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A comfortable ride across the Atlantic

So, as I have mentioned earlier, I was supposed to go back to Norway January 20, but due to bad weather and maintenance issues with the aircraft, my flying got delayed so I had to postpone my return flight to Norway.

I first called United to see if I could change the return date to January 23, but that wasn’t possible due to my fare being  non-refundable (bought off a sale in October) I then tried to look up one-way tickets to Europe, which are not cheap. Not at all. United wanted over $2000 for a one-way ticket MCO-KRS – in ECONOMY!!! A definite no-no. So after being on the phone with United for 30 minutes, I hung up and called my lovely airline Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) who could give me an award ticket, booked with my miles. The agent was very friendly and found a route that suited me perfectly, with short layovers (at this point I just wanted to get home as quick and efficient as possible) At first he thought I needed a round trip (I didn’t specify I would only need a one-way ticket this time) so he gave me an offer, 40000 miles for a round trip in economy. I then said I only need the one-way, and he figured out I had enough points for a one-way in business. I wasn’t hard to convince, and soon I was booked in business all the way from Orlando, via Frankfurt and Oslo, to Kristiansand. 66000 miles and 256 NOK later, I got my ticket by e-mail. A smooth experience, and actually the first time I have redeeemed any of my frequent flyer points.

I returned my rental car at Sixt, was expedited quickly and took the shuttle to the terminal. I checked in using the First Class / Star Alliance Gold check in counter which had no line what so ever. Checked my two bags and headed for security where Lufthansa apparently doesn’t have a priority lane, which I found kind of weird. I got through it with about 10 minutes of waiting, and took the train over to the concourse where my plane would depart in about 2 hours.

Lufthansa doesn’t have their own lounge in MCO, but uses Delta’s Sky Club. Not a very big selection of snacks, but I guess it was late in the afternoon and not many flights departing. Plenty of seating areas, I had no trouble finding a place to relax before my flight. The bathrooms were very nicely decorated and furnished. I had some snacks, changed into my “I’m crossing the Atlantic at night”-attire (sports bra and a sweat shirt. On board the plane I changed into sweat pants) before the Lounge Dragons announced Lufthansa flight 465 to Frankfurt was ready for boarding, and that a Lufthansa representative would meet us in the lounge and escort us to the gate.

WARNING: Text is below the picture!!!

Delta Sky Club in MCO

Delta Sky Club in MCO


We were then escorted over to the gate where boarding was about to start, but we were the first ones on board the Airbus 340-600 (registration D-AIHH) bound for Frankfurt. They used 2L for boarding and after I entered the cabin I took an immidiate left and found my seat, 8D.

Screen shot 2013-02-23 at 10.39.50 PM

When boarding was announced completed, no one had claimed 08A/C so I moved over to the window seat and got the two-seater all by my self. I like to have direct aisle access on long haul flights, especially at night, but with no one in the C seat I was good to go with my window seat 🙂


A photo I snapped of the leg room in 08D before I switched seats


Once in 08A, I was greeted by the purser with my last name (at first she thought Ms Larsen didn’t board since it was stated in her manifest that I would be sitting in 08D) but I gave her a hint that I just moved seats. She was very polite, and sort of apologetic. She hoped I had a good ground experience in MCO, which I confirmed, but my only complain would be no priority security. I was served a glass of champagne before take off.


Once in 08A, this was my view of the forward business cabin,


On our way to lining up on 35L, ready for take off!


MLB VOR was in our flight plan, but I thought we’d be cleared more direct. But no, we headed south to Melbourne after departure, then started our oceanic crossing from there.


I was handed the menu for tonight’s flight.


I went with the seafood salad as a starter, cod filet as main course and the chocolate for dessert.


But first, time for some beer and nuts. Warsteiner glass bottled beer is a classic onboard Lufthansa in business and first class. Back in economy they serve it on a can.


Seafood salad, probably the best dish in the entire meal. Crisp salad, hot roll and the prawns tasted fresh and delicious.


Nothing left of the seafood salad 😀


The cod tasted OK but the presentation lacked some I thought. Kind of sloppy.


“Would you care for some chocolate, Ms Larsen?” How awesome, they said Ms Larsen to me throughout the meal service. Nice touch! The chocolate was heavenly!


