The airline with the best average rating is Turkish Airlines with 8.1/10.
The average flight time is 3 hours and 22 minutes.More information
Report No: 2019-203E
Hi and welcome to this new series of reports which would consist 6 flights. Four of them would be on British Airways in the World/Euro Traveller Cabin and the other two would be exclusive reports that no hint would be given until the report is published.
The third flight of this series is actually a hint for the fourth flight, which is the exclusive report. There is a hint about the fourth flight in this report and it's hidden somewhere. However, the third flight would be a regular Turkish Airlines Economy Class report on their morning flight from Paris-CDG to Istanbul Atatürk onboard their A321. Also, this review would include a visit to the Star Alliance Lounge in Paris. This time I would tell you that this is not my last flight from/to Istanbul Atatürk Airport as the movement is delayed one more time.
Just a reminder that as I have already reported the first flight and a similar one to the second, I had used the chance to video report the first part of this serie for a test of YouTube flight-reports that I would start to post soon but things didn't go as well as I expected. It's really hard to capture good quality videos on a phone camera so I won't compile them as a video and present it to you, but I would share some parts of the flights as a video as well. Because that some photos were taken from the videos, they are not in their usual quality. However, these reports are complete Flight-Reports and I apologize for the bad photo qualities in some images and give the signal that I would start video-reporting soon as I have the chance to buy a motion camera. Once again, thanks for your understanding.
The routing for this serie would look like this
Pax for this flight
Business Class: %50-55
Economy Class: %95-100
I have completed my online check-in around 23 hours before the flight. As there were no better seats, I have sticked with my pre-reserved seat 10F.
The day before the flight, I was lucky to spot the incoming flight. TC-JSN would be the one taking me to Istanbul Atatürk. It would be the first time that I would board this specific A321.
Before I left the hotel, I have checked the FIDS for my flight and it was showing on time. I needed to proceed to Terminal 1 Check-in 3 to reclaim my boarding pass.
So, I have used the CDGVAL to go to Terminal 1, which most Star Alliance airlines' operate their flights.
FIDS - Our flight was the first Non-Schengen flight of the day
Check-in was really fast as I had used the Business Class lane. I was helped by the first available agent. I have asked for a window emergency exit seat but all 4 of them were occupied so I was asked if I wanted seat 8C. I accepted this offer as the flight was almost full. Later on, I was handed my boarding pass, my fast track invitation and I left the check-in area.
Boarding pass and fast track invitation
After the boarding pass check my automated machines I was in the airside of the terminal.
TK ads were present at the terminal
After clearing the passport control less than a minute, there were nobody in front of me, I have made my way to the lounge
As Turkish Airlines is one of the members of Star Alliance, I was invited to use the Star Alliance Lounge due to my Miles&Smiles Elite status. After scanning my boarding pass, the agent welcomed me to the lounge.
The lounge has two sections, one for Business Class & Star Gold passengers, and the other one for First Class passengers. I was able to use the Business Class lounge for that day.
The lounge was empty when I have entered.
The breakfast was present while I've arrived to the lounge
Cold bar - For Muslim passengers, it was a nice touch the lounge had cold charcuteries which were Halal.
Bread, jam, croissants, alcohol and fruits
Hot waffles were also available. There was a bottle of maple syrup for those passengers who wish.
The lounge also has a terrace for passengers who want to have fresh air or want to smoke.
Later on, the lounge got crowded but there were some empty areas that no one realized.
FIDS before leaving the lounge
As my flight was departing from concourse 4, I have headed there.
The walkway to the concourse
After arriving to the concourse, it was time to clear security. 2 out of 4 lanes were open that morning and the Acces1 fast track barcode only allowed me to skip 2 passengers as there were not many people waiting. I have cleared this check within 5 to 10 minutes.
After clearing security, our aircraft was visible
Today's gates were 45 and 46. Passengers in Economy class boarded at gate 45 and passengers who has the allowance to board in the priority lane boarded at gate 46. Boarding had started 45 minutes before departure with priority passengers at gate 46 and Group A passengers at gate 45.
Before boarding the aircraft, newspapers were available. They were mostly in Turkish and French.
While boarding, I was welcomed by the crew.
The seats in 5 row J class TK A321's are these Recaro seats. They were comfortable for a medium range flight like this. Of course the legroom in the emergency exit row was super.
