Our Location:

Bucharest, Romania

Airport Information:

Name: Bucharest Băneasa Aurel Vlaicu International Airport (LRBS)

Elevation: 297 ft.

Runways: 7/25 (10,499 ft)

Yearly Ops: 1,768,000 Passengers

METAR: LRBS 201100Z 10005KT 350V150 CAVOK 24/11 Q1019 NOSIG

Click for Bucharest, Romania Forecast

PIREP (Pilot Report):

May 20, 0846Z, Over Slovakia 484NM W Bucharest:
     Left Prague 30 minutes ago headed for Romania. Sky clear and weather predicted good for Bucharest. Euro Control giving us guidance in accord with our flight plan. Departure from Prague airport uneventful although we again were given about 25 waypoints. John just asked for clearance to an interim waypoint to shorten flight and we were granted. Controllers very professional and accommodating.
     Arrival into Prague day before yesterday was on ILS even though we were visual at time of establishment (the time you are on the left-right guide path). Three passenger planes ready for takeoff when we landed so turned off runway at first exit to clear. Q lands at a speed of about 120 mph so moving fast. Since Prague is a major airport has high speed exits (45 degree turns instead of 90 degree turns at smaller airports).Made first turn off by using beta. Beta is when you pull power lever all the way back so that prop angle of attack such that blade actually blows air to the front. Acts as big air brake and rapidly slows the plane. When in this condition the word "Beta" shows on instrument panel. Why they call it beta I don't know: guess they didn't have room on panel for "backasswards". When we were on taxiway met by a' follow me' van. These are very useful on a large airport so you do not get lost; just like a good mentor in life.
     Had a no fly day yesterday and saw the sights in Prague. For those of you who have not been there, highly recommend. Since all four of John's grandparents were from Prague, a special visit for him. We walked about seven hours and saw all the high points. Last evening dinned on the roof of the hotel. Was quite a sight with the buildings well lighted and at one point a fireworks display. The city would appear to have been designed by the same folks who wrote fairytales.
     Came back to the FBO first thing this morning and did final flight planning. Also talked with Skyplan and asked that they plan a fuel stop in Rhodes on our way to Cyprus tomorrow. Trying to minimize fuel level concerns, especially when we are over water (in this case the Mediterranean). When we into the hanger, there was Q sitting next to two other Piper Meridians. Both looked older and masculine. Now afraid Q may deliver a litter of Piper Warriors about the time we get to Russia. Have decided no floats for Q; instead will change out alternator belt for chastity belt.      Speaking with Slovak controllers now so will sign off. Bucharest in two hours - Mike

May 21 0630Z, on the tarmac in Bucharest
     A new day, a new experience. Thought we had a clearance time of 0900 local. Found out that Euro Control had instead assigned 0730 Z (1030 local). We had started engine in our normal course to enter info in the Garmins. Turns out not permitted to start up without tower clearance and we brought the airport to a stop. Cars with flashing lights and security people all over the place. We now understand. Think I can get John out of jail on my next trip through.
     Flight yesterday after my sign off got more interesting. Ran into a line of thunderstorms just north of Bucharest. Buildups to about 37,000. We heard all the commercial traffic asking and receiving vectors for deviation so we did the same. Just as in the States they were very accommodating. Unlike in the States, we do not have Nexrad weather capability so instead relied on radar. Radar provides a sweep of about 45 degrees each side of course. Can tilt up and down and it reaches out 180 miles. Shows intensity of precipitation showing on screen as green, yellow, and red. Green ok, yellow not so good, and red a definite no. Notwithstanding radar, asked for vectors to avoid entering clouds when we could. In essence, shot the gaps between the thunderheads. Bucharest was clear and landed without difficulty.
     Bucharest reminds me of a South American city. Lots of traffic, buildings not so well kept, people dressed less fashionably than Prague. Would not recommend as tourist spot at this time although hotel the nicest we have stayed in so far. One attraction is the building housing the Parliament. Largest building in Europe and second largest in the world after the Pentagon. Built by the former dictator. As they say back home, would store a lot of beans.
     Have changed our flight plan today to route through Rhodes, a Greek island off Turkey. Will go from there to Cyprus. Changed because at 19,000 we use more fuel than 27,000 and can thus not go the same distances. Also finding that shorter legs give more flexibility re storm re-routings, head winds, etc. For this reason also called Skyplan to change route from India to Thailand. Will now go to northern Thailand to city of historic significance that will discuss in a following report. This a suggestion of Chris at Skyplan. Chris also said he has given this web site to his parents. Have enjoyed working with Chris. He is obviously intelligent, well mannered, and scholarly. A reflection of an outstanding upbringing, (Chris, don't forget the 20 dollars). Will file again on way to Cyprus - Mike

Local Info:

Image by seisdeagosto under cc-sa 2.0

Population: 1,931,838, Romania - 22,246,862

Landmarks: Bucharest Airport

Currency: Leu

Links: Romania Travel Info