which flight to Istanbul?

Jan 23rd, 2010, 04:26 PM
  #1  
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which flight to Istanbul?

I'm not a frequent flyer and I've rarely flown business or first class. Since our cruiseline offers a fairly reasonable business upgrade, we've decided to treat ourselves for my husband's 80th birthday. The options are either Delta (767-400) of Lufthansa (340-300 series).

I suspect that Lufthansa would have better service. They have lie-flat seats, Delta has recliner, and Delta's width is more narrow.

The big drawback with Lufthansa is the times. It has an almost 5 hour lay-over in Frankfurt and gets to Istanbul around 5:00P.M.
Delta flight seems much better. Hour and 45 min. layover in JFK and gets to Istanbul mid-morning-- plenty of time to work off jet-lag (which we both always have big-time) by seeing the sites, etc (rather than sitting in an airport lounge or walking round and round in the airport).

I'm wondering whether this really is just dealer's choice, or whether there might be a compelling reason to choose one or the other.

I much appreciate input from knowledgeable flyers, which we are not. Thanks!
poss is offline  
Jan 24th, 2010, 12:03 PM
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According to seat guru, Delta is upgrading most of its 767-400 planes to lie flat seats. I think five hours is a long time in Frankfurt airport, even in the Lufthansa business class lounge.

Those of us of a certain age have found that taxi service in Istanbul is inconsistent with our cardiac status. Be certain to book a car service from the airport if your cruise line has not arranged for transportation to your hotel. We have had very good service from www.istanbulairportservice.com.
Jeff801 is offline  
Jan 24th, 2010, 02:27 PM
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Just how big are you? As someone who is 6' and 200#, I think the width on the Delta seats is not an issue. Otherwise, the seats are comfortable enough. I hesitate to recommend the "lie-flat" vs the recliners, as everyone has a different preference. I like the lie-flat seats, but others complain of sliding down constantly. Where you come down on this question is important.

As for service, I think Delta has excellent service in Business Elite. The food is very good and the booze selection is good. Wine isn't the best, but I haven't found it to be very good on any airline in business class. Also, Delta has the best pillows and blankets I have seen in business class, and the amenity kits are decent and feature Korres products. I doubt you would get an improvement in the soft product (food, service, etc) by switching to Lufthansa, and might very well see a downgrade.
travelgourmet is online now  
Jan 25th, 2010, 08:54 AM
  #4  
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Thank you both for your replies.
I asked Delta rep if they thought seats might be fitted to lie-flat and they said no way of knowing. It's interesting what you report about sliding down. I'm unfamiliar with this kind of thing-- I don't "get" the picture. (i.e. how they're slide prone). I do kind of dread a very long layover in Frankfurt, but wonder about the under 2-hrs in JFK. It'll be thunderstorm time and there are often flight delays. I guess I will need to just choose one, but I was interested in hearing about the comparative comfort since I know so little about this sort of thing.
Thanks again for help.
poss is offline  
Jan 25th, 2010, 09:39 AM
  #5  
 
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There is a difference between lie-flat and flat-bed. Lie-flat seats, like those on Lufthansa and on some Delta planes are flat, but slope to the floor at an angle. Especially on the leather seats, you may find yourself sliding down the seat. The comfort of lie-flat seats is one of the most debated topics over at Flyertalk.

FWIW, Delta is upgrading their 767-400 planes to flat-beds, not lie-flat seats. flat-beds are truly flat and are much better for sleeping. The ones being installed on the Delta 767-400s are quite nice. I wouldn't, however, count on seeing them on this route.
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Jan 28th, 2010, 05:06 AM
  #6  
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Thanks for the replies. I looked on various websites at the pictures of those bed-type seats and we have a strong feeling that they'd be awful for us. I can understand how business people, or people traveling by themselves, would love the closed-off privacy. Not being able to see, touch, have dinner/drinks with my husband would negate any aspect of comfort for us. I'm a nervous flyer anyway, and I definitely would be a mess in my own little (coffin-like) cubicle. Good comfortable reclining seats, where we're genuinely in contact with each other, are what makes sense for us. The LH flight seems to have this more open kind of arrangement, so that's what we'll book, despite the times being much less good than the DL flights. I do dread the long Frankfurt layover, but the DL flight in June is likely to have bed-seats, where it'd be as if we were flying without our partner.
Thanks again for help.
poss is offline  
Jan 28th, 2010, 05:29 AM
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poss - The flat bed seats on the Delta 767s are as open as any other business class seat. If you are in the middle, you share a very large arm rest with the seat next to you and there is no divider between you when seated, even when in a relatively deep recline - so you will be able to have dinner and drinks and hold converstions without any sort of problem. When fully flat, you do end up walled in a bit, but the Lufthansa seats descend into a bit of a shell, as well.

I've flown with the wife in the Delta 767 flat beds and had no issues with them and think they are good for a couple traveling together. Just avoid the single seats along the windows. 1B and 1C are, IMO, the best seats for a couple, due to the larger foot cutouts, but they are only available to elites, I believe.

Perhaps you are confusing the Delta 767 seat with the Delta 777 seat, which is poor for couples traveling together?
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Jan 28th, 2010, 12:57 PM
  #8  
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?? I looked at a photo of the flat-bed seats on the DL website and on another website that shows the airline seats. I was definitely looking at the 764, not 777. Now I really am confused. The seat I looked at showed a definite partition, and when I spoke with a supervisor at Delta to confirm my impression, he said yes, very much a partition (and that business flyers love it). I'm so confused! (Our flight would have been DL #72, on June 25 from JFK.)
poss is offline  
Jan 28th, 2010, 01:23 PM
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Delta actually has 3 different types of business class seats. There are the totally flatbed seats on the long range B777 that are in a herringbone pattern;then there are the flatbed seats on the B-767 400's that are in a 1-2-1 seating with the partition(they are similar to what Qantas or Air NZ fly I believe?) and then the business seats on the regular 767 ER's(various configurations) and regular B777 that are seats that are comfortable for sleeping but don't go all the way totally flat.
Delta is currently changing all of its planes to the flatbed type seats that are on the 767-400's including all of the planes that they have inherited from Northwest in the merger.
dutyfree is offline  
Jan 28th, 2010, 01:52 PM
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Here is a very good picture that captures what it actually is like in the seats.

http://blog.delta.com/wp-content/upl...1_135_rrgb.jpg

The blonde lady and the guy in the sweater vest are in the middle seats. As you can see, there is nothing more than an armrest/console between them. Every business class seat will have an armrest/console between the seats. The Delta one is barely wider than on any other plane.

Here is a video that shows them in action:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N06mWF2yq6c

There are the totally flatbed seats on the long range B777 that are in a herringbone pattern;then there are the flatbed seats on the B-767 400's that are in a 1-2-1 seating with the partition(they are similar to what Qantas or Air NZ fly I believe?)

Actually, it is the Delta 777-200LRs that have a seat similar to what Air NZ and Air Canada use. They are also similar to what Virgin uses, though not as closely related as they are to NZ or AC. The only other airline that uses a seat like what Delta uses on the 767 is Swiss.

Delta is currently changing all of its planes to the flatbed type seats that are on the 767-400's including all of the planes that they have inherited from Northwest in the merger.

They have only announced these changes for the 767s, 747s, and 777s. They have not announced any updates to the Airbus A330s that they received from Northwest.
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