FNC [today’s flight returned to LHR]

Old Oct 18, 20, 1:01 pm
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FNC [today’s flight returned to LHR]

Hello,
So half way there today flight came back to Heathrow due to strong winds and airport closed.
Our little boys were super sad to land at Heathrow but that's life and not the point.
According to FNC website many flights landed in the afternoon and according to our local friends other diverted flights when to Porto Santo.
So why is BA fight the only one going back to origin (and us stuck in an hotel at Heathrow hoping we can fly again tomorrow)?
Thanks!
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Old Oct 18, 20, 1:20 pm
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Originally Posted by Sophoclefr View Post
Hello,
So half way there today flight came back to Heathrow due to strong winds and airport closed.
Our little boys were super sad to land at Heathrow but that's life and not the point.
According to FNC website many flights landed in the afternoon and according to our local friends other diverted flights when to Porto Santo.
So why is BA fight the only one going back to origin (and us stuck in an hotel at Heathrow hoping we can fly again tomorrow)?
Thanks!
Sounds frustrating but think potentially could’ve been the best option available? Could’ve been a combination of congestion at Porto Santo; both at the airport and also in the event of cancellation with the hotel situation. Suspect the other alternative would’ve been Lisbon/Faro/Canaries but of course then the issue of quarantine.

Fingers crossed for tomorrow!
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Old Oct 18, 20, 1:29 pm
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Indeed the Jet2 flight from Leeds to FNC diverted to Faro which means all on board will need to self isolate for 2 weeks from today, upon return to the UK. A Transavia flight from OPO to FNC returned to OPO.

That said, I suspect BA would rather not have crew nightstopping in unexpected locations at the moment, it's just easier for all concerned to come back to London, even if you did get to the other side of OPO before returning to the UK. There weren't many flights affected, the only other service due to arrive between midday and 4pm was a SAS service, which was cancelled for other reasons.
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Old Oct 18, 20, 3:01 pm
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Unless the jet2 continued to FNC later without taking any more people on board at Faro.
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Old Oct 18, 20, 3:34 pm
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Originally Posted by nufnuf77 View Post
Unless the jet2 continued to FNC later without taking any more people on board at Faro.
Totally off topic, but their aircraft, having made an attempt at landing in Funchal, went on to Faro, arrival there after five and a half of flying, staying in Faro an hour and then returned to Yorkshire, something like 8 hours of flying on a 737. If the passengers were taken back to LBA and no-one got on board at FAO, then they wouldn't need to isolate, but I don't think that would have cheered them up by very much.
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Old Oct 18, 20, 3:56 pm
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Conditions at Funchal turn in flash. We've twice been diverted to Porto Santo after rocky attempts at landing, waited things out for an hour and then successfully re-tried FNC.
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Old Oct 18, 20, 4:01 pm
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
Indeed the Jet2 flight from Leeds to FNC diverted to Faro which means all on board will need to self isolate for 2 weeks from today, upon return to the UK. A Transavia flight from OPO to FNC returned to OPO.

That said, I suspect BA would rather not have crew nightstopping in unexpected locations at the moment, it's just easier for all concerned to come back to London, even if you did get to the other side of OPO before returning to the UK. There weren't many flights affected, the only other service due to arrive between midday and 4pm was a SAS service, which was cancelled for other reasons.
returned to Leeds Bradford and trying again tomorrow
https://www.thetelegraphandargus.co....-madeira-faro/
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Old Oct 18, 20, 4:07 pm
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Porto Santo can only take so many aircraft (and then potentially handle the offload and accommodation of multiple passengers for the night).

Once the decision is made to go to Porto Santo, I’d imagine that the aircraft can then only carry enough fuel that puts it below Max landing weight for FNC. ie, it cannot carry enough fuel to depart Porto Santo, hold and have a go at FNC then fly back to London. If the aircraft departs Porto Santo with a genuine attempt for FNC then it can only have limited fuel on board, meaning, if it still cannot land in FNC then it’ll end up diverting to FAO, maybe TFS, LIS, OPO for more fuel to get back to London, and then probably the crew will run out of hours.

At a very rough guess, to go FNC-LHR, let’s say you’d need 15T. To go PXO-FNC (carrying diversion fuel for FAO/LIS/TFS) - LHR you’d probably need 18T. Therefore leaving PXO and attempting FNC with c18T of fuel on board will have the aircraft way over maximum landing weight.

