Review of SWISS flight Zurich Dubai in Economy

Airline SWISS
Flight LX242
Class Economy
Seat 50K
Aircraft Boeing 777-300ER
Flight time 05:41
Take-off 27 Feb 22, 13:58
Arrival at 27 Feb 22, 22:39
LX   #15 out of 75 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 861 reviews
Carlotherocks
By BRONZE 1138
Published on 7th March 2022

INTRODUCTION


Hello FlightReporters,
As I may have written in past reports last July I've been graduated in Architecture. When my parents told me that they wanted to make me a big present I start thinking about what to ask for, but no ideas came to my mind. Finally, in Autumn, I realized what I wanted: travelling.

My last extra-Europe travel happened in August 2019, when I visited Vietnam and Cambodia. After the long Covid period I needed a taste of normality: getting on a plane, having my passport stamped, changing moneys, hearing other languages and tasting unusual dishes.

Around October I took a look to prices for planes and hotels and I finally found a destination: Dubai.
I chose to travel there the first week of March, in order to be free from exams and at the same time experience the Universal Exposition Expo 2020. For a young (future) architect like me an event like Expo is like a Disneyland for a child. Moreover in 2015 I worked as a volunteer at Expo Milano 2015 and I really appreciated the international appeal of this event.

I ask a dear friend of mine to come with me and she immediately agrees. We set these date: 27th Febraury to 5th March.


BOOKING OPTIONS


Swiss International Air Lines - 505 €
27th Feb
MXP-ZRH 9:50 - 11:05
ZRH-DXB 12:55 - 21:55

5th Mar
DXB-ZRH 2:05 - 6:10
ZRH-MXP 7:25 - 8:20

Turkish Airlines - 523 €
27th Feb
MXP-IST 11:15 - 16:15
IST-DXB 21:30 - 2:50 (+1d)

5th Mar
DXB-IST 2:40 - 6:35
IST-MXP 8:55 - 9:45


Even if I was really curious to try Turkish Airlines and visit the marvellous Istanbul Airport this solution presented a drawback: arriving at Dubai at 3 am in the morning would have been loosing the first half of the day 28th Febraury, seriously affecting our program.
Moreover the 5-hour stopover in IST would have been a bit boring

For all these reasons we decided to try Swiss International Air Lines via Zurich. For me it would be the first time with this airline and transfering in ZRH.

The 1st November my friend and I booked the tickets. For unknown reasons the price was 5 euros lower on Lufthansa website, so we bought it from there. My friend decided to buy a cheaper fare (420€) since she didnt' need the hold luggage.


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In order to be closer to the Expo 2020 site we book the Avani Ibn Battuta Hotel in Jebel Ali, for 560€ (4 nights)
The hotel is very cozy, the service very good and it's just 30 minutes by metro to the Exposition.


ROUTING



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Some stats:
I've already been in DXB in 2009, when I made a family trip to Mauritius. The routing was FCO-DXB-MRU-DXB-MXP-FCO and was made with Emirates Boeing 777s except for MXP-FCO (done with AirOne 737)


TRANSFER IN ZRH


After arriving from Milan-Malpensa we were left inside the terminal around 11.30
The boarding was scheduled for 11.55, one hour before departure time
As the boarding pass printed in MXP showed, the gate would be in Dock E
Having to clear passport control we immediately headed to gate E46


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The Airside Center, located between Dock A and Dock B piers
It contains many shops…


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…and a massive glass wall facing the apron
It contributes to flood the space with natural light, making the lounge less "cold" than many airports


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Swiss tails parked at Dock A


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The passport control hall is located in the basement


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The hall was quite busy, but fortunately it's equipped with a good amount of e-Gates for EU passports


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Unfortunately my friend has some issues with the e-Gate and she was forced to go to a manned booth
We cleared passport control in about 6 minutes


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Time to take the SkyMetro people mover to Dock E


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The 1.1 km ride took around 3 minutes to bring us to Dock E
During the journey mountain-inspired cartoons were projected along the tunnel walls, accompanied by typical mountain sounds


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I really appreciate the architecture of this terminal, dominated by naked concrete and wood
Moreover all the terminal areas (also the underground ones) are filled by natural light


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Dock E contains 29 gates (labelled E18-67) and hosts extra-Schenghen operations


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We arrived at our gate (E46) in 20 minutes, perfectly on time
The gate was ready to board, but still closed

I'd like to take a few lines to talk about ZRH Airport Wi-Fi. There are 3 ways to get online: receiving a phone call, receiving an SMS or inserting a code given by many BPs scanners spread along the terminal. Since Switzerland isn't part of European Union roaming I wasn't able to receive the phone call or the SMS and so I was forced to find a scanner and get my code. It's a bit boring since many airport are access-free or require an email address to log in. Maybe the latter would be easily for passengers.


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Spotting time


Swiss Air Lines A330


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Edelweiss A340


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United Airlines Boeing 767 pushing back and taxiing


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Etihad Airways Boeing 787


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Air Canada Boeing 787


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Edelweiss A330


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Emirates A380


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And finally our ride for Dubai
Swiss International Air Lines Boeing 777-300ER, HB-JNB, delivered in March '16
It's equipped with 340 seats: 8 in F, 62 in C and 270 in Y


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Boarding (Mess)


Despite boarding was scheduled to begin at 11.55, nothing happened
Around 12.15 three temporary desks were set in front of gate E46 to check health documents

United Arab Emirates requires a PCR test no more than 72 hours before departure and a vaccination certificate. We had uploaded our documents on LX website a couple of days before, but the gate agent told everyone that the control needed to be done in any case


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It took us 30 minutes to get to the booth for the documents control
The lady check my PCR test result, focusing especially on the time the test was done
She put a stamp on my BP


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Time to leave this cold weather for a week


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Descending to the jetway at 12.50, five minutes before scheduled departure time and with many passengers still checking their medical documents


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I cannot stop to admire this beauty
I think the Triple-7 is one of my favourite plane, I've flown with it in 2009, but I was too young to appreciate


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Just one jetway was connected


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Twin 777 parked next to ours


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The wing and the engine looks enormous even from the jetway


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Door shot as usual


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the flight


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This welcome sign is really a touch of class


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I gave the flight report form to the purser. He was really kind accepting it and told me it would have been a pleasure to bring it to the flight deck

The main Business Class cabin, equipped with 52 lie-flat seats in stagerred 2-2-1 configuration
Between doors 1 and 2 there's another small C cabin with just 10 seats, plus the First Class cabin (8 seats in 1-2-1 config.)


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First Economy Class cabin


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And the second one, were our seats 50K and 50H are located


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Our home for the next 6 hours

Choosing the penultimate row immediately revealed to be a good advantage. There are just two seats on the window side, meaning that my friend and I didn't have to "jump" over a stranger to stand up
Moreover taking this row gives the possibility to use the back of seat 49H as additional table or baggage storage


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The only drawback is the mis-allignement with the seats in front, but it's not a big issue

The legroom was very good, I had an acceptable space for legs (I'm 182 cm tall)


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The view from my seat

Qatar Airways Boeing 777 parked next to us


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Meanwhile boarding slowly continued


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Another Swiss 777 pushing back with an airBaltic A220 taxiing in the background


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35 minutes after scheduled boarding was completed
The plane seems very close to 100% of load factor


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Pushback started a little before 13.45

Qatar Airways Boeing 777, Air Canada Boeing 787 and Turkish Airlines Boeing 737 parked at Dock E


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Meanwhile the safety video was played


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Thank you, Danke, Merci, Grazie, Engraziel


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SunExpress Boeing 737, Edelweiss and Bulgaria Air A320s and Emirates A380

Three narrows and a whale-jet, seems like a movie title XD


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Emirates A380
Their flight to Dubai departs at 14.35


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Swiss Boeing 777


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Crossing RWY16/34


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This area between the two runways seems to be dedicated to plane-spotters
I know from many blogs that ZRH is a "spotter-friendly" airport

In my opinion airports should care more about this activity. For example in FCO, where I've been many times, there are no places for plane spotting, and this obliges people to stop along the road. And it can be dangerous for spotters and car drivers…


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Waiting for our turn to take off


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We'd depart from RWY10, the shortest of the three runways at ZRH


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One hour later than scheduled we start our take off to DXB


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V1…rotate


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Kloten town, which the airport is named after


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Switzerland countryside scrolling below us while we climb…


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…gradually leaving space to snowy mountains


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in-flight entertainment


Every economy class is equipped with a 13-inch screen for In-Flight Entertainment
The main interface shows seat number, flight time and distance and language settings


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The main menu is quite easy to navigate


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The main pages are: Movies, TV Shows, Music, Audiobooks, Podcasts and Airshow
There are also games, contents for kids and infos

