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On the top again
Aug 16, 2003 04:36 PM 9625 Views
(Updated Aug 10, 2005 02:22 PM)

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Hi Guys, I flew Swiss recently, and the experience was in one word - wonderful. I have flown Swissair quite a number of times, before it had gone under, that is. I always had only pleasant memories. Back then, people who were regular with Swissair, would not even think of flying with another carrier. Well, it is Swiss International Airlines now, and they have some of the best and safest planes in the world, most of thier fleet is quite young, and their service is excellent, both on and off the ground.

I had to travel the Bombay-Zurich sector again recently. As it was the only direct flight to Zurich, and as I always had only good memories of Swissair, I decided to fly Swiss. It would be the first time I flew with the carrier. I got myself a ticket reserved in Economy class, but I was a little sceptical as I had heard stories from people who had traveled with Swissair as the airline was passing over troubled water. Anyway I got to the airport on time and passed through check in. I half expected some trouble there. But surprise, surprise, nothing happened. The staff on the ground were all smiles, and didnt cause any inconvenience to any passengers. All the pre flight formalities were a breeze, and we passed through smoothly, as passengers of bigger and more famous airlines were trying their best to come to terms with stony faced staff.

On the plane, the flight attendants were only too helpful. they helped everyone to find the seats, stow the luggage, and what not. A pre flight drink was served, and the plane a brand new Airbus A330-200, left exactly on time, at 0115 hours. The flight crew were all smiles always, and assisted all passengers in all needs, without the least frown on thier faces. Then again, its their duty to smile, but one feels lots better when people smile, even if the smile is just plastered.

The aisles were wide and the seats very very comfortable, with modern upholstery clean covers and plenty of leg room. The aircraft in itself was squeaky clean (Swiss standards), and the seats could be pushed way back, which was one main reason that I could spent the whole flight without feeling the least uncomfortable. Also, each person was provided with a pillow and a blanket. Each seat has its own personal entertainment system, with an LCD screen, (of course, this is now standard in most airllines) and a wide array of movies, a large collection of MP3 music, games, BBC online news, etc. Also, the current speed, altitude, outside temperature, local time, ETA, distance and time to destination, are constantly shown on the screen in 3 languages. The currrent course of flight is also shown on screen by a graphical map. All this in economy class!

Food was served soon after takeoff, and it was the only slight disappointment, if there was any. It was tasty enough, they had veg. and non-veg. choices, it was warm, but somehow lacked the old Swissair standards. I never liked plane food anyway. There also was a wide array of drinks.

Well, I watched a movie, and then dozed off, and woke up when the crew were announcing breakfast. I didnt feel the least drowsy, and the breakfast was better than expected. The toilets also were very clean and soon the landing was announced. We landed at Zurich-Kloten 15 minutes early. The flight was uneventful, save a little turbulence. The take-off and landing were smooth.

The crew saw us off the aircraft telling that they hoped we would fly Swiss again. I tell you guys, I will. As I left the aircraft, I felt a little sleepy, but refreshed. But u cant travel without getting tired. Anyway, it was a great experience, they didnt come upto the standards of the old Swissair, but I tell you, in customer friendliness and service, most of the airlines in the world would not even come close to Swiss. Given a choice, I, and most of others on that flight wouldnt select another airline.

another thing: this was my first review--more to come! cheers!

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