This was my first time in PRG and it was a charming and beautiful revelation. I enjoyed exploring this city and will share some impressions in the bonus at the end in addition to my stay at the Intercontinental hotel and the apartment that I rented in Josefov. in the meantime let's get back to the actual trip report.
The anticipation of flying a new airline (in this case CSA) is always a welcome experience worth getting excited about for every aviation geek. As I said in the beginning, this trip was very similar to J intra-European experience minus the cost. This particular segment cost me USD 44.40 (EUR 42.15) and I also pre-ordered a business class meal for USD 8.92 (EUR 8.47). I used my AZ's Freccia Alata Plus level to get priority check-in, boarding and lounge access at PRG. The only disappointment was the inability to pre-reserve a seat, even for elite Skyteam members. I played the seat lottery and waited until 24 hrs before dept. to select a window seat in the last row hoping that the flight would not be full.
I arrived at the OK counter and used the designated Skypriority line. Check-in by the smiling agent was smooth and courteous. I went through security in a breeze and headed to the Erste Lounge. PRG airport has an utilitarian feel lacking charm and sometimes it reminded me of a warehouse setting.
After security I went to the Erste lounge.
I thought that it was odd that OK did not have its own lounge at its hub and instead it refers its passengers to one that is managed by a third party entity. I presented my boarding pass along with AZ Skyteam Elite card and was welcomed inside. The club has two sections but the right side was less crowded. In addition there were WC's right after the reception area.
Once I stepped inside I felt that the silver hanging lights and see-through "bead curtains" gave this place a 70's disco era ambiance. It was a one of a kind type of lounge for sure.
The buffet area had pastries, cookies, crisps, and pretzel sticks. The hot items consisted of chicken and pork schnitzels, pasta primavera and beef broth. Refrigerators were stocked with crudites and a variety of open faced sandwiches.
There was also a kid's corner inside the lounge.
I left for the lounge as soon as the gate was assigned for my flight.
My plane at the gate.
Eventually the crew arrived and boarded the airplane.
Around 50 min. before dept. the gate agents arrived and prepared the gate for boarding. Wheelchair passengers were given priority folowed by J and Skyteam Elite passengers.
A FA was positioned at the door welcoming passengers as they entered. I made my way to the back where another FA was stationed. I said "hello" and she replied back, but did not seem very engaging.
Contents of seat pocket.
View from across.
After everyone boarded, my gamble paid off and I won the seat lottery with the whole row to myself. Another passenger eventually moved to the row across and took the other set of seats for himself. i raised the armrests and got pretty comfortable.
A couple of views from my window seat.
Plane spotting during taxiing.
David & Goliath.
Take off on a foggy day. Bye PRG.
Once we reached cruising altitude, the service began quickly. One of the FA's in the back galley handed me my pre-ordered meal. I was only able to order the cold meal option because my flight was under 3 hrs. It consisted of cold cuts, sliced cheese, garnishes, two pieces of bread and a tiramisu cake. I saw a few people buy the baguette sandwich which seemed like a good value because it was big.
Interesting tray table design.
Pre-ordered J meal.
The rest of the flight was uneventful and soon we were landing in CDG. I was supposed to have 3 drinks with the pre-ordered meal but I never requested anything else besides the hot tea and the FA's never asked. During the descent one of the FA's asked me to lower the armrests for the row in preparation for landing.
Taxiing to the gate.
A shot of my plane parked at the gate.
I met my family at the Intercontinental hotel where for the first 24 hrs I just stayed put and had all my meals at the Club lounge. It was raining when I arrived and I needed time to recuperate from the jet lag.
Entrance & lobby.
View from the room.
Business Center & Dining area.
Zatecka No 14 Apartments.
Very nice and big apartments located in Josefov. I loved the convenience of having a kitchen and washer/dryer. The apartment had 3 bedrooms and 2 WC's.
A few sights of PRG.
Hearty lunch with sausage appetizers, friend cheese, beef shin goulash and potato dumplings.
U Parlamentu restaurant.
Pancake stuffed with spinach covered with cheese appetizer, roast pork knuckle, roast duck with bread & potato dumplings and sauerkraut.
Cabin crew 7.5
Erste Premier Lounge
Prague - PRG
Paris - CDG
PRG is not that big and it felt very functional. The Erste lounge did its job and it was a nice place to relax before the flight. The decor had a retro feel to it that I found unique. Catering is basic but the attempt to offer a few hot dishes is appreciated.
I was glad that I had a chance to fly a new airline and CSA proved to be a decent carrier. The ability to pre-order a premium meal was a big plus and the price was quite reasonable. For a cold meal the quality was fine. I did not find the crew overly friendly or very proactive but they did their job efficiently. It was a luxury to get a whole row for myself and by taking advantage of the Skyteam Plus benefits I had a very close intra-European J experience on this particular segment. A minor annoyance is the lack of free seat assignment for other Skyteam elite members.
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