Earphones were present in each seat.
Our route today
Before pushing back on time the safety video, Star Alliance and Istanbul Airport ads were shown. Just to remark, the old Lego safety video was played but some parts of the video were modified.
This aircraft was equipped with the Thales IFE system
Today I haven't watched a movie but listened to some music
And opened the route map
Also, I have looked at the content in the seat pocket starting with the safety card
Shop&Miles online shopping catalogue
The Skylife magazine
TK Europe route map
Our aircraft in the fleet section
And one of the TK ads in the magazine
As Turkish Airlines is a full service carrier, meals are complimentary. A breakfast service was made shortly after takeoff. There were no menus distributed. As you might notice from the barcode, the food was loaded in Atatürk Airport, the previous day. This was the first sign of cost-cutting.
When I received the tray I was shocked. The size of the tray had decreased and the offerings had also been decreased. The tray contained a hot dish, a brownie, olives, a butter, a strawberry jam and a small water. Bread was served warm.
There were no options for the service and the only available meal was the "Cheese and Ham Toast" and "Su Böreği" ( Turkish Pastry ) which was served with mushrooms. Although the portion was small, the meal tasted good.
Route map as the meal was distributed.
A nice view from the route map
While the trays were collected, a tea & coffee service was made by the cabin crew.
Later on, I had the chance to visit one of the lavatories. There were 3 lavatories in the back of the aircraft, which are designated for Economy class passengers. They were clean during my visit.
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A last view of the route map before landing
Later on we had arrived to Atatürk Airport 15 minutes before our scheduled departure time and we had parked to gate 201. After saying goodbye to the crew, I have left the aircraft.
The first visible aircraft was TC-JZF which was parked at gate 112 waiting for his flight to Trabzon.
And, last shots of our aircraft alongside with its sibling TC-JTF which was going to head to Lisbon.
Later on, I have headed to immigration and used the Turkish Airlines fast track lane. I have cleared this checkpoint within 5 minutes.
As maybe this is one of the last reports involving Atatürk Airport, I had taken photos of the arrival hall even though I didn't have checked baggage. As another company is going to operate the duty free in Istanbul Airport, there were nice offers in the duty free.
Another view from the arrivals hall
Later on, I have left the aircraft for my short stay in Istanbul.
This report has came to an end, thanks for reading and hope to see you in another report.
Even though this was a classic TK flight from Europe to Istanbul, it was my first international flight after the new cost cutting. The meal portions and the tray size had decreased significantly and the meals are the same for almost 10 years. Also I find loading the meal in Istanbul the day before a bit cheap as it shouldn't be considered as fresh. It is literally being heated twice. However, the Recaro seats was not comfortable as those Weber seats, they were OK and the exit row legroom was super. Also it's strange that TK doesn't offer free exit-row seating for their own Elites and they could either be purchased online or been assigned on a first come first served basis at the airport upon request. Although, the crew did their job perfectly, even though their English was not that good ( of course I contacted them in Turkish ). The airport experiences both in Paris and Istanbul were great and all the waiting times were acceptable. Also, we were lucky to arrive to a jet-bridge in Atatürk Airport as most of the time people need to deal with buses which wastes a lot of time. The Star Alliance Lounge in Paris, is also a lounge above average and contained a decent buffet for breakfast, also there are hidden parts of the lounge for those who want extra privacy and the terrace is a great place to have fresh air before the flight. For those interested, this specific flight of TK was cheaper than Pegasus from Orly and also cheaper than AtlasGlobal or Joon which operates from Charles de Gaulle.
(+) Check-in wait times
(+) Priorities respected during boarding
(-) Acces No1 only allows to skip some part of the line at the security check
Star Alliance Lounge Paris
(+) Nice breakfast options
(+) Halal options were also present those passengers who wish
(+) Quiet and enough seating areas
(+) Comfortable seating
(+) The terrace is a great place to get fresh air before your flight
(+) Exit row legroom and OK seats
(+) Tasty meals
(+) Nice to have a IFE like this with a USB port on a short flight
(+) IFE content
(+) On time departure and arrival
(+) Friendly crew
(-) Significant decrease at the quality of meal
(-) Repetitive meals
(+) Efficient passport check and waiting time
(+) Arrived to a jetbridge