Kuwait Airways KU 621 from Kuwait (KWI) to Doha (DOH)

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KU 621 Kuwait Airways route (Source: https://www.radarbox.com/).

Early morning….Still at 03:14 hours….Situation at Kuwait International Airport was so peaceful with melodious instrumental music. At first glance I felt like I was on a side of Changi International Airport, which often played the same music.

The ticket which I got from Bahrain International Airport.

I took a seat at the very end of waiting chair, feeling a runny nose which still left little bit flu. Weirdest flu I’ve ever had in my life. It was mid-January, while COVID-19 began to spread a month before I was in Kuwait….I even interacted closely with Mainland Chinese citizens who were going to work to Oman a few days earlier at Dubai International Airport….Ah, I didn’t know.

Me and 12Go….True partners.

The loudspeaker started to call my flight number. “Half an hour late”, I thought in response. I started queuing to enter the “Blue Bird” airline. This was my second flight with it after a day before I rode it on Bahrain to Kuwait route.

Crossing the aerobridge.
Business Class.
Economy Class.

I kept peeking atTerminal 4 building. All I could imagine was how cold it was outside when I saw the dew covering every inch of the fuselage. While on the right, an Airbus A330 was doing the same process.

Seat 13K, strange seat numbering (ABC-HJK).
Alburaq inflight magazine accompanied me to fly for about 568 kilometers.

After going through 30 minutes of boarding process, finally, I slowly left Kuwait and left its beauty out of the air. Kuwait Airways flied away from its mainhub.

Sunny morning with beautiful city lights.
Goodbye Kuwait.

This was a Kuwait Airways flight which I rescheduled in the previous story. Tickets cost for about 21 Kuwait Dinar which I have prepared since 9 months before the flight. One other thing that became my fad when ordering plane tickets was trying different types of food. This time I ordered the Diabetic Meal (DBML), a low-sugar food with a little salt along with fruits and vegetables rich in fiber.

I wasn’t a diabetic but just curious to taste it.
Watching “Gemini Man” during the flight.
Cabin situation for about 1 hour 40 minutes flight.

Sunny mornings along the Persian Gulf provide a comfortable flight into Qatar’s airspace. Kuwait Airways began to lower and exposed Doha’s face which was bright with the colors of earth’s light.

Preparing to tread in Doha.

I arrived at Hamad International Airport at exactly 04:45 hours. A giant yellow teddy bear stuck to a power pole was the first thing I recorded in my minds about this airport. I wanted to see it right away.

Dropping passengers at the airport apron.

On a cold morning, ground crews didn’t provide an aerobridge for this flight. Passengers have to get off in airport apron and took turns boarding in an apron shuttle bus. As soon as I left the plane door, my body was mercilessly pierced by cold air. Moreover, I had to wait for the next bus to go to the arrival hall.

Airbus A320-214.
Arriving at the arrival hall in 12 minutes.

I kept walking in search of the yellow Teddy Bear when other passengers queued at the toilet or scrambled for luggage on the conveyor belt. I finally found it, although I couldn’t get close because the doll was in the departure hall area.

It was okay, I would take a picture with it when I would go to home.

Welcome to Doha!

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Kuwait Airways KU 614 from Bahrain to Kuwait

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KU 614 flight route (source: https://www.radarbox.com/)

Exactly on five in the morning I started to wash my body in the bathroom of Bahrain Plaza Hotel. That day, I would leave Bahrain and heading to Kuwait. After making sure all equipments wasn’t left behind, I went down to the first floor to hand over the key and headed to the nearest bus shelter. Not far, just three hundred meters at south of the hotel, right in front of Manama Cemetery.

Ten minutes later, the bus from MAN manufacturer numbered A1 arrived. Entering from its front door and tapping Go Card to pay the fare worth BHD 0.300, I drove to Bahrain International Airport for the next a hour.

