The airline with the best average rating is KLM with 7.4/10.
The average flight time is 3 hours and 40 minutes.More information
We spent the night at the Renaissance Polat as we did on the outbound. It is again a mess to enter the airport, we needed a good 20 minutes to access the terminal. The checking was not open yet but would be in 15''.
We opted to wait in front of the Sky Priority check in desk.
ISX was very crowded and more or less a zoo, bags everywhere and people seated on the floor. Sorry for the blurry picture…
There were unattended bags mostly everywhere and it doesn't seemed to be a problem. Watch the red bag in the middle of the picture, it stayed there for a good 20 minutes with police walking around that absolutely didn't care.
Security and police checks were expedited in no time, thanks to the fast pass. Airside it was a bit quieter.
In preparation to the move to the new Istanbul Airport, the Skyteam lounge changed to Comfort Lounge II.
The welcome was really nice, I was looking forward to seeing if there were changes with the switch from ST to Comfort Lounge.
There is a working area :
No changes in the seating area:
Here are the soft and hot drinks stations :
Pasta that didn't look really inspiring:
And some sweets:
I wouldn't say it was good but it wasn't bad either. Would compare that to a canteen at best.
We only had 55 minutes layover in AMS to connect from non- Schengen to Schengen, that means we would have to clear security and immigration. That is pretty tight and will even be more tight as the inbound flight arrived 25 minutes late. Given how congested IST was, I was expecting at least the same delay, if not worse, on departure.
A beautiful ATA MD83
That one is my bird, sorry, couldn't do any better picture :(
Another A321 and the ISX graveyard:
Boarding start at 04:45PM, 15" before scheduled time with a strict respect of the priority:
The purser gave us a very warm welcome.
We immediately noticed that all the J Racks were full although the cabin not full was. The purser offers to stow my mother's trolley behind business class and mine under our middle seat.
I informed him about our short connection and his answer really amazed me: "Yes I know you are going to Basel and that your connection is tight. Don't worry as soon as we land, I'll pick up your mother's bag and bring it up front".
So here is my trolley under the seat:
The pitch is really good:
A321 next door:
A welcome drink was offered upon boarding:
The boarding was expedited in no time and we would only push back with a 5' delay.
Another Iranian MD83:
777-300ER TK :
TK is at home here:
A320 departing while a 773 arrives:
Another miracle, no wait to take off, we are number two only:
Farewell to ISX, it was my last time through Atatürk and I will not really miss it :)
The two 340 did not move:
TK and Iran Air Tours:
Off we go and TK retro delivery :
After take off views:
We flew close to Black Sea:
Pillows are handed out:
The service starts with an aperitif, something AF doesn't do on longer flights like the one to AMM.
Bacardi coke for me:
Menus are handed out:
The Ciel Bleu inspired the menu:
The menu can be used for the day:
Hot towels are offered:
My mother took the salmon, she said it was excellent!
I took the chicken together with a fresh apple juice, always excellent on KL!
This is the whole tray:
Without the dessert lid:
With the cutlery:
The meal was really good, my only concern was the cold cut as started: it was a bit to much and too greasy. But all in all a good meal.
Dinner with a view:
The recline is pretty good:
We entered the Dutch airspace:
The sun starts to set:
A lovely overwater sunset:
We eventually landed on time and taxied next to this 74F:
Even if all should now run according to the plan, this is … Amsterdam and in Amsterdam things not often go as per the plan.
The captain informs us that we are going to park at terminal C, which is a Schengen Terminal, that meant : a bus will bring us to Terminal E were the checks are going to be. That is a big waste of time.
The purser holds is promise and picks us my mother bag before everyone stands up and wishes us good luck with the transfer. We rush out of the plane to the bus and then we have to wait until it fills up as KLM doesn't offer a dedicated bus for J.
We then are transfered to the Terminal E where we face a passport control upon leaving the bus. Then we head to the security that was empty.
We run to the police controls that were also empty and at that time it is 20H10 and the flight is noted as last call. We are at Terminal D after the checks and we now run as crazy to Terminal B. My mother is in her early 60 so still fit but no more at her best. Will we make it? The answer in the next chapter :)
The cabin is older than AF's A320 but much more comfortable even if not a real business class cabin.
The crew was really nice and the food appropriate.
ISX was a mess and I am glad it is now gone.
AMS can be a pain on short connections and this day wasn't an exception.
Thanks for reading!!