Swiss business class Europe

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This topic contains 29 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  KSHaggag 4 Jul 2019
at 11:50
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  • Swissdiver
    Participant

    Last week, I flew 4 times with Swiss (return trip with a stop at ZRH), using different hard products configurations. So here is a short report.

    Soft product
    Swiss crew can be quite pompous, particularly in two cases out of the four, but they delivered the service that is:

    • A bottle of water and a towel once the passenger is seated (so during the boarding), which is nice
    • A set of three tapas, two salty and one sweet, once airborne. I cannot speak about the sweet (I am not very desert oriented), but the salty ones where good in general. This was followed by some drinks. White wine was a Swiss Chasselas (very basic), served from a regular bottle (nice). Champagne was available as well, but I am not sure liquors were.
    • No wardrobe for jackets though

    In comparison to other European business class, this was probably superior, especially for short flights (all were below 60 minutes).

    Hard product

    • A321 (20+ years old!): I hate this aircraft! That said I had an exit row with two seats only, so I didn’t have a neighbour. But it is far from the galley, so the passenger might not have a drink on short flights (this actually happened in economy on that flight – crew just said “sorry, we could not make it”). Recaro seats are all right.
    • CS300: I flew on it already a couple of times and I enjoy the aircraft. Seating is 2 + 3 and in business class, there is only one passenger on one side, and 2 (middle seat free) on the other one. I forgot however the first row was not a good idea on this aircraft (very little leg room due to the bulkhead, with tables in the armrest, not allowing the legs to go left or right – very uncomfortable), but was lucky to be able to move to second row. Recaro seats are all right though.
    • A319, old seats (20+ years old!): First row was rather uncomfortable. I could however put my legs slightly to the right (I was on 1C) which saved me. But no more. Better be squeezed on row 2 or 3.
    • A320 (20+ years old!): With the new seats, the first row is somewhat less uncomfortable. But the table is still in the armrest. So the same comment as above prevails. On this flight, the last rows in business class couldn’t have a drink! In fairness to the crew, turbulences disturbed the service. Still it is not a good idea to be in the back on short flights.

    All in all, first row is not a good idea on Swiss European flights, but when there is a side with two seats, it is rather nice to be alone. And seats do recline, which is nice.


    Ekond222
    Participant

    …I imagine having an ‘exit raw’ to be of discomfort to most people…

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    capetonianm
    Participant

    I did 4 sectors last week on LX, two in C, two in Y.

    Superb product, probably the best thing about travelling LX is the ZRH transit. It beats just about every other major European airport hands down.

    I am not sure that the difference between the hard product in the two classes merits the price difference, we took it on the outward journey as it was only abou €80, but for the inbound it would have been more than double.


    Swissdiver
    Participant

    I am not sure that the difference between the hard product in the two classes merits the price difference, we took it on the outward journey as it was only abou €80, but for the inbound it would have been more than double.

    No difference in terms of hard product. And, yes, Swiss proposes good upgrade deals provided all legs are on Swiss.


    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    I recently flew business with Swiss from GVA – LCY, then LHR – ZRH. Both product offerings were quite different.

    GVA – LCY on the A220
    Geneva Senator lounge, despite all their hype, it’s small, cramped and crowded. Food (breakfast) was poor. Good quality but little choice.
    Boarding was by bus, where they roped off the back section of the bus for business pax. The bus was very crowded and people started to go under the rope, then came the prams and pushchairs, and I presumed fellow buisness class pax and senators.

    I was first off the bus and first on the plane, seat 1A. After an endless stream of passengers, and how they all fit on the bus i don’t know – I think sardines have it better – I discovered I was the only one in Business. Wonderful personalized service, almost like having one’s own valet, and the food selection from a special menu only on the Geneva flights, was very good. Paid for in Economy but free from the menu in Business.

    Arrival in City was disappointing as despite being first off I had to board a bus, and no roped off section here, so the bus was very crowded by the time everyone had been packed in. After almost 10 minutes we then drove all of 50 yards and of course I was not the first to get off this time! I really can’t understand why we had to take the bus for such a short distance?

