First Class Interiors. Friday , May 18th , 2018 - 14:45:57 PM
The Business Class cabin was two thirds empty on the two hour Buenos Aires - Santiago sector and we landed an hour of so before sun down in clear and warm conditions with the Captain informing us it was still 29 degrees C. All passengers were deplaned at Santiago during the one hour station stop so that the aircraft could be groomed for the long-haul flight back to Toronto. Interestingly enough Air Canada has traffic rights between Buenos Aires and Santiago so some passengers left us but a larger number along with the new crew were waiting to join the flight at gate 15 in the new Santiago Airport terminal. Large glass windows are a prominent feature of the new airport which is great for aircraft spotters but they somehow forgot to incorporate an adequate air-conditioning system. It was stifling hot as we waited to board the flight although the Servisair-GlobeGround contract agents boarded the plane efficiently there was no advance boarding for Business-Class passengers as normal in Canada.
Despite the sagging economy the air travel industry has remained strong. Part of the reason for this is because people will always have a need to get from one place to another for business purposes. As more and more major companies locate their corporate headquarters offshore travel to another city or even another country is actually very likely. Commercial airlines are not the only ones to reap the benefits of this boom in air travel however. Studies show that there has also been a substantial increase in the number of travelers who choose the charter aircraft option. The fact that the cost of a private jet rental tends to be substantially higher than flying commercial has done little to deter this trend.
At 0730 AM some 10 hours after departure we finally heard from the flight-deck when the First Officer informed us that we had commenced our decent the current temperature was 2 degrees C at Toronto and we would be landing in 35 minutes (at 605 AM local time) and parking at gate 155 at Toronto`s new Terminal 1. I grabbed my in-flight kit and dashed to the lav to quickly freshen up and the Flight Attendants were now collecting all service items preparing the cabin for landing. We touched down at 0610 AM and arrived at gate 155 at 0622 AM some 22 minutes after the flight`s 0600 AM scheduled arrival time. As we were the first passengers off the aircraft we were quickly processed through customs and immigration but to our dismay our baggage was not priority processed and we waited about 20 minutes for it to arrive on the belt.