Upon exiting my Manchester flight I saw this sign.
The new Airport is definately a treat for the eyes. The architecture,the aesthetics…allow The Jet to show you around !
I love this Crescent illusion depending which angle you view it !
A321 TC-JSL which in 2016 was my second flight as a flight reporter. Seen here pushing back for Malta having arrived earlier from Cologne.
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Stairway to Heaven….only joking ! It is the escalator upto the luxurious Turkish Airlines Lounge.
Superfast WIFI but you only get 1 hour free ! So use wisely.
Thankfully since my last Turkish Airlines flight from Istanbul to Lahore,the aircraft has permanently been changed to an A330 (
see my flight report which was the internet's first for this route back in 2017 ).
TK 714 is a daily codeshare flight with PIA to Lahore.
The gate shows up on Information Screens 2 hours before scheduled departure.
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On the next gate, this Turkish Airlines A330 registered TC-JNT and named Bursa used to be named Troy/Truva. Seen here after arrival from Phuket.
Funnily enough,the A330 I am flying tonight is named Troy/Truva.
It is registered TC-JOG and my A330 tonight will also carry a special Troy livery !
My ride to Lahore !
TC-JOG had arrived from earlier from Amsterdam Schiphol.
Meaning Lahore bound passengers from Holland would be flying the same aircraft all the way !
I arrived at the gate area (D15) as the seating area gradually filled up. A male ground staff member arrived at the gate and I had wanted to know if the seat next to me is still free. He advised he is still setting up and to return after around 20 minutes. In this time I noted the Airbridge had been attached at 2015pm.
3 more (all male) ground staff arrived. I asked about my seat query and they advised the next seat is free ! Bliss ! Music to my ears !
I asked if I can wait at the barrier and a gentleman said yes ! There were only 2 Business Class passengers tonight meaning I will be Passajero Numero Uno in Clase Economica as Economy boarding begins from the rear !
No passengers came to the gate itself until around 2030pm approx.
Boarding began at 2100pm and my NICOP card was checked and I removed my facemask for this to show it is really me.
NICOP is the National Identity Card Of Pakistan and the holder must have one or both Parents from Pakistan. The card allows 10 years of Visa Free entry to Pakistan !
I walked through the airbridge and said Good Evening in Turkish ( Iyi Aksamlar) to a Steward. He just about replied back and directed me to my seat.
As I boarded,the new boarding music played. I find it very bland and uninspiring. It totally does not complement the Turkish Airlines experience. The 2017 boarding / arrival music had way more meaning.
The cabin was bright and fresh, the cleaning standard was way above the Manchester flight albeit some headrests had not been flattened.
An Airhostess who was just putting her bag away smiled and asked how I am.
I then went to the rear to take my seat and catering was still being loaded. I said Good Evening to the caterer and the Steward Mr Noorullah who would look after me through the flight.
Mr Noorullah seemed pleasantly surprised I said this in Turkish ! He congratulated me for my wedding part 2 and I asked him tonight's meal options. He advised he will check and let me know. ( He later told me it is Pasta or Chicken and I will be guaranteed my first choice )
I mentioned to another crewmember that I am off to Pakistan to complete my marriage formalities. And that I would be delighted if I may try some Raspberry juice. By this time the A and B rows had started filling with passengers. I noted a guy with a longhaul amenity kit with traditional Turkish pattern. No doubt he had flown from the USA ?!
Next thing,the lovely Cabin Chief comes to my seat and she greets me by name. She is happy for my reason for flying to Pakistan and says that her colleague will bring me some Raspberry Juice and a sweet treat ! And the Juice and a Profiterole arrive much to the awe of some other passengers !
I asked if I might be able to get a Business Class amenity kit but was told there are only 2 for the 2 passengers flying tonight. But I was told I will get my pick of Economy Class amenity kits !
Rows A and B were looking at me getting VIP service ! I am just an everyday but charming guy and God blesses me with nice people everywhere I go and I am deeply grateful. I heard some British accents of boarding passengers.
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At 2125pm there was a Boarding Complete announcement.
Kids packs were handed out to kids. I asked if I may have one for a nephew and was given one with a smile.
At 2130pm there was a dual language Welcome announcement followed by a Skylife announcement and to download it via Pressreader.
The safety video played at 2135pm and then the cabin was secured and lights dimmed.
Across the aisle was a Mum with two young boys and I gave her the packaged blanket from the spare seat next to me and she was most grateful. She spoke so lovingly to her kids.
Various adverts played through the cabin and a video about the Corona virus played.
Pushback was at 2146pm, exactly the same time as my previous Istanbul-Lahore flight.
At 2205pm and powered like a rocket,we blasted out of Istanbul. The engine roar lasted a good hour or so after take off.
Moments after take off, there was pitch blackness outside as the aircraft takes off over the appropriately named Black Sea !
The Cabin Crew were up and about in no time after take off,preparing meals for the only service on this flight.
One Airhostess was discussing availability of an Apple Watch in Pakistan or something like that with a passenger.
