Hahn Air is an airline which only has three small aircrafts, two scheduled routes and a total maximum capacity of 48 passengers per week and yet it sells 30 million tickets a year on behalf of 350 airlines (and some rail and shuttle companies) in 190 countries through over 100,000 travel agencies.
How is it possible? Hahn Air's main activity is to ticket smaller airlines through GDSs in countries which are not their main markets (a Global Distribution System is a reservation system such as Amadeus, Galileo, Sabre or Worldspan used by travel agencies worldwide to book flights). An airline from let's say Peru has only a few bookings from a distant country such as Iceland and its tickets cannot be issued on its own stock, so Hahn Air issues tickets on its stock on behalf of this airline.
Hahn Air's three aircrafts are one Cessna CitationJet CJ4 with six passenger seats and two Cessna Citation Sovereign with 8 passenger seats each. These aircrafts are usually described as private jets, although technically they're private jets only when chartered by one customer but they're business jets when used for scheduled flights.
The two scheduled routes are from Düsseldorf to Luxembourg and back twice a week (on Monday and Friday) and from Düsseldorf to Palma de Mallorca on Friday evening and back on Sunday evening. These scheduled flights are necessary for Hahn Air to keep its airline certificate.
So you can book just a ticket for this flight like for any other scheduled flights, you don't need to charter the plane. A one-way ticket from Luxembourg to Düsseldorf costs almost the same as a Lufthansa one-way business ticket to Frankfurt on a narrow-body plane with the middle seat blocked. But this is a very, very different experience even if this flight also is marketed as business class.
I first flew to Paris, I spent a few hours in my favourite city enjoying a good lunch at Maison Péret and walking from Denfert-Rocherau to the Marais. I later took the metro to Gare de l'Est and boarded the TGV.
It takes only two hours and ten minutes to get from Paris to Luxembourg (would be four hours by car). The TGV is fast, on-time, clean and comfortable, and the staff is friendly and polite. Prices vary as much as for flights, and as first class was only 10 € more expensive this time, it was easy to choose. The only difference is that TGV First Class has a 1+2 configuration (2nd class is 2+2), and while there are no other services included, it is worth the small additional amount.
You can order reasonably priced food from the bar.
Luxembourg is the only country I know where most people can speak four languages (Luxembourgish, French, German, English) and as 49% of the population is from other countries many people can also speak a fifth language, most notably Portuguese (around 18%). Luxembourg City is a very pleasant place to visit.
And you can of course get nice food here.
Luxembourg-Findel Airport is only about 8 kms from downtown but a taxi costs around 35 € - very expensive. However public buses 16 or 29 cost only 2 €, they're comfortable and take only five minutes more to get to the airport than a taxi. You can buy your ticket from the driver.
The terminal building at Luxembourg-Findel is nice and modern.
Some of the departing flights for this afternoon.
Although no check-in information was shown for my flight it was already available at Luxair's desks. While I was first pointed to the economy class line I could of course go to business class check-in. It took some time as the printer was jammed and the lady at check-in was not particularly friendly but I was more than happy to learn that I was the only passenger on this flight!
The check-in area.
While there was no priority security I was through it in three minutes.
Hahn Air's passengers get access to the Luxair lounge which was definitely not easy to find. When you're through security don't go down but turn right.
Meal options included cold meats, cheese, salad and pastries. No hot food - have lunch downtown before heading to the airport.
There was a selection of soft drinks.
Twelve types of liquors.
The wine selection included some good white Riesling and another white wine from Luxembourg, domaine Mathis Bastian rosé wine also from Luxembourg, Château Peymouton Saint-Émilion grand cru red wine from France and Crément Poll-Fabair sparkling wine from Luxembourg. No champagne, but this wasn't a problem at all.
Three types of bottled beer and Bofferding beer from tap was available. There were also three coffee machines.
The lounge is spacious and never felt crowded.
The gate opened at 15.30. Boarding was completed in five seconds as I was the only passenger.
A bus drove me to the plane.
The plane for today's flight was a Cessna 680A Citation Soveteign, registration number D-CHRE, first delivered in 2007.
The captain welcomed me as I got off from the bus. The plane from close-up.
The captain explained me all the safety features, told me our flight time would be 25 minutes and we would be flying at 23,000 feet. He also showed me where the drinks and the snacks were.
The plane has 8 passenger seats.
The seats are of course very comfortable.
The front half of the cabin.
The rear half of the cabin.
A large table can be folded out.
I just had some San Pellegrino water.
Individual lighting and ventilation.
Lavatories in the back of the plane.
Departure was at 15.45 and we taxied next to these Cargolux B747s.
We took off from runway 24. It felt like speeding up in a sport car and we were airborne after only a few seconds. There was a view over Luxembourg airport shortly after take-off.
A small airport on the way.
The Rhine and Cologne.
The Rhine-Ruhr region is very densely populated.
The FC Schalke 04 football stadium.
Approaching Düsseldorf Airport.
We landed at 16.20. I could see through the left side windows both airliners such as this Eurowings…
…and this private jet.
We didn't park at the main terminal but at the general aviation terminal.
The engines were stopped after which the very friendly captain answered all my questions regarding our itinerary.
A bus was waiting for me to drive me to the passenger terminal.
As I had almost three hours to my connecting Eurowings flight to Copenhagen I went to the Hugo Junkers lounge where I purchased access for 27,50 euros.
The choice of food included a soup, a simple hot meal and some sweets.
Drinks included soft drinks, a small choice of wines, liquors and beer, and there was also a coffee machine.
Nice views over the apron.
Thank you for reading my flight report.
Luxair Schengen Lounge
Luxembourg - LUX
Düsseldorf - DUS
Flying a business jet is certainly not an everyday experience for most of us. This flight was however very affordable and although it was a scheduled flight I was the only passenger, so it was almost like flying in a private jet - a once-in-a-lifetime experience that did not disappoint with the personal welcome from the captain, the beautiful cabin and the nice views.
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