➔ Austrian Airlines A320, Business Class, LHR-VIE
➔ Austrian Airlines A320, Business Class, VIE-ATH
➔ Athens: In Pictures
➔ Intercontinental Athenaeum Athens Hotel
➔ Aegean A320neo, Business Class, ATH-MUC
➔ Lufthansa Cityline CR9, Business Class, MUC-VIE
➔ Austrian Airlines A320, Business Class, VIE-LHR
Being on the 15:45 Aegean flight between Athens and Munich, there was no great rush to leave my hotel. I checked out and 12:00, made the walk into town and hopped on a bus back to the airport.
Admittedly, I wasn’t too sure what the day would hold for me. I had received a notification the previous evening that my Lufthansa flight onwards from Munich back to London had been cancelled. More on that in the next part of this series though.
From what I could see, my Aegean flight out of Athens was still intact so that’s what I aimed for. I could deal with Lufthansa better once I reached Munich anyway.
As per usual, I had a mobile boarding pass so I could bypass the check in area and head straight for the fast track security and onwards to the lounge.
Aegean Lounge, Athens
Whilst the lounge itself was in the same location as previously, it appeared to have gone through a light refresh since I last visited back in 2016. Upon entering, I enquired about my itinerary and as far as they could see, everything was intact. So I’d at least be getting as far as Munich before having to rearrange things. This pleased me, as the main objective of this trip was to catch the new Aegean Airbus A320neo. Or at least a flight with Aegean themselves. I had flown with the airline a couple of times previously, however it had been over 4 years previously.
Anyway, on to the lounge.
Upon entry, there’s a small selection of reading material. Although it was mostly in Greek.
There was a very good buffet featuring hot and cold local dishes.
There were a selection of spirits on a aircraft drinks trolley.
There was a Nespresso machine, along with lighter snacks.
The lounge itself wasn’t too big. In fact, as far as flagship lounges at an airlines home base goes, I’m tempted to say this is probably one of the smaller ones out there. As it was, it was a little on the busy side. Had this visit been in more standard times, it would have likely been difficult to find a spare seat I suspect.
After around an hour or so in the lounge, I moved on to the gate to find SX-NEB waiting. This was one of three Airbus A320neo aircraft that were delivered to Aegean in quick succession at the end of January 2020.
Athens – Munich
Airbus A320 SX-NEB
The boarding procedures at Aegean are slightly different to what I’ve experienced previously. Priority boarding and those that need assistance was as usual. However, regular boarding started with those in window seats, followed by those in the middle and finally, the aisle seats going last.
There was a slight wait on the jet bridge before being allowed onboard. I seem to remember similar the last time I flew out of Athens.
Once more, I was able to score seat 1A at check in. The front row on this plane offered far more legroom than on Austrian’s A320 that I flew on to Greece. And British Airways A320 series for that matter.
Each seat had access to USB charging.
Once boarding was complete, a flying time of 2h20 was given. The service started right away, with boarding drinks handed out.
Followed by menus.
And finally, mints.
Push back came a few minutes ahead of schedule, although any advantage we gained was then lost due to the slightly longer startup process of the A320neo. We then made a long taxi over to the furthest runway, meaning that we eventually lifted off a good 20 minutes after leaving the gate.
The first order of service after departure was a round of hot towels.
This was followed a few moments later with a round of drinks.
Following on a few moments later was the main meal service. First up was the starter of a salad.
Along with a bread service.
Next up was the main course. I selected the chicken.
The final course was the dessert.
One disappointing aspect of the meal service was that there wasn’t any drinks offered. Even after asking for some water with the dessert, it didn’t turn up. I eventually resorted to going into the galley and asking.
Once the tray tables were cleared, tea and coffee was offered. Despite cappuccino being on the menu, I was told that this wasn’t available. Regular coffee it was then. This was served with a pack of biscuits.
As descent neared, chocolates were handed out. You certainly won’t go hungry on Aegean!
In flight entertainment was provided via a WiFi streaming service.
Although it appeared there wasn’t any way to use the WiFi to connect to the outside world. And if you hadn’t downloaded the Aegean app beforehand, you were out of luck.
As descent started, a second round of hot towels were handed out.
Another update from the flight deck came. It was the standard info – estimated arrival time, weather etc.
Touchdown into a sunny Munich came, and we made an unusually long roll out. I guess there wasn’t an awful lot behind us that required a swift departure from the runway.
Arrival on to stand came almost exactly on schedule.
A generally good flight with Aegean. You’re certainly fed well when you’re on board! Their new cabin was one of the more spacious in Europe – although it still retains the blocked middle seat set up. Despite this, it was still perfectly comfortable for the few hours I was sat in the seat.
The only minor issue was the slightly disappointing crew. I was a little off that drink refills weren’t pro-actively offered with the meal. But then still not getting one after asking was a definite lack of attention. I was also left wondering whether the whole cappuccino/coffee thing was really a case of it not being available or the crew just not wanting to make it separately. Although I guess that’s something I’ll never find out the answer to.