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READ MORE FROM THIS TRIP
Introduction: From Cold To Hot and Checking The #1 Country Off of My Bucketlist
• Review: Plaza Premium Lounge (Toronto Airport)
• Review: Air France / KLM Lounge (Toronto Airport)
• Review: Air France A350 (Business); Toronto – Paris
• Review: Air France A320 (Business); Paris – Stockholm
• Review: The Generator Hostel (Stockholm)
• Review: Norrsken Lounge (Stockholm Arlanda)
• Review: Menzies Executive Lounge (Stockholm Arlanda)
• Review: American Express Lounge by Pontus (Stockholm Arlanda)
• Review: Stockholm Arlanda Lounge (Stockholm Arlanda)
• Review: Qatar Airways A350-1000 (Business); Stockholm – Doha
• Review: Four Points By Sheraton Doha
• Review: The Westin Doha Resort and Spa
• Review: Al Safwa First Class Lounge (Doha)
• Review: Qatar Airways 777-300ER (Business); Doha – Muscat
• Review: Sheraton Oman Hotel (Muscat)
• Review: Al Bustan Palace, A Ritz Carlton Hotel (Muscat)
• Review: Primeclass Lounge (Muscat)
• Review: Turkish Airlines 737-800 (Business); Muscat – Instanbul
• Review: Turkish Airlines Lounge (Istanbul Airport)
• Review: Turkish Airlines Lounge 787-9 (Istanbul – Atlanta)
After enjoying the Primeclass Lounge in Muscat for a couple hours, I headed over to my boarding gate, C7. At the gate, I went through ticket and ID validation before entering the actual gate waiting area.
Within a few minutes of arriving at the gate, an announcement advised passengers to line up as check-in would begin soon. There was a separate line for priority boarding and economy class.
This segment would would be 5hrs, 50minutes to Istanbul where I would spend a few hours before connecting to my final destination of Atlanta.
HOW I BOOKED THE FLIGHT
I redeemed 85,000 United Mileage Plus miles (+ $52USD) while the retail fare for my specific flight was $2,516USD.
United miles can be extremely useful for flying on United or Star Alliance partners. This trip is easy to replicate with credit cards such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Chase Ink Preferred, or Chase Sapphire Reserve.
Turkish 737-800 BUSINESS CLASS REVIEW
As I mentioned in my review of the Al Bustan Palace, this flight would be the first segment in my return back to the states with the following schedule:
Muscat (MCT) – Istanbul (IST)
Scheduled Departure: 02:25 AM
Scheduled Arrival: 07:15 AM
Duration: 5hr, 50min
Seat: 4A (Business Class)
I was the first person to attempt to board the plane. Unfortunately, when I arrived at the boarding door, I was told to wait as the cleaning crew was still cleaning the plane. A lined formed in the jet bridge and unsurprisingly when asked to board there was a ‘free for all’ so I missed out on the chance to take unobstructed pictures of the business class cabin, but made it safely onboard the aircraft (barely).
Because of the rush, there was no greeting or checking of tickets by the crew when boarding the plane.
Business class on the 737-800 is four rows in a 2-2 configuration. While these obviously aren’t industry leading seats and lie-flat, the nice thing is that legroom is quite good and the seats are better business class seats than the intra-Europe business class products on Air France, British Airways or Lufthansa where “business class” are actually economy-style seats with the middle seat blocked.
In the case of an intra-Europe flight, I’d choose a bulkhead but given the good legroom on Turkish, it wasn’t necessary.
Each seat has it own foot rest also.
I found the manually-controlled seat adjustment panel on the armrest closest to the window.
Not only are Turkish’s seats comfortable, but the service is one of my favorites, despite the rushed boarding process.
As soon as boarding was completed, the crew promptly introduced themselves, offered a selection of international newspapers, and pre-departure drinks with the choice of fresh raspberry juice, fresh orange juice, lime-mint juice, or water.
I ordered the orange juice which delicious, light and refreshing.
We were also offered menus and some packaged hazelnuts.
At 2:20AM the captain announced our flight time of 5 hours and 5 minutes, our cruising altitude of 32,000 feet and that he expected we would be on-time.
At 2:25PM boarding was complete, and the main cabin door closed. At that point there were a total of six business class passengers (4 of which were pilots, I assume positioning for work since they were in uniform).
At 2:30AM we began our pushback, at which point the safety video was screened and the lights were dimmed.
Located directly next to us was this beautiful bird…an Oman Air 787 dreamliner.
We had a really quick taxi to the runway and were airborne by 2:35AM.
We had a smooth takeoff and approximately 10 minutes after takeoff noise cancelling headphones were distributed, but best to bring to your own.
The tray table folded out from the arm rest closest to the window.
I was also given an amenity kit that included earplugs, eye shades, a dental hygiene kit, socks, pen, comb/brush, and bottles of lip balm and lotion.
During takeoff I explored the in-flight entertainment (IFE) selection on the small television located between the two business class seats.
The IFE selection is quite good. At least two-dozen recent Hollywood movies were on offer as well as TV programs, games, and music. My only frustration was the plane had no wi-fi, however, each seat was equipped with a universal power outlet and USB port.
About 15 minutes after takeoff the seatbelt sign was turned off, at which point I checked out the lavatory, which was spotless and had Molton Brown amenities.
About 15 minutes after takeoff the crew came around, offered cool moist towels, and inquired what we wanted to eat and drink.
The menu read as follows:
Service on this flight was amazing. Turkish flight attendants tend to be courteous, professional, but not always friendly.
One reason that I’m a fan of Turkish Airlines is the food. Generally, the food is light and incredible. I had eaten quite a bit in the lounge because I had planned on getting some rest on the plane.
The appetizer plate included marinated olives, fresh fruit, a danish, and vegetables.
The main course was served several minutes later and included Gozleme flat pastry with cheese, sautéed potatoes, and a grilled red pepper.
After the meal service, a cart came down the aisle with after-dinner drinks including liquor, coffee, and tea. Sadly, no espresso or cappuccino onboard.
I worked for awhile then managed to snooze for the next few hours. People often complain about Turkish cabins being too warm, but that was not the case on this flight. On the contrary, it was so perfect that the next thing I knew the lights were being turned on and the pilot announced we had started our descent into IST.
We had a short five minute taxi to our gate, and were there 5 minutes ahead of schedule.
This was another predictably good flight on Turkish. The 737-800 business class seat is comfortable enough for a 5.5hr journey and the service and food was great.
In my experience, Turkish’s catering is equally impressive on their short haul as it is on their long haul flights.
My one complaint is that Turkish did not have wifi, but that may have been a blessing because I needed some rest and to disconnect.
Overall, this was a great flight as the crew were extremely attentive and friendly. It just reminds you of how little effort other airlines put into their product on somewhat regional flights.
I was definitely recommend Turkish business class if you have the chance to fly with them.
If you’ve flown Turkish Airlines’ business class, what was your experience like?