Thomson charter flight from Gatwick to Barbados - Did you have any problems?

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#1
Worthing, West Sussex
46 Posts
Joined Sep 2010
How was your flight with Thomson to Barbados? Did you enjoy flying premium?
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#2
Warwickshire, UK
2,398 Posts
Joined Oct 2007
I have been twice with Thomson but not in Premium. First time six years ago, legroom was very restricted but since then they have removed some seats and now have 33" seat pitch which is 2" more than BA. When we went 2 1/2 years ago, with the increased seat pitch, there was plenty of leg room.
We were served a main meal after take off and a snack before landing and there was as much free drink available as I wanted. The seats had individual video screens. The flights were on time so no real problems.
The flying time to Barbados is around 9 hours but may vary a bit depending on wind speeds.
I do not consider Premium to be worth while. One of the "benefits" is that you get to pay £150 Air Passenger Duty compared to £75 in economy so a large portion of your premium goes in tax.
Brian
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Previous P&O (32) Costa, Royal Caribbean (2), Cunard (2) Princess
#3
York
3,998 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Our Thomson flight out to meet Ventura last Dec was fine in terms of seat pitch, free drinks, entertainment and service. However we were late out and back (3 hours out, 6 hours back) and looking at others' reviews for last winter I was dissapointed how many times people reported their flight to be late.
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Cruises planned:
Oasis of the seas -Feb 2017 B2B with
Oasis of the seas -March 2017 I
Celebrity Eclipse -British Isles, June 17
Independence Of The Seas, Med, Sep 17

Cruises to date:
Celebrity Eclipse - Canary Islands Sep 2016
Celebrity Eclipse - Baltics May 2016
Anthem Of The Seas- Canary Islands Sep 2015
Celebrity Eclipse - Iceland & Norway June 2015
P&O Britannia- Canary Islands March 2015
Celebrity Eclipse - Canary Islands Oct 2014
Celebrity Eclipse - Med May 2014
Celebrity Eclipse - Iceland & Fjords July 2013
Adventure of the seas Transatlantic April 2013
P&O Azura -Baltics May 2012
P&O Ventura -Caribbean Jan 2012
P&O Ventura -Med April 2011
P&O Ventura -Caribbean Dec 2010
P&O Azura -Med May 2010
Independence of the Seas -Med April 2009
#4
Chichester
1,673 Posts
Joined Jan 2008
Travelled with them in Premium and wouldn't bother again. Thomas cook economy is just as good.
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#5
hampshire england
1,157 Posts
Joined Jul 2004
On two P&O fly cruises we have been on Thomson planes from Gatwick to Barbados and we thought they were the best charter flights we have taken. We were in Premium but even the economy seats looked to have a reasonable pitch. We think it is worth the extra (for us) to pay for Premium seats. The food was reasonable for aircraft food - we had proper glasses to drink out of which was amazing and wine poured from a bottle - not those little 25cl bottles. The entertainment was excellent where we had hand sets to operate the seat back tv screens. It meant we could choose what we watched and when and could even pause the film.

This contrasted with our last flight to Barbados which was on Thomas Cook this last March, also Premium. The plane was obviously quite old and the leather on the seats was looking the worse for wear. The food wasn't as good as Thomson and the entertainment was dire. All films and tv programmes were on some sort of loop so you couldn't choose when you started to watch a film. If we do another flycruise I will ask to have seats on a Thomson First Choice plane if they are available.
#6
north bucks
214 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by MattyBarlow
Travelled with them in Premium and wouldn't bother again. Thomas cook economy is just as good.
do hope so, (we will find out soon as we are on same cruise)
are you on the 8.45am flight??
we have travelled premium before , but decided against it this time.
#7
north bucks
214 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
Originally posted by annieuk
On two P&O fly cruises we have been on Thomson planes from Gatwick to Barbados and we thought they were the best charter flights we have taken. We were in Premium but even the economy seats looked to have a reasonable pitch. We think it is worth the extra (for us) to pay for Premium seats. The food was reasonable for aircraft food - we had proper glasses to drink out of which was amazing and wine poured from a bottle - not those little 25cl bottles. The entertainment was excellent where we had hand sets to operate the seat back tv screens. It meant we could choose what we watched and when and could even pause the film.

This contrasted with our last flight to Barbados which was on Thomas Cook this last March, also Premium. The plane was obviously quite old and the leather on the seats was looking the worse for wear. The food wasn't as good as Thomson and the entertainment was dire. All films and tv programmes were on some sort of loop so you couldn't choose when you started to watch a film. If we do another flycruise I will ask to have seats on a Thomson First Choice plane if they are available.

hi Annie,
think we had the opposite of you, really great comfy leather seats in premium thomas cook, with great service,
but opposite in premium with thomson, my son was split up from his partner,
none of us had the food we ordered as they had run out of chicken dishes, the drink we ordered never came, as they had run out o;f that too, and were told they would go to the ecomony to stock up, so would we mind waiting a while ??? never did get it, and they never came back. and seats not that comfortable,..we had family sitting in ecomony, and they definatley faired better than us..
...i guess alot has to do with the plane as well that is being used.

this time, for the above reasons, and not knowing if we would get a tc flight, we booked ecomony.

Also want to say a huge thankyou Annie for the reply you gave to my post regarding booking seats, few weeks ago, ....i took your advice, and was able to book the seats we wanted. so THANKYOU x
#8
South Yorkshire UK
4,006 Posts
Joined Mar 2008
Originally posted by kevinyork
Our Thomson flight out to meet Ventura last Dec was fine in terms of seat pitch, free drinks, entertainment and service. However we were late out and back (3 hours out, 6 hours back) and looking at others' reviews for last winter I was dissapointed how many times people reported their flight to be late.
Did they keep you on the ship for the length of the delay on your return journey kevinyork?
#9
Alderney Channel Islands
445 Posts
Joined Jun 2010
Originally posted by u2cruiser
Did they keep you on the ship for the length of the delay on your return journey kevinyork?
They keep you on the ship if there are any delays.

We flew premium last year on Thomas Cook and booked again this year.
Great service.
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Dean

Arcadia March 2008 T/A Eastbound
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#10
Essex UK
1,529 Posts
Joined Jan 2011
When we flew to Barbados with Thomas Cook last time it was the worst and most uncomfortable flight we've ever experienced, same on the return flight too. And now we're faced with the same again this time unfortunately but I don't think there's any choice. Our flight out is on 9th December and we're dreading it but will keep the destination in mind to keep our spirits up!
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#11
North West, England
345 Posts
Joined Jan 2010
It annoys me that there isn't a cruise only price with P&O... I have 1000s of BA and Virgin airmiles but something in my soul stops me paying for flight twice... I'm really worried about the flights as I am too used to flying business...

Ho hum

BnBx
#12
Gower Peninsula, Wales
2,708 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
Originally posted by blitznbobs
It annoys me that there isn't a cruise only price with P&O... I have 1000s of BA and Virgin airmiles but something in my soul stops me paying for flight twice... I'm really worried about the flights as I am too used to flying business...

Ho hum

BnBx
Then you will struggle I fear. We won't fly with the P&O charters, preferring to bite the bullet and buy a seat that enables us to travel in comfort.

If you have a lot of air miles have you considered a reward flight? We did just that in March.
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Gill
QE - May 2018
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#13
Wales
629 Posts
Joined Jan 2011
Originally posted by Essexlass2
When we flew to Barbados with Thomas Cook last time it was the worst and most uncomfortable flight we've ever experienced, same on the return flight too. And now we're faced with the same again this time unfortunately but I don't think there's any choice. Our flight out is on 9th December and we're dreading it but will keep the destination in mind to keep our spirits up!
Could you give reasons why you felt like this?
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#14
York
3,998 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Originally posted by u2cruiser
Did they keep you on the ship for the length of the delay on your return journey kevinyork?
Yes kept on the ship waiting for an update to appear on the screens around the atrium.
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Cruises planned:
Oasis of the seas -Feb 2017 B2B with
Oasis of the seas -March 2017 I
Celebrity Eclipse -British Isles, June 17
Independence Of The Seas, Med, Sep 17

Cruises to date:
Celebrity Eclipse - Canary Islands Sep 2016
Celebrity Eclipse - Baltics May 2016
Anthem Of The Seas- Canary Islands Sep 2015
Celebrity Eclipse - Iceland & Norway June 2015
P&O Britannia- Canary Islands March 2015
Celebrity Eclipse - Canary Islands Oct 2014
Celebrity Eclipse - Med May 2014
Celebrity Eclipse - Iceland & Fjords July 2013
Adventure of the seas Transatlantic April 2013
P&O Azura -Baltics May 2012
P&O Ventura -Caribbean Jan 2012
P&O Ventura -Med April 2011
P&O Ventura -Caribbean Dec 2010
P&O Azura -Med May 2010
Independence of the Seas -Med April 2009
#15
Gower Peninsula, Wales
2,708 Posts
Joined Jan 2006
Originally posted by kevinyork
Yes kept on the ship waiting for an update to appear on the screens around the atrium.
Generally speaking, passengers are only kept on the ship if the arriving aircraft they are due to return on hasn't arrived. If it has, and has for example a technical problem, passengers are often off loaded and left to wait it out at the airport - and I know that, as it has happened to us - twice!

It was absolutely hideous!
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Gill
QE - May 2018
QV - August 2017
QV - December 2017
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#16
Worthing, West Sussex
46 Posts
Joined Sep 2010
Thank you to everyone who has responded to my post yesterday - quite a mixed bag - nothing we can do now but hope that ours is a good experience!

Just have to keep in mind that once we get to Barbados we will be going on a holiday of a lifetime!

Thanks again everyone - happy cruisin'
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#17
Carlisle
143 Posts
Joined Oct 2010
Flew with Thomson (actually a First Choice liveried plane) from Manchester to Barbados last year. Didn't upgrade to Premium and were quite satisfied with the service, leg room that was available. Have seen comments elsewhere about the poor drinks service on return flights. This we were told by the Stewardess on the Outbound flight is because P&O specify what they carry onboard and it isn't refreshed on the turn round.
Have previously upgraded with Thomson when flying to Mexico (not a cruise) and whilst had no complaints, I think I'd rather spend the price of the upgrade elsewhere, but that is purely a personnal opinion.
Flying with TC from Gatwick this year to join Ventura so would be interested in any comments/advice you have in those areas,
#18
South of England
193 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
We are flying Thomson Premium (all part of the total price of the cruise) in January to Barbados. We have flown Thomson/First Choice many times and only had problems on the way back from Egypt but, then again, flying from Sharm always has problems (so chaotic)!!

Earlier this year we flew longhaul to/from Maldives with Thomson - economy class. The seats were comfy'ish. I am 5ft 10 and had plenty of legroom. One of the only differences was that in Premium you get all the entertainment included, in economy you pay for an upgrade to certain films and "on demand" etc. Also, I don't think the entertainment in economy is "on demand" so you might miss the beginning of the film. I think that depends on the plane you go on.

On the Maldives flight and one of the Sharm flights (both return flights) they ran out of full fat coke and I HATE diet drinks! So I had to settle for a beer!

Waiting for flights to appear online to book for January ... like to book 2's if possible. I hate sitting by the window (one of the Sharm flights made me so claustrophobic)
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Karen xx




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#19
416 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
Originally posted by Essexlass2
When we flew to Barbados with Thomas Cook last time it was the worst and most uncomfortable flight we've ever experienced, same on the return flight too. And now we're faced with the same again this time unfortunately but I don't think there's any choice. Our flight out is on 9th December and we're dreading it but will keep the destination in mind to keep our spirits up!
Just wondered what you meant by worst and most uncomfortable ? Do you think you should get more leg room in economy, as I dont think you get any bigger than 33 inch do you ?
#20
Bristol, UK
1,296 Posts
Joined Apr 2008
I am a slim 20stone bloke 6'1" tall and found the seats had plenty of legroom and with the seat layout it was easy for me to sit on the corridor side. Nor up to clubclass but adequately comfortable. I don't sleep on aircraft either so the 7 or so hours was ok. Flying is a necessary evil IMO to get to the cruise area.
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Geoff & Sally
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