Arriving at the airport on 07:45 hours, I went straight to 1st floor. Its check-in area wan’t better than the same counter owned by Halim Perdanakusuma Airport (second airport in Jakarta). The flight number which didn’t appeared yet on the Departure Hall LCD gave me time to exchange the remaining Bahraini Dinar (BHD). Apparently the money changer on the 1st floor didn’t want to accept small amount of Dinar, fortunately the Bahrain Financing Company (BFC) on the 0th floor was still willing to accept it.

On 9:30 hours, the check-in counter for Kuwait Airways flight KU 614 began to open. I briefly explained that I was going to Qatar with two non-connecting flights and would transit in Kuwait. The young male staff only once asked me about the Qatar Visa. “Qatar visa is free for Indonesian, Sir“, I answered to ending the conversation and he gave two tickets with the blue bird logo at once. The ticket itself I ordered on nine months before departure.

Kuwait Airways was the 27th airline which I boarded.

Smoothly passing through the immigration counter, I immediately headed to Gate 15 which was located in the corner of departure waiting hall with a narrow hallway which connects to the aerobridge. Waiting for boarding time, I continued to observe the flow of Gulf Air, a well-known airline belonging to the Kingdom of Bahrain.

Departure waiting room.

A little late, I started boarding on 11:51 hours. Couldn’t wait to experience the first time flying with Kuwait Airways, the airline belonging to the Kingdom of Kuwait.

Late for a hour.
Business Class.
Economy Class.

Immediately took a seat as stated on the boarding pass and preparing for a short flight of 420 km which would be covered in 1 hour 10 minutes.

Seat number 17A was where I sat.
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Alburaq inflight magazine.

It appeared that some of the airline’s aircrew were from the Philippines and some from African region. During the flight, I noticed that alcohol bottles weren’t visible on food trolley, it looked like the Kuwait Airways flight was an alcohol-free flight…..It was cool.

Watching “The Martian“.
The Low Fat Meal (LFML) menu which I ordered together with the ticket order.

That afternoon the air on the southwest bank of Persian Gulf was clear. This made my flight felt very smooth, with no turbulence at all. Nice flight.

Sunny weather in early January.
How did the feel, flying with Middle East people?.

DIn the last quarter of flight, the plane began to lower and revealed the land of Kuwait which looked arid and hot. I myself couldn’t wait to get to know Kuwait International Airport which was the main hub of Kuwait Airways.

Middle East mainland which typical sandy brown.
Busyness at Terminal 2 Expansion Project.
Kuwait city view.

The time was 13:35 hours. After the plane came to a perfect stop, I immediately left the fuselage for Transit Hall of Kuwait International Airport. I would patiently wait until four o’clock on the next morning to heading to Qatar.

A320-251N Neo Generation of Airbus

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Kuwait Airways KU 621 dari Kuwait (KWI) ke Doha (DOH)

<—-Kisah Sebelumnya

Rute Kuwait Airways KU 621 (Sumber: https://www.radarbox.com/).

Dini hari….Masih jam 03:14….Suasana di Kuwait International Airport begitu damai dengan alunan musik instrumental yang mendayu-dayu. Sepintas aku merasa berada di suatu sisi Changi International Airport yang kerap memainkan musik yang sama.

Tiket yang kudapat sejak di Bahrain International Airport.

Aku mengambil duduk di kursi tunggu paling ujung, merasakan pengar hidung yang masih menyisakan flu. Flu teraneh yang pernah kualami seumur hidup. Kala itu pertengahan Januari, sedangkan COVID-19 mulai merebak sebulan sebelum aku berada di Kuwait….Bahkan aku berinteraksi akrab dengan warga Tiongkok Daratan yang sedang berangkat kerja menuju Oman beberapa hari sebelumnya di Dubai International Airport….Ah entahlah!

Aku dan 12Go….Partner sejati.

