Posted in Aviation, Trip Report

#1763 – Flying Business Class with LATAM Chile

ENGLISH

My LATAM Chile’s fifth-freedom Madrid – Frankfurt flight which I took this weekend was in business class. And this post is a trip report of this sector. So without further ado, let the trip report begin🙂 .

***

LA 704 (Madrid – Frankfurt)

LATAM
Flight: LATAM Chile LA 704
Equipment: Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner reg CC-BBH
ATD: 15:26 CET (Runway 36R of MAD)
ATA: 17:31 CET (Runway 25L of FRA)

Check-In and Choosing My Seat

I checked-in online the day before upon which my request to sit in seat 1A was confirmed. Flight LA 704 would be operated with a Boeing 787 (either -8 or -9) which is equipped with 30 business class seats by LATAM Chile. But of all the 30 seats, I really wanted to sit in seat 1A especially after I saw the opportunity to request this seat. Why? Well, because of Chandler from Friends:

Ahahahah😆 . And as far as I know, seat 1A in a plane is the most prestigious seat of all, somehow.

Anyway, obviously at Madrid-Barajas Airport I did not have to check-in again. And because I had no checked-in luggage, I could just go straight to the security check and to the gate. Well, I did not go straight to the gate of course as I arrived at the airport some 5 hours before the scheduled departure time. Obviously I waited for my flight at Iberia’s Executive Lounge. More on that on a next post😉 .

Pre-Departure

Fast forward some 5 hours later, I arrived at the gate after the boarding announcement was already made. Consequently, a really long boarding line had been formed just outside of the gate, as visible at the right side of this picture:

Back at Madrid-Barajas Airport
A long boarding line

But then of course as a business class passenger I could skip the line, hahaha😆 .

The air bridge led me to door L2 at which I was greeted by a flight attendant (FA). While she directed all the people in front of me to the right side (those were OneWorld Premium passengers flying in economy), she directed me to turn left to the business class cabin, haha😆 .

Boarding time!
Boarding time!

The “problem” with boarding first was that now I had to wait for all those economy passengers to board the plane. So during this time, the very friendly FA approached me and asked what I wanted for drink. She told me she had pisco sour (a South American cocktail) or champagne. Damn! It was such a difficult choice to make, even more difficult than choosing one of the two job offers I got this May, lol😆 . In the end I settled with the pisco sour. But probably seeing that I had a bit of difficulty in making the decision, the FA decided to bring me both (along with some mixed nuts)! Yeay!! Te Amo!! Hahaha😆

A glass of pisco sour, champagne, and some mixed nuts
A glass of pisco sour, champagne, and some mixed nuts

The pisco sour was fantastic, btw!

The Seat 

Being a fifth-freedom flight on a tag-on of an intercontinental flight from South America to Europe, one aspect of this business class which easily beat all other business class service offered by European airlines on this intra-European route was the seat (see, e.g. this HOP!’s business class service from CDG to BIO).

You know I love window seats in a plane. And here is how seat 1A on board CC-BBH looked like:

Three windows for myself!! Yeay!!
Three windows for myself!! Yeay!!

Yes, I got three windows for myself!! Hahaha😆

Obviously each seat is equipped with personal AVOD (Audio-Video On Demand) but more on that later.

The seat also has a foot rest which angle you can adjust so you can position it to sit comfortably. But the seat’s functionality goes much beyond that. It can be adjusted to full horizontal flat-bed mode!! I do think this is very useful if you want to have decent sleep especially on longer flights.

Seat 1A in full flat-bed mode
Seat 1A in full flat-bed mode

I did not sleep during this not very long flight to Frankfurt. However, at 181 cm I pretty much already used all of the seat’s length in full flat-bed mode. So someone taller than me might have a problem with this?

Pillow and nice thick duvet blanket were available as well (the friendly FA offered me both). I just asked for the pillow as I did not plan to sleep. However, one other passenger used the duvet and it looked very comfortable. I think it would be very nice to have on a long overnight flight😉 .

My new favorite pose in a plane :O
My new favorite pose in a plane :O

The Cabin

The cabin of a Dreamliner, as always, looked very cool and futuristic especially with the cool LED Boeing Sky Interior mood-lighting.

The business class cabin
The business class cabin

The business class cabin was arranged in a 2-2-2 seat configuration so in total there were five rows of business class seats. These five rows were divided into two sections of three and two by door two.

The lavatory was small but very nice and clean. The amenity was very basic even though I didn’t know if this was deliberate considering this flight was just a short hop between Madrid and Frankfurt.

