Why an old US Airways Envoy Class review? As we remain in lockdown, read this introduction to my current Balkans trip report.
To begin my journey to the Balkans, I had to get to Europe…and I flew on US Airways on its then recently-introduced A330-300 “Envoy” business class seat. Spoiler alert: the journey was incredibly pleasant.
This walk down memory lane is actually not all that irrelevant in 2020. The business class cabin and seats remain unchanged if you catch the A330-200 (the A333 is now retired). In fact, even the dishes haven’t changed beyond the logos. So even now, expect the same seat if you choose an A330-200 with American Airlines.
Before the flight, I spent some time in US Airways’ Envoy Lounge in Philadelphia (PHL), a special lounge reserved for departing business class passengers. It was spacious and had additional food offerings over standard US Airways clubs. I had a bowl of soup and some salty snacks. The tarmac views were also excellent. I miss the beautiful US Airways A330 livery.
Boarding begin 45 minutes before departure, but I was one of the last to board. This trip was before I became anal (for lack of a better word) about boarding first and taking unobstructed cabin pictures, so my number of photos are quite limited.
US Airways 708
Philadelphia (PHL) – Munich (MUC)
Tuesday, June 26
Depart: 6:30 PM
Arrive: 8:50 AM+1
Duration: 08hr, 20min
Distance: 3,950 miles
Aircraft: Airbus A330-300
Seat: 4F (Business Class)
A few observations about this flight:
The seat was very comfortable…it was my first time flying on a reverse-herringbone business class seat and even though I somehow wound up with a seat in the center section instead of a window seat, I still thought there was sufficient privacy and I slept very well.
Service was outstanding. The flight attendant who took care of my side of the cabin was professional and friendly, welcoming each passenger onboard with a smile and carefully monitoring beverage levels during the flight. It’s one thing to be attentive; it’s another to smile. I appreciated the smile.
Food was surprisingly tasty. The jumbo shrimp appetizer and Caesar salad was delicious, as was the bread. I no longer order steak on airplanes unless I am feeling particularly adventurous, but back then would order it every time it was on the menu. This time, it was the right choice. The meat was cooked medium and the Béarnaise sauce, potatoes, and asparagus were perfect accompaniments. Notice the crockery looks familiar…it’s still in use today, just with new logos. Ice cream sundae with cappuccino for dessert. I wasn’t expecting much for breakfast, but breakfast included a delicious warm quiche, cinnamon croissant, and fruit…a prefect breakfast.
Here are some pictures from the flight:
How I Booked My Ticket
To further date this trip, I used bmi miles to book this trip. US Airways flight carried no fuel surcharges and I was able to book a one-way business class ticket for 18,750 miles plus £127.50. Those were the days!
The outbound flight was in June…my Balkans trip did not begin until August. Yes, it was the summer of love. Before my Balkans trip began, I spent two months courting my future wife. But as for US Airways, it was a very pleasant first experience in Envoy class.