Time to get some rest! The old business class seats on board Lufthansa doesn’t recline 180 degrees. My biggest complaint with the seat, however, is the area around your feet when the seat is fully reclined. It reclines under the seat in front of you, and the space around your feet is very limited.

Never the less, I got 4 hours of sleep and woke up feeling pretty fresh and awake as we crossed in to European airspace. Breakfast service started 1,5 hours before landing.


The breakfast platter consisted of some fresh cold cuts as well as an egg omelet and some potatoes. Fresh fruit, tea and OJ complimented the meal.


Being greeted the best way possible by Europe: With an amazing sunrise


Short final for 07L (new runway) in Frankfurt where we landed 30 minutes ahead of schedule. IMG_0804

D-AIHH parked by the gate after the flight. I disembarked through door 1L and headed straight for the lounge.


Since I had some time until my flight to Oslo, I decided to go to the Welcome Lounge (outside of security) knowing that lounge has more showers than the business/senator lounges airside. Even thought it was kind of a long stroll from Terminal A, it was well worth it. Sophie the Frequent Flyer Bear liked it a lot too 🙂


Feeling refreshed after the shower, I headed to Terminal B where a bus gate awaited my next flight, SK4756 to Oslo. The flight was operated by LN-TUF, a Boeing 737-700.


On board we were served sea bass. The chocolate for dessert was very sweet, but rounded the meal off nicely.


Flying next to Denmark.


North Jylland, Denmark.

I hate transferring international-domestic in Oslo, because I have to go through customs, recheck my bags and go through security again. But it was the only option available on award tickets that day so I just had to suck it up. My bags actually appeared early on the baggage belt with their priority tags, so I headed through customs, up to the departure level and got through security.

Now, remember the girl I met when I departed Oslo 1,5 weeks earlier? Well, guess who I met in the domestic terminal this Thursday afternoon? The same girl! What are the odds?!? We just accidentally bumped in to each other. She was headed to Bergen for the weekend. Our flights departed from the same area of the terminal so we found a place to sit until boarding started.


This is the gate for my flight, SK221 to Kristiansand. You’d think it was the last helicopter out of Vietnam.


I was one of the last to board and found my seat, 11F. Full flight, and all the overhead bins were full. I ended up with my carry on Rimowa under the seat in front of me, with my backpack on my lap and feet on the Rimowa (Sorry, my dear little suitcase)

We took of late, but at that point I didn’t care. To be honest, I fell asleep before pushback and didn’t wake up until we had started our descent into Kristiansand.

It was a very comfortable trip, though it cost me some miles, it was definitely worth it.

The service I received with Lufthansa was very good. They are upgrading their business class seats to something similar to what Swiss offers. I’m eager to try that product out, but for now it’s hit-or-miss if you get an aircraft with the new business class seats.

The meals were consistenly very good.

My only complaint is, as mentioned before, the lack of priority security in MCO for business class/ Star Gold passengers.

That’s all I have for now 🙂 Hope you enjoyed following along my trip home from Florida!




Jeg fikk som tidligere nevnt, visumpapirene med UPS i går, og jeg gjorde like så godt ferdig DS-160, signerte I-20 og betalte SEVIS, samt bestilte visumintervjutime i dag. Datoen for intervjuet er 14.september, så i stedet for å dra hjem mandag fra Oslo, blir jeg hos Runa en natt ekstra. Tror det skulle gå greit 🙂
Conditions to spend the night at her place:

Bring: Sørlandschips & Arendals pils 🙂
I can do that.

Tilbake til Oslo skal jeg allerede på onsdagen, så det blir jo bare 12 timer på Sørlandet før jeg drar til Gardermoen for å tilbringe dagen på vestsiden av vestre bane på Oslo Lufthavn Gardermoen, med mange andre flygeeks, for å beskue Lufthansas A380. 😀

Herregud som jeg gleder meg. Håper på lowpass! Det hadde toppet 2xF-16 lowpass på Geiteryggen i sommer – no doubt!

