Author Topic: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish  (Read 3087 times)

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« on: September 13, 2021, 11:33:52 PM »
I was involved with arranging a charter flight to Ukraine for Uman travellers, here is a TR with some behind the scene titbits.

The groundwork was laid last year in Aug when preparing for the Uman season with extremely limited flights, we somehow ended up setting up a charter. We kept it mainly under wraps while working out the details, then while we were going public, Ukraine made the announcement that they will close their border for 30 days. LOT right away wanted to pull the plug, but as true Breslover we continued to push till the very end, paying up front for the charter, being backed by over 600 who wanted a seat in case there would be an approval, but in the end it fell thru. We immediately told LOT to hold an aircraft for us for the upcoming year. Fast forward a few months, and we started working out the details.

First LOT applied for slots & permits, and as we expected, Ukraine denied a permit to operate a non-stop flight for LOT, saying we should have used a Ukrainian carrier. We decided to go with plan B, doing a tech-stop in RZE on the way to Ukraine, pax will stay on the aircraft while refueling, and on the return stop there will be a stop in WAW, pax will have to disembark to clear security to satisfy TSA regulations. Given the stops we lost the competitive part, so we didnít actively sell the flight, but still had many that reserved. We started working on getting a permit for non-stop, and after some hard work (דמים תרתי משמע) we succeeded and BĒH got the permit, we announced that we will fly non-stop, and within a few short days the flight was sold out.

We started working on all the other aspects, given that our clients paid a premium for this flight, we wanted to give them a great experience. The week before the flight we went to the airport, met the manager and discussed some details, and finalized whatever was needed.

After working nonstop with sleepless nights, Shabbos came בא שבת בא מנוחה, was able to unplug and relax, and without the pressure as not being able to know if anything happened last minute.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2021, 12:00:46 PM by Something Fishy »

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2021, 11:34:07 PM »
Motzai Shabbos right away I opened my phone, and checked on the inbound flight, which just then entered US Airspace. Got ready (as I was fully packed before Shabbos), loaded the car and headed to the airport. On the highway one was able to see who else is rushing to Uman based on how reckless they were driving.

I arrived at the airport 3 hours before the flight, had a chat with the ground staff, and opened check-in with me being SEQ 001.



When the crew arrived we had a chat with them, and they were excited to work the flight. Check-in ran smoothly, the 2nd hour being the busiest, and we were able to close check-in 55 minutes before the flight.. An agent escorted me to the front of the security line, I cleared TSA and headed to the gate, while there was a big minyan slichos.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2021, 11:52:52 PM by AsherO »

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Re: Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2021, 11:35:58 PM »


After a few minutes I boarded the aircraft, inspected the stuff we put out on the seats & headrests, and started boarding.


Economy class


Premium Economy


Business Class

We then ran into a delay as we had some oversized baggage and TSA were taking their time to clear them (given that it was 1am with less staff), and we didnt want to leave anything behind.



https://www.instagram.com/p/CTddi42jDTK/

We finally closed the doors about 70 minutes late, at 2:40am. Right away the aircraft was pushed back and we headed to the runway, and took off at 2:50am.

LOT Polish 7340
Newark (EWR) > Kyiv Boryspil (KBP)
Sunday, Sep 5
Pushback: 2:40am (70 min late)
Takeoff: 2:40am
Landed: 6:14PM (44 min late)
Flight time: 8hr24min
Aircraft: Boeing 787-9

Right after reaching cruising altitude I went to each galley, reviewed the catering that was loaded, advised the crew how & what to serve, and service commenced.

We did a special menu for this flight, and I donít think there was a flight loaded with so much food, that some had to be stored in overhead compartments and in the crew rest area





We ordered kosher soda & juice, in addition to many snacks & nosh.



Given that the flight was late Motzai Shabbos, we didnít want to serve fleishigs, so we came up with Cheese Blintzes, Danish, Yogurt, Fruit, and hot Ravolvi. (Pictured is the J/P tray, econ had the same menu just in a disposable box)





After Melva Malka the minyanim started, and everyone (besides those who were trying to sleep) had a good time





The crew put out some snacks, and I kept on checking how overloaded the carts were





Also available a lunch box (insead of a prepared sandwich which would have been soggy by this time)



We also had some cereal packets, and of course kosher milk



Before landing brunch was served, including a hot dish - most flights also serve one hot meal.







