When visiting my best friend in the Isle of Man, I flew from Liverpool’s John Lennon Airport to Ronaldsway Airport with Flybe. In my experience, Flybe often have the best prices for flights from the UK to the Isle of Man and I have also flown with them from Birmingham Airport before too. My most recent flight cost £60 one way as I left it quite late to book, so to save money, I booked my return flight with EasyJet.
This flight is only actually twenty minutes long and the plane is a very small one, so it’s reasonable not to expect it to be amazing. Even the engines look different to all other planes I have been on. This particular plane was very cramped. In the window seats, the seat chassis takes up so much room that it impedes on the passenger legroom. I could not actually sit with my legs in front of me as there was no room for the foot nearest the window, so I had to sit slightly diagonal or rest my foot on the frame instead of the floor. The seats themselves were very narrow, so I found myself uncomfortably close to the stranger next to me. The seatbelts were very old and frayed and the windows were incredibly dirty. I really felt that the plane needed a refurbishment. There was also only one toilet on board the plane and as the flight was so short, I did not get an opportunity to find out if they had baby changing facilities.
The service however, is very good. On all the Flybe flights I’ve taken, the staff have all been polite and helpful, offering great customer service. On this occasion I was struggling to get my hand luggage into the luggage rack (despite it complying with Flybe’s 55 x 40 x 23 cabin baggage dimensions), so a friendly member of cabin crew moved some bags around and fit mine in for me. Despite the short length of time in the air, a full refreshment service still ran, as did the in flight shopping opportunities. Passengers are even given a Flybe chocolate on leaving the aircraft.
My flight was delayed by 50 minutes, but communication on the delay was very clear and many apologies were made. The flight itself was not the smoothest. There was a fair amount of turbulence and the landing was shaky to say the least and a little daunting as it wobbled side to side, heading into the runway. This however, was all due to very high winds, which had actually caused other planes to be blown off the runway, so all things considered, I think the pilots did a very good job. I’ve been on worse flights in good weather.
As far as short budget flights go, Flybe are great in the service department, and good value for money, but less so for comfort. I would fly with Flybe again, but not if there were more competitively priced airlines.