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Southend-2

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Old 17th Sep 2017, 17:53
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Southend-2

This is a very positive view of SEN from a travel article on the Sun "newspaper" website:

"FROM Roman Emperors to Hollywood movie stars, Lake Como has a long history as a hangout for the rich and famous. So, as I was on my way to Italy’s most fashionable holiday hotspot, it was only natural I received a VIP airport experience. I left my motorbike in front of the terminal, waltzed through security without queuing then had a fancy meal while waiting for my flight.
No, George Clooney hadn’t invited me to his lakeside villa on a private jet — I was just another passenger at Southend Airport, where even economy-class customers feel like a million dollars.
Recently rated the best airport serving the capital by Which? Southend makes flying such a doddle that you’ll never want to set foot in a full-size airport again. With a customer rating of 84 per cent — 16 per cent more than any airport in London — the short-haul terminal feels like something from the golden age of air travel.
Security staff are plentiful and friendly, you can park within walking distance of the check-in desk or catch a 45-minute train from central London, and this year saw the opening of Bourgee Bites-Bar-Luxe Lounge, a classy joint adding glamour to the tiny airport. Billed as “affordable luxury”, the bar opens from 4am every day, serving a range of cocktails, champagne, brunch and mouth-watering teaser-style dishes. Don’t board your flight before scoffing an order of maple-and-sesame beef bits with soy-and-lime dipping sauce.
It was two and a half hours to Milan….."


As LTNman would no doubt be quick to point out, such an excellent experience is unlikely to continue if SEN becomes much busier, but at the moment all seems well.
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Old 18th Sep 2017, 18:37
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Praise for Southend

Reference the Sun article:

Parking next to the terminal and walking in just a couple of minutes: Tick!

Good security experience: I've posted here before that I've been stopped everytime I've gone through, either for carrying a BlackBerry or "we're choosing you at random Sir". So I can't tick that box. Others however most probably can. I'm a white, middle aged, middle class male travelling on business and therefore a prime target for suspicious security employees looking out for passenger safety.

Bourgees: please, did the hack eat there? No table service, only queueing at the bar to be met with insolent indifference by the pre-adolescent staff. McDonald's train their staff better. And then there is the small (or huge, depending on which way you look at it) matter of the pricing of the food and drinks.

45 minutes from Central London:It simply isn't. Get a train from SEN Airport to Stratford (not central London but doesn't matter) and you won't do it in 45 mins. Simply a tired hack rehashing false advertising by the airport.

I don't read The Sun but millions do. I understand the article was written for those "millions" but even so, what happened to journalistic integrity?
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Old 18th Sep 2017, 18:53
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Originally Posted by asdf1234 View Post
Reference the Sun article:

Parking next to the terminal and walking in just a couple of minutes: Tick!

Good security experience: I've posted here before that I've been stopped everytime I've gone through, either for carrying a BlackBerry or "we're choosing you at random Sir". So I can't tick that box. Others however most probably can. I'm a white, middle aged, middle class male travelling on business and therefore a prime target for suspicious security employees looking out for passenger safety.

Bourgees: please, did the hack eat there? No table service, only queueing at the bar to be met with insolent indifference by the pre-adolescent staff. McDonald's train their staff better. And then there is the small (or huge, depending on which way you look at it) matter of the pricing of the food and drinks.

45 minutes from Central London:It simply isn't. Get a train from SEN Airport to Stratford (not central London but doesn't matter) and you won't do it in 45 mins. Simply a tired hack rehashing false advertising by the airport.

I don't read The Sun but millions do. I understand the article was written for those "millions" but even so, what happened to journalistic integrity?
And just to show how inaccurate the Sun journo was with his 45 minutes to central London here is a quote from the train operator's website:

Greater Anglia is the rail provider within East Anglia and runs the train service between Southend Airport and Stratford or London Liverpool Street.

Why choose the train from Southend Airport?
Fast: Central London in 55 minutes, Stratford in 45 minutes

So let's read that again.

CENTRAL LONDON IN 55 MINUTES

That's a fact from the operator. I submit that they rarely do it in 55 mins but why does a Sun journalist chose to ignore the operator's own declaration on the travel time and reduce it to 45mins?

One might argue that the airport management and the Sun journo had shared a glass of wine or two - but not me.
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Old 18th Sep 2017, 19:58
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You would think that after years of praise from passengers and press alike that Southend would be somewhat busier than it is. There still seems to be a reluctance from passengers and airlines to make that leap of faith but as already stated when that day comes the Southend experience could well get a little tarnished. Controlled growth is the way to go but no airport is going to turn an airline away just to give its passengers a better experience.
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Old 18th Sep 2017, 21:58
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The Southend PR chap/ess is doing their job well these days =b

I mean if they wanted to be super accurate they could factor in plane to station time + average waiting time for a train, adjust for expected delays, and estimated tube travel from Liverpool St (who wants to be there, right?) to Buck House or something. And for good measure they could point out that of course Southend is as London as fly in the air.

But... that's not what a PR person is there for, is it? They're there to make the airport look good, come up with facts for growth that's 300%, ... yes?
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Old 18th Sep 2017, 22:07
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Stratford is actually a destination nowadays though....OK it's not for everyone but as the Royal Academy and whatever else plus new hotels open up in the coming years the appeal will only grow.

