Lately, it seems like every airline is getting into trouble with their customers. The stories I’ve seen have had me scratching my head wondering if I’m hearing the whole story!
When we decided to take our trip to Jordan to visit Anson’s sister, Hannah, we started checking ticket prices. We eventually decided that we would make stops in Istanbul and Prague before heading to Amman. As we searched what felt like a million websites for tickets we noticed that Turkish Airlines seemed to be the airline that we would need to fly with. We decided to check the airline’s website and when we did, we saw that there was a slight increase in the price. We made the choice to book directly through the airline even though it would cost a little bit more (literally maybe $100, so very little!). Booking through third party sites can often save money, but if you have an emergency or even miss a flight, it is often such a big hassle to get the assistance that you need. (We have experienced a loss of tickets worth over $4000 before so we know how it can happen!)
We booked our tickets from Toronto to Istanbul; Istanbul to Prague; Prague to Amman with a layover in Istanbul again; and then our final journey from Amman to Toronto which included another layover in Istanbul. Six flights in two weeks! It was tiring just to think about!
On April 8, Anson’s dad dropped us off at the airport and we headed to the Turkish Airlines counter to check in. As the woman at the counter was checking in our luggage, a manager walked over and looked at us and then said, “We are going to upgrade them right now!” WE HAD BEEN UPGRADED TO BUSINESS CLASS from Toronto to Istanbul!!!
I am sure I looked like a crazy person because I couldn’t stop smiling. Our tickets for business class were printed and as a further bonus we were given access to the airport lounge.
We chilled in the Maple Leaf lounge for awhile and then headed for the gate to board the plane. I tried to pretend I was supposed to be there, but as we went to the front of the plane and were greeted with welcome drinks of fresh juice, I definitely kept grinning.
My eyes were wide as I pointed out to Anson that I couldn’t even reach the little bench in front of my seat because there was so much room. When the chef (in an actual chef’s hat) came by to pass out the menus for our flight, I almost lost it. Just look at some of the food we had! (Click on the pictures to see them in larger form!)
I won’t bore you with every detail of our flights, but for 5 of our 6 flights we were privileged to fly in business class. We were able to fully recline and sleep for 5 solid hours on our long haul flights; we ate better than most people do in restaurants; and we were able to enjoy our flights as much as one possibly can!
During our layovers in Istanbul we got to experience the world’s nicest airport lounge. (I didn’t make that up–it is actually considered the best in the world!) One of our layovers was six hours and we were allowed to use their suites to freshen up, nap and even shower. In the two-story lounge they have a movie theatre complete with popcorn, a library with a pool table, a golf simulator, video games, and endless food and drinks. You can even book a massage while you’re there!
I have to say though, the most important thing I learned about Turkish Airlines I learned when we DID NOT fly business class. There was a man in the row ahead of us who had a constant stream of complaints. He was dealt with kindly and patiently each and every time. When you sit in business class, you expect to be treated well; but with Turkish Airlines I saw every passenger treated with equal care and compassion regardless of the price of their ticket.
Sure, we generally remember how nice places are but more importantly, we always remember HOW we were treated! A special thank you to Turkish Airlines for making our trip one to remember in every way! We wouldn’t hesitate to fly Turkish again!