Guest allie

How bad is the flight?

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    Guest allie

    Ok people be honest...how bad is the flight to Adelaide? The longest I have been on a plane was 15 hours and it was horrendous!!! Im guessing that 30 hours of travelling with 2 stops is not going to be much fun but im hoping im wrong! It looks like our itinery will have to be glasgow-heathrow-singapore-adelaide.

     

    Also, we will be booking seats with extra leg room (the OH is a big tall bloke!) and i was wondering how this works if one of your flights is with a different airline.

     

    Any tips for making the flight nicer would be appreciated :)

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    Guest familygood

    Hi Allie,

     

    Well I have done Sydney-Bangkok-Heathrow on my own (about 26 hrs all in) and it wasn't pleasant at all! Luckily no hold ups etc. but it is still unimaginably boring... Watch all the films even if they are rubbish is my advice ('Love Guru' anyone?!) Singapore airport is cool with quite a lot to do - free internet and a pool!

     

    It could be worse - we have a two year old with us when we fly in January!!! Fun times...

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    Guest ben&sharon

    Yep - we did it with an active two year old. Here and back and back here again. He managed it, so you two should do it just fine!!! Singapore airport is a help - great place to stop over for a few hours. :)

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    Guest familygood

    How is Port Noarlunga? We ahve just booked our short term rental for 6 weeks when we arrive. Sorry to hijack post Allie!!

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    Guest Jo&Phil

    Ooh ..... it sounds like you're in for an interesting time of 15 hours is hard going ........ but just think, it's only the 2 of you - no rug rats so while it may be boring, at least you don't have to entertain, feed, amuse and stop small people from running amok .... you just have to do this for yourselves! Plus you may get to sleep or drink some appropriate beverage to assist in doing so.

     

    Some tips from a relatively regular traveller ....... might help ...?????

    - If you can, pick the shortest route which tends to be LHR to Sydney or Melbourne and then hop to Adelaide OR LHR to Singapore and then direct to Adelaide. Personally I avoid LHR-HongKong-Oz as this is 12 hours each leg, ie 24 when there are shorter alternatives

    - If time isn't an issue and you can afford it, break the journey in Singapore (or Malaysia or Hong Kong if need's be) and stay overnight there for at least one night

    - Avoid 6 hours plus in an airport ....... boring as anything and even Changi (Singapore) gets boring after a bit

    - Pre book seats ........ personally I like aisle seats as I like to wander about and annoy people but you may prefer a window seat ...... if there are 2 of you and you're travelling economy then one of you will get a middle seat UNLESS you book 2 aisle seats and sit slightly staggered from each other. Up to you in terms of personal comfort etc OR book via Malyasian Airlines or Singapore whose economy configuration is 2 5 2 in economy from Kuala Lumper or Singapore so you'll get a window / aisle together for the last leg ................. you can pre book this with your travel agent/airline.

    Re seat pitch and leg room .......... have a look online for this, you can look at flight seating/configuration on various websites .. google something like 'airline seat pitch' for best results

    Good luck ...... the journey may be long and boring but it's worth the effort to get here!

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    Guest pushbutton

    The first time I did the flight to Australia from Manchester it was an absolute nightmare. Sorry but I'm being honest as you asked! It was just horrendous and I thought it would never end. By the way I say the first time was horrendous because I've now done that journey probably about 30 or so times, and I'm somewhat used to it. It's still not pleasant though and I'm always very glad when it's over.

     

    That said, if I can offer you any more positive thoughts they would be that:

    1. You have done a 15 hour flight before (presumably non-stop??) If you're having 2 stops on the journey to Australia then you shouldn't be in the air for anywhere near 15 hours at a time, so in a sense the flight you previously did was longer. Are these stops just a couple of hours in airports, or are they overnight / full day stops? If you can possibly have at least one full day break during the journey it makes it 10 times more bearable. I made the big mistake of not booking a stopver on my most recent trip back to Britain, just to save a few hundred dollars. I will never do it again! Anyway have an overnight stopover if you can possibly afford to.

     

    2. Since that horrendous first journey I did back in 1988, things have changed a lot. All major airlines these days provide seatback TVs with at least a decent choice of videos to watch, a few video games, and most importantly in my opinion, the ability to see a map showing where you are, how long left in the journey etc. That was not available when I first used to fly to Australia and that's partly why it felt even longer than it really was. Other than 2 movies shown on a central screen that I couldn't see most of the time, there was no entertainment at all. Worst of all though, there was no way of knowing where you were or how long was left to go.

