Review of SWISS flight London Geneva in Economy

Airline SWISS
Flight LX 355
Class Economy
Seat 6F
Aircraft Airbus A320
Flight time 01:40
Take-off 28 Jan 17, 14:25
Arrival at 28 Jan 17, 17:05
LX   #27 out of 113 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 754 reviews
NGO85
By 1381
Published on 4th February 2017
Background:

This series covers a recent trip out to Geneva for the weekend. See Part 1 for the full background. As a reminder, the routing was:

Part 1 – LAX-LHR [AA 108, Boeing B777-300ER, Main Cabin Extra] – Here
Part 2 – LHR-GVA [LX 355, Airbus A320, Economy] – You are here
Part 3 – GVA-LHR [BA 725, Airbus A319, Euro Traveller] – Here
Part 4 – LHR-LAX [BA 269, Airbus A380-800, World Traveller] – Here

This report will cover the flight from LHR to GVA aboard an A320 with sharklets. The lounge visit will be to the LH Senator Lounge at LHR T2.



Pre-flight:

After getting off the wild bus ride from T3 to T2, we head upstairs and head towards transit security. There was nobody in line so we were quickly through.

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We did OLCI with LX so had mobile boarding passes, which were checked before we were released back into the terminal.

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With only 45 minutes before boarding, we scrapped the plan to go to the B pier to use the SQ Lounge and instead stayed in the A pier to use the LH Lounge. We didn’t know what gate we were assigned yet, but guessed it would be from the A gates since there were some LH planes leaving from this area. The LH Lounge is upstairs next to the EI Lounge. Entering, the agent swiped my OZ card and handed us access cards to the Senator Lounge.

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The food looked to be identical in both the Business Lounge and Senator Lounge, but the Senator Lounge was significantly quieter.

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After the lack of food on the AA flight we just got off of, we were glad to see that Do&Co was in charge of catering for the LH Lounge. The shrimp curry and Greek salad were both excellent. The beer selection was mediocre, but the quality of the food made up for it.

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After gorging ourselves, we left the lounge at 13:50 since we were scheduled to board at 13:55.

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The pair of LX A320s down below. Ours will be the fancy one with sharklets, the other one will operate the flight to ZRH and was running 30 minutes late.

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Shiny new LX A320 awaiting us.

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The lobby in T2’s A pier.

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The waiting area at our gate.

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————————-

SWISS, LX 355
Equipment: Airbus A320 [HB-JLT, delivered March 2013]
Departure: 14:25 (ATD: 14:41)
Arrival: 17:05 (ATA: 16:56)
Flight time: 1:15


There was some confusion since boarding for both the flight to GVA and ZRH were boarding from Gate A18R and Gate A18L at the same time so there a mess sorting out what line to get in. We boarded with the business class and *G passengers. Our boarding passes both flashed red. The agent handed us new boarding passes explaining that due to an aircraft swap, they needed to move us back one row.

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Down the jetbridge we go.

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The captain and 2 FAs welcomed us on board in French and then English as we turn in the cabin.

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Our seats in Row 6, there were 5 rows of J on this flight. The middle seat would remain empty, one of the few empty seats in the plane. I noticed something when doing OLCI, as a *G there were no seat restrictions. But when Ms. NGO85 was looking at the seat map at the same time, she only had a choice of ~10 seats. LX seems to give special treatment to *Gs.

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A look back as we settle in.

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Row 6 is a flex row and we have very good legroom as a result.

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Seat details.

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A look down our row.

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The sliding cabin separator with overhead monitor.

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The seatback.

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Seatback contents.

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The safety card for this A320.

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Inflight magazine with the US route map.

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Also some real estate listings in the magazine, probably out of my price range…

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Our fancy sharklet.

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Cargo is loaded as boarding continues.

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Good catering is nearby.

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Once boarding completed, the captain gave his introductory remarks in French and English before returning to the cockpit.

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We had to wait for the flight to ZRH to leave before we could push back. The safety video played while we wait.

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We push back with a 4U A320 next door.

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With the pin out, we are free to begin our taxi.

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The land of BA.

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Our sibling takes off in front of us as they head back to ZRH.

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We align onto 27L.

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BA B772, SA A343, and Concorde behind us.

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T2 traffic as we rumble down the runway.

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Lifting up over T2, T3, and T5 offering great aerial views of LHR.



The English countryside.

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We disappear above the clouds.

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As soon as we level off, the FAs close the curtain.

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As we leave England, the inflight service starts up.

