Review of Middle East Airlines flight Beirut London in Economy

Flight ME 201
Class Economy
Seat 35F
Aircraft Airbus A320
Flight time 05:05
Take-off 09 Feb 19, 07:30
Arrival at 09 Feb 19, 10:35
ME   #1 out of 131 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 44 reviews
CaptainElie
By 1158
Published on 23rd May 2019

Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome on board this Middle East Airlines flight bound for London Heathrow. Our flying time will be 5 hours and 10 mins operated by an Airbus A320, please fasten your seat-belts and enjoy this flight-report!

Aircraft: Airbus A320-232
Registration: OD-MRS
Departure Airport: Beirut Hariri Airport
Arrival Airport: London Heathrow


It is a rainy morning in Beirut, and it is 5:45AM, here I find myself at the airport to begin my journey to London, noting that this is Lebanon's only commercial airport. There is my bird! OD-MRS. I personally call it Oh! The Mrs.


photo img_4774

Naturally before starting my flights from Beirut, I routinely go to the Cedar Lounge, where I can find a variety of Lebanese and Intercontinental breakfast in the morning, you really don't feel in an airport, but maybe having breakfast in a very luxurious hotel! Well done MEA! 
 


photo img_4775-75515

And the famous Lebanese Labneh! So refreshing.


photo img_4777

I am not going to make you hungry right now, not just yet, wait till you see MEA's generous economy class meal!

Another shot of the ramp before heading to gate 13.


photo img_4778

Here she is! Getting refuelled and energised prior her flight to London. Such a damsel this MRS! 


photo img_4780

Boarding started, respecting Sky Priority lanes. One last shot of her sister OD-MRN (nicknamed Nancy) before stepping on board.


photo img_4782

Welcome on board Cedarjet! Naturally MEA's boarding music is running in the morning, relaxing and calm.


photo img_4786

Off we go, push and start approved, engines will start after pushback is complete.
And there we are taxiing to the runway, winds were calm, MEA201 had clearance for runway 21 for departure.


photo img_4795

Wait a sec, that's MEA's youngest big sister! OD-MEE bound for Paris CDG. I wish I was on board this bird.


photo img_4800

One last shot of this beauty (aircraft also featured by Jamil Itani on his flight from DXB to BEY).


photo img_4804

V1, Rotate, positive rate gear up! We're airborne!


photo img_4806

While entering the Lebanese airspace, we're leaving this beautiful country behind.


photo img_4814photo img_4815

One other wide angle shot.


photo img_4823

Beirut is in sight, Good-bye beautiful city, will miss you!
And there we are climbing and soaring above the clouds.


photo img_4832

Enter text here…


photo img_4836

Just before reaching our cruising altitude, breakfast was served! I opted for the Omelette this time, I usually don't eat eggs on a plane, but coming from MEA's catering and from Beirut Airport, I know how good they are and how much they care about about feeding their valued customers.
 That's for economy class! Such a generous meal for a medium-haul, don't you all agree? 


photo img_4839

After the meal, I decided to watch a movie, and then a second, noting that MEA offers around 25 international movies, and around 5 arabic movies, in addition to TV series, etc. This can be improved in the point of view of a frequent traveler, but for a short flight like this, it isn't really an issue. Only thing is that the choice is limited, but they offer the last released movies, alongside with a few classics.
A view of Switzerland below.


photo img_4843

Approaching London to land, the flight almost comes to an end, but London that day was extremely windy! Many go arounds that day.


photo img_4840photo img_4861

And there a shot of London!


photo img_4870

And here we are in terminal 3, parked.


photo img_4877

One last shot of the MRS! Good bye MEA, it has been a pleasure.


photo img_4879
See more

Verdict

Middle East Airlines

9.5/10
Cabin9.5
Cabin crew10.0
Entertainment/wifi8.5
Meal/catering10.0

Cedar Lounge

10.0/10
Comfort10.0
Meal/catering10.0
Entertainment/wifi10.0
Services10.0

Beirut - BEY

7.8/10
Efficiency7.5
Access8.5
Services8.5
Cleanliness6.5

London - LHR

9.1/10
Efficiency8.0
Access8.5
Services10.0
Cleanliness10.0

Conclusion

The flight ran extremely smooth and was very beautiful, the timings were very efficient because once you land in London you still have a full day ahead of you! The food was so good, both in the lounge and on board, noting that the caterer for both is MEA's, it really is good. Honestly I believe that MEA has the best food in terms of taste and generosity in economy class, business class they are also good but some minor things can be improved.
You may think I am being generous with the ratings, but I really challenge you all to try a flight with MEA, and with another flag carrier, and you let me know! In terms of cabin, MEA will be upgrading their cabins once they start receiving their new NEO aircraft, I cannot say anything negative since seats were comfortable and clean overall, good enough for a 5 hours flight. Anything over 5 hours I will start down rating this cabin. Entertainment on this flight was adequate and more than enough for this type of flight, and only considers IFE and boarding music, but not WiFi since the aircraft are not equipped with such yet. The cedar lounge is superb, no comment! Please note that the ratings are reflective on this specific flight, and only this flight.

Information on the route Beirut (BEY) London (LHR)

1 Comments

  • Comment 504102 by
    KévinDC TEAM GOLD 4837 Comments

    Hi CaptainElie, thanks for this nice and well-written report.

    Great shot of BEY on departure...the water looks beautiful. You also got some great views of London on arrival, which is always something I love about flying into LHR. One of the perks on being put into holding patterns awaiting landing is nice views.

    The lounge does look quite nice and the portion of the meal is quite generous, as you mention. The IFE system looks to be a bit old, but then again, most European carriers flying between BEY and Europe don't have IFE at all, with the exception of BA. I believe BA fly their Club World-equipped mid-haul A321s between between BEY and LHR, which also have IFE and have fully flat seats in J.

    You may think I am being generous with the ratings, but I really challenge you all to try a flight with MEA, and with another flag carrier, and you let me know!

    The beauty of FR is everyone is entitled to his/her opinion--each person's experience is personal and the ratings should reflect that. It's good that you are justifying the ratings and that is a good argument, though, again there's the example of BA mid-haul A321s on similar routes, which does offer a similar hard-product experience--or better in the case if the J cabin. Often, when I see 10/10 across the board (which is not the case here, but is often seen on MEA reports) it is difficult to take seriously because it means that it is the best possible product on a route and better than all competition. Sometimes that's true on some routes--sometimes it's not.

    That being said, I'm understand your explanations of ratings for the flight to a certain degree, but I don't quite understand the 10s across the board for the lounge. For example, you rated the Services 10/10--to me that would mean there is a Spa and other "exceptional" types of serviced like that, which you do not normally see in a business class lounge. Maybe there are and you just didn't mention them?

    Thanks for sharing!

Login to post a comment.