Condor Airlines Review, Ben’s first post
Hello everyone and welcome to my first blog post …. Anywhere, ever. This is a bit out of my comfort zone and my amazing wife is already coaching me on what all of the rules are, many of which I’m sure I’ve already broken. Today is the first of many posts we’ll be sharing about our recent cruise trip around the Western portion of the Mediterranean Sea.
Today I’ll talk about our trip from Anchorage to Rome and a review of the Condor Airlines flight to Frankfurt and subsequent Lufthansa flight to Rome.
Condor Airlines Review – First Criteria: Convenience
After a bit of searching for flights, we determined that the Condor Airlines flight was the best one for us both from a time and cost consideration. As many of you may have already heard from us, Alaska, although not actually an island, is essentially an island and getting anywhere from here is not exactly quick.
The Condor Airlines flight is a non-stop trip from Anchorage to Frankfurt, Germany flying a route that takes you north over the North Pole instead of south and east through Seattle or Chicago.
This shortens the total trip by about 9 hours so that is an obvious plus.
Carmen has been on many more trips to Europe than I have and she felt like the reduction in trip time alone was worth enough to take the Condor Airlines flight again.
Condor Airlines Review – Second Criteria: The Price
The cost of the flight was about $1000 / person one-way which included the cost of our seat reservation, the cost of “premium” entertainment and the cost of a “premium” meal. So let’s talk about how Condor Airlines defines “premium”; on the entertainment side we got access to some movies.
Ok, I’m not sure how that’s premium and frankly don’t know what entertainment we would have had access to, if any, had we not paid extra for the upgrade.
The premium meal was the same meal that was served in the premium economy section. It was OK but not what I would have considered premium.
As a comparison, I liken the premium meal to the economy meal we had on the Qantas flight to Sydney we took earlier this year. A bit about other aspects of the flight, the plane was an older Boeing 767 with no frills and pretty plain interior. No power outlets in the seats which was kind of a drag.
At least the video players were built into the seats so we didn’t need to worry about them running out of power and luckily we had all of our devices charged up before we left. The flight attendants weren’t mean but they weren’t friendly either; kind of apathetic really. I’m not sure if that’s a culture thing, maybe something particular to this flight crew? Anyway, outside of that, this leg of our trip was largely uneventful.
Condor Airlines Review – Third Criteria: The Layover
We landed safely in Frankfurt and hung out at the airport for a bit waiting on our Lufthansa connection to Rome. We were hungry and so we ventured into a restaurant in search of some German food and German beer. It was called Hausmann’s and we found the place had what appeared to be a decent food menu and a beer menu that I thought to be pretty substantive.
Carmen enjoyed what she describes as THE BEST Schnitzel ….. EVER. In an airport restaurant even. Their version of German potato salad, which is probably more German than the recipe that I make, was equally delicious.
I enjoyed a dish called Worscht-Teller that had several different kinds of bratwurst, a veal sausage, sauerkraut and a kind of bacon mashed potatoes. It was a lot of food actually so I felt bad about not finishing it but I also didn’t want to gain five pounds on the first day of vacation. I thought it turned out to be a good representation of German food and pretty tasty too.
Now onto the beer. Since I am somewhat of a snob from living in Alaska where there are multiple craft breweries and access to the creations of many others outside of the state I was looking forward to some great German beers. I tried an IPA and lager style beer both brewed in Germany. They both came in bottles and I shared some pictures on our Instagram page. I’m an IPA fan and found the one I tried to be quite good. Then I thought I’d try the lager, which admittedly I was afraid might be a German equivalent of Budweiser, but was pleasantly surprised when it was not. Actually an all around surprising culinary experience for an airport restaurant.
Condor Airlines Review – Fourth Criteria: The Connection and Partner Airline
Time was up in Frankfurt and so we were on to the Lufthansa gate where our flight to Rome was waiting. This was my first time flying Lufthansa and while I didn’t know what to expect, the flight was about an hour and a half and so I figured the plane wouldn’t be very fancy. We found no frills and again no seat power.
What I won’t forget about this flight was the turbulence. I’m not a huge fan of flying and that’s mostly because of turbulence. Actually, it’s all because of turbulence.
It was pretty bad for about the first hour of the flight; so bad in fact, that the flight attendants couldn’t even deliver the drink service. I had a death grip on the arms of the chair the whole time trying not to think about the constant barrage of bumps but there were a bunch of people sleeping on the flight and I can’t fathom how they were able to do that.
Of course none of the turbulane is the airline’s fault..
And after all that, we made it to Rome where our vacation and adventure was just beginning.
Condor Airlines Review Score
To “land the plane” (pun intended) on the Condor AIrlines review, I would rate them a 3 out of a 5, basically average. We would fly them again because the savings in travel time that flying over the North Pole from Alaska to Europe provides is pretty significant. Now we know what to expect though and so do you.
Until then remember to travel more and travel often because Life is a Getaway.