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We are handed a pretzel by a friendly FA and drink orders are taken. I didn’t really care for the butter in the pretzel, but the catering was appropriate for a 75 minute flight.

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Crossing into France.

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After the trash was collected, the FAs came back through offering the LX chocolates from a basket.

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We began our initial descent as we passed Auxerre and approached Dijon.

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Snowy French towns just north of Switzerland.

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Turning towards Lac Léman.

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The snow covered Alps ahead.

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We turn towards Geneva as we cross past Rolle.

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A layer of fog was above the lake making it hard to see the towns along the water.

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Snow capped mountains in France.

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Final descent.

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We touch down ahead of schedule. The landing was incredibly smooth to where you couldn’t even feel the contact with the runway.

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We taxi into GVA and pull into one of the B Gate piers for non-Schengen flights.

BA A320.

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U2 A319.

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We come to a stop just in front of the main terminal.

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Deplaning was quick and the captain and FAs were in the galley thanking passengers.

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A last look at our plane.

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Heading towards immigration, which only had 2 lanes. Nonetheless, we were quickly admitted into Switzerland with a “merci” from the officer.

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Exiting towards duty free stores and the baggage claim.

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In the baggage claim, you can get a free 80-minute transit pass for Geneva. You just press the button and it gives you a ticket. This is a very nice feature of GVA to offer free public transportation.

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We took the train for the 5-minute ride to Gare Cornavin where we walked to our hotel. I’ll leave off this series here as we begin our stay in Geneva.





***Hotel Bonus***

We stayed at the Eastwest Hotel in a duplex suite. The first floor was the living room and the second floor had the bedroom. It was a well-appointed and comfortable room just a 5-minute walk from the train station.

See more

Verdict

SWISS

7.4/10
Cabin8.5
Cabin crew9.5
Entertainment/wifi4.0
Meal/catering7.5

London - LHR

7.9/10
Efficiency8.0
Access6.0
Services8.5
Cleanliness9.0

Geneva - GVA

8.6/10
Efficiency9.0
Access10.0
Services7.0
Cleanliness8.5

Conclusion

First time flying SWISS in a while, they certainly offer one of the better Y products in Western Europe with decent catering, friendly/professional crews, and classic cabins. For a 51 CHF ($51) fare, there were no complaints since LX provides much more value than BA (which was $77 for this route).

Cabin comfort: The flex row had very good legroom. The LX cabins are classic in ambience with the dark leather seats and accented antimacassars. They are no frills which means you don't lose space due to extra peripherals like entertainment boxes. The empty middle seat was also nice.

Crew: The crew spoke English well and did service with a smile. Very nice to see the captain boarding, deplaning, and during his pre-flight announcement at the front of the cabin.

Meal and catering: The pretzel and chocolate are above average for <1.5h flights (compared to their Western European rivals). The pretzel was of decent quality and my cup of coffee was good.

Entertainment: No newspapers offered. Standard seatback content. The overhead monitors played some SWISS travel ads and then switched to the moving map.

Information on the route London (LHR) Geneva (GVA)

The contributors of Flight-Report published 22 reviews of 3 airlines on the route London (LHR) → Geneva (GVA).


Useful

The airline with the best average rating is Qatar Airways with 8.3/10.

The average flight time is 1 hours and 40 minutes.

  More information

8 Comments

  • Comment 384437 by
    Rl 777 810 Comments

    Thank you for sharing the next installment of this series!

    Good to have empty transit security lines, especially at LHR.

    “The pair of LX A320s down below. Ours will be the fancy one with sharklets”
    - Lovely shot. It's definitely nice to get the only LX 320 with sharklets/winglets, you had a chance of 1 in 22.

    “There was some confusion since boarding for both the flight to GVA and ZRH were boarding from Gate A18R and Gate A18L”
    - Having both flights next to each other made for a great picture, with some added confusion for some as you're saying.

    Wonderful spotting shots at LHR.

    Absolutely stunning aerial shots after takeoff. The picture with the SV 77W and BA 319 made for a good size comparison between the two types.

    “We disappear above the clouds.”
    - Great shot.

    “you can get a free 80-minute transit pass for Geneva.”
    - That is what I call great arrival service. Impressive.

    Overall it looks like an alright quickie with LX, I'm trying them out in April when I head down to Southwestern Germany (flight to ZRH) so this FR was pretty helpful.

    Thank you for the hotel bonus, it looked really nice inside.

    Thanks for sharing. Have a good one, see you!