Pengeras suara mulai memanggil nomor penerbanganku. “Terlambat setengah jam”, batinku merespon. Aku mulai mengantri untuk memasuki maskapai “Burung Biru” itu. Ini adalah penerbangan keduaku bersamanya setelah sehari sebelumnya aku menungganginya di rute Bahrain-Kuwait.

Melintasi aerobridge.
Business Class.
Economy Class.

Aku terus mengintip ke arah bangunan Terminal 4. Yang terbayang adalah betapa dinginnya di luar sana ketika melihat embun melapisi setiap inchi badan pesawat. Sementara di sebelah kanan tampak Airbus A330 sedang melakukan proses yang sama.

Bangku 13K, penamaan bangku yang aneh (ABC-HJK).
Alburaq inflight magazine menemaniku terbang sejauh 568 kilometer.

Setelah melalui 30 menit proses boarding, akhirnya perlahan aku meninggalkan Kuwait dan menyisakan keindahannya dari udara. Kuwait Airways terbang meninggalkan mainhub nya.

Pagi yang cerah dengan indahnya lampu kota.
Selamat tinggal Kuwait.

Inilah penerbangan Kuwait Airways yang ku reschedule pada kisah sebelumnya.  Tiket seharga Rp. 957.500 yang sudah kupersiapkan sejak 9 bulan sebelum penerbangan. Satu hal lain yang menjadi keisenganku saat memesan tiket pesawat adalah mencoba berbagai jenis makanan. Kali ini aku memesan Diabetic Meal (DBML),  makanan rendah gula dengan sedikit garam beserta buah dan sayur kaya serat.

Aku bukan penderita diabetes tetapi penasaran ingin merasakannya saja….Hahaha.
Menonton Gemini Man selama terbang.
Suasana kabin selama 1 jam 40 menit penerbangan.

Pagi yang cerah di sepanjang Teluk Persia memberikan penerbangan yang nyaman hingga memasuki wilayah udara Qatar. Kuwait Airways mulai merendah dan menyibak muka Doha yang terang dengan warna-warni cahaya bumi.

Bersiap menapak di Doha.

Aku tiba di Hamad International Airport tepat pukul 04:45. Pahatan Teddy Bear raksasa berwarna kuning yang tertancap di tiang listrik adalah hal pertama yang kurekam tentang bandara ini. Aku ingin segera melihatnya.

Merapat di parking lot.

Di pagi yang dingin, para ground crew tidak menyediakan aerobridge untuk penerbangan ini. Penumpang harus turun ke apron bandara dan bergiliran menaiki apron shuttle bus. Begitu keluar pintu pesawat, badan terasa ditusuk udara dingin tanpa ampun. Apalagi aku harus menunggu bus berikutnya demi menuju arrival hall.

Airbus A320-214.
Tiba di arrival hall dalam 12 menit.

Aku terus melangkah mencari Teddy Bear kuning itu ketika sebagian besar penumpang mengantri di toilet atau berebut bagasi di conveyor belt. Akhirnya aku menemukannya, walaupun tidak bisa mendekat karena boneka itu berada di area departure hall.

Tak mengapa, aku akan berfoto dengannya saat pulang nanti.

Selamat Datang Doha!

Kisah Selanjutnya—->

Kuwait Airways KU 614 dari Bahrain Ke Kuwait

<—-Kisah Sebelumnya

Rute penerbangan KU 614 (sumber: https://www.radarbox.com/)

Tepat jam lima pagi aku mulai mengguyur badan di kamar mandi Bahrain Plaza Hotel. Hari itu juga, aku akan meninggalkan Bahrain dan menuju ke Kuwait. Setelah memastikan segenap perlengkapan tak tertinggal, aku turun ke lantai satu untuk menyerahkan kunci dan menuju ke shelter bus terdekat. Tak jauh, cuma tiga ratus meter di selatan hotel, tepat di depan Manama Cemetery.

Sepuluh menit kemudian Bus asal pabrikan MAN bernomor A1 tiba. Masuk dari pintu depan dan men-tap Go Card untuk membayar tarif senilai Rp 12.000, aku meluncur menuju Bahrain International Airport selama satu jam ke depan.

