The airline with the best average rating is Turkish Airlines with 8.1/10.
The average flight time is 2 hours and 38 minutes.More information
At first, please let me apologize for publishing this report only now, it has been more than a year overdue, I simply did not get enough time for it to be translated.
We spent the night at the Renaissance Polat and get back to the airport via taxi for a ridiculeous … 2€ for a 5 minutes drive. I booked the taxi 4H before the flight as the old Atatürk airport could easily be a nightmare to be accessed. So we left the hotel at 11H30A.
I did well as it took 45' just to enter the airport due to chaotic and poorly organized pre-checks.
Also a mess was to find the RJ desk, the screens did not show where it was and the airport simply crowded. By the time we got to the counter, it was already 12H30 .
The check in itself took another 30'' as the agent had to verify my credit card (third country booking : booked in France, departure from Turkey to Jordan. This always triggers additional checks). He was unsure with the process and needed to call the Amman offices a few times. Half an hour later we are finally checked in and good to go :)
We were happy to be able to use the fast lane as the regular ones were crowded. The border police control went very quick and well but the inspection took again, forever. Eventually, we got fully airside at 01:30PM
The Millenium lounge is also not close to the checks, we arrived there by 01:45PM and boarding time was scheduled for 02:25P, a good hour before the scheduled departure time. That didn't left a lot of time. We decided to latest leave the lounge by 02;20 in case of any additional unexpected thing :)
Atatürk was really crowded. Those days are now gone :)
Some overpriced Turkish bread and food on the way to the lounge :
We were warmly greeted at the entrance and given the access code for the wi-fi. I have not seen such a hassle to connect for a long time. At first, select the wi-fi network, then enter the network password : Cannakale, then enter user name : Ganziatep2 and then, the user password : XdcxXY99b47g33PAQ22. Not impressed :(
Tried on I-Pad, I-phone and laptop, it never worked. I gave up after a few tries as our boarding gate changed and was now announced at the far end of the terminal building. My mom went outside to have a quick smoke while I remained in the lounge to snap a few pictures.
The lounge entrance:
And two hot dishes:
Given how good Turkish deserts are, this is rather disappointing:
Tea and coffee stations:
Unfortunately the tables were not often cleared from food remains and the lounge was clearly understaffed:
I could kill for Turkish cheese and kasir. Kasir is a wheat salad made with a special pomegranate kind of dressing amongst others. This is a traditional country side dish and is a delight to eat. But not that day as is was lucke warm and should be served really … cold. Uneatable. The cheese was low quality I almost left the plate untouched. Not to mention the rosé wine that was ways too hot.
Note the spoon as there was no forks left.
We left ways before we had planned to do.
The boarding room was ample enough, actually even oversized for the 100 passengers of today's Embraer
A 320 Jazeera and 773 TK:
Our Embraer's tail:
Onur Air A320 while a TK A319 arrives in front of Atatürk's famous boneyard:
TK A321with a special livery and another just landing:
Turkish almost everywhere:
Boarding started very early, at 02H30PM for a 03H25 departure. But as the plane arrived early I imagine that the ground crew didn't want to waste time. Business is called first but nobody really checked who was eligible. A nice mess at the gate :)
The leading steward gives a very warm welcome and as I took the following two picture, a security officer seated in 3A greats me with a loud "NO PHOTO". I explained I am taking pictures for my own pleasure and they will stay private (ok, not really true but .. who cares? ^^). He then said ok but I kept a low profile in snapping more pics.
It is a real business class, so different from the traditional Eurobusiness we are used to in Europe:
A pillow was at every seat while blankets were on demand:
Arabic coffee was offered upon seating:
Followed by a choice of juices:
And a water bottle:
I was impressed by the first three rounds of drinks, this everything while the plane was boarding. It was followed by a newspaper service.
I was a bit intrigued by this 737-500 I had never seen before:
Google being our best friend, it belongs to TARON Aviation, an Armenian airline (in the meantime, already gone ^^)
Two of the last A340-300 in TK's fleet at that time (also gone) and the 735 again:
Red tails everywhere :)
We pushed back on time and drove close to this 340. I love this plane!
The boneyard again:
A330 Cargo followed by a 737-900ER :
330 and 738:
And off we go:
This should be IST (the soon to be new airport!):
And U turn over the Asian part of Istanbul:
Istanbul is huge!!
A few random winglet shoots plus some aerial views:
The service was about to start. Note the folding tray and the front seat that doesn't look clean at all.
The service started with a warm towel:
Followed by the table dressing:
It was an all in one tray:
Focus on the main dish:
While it was perfectly adequate, two years before on the same route, a full hot meal was offered with a choice between three entrees.
This is still very good but sadly, the cost cutting also reached RJ famous J class. The meat ball, samossa and bread were all served hot but still, it is not a hot entree :(
Lunch with a view:
We are now leaving Turkey:
Jordan valley and the Sea of Galilee at upper part of the pictures:
Followed by Amman:
As we leave Amman behind, the landscape becomes more arid:
This is one of my favorite picture:
Heading back to the airport:
This E135 was chartered by the NATO and half of the Fly Jordan fleet:
The terminal building:
And the second half of Fly Jordan's fleet:
The crew bids a warm farewell and after buying our (expensive!) visa -40JD > 50€, picking up the luggage and locating our driver, the holidays can start!
IST was overcrowded and at that time the new airport was largely overdue. This is now past ;)
RJ was great, the cost cutting in the catering a bit sad but still, the meal was perfectly adequate.
AMM airport is really nice plus this afternoon arrival meant an off peak time, meaning zero wait at immigration.
Thank you for reading, the return should be online soon!