The airline with the best average rating is SWISS with 7.8/10.
The average flight time is 2 hours and 3 minutes.More information
How do I define happiness? - Well, it's a difficult question but flying SWISS 4 times in one month is definitely a sort of happiness to me :)
Welcome to this slightly delayed report from the end of June 2021 of my flight to Zurich on board SWISS A220-100. Whilst I had been connecting at ZRH multiple times already, this was the first time I was travelling strictly to Zurich, touristically. I also took my mum with me for that trip. As a spoiler, I must admit, I fell in love with Zurich and I will definitely come back soon (visit tourism bonus section for some pictures from the town).
Let's take off!
Flight number LH1343
Route Warsaw Chopin - Zurich Kloten
Flight date 24th June 2021, 0935-1135 (actual 1040-1212)
Scheduled flight time 2:00 (actual 1:32)
Aircraft model Airbus A220-100 (ex. Bombardier CS100)
Aircraft registration HB-JBC
Seating configuration CY125 (3 rows of SWISS Business)
Aircraft age (at the time of flight) 4.8 years
Seat number 23AB
Departure gate 39 (jet bridge)
Arrival gate A75 (jet bridge)
Load factor (approx.) 100%
My journey starts, as usually at Warsaw Chopin airport. The weather outside car windows wasn't promising - dark clouds, strong wind and a risk of thunderstorm. I was expecting delays… I don't need to add that it was raining too. Thankfully, weather in Zurich was expected to be a bit better.
There are no temperature checks carried out at WAW anymore, however - when flying Lufthansa Group, you need to pick up your boarding pass from the check in desk to allow for COVID documentation check.
You can still choose seats during "OLCI" even in the lowest fare which I had. Even though I had a SEQ of 001, the seat choice was very limited, and so me and my mum ended up at the very back of the airplane. But the flight was 100% full, so I am happy we managed to get seats together at all! (we were on two separate bookings)
Because the flight was super full, the weight and size of hand luggage were stringently checked. My cabin bag was slightly overweight (10kg instead of 8kg) and I was required to check it in, though I was not charged for that. It was a busy day at WAW overall with lots of holiday flights departing with people thirsty for travelling after months of lockdown. As a result, there was a bit of wait at the security.
You can tell, WAW is waking up! Lots of international departures that Thursday!
All shops, including the big Baltona Duty Free were open. The shop is really nice and fresh inside and has a large selection of fragrances, alcohols etc.
But the water price was insane! 9.50 PLN is around 2 EUR, whereas normal price for a bottle of water in a shop in Poland is 1.50 PLN. Such a rip-off.
Meanwhile the "SWISS Wunderkind" has arrived and was taxiing to our gate 39. And so I started to go towards the gate as well.
…passing by that lovely shop with Polish food which I am always impressed by.
Our gate was slowly being prepared for boarding. But meanwhile, a thunderstorm started and it was pouring down - I haven't seen a heavier rain for a long time. It became so dark, as if it was the night. Also at some point, lights in the terminal went off, quite scary.
But boarding was still conducted as planned, on time.
At the entrance, I was greeted by amazingly friendly flight attendants - T. Olsson (Maitre de Cabine) and Florian. They even noticed the SWISS tag on my backpack, asking if I work for SWISS! I had to deny but I admitted it's my favourite airline anyway!
It was not my first flight on the A220, however, I was passing through the cabin to reach my seat with my jaw dropped. How is it possible that a regional plane brilliant like that was ever designed! So spacious, bright, modern and looking luxurious inside. A top notch! Definitely my favourite airliner. This particular one was super clean and in a very good condition as well!
Here's a closer look at our seats 23AB. The 2-3 seating configuration is very convenient, as it allows to accommodate both couples and larger families.
The seats manufactured by ZIM are sleek and elegant, very wide, and even though slimline, they are very comfortable for short haul flights. They feature a coat hook and a headrest, which although not adjustable, is a nice additive anyway. And I don't think I need to stress how much I enjoy the little details like the contrasting stitching and embossed beige leather antimacassars…
As you can see, legroom is decent too, even for my long legs (I'm 1.87m tall), and even at the back of the aircraft (first few rows have even better seat pitch!).
The seat backs feature 2 small pockets, a large tray table and a separate literature compartment. And these chromed details… I'm in love <3
And these cute little screens which show the moving map, safety video and some other information. I love them too! So what is the A220 from SWISS missing? Probably only WiFi and electric sockets. I can't find ANY other drawbacks of this aircraft.
Boarding continued for the next couple of minutes, and yes, our flight was totally packed - 1 empty seat I think, only. But there is something about the design of that aircraft, that you don't feel the cabin is being busy.
Whilst boarding has been completed, we were still at the gate with a huge thunderstorm outside the windows. The captain made his announcement about a delayed departure due to weather (the ground staff were not able to load luggage). He also made more announcements later on, overall we were kept well-informed (including connecting passengers) who were taken care of by the lovely crew.
