After an incredible journey to Oman, it was time for the final section again to america, in Scandinavian Airways’ A350-900 enterprise class from Copenhagen to Miami.
I used to be wanting ahead to this flight, as I hadn’t flown SAS’ A350 enterprise class earlier than. Moreover, I’ve solely ever flown SAS’ lengthy haul enterprise class as soon as (on the A330), and it wasn’t expertise. I used to be curious to see how the airline would do that time round.
I’ve gotta say, SAS actually impressed me — whereas there are just a few areas for enchancment, the crew was pleasant, the seats have been snug, the meals was good, and enterprise class passengers get free Wi-Fi. This would possibly simply rank in my prime 5 transatlantic enterprise class merchandise.
How I booked my SAS enterprise class ticket
I booked the return itinerary by Air Canada Aeroplan, and managed to ticket the next in enterprise class for 105,000 Aeroplan factors plus $55.25 in taxes and costs:
02/27 TK775 Muscat to Istanbul departing 1:20AM arriving 6:05AM
02/27 TK1781 Istanbul to Copenhagen departing 11:50AM arriving 1:10PM
03/01 SK953 Copenhagen to Miami departing 9:35AM arriving 2:05PM
Considered one of the superior issues about Aeroplan is that you could add a stopover to a one-way award for simply 5,000 factors, so I used to be ready so as to add a kind of right here, so I might spend a few days in Copenhagen.
SAS enterprise class boarding
After visits to each the SAS Lounge and Eventyr Lounge, it was time to go to the departure gate for our flight to Miami. Our flight was scheduled to depart at 9:35AM, and boarding was scheduled to start out at 8:50AM, 45 minutes earlier than departure.
The flight was departing from gate E129, which was a stunning distance from the Eventyr Lounge, though we have been already within the non-Schengen space. We walked actually far, and the terminal was additionally completely abandoned.
8:50AM got here and went, and there was no announcement about boarding. As a matter of truth, the crew solely confirmed up 5 minutes after that, at 8:55AM. A second later the gate brokers suggested that there was one flight attendant lacking, and so they have been engaged on discovering a substitute, however didn’t have a way of how lengthy that may take.
At 9:20AM the purser got here into the gate space and made an announcement. He defined the scenario in better element, and stated that one flight attendant had referred to as in sick final minute, and a substitute flight attendant needs to be arriving any minute.
He was extraordinarily skilled, and defined that the flight attendant that may be exhibiting up shortly helps us and never the rationale for the delay, so we shouldn’t blame her. Slightly he recommended we cheer when she arrives.
Certain sufficient at 9:30AM the flight attendant confirmed up, and it was clear that she was speeding to get there, as she was out of breath. She wasn’t simply casually strolling with an iced espresso in her hand. Kudos to the crew for the professionalism with which this was dealt with.
Boarding started roughly two minutes after that final flight attendant arrived, with enterprise class passengers being invited to board first.
SAS A350-900 enterprise class cabin & seats
Scandinavian Airways’ Airbus A350-900s have a complete of 40 enterprise class seats, in a 1-2-1 configuration. There’s a ahead cabin (between the primary and second set of doorways) with eight rows of seats, and a rear cabin (behind the second set of doorways) with two rows of seats.
SAS has Vantage XL seats in enterprise class, which you’ll discover on fairly just a few airways, together with Philippine Airways, Qantas, RwandAir, and extra.
In these configurations, seats are staggered in alternating rows to maximise effectivity. This permits the footwell for a specific seat to be to the aspect of the seat in entrance. Some individuals could favor to take a seat within the middle part if touring with somebody, although in actuality you continue to gained’t be that near the opposite particular person (there are not any “honeymoon” seats right here, as you’d discover in another configurations).
The variations between seats are extra noticeable within the window seats. In odd numbered rows, the window seats are nearer to the aisle, so that they don’t supply as a lot privateness, and it’s tougher to look out the window.
In even numbered rows, the window seats are nearer to the home windows, which might be my most well-liked seats, provided that they provide essentially the most privateness and the most effective views. I assigned myself seat 8A (row eight is the final row within the ahead enterprise class cabin).
Every seat has an 18.5″ seatback tv, plus a literature pocket and coat hook subsequent to it.
Alongside the opposite aspect of the seat is a “counter” the place you possibly can place issues throughout the flight. There’s additionally an uncovered storage compartment that has a hook for headphones, plus a studying gentle, the seat controls, leisure controller, headphone jack, and shops (USB and AC energy).
