It was so enjoyable to fly on Turkish Airlines again, reminding me of what intra-Europe service could be like on other carriers.
I must admit, the A321neo was not planned. Rather, it was a fortunate last-minute aircraft swap from an older A321. I say fortunate not because it would have been a difference in terms of the soft product, but because the A321neo is equipped with wi-fi onboard and the flight from Frankfurt to Istanbul took place in the middle of my work day.
Sadly, the internet did not work onboard. Everything else about the flight, however, was lovely.
The business class cabin includes four rows of “real” business class in a 2-2 configuration. I say “real” because the Continental European airlines like Air France, British Airways, and Lufthansa (which competes directly with Turkish on this route) do not offer such seats, only economy class seats with a blocked middle.
The seats look unique, principally because of the privacy divider between seats. It is actually quite handy, as you can lean against it if you want to sleep. The seat also includes generous recline and a footrest, plus a power outlet with separate USB charger.
A lovely lunch was served after takeoff, that included Turkish mezze to start followed by a choice between “Karniyarik” (traditional stuffed eggplant with minced beef) or sea bass, or pasta. I’m trying to avoid red meat this year in favor of fish options, but I chose the traditional Turkish dish and was not disappointed.
Service was not only well-intentioned, but well-executed. Lunch began immediately after takeoff and flight attendants were very proactive in ensuring drinks were refilled. Passengers were addressed by name when initial drink orders were taken.
I had a very interesting seatmate, which I will dedicate a separate post to. When not chatting with him, I enjoyed the expansive IFE library, that included hundreds of movies.
It’s not a revolutionary seat, but the new A321neo business class seat is very comfortable and the entire business class product is just a step above the competition.
Arriving in Istanbul I faced a hotel dilemma ahead of my flight to Atlanta on the 787-9.