CSA-CZECH AIRLINES BUSINESS CLASS IN-FLIGHT TEST NEW YORK - PRAGUE:
After many long-haul flights aboard in Business Class with CSA-Czech Airlines, our comments needed to be updated (let's even say upgraded), due to the increasing quality of services: on board, just like on the ground. The New York - Prague route remains one of the the longuest operated by CSA (the average travel time between New York and Prague on a non-stop flight is 8 hours), since the airlines unfortunately stopped its operations to Bangkok and Singapore ten years ago. It seems very adequate to test the quality of the airline. The present inspection report was done on August 2009.
Our plane was a very safe and silent AIRBUS A310-300. CSA operates only two of them, out of a brand new fleet (actually one of the most modern in Europe). The aircraft was full in the Economy Class, and much busy in the Business Class section. With much pleasure, we enjoyed one more time the comfort of the "APPIA" seats. Fully equipped with leg rest, footrest, adjustable headrest ... and also with a very unique adjustable lumbar support, which makes the flight extremely relaxing for people suffering back ache. There is still not individual video sets, but hopefully the airline would install them sooner.
The menu is regularly updated, and the quality of the food remains very high : we had chilled Bohemian Sparkling Wine just before taking off. Afterwards we took one glass of Becherovka : a Czech aperitif made out of fresh aromatic herbs and roots. Renowned speciality from KARLSBAD (KARLOVY VARY): a SPA whose water is not the unique attraction... and therefore much frequented by Russian tourists ! Then, we selected Smoked Salmon Decorated with Asparagus, fresh and tasty, going well with a glass of Moravian White Wine. They also get a selection of Bordeaux; but in Rome do as the Romans do: we preferred to enjoy their good local wines. We had then three choices for the main course: which was better than last time, when we had only two, and when only meat was available. Czech like meat so much! So, there was an appetizing Roasted Lamb, served with rice, broccoli and carrots. We preferred fish: a freshly Grilled Fillet of Pike Perch Grenobloise, with smooth Duchesse Potatoes, cauliflower and green beans. This was excellent. Pike Perch is a very fine fish, well known by the gourmets; this was nevertheless the first time we found it available in a plane. Good idea, indeed! After a plate of assorted cheeses, most of them from Holland - CSA's chefs: don't you know that your country, not to mention France, gets excellent and much more original cheeses?! - our dessert was a Fresh Fruit Tartlet. Czech Airlines also serves ice cream: which sounds wonderful when travelling with kids: what we did by the way. Both of them, under ten years old, sat in "Travel Class" (elegant name referring to the Economy), and had been taken care of by very proficient stewardesses. Coffee was good: worth to mention, when most of the airlines serve insipid ersatz.
CSA is a small airline, and only small airlines treat passengers that well. They have to challengingly permanently improve to get a minimum fame: this is why we like to recommend them.
Then we could have a good rest, while the flight attendants remained permanently available in case we should need some juice or water during the night. This is when we wish to congratulate CSA for the excellence of its friendly staff: stewards and stewardess get a real sense of service, which is unique compared with most of other European airlines. Not to mention the "Eastern European" ones: CSA escaped from this category as soon as the Czech Republic dropped communism. In Business Class, the chief purser acts just like a maitre d'hotel. Ask him whatever: sure he will find how to please you. Breakfast was generous, with Poached Eggs Florentine on toast, Chicken Sausage, Potato Croquette, Grilled Steak which came well done in our plate, Assorted Cheeses, and freshly backed Apricot Danish.
We reached Prague-Ruzyne exactly on time: the pilots should have a Swiss watch. The airport has been completely refurbished and extended on 1997. This is one of the most comfortable and practical in Europe. The CSA service on ground, which tend to be good, just became even more efficient.
The OK/DL (DELTA AIR LINES) code sharing makes the schedule perfectly adapted to the business travellers, with one daily flight leaving New York - JFK Airport at 5.45 pm, and landing in Prague next day at 07.45 am, fresh and ready for business (or leisure, in one of Europe most beautiful cities). Way back, there is a daily departure from Prague at 12.30pm, arriving in New York - JFK at 3.45pm. This is a global information. For permanent updates, please see the OFFICIAL CSA TIMETABLE.
actually anything wrong with CSA ? Difficult to criticize the airline,
indeed. They even improved very much the time of transit to the European
cities; now, there is almost immediate connection to most of them. If you
don't use the STOPOVER to visit the wonderful city of Prague
, you will just get enough time to enjoy the very recently modernized airport.
It looks far better now, with clean, clear and huge waiting rooms. The
new Business Class Lounge (they actually call it ABC Lounge) is less intimate
than the old one, but can easily accommodate more peoples. And there is
still a selection of freshly imported magazines and newspapers available
free of charge. For a fee, which is actually cheap, some computers are
available: linked to the Internet, with 56 Kbps fast connections. Wines
and alcohol are at the kind disposal of the travellers, with some crackers
and peanuts. Staff is helpful and efficient.
AIRLINES NEW YORK:
1350 Avenue of the Americas (on 55th Str.),
Suite 601, New York 10019-4702
|FIRST CLASS AROUND THE WORLD|