A Boeing 787 window in non-transparent mode
A Boeing 787 window in non-transparent mode

Oh, and obviously the ultra-cool Dreamliner’s windows which could change in transparency by adjusting the level with the buttons below. As I got three windows only for myself, it turned out I did not need to press all three buttons. Adjusting the transparency of one of them would automatically adjust the transparency of the other two as well. Practical!🙂

The IFE

Of course the AVOD was controlled by a remote control. I mean, just consider the 74 inch (approx 187 cm) seat pitch! Hahaha😆 .

AVOD and the remote control
AVOD and the remote control

The content was adequate for a short-haul flight with quite a rich selection of songs (an important aspect to me). However, the movies and TV-shows selection were not as rich. So content-wise, it was still quite far from the standard set by Emirates’ ICE. But I wouldn’t imagine this would be a big problem in a short fifth-freedom flight like this.

Accompanying the AVOD was the very nice LAN-branded noise-cancelling headphone. It was very comfortable to use throughout the flight.

LATAM’s in-flight magazine was available along with a selection of newspaper. One rather unpleasant aspect of this (imo) was that they only provided Spanish or German newspapers; no English ones. I know this was a flight in between Chile, Spain, and Germany. But still…

The Snack Service

About 30 minutes into the flight, hot towels were distributed and followed by the snack service. There was no option of snacks; but the snack looked like this:

The complimentary snack service in business class
The complimentary snack service in business class

A selection of bread was offered as well. For the drink, the sommelier recommended a red Chilean wine which, in his/her opinion, should go along well with this snack dish. The FA poured a little bit of the wine to my glass for me to taste it. It was good so I followed the recommendation and, as usual, also ordered a glass of still water😛 .

The whole snack service was delicious! The salad was good and I also liked the ham. But I especially loved the dessert!! Hahaha😆

The presentation was nice as well for a snack service. The salt and pepper shakers added a nice touch to the dish as well🙂 .

Conclusion

In conclusion, I did enjoy my business class flight with LATAM Chile a lot. The airplane was awesome, the service was very nice, and the FAs were excellent.

IMO, this flight is a very appealing alternative for the Madrid – Frankfurt vv sector, especially in business class!🙂

A LATAM Chile's (still in LAN's livery) Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner reg CC-BBH
A LATAM Chile’s Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner reg CC-BBH which brought me from Madrid to Frankfurt in business class.

I am impressed🙂 .

BAHASA INDONESIA

Penerbangan kebebasan kelima LATAM Chile-ku di rute Madrid – Frankfurt yang kuambil akhir pekan ini adalah di kelas bisnis. Dan posting ini adalah trip report dari sektor ini. Jadi, langsung saja trip report-nya kita mulai ya🙂 .

***

LA 704 (Madrid – Frankfurt)

LATAM
Penerbangan: LATAM Chile LA 704
Pesawat: Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner reg CC-BBH
ATD: 15:26 CET (Runway 36R of MAD)
ATA: 17:31 CET (Runway 25L of FRA)

Check-In dan Memilih Kursiku

Aku check-in online sehari sebelumnya dan ketika itu, permintaanku untuk duduk di kursi 1A terkonfirmasi. Penerbangan LA 704 akan dioperasikan dengan sebuah Boeing 787 (tipe -8 atau -9) yang dilengkapi dengan 30 kursi kelas bisnis oleh LATAM Chile. Tetapi dari 30 kursi di dalam pesawatnya itu, aku ingin banget duduk di kursi 1A terutama setelah melihat kesempatan untuk memesan kursi ini. Mengapa? Gara-gara Chandler-nya Friends nih:

Ahahahah😆 . Lagipula, sepengetahuanku kursi 1A di sebuah pesawat itu memang adalah kursi yang paling bergengsi kan ya.

Anyway, jelas di bandara Madrid-Barajas aku tidak perlu check-in lagi. Dan karena aku tidak membawa bagasi yang ingin aku check-in-kan, aku bisa langsung menuju pemeriksaan sekuriti dan gerbang keberangkatannya. Namun, jelas lah aku nggak langsung menuju ke gerbang keberangkatan karena aku tiba di bandara sekitar 5 jam sebelum jadwal keberangkatan. Aku menunggu penerbanganku di executive lounge-nya Iberia. Lebih jauh laporannya akan kutulis di posting yang akan datang😉 .

Sebelum Keberangkatan

Fast forward sekitar 5 jam kemudian, aku tiba di gerbang keberangkatan ketika pengumuman naik pesawat sudah diumumkan. Sebagai akibatnya, sebuah antrian naik pesawat yang panjang sudah terbentuk di depan gerbangnya, seperti yang nampak di bagian kanan foto ini:

Back at Madrid-Barajas Airport
Sebuah antrian naik pesawat yang panjang

Tetapi jelas dong sebagai penumpang kelas bisnis aku mah nggak perlu ngantri ya, hahaha😆 .

