Review of Turkish Airlines flight Istanbul Antalya in Business

Airline Turkish Airlines
Flight TK2128
Class Business
Seat 02A
Aircraft Boeing 737-800
Flight time 01:35
Take-off 24 Dec 18, 13:40
Arrival at 24 Dec 18, 15:15
TK   #12 out of 124 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 523 reviews
eryorulmaz
By GOLD 553
Published on 9th January 2019

A very warm welcome to all Flight-Report members and visitors for this exclusive series of Flight-Report's which was an easy way having a Star Alliance Gold status. In addition, in this series I had the chance to experience the brand new Turkish Airlines Domestic Lounge at Istanbul Airport on the first day of its operation. This exclusive series would include 15 flights ( 14 on Turkish Airlines & 1 on SunExpress ) and 13 of these reports are flights to/from Istanbul Airport in Business Class. The other two flights are also domestic flights which are on Economy Class and they are not reports from/to Istanbul Airport. More details could be found in the routing section. 


The first report would be a short flight to Antalya on one of the brand new Boeing 737-800 aircraft that TK has in its fleet. Turkish Airlines offered promotional Business class fares ( low as €39 - one way ) and give 5000 status miles per flight so I decided to do this mileage run based on Business Class. On this report, I would give a brief detail of the Turkish Airlines Lounge Corner which was available until the brand new lounge had opened. The lounge would be covered in the upcoming reports in this serie. 


The routing would look like this. All reports except #2 would include lounge reviews as well.


Routing

  • #1 TK 2124 ISL to AYT ( J ) 737-800 You are here
  • #2 XQ 9293 AYT to ADB ( Y ) 737-800 Past
  • #3 TK 2031 ADB to ISL ( J ) 737-800 Past
  • #4 TK 2124 ISL to ESB ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #5 TK 2125 ESB to ISL ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #6 TK 2048 ISL to TZX ( J ) A320-200 Coming soon
  • #7 TK 2049 TZX to ISL ( J ) A320-200 Coming soon
  • #8 TK 2030 ISL to ADB ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #9 TK 2031 ADB to ISL ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #10 TK 2124 ISL to ESB ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #11 TK 2125 ESB to ISL ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #12 TK 2218 ISL to GZT ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #13 TK 2219 GZT to ISL ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #14 TK 2030 ISL to ADB ( J ) 737-800 Coming soon
  • #15 TK 2337 ADB to IST ( Y ) 777-300ER Coming soon

Pax for this flight

Business Class: %100
Economy Class: %80-85 


ONLINE CHECK-IN


I have completed my online check-in 24 hours before takeoff.


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My seat was already reserved when I've booked my flight and there were no other available seats so I haven't changed my seat.


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The morning of my flight, I have used one of the Havaist shuttles to reach the airport. These shuttles are convenient and they have shuttles for all flights departing from ISL and they have 5 different lines that serve different areas of the city.


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Interior of these buses


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While onboard the Havaist bus, I have spotted the incoming flight from Antalya. Today it would be TC-JVM which would take me to Antalya.


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Photos of the airport from the highway


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Entrance - Police checkpoint


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Massive carpark that hasn't been opened yet


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Only the top level of one of the carparks is open at the moment. The carpark is free until the 28th of February.


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Istanbul Airport - ISL


The terminal


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The Havaist bus which took me here


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Now, it's time to enter the building


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The arrivals level hasn't been opened yet


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A view of the check-in hall


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FIDS


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At that moment, there were two check-in desks open and no special desk for Business Class; one of the employees helped me printing my boarding passes from the self check-in machines.


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TK Ticket office


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The international departures area - Passport check. Until the grand movement, all international passengers clear security at the domestic departures area and proceed to the temporary passport booths to access the international departures area.


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The domestic departures area. Security was a breeze as no one was in front of me.


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There are still stores that hasn't been opened yet. The photos of the open stores are available in the first ISL report which I've posted in the last months.


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International area, quiet at this time


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And, the domestic area


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That day, the Turkish Airlines Domestic Lounge wasn't opened yet; so Turkish Airlines contracted a café for the needs of their priority passengers. They have named the temporary lounge area " Turkish Airlines Corner "


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Turkish Airlines CORNER DOMESTIC - Istanbul Airport


The brand of the café could sound similar to some of you who have flown from TAV Airports. Seferi is one of the brands of BTA ( TAV group ) and has several cafés at Atatürk Airport as well. The café is located at the ground level which remote gates G1 are located.


