Flybe » Bombardier Q400 » User reviews
Seatplan rating 7.3
- Boarding 7.6
- Seat for sitting 7.8
- Seat for sleeping 0.5
- Service 7.9
- Entertainment 1.5
- Food & drink 4.8
- Punctuality 7.8
- Baggage 5.3
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Flew from Exeter to Newcastle (for leisure) but my journey started in Bath. I would normally take the Easyjet flight from Bristol but the schedule wasn't convenient. Alternatives were train from Bristol with CrossCountry, FlyBE from Southampton or BA from Heathrow. In the end, the Exeter fare of £56 o/w was the most competitive.
ARRIVING AT AIRPORT
I caught the 0857 train from Bath which is one of two trains a day that go direct to Exeter from Bath (fare £10.50, first class). Managed to make a very tight connection at Exeter St Davids to catch the bus to Exeter Airport. Arrived at airport at 1050 for a 1215 departure so that worked out well.
I had checked in on-line and only had hand baggage. I was about to go through Departures when I noticed a sign saying you had to register at Information if you wanted to use the Executive Lounge which I did having a Priority Pass. You need to do this in order to get the PIN to open the door as there is no staff in the lounge. Security was slow and I didn't enter the lounge until 1115.
Lounge is basic and is probably not worth it unless you only have a short time to wait or need to do a lot of work. Food & drink selection is ordinary and there is no view of interest from the lounge. I needed to send some emails but the wifi wasn't working. On exiting the lounge, I realised it was next to an upstairs bar in the Departures area which in some ways was better than the lounge as it had views.
Flight was called on time and boarding was quick.
The flight was half full. I hadn't paid to choose my seat and had been allocated a window seat which I don't like on the Q400 due to the curvature of the fuselage down by the feet which I find limiting. However, no-one else sat next to me and I was able to move to the aisle seat. We departed on time and on reaching cruising height, I decided to continue working on my emails on my laptop. This is unusual for me as I normally find in economy that there is not enough room to push the screen back far enough in order to see it given my height (I am over 6 feet). But I find the Q400 seats have just enough leg room to enable me to do that. Service was efficient and I bought a soft drink and sandwich for £5. Sandwich was reasonably tasty.
We arrived at Newcastle 20 minutes ahead of our scheduled time. I strongly suspect FlyBE are padding their timetables here and this is probably a normal occurrence.
Overall a simple but efficient flight and a journey that I would do again.
I was travelling from Leeds Bradford international airport to George Best Belfast City airport on Monday 15th April 2013 we got into the airport 45 minutes before the flight was meant to take off I was travelling with my mum who is part blind and had to travel with a guide dog.
We check In and waited for assistance to the plane once he came we got to the plane very quick but unfortunately flybe be had made an error in the bookings and had not booked the dog a seat. We got on the plane after 10 minutes later and left Leeds Bradford airport on time.
The seats were very nice to sit on but would have been very incompatible to sleep on but seen as the q 400 is a small plane made for short hall journeys there is really no need to sleep
Are flight only took 40 minutes so there was not much time for services but I got a drink and a sandwich and found it very relaxing
There was not much entertainment on the flight apart from some magazines but as it was only a short flight that did not concern me.
The baggage was ok but I have seen much meter from other airliners.
Over all I would say flybe are a very good company I have gone many ways over to Belfast including ferry but that can take 8 hours and is much more expensive flybe have a great safty record and I think it is one of the best budget airliners and would recommend it
I had booked "new economy" as this worked out cheaper for having luggage which one also gets to choose a seat. I arrived at Manchester Terminal 3 and for some reason the self service machines weren't working. I meandered through to check in where I had to wait whilst the staff chewed the fat about the previous customer.
Eventually I was called, the clerk was perfunctory in speech, boarding pass issued through security which was busy but moving.
The flight departed from gate 46 and when shown made my way there, it was evident that it not a full flight. We were called by row number and a stearn warning that if your bag didn't fit the guide "it will be taken from you and put in the hold". I was in row 5 so had to wait, when called I joined the queue a few people went through and then one guy had a problem with his boarding pass. One staff member was slouched watching whilst the woman checking boarding passes went to another desk and phoned for approval. The poor guy was clearly embarrased whilst others in the queue were asking why couldn't they get on.
Cabin crew gave a nice welcome and the usual greeting from the captain, we departed on time. The flight only had 24 people on and I was in 5A with loads of seats around me except someone sat in 5B who didn't seem interested in moving so I moved to 4A after 20 minutes. Cabin crew came around with duty free and refreshments.
Arrival in Jersey was 15 minutes early and baggage was on the belt within a few minutes of arriving.
Overall the flight was good, but the check in and gate process was very poor and not a good image.
I am a regular Flybe consumer and have flown with them from Norwich to Manchester many times and have overall had a very good experience with them.
I arrived an hour early for my flight from Norwich on Sunday 23rd to Manchester to be greeted at the desk by a check in member who informed me that the flight was to be delayed an hr and a half.