Gabarata membawaku ke pintu L2 dimana aku disambut oleh seorang pramugari. Jika ia mengarahkan penumpang-penumpang di depanku ke arah kanan (mereka adalah penumpang OneWorld Premium yang terbang di kelas ekonomi), ia mengarahkanku ke sisi kiri ke kabin kelas bisnis, haha😆 .

Boarding time!
Saatnya boarding!

Oke, “masalah” dengan naik pesawat duluan adalah aku harus menunggu penumpang-penumpang ekonomi untuk boarding kan ya. Jadilah di waktu ini, pramugarinya yang ramah itu mendatangiku dan bertanya aku ingin minum apa. Ia berkata mereka menyediakan pisco sour (sebuah cocktail ala Amerika Selatan) atau champagne. Sial! Kok susah banget begini pilihannya, galau deh aku karena bagiku pilihan ini lebih sulit daripada memilih satu dari dua tawaran pekerjaan yang kudapatkan Mei ini, huahaha. Setelah kutimbang-timbang akhirnya aku memilih pisco sour. Tetapi mungkin karena melihat aku galau dalam membuat keputusannya, pramugarinya membawakanku dua-duanya loh (bersama dengan seporsi kecil kacang untuk kudapan)! Horeee!! Te Amo!! Hahaha😆

A glass of pisco sour, champagne, and some mixed nuts
Segelas pisco sour, champagne, dan kacang

Oh iya, pisco sour-nya beneran enak banget lho!

Kursi

Sebagai penerbangan kebebasan-kelima yang merupakan lanjutan dari penerbangan antar-benua dari Amerika Selatan ke Eropa, satu aspek dari kelas bisnis penerbangan ini yang dengan mudah mengalahkan semua layanan kelas bisnis maskapai-maskapai Eropa lain di rute intra-Eropa adalah kursinya (lihat, misalnya, layanan kelas bisnisnya HOP! dari CDG ke BIO).

Tahu kan, kursi favoritku di dalam pesawat adalah kursi jendela. Dan berikut ini kursi 1A di dalam CC-BBH:

Three windows for myself!! Yeay!!
Tiga jendela untukku!! Yeay!!

Iya dong, itu tiga jendela untukku sendiri!! Hahaha😆

Jelas kursi ini dilengkapi dengan fitur AVOD (Audio-Video On Demand) personal juga tetapi ini akan kubahas nanti.

Kursinya juga dilengkapi dengan foot rest yang mana sudut kemiringannya bisa kita sesuaikan sesuka hati sehingga kita bisa duduk dengan nyaman. Dan fungsionalitas kursi ini jauh lebih daripada itu saja lho. Kursinya bisa di-setting ke mode flat-bed horizontal penuh!! Iya, alias kursinya menjadi rata mendatar gitu. Fitur ini berguna banget terutama di penerbangan jarak jauh jika ingin tidur dengan cukup nyaman kan ya.

Seat 1A in full flat-bed mode
Kursi 1A di mode full flat-bed

Aku nggak tidur sih di penerbangan singkat ke Frankfurt ini. Namun ketika fitur flat-bed ini kucoba-coba, dengan tinggi badan 181 cm aku sudah menggunakan keseluruhan panjang dari kursi ini di mode flat-bed ini nih. Jadi seseorang yang lebih tinggi dariku mungkin akan mendapatkan sebuah masalah karena ini?

Bantal dan selimut duvet tebal juga tersedia (pramugari yang ramah itu menawariku keduanya). Aku akhirnya meminta bantalnya saja karena aku tidak berencana untuk tidur. Tetapi aku lihat ada penumpang lain yang memutuskan untuk tidur dan menggunakan selimut duvetnya. Penumpang itu nampak tidur dengan amat nyaman! Aku rasa selimut itu bakal enak banget deh di penerbangan jarak jauh di malam hari😉 .

My new favorite pose in a plane :O
Posisi favorit terbaruku di pesawat sekarang :O

Kabin

Kabin pesawat Dreamliner itu, seperti biasa, nampak keren dan futuristik banget terutama dengan mood-lighting LED Boeing Sky Interior-nya.

The business class cabin
Kabin kelas bisnis

Kabin kelas bisnis disusun dengan konfigurasi 2-2-2 sehingga totalnya ada lima baris kelas bisnis. Lima baris ini dibagi menjadi dua bagian, tiga dan dua baris, dengan pembagi pintu nomor dua.

Kamar kecilnya kecil tetapi keren dan bersih. Hanya saja amenity di dalam-nya standar banget sih walaupun aku tidak tahu apakah ini sengaja karena penerbangan ini hanyalah penerbangan singkat dari Madrid ke Frankfurt.