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Turkish Airlines offered a sandwich/salad, a soft drink, a bottle of water and unlimited tea/coffee to their passengers having lounge access. The sandwiches could be also heated by the café employees upon request.


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My selection for the day


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Newspapers were also available at that time


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I have taken my coffee in a plastic cup as I would continue to enjoy it while wandering around.


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Boarding pass


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GATE AREA & BOARDING


After finishing my sandwich and my ice tea and taking my coffee from the corner, I have headed back to the first level to reach my gate.


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The elevators to the lounge. For those interested, I would cover the brand new Turkish Airlines Lounge Domestic in reports #4, #6, #8, #10, #12 & #14 in this serie.


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FIDS - Like most airports Istanbul Airport would be one of the airports that announce the flight gates several minutes before boarding.


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The wheels of our aircraft could be seen from this photo. Gate G10 hasn't got a good angle from the terminal.


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The waiting area near gates G8, G9, G10 & G11.


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Our gate for the day.


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Boarding had started 35 minutes before boarding. Priority passengers boarded the aircraft from the center lane, while Economy class passengers boarded the aircraft from the lane that was located on the left side of the gate.


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Our aircraft from the jetbridge.


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TK 2128 Istanbul Airport to ANTALYA AIRPORT


After being welcomed by the cabin crew, I have headed to my seat. I have also taken a pillow from the overhead bins.


The seats are the usual TK short/mid haul Business Class seats. They are comfortable and they are perfectly suitable for short journey like this one.


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Overhead panel


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As this aircraft ( TC-JVM ) was equipped with the new Thales IFE system, the seats also had power supplies. However, the IFE was shut down for this flight and the personal screens didn't function.


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Gate G10


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The construction of the airport mosque was visible from our parking stand.


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After boarding was completed, the cabin crew handed welcome drinks for Business Class passengers. 


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And when the doors were closed, nuts were distributed alongside with the menus.


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The menu for todays flight


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When we started to push back


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The safety video was screened at the common screen located at row 1.


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Later on, Star Alliance videos were shown as well.


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Also, the commercial of Turkish Airlines featuring Dr. Oz


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And, the last video: Istanbul Airport advertisement


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Now, it's time to take some shots of the apron. Starting with one of the ground control towers.


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Concourse F


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The ATC tower is visible


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Concourses D&E


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Concourses C&D


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Concourse B


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Some gates at concourse B still needs some work


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Concourse A


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And, we are on the other side of the terminal


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Turkish Technic hangar


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Some construction going on


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Turkish Do&Co catering facility


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Çelebi ground handling facility


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Service vehicles


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We are almost at the runway after a long taxi


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Entering runway 16R


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Massive ATC tower


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And here we go


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Facilities


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The terminal


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The roads leading to Istanbul Airport


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A last shot of the terminal


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Taşoluk district


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Industrial area near Lake Büyükçekmece


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Beylikdüzü area


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Guess which airport is this?


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Shortly after takeoff, drink orders were taken by the cabin crew and meals were started to be distributed.


Today's meal

Potpourri of Seafood
Grilled Lamb Chops
Profiteroles 


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Izmit Gulf


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Bread was distributed while I enjoyed my meal.


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Today's drink: Homemade ayran


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When I've finished my meal, I've asked for a tea from the cabin crew.


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Seat pocket content - I would review the seat pocket content in one of the future report in this serie.


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Photos before landing



First view of AYT; Terminal 1


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We had landed on time.


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Antalya ATC; not impressive like ISL


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Red Wings A321


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SunExpress, Freebird, Corendon aircrafts. These three airlines dominates the operation here in AYT


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Terminal 1 - Mostly filled with SunExpress aircrafts


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Later on we have parked to gate 5 and the first flight of my mileage run had came to an end.


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Baggage claim area at AYT Terminal 3.


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Later on, I have left the airport and the first report of this serie had came to an end.


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There would be no coming up sections for the first 14 reports of this series as the upcoming flight could be seen from the routing section at the beginning of the report.

See more

Verdict

Turkish Airlines

8.2/10
Cabin9.5
Cabin crew8.0
Entertainment6.0
Meal/catering9.5

Istanbul - ISL

10.0/10
Efficiency10.0
Access10.0
Services10.0
Cleanliness10.0

Antalya - AYT

8.5/10
Efficiency9.0
Access9.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness8.0

Conclusion

Although, there is no special thing to mention on this short flight, the only thing that annoyed me was that the IFE system was shut down for this flight even though Mr. Bilal Ekşi ( CEO of TK ) had announced that the Planet IFE system would be turned on on all TK flights including domestic ones. Otherwise the meal and the seat was perfect and the crew did their job in the regular way.

