A 737-900ER turned up at Edinburgh, unexpectedly replacing the usual A319 on the flight down to Istanbul. I had pre-selected seat 8A.
Check-in was well managed with three queues – business class/star alliance gold, bag drop and full check in. I had not checked in online, so joined the short queue and was served within a few minutes at the empty business class desk. My bags were checked through to Antalya.
I don’t have any status on Star Alliance, so I took the opportunity to grab some lunch in one of the restaurants in the airport and headed down to gate 3 for boarding, which was underway when I got there. There was a fast track style channel for Business Class passengers and I saw several people being turned away, so it was enforced.
Boarding was quick and efficient. The first things you notice on entering the 737 are the superb looking business class seats. Unfortunately, there was no promotional upgrade fare to Antalya but if you are flying to Istanbul, you can upgrade most tickets for around £150 each way. Be cautious to check it isn’t an A319 first though – these have adjustable seats and I don’t think it would be worth it. The cabin also had pleasant lighting and 777 style baggage lockers, which gave a spacious feel.
My seat was leather with an adjustable headrest and plenty of leg room (it felt like 34″ but I’m going to guess 32″ and a thin seat) but a tad on the firm side for my liking. Soon after take off, my neighbour in 8B spotted an empty row ahead and moved. Good result 🙂
The AVOD was excellent with a good choice of films. I settled back to watch one when lunch arrived. I had Salmon on a bed of potato mixed with yoghurt followed by beef and some kind of cous cous finishing with cheesecake. I would say the food is on a par with BA’s WTP and was very impressive, tasty and enough to keep me going until dinner.
The crew offered a drink with dinner and came back with tea and coffee but that was it. I have heard lots of people say that Turkish Airlines crews are not great at handing out drinks and this seemed to be the case but otherwise the crew seemed happy and friendly and service was with a smile.
We arrived into Istanbul on schedule. It was a bit of a task working out where to go to transfer to my domestic flight but I got there in the end.
One final note on the 737 – I noted that seat 7A appears to have no window, whilst 7F does.