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Best/Worst Airlines to Fly

What has been everybody's experience in flying to Europe ...best/worst airlines that you have flown. I have heard the horror stories of Alitalia ....who else would you avoid ?

Posted by
9363 posts

The two best airlines I have flown to Europe are Virgin Atlantic and Aer Lingus. Thankfully, I haven't encountered any worsts. :)

Posted by
102 posts

Have flown on British Airways, U S Airways twice (2), and Air France. British Airways lost one piece of luggage going over and one coming back but both times they found it promptly and returned it without an interuption or hardship. I would give a best rating to all three of these airlines.

Posted by
2703 posts

Hi,
Having flown to Europe on Air Canada, Air France, Lufthansa and Swiss Air, I really didn't notice anything really different between them (we fly coach). I would not hesitate to fly any of them again.

Paul

Posted by
842 posts

Seat pitch in steerage is my gage of an airline. We love Lufthansa, and try to make it a point of attempting to get them. Great customer service too, when something comes up.(Lots of direct flights from US to Europe.)

United is always good. AA has been OK. SAS was a cattle a car special.......never again.

Posted by
2788 posts

Have flown SAS the last two years from Seattle to Copenhagen and enjoyed everything about them and I am 6'3" and sit in coach.

Posted by
1717 posts

As you may know, several of the airlines use the same kind of airplanes for flights across the Atlantic Ocean : Boeing 767, and Boeing 777. Being in those airplanes is pleasant. Those are the only kinds of airplanes in which I did not experience discomfort in my ears, upon landing, because of air pressure. If you are in Connecticut, I guess you want to fly from the New York JFK airport. DELTA airlines has flights from New York JFK to various destinations in Europe. I think DELTA airlines is excellent. And, DELTA airlines got out of bankruptcy in May of 2007. I was in a DELTA airplane at that time, flying across the Atlantic Ocean, and they celebrated by giving everyone in the airplane a free glass of champaigne. And, I do not think Alitalia airlines is horrible. I traveled in an Alitalia airlines Boeing 777 from New York JFK to Milan Malpensa. It was equally as good as flying with any other airline that goes from New York to Italy. They did not misplace my baggage.

Posted by
33 posts

Ron, you were lucky with Alitalia.

I have flown many times Europe/US and US/Europe, many different countries. I always try first LH, if not possible, Delta is really good too. I recently flown from NY with DL and it was really good, great customer service. BA are also good.
I personally don't like Air France, they are not that friendly and service is not that good... and of course, the last on my list is Alitalia.

Posted by
423 posts

Patrick, I've had good and bad experiences with each airline I've flown. The net of it is,if you want to travel, you choose the best flight options and realize that anything can happen. So, I pack light (and try to take carry-on only) and I also pack as much patience as I have in me.

Posted by
805 posts

The best airline is the one that gets you the best route to your destination for the price you are willing to pay. As veteran travelers will tell you, if you haven't had a bad experience with an airline, you haven't flown it long enough. Sooner or later, something minor will go wrong, you'll miss a connection, bags get lost, you'll get bumped, etc., and you just have to be ready to deal with that. For example, I love flying Alaska/Horizon out here in the Western US and I almost always get great service, but I have had ocassional minor problems such as those listed above.

Remember, flying is the worst part of your trip. The point is to get there and get back safely, nothing more, nothing less.

Posted by
769 posts

Lufthansa seems to be the best in my opinion- on the BOEING jets... Swiss air is not bad - but I found the Airbus coach seats tighter than the Lufthansa Boeing. The Lufthansa Boeing BIZ-class is THE BEST - if thats an option for you! While I agree with the other poster that the flight is not always the funnest part - it can make a difference to have a comfortable 12-hours going direct (from west coast).

Posted by
800 posts

The only airline we've used for our US-Europe flights has been Delta - living in Atlanta makes it the logical choice. Our last several trips we have flown their Business Elite class of service either by using our miles to upgrade a coach ticket or purchasing one of their discounted business class tickets. It is really nice to have your vacation start off with more personalized checkin as well as a lounge in which to wait. Delta has also lost our bags on 2 separate trips, had seats that would not recline all the way, & no audio/video for most of a return flight. They handled these inconveniences very professionally and I do not hesitate to fly with them. Fly often enough and something will happen no matter what airline you use. We did fly Alitalia this summer for an inter-Italy trip and they were fine - they were even responsible for delivering the bag that had been "lost" on our Delta flight to Milan.

