bedfordshire. I remember feeling very sick, and that my Dad's friend allowed him to take the controls for a bit which he LOVED.
I also remember Mike banking over a river as we came into land. I did not enjoy the experience but was so thrilled that my Dad took me with him that I pretended that I did. Being one of six children I reveled in any opportunity to spend time with Dad on my own.
It was quite significant in a way because it was when Dad and three friends of his decided to leave their jobs and start up a small business designing and making telescopes to sell. The flight that I joined my father and Mike (who financed the venture) on also involved us visiting the factory in Luton that Mike had leased. In the following few months the family moved from Leicester to a small village in Bedfordshire.
The first commercial flight that I went on was in 1991 when I flew with a colleague from Birmingham to Hamburg, where we were taught how to use the Olympus PK7100 Blood Grouping Analyser at the Olympus HQ there.
Olympus paid for us to travel Business Class which was very nice, and put us up in an excellent hotel. I loved Hamburg, when we had free time we had a wander around the shops and ate out at different restaurants every evening. Unfortunately there wasn't much time to look around the sights, I'd really like to visit Germany again.
The flights were a much happier experience for me, compared to the ordeal of my childhood. However, I don't particularly enjoy flying and have only flown 10 times.
I sympathise with you Cheery, modern commercial flights cannot be approached as enjoyable, just endurable. The big European manufacturer rightly calls itself "Airbus". Treat it as a travel experience and enjoy the view if you can get one, the changing clouds, try and remember your school maps and fathom out where you are. I have always studied the maps before I go and try to keep track of where I am. Old habits die hard ;D
Nowadays I must admit I simply refuse to contemplate airline travel, not because of the flight, but all the nonsense at each end.
Man is not lost, only temporarily uncertain of his position
At 22, I flew Tampa>NYC>Madrid on my first trans Atlantic flight. The NYC>Madrid plane was a Lockheed L1011 and it had so few passengers, both on the way over and on the return trip, that I was able to get a row of five middle seats, flip up all their armrests, and stretch out to get several hours of restful sleep. Now days, every flight feels like a bunch of sardines packet into a tin can. I'd love some sort of happy medium.
I was lucky enough to get on a plane maybe 10 years ago for a flight from Rome to Cincinnati (cheen-cheen-NAAHT-tee) with an empty row of three seats. As soon as the plane had taken off I moved to take over the row and discovered yes, I can sleep on a plane--something I'd never managed before. Slept like a baby, a log or whatever else for six hours straight.
First flight I was very young, all I remember was it was on a DC-3 and my mother telling me she had flown on a DC-3 when she was a child. Probably Sacto to SF, that was the usual flight we took then.
On our flight to Paris, 10 days after the terrorist attack of 9/11, we were almost alone on the plane, we all were able to lay out on a row of seats. On our way home 2 weeks later they changed our flight time and combined three flights into one, I have never been on a flight with that many people crammed into a plane.
My first flight ever was at the age of two with my parents when we left Kenya. The aircraft was a BOAC Flying Boat which left from Lake Victoria ( I think) and landed in the harbour at Durban, South Africa.
My first flight was 1980 at the age of 20 from FRA to NYC to DC with my best friend.
I just had met my first husband so we staid outside the airport to talk, by the time we entered the building last call for our flight was announced, well by the time we reached the gate doors had closed and we missed it , but the people at the gate re-booked us for the next day without a charge, can you believe it?
A day later we get to NYC and started searching for our luggage which made the flight the previous day, but to no avail, so we took the next flight to DC not knowing if we'll find it there or have a vacation without clothes ;D, getting to the lost and found at DC our backpacks were there and not even registered by then, so we just could take them and leave.
We flew on VUSA tickets inside the US so not everything went as planned, got stranded in St. Louis met great people that gave us their app. for a night, got to LA found out that we didn't know anybody so caught the next flight to San Francisco, had to go from there back to St. Louis to reach Seattle, often planes were pretty empty so we could take two rows and sleep on the red eyes, crazy but a lot of fun .