    LHR – ZRH on the A321
    Well LHR is an airport I hate. FRA is like paradise in comparison! Tube ride out was fine and straight to security, where I was searched from top to bottom three times by a most unfriendly person!!! Then my bag was flagged and searched by an equally unfriendly woman, who demanded to know why I had 20 boxes of Beecham’s and Panadol as you’re only allowed to buy 2! I asked her if this was a prohibited item to which she replied with a curt “NO”. I’m not normally like this but I then told her it was none of her business and she demanded to know. My reply was to tell her it was to get me through the stress of having to deal with the most inefficient and unfriendly security staff of any airport I’ve traveled through. At that she turned her back and I could go. What she completely missed was my deodorant and Dettol (liquid) Neither was in a plastic bag but scattered through my case.

    The Senator lounge is brilliant, though it was crowded at this time, with a great selection of food and drink.

    Boarding was fast and efficient and again I was first onboard, seat 1A, but business was almost full this time, though I had all three seats to myself.
    Service was good, but the meal was poor, not in quality, but it was not to my liking.

    3 users thanked author for this post.

    KSHaggag
    Participant

    I took 8 flights in Swiss Business Class on various European legs last February .Everything was as expected without major surprises .All in all a very decent product within Europe ( my favorite so far on intra Europe flights ) ,HOWEVERRRRRRRRRRR the big disappointment then on ALL flights shorter than 2hours where a cold meal/snack is served was the quality of the food served which is really unexpected of Swiss which for me has been and still is offering the BEST product among European airlines notably on European flights !!! Let me admit that on all flights shorter than 2hours from and to Zurich specifically the meal was dreadfully disappointing with much lower quality ingredients than what Swiss has been serving so far .I had a conversation with the purser on EVVVERY flight and asked why the meal did not look or feel or taste like we have been accustomed .I did feel the caterer had changed ..well ,…I was NOT wrong .It was explained to me in a very diplomatic way that (Mami) Lufthansa is adopting a new catering concept on LX flights in Europe for a trial period ,pending customers feedback .Let me assure you that my feedback was harsh ..I meant it ..As much as I ( LOVE ) SWISS ,I felt furious for such a LH approach jeopardizing the unique ,unmatchable swissness and swiss food quality ..poorer ingredients ,very low- cost look and feel of the meal although LX has been bosating THE MOST LUXURIOUS snacks and cold meals in Europe among all airlines ..They said LH was trying to unify the meals on LH and LX flights ..well ,LH food within EU was always just OK but Swiss food was superbly outstanding …
    What a pity !
    Let alone the less-than- 2 hours LX flights to/from Geneva which are now getting a EUROWINGS standard of food & beverage ..well ,it s a menu card available for purchase for Eco pax and complimentary for Biz class ..just a bunch of sandwiches to choose from which I tried on Geneve/Prague but declined on a Geneve /Barcelona …
    I am not sure what the outcome of the survey that LX conducted is but I am hopeful things will get back to normal ( the usual SWISS uniqueness that nobody can match ) .
    Just to confirm that a few months earlier I had flown Rome/Zurich/Copenhagen/Zurich/Paris in Biz class and was delighted at the luxurious cold meals prepared in Zurich by SWISS ,not by others .

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    Swissdiver
    Participant

    KSHaggag, I had on each flight three kind of mezze, as described in my initial post. Were your snacks different?


    KSHaggag
    Participant

    Hi Swissdiver ,

    Indeed different ! yep ,something far from this ..just small ( tastelessssssssssss ) canapes that did not taste or look swiss by any means .I worked for Swissair for 12 years from 1989 to 2000 and have been flying Swissair then Swiss from 1989 till today and I can assure you what I had in February of this year was a disgrace .The swiss style is unique and you can savor it with your eyes before tasting .Neither the presentation nor the taste had anything to do with swissness;it was rather Starbucks style grab -n-go .
    I am not questioning the quantity but rather the taste ,the presentation and the look .
    Moreover ,LX cold meals were mostly composed of high-end ingredients e.g. salmon,shrimps ,beef ,duck or viande de Grison and not just a cold cut of pork or salami almost always which is a lower quality option and also not taking into consideration the no-pork eaters ..It is NOT a swiss vertue not to pay respect to cultures of the world ..