Florida update

Jeg føler det er på tide med en liten oppdatering, hva Florida angår. Jeg har fått scoren på TOEFL, og jeg fikk 105 poeng, hvor 120 er maksimum poengscore. Jeg trengte “bare” 80 for å bli akseptert ved Aerosim, så da var det betryggende at jeg var godt innenfor grensen. Jeg har lest litt på hva andre universitet har som inntakskrav på TOEFL, og da fant jeg ut at eksempelvis Colombia og Harvard har 100 poeng som TOEFL-krav. Det er jo litt artig, da.

Neida, så tiden går nå frem mot avreise. I dag kjøpte jeg en duffle bag på 135 liter som jeg skal pakke det meste av klær og slikt i. Resten av tingene mine skal jeg ha i en koffert, har jeg tenkt. Jeg tracker pakken med I-20 papirene på og pr. 07.08 am i dag, var pakken “out for delivery” fra Gardermoen, så da har jeg nok den her før helgen, i alle fall. Det blir koselig å tilbringe helgen med å book intervju på ambassaden og fylle ut papirene hehe 🙂

UPS tracking. Heftig reiserute for visumpapirene mine.

Til søndag drar jeg til Oslo for å gjennomføre JAA class 1 medical, som jeg trodde jeg gjennomførte hos en lege i Vennesla, men som visstnok må gjennomføres på Flymedisinsk på Blindern første gangen. Jaja, skulle gå greit, legen i Vennesla mener jeg klarer med1 uten større problemer, så da satser vi på det. Har time klokken 8.00 på mandagen, så det er derfor jeg drar til hovedstaden dagen i forveien. Reiser hjem fra Oslo på mandags ettermiddag. På onsdag bærer det til Oslo igjen, men ikke Oslo by. Da skal jeg tilbringe en dag på Gardermoen, for da kommer Lufthansas A380 på besøk. Flyr med SAS t/r KRS-OSL og ser frem til det. Har ikke flydd med SAS siden februar, så da følte jeg det var på tide. 😛

Uken etter blir det sannsynligvis nok et Oslo besøk, men da for å bli intervjuet på US Embassy om F-1 visumet mitt. Regner ikke med at det skal by på noen problemer. Har allerede begynt å forberede meg litt til det intervjuet, hva jeg skal si, ikke si og så videre.

Dessuten har jeg begynt å pakke! Eller, jeg har skrevet en liste over ting jeg må ha med meg, og hva jeg ikke må ha med meg. Boblejakka skal få lov til å bli igjen i Norge, men det meste av sommerklærene skal bli med, selv om det naturligvis blir litt shopping i begynnelsen. Leiligheten jeg skal bo i er ferdig innredet, så trenger for såvidt ingen husholdningsartikler, utover det jeg kan få kjøpt på WallieWorld.

Nej, nå må jeg kanskje avslutte. xoxo.

Lufthansa Airbus 380-800 til OSL

I anledning “only God knows what” kommer en av Lufthansens lufthvaler (Airbus 380) til Oslo Lufthavn Gardermoen (OSL) 15.september 2010 i 11-tiden. Hvis jeg går glipp av dette eventet, tror jeg ikke at jeg har noe å leve for lenger. Nesten. Takket være Scanair-forumet fikk jeg øynene opp for denne begivenheten. Tusen takk!

Lufthvalen i all hennes prakt

Derfor har jeg allerede nå begynt å kikke på flybilletter fra Kristiansand Kjevik til OSL, med litt forskjellige routinger. Det helt klart enkleste (og billigste) ville helt klart vært å gå for Norwegian t/r KRS-OSL for 400 kroner, men det er helt klart et kjedelig alternativ. Derfor kikket jeg litt rundt på

Under ungdomsbilletter åpenbarte det seg et paradis for flyfreaks som meg selv. Routingen Kristiansand-OSL (med SAS) og retur via Bergen med Widerøe til 1200,- er faktisk ikke så ille. Dessuten ligger det an til en ny flytype mellom BGO og KRS, nemlig De Havilland DHC-8 Series 300. Great success! Mye mer spennende routing, og mer flying – ultimat kombinasjon.

Reiseruten min (klikk for større versjon)

Da ønsker jeg meg selv en riktig god tur! Har leseren(e) min(e) noen flyplaner i nærmeste fremtid?

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