My first flight was 1989 to Honolulu - a friend invited me to join her out of the blue and since I had never seen a real ocean, been to the US or flown I figured I shouldn't let this opportunity go to waste ha ha. We had quite the connecting flights but I let said friend do all the arranging because she had traveled several times to Honolulu and I trusted she knew what she was doing. (hindsight not so much.... we used a travel agency of course back then) We flew FRA-LHR-Charlotte-SFO stayed one night in SFO where we desperately tried to book a flight to Honolulu (she had never flown in August before not knowing how hard it would be to get a "local" flight from SF to Oahu) Her idea was .... oh we get a cheap flight from Frankfurt to SF and then book an even cheaper flight there to Hawai'i. Back then cheap meant 2000 DM just to SF and I had to get a VISA as well. I think this was literally a few month before the waiver program started.
I don't remember much about the flights nor the airports because I was just following her, learning on the go because I had to make the return trip by myself. Needless to say I was never really intimidated flying alone after that (my english was only ok back then so it was slightly scary but after 2 weeks in Oahu I got more brave on the return)
I don't exactly remember my first. It was in the late 90s from Delhi to a city in central India called Indore, with an overnight layover in Mumbai. We were shifting from a small town in north India to Indore.
The first flight I remember relatively clearly was my first international one...from Delhi to NYC via Vienna. It was clearly exciting.
Could the flight timings of transatlantic flights be changed to allow for newly sprouted connections eg in Asia?
A look at the Wikipage says "eastbound flow", with flights arriving in the morning in Europe, are for passenger convenience.
Going westbound, since flights arrive in daylight hours, I suppose it's considered that passengers can still do things. No mention of when I started, but I don't remember ever crossing the Atlantic eastbound during the day.
htmb-I know right? I wouldn't do a 2 connection flight now to Europe even if it meant saving a some $$ - just too exhausting. The last time I did a 2 connector was to China (and only because I wanted to fly Asiana ) LOL
The first flight I can remember was from Montréal to Saskatoon. I was 17 and going to a friend's wedding. I don't remember much about the flights, except I fell asleep on the way back and woke with an awful earache. The stewardess put hot oil in my ear to soothe it, except it was way toooo hot! I rapidly declined the oil for the other ear. My girlfriend was very sympathetic - she said "That's what you get for complaining."
embarrasingly mundane: DUS-LHR return, guess I was roughly 15 or 16 back then - however I clearly recall the clouds disappeared just before we got to the Channel and I goggled at those tiny ships below...
ever since, I have only taken one single flight in my entire life that wasn't a window seat.
I always ask for aisle seats too -- not because of claustrophobia, but because it gives more room for my legs and lets me get up from time to time without stepping over several other people. Window seats are okay for short trips over land -- over the ocean, there is not much point.
my first flight was when i was 17, for my high school exchange year. i was very nervous about flying, and asked a guy at school who was flying these tiny airplanes about it, and he said taking a commercial airplane is just like being in a bus. some other friends though told me that if i don't move around enough in the plane i will get thrombosis in my legs, and basically drop dead the moment i get up to leave the plane.
the first part of the flight was from berlin to frankfurt, and i was alone for that part (in frankfurt then i met up with other exchange students and a woman that was accompanying us). all the other passengers seemed to be business people who were all busy reading the newspaper and seemed to fly every week. i remember that the take off really impressed me - it was foggy, and there were drops of water on the window that were suddenly pressed away and after lifting off i first wondered if we are already in the clouds, but that was just the fog and then we were above the fog ... somehow i think i never got such an exhilerating feeling at a take-off again though...
My first flight was when I was eight and flew with my family from CFB Trenton, ON to Metz, France, en route to Dad's NATO posting in Germany (on to Baden-Baden by bus). It was in a four prop Hercules (troop carrier), the flight was something like 12 hours and I threw up twice.