     

    Despite the above, it is still an incredibly long and uncomfortable journey. However being a seasoned travellor I know a few ways to try to make it a little less uncomfortable.

     

    - If the airline allows you to check in online (and most of the big ones do now) then do so as soon as it is possible to do so (usually 24 hours in advance I think). That way you can choose the best seats before anyone else takes them.

     

    - If you get travel sick, obviously take medication for it well before the flight, but also consider buying the special magnetic wristbands you can get from any chemist because they really do help too (for me anyway). Take a bottle or two of Lucosade, or something similar onto the plane (buy it in a shop AFTER you have gone through security checks, otherwise they won't let you take it on board). These sort of drinks help to replace the natural salt and other chemicals in your body, which can prevent you feeling ill.

     

    - As an emergency alternative to Lucosade (if you can't buy it in the airport or you run out) and if you find yourself actually feeling sick during the flight, ask the staff for a sachet or two of salt (or pack a couple of sachets in your hand luggage), mix it into a glass of water, and drink that. Ok I know it sounds horrible, but it does cure the feeling of nausia, and that makes it worthwhile having the horrible taste of salt in your mouth for a few seconds. You can easily get rid of it quickly by drinking something nicer straight away afterwards, or brushing your teeth.

     

    - Also another way to minimise the chance of travel sickness is to choose a seat as close as possible to the middle of the aircraft, where there's less movement compared to the front or back. The absolute worst place to sit is right at the back near the toilets! Avoid at all costs!!!

     

    In terms of more general comfort besides travel sickness, some people find they can be reasonably comfortable, quite enjoy the food and entertainment and have no real problems comfort-wise. Others are not so lucky. However again you can help to maximise your general comfort by:

    - Choosing seats near the middle of the aircraft. This will tend to be near the front of economy class, not too far from the toilets, (but far enough not to be disturbed too much by people going in and out) and makes for a faster entry and exit to/ from the plane. Best seats are the ones near a fire exit as they have extra leg-room. However you usually can't choose these seats online so the best way to get them is get to the airport early and ask staff at the bag drop counter for these seats before anyone else gets a chance to! (Make sure you have still chosen the best possible alternative seats when you checked in online, as I said above, in case the staff at the bag-drop won't let you sit at the fire exit)

     

    - Wear loose-fitting, warm clothes (it will generally get very cold once the aircraft reaches full altitude). Better to have a nice warm jumper on when you first board the plane, and if you do get TOO warm you can always take it off.

     

    - Taking onboard a few interesting books or magazines

     

    - Taking onboard a decent soft neck pillow,

     

    - Taking on board a pair of slippers to wear

     

    - Arranging your carry-on bags BEFORE you leave the departure lounge so that when you get in the plane, you can just quickly shove them in the overhead lockers and sit down. That way you avoid holding up other passengers and possibly delaying the flight, and you avoid a lot of the pushing and shoving that goes with messing around in the overhead lockers at the same time as everyone else.

     

    - Don't board the plane when they first call you. Monitor the queue at the gate and wait until there's almost nobody else left to board. Be one of the last ones on the plane. That makes for a little less time in the cramped stuffy smelly aircraft (even if it is only a few minutes it helps!) and hopefully avoids having to wait behind everyone else while they all fiddle around with their bags etc because they're too disorganised and inconsiderate to get themselves sorted before they board!

     

    Well I hope that's of some help to you, should you decide to go ahead with the journey.

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    Guest Kazzarazza

    Hi Allie

    Personally, I would avoid Heathrow like the plague. Horrible place. Would also avoid Melbourne and Sydney because all the extra messing around really takes it out of you. Best for me is Singapore Airlines - Manchester to Singapore (12-13 hours), Singapore to Adelaide (6 and a half to 7 hours). Book a room in the airport hotel - there are now 3 of them. You can book a 6 hour block with additional hours if you want. You can have a sleep, shower and change - promise you'll feel like a million dollars. Book a Singapore tour as soon as you arrive in the airport (4 to chose from) for later in the day, so you can get out of the airport and have a look around. By the time you get back off the coach, you have enough time to eat some food and before you know it you'll be on the Adelaide flight. This one is a breeze leaving very late at night, after your trip around Singapore, and lands in Adelaide early the next morning - along with a wonderful sunrise if your lucky.

    All the best, Kazza.

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    Guest ben&sharon
    How is Port Noarlunga? We ahve just booked our short term rental for 6 weeks when we arrive. Sorry to hijack post Allie!!

