Hello dear flight readers! Today I will post a flight I was on yesterday, to took us to visit for the second time Istanbul.
This time around we will rather focus on the remains of Constantinople.
We book this return trip with Turkish Airlines, about 80 euros more expensive than with Air France. We choose this over AF, even though I am a Skyteam gold member, and it was more expensive, the flight was direct and AF had just one flight landing at 3am in Istanbul, which isn't the best way to start a weekend away!
The only thing with miles and more is that - they expire after 12 months.
Miles & More miles earned with this flight: 125
Miles Status earned: 32
We checked in online using the app… that is reall well built.
From the beginning of the Covid Crisis, the airport shrunk to operate only from Terminal 2, up until last week when Terminal 1 re-opened with the airlines previously operating from there.
Check in hall was really busy, we only had 2 cabin luggages so we skipped this part..
Just like on Terminal 2, boarding passes should be scanned prior to access security.
Having flown with Air France during all the difference phases of lock down from Terminal 2, I got used to a population mainly made of professionnal and this was a shock… It took for ever with families, babies, people not ready to open their suitcases, declare their laptops….
Passed this point ze rushed through the duty-free zone and this iconic "place des lumières" - a bit dark on my picture!
We went upstairs at the Passport control, where they were one policeman and a policewoman checking passports; the Lady was exceptionnally grumpy. She called a Lady to check her passports and this one turned her back to her as her husband was also calling her, the Policewoman took this as an incredible offence and a 15 min long argument started… worrying me a bit as the boarding limit time was just 15 min away.
Finally we were able to reach C09 boarding hall.
This boarding lounges are really more spacious and comfortable comapres to Terminal 2.
our bird of the day next to TO
Aircraft: Airbus A321-271 Neo
Engines: 2x PW1134
Age: 1 month old
Layout: C20 Y162
Observation: Brand new A321Neo, amongst 30 others.
My first time onboard an A321Neo.
Turlisk Airlines doesn't seem to have figured out a boarding procedure… Everyone just boarded without order.
And when I go for my seat 7A, i discover that an old lady was on it... I told her I bought my seat and asked if she can move.. The old lady told me her knees were hurting and then she pretented not to speak english anymore.
A cabin crew was nearby and I told her that was my seat and I like taking pictures when I flew… The answer was something like I am sorry but she is old and she will let you take pictures… I tried @Pititom's strategy, to book seats at A and C but it didn't work for me..
My other half told me to drop it otherwise people will look at us like some sort of petty person.
I am sure you FR people share my frustration!!
The plane being brand new, so was the cabin… The pitch is actually average, but the IFE, thickness of the seat, hearplugs given, USB plugs are a nice plus, especially in economy.
You couldn't recline the seats though.
Taxiing to 35L
And take off
Scenes over the Alps…
Cruise mood lights… I am actually really impressed by the A321Neo, it is super quiet..
And again, the food is impressive for a J class..
Bread and butter, Salad, cake,
Wine of course, I might as well start to try the local specialities!
The main meal was a tad small in portions i found.
Mood lighting changed whist we were over Greece.
I wish I could had a better picture of the winglet but you that woman didn't even go to the toilets once!
I wish I could make a magazine review as usual but there wasn't any, not even on the app. However there was Wi-Fi onboard, but it was quite dear so I didn't use it.
Turkish Airlines proudly says they are the best with Covid measures… I am not sure if it is true but they do give a mask and cleaning towel just like AF.
On final to the new IST airport.
After landing, we taxied for some time and reached a gate at the terminal, where we unboarded by a jetway; I took advantage of being in the queue to show the Business seats that really seem interesting. Really a big plus compares to European legacy short haul business class.
Not sure if the new Airport will be renamed after Ataturk just like the old one.. The airport is indeed brand new, very high ceilings.
Unlike what I have read, it was fluid, not so many people even at passport control.
To finish, a nice view from Galata Tower where our hotel is
TK: My first flight with them, overall a good impression for a 2,5 hours flight in economy - better than European legacy carriers.
Hard product is overall better - IFE, plugs, WiFi, but no magazine.
Soft Product - a complimentary propper meal with free booze
Staff didn't handle the problem with my seat according to what you pay for - minus for that.
LYS: Efficient, although you can tell the staff at T1 hasn't worked for a very long time - really lack of patience and habits.
ISL: Brand new indeed, spacious could be cleaner and is really far from the city.