Airline Review: TAP Portugal (regional Economy)
Flying TAP Portugal (TP) means getting up early for me. I flew with them twice, once in 2013 and once in 2014. Both times the flights were early in the morning, yet the experience was a good one. On the long flight on Christmas Eve 2014, the seating was so comfortable that most passengers fell asleep immediately. Due to that, only few guests enjoyed the little breakfast offered for free.
I was a little surprised that TAP Portugal is not departing from Berlin-Tegel because all other Star Alliance carriers found a home in Tegel. TAP instead decided to fly from Berlin Schönefeld, the second airport of the city. This one is a little old and a little run down, but it’s not worse than Tegel airport.
- Airplane: Airbus A319
- Cabin Class: Economy
- Daytime: Morning
- Food: Breakfast (Sandwich, Croissant, Actimel)
- Seat Pitch: 30 Inch (76 Centimeter)
- Seat Width: 18 Inch (46 Centimeter)
Anyway, the ground service was really helpful (my luggage was broken) and made it easy for me to board the plane without any complications. Sadly, the boarding process itself was horrible. No boarding groups, no organization. The boarding call happened 15 minutes before the first passenger entered the plane. Due to that, the process took a little longer than expected (the plane was fully booked).
Comfortable leather seats
Even though the boarding process was everything but comfortable, we entered the plane looking forward to catch some sleep.
Luckily, TAP Portugal got really comfy seats in the Airbus A319. They are pretty big and got a really nice padding. To be honest, these seats were the most comfortable ones we’ve ever had in a regional plane so far. Seat pitch and seat width were okay, but nothing to write home about.
Anyway, the cleaning of the airplane wasn’t done thoroughly. On the board magazine as well as on one of the seats there were leftovers of a chewing gum – not a really nice sight. Apart from that, the plane was well maintained.
Also, the security video is really special, even funny, and it makes you watch it – good movie, TAP Portugal!
Good, but small breakfast when flying TAP Portugal
Sabrina fell asleep even before the plane departed, so it was on me to try the breakfast. After working for 45 minutes, breakfast was served. The process was really smooth as most of the passengers were already sleeping.
The choice of drinks was nice and you were able to choose as many as you wish. The breakfast itself consisted of an “Actimel” drink, a little sandwich and a croissant with jam. As we already had breakfast before, I didn’t really care about the amount of food.
Anyway, I had the impression that the breakfast was a little too small. So, be sure to not board the airplane hungry! Meanwhile, the quality of the food was all right and everything (even the croissant) tasted good.
Perfect choice for mid-range flights
Our flight from Berlin to Lisbon took more than three hours, so it was one of the longer flights you can take in Europe. In my opinion, TAP Portugal was a great choice for that flight. The comfortable seats make it easy to fall asleep in the airplane (remember, the flight departed at 6 am).
If you are looking for culinary delights, you should buy a business class ticket as the breakfast in economy class was neither rich nor something special. All in all, I would recommend flying with TAP Portugal if you are going to Portugal due to the nice seating. Anyway, you should have a look at the prices as these are pretty upscale at times. Though, in winter there are great specials at time.
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