February 07, 2016 Romania Europe

Tarom Airlines: Flying Business Class to Bucharest

The first impression is: "I'm not impressed." There’s a clear lack of professionalism, attention to details and cleanliness.

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It all starts when you're boarding. You’ll find an old carpet giving way to the business class isle, which was very chaotic… It isn't up to Skyteam’s standards. It's followed by the lounge experience, a haunted space you don't want to spend much time in.

Now for the plane. Hostesses, no smiles and no welcoming, business or not all passengers are treated the same. An old plane, the Boeing 737, old seats, one set close to the other with minimal legroom and no leg rest and the chair comes without an electrical plug and there’s no screen. Ok, it's a two hours and a half flight, but I think there is a minimum.

Some seats have a protection for the headrest some others didn't as they were left as is after being used by prior customers; hence the plane was not cleaned. Some seats have bed covers others didn’t with and some of which were already opened by travelers coming from Bucharest. All of the above and we were still waiting for our turn on the runway. It's 03:22am; I really need to sleep but can't wait to check their breakfast suggestion.

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It is clear: This plane was not prepared after arriving from Bucharest.

Now for a more detailed look. Large leather sofas, two on each side fill the business area that welcome up to eight passengers.

The good: lights are completely dimmed and not lit even during food service. Each passenger who choses to eat or sleep should use their personal lamp. We’re given a hot towel to refresh, a paper tablecloth while food is served. 

No choice but one single meal and that is eggs. 

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Food:

  • A plastic tray offering eggs Florentine, a multi cereal bun, fruit slices, muesli, jam and butter. Eggs Florentine with spinach, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, yellow cheese and chicken sausage. That's a good plate. Tender and juicy omelets filled with moist spinach with melted cheese on the side. A premiere for me was to have the detailed list of ingredients used to prepare the food. Everything from flavoring to preservatives are clearly noted so you know what you're eating especially if you suffer from any food intolerance and allergies. 
  • Greek yogurt and muesli is bizarre, a bit too acidic and topped win dry muesli. I believe honey should have been served on the side.
  • Don't bother listening to the public speaker handled by one of the hostesses. She murmurs some words with a strong accent. English or Romanian, I couldn't understand a word.
  • Now the luggage: a thirty-minute wait because priority tagged bags arrived last. It's not only about plane staff but it seems all the company needs some urgent training.

Now for the way back:

  • One hostess smiled another didn't feel the need to. The same old plane, the blue leather seats, no pillows and no covers, entrance to the plane where business class is not respected with preferential cue... Anyway, I learned not to expect much. I believe Skyteam has more work to do here.
  • A hot towel and a complementary drinks menu. I had a beer, served in a cup without nuts or any accompanying snacks.

Dinner:

  • Green beans salad with tomatoes and lettuce.
  • Cheese plate with blue cheese and Babibel.
  • Turkey roulade with asparagus and gratin potatoes, sautéed zucchini, carrots and red peppers. It was not hot enough; the turkey is tender with heavy sauce and molten potatoes on the side as well as crunchy vegetables. Not bad for plane food, but I didn't feel like finishing it.

Dessert: Chocolate mousse and white chocolate mousse: Too creamy for me.

I ended up eating crackers.

Anyway, that's it, nothing fancy about this airline. