Most Icelandair flights are scheduled to offer quick connections for those who travel between Europe (Amsterdam, Bergen, Berlin, Copenhagen, Düsseldorf, Dublin, Frankfurt, Geneva, Glasgow, Gothenburg, Hamburg, Helsinki, London LHR and LGW, Manchester, Munich, Oslo, Paris ORY and CDG, Stockholm, Zurich) and America (Anchorage, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Kansas City, Minneapolis, New York EWR and JFK, Orlando, Philadelphia, Portland, San Francisco, Seattle, Tampa and Washington in the US, Edmonton, Halifax, Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver in Canada) or vica versa.
Flights leave Europe typically around 13.00 or 14.00 local time; arrive to Iceland three hours later, around 15.00 or 16.00; leave for the US and Canada at about 17.00 and get there around 19.00 depending on the distance and the local time zone. The same planes fly back to Iceland at about 21.00 local time, arrive to Iceland around 05.00 or 06.00 next morning and fly to Europe between 07.00 and 08.00.
So many of Icelandair's passengers are on connecting flights, and only a smaller part of them are tourists visiting Iceland (although many take advantage of the stopover program) or Icelanders travelling abroad. Those who live in Iceland and want to travel home from Europe have to leave their destinations in the early afternoon. There are only a couple of flights that allow to fly from Europe to Iceland in the evening every day of the week, such as from Copenhagen (departure at 22.30, arrival at 23.45) or London-Heathrow (departure at 20.50, arrival at 22.55). Times can of course change depending on winter/summer schedule.
I arrived to London from Japan at 13.15 so I had over seven hours before my flight to Iceland. This is a long time to wait so I booked a room for day use at a very good rate at the Hyatt Place London Heathrow Airport from 14.00 to 18.00 It proved to be a good idea so I could sleep a bit after the very long flight and I was refreshed for the evening flight home.
Icelandair uses Terminal 2 at Heathrow.
Check-in is in Zone B.
I almost always have a very good experience here: check-in and security are reasonably quick and the crowd is not too big inside
I find the terminal building itself very nice
A lot of departures as every evening
Icelandair does not have its own lounge at Heathrow; Saga (business) class passengers have access to the Aer Lingus lounge.
There's a view from the Aer Lingus lounge on an… Aer Lingus plane
The lounge is spacious and was not crowded when I was there.
As it is typical to many lounges in Europe the only available food were soup and small snacks.
Guinness and Bailey's are of course available
You can of course have coffee, tea and soft drinks as well
Icelandair's evening flight usually departs from gate B41 which is a very long way from the main terminal area. Allow at least 10 to 15 minutes to get there.
Singapore Airlines' A380 is usually right next door
Boarding was on-time. Our aicraft today was TF-ISS, built in 1996 and called Dyngjufjöll.
While Icelandair used to offer a three-class configuration with economy, premium economy and business it now offers a two-class configuration with economy and business called Saga class. What are the differences between economy and business on Icelandair?
Business class check-in Check-in luggage included Priority security Lounge access (the Aer Lingus lounge for Heathrow, the very nice Saga Lounge in Iceland) Priority boarding A 2+2 configuration with US Domestic First class type seats. Larger screens Good quality headphones Welcome drink A good quality hot meal (two-course between Iceland and Europe and three-course between Iceland and America) All alcoholic and soft drinks Free wi-fi Priority deplaning
Icelandair business class seats. These seats are large and comfortable and certainly much better than the intra-European business class seats offered on short-haul Air France, British Airways or Lufthansa flights but are considerably less comfortable than the business class seats the same airlines offer on their long-haul Transatlantic flights. Icelandair has 7 rows of business class seats with the first row having seats only on the left side so there are a total of 26 seats.
Note that legroom is slightly less good than one would expect but it's perfectly fine for a flight within Europe.
The screen is larger than in economy class. Note that bulkhead seats 1A, 1C, 2D and 2F have fold-out screens that are the same size as in economy.
Good quality headphone were distributed
Orange juice offered as a welcome drink - no alcohol.
I like Icelandair's safety video
The flight map before departure
An expected flight time of two hours and 40 minutes was announced. Push-back which was at 20.55 and take off at 21.15 or a scheduled departure time of 20.35. There was a lot of traffic waiting to be cleared for take off from runway 27R.
The seatbelt signs were on for 30 minutes after take-off. Meal order was taken shortly later and a hot towel was offered
Here's the dinner menu
The same in Icelandic
The wine menu
This is how dinner was served
Arctic char with creamed wild mushrooms, salt-baked root vegetables and Icelandic pearl barley. It was very good
Cheesecake with berry sauce
Icelandair's in-flight entertainment offers 55 different movies
The movie I was watching
The audio selection has 497 different audio tracks
We were near Vestmannaeyjar, a group of islands off the south coast of Iceland when I finished the movie
Landing was at 23.57 for a scheduled arrival time of 23.35. The flight map after landing
Thank you for reading my flight report. Please feel free to comment.
Aer Lingus Gold Circle Lounge
London - LHR
Reykjavík - KEF
Icelandair's business class is a very good product to travel between Europe and Iceland. It offers proper business class seats and all the services you expect, all this at a reasonable price.
If you plan however to travel between America and Europe (or vica versa) note that this business class does not offer the same comfort as Air France, American, British Airways, Delta, Lufthansa or Swiss on their wide-body aircrafts, although prices are also usually considerably lower. It is however of course much better than premium economy offered by the above airlines. My suggestion is anyway that you take advantage of the stopover possibility and you break your journey in Iceland.
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