We also did warn bagels together with the brunch



We obviously produced way more garbage than a usual flight, and we chipped in and helped to collect the trash





Cabin was prepared for landing, and at 6:14pm we touched down in KBP airport, 44 behind our scheduled arrival of 5:30pm. I was awaited by the manager, I handed over the 20+ bag tags I had checked in with food for the returning flights, and advised which trolleys to offland with extra food as well, and discussed our returning flights.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2021, 11:39:36 PM by chff »

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Re: Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2021, 11:38:13 PM »

2 non-stop flights to EWR

Motzai Rosh Hashanah at 12 I left Uman and headed to the airport. Check-in was busy but uneventful, LOT had bought in from WAW TSA approved security officers in order to ask the standard scary question of ďdid you pack your own bagsĒ. An hour before the flight check-in closed, all the staff went to the gate to board and sent off the flight, and returned 75 minutes later and opened up check-in for the 2nd flight

LOT Polish 7432
Kyiv Boryspil (KBP) > Newark (EWR)
Thursday, Sep 9
Pushback: 6:00am (15 min late)
Takeoff: 6:22am
Landed: 8:55am (10 min early)
Flight time: 9hr33min
Aircraft: Boeing 787-9

Just about an hour before the 2nd flight we closed check-in, I headed to the gate, boarded the first, had a chat with the crew (both flights came in right before with the operating crew from WAW) and commenced boarding. The 2nd flight was a bit delayed, due to the plane leaving WAW later than planned.
LOT Polish 7481
Kyiv Boryspil (KBP) > Newark (EWR)
Thursday, Sep 9
Pushback: 10:00am (45 min late)
Takeoff: 10:18am
Landed: 12:53pm (8 min late)
Flight time: 9hr34min
Aircraft: Boeing 787-8

Same like the outbound flight, I checked the catering and advised the crew about the snacks. We didnít load kosher soda or juice, but we had bought along the new UHT Milk (as we werenít sure about fridge storage) + there was plenty of regular milk left over from the outbound flight.







We ordered the meals from Taki Da - all parave

First meal - same for all classes





All snacks were put out



Most people were exhausted from Rosh Hashanah and the flight was mainly quiet

Second meal was served before arrival, again with a 2nd hot dish



I made sure all snacks were taken and nothing left over, the cabin was prepared and at 12:54 we landed in EWR and taxied past the aircraft from the earlier flight to the gate.

Offline Dan

  • Administrator
  • Dansdeals Lifetime 50K Presidential Platinum Elite
  • **********
  • Join Date: May 2008
  • Posts: 61147
  • Total likes: 8314
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 16442
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: CLE
  • Programs: UA Global Services, AA Lifetime Plat, DL Dirt, SPG Plat, Hyatt Diamond, Fairmont Lifetime Plat, Hilton Diamond, Priority Club Plat, Avis Chairman, National EE, Hertz PC
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2021, 11:52:51 PM »
Very cool!

What did Y and J seats cost?
Was there no way to charter a plane nonstop to KBP?
How come parve only on the return?
Save your time, I don't answer PM. Post it in the forum and a dedicated DDF'er will get back to you as soon as possible.

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2021, 12:15:03 PM »
Very cool!

What did Y and J seats cost?

Price were

Round trip J/P/Y: $5600/$3600/$1900
Return only P/Y: $2500/$1250

Was there no way to charter a plane nonstop to KBP?
How come parve only on the return?

We flew non-stop

We were limited to a certain restaurant

Offline M3B3LY

  • DansDeals Copper Elite
  • *
  • Join Date: Apr 2021
  • Posts: 19
  • Total likes: 17
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 0
    • View Profile
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2021, 12:44:38 PM »
Pretty amazing! What was the response/feedback from lot about the fights?

Offline ushdadude

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Apr 2013
  • Posts: 5298
  • Total likes: 333
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 5
    • View Profile
  • Location: Long Island
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2021, 01:20:17 PM »
So as someone who's dealt with it, is decent KSLM hard to procure? Are the logistics difficult or is there just no incentive to provide it?
(I don't mean to imply your KSLM was bad)
Trolls will always post stupid replies

Offline Ergel

  • Dansdeals Lifetime 10K Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 12841
  • Total likes: 892
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 3
    • View Profile
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2021, 01:28:43 PM »
So as someone who's dealt with it, is decent KSLM hard to procure? Are the logistics difficult or is there just no incentive to provide it?
(I don't mean to imply your KSLM was bad)
I'm sure if UA got $1900 for a RT Y ticket, they could also provide a decent KSML
Life isn't about checking the boxes. Nobody cares.