The choice of movies is really wide and there're many langues available. Movies are divided into categories and can be searched also by a language filter. The movie selection spans from cults to newest productions



The airshow has many different views, this one is called "Control Room" and shows flight parameters.
The IFE would be perfect if equipped with flight cameras


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lunch time


One hour into the flight meal service started


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The lunch was anticipated by a snack: a bag of crackers with a choice of beverages. I chose orange juice

Crackers were a bit overbaked in my opinion, while the juice had a good taste


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Everything tastes good with this view


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Meanwhile the menu for the lunch was displayed


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Quinoa with vinaigrette and fresh vegetables
Followed by a choice between
Zurich-style chicken with hashbrowns potatoes
or
Pasta with lemon sauce
To finish
Sponge cake with lemon cream


I decided to try chicken
The lunch is accompanied by bread and a packed cheese bar


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Quinoa with vegetables was quite fresh, but the vinaigrette resulted too acid
Chicken was well cooked and the sauce was very tasty, but not covering meat. Potatoes were very good (maybe the best part) while carrots were uneatable
The dessert was too sweet and the lemon cream was almost taste-less

I really appreciate the use of metal cutlery, I think it had become quite uncommon on economy class


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During all service the crew was very kind providing extra food or drinks

While having lunch I chose to see "Tron", a 1982 science-fiction with Jeff Bridges
Audio quality of the provided earplugs was very good


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Lunch service ended while we flew over Black Sea


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Outside a thick layer of clouds made it impossible to spot any landmark


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After lunch I decided to take a nap, taking advantage of the comfortable seat


enjoying the triple-7


My nap lasted about 2 hours
I woke up while approaching Iraqi airspace
The seat is really good to sleep, helped also by the decent legroom


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Mood lighting was set on blue, enhancing the sleepy mood of the cabin


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The purser came to my seat bringing the filled flight report form and two boxes
They contained a Swiss Air-branded coffee and tea mugs, for my friend and me
She asked me if she can take the tea mug while I take the coffee one

The purser also told me that the Captain waited for me to visit the cockpit after landing in DXB


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This design is really nice and I think it will be a very nice memory of this journey
I really appreciated it
Thanks Swiss!


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The flight report was complete

I'm always very happy when cabin crews are so available filling reports and making me small gifts
Such an appreciated touch


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Having nothing to do I decided to explore the beauties of the Triple-7

Our Economy Class cabin, the second, located between doors 4 and 5

Only few passengers were sleeping, most of them were enjoying the I.F.E.


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In theory the middle Economy Class galley should be set with self-service food and beverages but there was just a bottle of water


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First Economy Class cabin, located between doors 3 and 4


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2nd meal approaching dubai


One hour before landing mood lighting switch to purple for the second meal service


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The snack was made of a vanilla ice cream (quite good in quality) and a choice of drinks


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According to the airshow we flew above Iraq, passing by cities like Mosul, Baghdad and Basra


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Approaching Persian Gulf


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Kuwait City, Kuwait


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Al Qatif, Saudi Arabia


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Manama, Bahrain


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landing in dxb


30 minutes before landing cabin was prepared
Mood lighting switched to orange


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Finally we approach Dubai coast

Port Rashid with the Creek and the Old City


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DXB seen from above
The 4 concourses are clearly visible
It's so impressive to know that the 3 biggest are used only by Emirates (and Qantas twice a day)


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Ras Al Khor reservoir with Dubai Downtown in the background


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Dubai International City


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We'd land from south-east
It's really interesting to see how the city is an alternation of heavy built zones and almost desert ones


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Flewing over a giant interchange between E311 and D89 roads
The landing would happen on RWY30L


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Ready to land in Emirates' reign


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44 minutes after scheduled, at 22.39 (local time), we smootly touch down at Dubai International Airport


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Vacating the runway


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Taxi was quite short
We're welcomed by Emirates Cargo Boeing 777F


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Blocking at gate D18, located in concourse D

Concourse D is the only boarding area linked to Terminal 1, while concourses A-B-C are dedicated to Emirates' operations at Terminal 3

Saudia Boeing 777 was sitting next to us


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Welcome to Dubai!