As we were still waiting for a green light, Florian from cabin crew made a round through the cabin distributing drawing sets and toys for children which I think is a super nice touch from SWISS! He also stopped at my seat and asked if I want a SWISS-branded toy, as I love this airline so much, I couldn't reject such an offer :)
After that, as our stay on the ground was dragging on, our Maitre de Cabine decided to distribute water to all guests on board, they really did care about us, passengers! (Water will be distributed also later inflight if someone wanted another bottle).
Finally, the rain and storm stopped and we were soon able to depart with just over an hour delay. I expected a bumpy departure from WAW, but I was positively surprised this time. I can't stress how much I love the sound of the PW engines on the A220 spooling up - it's unmistakeable!
Departing rainy Warsaw, and the view from a huge A220 window.
And soon we were over the rainy clouds. This is why I love flying (one of the many reasons of course!) - no matter what the weather is on the ground, it's always sunny there, up in the sky.
After departure, it was time for my famous toilet tour :P And while you might find this photo awkward, I think it's worth mentioning how huge the rear toilet in the A220 is - honestly bigger than what you get in most 787s or 350s, it also had very high ceiling, unlike Embraer and CRJs. Plus it was nicely designed, modern and was also clean.
Time to go back to my seat, and choose something from SWISS Saveurs Buy on Board menu… I really wanted to try the Rinderfleisch Bagel and my mum was going to take the vegetable burger but, unfortunately, before the crew reached row 23, all fresh food products were already gone :(( (passenger in front of me took the last chicken sandwich). So I ended up taking an orange juice and a hazelnut chocolate, which were both of very good quality (though the chocolate wasn't really my type).
Soon after, T. Olsson, Maitre de cabine, passed through the cabin with a huge smile and was giving out the famous SWISS chocolate, a concept that now the whole Lufthansa Group has adopted. I asked if I could possibly get some more to give to my friends and the answer I received was: "Of course you can! You're our guest at SWISS.". Isn't this how customer service should look like? - Lufthansa, you can learn a lot from SWISS crew!
If that wasn't already enough, in a few minutes, Florian, who previously greeted me at the entrance and also gave me the SWISS toy, emerged from behind the Business class curtain with a tray with two glasses, a two packages of snack and a bottle of Duval-Leroy Champagne. He said, that because I am a fan of SWISS and a frequent flyer, they have a little surprise for me and my mum. That was such a cute gesture from him. I loved it, and I know my mum did too!
This flight was quite honestly like a dream, from A to Z, with the only flaw being that there were no more fresh food options to purchase. After the celebration in the sky, I went to the front galley to return our glasses and the champagne bottle and also had a little chat with Maitre de Cabine. We discussed about the A220, and while she said that some details e.g. in the galley, look cheap, we agreed that it gives passengers a super comfortable and luxurious experience. She also called Florian later on and we chatted about travel, my university and life in general. It was great and they were really warm people but soon we started our final descent and I had to return to 23A.
A very uneventful and quite a smooth approach into Zurich followed also by a smooth touchdown 37 mins after schedule. However, all connecting passengers were assured that their connections are guaranteed and crew also made sure before landing that they know which gate their next flights depart from - professionalism all the way!
We docked into a jet bridge, which is quite unusual for WAW arrivals, next to an old-ish SWISS A320. We let all connecting passengers to disembark first as they were more in a rush than we were. In fact I was the last person to leave the aircraft :P, I couldn't resist taking some pictures of an empty cabin.
And I also took a selfie with my absolutely fabulous, amazing, extraordinary crew! Both with and without masks, I'm not posting the photo here for privacy reasons. I thanked them for a wonderful experience and wrote some compliments to the management. It was, unfortunately, time to leave the aircraft :( The arrival procedure at ZRH was super easy and efficient, no more document checks were conducted.
Edelweiss at A71, preparing for its departure, I would really like to try out this airline in the near future!
Empty corridor at ZRH bottom level, I am pretty sure the upper level was packed with people. And nice SWISS banner advertisements all around.
And Welcome to Zurich, Switzerland, my country number 24 (still a lot more to see).
The luggage delivery was slightly delayed, and what I mean by "slightly", is 5 minutes… We were already apologised for that in an announcement from the speakers, Swiss professionalism, at the airport as well! We were soon off to Zurich, a city that I totally fell in love with, if you want to know why, see the tourism bonus section below.
That's sadly the end of my report, apologies for making it long but I got overexcited with my amazing experience with SWISS. Pretty much 10 out of 10 this time for me.
A quick few photos from Zurich. I will definitely come back, maybe even for longer than a few days… Any questions, please ask. I'll be happy to help.
The river Limmat, during the day and at night.
A view over the Zürichsee from Uetliberg
The Lindt chocolate museum.
Zurich has just probably become my favourite, or one of my favourite, cities in Europe.
What can I say in conclusion, 101% SWISS perfection, nothing to add.