A Boeing 787 window in non-transparent mode
Sebuah jendelanya Boeing 787 dalam mode paling tak transparan

Oh, dan jelas dong ya jendelanya Dreamliner yang super keren banget yang bisa berganti transparansi itu melalui penyesuaian level transparansi dengan tombol di bawahnya. Karena aku mendapatkan tiga buah jendela untukku sendiri, ternyata aku tidak perlu memencet ketiga tombolnya. Dengan menyesuaikan transparansi di satu jendela, otomatis dua jendela lainnya juga mengikutinya. Praktis!🙂

IFE

Tentu saja AVOD-nya dikontrol melalui remote control. Ya iya lah ya dengan mempertimbangkan seat pitch sepanjang 74 inci (sekitar 187 cm)! Hahaha😆 .

AVOD and the remote control
AVOD dan remote control

Isinya cukup lah untuk penerbangan jarak pendek dengan pilihan musik yang cukup lengkap (sebuah aspek penting untukku). Namun, pilihan film dan acara TVnya cukup terbatas. Jadi secara isi, levelnya masih di bawah standar yang dibuat oleh Emirates melalui program ICE-nya. Tetapi aku rasa ini bukan lah masalah lah ya untuk penerbangan kebebasan kelima jarak pendek begini.

AVODnya ditemani dengan sebuah noise-cancelling headphone bermerk LAN yang oke banget. Headphone-nya nyaman dipakai di sepanjang penerbangan ini.

Majalahnya LATAM juga tersedia bersama dengan beberapa pilihan koran. Satu aspek yang (menurutku) cukup kurang menyenangkan adalah koran yang disediakan hanyalah koran berbahasa Spanyol dan Jerman; tidak ada yang berbahasa Inggris. Memang sih ini penerbangan dari Chili, Spanyol, dan Jerman, tapi tetap aja lah ya… .

Layanan Snack

Sekitar 30 menit setelah lepas landas, handuk hangat dibagikan yang diikuti dengan layanan snack. Tidak ada pilihan untuk layanan snack ini; tetapi snack-nya seperti ini kok:

The complimentary snack service in business class
Layanan snack komplimen di kelas bisnis

Beberapa pilihan roti juga diberikan. Untuk minuman, sommelier-nya merekomendasikan sebuah anggur merah Chili yang, menurutnya, cocok dengan sajian snack ini. Pramugaranya menuangkan sedikit anggurnya ke gelasku untuk kucicipi. Rasanya enak sehingga aku mengikuti rekomendasinya dan sekalian memesan, seperti biasa, segelas air putih😛 .

Secara keseluruhan, layanan snack-nya enak! Saladnya oke dan aku juga suka hamnya. Tetapi yang paling kusuka adalah pencuci-mulutnya!! Hahaha😆

Presentasinya juga cantik kan untuk sebuah layanan snack. Shakers garam dan mericanya juga menambahkan sentuhan yang chic ke sajiannya🙂 .

Kesimpulan

Kesimpulannya, aku sungguh amat menikmati penerbangan di kelas bisnis dengan LATAM Chile ini. Pesawatnya keren banget, layanannya oke, dan layanan para pramugara dan pramugarinya prima.

Menurutku, penerbangan ini adalah alternatif yang sangat amat menarik untuk sektor Madrid – Frankfurt pp, terutama di kelas bisnis!🙂

A LATAM Chile's (still in LAN's livery) Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner reg CC-BBH
Sebuah Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner milik LATAM Chile dengan registrasi CC-BBH yang membawaku dari Madrid ke Frankfurt di kelas bisnis.

Aku sungguh terkesan :) .

9 thoughts on “#1763 – Flying Business Class with LATAM Chile

    1. This is actually a very good question. Usually I already review/survey my upcoming flight(s), especially on airline(s) I have never tried before, so I come to the airport(s) with the appropriate expectation. For instance, when flying AirAsia I wouldn’t expect Garuda Indonesia level of service. Hence when I get tight seat or no meal/drink on board, it does not fail to impress me😛 . So only in few situations (those have happened before though) a flight would fail to impress me (read: to really disappoint me). This usually involves ridiculously bad/unprofessional service.

      However, if the question is have I ever flown an airline whose service is below the level I would expect from the airline? The answer is yes😛 . But it does not mean that I did not enjoy the flight. I just think the flight could have been better😛 .

  1. sama banget, posisi tempat duduk favorit saya kalau di pesawat (atau bis/mobil) pasti yang dekat jendela. soalnya enak banget pemandangannya~ 😆
    beruntung banget kak dapat kursi 1A.

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