Posted by
705 posts

I flew NY to London with American and thought they were great. My first flight with a USA airline and I really enjoyed the flight. Also flown with Swiss and they were fine, but the fleet is getting a bit old now. The plane mechanically I'm sure was 1st rate, but the cabin needed a bit of a refurb. Otherwise I fly Qantas or Cathay with my preference being Qantas, not just because they are our national airline, but because the fleet is much younger and the cabin has a bit of a brand new feel about it. It really can be the luck of the draw.

Posted by
808 posts

I'm really glad that Paul would not hesitate to fly with my team again. We are voted Canada's best airline for good reason.

I'm sorry to hear that David feels that "flying is the worst part of the trip. The point is to get there and get back safely, nothing more, nothing less".

Thanks, David for acknowledging our vital safety role. Yes, getting you there safely is our primary concern, absolutely! But it's not our only concern...

If I honestly believed that the quality service provided by myself (and the team under my direction) was "the worst part of the whole trip"...I probably wouldn't want to get out of bed in the morning!

Many of us do strive to make your Inflight experience comfortable, pleasant and most of all, memorable! That promotes Customer loyalty. You get to know some of your Passengers so well that you actually look forward to seeing them! And believe it or not, they actually look forward to seeing YOU! You can see it on their faces and that's a GREAT feeling!

Posted by
11798 posts

I've flown British Airways, Delta and American. British had the best food (including scones), otherwise generally a toss-up.

My bad experience was on American Chicago to Frankfurt. I got the back row and my seat didn't recline.

There is a web site that shows the best seats on planes. It's worth consulting and requesting better seats, anyone know the name of the site?

Posted by
805 posts

I meant worst in a relative sense. I so enjoy being in Europe that perhaps I should have said "Least Enjoyable Part" rather than worst.

Posted by
658 posts

With the creation of the huge airline partnerships like Star Alliance and One World a lot of the individuality has gone from flying, but it does ensure uniform standards of travel.

Also many European airlines tend to view North America as a prestige destination so high service levels are maintained ( there's a huge difference in service on Virgin's flights to JFK when compaired to their flights to Mumbai ).

All airlines have a few flights where things go spectacularly wrong and passengers get off saying * Never Again ! * but the only two I can think of that are consistently bad are Alitalia and Iberia. Alitalia is just a financial mess, they'd give better service if they could afford it, but they are flat broke and can't carry on under current circumstances for much longer. Iberia just has a consistantly bad attitude, they couldn't care less, all the good staff are drifting over to Spanair and regaining some pride.

Posted by
808 posts

Two things my College Professor told us about the wonderful world of Aviation...

"It's all about bums in seats...It's even better to have familliar bums in familliar seats...our seats..."

"An Airline is only as good as your last flight...so plan accordingly..."

(Excellent words of wisdom to close on during Crew pre-flight briefings...)

Posted by
486 posts

I vote Alitalia as the worst. Flew over on Delta and back on Alitalia a week ago and Delta could not compare to Alitalia when it came to customer-no-service. Coincidentally, my Egyptian cousin flew back from the same Florence family reunion to Alexandria and she independently commented on how bad her Alitatlia flight was.

Posted by
349 posts

when you luck out and have no one sitting next to you is a great flight . i am not huge but not small ether --- i have had some luck saying to the air people I know how to make 2 people very happy Me and the person that has to sit next to me with a smile.

Posted by
349 posts

when you luck out and have no one sitting next to you is a great flight . i am not huge but not small ether --- i have had some luck saying to the air people I know how to make 2 people very happy Me and the person that has to sit next to me with a smile.

Posted by
18055 posts

I've only flown back and forth to Germany recently. Lufthansa several times; NWA, Delta, and US Air once (RT) each. Lufthansa was by far the best. US Air was by far the worst. I was lucky and my flight arrived essentially on time, but that is not the norm for USAir. Their flights to Germany average several hours late. Also, they sold the earphones and charged for wine at dinner.

Posted by
18055 posts

BTW, I haven't flown them, and won't because of the following, which I consider fatally bad. Aer Lingus has a 6kg (13#) weight limit. That's 4-1/2# less than Lufthansa. I think I pack light, but 13#, no way, and I won't check bags so I avoid Aer Lingus. Would avoid Alitalia for the same (and many other) reason(s).