If there’s something most planespotters hate, it’s definitely taking pictures in a cloudy weather. But since the ticket from Dublin to East Midlands was 10 euros and the next best option was staying home for the weekend, there I went.
Initially, the idea was to photograph Ryanair’s only Boeing 737-700, EI-SEV, which is based at the airport, but of course that one didn’t appear.
Still, it was a fun few hours of planespotting in a cold weather. Hope the pictures are minimally good, as it was very painful to edit them.
737-800 G-JZHE — LS642 ALC-EMA
Most traffic at this time of the year consists in Brits from the surroundings trying to run away from the weather in the UK. Its catchment area hits cities like Nottingham, Leicester, Derby and even Birmingham.
And Jet2 manages to capitalize very well on that; they have four 737-800s based in the airport.
I wrote about Jet2 this year and their business model is just fascinating. They are the airline that created the holiday company, and not the other way around; this livery, in fact, is the “official” livery of their vacations business, Jet2holidays. According to their financial filings, half of their passengers fly through one of their packages.
737-800 EI-EMH — FR5746 NOC-EMA
Besides Jet2, the other favourite in East Midlands is, you guessed it, Ryanair.
This Winter season, the Irish carrier also has four 737-800s based in the airport. This one is seen arriving from Knock, or as they like to be called, Ireland West Airport.
CASA C-295M 016 — RZE-EMA
If I didn’t luck out with the weather, at least I did with this traffic: a Polish Air Force C-295, which landed from Rzeszów. About an hour later, a second one of the same type landed in East Midlands.
737-800 G-GDFZ — LS606 AGP-EMA
This is the worst edit of the batch, but at least I tried. Here, G-GDFZ is seen bringing some happy Brits after a great, deserved time in Málaga.
A300-600RF EI-EXR — QY452 BRU-EMA
These two weren’t easy either, but I think it was one of the first times I’ve ever seen an Airbus A300. It was loud and I don’t think the photos make justice to it, but still…
East Midlands is an important cargo hub to the big three (DHL, FedEx and UPS), given its privileged location and the abundance of free space in the airport. According to the airport, in fact, it is the UK’s largest airport for dedicated freight.
And although most of the cargo traffic arrives and departs at night, there are some scattered flights during the day in trunk routes.
Dash 8-400 G-JECX — BE1054 AMS-EMA
Another one I was happy to see was this Q400 (now it’s officially called the Dash 8 again, or something along these lines), from flybe’s revival.
The airline’s strategy still consists of making flights, with their smaller aircraft, that even low-cost carriers cannot.
From East Midlands, flybe serves Belfast and Amsterdam, from where this flight was arriving.
CASA C-295M 023 — RZE-EMA
About an hour after the first CASA, this second Polish Air Force aircraft landed. Definitely a highlight.
737-800 G-TUKO — BY7655 ALC-EMA
The last one before heading back to the hotel was this TUI 737-800.
As one of Europe’s largest holiday companies, TUI also has a sizeable presence in the UK. Its airline, formerly known as Thomson, has a 737-800 based in East Midlands. According to their schedule, this Winter they are connecting the airport to Alicante, Lanzarote and Tenerife.
And by the way, it was cool to get a shot of their old livery before it’s gone for good.
Lovely shots and nice information as usual. Cloudy weather sure is a pain for spotting.