Tiba di airport pada jam 07:45, aku langsung menuju ke lantai 1. Area check-in yang tak lebih elok dari konter yang sama milik Halim Perdanakusuma Airport. Nomor penerbangan yang tak kunjung muncul di LCD Departure Hall, membuatku memiliki waktu untuk menukar Bahraini Dinar (BHD) tersisa. Rupanya money changer di lantai 1 tak mau menerima Dinar dalam jumlah kecil, beruntung Bahrain Financing Company (BFC) di lantai 0 masih mau menerimanya.

Jam 9:30, konter check-in untuk penerbangan Kuwait Airways KU 614 mulai dibuka. Kujelaskan singkat bahwa aku akan menuju Qatar dengan dua non-connecting flight dan akan transit di Kuwait. Staff pria muda itu hanya sekali bertanya kepadaku perihal Visa Qatar. “Qatar visa is free for Indonesian, Sir”, jawabku mengakhiri percakapan dan dia memberikan dua tiket berlogo burung biru sekaligus. Tiker sendiri aku pesan 9 bulan sebelum keberangkatan.

Kuwait Airways adalah maskapai ke-27 yang kunaiki.

Melewati konter imigrasi dengan mulus, aku segera menuju ke Gate 15 yang berlokasi di pojok ruangan dengan selasar sempit yang terhubung ke jalur aerobridge. Menunggu waktu boarding, aku terus mengamati lalu-lalang Gulf Air, maskapai kenamaan milik Kerajaan Bahrain.

Ruang tunggu keberangkatan.

Sedikit terlambat, aku mulai boarding pada jam 11:51. Rasa tak sabar menggelayuti hati untuk merasakan pertama kalinya penerbangan Kuwait Airways, maskapai milik Kerajaan Kuwait.

Satu jam terlambat.
Business Class.
Economy Class.

Segera mengambil tempat duduk sesuai yang tertera di boarding pass dan mempersiapkan diri untuk penerbangan pendek sejauh 420 km yang akan ditempuh dalam waktu  1 jam 10 menit.

Bangku nomor 17A yang kududuki.
Terima kasih 12Go sudah menjadi Affiliate Parner untuk travelingpersecond.com.
Alburaq inflight magazine.

Tampak bahwa beberapa aircrew maskapai ini berkebangsaan Philippines dan beberapa dari kawasan Afrika. Selama penerbangan, kuperhatikan botol-botol minuman beralkohol tak nampak pada food trolley, sepertinya penerbangan Kuwait Airways adalah penerbangan bebas alkohol….. Keren.

Menonton “The Martian”.
Menu Low Fat Meal (LFML) yang kupesan bebarengan dengan pemesanan tiket.

Siang itu udara di tepian barat daya Teluk Persia tampak cerah. Hal ini menjadikan penerbanganku terasa sangat mulus, tanpa turbulensi sama sekali. Penerbangan yang menyenangkan.

Cuaca cerah di awal Januari.
Berasa gimana gitu, terbang bersama warga Timur Tengah.

Di seperempat terakhir mengudara, pesawat mulai merendah dan menampakkan daratan Kuwait yang tampak gersang dan panas. Aku sendiri tak sabar ingin segera mengenal Kuwait International Airport yang menjadi mainhub Kuwait Airways.

Daratan Timur tengah yang khas coklat berpasir.
Kesibukan di Terminal 2 Expansion Project.
Penampakan kota Kuwait.

Waktu menunjukkan jam 13:35. Selepas pesawat berhenti sempurna, aku segera meninggalkan badan pesawat menuju ke Transit Hall Kuwait International Airport. Aku akan bersabar menunggu hingga pukul empat pagi di keesokan harinya untuk menuju Qatar.

Airbus generasi Neo A320-251N

Kisah Selanjutnya—->