On Friday, I flew out of Gatwick on a 21.45 flight, bound (ultimately) for Auckland, New Zealand.
Nearly 28 hours later, with a stopover in Dubai and a refueling stop in Melbourne, I arrived in NZ on Sunday lunchtime.
I have done this journey before with Malaysian Airlines but flew via Kuala Lumpur and stopped there for a 3 day visit. I also did that trip on my own whereas I was with my parents this time.Here’s a real-time look at how I spent those 28 hours…
I haven’t flown with Emirates before and my first impression is that it is very nice; spacious, clean and comfortable. The flight is on an Airbus A380 and although I flew on this same type of plane last time I came to NZ, I am still amazed by the size of it.
This flight takes us from Gatwick to Dubai.I really like that the plane has 3 external cameras that you can view the feed from on your seat screen giving you great views of the plane when taking off and landing. My dad, with his headphones on, (very) loudly exclaims: “it’s like being on the Krypton Factor!” (Google the reference if you’re too young to get it!)
I settle in and start to watch the new live-action Beauty and the Beast (can’t believe I didn’t see this at the cinema, it’s amazing) and wait for some food and a drink.
I was at work today before heading to Gatwick so I’m already totally shattered. Time to blow up my neck pillow, put my sleepmask on and get some sleep.
I’ll be honest in that my tiredness has left these few hours a little blurry and I forgot to make notes! It was a combination of eating, sleeping and listening to music though.
We’re now in Dubai and have jumped 3 hours across time zones. Whilst it still feels like the middle of the night, I find with jetlag that it’s important to live correctly in the time zone – so although I’d love to find somewhere cosy to get a few more hours of sleep, I take a walk and get a coffee.
I have not enjoyed being at Dubai airport so am relieved when we can head to our gate to board the next flight.
I watch Fences (another great movie I didn’t get a chance to see at the cinema), have some lunch and follow the First Test via Twitter on my phone – thank goodness for free, in-flight wifi. The rugby is, after all, the reason I’m making this long trip to the otherside of the world.
Time for a bit more sleep
I watch Bridget Jones’s Baby and find myself actually laughing out loud quite a few times.
We cross the equator and are out above the Indian Ocean, below Indonesia (it’s now 20.10 in the current time-zone, 2.40pm in UK and 1.40am in Auckland).
We get a pizza snack.
I play some games on my iPad and listen to music on the seat screen.The entertainment system on Emirates is the best I’ve ever seen – so many channels and games and a really decent sized screen.
I travel in comfortable clothes anyway but still change into my pajama leggings and get some more sleep.
Now over Western Australia and it’s 00.40 in the current time-zone. Time for some breakfast and I watch Table 19, a sweet romcom with Anna Kendrick.
40 minutes left until arival into Melbourne so I listen to music and play games on my iPad.
After a transit through Melbourne for re-fueling, it’s the final leg of the trip and I eat my second breakfast of the day, fill out my landing card for NZ and start to watch Rogue One.
I finish watching the movie, change out of my pajamas (yes, I still had them on whilst we were off the plane in Melbourne) and we land for the third and final time of this trip.
It’s 12.30pm local time in Auckland and it’s a sunny, dry, winter’s day.
We disembark, head through security, pick up our luggage and clear customs in less than 30 minutes – must be a record!
Total travel time: 27h45
Total flights: 3 (only 2 planes though as we re-boarded the same plane in Melbourne)
Total distance travelled: 11,410 miles
I haven’t mentioned it but there was a lot of walking about the cabin to stretch and toilet breaks too. All in all, it wasn’t bad and the comfortable Emirates flights definitely help. I got really bored and fed up somewhere over the Indian Ocean, about halfway into the Dubai-Melbourne flight, but I just distracted myself with a movie and got over it.