The previous Mayor of London got Zone 2 moved to make Stratford more 'central'.
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 06:01
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asdf123

Do you really expect a tabloid newspaper story to be accurate? You expect "journalistic integrity" from the Sun!

As a matter of fact the train journey time to Stratford averages out at 46 minutes and that to Liverpool Street at 56 minutes. I don't quite understand you saying that "... you won't do it in 45 minutes." Many times you'll do it in that or less. I'm travelling by train to SEN this morning and returning tomorrow afternoon so I'll make a note of the actual times taken and report back.

I've never been stopped at security so maybe I'm just lucky and I've only once or twice seen anyone else stopped, Mind you it's so fast through there that you rarely have the time to notice what is happening to other passengers.

I find Bourgees OK and the staff have been pleasant enough to me. Yes, its a food bar but there is plenty of seating right in front of it. As far as the cost is concerned I don't expect cheap at any airport and am not usually disappointed in that assumption.

Last edited by Expressflight; 19th Sep 2017 at 06:20.
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 08:14
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So tomorrow sees Easyjet release its flight schedule until 24th June 2018.

4th based aircraft anyone?
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 08:14
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Originally Posted by LTNman View Post
You would think that after years of praise from passengers and press alike that Southend would be somewhat busier than it is.
I think the “lovely airport to travel through” argument is greatly overstated. Luton, after all, is highly successful despite it’s appalling reputation. What passengers generally want are competitive fares, convenient flight times and frequency, and it’s surprising (or perhaps not) what they’ll put up with.
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 08:53
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LTN has an appalling reputation, STN is trying hard to catch up with them, yet they keep growing at levels that at times seem staggering. Personally, I think it's just down to the fact that operators see those airports as having a much greater chance of success for their own expansion plans than SEN, which will be regarded as being a higher risk for limited return.

But none of the above means that the airport should abandon its efforts in trying to be a cut above the rest, nor should they be modest about their achievements. But unfortunately, all the pluses have failed to bring the growth that seems to come all so easily elsewhere.

I still think there's hope.
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 10:57
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As a matter of fact the train journey time to Stratford averages out at 46 minutes and that to Liverpool Street at 56 minutes. I don't quite understand you saying that "... you won't do it in 45 minutes." Many times you'll do it in that or less. I'm travelling by train to SEN this morning and returning tomorrow afternoon so I'll make a note of the actual times taken and report back.
Let's hope you weren't on this morning's 10:55 departure from the airport which got to Stratford in 51 minutes and just got into Liverpool Street in 60 minutes.

No more train stories from me - the mods have shown their dislike of trains on here previously.
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 15:25
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Trains are intrinsically linked to airports with rail links. A couple of weeks ago due to a semi fast cancellation I had a Southend type experience to London with a train that stopped at every station. Total journey time was around 43 minutes but it felt like it took all day.
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 15:31
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Don't know what's happening this afternoon, but the 14:50 Budapest pushed/started on time and taxied to the end of 05 and lined up. The pilot was "not quite ready" and asked for a couple of minutes and then another couple of minutes. Still not ready and told to vacate runway (as there was an aircraft on the approach) and park in stand 6. To the best of my knowledge still there.

The extension to car park 2 is still fenced off but looks to be ready for use.

There is now further work taking place at two points between the Business Jet terminal and Eastwoodbury Crescent. Don't know what's happening there but some paving is being removed near the terminal and some hard standing being dug up near the exit to Eastwoodbury Crescent. They sure are spending some money on the place!

LTNman
As has been pointed out before, no trains from SEN stop at all stations - most off peaks are non-stop from Shenfield to Stratford with one an hour calling additionally at Romford. That means that most of them miss 11 stations

Last edited by SEN Observer; 19th Sep 2017 at 15:37. Reason: Additional information
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 15:43
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Except on Sundays when they only miss 6. Forgot about that!!
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Old 19th Sep 2017, 17:47
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I wondered if SEN would do something in light of FR's mess up, and here it is - London Southend airport is offering free flights to Ryanair passengers whose flights have been cancelled - but there's a catch - Mirror Online
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Old 20th Sep 2017, 11:33
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With easyjet releasing flights until 28 June 2018 I take it that there was no merit in the rumour about a 4th based aircraft?
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Old 20th Sep 2017, 11:46
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You may be right LTNman, but new routes commencing 2018 from anywhere have not yet been announced (As far as I know).
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Old 20th Sep 2017, 11:51
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In a possible dilution of traffic for the proposed Powdair service,Swiss have added further service from LHR...their weekly schedule will now run thru both Jan & Feb 18..
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Old 20th Sep 2017, 12:21
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The schedule suggests no 4th aircraft, no new routes as there are no usable gaps and an overall reduction in flights as PMI is back to using a SEN frame. The only thing that may give faint hope to some is that there are some quite big gaps between flights, e.g. 2h15 on a Thursday and 1h45 on a Saturday.
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Old 20th Sep 2017, 12:32
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& with credit to a poster on the STN thread STN retains 7 EZY a/c with this release....
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