As I want to expedite the process of writing this serie, there would be no +'s or -'s for reports in this serie. However, there could be some exceptions.

Related

3 Comments

  • Comment 484044 by
    hometoyyz 405 Comments

    Hello Eryorulmaz, and thanks for sharing this unique flight-report. I was excited to see how TK looks on a short-haul like this, but then reading your introduction, even more excited that you got to fly through the new Istanbul airport so early, and the first day for the new lounge. Fascinating!

    Wow… that is quite the mileage run deal, and suddenly makes this “routing” make sense.

    The new airport looks lovely. And nice that there things were so quick. I imagine this will change in the near future. I guess one can’t complain too much about the compromise of the Lounge Corner given circumstances.

    Turkish narrowbody business class is such an upgrade over the Euro-norm. I hope they stay with that approach. Disappointing the IFE wasn’t active, but glad they’re fixing that — are there PTVs (I presume flip-up?) or is it only shared overhead video on these narrowbodies?

    I remember fondly that fresh raspberry PDB from my TK longhaul sectors. Delicious. I’m impressed that TK not only offers a good-looking meal offering on this short flight, but a full menu. Of course, the airline does hang its hat on its catering service, and rightfully so.

    It’s weird seeing an airport that big that empty, both inside and out.

    As expected, the meal service looks fantastic. Lamb is a personal favourite, so I may have some bias.

    Thanks for sharing, and looking forward to the rest of this series!

    • Comment 484073 by
      eryorulmaz GOLD AUTHOR 74 Comments

      Thanks again for your comment and welcome to this report,

      "I was excited to see how TK looks on a short-haul like this, but then reading your introduction, even more excited that you got to fly through the new Istanbul airport so early, and the first day for the new lounge. Fascinating!"
      - As Istanbul is my hometown, I was waiting for this airport to open and flown there in my first holiday which was in November in Economy. I was excited too to see the new domestic lounge.
      "Wow… that is quite the mileage run deal, and suddenly makes this “routing” make sense."
      - As I've seen the promo meal, I have just bought my tickets and started to make plans to be Star Gold again which I lost in February 2015. It was a superb deal that TK regretted doing it because they were almost 1000 passengers that got an Elite Plus status for €600 only doing these mileage runs. At the moment I'm M&S Elite and I'm close to be M&S Elite Plus so you could expect me to fly Star Alliance this year.
      "The new airport looks lovely. And nice that there things were so quick. I imagine this will change in the near future. I guess one can’t complain too much about the compromise of the Lounge Corner given circumstances."
      - I won't forget the beginning period of the new airport which it was quiet and only 5-8 flights departed every single day. Unfortunately, ISL would lose it's quietness after the grand-movement but as the terminal is massive, it won't be bad as Atatürk Airport. The lounge corner was acceptable as the offering is better than most TK domestic lounges, which doesn't have hot selections except a soup.
      "Turkish narrowbody business class is such an upgrade over the Euro-norm. I hope they stay with that approach. Disappointing the IFE wasn’t active, but glad they’re fixing that — are there PTVs (I presume flip-up?) or is it only shared overhead video on these narrowbodies?"
      - They would stay with that approach in narrow body Business class as TK is an airline that mainly concentrates on continental travel more than regional travel. IFE is active on some domestic flight and not on some. There are PTV's in the new 737-800 aircraft, the overhead monitors are also available to show the safety video while the IFE screen should be stowed for takeoff.
      "I remember fondly that fresh raspberry PDB from my TK longhaul sectors. Delicious. I’m impressed that TK not only offers a good-looking meal offering on this short flight, but a full menu. Of course, the airline does hang its hat on its catering service, and rightfully so."
      - It's impressive that TK decreased the service level in Economy class on all sectors but improved their service in Business Class. In the past they only did offered a cold starter on domestic flights but now it's nice to see dishes that US carriers couldn't offer on transcontinental flights in their First Cabin. They have also added variety of new dishes to their menus which was same for the past few years.

    • Comment 484074 by
      eryorulmaz GOLD AUTHOR 74 Comments

      "It’s weird seeing an airport that big that empty, both inside and out."
      - I'll miss these days.
      "As expected, the meal service looks fantastic. Lamb is a personal favourite, so I may have some bias."
      - The lamb is one of my favorite dishes at TK as well. It's nice to have dish with red-meat onboard a short flight like this but vegetarians won't agree with me. Just to note that TK doesn't offer special meals on domestic flights.

      Thanks again and hope to see you in another report.

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