Saturday, September 29, 2012

Denver to Frankfurt and Helsinki - Lufthansa A340 & A320 Business Class

“I flew around the world last week” is fun to say. Give it a try, I’ll wait. Earlier in the year I booked US Airways’ around the world award (on the award chart as a round trip to North Asia) and ever since I was patiently waiting for this trip. Once my departure date finally came, I arrived at Denver International Airport early and I was almost jumping with excitement when I saw the aircraft taxi to the gate in Denver.
My Trip Map, from
The first flight was on Lufthansa’s A340-600 aircraft from Denver to Frankfurt.  I was eager to fly a new airplane model (for me) and this one is special; it is the longest Airbus made.  It looks cool from the outside, but the plane feels crowded, even in business class.  I took a lap of coach and it seemed to be a never ending expanse of seats, all filled. 
Pretzel Roll and Tender Steak Appetizer 
Back in business class, the seat is flat, but at a noticeable angle, 30ish degrees, to the floor (more detail in my MUC-NRT post).  It is more than six feet long and has decent, but not great, padding.  Each seat has its own video on demand system with a mix of music, movies, and tv shows.  A bottled water and amenity kit are waiting at each seat when boarding.  Lufthansa knows this business class seat (First class is a large recliner, even more dated) is at least one generation behind the current marketplace standard and will be upgrading their fleet with the new seats similar to those on the 747-800.  There are a few A340's with these new seats, but I didn’t luck out.
Business Class Steak Entree
Cheese Plate and Another Pretzel Roll
I didn’t sleep well on my flight; I tossed and turned for a while then just watched a few movies before breakfast.  Sun rise came quickly and I had an omelet.  It was a little bland, but the tater-tots and coffee were both great and picked me up.  
Lufthansa's Business Class Breakfast
Once on the ground, I quickly cleared customs (thank you Irish passport) and went straight to the arrivals lounge.  Lufthansa has an welcome lounge for business and first class passengers on the ground floor in FRA (Lufthansa and SWISS passengers only, Star Alliance Gold won’t help).  It has showers, good food spread, and comfortable seating.  It is on the ground side of security, so you’ll need to leave early to clear security and find your gate.  I left a little premature and went to the business class lounge by my gate.  It was crowded, but had a hot dog cart with good German mustard, so I didn’t care.  I also had an ice cream cone and a Scotch.  Not a bad lounge really and not a bad way to circle the globe.
Lufthansa FRA Business Class Lounge Hot Dog Cart
Crowded Lounge in Frankfurt
Lufthansa has invested in their intra-Europe inflight experience with new seats and upgraded meals.  European business class seats are just coach seats with the middle seat empty.  The seats are comfortable for a 3 hour or shorter flight too.  The flight attendants were friendly and very attentive on this flight.  The meal was a delicious currywurst paired with a salmon something and mint chocolate dessert.  It was a very enjoyable flight and I read up on Helsinki on the way. 
All Delicious, But No Pretzel Rolls
Once the flight landed, I headed straight for the tourist information desk to buy a Helsinki Card and then catch the Finnair City bus into town.

No comments:

Post a Comment