Review of SWISS flight Los Angeles Zurich in Business

Airline SWISS
Flight LX 41
Class Business
Seat 7A
Aircraft Boeing 777-300ER
Flight time 10:55
Take-off 10 Nov 18, 19:20
Arrival at 11 Nov 18, 15:15
LX   #16 out of 72 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 848 reviews
NGO85
By 1303
Published on 17th September 2022

This series was another short trip to Veneto for work. LH and LX were the cheapest *A options, having done the previous trip on LH, I opted for a LX routing through ZRH. Since there is just 1x daily service LAX-ZRH, the routing assembled itself pretty easily. The only new aspects for me in this routing was a first time flying with WK and a first time flying on a CS100 (at least as it was called at the time of travel). The timing of this trip turned out to be non-optimal as we were forced to evacuate our house the day before at 2am due to the Woolsey Fire that ripped through the Santa Monica Mountains. Since we were already homeless for the week, Mrs. NGO85 told me to proceed with the trip since there was little to do about the situation. Luckily my emergency bag had at least enough clothes to make it through this trip.


Routing


After getting dropped off at TBIT by Mrs. NGO85 about 2h before departure, I went over to the LX counters and was efficiently checked in and handed my boarding passes. Security was a breeze with TSA pre-check, and I went to the *A Lounge for a shower and a light snack out on the deck. As always, the lounge is a zoo in the late afternoons so no photos were taken. About 30 minutes before boarding, I left the lounge to make a loop through the concourse stopping by Gate 150 to see our B77W waiting outside for its belly to be filled with some cargo.


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My TSA scribbled boarding pass.


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SWISS, LX 41
Equipment: Boeing 777-300ER [HB-JNH, delivered August 2017]
Departure: 19:20 (ATD: 19:40)
Arrival: 15:15 (ATA: 14:50)
Flight Time: 10:10


Boarding was started on time and was orderly. I joined the J/*G queue and was eventually funneled through the automatic checkpoints and into the jetbridge. We boarded through 2L and the Purser was present to greet passengers and direct me down the first aisle to the right. A picture of my throne seat, 7A. There were several thrones released at online check-in so I quickly picked up this prime bulkhead seat. It is close the lavatory and galley so not as nice as 4A or 5K, but was private enough and had a nice angle towards the GE90s outside. Pre-placed at the seat are headphones, water bottle, amenity kit, pillow, and blanket.


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The Victorinox tin can amenity kit with very basic contents.


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Seat pitch is obviously no problem in these seats and the bulk head has ample footwell space for sleeping and storage space for various items.


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The view of the cabin from my seat at the bulkhead of the larger rear J cabin during boarding.


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After settling in, I was offered a menu and a PDB of either champagne, orange juice, or water. I opted for the champagne. Oshiboris were handed out afterward.


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The menu for this flight. Interestingly, this one was not Canton themed.



The view out the window as the jet bridge is pulled back. A NZ B77W is next door getting ready for its jaunt down to AKL.


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After leveling off, aperitif service was started with drinks and nuts.


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The linens were laid followed by a tray containing the appetizer, salad, condiments, and cheese plate. The tray service for the main meal is a step down from what LH offers, but at least they have removed the pamphlets they had on my previous ZRH-LAX flight.


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Catering ex-LAX is usually strong and the presentation of the seafood appetizer was very nice. Maybe LX bought NH's leftovers^^


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I had opted for the mezzaluna, but regretted the decision as soon as this was placed down. It was a pretty heavy dish and not very flavorful with just a couple of asparagus sprigs and tomatoes for some color (Italian themed^^).


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The passion fruit panna cotta was very good and always nice to see a non-packaged dessert served.


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Coffee/tea service accompanied dessert and I had a cup of chamomile tea to close out the night.


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While the throne seats are known to have narrow footwells, the bulkhead had plenty of room to sleep either on your side or back and I had a good slumber for ~6 hours. Waking up as we approached the UK, I lounged and got some work done until the cabin lights were turned on.


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The breakfast service started with the linens being laid. Drink service started with an orange juice and espresso.


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A tray was then laid down along with a selection of warm pastries. Working clockwise, we had a fruit plate, pastries, yogurt, muesli, and a poached egg with hollandaise sauce over spinach. The fruit plate of only honeydew, cantaloupe, and pineapple chunks in a bowl and the Chobani yogurt were a very non-premium offering.


