Monday, 21 September 2015

30 hours 10 minutes in Gothenburg

One day an email popped into the inbox from RyanAir with the message “fly to Gothenburg for only £9.99” and so we did! It is just over 1000 kms between the two airports and at these fares it is a real bargain. In total it cost £39.98 return for the two of us - how they can sell tickets at those prices I do not know because Air Passenger Duty on the outward flight is £13 each and then you have to add both sets of airport charges and all of the other ways the airline industry has dreamt up to extract money from travellers. 

Our financial objective is to have the holiday paid for from the profit we made when we were given compensation for our flight to the Isle of Mann being cancelled in August.

Gothenburg has been sitting on our wish list ever since we read an article in one of the dailies talking about how nice (and cheap for Sweden) the city was for a short break. It described how the airport was close to the city with a frequent bus service, buying a Gothenburg card gave you free or reduced entry to museums and free pubic transport, food was interesting, alcohol was too expensive to buy and lots more.

So our challenge is going to be to see what we can fit into a one night stay or 30 hours 10 minutes (which is the time between the published arrival and departure times of our flights) without exhausting ourselves. On our itinerary are:

  • a boat tour of the city
  • a visit to the National Gallery to see some Scandinavian Art
  • finding and then eating cinnamon buns
  • walking around the city to get a feel for its architecture and character

The Goteborg Tourist Pass is heavily advertised and would be a good buy but for the fact that many of the attractions included in it are closed this late into the year  so we decide to do “Pay as we go"

Our flight out departs at 0830 which is far more civilised than the too frequent 0600 option (the time our local airport opens for departures) and the return arrives back at a civilised 1830. The time difference is only one hour and hence we should be able to have an interesting time without getting too exhausted.

And so, not terribly early on a Tuesday morning we find ourselves driving to the airport (we also got a cheap deal on car parking and so decided to take the lazy option) ready to ensure that we do not incur any of the additional charges the airline and airport have ready to inflict on the unwary traveller. We do not want to pay extra for:

  • checking in at the airport
  • printing boarding cards at the airport
  • priority security screening;
  • preassigned seats;
  • seats at the front;
  • priority boarding;
  • tea or coffee on the flight (one cup each would cost more than 50% of the price of one ticket);
  • their version of essential travel insurance;
  • SMS texts of our flight times;
  • checked luggage;
  • and much more

"£39.98 for two return” is what we paid and that is what we intend to keep to!

Screen Shot 2015 08 18 at 16 07 25

With the usual Ryan Air efficiency, we take off on time and arrive early. The bus into town (with free wifi) is just outside of the airport terminal and soon we are in Gothenburg only one hour into our 30 hours and 10 minutes on Swedish soil.

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