This was a one way flight from Malta to Nuremburg, to start a business trip.
From arriving at -2 hours, the check in process took 1 hour and 25 minutes and could only be described as resembling the chimps tea party at Whipsnade zoo (for those of a certain age.) This for a flight with I estimate less than 100 pax on board.
It then took a further 10 minutes to get a boarding pass for the extra legroom seat I had paid 20€ to reserve.
Not a great start, especially as the handling agent did not make a single PA or send someone to let the pax know what was happening. Totally unacceptable.
In comparison, the flight was well managed and the crew friendly and efficient, delivering a free soft drink and a miniature of Henkel Trocken (4€), as well as a ‘wurst’ sandwich that resembled something made in the local corner shop, rather than a factory – very fresh, tasty and filling.
The 737-700 appeared to be relatively new and was immaculately clean, with the extra legroom being appreciated on this flight a little over 2 hours long. The seat itself was a Recaro type, similar to the LH/LX seat that is now being replaced. Those who know this seat will recall that the padding is slightly on the thin side, but acceptable for 2-3 hours, but that it does give the perception of extra space and add to the exit hatch row spacing, the overall experience was good for a pan European sector.
Nuremburg airport was quiet on arrival, with a Turkish aircraft departing as we taxied in. Consequently our luggage was delivered quickly and from plane to exit took only about 10 minutes.
The underground railway connection to the main railway station, for my Deutsche Bahn onward journey to Hannover, was efficient and I notice that services left about every 10 minutes, with a 12 minute journey. This was really great and felt really integrated, especially as the entrance to the underground was directly outside the terminal and consisted on a single flight of stairs down to the platform.
All in all, the check in process was a shambles, but the flight still left on time (one of the advantages of Malta airport is that it tends to be efficient in flight despatch), was painless and arrival was efficient, with an easy connection onwards.
I would use Air Berlin again on this route.