Last edited by surryson; Oct 18, 20 at 4:14 pm
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Old Oct 18, 20, 4:08 pm
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Originally Posted by bfc2dabone View Post
returned to Leeds Bradford and trying again tomorrow
https://www.thetelegraphandargus.co....-madeira-faro/
Given the route and the airline, I'd imagine the passengers would be fairly elderly, so I'm wondering how they all did their unexpected Passenger Locator Forms on arrival in Leeds. I guess the Border Force let them off that requirement. Still, the fairly robust comments section in that article shows what Flyertalk could look like if run by Yorkshire folk!
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Old Oct 18, 20, 4:35 pm
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
Given the route and the airline, I'd imagine the passengers would be fairly elderly,...
Regardless of airline it is a route which attracts the elderly. I was on a BA flight there once where I was the youngest in club and a lady in 1A was doing crochet! I was told after that it’s known as a route for newly weds and nearly deads.

Last edited by KARFA; Oct 18, 20 at 4:41 pm
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Old Oct 18, 20, 4:38 pm
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
Given the route and the airline, I'd imagine the passengers would be fairly elderly, so I'm wondering how they all did their unexpected Passenger Locator Forms on arrival in Leeds. I guess the Border Force let them off that requirement. Still, the fairly robust comments section in that article shows what Flyertalk could look like if run by Yorkshire folk!
I doubt they'd just be let off, forms can be filled out at UK Border if necessary, should the one you fill out online be checked and found to contain errors, they can make you do another one on the spot.

Doubt it'd be a very nice atmosphere after that 'ordeal' though, considering it takes the best part of 15 minutes to fill out in the first place. Still, we choose to travel through these times, it is what it is. I would always have expected any airline to go wherever is operationally more convenient, rather than what saves passengers having to quarantine, so I suppose people should be thankful for small mercies.
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Old Oct 18, 20, 4:42 pm
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Originally Posted by KARFA View Post
Regardless of airline it is a route which attracts the elderly. I was on a BA flight there once where I was the youngest in club and a lady in 1A was doing crochet! I was told after that it’s know as a route for newly weds and nearly deads.
This amused me.

We've been looking at potential destinations for an early holiday next year (we ordinarily go to the Canaries). There's a RIU Palace in Madeira (the high end of the RIU chain), The main bar looks like a visitors room in an old folks home, it's well reviewed too. I'll say no more.
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Old Oct 18, 20, 8:02 pm
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Originally Posted by Sophoclefr View Post
Hello,
So half way there today flight came back to Heathrow due to strong winds and airport closed.
Our little boys were super sad to land at Heathrow but that's life and not the point.
According to FNC website many flights landed in the afternoon and according to our local friends other diverted flights when to Porto Santo.
So why is BA fight the only one going back to origin (and us stuck in an hotel at Heathrow hoping we can fly again tomorrow)?
Thanks!
Whilst in flight the crew received information that the forecast weather at FNC had deteriorated to a point where it would be to windy for the aircraft to safely land and conditions were not expected to improve for a few hours meaning the aircraft would need to divert. The aircraft was just to the west of OPO when it turned back to LHR so it could have easily of diverted to FAO, LIS or OPO for fuel and continue to FNC when the weather improved and pre-COVID that would have been what would have happened. I think the decision was likely taken to not do that because there was a chance the crew could have gone out of hours waiting for the weather to improve which would have resulted in the passengers and crew having to nightstop which would trigger the 14 day quarantine rule.
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Old Oct 19, 20, 12:31 am
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Originally Posted by KARFA View Post
Regardless of airline it is a route which attracts the elderly. I was on a BA flight there once where I was the youngest in club and a lady in 1A was doing crochet! I was told after that it’s known as a route for newly weds and nearly deads.
This and C-W-S comment does make be a little worried about my back up trip in Dec hopefully something can be sorted out with the Canaries so I can stick to plan A
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Old Oct 19, 20, 3:26 am
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I took 3 days to get to FNC once. We were only allowed to land in a 100 series B727, by day, on a dry runway, when the wind was within the limits on the wind chart. Just as we began our approach it started raining, causing a diversion to Porto Santo.
After sitting around for the rest of the day we diverted back to FAO for the night. Next day just as we arrived the wind went out of limits,so off we went to Porto Santo, then LIS for the night.
There was a little grumbling from the passengers, but we did flight deck tours and cheered them up as best as possible.
Fortunately we got in on day 3, as the Captain was moving house the next day, and I was on my 7th day of duty. CAA regulation no flying on day 8.
The returning passengers were rather glad to get home as well.
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