Finally I found some free time to write one of my 2 flight reports about my experience with SmartWings!
Since I'm still undergraduate student in the last year, I couldn't fly at February as I wanted. But then, I realized that I can fly in April, We had more than 2 weeks free!
Pre flight experience - TLV airport
TLV airport entrance, gate 32:
Ben Gurion statue in the terminal entrance:
I went to the check in area, since It was Saturday, the queues for the security were short, but since SmartWings doesn't offer web check in for flight from/to TLV, I needed to wait in the queue for the check in and select the seat. I asked the ground crew to seat in the exit row, row 28, since I traveled with one friend and 2 seats could be nice choice, but they didn't understood me. In fact, We had 2 seats but in row 27… You'll see how bad those seats were.
Of course, the immigration process was fast also, because We have biometric passports. Since It was Saturday, the hand baggage security check was also very fast.
Here's my boarding pass:
As You can see, I wrote in the flight report that I sat in seat 27B, because I replaced the seat with my friend.
Some photos during the way to the duty free area:
The entrance to the duty free area:
Since my last visit in TLV airport in October 2018, the electric store was replaced. In the past there was a shop that called A.L.M. (In Hebrew We pronounce It Alam), now We have touch It, which operated by Office Depot.
Here some photos from the new shop:
I went to the WC near to the shop:
As You can see, It was clean, but You can see the rust! I always say It, they must improve the WC in the terminal.
The way to the new gate area, E gates:
The dining area:
I was surprised to see that some of the restaurant were open! In my last flight in Saturday, I found only place to eat in the airport.
I wanted to eat something, but I wasn't too hungry, so I went to some coffee shop in the central square, I attached some photos in order to show the prices:
I bought Croissant with chocolate and coffee, the price was 34 ILS/INS or almost 9 Euro / 10 USD. In fact, Aroma is better, but they are have kosher branch in the airport, so It was close.
While waiting to my coffee, I took some photos of the duty free area:
And here's my expensive coffee and Croissant:
I took some photos of the main square:
And I even recorded some video!
Some photos from the horrible dotted windows of the terminal:
Photo of another duty free shop:
I must say that after visiting in 20 airports approximately, in my opinion, TLV airport offers the best duty free.
It was time to go to the gate:
I received this message while waiting in the boarding area:
Our jet bridge:
Some jet bridge controls:
Flight experience, TLV to PRG
Aircraft information: Boeing 737-9GJER OK-TSI Sent to SpiceJet in December 2011 Sent to Travel Service in May 2015 The aircraft was 7.5 years old when I traveled
During the boarding I gave to the flight attendant a request to visit in the cockpit, and until now, I'm still waiting for answer… ;)
My seat, 27B:
The seat couldn't be reclined, and as You can see, the legroom wasn't brilliant as well… (And I'm really short, 1.65 meters) At least, no one sat next to us.
Strange thing - in any flight I had in the past, there wasn't problem with putting my handbag under the seat in front of me, I don't know why, but the crew insisted that I'll store my bag in the overhead compartment…
Some photos during taxing:
It was very awkward to take photos from the middle seat, but since there wasn't seat in the left hand side, It was possible somehow.
Take off video (4k available):
Shortly after take off, over Tel Aviv:
Sunset, over the sea:
Cabin photos in cruise altitude:
I like the mood light in the new Boeing aircraft, It's very nice.
Flight magazine, safety card and food menu:
Approximately one hour after the take off, the crew served glass of water:
Some time after, the crew offered drinks and food, You can see the prices:
I bought coke zero:
I went to the toilets:
As You can see, It was OK, but the toilets are very tiny and they located under the tail, I found It strange, since in all my flights with Boeing 737NG, the toilets were after the last seat row.
During the flight, I tried to use the streaming application of SmartWings, but It couldn't work:
There's no entertainment options, no IFE, no overhead screens and no Wifi.
Landing video (4K available):
After landing in PRG airport, waiting in the gate:
Another strange thing - The crew requested from the passengers in the back to deboard first. In my opinion, It was just slower than let everyone deboard.
After flight experience - PRG airport
Aircraft view from the terminal:
Welcome to Prague!
The queue to the immigration was very slow. I waited almost 30 minutes!
Baggage claim area:
Here also I needed to wait some another 10 minutes, even I waited 30 minutes in the immigration queue. I never experienced such a slow airport in Europe.
Thank for reading! Soon I'll write the flight report for the flight from PRG to TLV.
Tel Aviv - TLV
Prague - PRG
I found that flight with SmartWings will be cheaper than flight with Elal, so I went for this option. However, after I tried SmartWings, I can say that if I'll fly to Prague again, defenitly I'll choose Elal and not SmartWings, even though They are cheaper and using newer aircraft on this route. If I try to find some positive points for SmartWings over Elal, the terminal will play a role without any doubt. While Elal using Terminal 1 for the flight to PRG (Terminal 3 serves the inbound flights, since isn't possible yet to do so in Terminal 1), SmartWings using Terminal 3, which has jet bridges and better duty free and dining area. First of all, the service isn't great, I can't say anything bad, but I found Elal crew to be better most of the time. For example, I mentioned the request to visit the cockpit. In any airline I received an answer, whether It was a negative one or a positive one, but at least I received some answer, here I was ignored totally. In addition, the cabin is very tight, some of the seat rests show It's age, the legroom wasn't good. The entertainment score is zero, since the application wasn't functioning and there's no other options. I gave SmartWings 8 in the Meal score, since the prices of the food on board aren't high and reasonable. I'll mention again that It's not possible to use the web check in when You're flying from/to Israel, so It's another disadvantage.
TLV airport was good as usual, I was happy to see that some restaurant were open in Saturday, and not just one coffee shop. They should improve the clean in the airport, but in any other aspect, the experience was very good, as usual.
On the other hand ,PRG airport isn't so great... Everything is very slow, each process may take a lot of time, compared to other airports that I visited in the last years like VIE, FRA, etc. The airport was clean and easy to navigate, You can find some places to eat even in 10PM, there is car rental of course, nothing special but nothing bad to say. Overall, They lost most of the score due to the inefficiency.
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