Airline Review: Air Berlin (long haul Economy)
Air Berlin (AB) offers several weekly long haul flights to the United States, the Caribbean and Abu Dhabi. After we already reviewed the Air Berlin Business Class on long haul flights, it is time to also have a glance at what Air Berlin offers in Economy Class! To sum it up in a few words: The experience was surprisingly good!
Air Berlin’s Business Class satisfied us to the utmost when we reviewed it a few months ago. Afterwards, we had the pleasure to try the premium class again and the experience was a pleasure.
However, we were also looking forward to trying the Economy Class on long haul flights as well as most people don’t want to pay huge sums to fly in Business Class.
- Airplane: Airbus A330-200
- Cabin Class: Economy
- Daytime: Noon
- Food: Lunch / Pre-Arrival Snack
- Seat Pitch: 30 Inch (76 Centimeter)
- Seat Width: 18 Inch (46 Centimeter)
Our experience on a transatlantic flight from Berlin to Chicago was a good one as well. Sure, the Economy Class was not close as good as Business Class, but the food was rich and not bad, the entertainment system is solid and the seats are absolutely okay as well!
Solid seating in the Air Berlin A330-200
Flying Air Berlin on long haul has the advantage that there is no possible aircraft roulette. The airline just has A330-200 jets that have the same configuration in Economy Class (two jets don’t have a Business Class).
This means the configuration is either 2-4-2 or 2-3-2 (only in the last rows). We opted for a seat in the 2-3-2 configuration to add some privacy to our experience. This kind of worked out as the rows are not parallel to each other in this part of the airplane.
The cloth seats themselves were spotlessly clean and are pretty comfortable when sitting down. However, the seat pitch is a little limited for long haul flights with just 30 Inch (76 Centimeter) and the seats can be a little uncomfortable after flying for some hours.
All in all, seating in the Air Berlin Economy Class is not bad, but not extremely enjoyable neither.
American food onboard Air Berlin
As we tried the Air Berlin Economy Class on a daytime flight to Chicago, we enjoyed lunch twice as it was served after departure and before arrival.
It was kind of a nice touch that Air Berlin serves American influenced food on flights to Chicago. The first dish came close to what we know as Mac and Cheese even though the noodles were Tortellini.
The side dishes were pretty American influenced as well as we even got cowl slaw, something I never got before in an airplane! The brownie as a desert was a nice treat as well. The taste of the cowl slaw and the brownie was surprisingly good.
The noodles were just average though. Before landing, we got chicken sticks with noodle salad as well as crackers with cheese and a piece of apple cake.
This time, the whole meal was just average, but better than many other meals I had when flying Economy Class on long haul flights.
Drinks were offered three times, but you may also ask for a drink in the galley if you want more.
Good entertainment on modern screens
I have to admit that we were pretty surprised to see that the entertainment system in Economy Class was pretty much on-pair with what is offered in the Air Berlin Business Class.
The screens are way smaller, but are very modern and easy to use. You may also bring your own movies or music to watch and listen in the IFE. The resolution was quite good as well and I also liked the fact that you were not depending on an adapter to use your own headphones.
The choice of movies and episodes is a little limited (it’s rarely any better in the Air Berlin Business Class), but there is enough if you are not flying transatlantic on a weekly basis. Other entertainment like newspapers or magazines were not offered.
However, there was at least the board magazine available.
Good overall experience with Air Berlin
After flying Business Class, you’ll always have problems feeling really comfortable in Economy Class. However, our flight with Air Berlin was quite a pleasure even though it was longer than ten hours. Even on daytime flights, pillows and blankets are available. These make seating a little more comfortable, especially after some hours. The seat recline is not the biggest one, but fair enough.
The food offered by Air Berlin was nothing to write home about, but nothing to lose any bad words about as well. What made me really enjoy the flight was the easy usable and good entertainment system. Overall, I’d recommend flying Air Berlin transatlantic or to Abu Dhabi if you got the chance to. The Economy Class is quite fine if you are not too demanding!
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