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The poached egg dish is just a subtle twist on the baked egg offered on LH; however, the egg was well cooked with a runny yolk. A quite nice dish.


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I closed out breakfast with another espresso, which was also accompanied by another oshibori.


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Air to air with an EI A320 in the distance leaving DUB.


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LX chocolates were handed out as the cabin was prepared for landing. We had fairly clear skies and plenty of fall foliage spotting the hillsides as we dropped into ZRH.


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Landing in ZRH.



We pulled into our gate slightly ahead of schedule next to a XQ B738.


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Deplaning was quick through 2L being in the bulkhead and immigration was a reasonable wait time given the length of my layover in ZRH. With that, I will leave off this series here.

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Verdict

SWISS

7.8/10
Cabin8.0
Cabin crew8.0
Entertainment/wifi7.5
Meal/catering7.5

Star Alliance Lounge Business Class Section

8.0/10
Comfort7.0
Meal/catering8.5
Entertainment/wifi8.5
Services8.0

Los Angeles - LAX

7.3/10
Efficiency8.0
Access6.0
Services8.0
Cleanliness7.0

Zurich - ZRH

7.9/10
Efficiency8.0
Access8.0
Services7.0
Cleanliness8.5

Conclusion

LX has a lot of similarities to LH in that they are offer a decent product: some aspects are good and some aspects are average. Their cabins are visually attractive, but there is such a large variability in the quality of the seats (some having a ton of storage space and some having almost none; some provide direct aisle access and some having to squeeze past a seat mate). I've been lucky to always be on flights that have thrones available at OLCI, but think the experience would be average if I got stuck with one of the less desirable seats. Their catering is pretty comparable to LH, with the food "generally" being of higher quality with good presentation, but there are definitely aspects that could be better. I didn't talk too much about the crew in this report, mainly because they are very peripheral to the experience. They are professional, efficient crews with little personal interaction. I would slightly prefer LX over LH mainly due to the availability of the throne seats and easier connections in ZRH than FRA/MUC all else being equal.

Information on the route Los Angeles (LAX) Zurich (ZRH)

The contributors of Flight-Report published 5 reviews of 1 airlines on the route Los Angeles (LAX) → Zurich (ZRH).


Useful

The airline with the best average rating is SWISS with 7.8/10.

The average flight time is 11 hours and 3 minutes.

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2 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 612023 by
    KévinDC TEAM GOLD 5893 Comments

    Oh man, what a stressful context in which to be travelling! The fire seasons have been terrible these past few years.

    As for the flight itself, you are right that there are a lot of similarities with LH (at least at the time), which is not terribly surprising as things have gotten more and more standardised within the LH group over the years. Yet, LX seem still hold a slight premium edge over LH in that the catering is generally more upscale and better presented, Swiss lounges are generally better from what I've seen, and the ability to select throne seats for single travellers on LX, whereas this was not possible with the LH cabins at the time (and still most today).

    Their cabins are visually attractive, but there is such a large variability in the quality of the seats (some having a ton of storage space and some having almost none; some provide direct aisle access and some having to squeeze past a seat mate).

    Personally, I see this as a good thing. Since there are so many different types of flyers travelling for different reasons, having a variety of different seating configurations is more likely to appeal to a broader variety of travellers. When I travel alone, I would always go for a throne seat, but when travelling with family, I often try to seat out J cabins where we can sit as a family. Flying with a toddler in suites with doors isn't ideal, as much as I love the seats. Even couples travelling together want to sit together. There's definitely more and more of a premium leisure market, especially since the pandemic, so these types of cabins are better adapted for the demographic mix of passenger types than fully walled off suites (though again, don't get me wrong, those are great seats).

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Comment 612369 by
      NGO85 AUTHOR 1648 Comments

      Hi Kevin, thanks for stopping by!

      There's definitely more and more of a premium leisure market, especially since the pandemic, so these types of cabins are better adapted for the demographic mix of passenger types than fully walled off suites

      I agree that more seat diversity can find a greater reach into attracting different types of travelers, which is why the 1-2-1 really can find a good balance (as long as you can sacrifice a window seat to be close to someone ;) But the LX 2-2-1 really has no good “honeymoon” seats. Even the seats that stagger thrones have a large partition between them. I think LH would be a better option than LX for couples for that reason.

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