I took the Transpennine Express from Manchester Piccadilly to the airport and arrived at 9:50 a.m. for the scheduled 12:35 departure of IS45 to New York, with a flight time of about seven hours and half.
Aer Lingus flies from Terminals 1 and 2, although the former is reserved for flights within Ireland and Northern Ireland. Direct transatlantic services operate from the new extension of Terminal 2. A helpful sign informs passengers unfamiliar with the layout of the terminals.
It was great to discover the new extension of the airport, which is very spacious and has many kiosks for check-in. I couldn’t use them as I couldn’t check in online, apparently due to missing Covid information – everything had been submitted and verified through Verifly, so I’m not sure why that was the case.
I was able to check in at the Aer Club counters while I was flying business class. I had to show my passport and my Verifly pass. I was alongside the staff checking in for the flight who were delighted to be on the inaugural route. I received my paper boarding pass within minutes, then went through expedited security which was just as quick.
The terminal was extremely quiet, and the big screen in the departures hall featured a video celebrating the inaugural route to JFK, fueling excitement for the journey ahead.