Welcome to part two of the trip report! To recap, this is a nine part series reviewing different airline, hotel and lounge products - as well as some tips on touring around Iceland - which Sarah and I were able to try out as part of our London and Iceland adventure a few weeks ago. This is how the the trip report will be split up:
What I often look forward to most when flying in business and first class is the onboard food and drink selection. Sure, it's fun to compare the seats and how comfortable or wide they are (both as a bed and as a reclining chair), but I find that an airline's food and service vary much more than the quality of their seat; that's especially true today, when almost all international first and business class seats recline into a full 180-degree-bed! Unfortunately, this flight took place over Passover. That meant, at least for Sarah and I, there was no food we could eat on the flight. In anticipation for this however we packed a full duffle bag full of kosher-for-Passover products which could be eaten on board with little-to-no preparation. The reaction of the flight attendants was pricelass - I only wish I had a picture of their faces as we unloaded our deli meats, nuts, chocolates, and mashed-potatoes-to-go. Since I don't have a picture, just imagine you're a waiter at the most expensive five-star restaurant in Manhattan which requires pre-payment of $500 per person. In walks a well dressed couple who ask to start with a glass of water each. After giving them time to look at the mouth-watering menu full of the best cuts of meat, the finest seafoods and perfectly-paired wines and champagnes, the two of them say "thanks, but we're ok with the crackers and mashed potatoes we brought." What would your face look like as they turned you away and proceed to eat chocolate bars they brought from home... That's the face our flight attendants (not surprisingly) gave us.
That is a picture of just part of our goodies. I'll spare you all from the others, as they are even more depressing than that. I also didn't bother taking any pictures of the kosher meal as - though I usually LOVE the kosher meals on flights - this kosher-for-Passover offering was really sub-par. But just because I couldn't eat their food doesn't mean I couldn't get a good view and picture out of it. Take a look at those dessert offerings! That's strawberry shortcake, cheeses and an assortment of fruit.
Anymore talk about food and I'll start crying. So, onto the seats and service. In all honesty, it's very hard to judge the service when you can't ask for anything but water. I must say though, every 30 minutes or so one of the flight attendants came by and continued to double-check if there was anything they could bring us. I tried to explain that it was a religious thing, but they didn't seem to understand. "OK sir, but how about some Easter chocolates?" Uggchhhh...... We did end up going back to get some boiling water for tea and for our instant mashed-potato dishes (which were so
yummy gross!) which of course they gladly helped out with.
The new business class design which Lufthansa currently has on all 747-8i and (are working to retrofit into the rest of their long-haul fleet) is really sleek looking. It isn't quite as exclusive as the USAirways Business Class (formerly known as Envoy) seat, and is nowhere near as exclusive as their first class product, but I find it to be quite condusive to those traveling together. While some of the other business class products out there have slightly wider seats or longer beds, what I like about these seats is the ability to have a conversation with the person next to you... Without having to strain your neck! Unfortunately, for those traveling solo, I suspect the small footholes could become an issue when both you and your seatmate are sleeping.
As you can see, the 2-2 configuration only gives aisle access to half of the business class passengers; compare that to airlines (like British Airways, for example) who configure their cabins in a 1-2-1 configuration which allows for every passenger to have direct aile access. As I said, the configuration, coupled with the fact that all seats angle in towards each other, make this a great option for those traveling together. If you're traveling solo, it may not be the best option - but it's certainly an improvement over their old 2-2-2 angeled-flat business class seats!
The beds, in my option could be a bit wider, but they are comprable to other business class products around the world. If you're used to flying coach, they're incredible! If you're used to flying business, I'd rank them slightly above average, and if you're used to flying first you'll be (as I just mentioned) mostly disappointed by the width. They do go fully-flat, though the "foot-cubby" leaves something to be desired. What I found to be a great position - I forgot to mention, Sarah and I sat in the bulkhead of the upper deck, and I think this trick would only work if sitting in the first row of your business class cabin - was having the bed fully flat, but leaning my back up against the bulkead. This way, I put a pillow behind my back and was able to put my fee up and work with my laptop on my lap. As you know, the shells which the seats go down into (when turning the seat into a bed) are curved; so if you were to try to sit up with your back against the shell, it would be extremely uncomfortable. Between that position to get work done and the fully-flat bed, I was a happy camper.
Next thing you know we were landing in Frankfurt, I "returned my seat to its full and upright position" and Sarah and I were ready to catch our connecting flight to London! Have you been on Lufthansa's new 747-8i? What about any of their other longhaul aircraft with the new business class... What were your thoughts?comments powered by Disqus