This post is written by Katie, about her travel to Europe for IROS 2015.
I just arrived at AUS early and visited the Admirals Club. It was actually rather large, and I sat in the business center and enjoyed some trail mix and veggies.
After walking from gate 13 (lounge) to gate 2 (departure), I waited for our delayed departure. I boarded at the beginning of the One World status group, but there were already a number of people on board. This mattered to me because I was taking pictures and notes for a potential flight review!
I had found out when I checked in my bags that my row was no longer empty (and that the plane was very full). A larger couple, that reminded me a lot of my parents when I was in high school sat next to me. They were friendly enough, and even with them in my row, I was surprised that I was not too cramped in my window seat.
Dinner service was later than I expected, and service took a very long time (I was able to finish the movie When We Were Young before dinner service was completed). The actual dinner was good though (although the roll was cold, the chicken was dry, and the sauce on the chicken was a bit clumpy), as was the wine. The salad was crisp and fresh, with a very light dressing. The fluffy cream cup was a treat for desert as it was light but flavorful.
After dinner I used the bathroom and took some pictures before attempting to sleep. I also enjoyed an almost complete lunar eclipse! I did not get comfortable sleeping until after sunrise. I think the combination of the crowded row, big entertainment box at my feet (literally my shoes took up all of the under-seat space allocated for my seat), and somewhat uncomfortable seat led to the rough night.
Breakfast came in a cute little box and consisted of a croissant, jam, raisins, and a granola bar. The couple in my row was fast asleep until landing, and I did not want to wake them, so I missed the opportunity to get up and take pictures of the full plane in the light. 🙁
After de-planing I went through the now comfortable and familiar process of connecting at LHR. We arrived into Terminal 5 Concourse C. I found a window from which to take a nice shot of my British Airways 787, and then hurried to boarding pass check and security.
I ended up reaching gate A10a in Terminal 5 for my flight to Hamburg just 10 minutes before boarding ended. Security was terrible, as seemingly every other person in my line set off the metal detector.
We took a bus to the Airbus A319 and then slowly boarded. The plane was old (as evidenced by the overhead display consoles), but the seats were retrofitted. The plane was pretty full, but the seats were comfortable.
Once in Hamburg, I easily took the S-bahn (3.10€) straight from the airport to Hamburg Hauptbahnhof, and checked into the Generator Hostel Hamburg.