Along with the extra customizable seat management positions, there are just a few pre-set positions you possibly can management from a panel beneath the aspect desk.
The tray desk may very well be prolonged from the armrest on the precise aspect of the seat, and it may very well be folded over in half.
One subject with these staggered configurations may be that the footwell is typically on the small aspect, particularly when you’ve got huge ft. Fortuitously SAS’ Vantage XL seats have fairly huge footwells, so I didn’t discover house to be a problem when attempting to sleep.
Every seat additionally had the newest technology Airbus overhead consoles, together with a studying gentle and seatbelt signal. Sadly there have been no particular person air nozzles.
The 2 bathrooms for enterprise class passengers have been situated behind the cabin. They have been fairly no frills, and weren’t significantly huge, didn’t have home windows, and didn’t have any thrilling facilities.
SAS enterprise class facilities
Ready at every seat upon boarding was a pillow, blanket, and mattress sheet. I discovered the bedding to be fairly good — the pillow was fairly giant, the blanket was cozy with out being heat, and it was good to have a mattress pad (although maybe it was extra of a sheet, because it doesn’t supply a lot extra padding).
There was additionally an amenity package ready at every seat.
The contents have been restricted, and included a dental package, socks, eyeshades, earplugs, face moisturizer, and lip balm.
Then there have been headphones, which had a gentle noise canceling characteristic.
About 10 minutes after boarding, pre-departure drinks have been served, with the selection of champagne, orange juice, or water. I chosen the champagne, which was served in correct glassware.
SAS departure from Copenhagen
Boarding was full by 9:50AM, about quarter-hour after it began. It was an environment friendly boarding course of, thanks largely to the flight not being too full — enterprise class and premium financial system have been round 75% full, whereas financial system appeared to be round 50% full.
As soon as everybody was settled within the purser made his welcome aboard announcement, informing us of our flight time of 10 hours. At 10AM we started our pushback, at which level the security video was screened.
We began taxiing to the runway by 10:05AM — it was a fairly quiet day on the airport, with out a lot motion. There weren’t all that many attention-grabbing planes, maybe other than an Air China A330.
I didn’t simply look out the window, but additionally saved a watch on the superior tail digital camera that SAS’ A350s have. Gosh I might watch this all day. By 10:15AM we have been cleared for takeoff on runway 22R.
We had a easy takeoff roll and gradual climb out — what a beautiful wing and engine view I had from my seat!
SAS A350 leisure & Wi-Fi
As we climbed out I browsed the leisure choice. Whereas SAS’ leisure system is fairly responsive, the display has a irritating quantity of glare, and there don’t appear to be any methods to regulate the settings to enhance that. So when the cabin lights are turned on, anticipate to be coping with fairly a little bit of glare.
The leisure choice was okay, however under common. There have been a complete of 87 TV reveals and 57 motion pictures, which isn’t an enormous choice. Specifically, I want there have been multiple episode of every TV present, since it may be enjoyable to get right into a sequence generally.
As an avgeek I did respect the reveals on the leisure about SAS, together with how pre-flight inspections are carried out, methods to overcome worry of flying, and many others. Sadly every of those solely lasted a couple of minutes at most, so I exhausted that choice fairly rapidly.
For a lot of the flight I merely had the tail digital camera or the map characteristic on, which is ideal leisure, so far as I’m involved.
No matter shortcomings SAS has with the leisure system is greater than made up for with Wi-Fi. SAS presents enterprise class passengers complimentary Wi-Fi on one machine. Speeds have been even wonderful.
To entry the free Wi-Fi it’s important to present your first and final identify plus your reserving reference, so ensure you have that useful when boarding your flight.
If you happen to don’t have entry to free Wi-Fi (or wish to purchase entry for a second machine), the associated fee is an affordable 199DKK (~$17) for the whole flight with out knowledge caps.
There aren’t many airways providing free Wi-Fi with no knowledge caps throughout the Atlantic, so this can be a enormous aggressive benefit for SAS, for my part.
SAS A350 enterprise class mattress
I didn’t sleep on this 10 hour daytime flight, however I did check out the mattress mode for consolation. I discovered the mattress to be fairly snug — the seat padding was good, and I discovered the seat to be spacious, though I’m a aspect sleeper who likes to bend my knees.
