Departure time in Istanbul (IST): 1:50
Arrival time in Manila (MNL): 18:45
Duration: 11h 55m
Date of flight: May 10, 2019
*This is a revenue ticket (used Elite Plus upgrade voucher) Business Class flight #191
Video Review from YouTube 📺
the Business Lounge ...
Miles&Smiles Lounge which were both impressive lounges 👍
Boarding, Gate F3
Personal screen. On the ottoman were the slippers and the blanket.
Around 1:25am, one of the inflight chefs came addressing my by name to offer the menu card and drinks list. He took my food order afterwards and I opted for the seafood option both for the appetizer and main course.
Five minutes later, Denon headphones were distributed.
Around 1:32am, one of the flight attendants came to offer some pre-departure drinks.
Moments later, a male flight attendant came to present himself to us as the one who would be taking care of our side of the cabin. He also offered some newspapers although we declined.
Inflight Safety Video
We had our pushback at 1:56am. About 15 minutes later, the captain came on the PA to welcome us onboard and to give us some flight information including our flight time of 11 hours and 45 minutes, and the temperature in Manila which is 25 degrees.
We had a smooth take off at 2:19am.
Around 2:50am, the flight attendants came to take my drinks order, addressing me by my name. I settled for a glass of apple juice.
I was able to sleep for a few hours which was good.
Around 4:35pm Manila time, the crew started offering hot towels for the breakfast service.
The cabin has a total of 3 lavatories, one on each side between the main and smaller cabins, and one near the cockpit.
Landing in Manila Airport Terminal 3
Around 6:35pm, the captain came on the PA to give us some updates and that we would be landing at 7:10pm due to heavy traffic. Turkish Airlines was using Terminal 1 before and it has only been months since they transferred to Terminal 3 which is a much better terminal in my opinion, as they have the Cathay Pacific Lounge here as well as the Singapore Airlines Lounge 😉
We landed in Manila around 7:12pm and reached our gate 13 minutes later.
Writing this review days after Turkish Airlines have been given the Skytrax rating of 3 stars which is down from 4-stars is interesting. I thought that the new airport and the new lounge are definitely impressive and a big improvement to the old ones. However, Turkish Airlines´ soft product is still the same, and in some instances have been worse. Just like on my most flights in Turkish Airlines business class, the crew were friendly. But that´s it. I guess they really have to make an effort to make sure that they deserve to keep the 4-star rating and move to 5-star rating like Lufthansa, like be more proactive in asking how was the food or can I offer you some more bread. I read about the new bedding that Turkish Airlines have introduced but on this flight, only the pillow was part of the new set. We got the same blue mattress pads and blanket which they were giving before. Two things I love about Qatar Airways business class is that the crew always make sure the lavatory is clean after every use and that they have curtains between the galley and the cabin closed so as not to make much noise. On this flight, one of the lavatories I used was really dirty. The curtain between the galley and the smaller cabin where we sat was not closed which was only worsened by the noise from the crew and their activities. I have flown a lot in Turkish Airlines business class and I appreciate the improvements they have made like the DENON headphones, candle light dining and amenities in the lavatory. Of course, DO&CO catering makes sure that they offer one of the best dining experiences in the sky although my last flights in British Airways business class had a better presentation 😉
Turkish Airlines has a lot of potential especially now that they have a new airport and new lounges so I really hope they can continue what they have been doing good and try to improve the things which need improvement. If they do that, there is no doubt they will be among the best airlines in the world, with or without the Skytrax approval 😉