     

    And sorry to respond!! Where will you be staying? We're with Tamara (HomesDownUnder) and it's very comfortable. She and her OH have been brilliant about helping us to settle in from a practical view - we wouldn't be half as far in if we'd been on our own. The area is very nice - the beach is stunning and we are a short walk from an enormous shopping mall, so we've not really gone without anything.

     

    All good so far... :)

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    Guest familygood

    Excellent, we have booked her Seaview House so that sounds great. Any extra help will be appreciated! Hope it continues to go well for you.

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    Guest ben&sharon
    Excellent, we have booked her Seaview House so that sounds great. Any extra help will be appreciated! Hope it continues to go well for you.

     

    You'll have no problems, then - we're in Riverview Cottage, which I think is the one behind that house. Brilliant location, and lovely people.

     

    x

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    Back on track. The flights are really not that bad. I do more hours in the air than thst every 5 weeks to get to and from work. You just have to switch off, and thinkof whats at the end of it. There is plenty of films and entertainment on board, and you are able to get up and walk about to stretch your legs, so it really isn't that bad. The only advice i can give is to try to be tired when you board the long legs from heathrow to singapore, maybe get up very early in the day. This will make it easier to sleep on this leg. Then depending on how long you have in singapore there is plenty to do, lots of shops, and nice and esay to get around, unlike heathrow. Try Harry's bar which is at the tranfer terminal, and opposite burger king, good to just get out and get some fresh air. The singapore flight is usually a nighttime flight, arriving in adelaide in morning, so if you can, try to sleep on plane, then stay awake as long as possible on day of arrival, this will help get over the jet-lag. Only my personal experiences from travelling back and forth to Africa every 5 weeks.

     

    Shaun

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    Hi on some sound advice we flew from heathrow to melbourne via abu dabai with a 2 year old and a 4 year old. We left heathrow at 0830 and arrived in melbourne at 1730 and coming back left at 2130 and got back at 1330 and had no jet lag. The flight timings were crucial as the long part of the flight from abu dadai to melbourne were both at night ish so the little ones slept the whole flight apert from the last few hours pretty much. Also when we got there got the car got to the hotel as it was night time and with all of the excitement they went straight down again and slept the whole night. Would defenetly recomend these timings and will use them again. Like i say no jet lag which still amazes me.

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    There's no getting round it, the flight is incredibly boring, at least the leg to Singapore is. I've done Australia and back 7 times now and each time it seems like more of a chore. The flight down to Adelaide is relatively quick, at approximately 7 hours, so it's not too bad.

     

    Personally I hate night flights. The older I get, the more difficult I find it to sleep, so next time we will take the morning flight out of Heathrow instead of a late night one and book a few hours in the airport hotel at Singapore to have a decent sleep before the next leg. On night flights I always manage to get a seat near the person who wants to read all night with their light on, or who is constantly pressing the call button for the air hostess, or who keeps pulling their window blind up and down, or who wants to stay up all night getting drunk.

     

    If you don't have young children to worry about then you are incredibly lucky. Flying with kids isn't much fun. Ever since they've had seatback TV screens we've had small children to worry about so I've never managed to see a film the whole way through! When we didn't have kids it was when you had to watch a couple of movies peering over people's heads on a big screen - which was never very satisfactory. My kids also have a knack of needing mummy just when I'm nodding off to sleep. :mad:

     

    They say not to drink too much if any alcohol, but to drink plenty of water. Last time we went to Australia I didn't have any alcohol at all, which may explain why I couldn't sleep, but I did feel better for it. If you drink too much of anything you spend your whole time having to go to the loo!

     

    Another tip is not to take too much in hand luggage. I always used to pack too much, and then spend the whole time losing things in my bags, on the floor, under the seat etc. Your lips/skin/nostrils can get very dry with the air-conditioning in the cabin, so hand cream and lip salve are a good idea (remember they need to be in a plastic bag through security though). It can get very cold on the plane at night, though I have founds flights to vary.

     

    If you sit at the back of the plane behind the engines it is much noisier. So try and sit in front of the engines and take some ear plugs - essential if you want to get some sleep and drown out the sound of the drunken passengers next to you who are intent on partying all night (only happened to me once and I was so glad of those earplugs!).

     

    However it is all worth it in the end. It's great as you get towards South Australia, if you are lucky you might see an amazing sunrise over the Australian desert on the way down. Then it gets greener, the Adelaide Hills come into view with the masts on Mount Lofty, and you see the grid of houses and the airport, with Glenelg and the sea beyond, and it's as if you've never been away.....

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