One different attention-grabbing word about cabin ambiance. The crew by no means turned off the lights within the cabin throughout the flight, however quite the under temper lighting was as darkish because it acquired. I discover that the majority airways flip off lights on longer flights (even when daytime) so that folks sleep, although as somebody who wished to remain up, I type of appreciated this degree of lighting.
SAS enterprise class lunch
The meal service began rapidly after takeoff. Oddly there have been no menus in enterprise class, however quite an announcement was revamped the PA informing passengers of the meal selections. Service began with tablecloths being distributed.
After that carts have been rolled down the aisle with drinks. I ordered a glass of glowing wine in addition to an Italian white wine, which have been served with salted cashews. The flight attendant working my aisle had the chef uniform on. I discover SAS’ execution of the onboard chef idea to be a bit odd — it’s not like Turkish Airways, the place there’s a selected operate the chef appears to carry out.
Your complete meal, from starter to dessert, was served lined and on a single tray.
On the plus aspect, I discovered the meals high quality to be wonderful. The starter was described as smoked cod loin with pickled beets and seaweed chunks.
Then for the principle course there was the selection of steak with cranberry sauce and candy potatoes, or Faroe Island salmon with jersualem artichoke sauce, and natural pasta with mushroom sauce.
For dessert there was a darkish chocolate tart. After the meal a espresso trolley was rolled down the aisle, so I had a cup of espresso to accompany my dessert.
Whereas the shortage of menus and one tray presentation aren’t ultimate, the meals high quality as such was excellent. I loved the starter, predominant, and dessert, way more than the meals I’ve had on most different transatlantic flights.
Your complete meal service was additionally environment friendly, and inside 90 minutes of takeoff all meals have been totally cleared.
SAS enterprise class snack & pre-landing meal
There was a self-serve bar within the galley between the 2 enterprise class cabins. This had a number of forms of drinks, in addition to packaged snacks, starting from nuts, to goodies, to chips, to gummy bears. In fact different drinks have been out there instantly from the crew.
Roughly on the midway level of the flight, the crew distributed packaged sandwiches, with the selection of both cheese or ham. I had a cheese sandwich, and it was fairly tasty.
I had a few cups of espresso throughout the flight, which have been served in paper cups.
About 90 minutes earlier than touchdown the pre-arrival snack was served. This consisted of a hen sandwich on rye bread, and was fairly tasty. This was served with a aspect of fruit and a field of goodies.
Espresso & tea have been served after the meal, so I had a cup of espresso.
SAS enterprise class service
That is most likely what impressed me most in comparison with my final lengthy haul flight on SAS. Not like my final SAS enterprise class flight, the crew on this flight was pretty. The flight attendants have been pleasant, attentive, and appeared genuinely glad to be working. Then once more, possibly that was partly as a result of they have been flying from Northern Europe to Florida in winter, which I think about might need one thing to do with it. 😉
SAS strategy to Miami
At round 1:35PM native time the captain got here on the PA to advise us that we’d be touchdown in Miami in round 45 minutes. Roughly quarter-hour later we started our descent, and at that time the cabin was already ready for touchdown.
As standard, the views on strategy to Miami have been beautiful, provided that we have been touchdown into the west. We had nice views of Miami Seaside, the Venetian Islands, Brickell, and many others.
We touched down on runway 26L at 2:20PM.
You’ve gotta love the site visitors at Miami Airport, from an Icelandair Boeing 757 (working constitution flights to Cuba), to a Boliviana de Aviacion Boeing 767.
We ended up arriving at our gate at round 2:30PM, only a bit delayed. We have been handled to an attractive view of the SAS A350 whereas strolling towards immigration.
Primarily based on my earlier SAS lengthy haul expertise, I got here into this flight with low expectations. Fortuitously they have been exceeded considerably. The Vantage XL seats are among the many most snug transatlantic enterprise class seats provided by a European airline. Add within the tasty meals, pleasant service, free Wi-Fi, and common consolation of the A350, and this was a improbable expertise.
I’d say the principle room for enchancment is with the leisure choice and maybe the introduction of a menu and drink checklist, so individuals can extra simply determine what they’re ordering. However these are minor particulars within the grand scheme of issues, and I’d select SAS once more on a protracted haul flight in a heartbeat.
Thanks a lot for following together with this journey, and keep tuned for the subsequent journey report, launching shortly!
If you happen to’ve flown SAS’ A350 enterprise class, what was your expertise like?