MCO-DUB Business ClassBack to Forum
MCO-DUB (Business Class)
This was our flight home after a very pleasant holiday in Orlando. The scheduled departure time was 2150, and in keeping with my preference for allowing plenty of time to deal with the various procedures, we arrived at the airport at 6pm. The Hertz returns area was well signposted, and within a few minutes of transferring our luggage from car to trolley a very friendly agent approached and completed the formalities very quickly.
This was only my second time to use Hertz, and I was very impressed with their service, both on collection and return.
Going to the departure area involves a lift to the basement of the car park and taking the moving walkway (underneath the road adjoining the terminal) and a further lift to the check in area. Fortunately, the Aer Lingus area was close by. It is a separate area, directly across from the majority of check in desks, but a little cramped given that most passengers have lots of luggage. The Aer Club and Business Class area is clearly marked, and the efficient agents checked us in promptly and issued our boarding passes. At this stage we were told that the lounge now used by Aer Lingus is Club MCO, a few steps from the departure gate. This was very welcome as the former lounge (United Club) was in a separate part of the terminal and required a shuttle to reach.
We proceeded to security. There is no priority lane for Business Class passengers, and we joined a queue which took almost half an hour to clear. The staff directing passengers appeared completely disinterested whereas those carrying out the actual screening were very friendly indeed whilst being thorough.
The departure area used by Aer Lingus has a reasonable range of shops and restaurants, and we browsed the duty free before making our way to the Lounge.
Club MCO LOUNGE
Aer Lingus Business Class passengers are invited to use the Club MCO Lounge.
This is beside the departure gates and far more convenient than the previous lounge. The lounge is accessed by stairs or lifts, and staff are very welcoming. However, no effort was made to enquire if we have visited previously or to inform us where food and drinks were located.
It is quite a large area with a variety of seats available. Full length windows would give a good view of the apron in daytime, and allow lots of natural light.
There is a small self service counter for soft drinks and coffee, a staffed bar with a very good range of complimentary drinks (including cocktails and sparkling wine) and a self service food area.
• Soup (choice of tomato or vegetable)
• Bread rolls
• Sandwiches & wraps
• Savoury nibbles
The sandwiches were very well filled, and tomato soup was particularly nice.
There was a good range of newspapers and magazines available also. The access code for complimentary wi-fi was readily available.
Unusually, the lounge closes at 9pm, and two announcements were made as this time approached. However as our boarding was due to begin shortly after 9pm, this wasn’t an issue. However, had our flight been delayed, it could well be a concern.
Overall this was a very enjoyable experience. The soup and sandwiches were very nice, and followed by a couple of glasses of sparkling wine made if a fitting way to end a great holiday.
The same staff who checked in the flight carried out the boarding process. Initially, passengers requiring additional time to board were called first, followed by Aer Club and Business Class passengers.
We were warmly welcomed on board the Airbus A330, and shown to our seats (5A & 6A). There is ample stowage space overhead and the seat has a number of storage spaces for books, shoes, etc. These single seats (colloquially known as “thrones”) have far more personal space than paired seats and are ideal for lone travellers. Due to my ineptitude, I was unable to book adjoining seats for my wife and I, but we were curious to try the “thrones” and we found them very comfortable and pleasant.
Shortly after boarding we were offered a pre-flight drink, and continuing in holiday mode (the holiday doesn’t end until the plane lands at home”), we both chose a glass of champagne.
After the usual safety briefing and flight information, including from the Captain, we taxied and were on our way.
This is where Aer Lingus Business Class really shines: the seats, in-flight entertainment, high quality catering are beyond reproach. The service from the cabin crew is equally good: pleasant, efficient and very professional.
Shortly after reaching cruising speed, the Cabin crew began drinks service. There is a good choice of drinks:
• Jameson 12yo
• Scotch Teachers
• Jack Daniels
• Bombay Sapphire Gin
• CDC Gin
• Tanquery Gin
• Gordons Gin
• Smirnoff Vodka
• Hennessy Brandy
• Magners Cider
• Barbera Appassimento (from San Silvestro in Piedmont Italy)
• Tannat Reserve RPF (from Bodega Pisano in Progreso,Uruguay)
• Blind River Sauvignon Blanc (from Awatere Valley in Marlborough, New Zealand)
• Riesling Reserve (from Gustave Lorentz in Alsace, France)
• Jean Pernet Tradition Brut NV Champagne, France
We opted for champagne (again!) which was served with a selection of canapes.
There is the option to have dinner served on a single tray for those wishing to maximise their sleep time: seared salmon, red quinoa and butternut squash pilaf, sautéed kale, served with a pomodoro sauce.
This was the Dinner menu:
• Grilled beef fillet, red bliss mashed potato, asparagus, cherry tomato confit, red wine sauce.
• Seared chicken breast, potato au gratin, grilled zucchini, buttered baby carrots, de poulette sauce.
• seared salmon, red quinoa and butternut squash pilaf, sautéed kale, served with a pomodoro sauce.
• Raspberry tart
• A selection of cheese with apple and raisin chutney.
The meals are served on quality chinaware with crisp linen, and are individually prepared by the cabin crew. The meal service was first class, and our glasses topped up regularly during the meal.
We both opted for beef which was delicious and very well presented.
After dinner I read for a short time and then settled down to sleep. At the touch of a button, the seat moves into a lie flat position, and with a good pillow and blanket, I had a good four hours sleep.
About 90 minutes before landing, Breakfast was served. This again was served on crisp white linen with elegant crockery, and comprised a fruit platter, a really good bacon roll, and excellent tea & coffee.
We landed in Dublin almost an hour ahead of schedule, and there was a lengthy taxi to our stand. However, we were parked at the furthest point from passport control and this lengthy walk felt like an eternity after a long flight. Happily there was no queue at passport control and we completed the process within a couple of minutes.
After a very short wait, our bags were delivered, which we loaded onto a trolley (no charge in Dublin, unlike the $5 trolley rental in MCO).
Aer Lingus have a very pleasant arrivals lounge in the baggage hall which we have used in the past. This time we decided to give it a miss, and made our way to the car park.
We parked in the Terminal 2 surface car park. This is literally a couple of minutes away from the Terminal building, and for the convenience of avoiding shuttle buses to the satellite car parks is well worth the additional cost.
This was a very enjoyable flight. From the moment we checked in to collecting our bags, every aspect of Aer Lingus service delivery was faultless, making our journey home very enjoyable. The seats are very comfortable, particularly for sleeping. We believe that Aer Lingus Business Class represents excellent value for money. One detail worth mentioning is that within a few days of flying, Avios and Tier Points are credited to one’s Aer Club account.
Dublin Airport Terminal 2 surface car park is particularly convenient for Aer Lingus passengers, both departing and arriving. The Club MCO Lounge is a very pleasant and convenient lounge and well worth a visit.8 Dec 2018
Thanks for these reviews, Pat – very helpful. I’m looking at a trip to see the mouse infestation with the family in 2020 and I do fancy Aer Lingus as it seems much better than the tired BA product from LGW plus that pre-clearance is darned handy.
Best wishes to you and the family for the festive season.
1F8 Dec 2018