Unfortunately, this is maybe the third time in a year this has been the case, however norwich airport has a good pub in the departure lounge so that eases the dissapointment somewhat!
After almost two hours we were told via tannoy that it was technical problems with our aircraft but its ready for boarding. The staff were very apologetic and the pilot was also welcoming and sorry for the delay.
The seats on the B Q400 are ok. I am 6ft 4 so i'm not short but for the 45 min journey, it was comfortable enough. I am very familiar and comfortable with the aircraft however, and i assume due to the "technical issue", the take off from norwich was extremely loud and there was severe vibration and buzzing coming from all around
The staff remained pleasant and happy to help throughout the flight despite them being on shift for an extra two hours, hopefully the get overtime, or they should for how polite they were.
I would happily continue flying with flybe and would happily remain loyal to the company if a competition airline would fly the route, they just need to focus on punctuality a tad more.
It's also worth mentioning, it is very cheap. The flight are actually not a lot more than a few quid, its just airport tax that hikes the price up so they are extremely good value. The aircraft is usually very well kept and the look inside is modern.
Overall, a very good low cost airline.
This review refers to a day return Glasgow - Belfast. This is a 30 minute hop so expectations are minimal - a reliable bus service is what is required!!
Arrived in plenty of time for the 08.35 flight to see "Next announcement at 08.30" on the screen - ominous to say the least. Went to the gate and asked the question...Flybe HQ had switched the Belfast aircraft to Birmingham as that aircraft had gone technical - higher load factor to Birmingham, maybe? However, we could watch engineers busy on an aircraft right by the gate and soon saw a thumbs up to the flight deck.
Boarding, therefore, was only 30 minutes late and a very short flight time meant arrival only 15 minutes behind schedule. The plane was only about 50% full so we were able to move seats etc for extra space.
In spite of the short flight, cabin crew managed to come round with snacks, sandwiches, hot drinks and gift items, all for sale, although up-take was minimal. George Best International is a great place to arrive for city meetings so was at my destination in no time.
The return was routine - we pushed back 5 minutes early with only about 30% of seats occupied. The Q400 is fine in calm weather - I always dread this crossing when the wind is up as I am green by the time we land. Luckily, both flights today were very smooth. Arrival in Glasgow was a little early and I was away in my car within 10 minutes of landing.
All in all, a good commuter service but there is always a sense of the uncertain because of flybe's poor reputation for reliability......
Late afternoon flight from Brussels to Manchester.
A difficult on-line check in procedure that seems designed around extracting money rather than offering a check in service. I gave up and decided to check-in at the airport. The ground handling service is supplied by Aviapartner and was pleasant enough, I was offered a couple of seat choices.
Some five minutes before departure there was an announcement that the flight was delayed for "Technical Reasons" and we were on board twenty minutes late.
The Q400 with its 2/2 set up is small but fine for a short flight (90 minutes). A few drinks and snacks were offered but they were expensive so most people declined. As might be expected there was no IFE but the FlyBe magazine was interesting enough.
The crew did what they could to make up time but we landed in Manchester 10 minutes late.
Luggage came through after a short delay and we were in a taxi ten minutes after landing. The FlyBe rules regarding luggage seem designed to try and catch people out and make them pay more however they were not in any way enforced at check in which I suppose is some sort of compensation.
In conclusion a reasonable service at a cheap price, the seats are somewhat cramped (they claim 30" pitch but it feels smaller) and any extras (luggage, food drink) are expensive as we have come to expect with budget airlines but as has been said before, "you get what you pay for".
It was a bit bumpy on the way up but that wasn't the aircrafts fault. all in all, it was a very good flight!
LBA to LGW. Definitely the most modern and quietest turbo prop I have been on although when you sit next to the wing the vibrations can be quite severe and noisy but clean, modern cabin with good legroom and OK service.
I have flown on one of these aircraft several times and on two occasions have been allocated a seat exactly in line with the propellers.
The noise and vibration level is horrendous and in my book these seats are to be avoided at all costs on all but the shortest flight. Other seats are better from the point of view of noise and vibration, but not a lot.
If these aircraft are 'state of the art' then give me a jet every time. OK for an hour but putting this aircraft on longer flights (Milan) is not really acceptable.
Flew with Flybe from Edinburgh to Cardiff last April. Their Bombardier Q400 series plane was three quarters full. The UK airports recently opened just the day before and I assumed other travelers were jittery and decided to forgo their travel plans.
Check in was fast. The short flight was surprisingly smooth, though and I saw passengers looking nervously outside periodically, as if they are concerned about the ashfalls. As usual for low cost airlines food on board was for sale.
Prices were ok compared to other UK airlines. Flight crew very attentive. Seat pitch was ok and good legroom. The Q400's lived up to their reputation as they're a bit quieter than other turboprops.
Overall product is a bit better than other low cost like Easyjet and Ryanair. Flight arrived 10 minutes ahead of schedule.