After spending a few days in Dublin we flew Aer Lingus from Dublin to Birmingham. It is a short flight, about 65 minutes in total.

The ticket was about $60, but then you have to pay for most other items. To check a large case cost between $25 and $35 depending on the weight you require. To check your hand luggage at the gate is free but if you want to take your hand luggage on board it costs $10 and then you can choose a seat too. The front half of the plane (rows 1-15) was quite empty as there is a charge for those seats which did not go away within 24 hours of the flight.

The back half of the plane, rows 16-29 boarded first which makes you think the flight is full as almost all the seats are filled. Then the first 15 rows board and there is a random splattering of people that board but about three quarters of those seats were open.


Boarding process:

This was a fun loading process. We went down to gate 355 and there boarded the bus which took us to another terminal pod. There we lined up rows 16-29 first, showed our passports and then went outside.

a man standing on a concrete ledge in front of an airplane

It was another of those interesting boardings where you get to walk up to the plane and see it from close up. These are few and far between these days (I know Burbank and Bangkok still have boarding like this), it is fun to get the chance to look at the workings of the plane from below.

an airplane on the tarmac

We were quite early in the boarding process so I got this shot of the seats. This is an A320-200 with no business class section. Veronica is the flight attendant who handled the back half of the plane.

a group of people walking in an airplane

I had checked in late so we were in row 27 out of 29. Space is definitely a premium on this flight with arms pressed up against arms and the leg room rather tight.

I am 6ft 1 and you can see there was maybe one finger between my knees and the chair in front. The tightest I have ever been on a plane.

a paper in a seat

Normal light and air controls help with cooling when you are sitting so close.

a close up of a seat

The overhead bag cabinets seemed to be narrower than normal, some normal sized carry-on bags had to be put sideways as they were just too long to be put in wheels first.

a luggage in a shelf on an airplane


On board safety:

a poster of an airplane

A nicely laid out safety card with all instructions quite clear with creative pictures.

Good pictures of the safety vest instructions and how to open the doors too.

a book with pictures of people in the plane

There are extra pictures showing the door procedure and the life raft usage which are the first time I have seen them explained like this.

Nicely descriptive pictures which help explain more fully what to do in case of emergency.

a poster with instructions and pictures of an airplane


On board catering:

The service was great for an hour long flight.

a book cover with food on a plate

This booklet with Bia for catering on one side and Boutique for duty-free options on the other side was on board.

a magazine with a jar of cream

There are quite a few options available like sandwiches, toasties and various drinks and snacks.

a magazine with pictures of food and drinks

a magazine with images of food and drinks

I had a toasted ham and cheese sandwich (croque monsieur) and hot chocolate. The sandwich was surprisingly well done for a prepared sandwich with toasting done on board.

It was lightly toasted, tasted great and was pleasure to eat. The hot chocolate was just a degree cooler than perfect but it was a delicious taste. All in all a very successful and tasty meal service in less than 60 minutes.

a cup of coffee and a bag of food


Landing and leaving the plane:

While taxiing after landing at Birmingham we went past an Emirates A-380 among other planes so I presumed we would be parked at proper gates too.

But no, we left the plane by the back door and got to walk around the plane while walking to the gate.

a plane with people on the side

After boarding this way it was an extra bonus to have a second chance at seeing the plane.

an airplane on the tarmac

This was us traipsing along to the gate. An interesting experience.

a group of people walking outside a building



This was my first experience with Aer Lingus. The service and the attendants were really great, kind and helpful and good quality catering was provided by all.

The ticket was cheap but if you have to pay for the extras like a checked bag it quickly brings it up to a normal flight price.

Aer Lingus is great. The staff were all helpful from the first person we interacted with at Dublin airport to the last customs official at Birmingham.

Highly recommended, I will fly Aer Lingus anytime.