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arrival procedures


Since my friend and I were "invited" to visit the flight deck we waited the plane to get almost empty to leave our seats


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The main Business Class cabin


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The First Class look amazing, I'm impressed by the level of intimacy that every seat can reach
I really like also the use of wood and the general color pattern. Very warm and welcoming
Looking forward to try it one day


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The Captain and the First Officer kindly welcomed us inside the flight deck
It was the first time for me inside a 777 cabin and it looked wonderful
Both the pilots were very chatty and we spend a few minutes talking about the plane
They told me it was their first time in DXB since Swiss started to use the Triple-7 on this route since a short time
Before ZRH-DXB was flown with A330s


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We were the last to leave the plane
Bye bye HB-JNB, thank you


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Kam Air A340
Never heard of this Afghan airline before


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Going upstairs for arrivals


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Concourse D is linked to the main terminal with an elevated people mover
It takes around 2 minutes


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Air Canada Boeing 777, Gulf Air Boeing 787 and Kam Air A340, plus our Swiss bird


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Passport control hall was a bit crowded, but the lane was quite fast


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It took less than 20 minutes to clear immigration
The PCR Test wasn't checked, just passport control and digital facial recognition
For the first time in my memories a brief hand luggage control was carried before accessing baggage hall

Luggages were already touring on the belt


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Meeters and greeters hall


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We immediately search for a taxi to reach our hotel in Jebel Ali
It was midnight when we left the airport

Emirates Concourse C seen from the motorway


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The 37-km ride took around half and hour and costs us 200AED (approximately 50 euros)
We arrived at the hotel at 00.30, ready to explore Dubai and the Expo in the following days

See you at the return flight


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Verdict

SWISS

8.4/10
Cabin8.5
Cabin crew9.0
Entertainment/wifi8.0
Meal/catering8.0

Zurich - ZRH

7.9/10
Efficiency8.5
Access8.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness7.0

Dubai - DXB

7.3/10
Efficiency8.0
Access7.0
Services7.0
Cleanliness7.0

Conclusion

Swiss Air Lines long haul product is definitely a very good one
The cabin and the seats are very comfortable, the crew was professional and kind, the meal was acceptable for a 6-hour flight and the I.F.E. full of interesting contents

The only drawback of this journey is the health documents check at ZRH
I imagine that many passengers upload their documents days before and got them checked, so I don't know why they made another control for everyone. Also because this control cause a slight delay in the departure

Information on the route Zurich (ZRH) Dubai (DXB)

The contributors of Flight-Report published 19 reviews of 2 airlines on the route Zurich (ZRH) → Dubai (DXB).


Useful

The airline with the best average rating is Emirates with 8.4/10.

The average flight time is 6 hours and 16 minutes.

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4 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 597983 by
    Manbou BRONZE 64 Comments

    Hi Carlo,
    first of all thank you very much for this well-written and especially well-illustrated report. It's really interesting to see different long-haul travel opportunities opening up again and how different airlines handle these new circumstances. Also great that many people seem very much ready to travel again to the destinations that are opening up. The soft product seems to be particularly nice on this flight (and of course the special gifts and cockpit invitation!), and the seats the two of you have chosen do seem to be some kind of hidden jewel in Economy Class.
    Other than that, I can assure you that you're not the only ones dumbfounded by the lack of functionality of the online doc checks. I had the exact same experience a few weeks ago with Delta; even though I had received confirmation mails that my docs were okay, I still had to go through all the checks at the airport and decided not to upload anything for the flight back, which saved me considerable time in the end.
    Finally, I'm now anxious to see when your new motion picture "The Narrows and the Whale Jet" will come to my local movie theater ^^
    Thanks again for this report!

    • Comment 597987 by
      Carlotherocks BRONZE AUTHOR 66 Comments

      Hello :)
      Thank you very much for your kind appreciation and detailed comment
      In 2021 I flew a couple of times to Athens and between Rome and Milan and at that time most of flights were bound to European destinations
      Seeing again long haul flights gives me a big hope for 2022
      And gives also good spotting opportunities

      The experience with Swiss was really pleasant, maybe the best long haul I had (tied with CX A350 in 2019)
      I'd definitely try to choose those seats in future

      I can imagine you had the same problem with Delta
      The price of travelling again is having this issues with papers
      Honestly I prefer issues if they give me the possibility to do what I love most
      Hope it wont be necessary soon

      I'll post the teaser trailer in the next report XD

      Thank you so much again and wish you a 2022 full of flights
      Carlo :)

  • Comment 598413 by
    ThomasDutch SILVER 579 Comments

    Seems like a great flight. I always enjoy flying Swiss as their entire cabin crew is always very engaged and very friendly. Lufthansa could learn a lot of them. Thanks for sharing :)

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