Pakistan Customs / Arrival forms were handed out. It is a must to have this form filled out otherwise you cannot leave the airbridge upon arrival into Pakistan !
I translated the form process for the lady from the USA as she had newly moved to America and spoke little English and the crew definately did not understand her Punjabi ! Talking of which,it would be a nice touch to have prerecorded Urdu announcements and at least 1 Urdu speaking crewmember onboard.
A lady walked by with such a cute baby. Who knows…maybe one day I will travel with a baby Jet and his/her Mum !
I unwrapped my blanket and it smelt like sweet sweet sherbet !
Washrooms had scentsational Atelier Rebul toiletries.
A bubbly and cheerful Airhostess came round with a trolley just after take off to hand out amenity kits. When she got to my seat,without me even asking, she pulled out all these and gave them to me and said if there are other designs she will let me know !
All now have new homes in Scotland and Pakistan :)
Had the seat next to me not been free to move some items over,I would have struggled to comfortably eat as the traytable was embedded in my stomach. The Airbus Design team clearly did not take bigger build passengers into account when designing seat recline and Washroom size. Boeing wins everytime on comfort for this reason (unless on a 738) .
At the time of writing, Spacious and comfortable Turkish 787s are frequently flying between Istanbul and Pakistan. I sincerely hope they take over from the A330,which whilst a step up from the 737-800,is still not offering 100% comfort to myself.
Somewhere over Georgia the engines began roaring. Not a nice feeling on a night flight. The Fasten Seat Belts sign came on and an announcement played advising the same. The aircraft shook and the cabin felt most uncomfortable and the turbulence lasted a good 30 minutes. The passenger in front of me reclined and I got Airshow in my face.
Somewhere over Georgia the engines began roaring. Not a nice feeling on a night flight. The Fasten Seat Belts sign came on and an announcement played advising the same. The aircraft shook and the cabin felt most uncomfortable and the turbulence lasted a good 30 minutes.
As I covered the IFE heavily i my previous report, I shall notdo that here. The selection was exactly the same as from Manchester anyway. Earphones were blue this time however.
WIFI did not work again :(
When meal service began, as promised I got my first choice but was told that due to the restricted catering load,I may only have one choice. I chose the Pasta option. Mr Noorullah later on brought me an extra pasta. Served with a smile !
The tray had a fresh garden salad with olive dressing, warm bread roll and butter,water cuplet, a cutlery pack with steel cutlery,tissue and 1933 wipe. For Dessert there was a creamy Dried Apricot Mousse sprinkled with a dried apricot topping. The Mousse had a luxurious Vanilla taste. Divine !
My meal choice from Istanbul to Lahore was a Rigatoni Pasta in chunky tomatoe sauce and topped with grated Cheese. Without a menucard I cannot say which cheese it was.
The other choice was Paprika Chicken with Rice and needless to say it was the most popular option ! The second Pasta was watery and not cooked well.
A variety of drinks were served during and straight after the meal (take note Aer Lingus longhaul) and I asked if there is a prelanding service. I was told there isn't but that I will get a drink. I didn't get a prelanding drink after all but it is amazing that the prelanding drink service has gone. That said, free drinks are available all flight long. I got an Orange Juice after the meal.
Lights were dimmed after the landing card was handed out and an Airhostess walking by switched off my neighbouring tv which I thought was nice.
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The two kids from the USA with their Mum ? All I heard was ( in Urdu) "Uncle when are we landing ?". I replied in English but the kid still replied in Urdu !
By this time it was 18 minutes to landing.
At 0445am Pakistani time there was an announcement from the cockpit for "15 minutes to landing" and for crew to take their seats.
It sure was nice to have a camera view of landing as on my previous Turkish A330 flight in 2017 (BKKIST) this feature did not work.
We landed at 0500am Pakistani time and the weird landing music played whilst Turkish Airlines adverts played on all tv screens.
The arrival annoumcement was done literally as the aircraft was turning left onto the stand.
I had a photo with crew as a souvenier and wished the crew a nice stay in Lahore.
Covid testing meant that getting to immigration took 55 minutes. The staff as always were very polite. Immigration took a few moments. Whilst waiting I saw my crew walk past and after getting some sort of brief from the Cockpit Crew,they all went to get their transport to their hotel.
I got some change as I now have 4 hours till my bus leaves Lahore for my family home !
Skylife at the Turkish Airlines office at Lahore Airport.
Thank You very much for reading. I hope you enjoyed my flight report. My return to the UK will be in very different circumstances in every way ! Do please like and comment and also share this report with your Pakistani friends,neighbours and colleagues.
Thankfully the A330 now serves this route but Economy Class seat comfort on the A330 is not the best.
The food was delicious and filling and was let down by a second pasta serving that was watery and no prelanding service.
The onboard amenities really enhance the onboard experience but WIFI never seems to work for me on any Turkish Airlines flight.
I remain a loyal passenger and hope to do many more Turkish Airlines trip reports !