Review of Brussels Airlines flight Brussels Milan in Business

Airline Brussels Airlines
Flight SN3159
Class Business
Seat 1F
Aircraft Airbus A319
Flight time 01:32
Take-off 01 Sep 23, 20:28
Arrival at 01 Sep 23, 22:00
SN   #87 out of 94 Airlines A minimum of 10 flight-reports within the past two years is required to appear in the rankings. 269 reviews
YGeorgeW
By GOLD 481
Published on 7th December 2023

weekend in italy


I had a good friend's wedding just north of Milan on Labor Day weekend. While I would have normally extended this trip to take a full week in Italy, my work situation made it impossible. I was pretty happy to be able to go at all.

Of course, despite having a easy IAD-BRU-MXP flight set up originally, Brussels Airlines would cancel its flight on me for the second year in a row. What are the odds this happens for the exact same flight and more or less in the same season? By the time the flight was cancelled, business class available on UA's IAD-BRU was full; the EWR-MXP flight was also full.  Eventually I ended up with this very unfortunate DCA-EWR-BRU-MXP routing that also had me spend a miserably long layover at BRU. Luckily, I was able to score a very-sought-after last-minute reservation at The Jane in nearby Antwerp, which I proceeded to enjoy on my layover.


Routing


photo annas-wedding

brussels airport


Customs was very smooth and efficient this morning and I got through pretty quickly.  In the same vein, it was pretty easy to re-enter the airport after my quick trip to Antwerp.


the loft by brussels airlines


I reviewed this lounge briefly back in 2021 and not much has changed.  There are a variety of seats throughout the large.  It was busy, but not packed throughout the time I was there.



Here is the beverage area:


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Most important order of business after a transatlantic redeye is the coffee machine, which made pretty decent espresso.


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One of the nice things about this lounge was the great view of gates.  You can see a smattering of Star Alliance narrowbodies here.


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More than anything I wanted to take a shower, but I was unfortunate enough to hit the week right when they were rennovating the showers and it wasn't accessible.  It would have been nice if they could have done half of the rooms at one time so that the other half could be used.  Also in the area were some recliners and sleep rooms.



The lounge has a children's area, decorated with Belgium's famous Smurfs.


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Out in front, before the check-in counter, there are a number of lockers of various size that you can store your luggage in.  I used one of these to store my carryon when I took the train to Antwerp for lunch.


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By the time I got back in the late afternoon, the sky had cleared up.


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I had to get some work done before my flight, but the Wifi wasn't very good here and it was a bit of a struggle.


photo the-loft-speed-test

sn3159


My flight to Milan was on OO-SSS, a 20 years-old A319-100.


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The gate agents initially called for boarding at 6:48pm, but we ended up just waiting in front of the doors to the jet bridge (which did not open).  Eventually, the gate agents told us of a longer delay and said it'll be about another hour–without any further information.  We ended up starting this process again at 7:50pm.


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There was only one row of J on this flight, but isn't this just about the saddest "partition" you've ever seen?


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I was seated in 1F this flight.  These are the standard intra-European J seats, but at least there are air nozzles.  This was important as initially the cabin was incredibly warm–the AC wasn't working initially (it eventually came on).


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As always, I prefer bulkhead for intra-European J since there is more legroom (and there was only 1 row of J this flight anyways).


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Doors closed at 8:18pm CET.  The purser came on the announcement and blamed that the previous flight had gotten to BRU late, but that simply wasn't true.  I could see that the plane had arrived much earlier on FlightRadar24, in plenty of time for what should have been an on-time departure.


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We pushed back at 8:28pm CET, over an hour behind schedule.  As we taxied to the runway, we caught sight of Brussels Airline Smurf-livery A320.  I believe this was the plane I took to Madrid back in 2021.  That flight report can be found here.

We took off at 8:41pm.


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Service began  around 15 minutes after takeoff, with a simple tray–some sort of tuna salad.  It tasted awful and I gave up after a bite or two.


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Just water for me this flight.


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At least the macarons were good.


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We landed at 9:53pm and reached our gate 7 minutes later–1 hour late.


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Verdict

Brussels Airlines

6.0/10
Cabin7.0
Cabin crew8.0
Entertainment/wifi5.0
Meal/catering4.0

THE LOFT by Brussels Airlines

6.5/10
Comfort8.0
Meal/catering7.0
Entertainment/wifi5.0
Services6.0

Brussels - BRU

8.3/10
Efficiency7.0
Access8.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness9.0

Milan - MXP

6.8/10
Efficiency5.0
Access6.0
Services7.0
Cleanliness9.0

Conclusion

Lounge: The Loft is a fairly comfortable Schengen lounge, with all the usual amenities and not as crowded as some of ones I've been to in Amsterdam or Frankfurt. The big issue

Cabin & Seat: Intra-European J is not comfortable and barely recline, but bulkhead seats are better than others.

Service: Service was efficient and pleasant, but there's little else to say about it.

Meal & Catering: The meal was pretty bad aside from the macarons.

Bottom Line: The delay was very annoying especially given the complete lack of communication about the reason and what to expect. Otherwise it was a fairly normal intra-European flight (albeit with worse than usual catering).

Information on the route Brussels (BRU) Milan (MXP)

Les contributeurs de Flight-Report ont posté 3 avis concernant 1 compagnies sur la ligne Brussels (BRU) → Milan (MXP).


Useful

La compagnie qui obtient la meilleure moyenne est Brussels Airlines avec 6.8/10.

La durée moyenne des vols est de 1 heures et 25 minutes.

  More information

2 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 641091 by
    KévinDC TEAM SILVER 6739 Comments
    Brussels Airlines feel like the LCC bastard child of the Lufthansa group, with their intra-European Business class being barely better than the actual LCCs of the group like Eurowings! The lack of curtain between cabins or central table just feels cheap and the catering is meh at best. Perfectly fine when connecting from long-haul J as part of the same ticket, but not a good value as a standalone product.

    Thanks for sharing!
    • Comment 641144 by
      YGeorgeW GOLD AUTHOR 275 Comments
      Brussels Airlines feel like the LCC bastard child of the Lufthansa group

      Excellent description here, I keep giving them a second chance, but really, never again. I've never looked at the cash prices, but certainly wouldn't purchase.

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