While travelling from Paris to Bali, Indonesia last month, my husband and I took a few different airlines, and I thought it would be interesting to note and compare the different meals and services available on each of them. All of the meal photos are of the coach class, even though some of them look good enough to belong to the business class! 🙂 My husband and I love flying, even if it means cramped conditions that last several hours. Or let me put it this way, I can have fun flying if I have some good company! But I guess, that would be the case with everyone else too! 🙂
One of the airlines that we took was Air France, which took us all the way to Bangkok (about a 12 hour flight). I found the service impeccable! Inspite of being a full flight, and even a few jumpseats occupied by travelling staff, the crew had their heads above water, and provided service with a smile. Honestly, I personally prefer Air France over several other airlines because the staff are quite professional, mature and very understanding. Having traveled with them a few times, in coach and business, I can say I find their food almost always good (Breakfast is a tricky meal, and not many airlines can boast of a good breakfast menu). The meal pic above is a lunch meal. I had quinoa with some preparation of turkey. As you can see, the meal is quite loaded with the main meal, appetiser, dessert, any amount of bread roll that you prefer, red wine, porto and cheese. All in all, both service and meal quite satisfying! 🙂
This colourful airline is Thai Airways. We absolutely loved the bright colours, it just looked so lively after having leaving drab looking France in the chilly days of February. We took Thai Airways from Bangkok upto Denpasar, Indonesia.
Yves and I were quite impressed with the professionalism showed by the check-in staff! Since we had a very short time gap between disembarking Air France and taking Thai Airways, we almost had no time to go collect our luggages and check them into Thai Airways. We took a chance by asking Thai Airways check in staff if they could kindly pick up our luggage from our Air France flight and load it onto theirs. The Thai check in lady looked very efficient and told us no problem it would be done. We couldn’t believe that our problem was being solved so quick, given they were two separate airlines, and the time period being so short. I was almost preparing myself to say bye bye to our luggages and my vacation clothes in there! So imagine our relief when we did find our luggages in Denpasar! Whew! Our respect for Thai Airways went up several notches after this!
However, I cannot say much about the service nor the in-flight meal! Here’s a pic of our breakfast meals, which only consisted of chicken noodles, and liquidy rice with some sprinklings of fried chicken on it :
The crew were a mixed lot. There were some that looked shy and wanting to please, and some in a snappish mood! I asked a particularly pretty looking crew member if I could take her pic, since she looked so nice in her Thai airways silk uniform, and I was disappointed when she brushed me aside saying simply no. The Duty Free selection on Thai Airways, by the way, is extensive and diverse!
At the end of our vacations, we took Air Asia to fly to Jakarta. I was sleepy during this particular flight, and without inspiration to take photos! But I can say that the service was good and the meals, though we had to pay for it in flight, were just reaching above average.
Last and not the least, was Etihad Airways. We took this airline from Jakarta, capital of Indonesia to Abu Dhabi, capital of the United Arab Emirates. The flight was packed and luckily Yves and I had got seats next to the emergency exit, so we had plenty of leg space! Since the flight was outbound from Indonesia, the choices of meals available were Indonesia. Here’s some pics:
The above meal was my choice and it was ‘Indonesian spicy beef, local vegetables and steam rice’. For appetisers it’s ‘Soy Glass Noodles Salad with grilled chicken and crisp garden leaves’. ( I had kept the menu card and use it now as my bookmark!). There is also a ‘sweet bun with banana filling’ and the dessert is ‘marbled chocolate cake’.
Here’s a pic of Yves’ meal. He’d chosen ‘Spinach and Ricotta ravioli, with cherry and tomato sauce, and grated parmesan’.
Both of the meals were quite good! And in case anyone wondered, since this airline belongs to an Islam country, all of the meat served on Etihad Airways is Halal. Alcohol is served onboard, even during the periods of Ramadan (but the crew keep the bottles hidden in their carts so they are out of view).
By the time I was on this airline, I was chirpier and bright awake, and ready for a chat with the attendant whose jumpseat was right in front of us. I wish I could say I had a great time chatting and discussing her life as a crew and living in the UAE, but she seemed so sleepy and distant, I decided it would be the best for me to read my book and be entertained by the excellent in-flight entertainment movies available.