    • Comment 384755 by
      NGO85 AUTHOR 1622 Comments

      "Good to have empty transit security lines, especially at LHR."
      - Surprisingly, we had good luck with transits at LHR heading both directions. Still doesn't make them enjoyable though!

      “It's definitely nice to get the only LX 320 with sharklets/winglets, you had a chance of 1 in 22."
      - I honestly didn't know they had any with sharklets, LX has a pretty old fleet so figured they'd all be 10-15 year old A320s.

      "Wonderful spotting shots at LHR."
      - LHR is always guaranteed to have a huge variety of planes, the benefit of how cosmopolitan London is.

      “That is what I call great arrival service. Impressive."
      - A small gesture to make-up for the high prices in the city ;)
      "I'm trying them out in April when I head down to Southwestern Germany (flight to ZRH) so this FR was pretty helpful."
      - As Numero_2 said, you'll probably get more expansive catering on the longer ARN-ZRH flight, the pretzel is the non-mealtime snack service.

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  • Comment 384486 by
    757Fan 595 Comments

    Great next report of your trip! It looks like you had a nice flight with Swiss on this route. What a nice touch to come through the cabin following the main service to give chocolates.

    Great photos as always!

  • Comment 384492 by
    Numero_2 9988 Comments

    Thanks Michael ! ^^

    Too bad you didn't have muche time to visite UA, AC and SQ lounges at LHR T2.

    A nice flight with LX, as usual. ;)
    You had the "snack" service because of your afternoon flight. During lunch or dinner time a sandwich or a small hot quiche are served.

    • Comment 384757 by
      NGO85 AUTHOR 1622 Comments

      Bonjour Clement, merci pour ce commentaire^^

      "Too bad you didn't have muche time to visite UA, AC and SQ lounges at LHR T2." <== La prochaine fois ;)

      "A nice flight with LX, as usual. ;)" <== C'était agréable^^ Il n'y avait pas de panier de montres, seulement des chocolats ;(

  • Comment 384657 by
    jetsetpanda 2294 Comments

    Hi Michael and thank you for sharing another great FR.

    "With only 45 minutes before boarding, we scrapped the plan to go to the B pier to use the SQ Lounge and instead stayed in the A pier to use the LH Lounge."
    - By the time you get to the B pier you would have had to turn back. That was the right thing to do.

    "...we were glad to see that Do&Co was in charge of catering for the LH Lounge."
    - So this is what I missed. I should visit it next time I'm in LHR flying with *A.

    "Our boarding passes both flashed red. "
    - Didn't you heart beat a little faster afterwards? I thought it was an upgrade coming.

    "Once boarding completed, the captain gave his introductory remarks in French and English before returning to the cockpit."
    - What happened to German????

    "We are handed a pretzel by a friendly FA and drink orders are taken."
    - Nice snack and good size.

    "Lye pretzel"?
    - Isn't lye highly corrosive and used to clean pipes? I know that for food production it is used in safe and probably highly diluted amounts, but having lye as a description doesn't sound very comforting to me.

    "We stayed at the Eastwest Hotel in a duplex suite."
    - Looks pretty comfy.

    • Comment 384758 by
      NGO85 AUTHOR 1622 Comments

      Thanks for stopping by Adan!

      "By the time you get to the B pier you would have had to turn back. That was the right thing to do."
      - It turned out okay, the catering at the LH Lounge was good enough for us. The LH Lounge doesn't have showers, which is the only disadvantage if you have a longer layover, but with only 45 minutes, it was a non-issue during this short layover. Just find some excuse to fly LH/LX through LHR next time.

      "Didn't you heart beat a little faster afterwards? I thought it was an upgrade coming."
      - My experiences with red lights is not op-ups, but getting re-assigned crappy seats. I would hardly expect LX to op-up a non-LX elite. They did have at least 4 open J seats on this flight though.

      "What happened to German????" <== To GVA? French only^^ I could be mistaken, but I think their safety video is in English with English subtitles.

      "Isn't lye highly corrosive and used to clean pipes? I know that for food production it is used in safe and probably highly diluted amounts, but having lye as a description doesn't sound very comforting to me."
      - Lye is just the term for hydroxide solutions. I think they use it in place of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) in the batter of the pretzels. I'm pretty sure it is nowhere near basic enough to cause any bodily harm. Not any different than eating vinegar (acetic acid) ;)

      "Looks pretty comfy." <== Clement was pushing for me to stay at the Mandarin Oriental^^

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