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January, 2017

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“SpiceJet”:http://www.spicejet.com/ (motto: Red, Hot, Spicy) is a low-cost airline in which country? You’ve guessed it, India.

Our ‘spicy flight’ took us from Delhi to Jabalpur in Madhya Pradesh where we went to spot tigers.

As we discovered before we set off for India, all internal flights are restricted to 15kg unless you pay for an additional allowance, which we did before we left the UK (an extra 5kg each).

Although there was a long queue to check-in, there were so many desks open that we moved quickly and were soon declining an upgrade to the emergency exit seats (500 rupees/£7 per person). Whilst it doesn’t sound much, we had 10 internal flights during our trip, so it would have mounted up and our flight was only 1 hour 40 minutes.

To get from the shopping area to the gates, we had to scan our boarding card and having been rejected, realised you can only go through 60 minutes before the departure time (presumably to prevent over-crowding at the gates). So, it was another circuit of the shops!

Once on board, we found a full flight (2 seats on either side) with a medley of cheesy love songs being played over the sound system (think ‘Love is all around’, ‘Lady in Red’, ‘Isn’t she lovely’). As there was no sign of pushing back, the loop of love songs went around again, and the pilot made an unintelligible announcement. I checked with the cabin crew what he’d said, and was that the whole airport had been shut down for 20 minutes because of a VIP guest.

Whilst waiting to take off, we were once again encouraged to upgrade to the extra leg room seats with the promise of a complementary drink: but as there was no hot drinks or alcohol, it wasn’t exactly enticing.

Soft drinks and a limited range of sandwiches were for sale, but we’d taken advantage of a big breakfast.

We eventually took off 20 minutes late, but as the flight time was 20 minutes shorter than expected, we landed on time.

Whilst taxi-ing to the stand, the love songs were played for a final time.

Helen Jackson

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