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Flying Domestically with SAS During COVID

Flying Domestically with SAS During COVID

BY SANDER TOMASSEN 19386d AGO 0 COMMENTS

Saturday, Jan 23rd, 2021 (SK347):

 

It’s my first flight of 2021 today. Also my first flight since November 2020. It's also my first trip report with TheExplorerBlog!

 

I will be flying to Oslo (OSL) with SAS (Scandinavian Airlines) today. I'm on one of their only two flights from Trondheim (TRD) today, with the reduced flight schedule being a result of both COVID and the fact that I'm flying on a Saturday. That meant I had to get up really early, with the flight leaving at 8:55 am. I took the airport express bus, and for those wanting to visit Trondheim later, that's the best option in my opinion.

 

I arrived at the airport about one hour before my flight, with not a soul in the departure hall. I got through security with ease; in fact, I had the whole thing to myself. TRD isn't the biggest airport, so there are not that many people in general. (Fun fact: during non-COVID times, the route between TRD and OSL is the fifth busiest in Europe.)

 

Boarding began around 20 minutes before departure, starting with rows 12 to 25; I'm in seat 12A. I was greeted by some lovely cabin crew when boarding the aircraft who handed out wet wipes; I appreciated that.

 

The aircraft for today is a Boeing 737-700, registration SE-RER. 20 years old that thing! Economy class is laid out in a standard 3-3 layout but does not feature a proper business class, only a standard 'European Business Class' in the forward part of the cabin (Economy class with a blocked middle seat). SAS hasn't retrofitted the interior, so I'm guessing this aircraft won't stay in the fleet for much longer. The safety cards still say "737-600/-700", even when the -600s left the fleet a couple of years ago. I must admit that I was hoping for an aircraft change as I like the new Airbus A320neos better.

 

It started snowing heavily while I was waiting for my flight, so after boarding was completed, we taxied for de-icing, which took about 20 minutes. We took off from runway 09 about 25 minutes late, departing east before turning right, southbound for Oslo. Lovely hearing that engine sound again!

 

After takeoff, I witnessed a stunning sunrise as we passed through the clouds. The rest of the flight was fairly standard, not much happening, except for a grown man getting up and walking down the aisle before the seatbelt sign was switched off. Also, some slight turbulence a bit after takeoff. No onboard service these days; looking forward to when that comes back. I was lucky enough to have a free seat next to me, which was nice. Somehow that happens to me about 90% of the time.

 

The old cabin of the 737-700 I flew on from TRD-OSL.

 

We reached our cruising altitude of 34,000 feet and only spent eight minutes cruising before starting our descent to Oslo. Again, some slight turbulence through our descent. It was a calm final approach and a very smooth landing from the north onto runway 19R. We only landed 10 minutes late after our 25-minute delay out of Trondheim. The flight time was 41 minutes.

 

While taxiing to our gate, I saw so many Norwegian (NAX) aircraft sitting around, many of which 787 Dreamliners both with and without engines; a very weird sight. We parked at the new C gates at OSL, part of an expansion of the airport from 2017, called Pier North. The airport was also unbelievably quiet, with barely any people, even though OSL is the largest and busiest airport in Norway. After deplaning I took the airport express train downtown, the easiest/best way to get to and from Oslo airport, which I also took when I was flying home the next day.

 

 

The 737-700 that took me to OSL.

 

Sunday, Jan 24th, 2021 (SK370):

My return flight home the next day was pretty much the same; nothing spectacular. I flew onboard an 18-year-old Boeing 737-800, registration LN-RRK, leaving at 7:50 pm. It was a nice flight, with a soft landing back in Trondheim on runway 09 and a flight time of only 37 minutes.

 

I hope you enjoyed my trip report and got a glimpse of what it's like traveling domestically in Norway. Thank you for reading! If you want, please follow me on Instagram @lordtomassen.

 

Disclaimer: I did not need a COVID test when arriving in Oslo, but due to rising cases in the city the day before I left, I did take a COVID test at the airport when I arrived back in Trondheim. Masks are also mandatory and I always wore one. Stay safe!

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TRIP REPORTS OSL TRD Trondheim Oslo Covid-19 flying trip report SAS Scandinavian Airlines travel airport

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