Offline Something Fishy

  • Global Moderator
  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • **********
  • Join Date: Jan 2011
  • Posts: 7683
  • Total likes: 3267
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 44
    • View Profile
    • Kosher Horizons
  • Location: Not Brooklyn
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2021, 01:30:44 PM »
I'm sure if UA got $1900 for a RT Y ticket, they could also provide a decent KSML

The profit margin ain't the issue here. It's just the fact that they can get away with it.
Check out my site for epic kosher adventures: Kosher Horizons

Offline Something Fishy

  • Global Moderator
  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • **********
  • Join Date: Jan 2011
  • Posts: 7683
  • Total likes: 3267
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 44
    • View Profile
    • Kosher Horizons
  • Location: Not Brooklyn
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2021, 01:31:32 PM »
@chff were the pax able to earn miles on this flight?
Check out my site for epic kosher adventures: Kosher Horizons

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #11 on: September 14, 2021, 02:13:25 PM »
Pretty amazing! What was the response/feedback from lot about the fights?
Very positive feedback

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2021, 02:14:14 PM »
So as someone who's dealt with it, is decent KSLM hard to procure? Are the logistics difficult or is there just no incentive to provide it?
(I don't mean to imply your KSLM was bad)
Out of NY we had great KSML, and Zetko provides standard good KSML

Out of KBP we were limited to a certain place, plus the food had to be precured before RH

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #13 on: September 14, 2021, 02:14:25 PM »
@chff were the pax able to earn miles on this flight?
No

Offline lubaby

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jun 2010
  • Posts: 5228
  • Total likes: 625
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 12
    • View Profile
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #14 on: September 14, 2021, 02:21:25 PM »

Offline Dan

  • Administrator
  • Dansdeals Lifetime 50K Presidential Platinum Elite
  • **********
  • Join Date: May 2008
  • Posts: 61147
  • Total likes: 8314
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 16442
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: CLE
  • Programs: UA Global Services, AA Lifetime Plat, DL Dirt, SPG Plat, Hyatt Diamond, Fairmont Lifetime Plat, Hilton Diamond, Priority Club Plat, Avis Chairman, National EE, Hertz PC
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #15 on: September 14, 2021, 02:27:37 PM »
This is why @Dan didn't go  :P
That's because I couldn't redeem UA saver miles.
Save your time, I don't answer PM. Post it in the forum and a dedicated DDF'er will get back to you as soon as possible.

Offline lakewood34

  • Dansdeals Platinum Elite
  • ****
  • Join Date: Jun 2017
  • Posts: 258
  • Total likes: 21
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 40
    • View Profile
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #16 on: September 14, 2021, 02:43:16 PM »
just curious if masks were legally not required or did the flight crew look the other way
also did you have only male flight crew ?

Online chff

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Jul 2012
  • Posts: 5043
  • Total likes: 288
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 24
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
  • Location: NYC
  • Programs: All of them...
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #17 on: September 14, 2021, 02:47:38 PM »
just curious if masks were legally not required or did the flight crew look the other way

No comment

also did you have only male flight crew ?

Yup

Offline aygart

  • Dansdeals Lifetime 10K Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *******
  • Join Date: May 2008
  • Posts: 13357
  • Total likes: 8155
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 13
    • View Profile
    • Lower Watt Energy Brokers
  • Programs: www.lowerwatt.com
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #18 on: September 14, 2021, 03:32:11 PM »
Out of NY we had great KSML, and Zetko provides standard good KSML

Out of KBP we were limited to a certain place, plus the food had to be precured before RH

Zetko is formerly Wiess's
Feelings don't care about your facts

Offline EJB

  • Dansdeals Lifetime Presidential Platinum Elite
  • *********
  • Join Date: Sep 2012
  • Posts: 5326
  • Total likes: 217
  • DansDeals.com Hat Tips 15
    • View Profile
Re: Uman 2021 Charter Flights - operated by LOT Polish
« Reply #19 on: September 14, 2021, 10:32:11 PM »
Out of NY we had great KSML, and Zetko provides standard good KSML

Out of KBP we were limited to a certain place, plus the food had to be precured before RH

At least you guys didn't get food poisoning from it!