    Swissdiver
    Participant

    Well, KSHaggag, Swiss is far from what was Swissair I am afraid. But we have to also admit time changed… No orange thing at that time (and therefore far more expensive tickets!). That said, Lufty offers not much on short flights. So I guess they will pull down the service in the subsidiaries… Sad.


    KSHaggag
    Participant

    I do realize that Swiss is not SWISSAIR ( The Grand Old Dame ) but still Swiss has been playing outstandingly since its inception in 2002 till last year on short flights .That newly introduced so -called concept is actually a suicide attempt by LH on its smaller partner .If I accept the new ( Leisure ) concept on the Geneva flights I will never accept that disgraceful drop on the Zurich flights .
    On this occasion ,I want to pay tribute to Alitalia for its catering concept especially in Business Class ;during the era of the Etihad control ,the Alitalia food on board dropped dramatically in quality and lost its great italian identity coz the caterer was switched and they had opted to an Australian caterer ( ask me why ) instead of the italian one .Alitalia s short haul european meals were delightfully italian ..You could notice the drop at the first sight upon seeing their orange juice served on board ..AZ serves a unique reddish orange juice ..Now that AZ took back control of itself ,the service and food are back to the great authenticity …BRAVO ,ALITALIA .


    Swissdiver
    Participant

    Fully agree, KSHaggag. My point is simply that LH tries to look not that bad by pressuring their subsidiaires with the result we know.

    Happy to read there is more than overcooked pasta followed by overcooked pasta at AZ! Thanks for the tip.


    KSHaggag
    Participant

    Hi Swissdiver ,

    Not in the context of this thread ,I do assure you that the Magnifica Class ( longhaul Business Class product of AZ on long haul flights ) offers some of the best standards in the sky in terms of comfort ,service and especially food .It serves the BEST food you can taste above the clouds in a Business Class cabin …It puts to shame many others worth their salt …


    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    I don’t know if I had the old or new catering, but ex GVA I was impressed. I took the cold cuts with cheese and it came in a box with a cutting board, embossed with Swiss and Globus (which I could and did keep), who I guess therefore supplied the food.

    On my return from Zurich the quality and appearance looked very good,it’s just I don’t eat shrimp or crab and there was no alternative. Not too worried as the lounge offering was excellent and i kept the water and piece of cheese for my train journey back to Lugano.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    KSHaggag
    Participant

    Hello Lugano Pirate ,

    It s refreshing to hear your comments ;when was that exactly ? It seems this is an adjustment LX adopted after ( I am sure ) the feedback on last winter s LH initiative /approach was disastrous .
    I will never stop flying LX within Europe as long as I am alive and will see next August how things are .
    That Globus box on a Geneva flight ( admittedly Geneva is more a leisure oriented business ) seems an innovation because last February it was a ( LOW COST CARRIER) approach with a menu card in the seatback reflecting some sandwiches and chips that were offered against payment in Y /cl and free for Business pax …a disgrace …I hope LH is not considering LX in Geneva a Eurowings /Brussels Airlines swiss version .
    Swiss WILL remain a high-end carrier whether in Zurich or in Geneva and whoever tries to jeopardize this regardless the reason or the motives will have to bear the heavy disastrous consequences incurred .
    I will definitely come back to this thread by late August after having flown with Swiss again in Business within Europe from/to both Zurich & Geneva .
    Viva Swiss !


    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    Hi KSHaggag, it was mid May this year. I’ll be flying Swiss again next week ex MXP then onto JNB. I’ll let you know how it was.

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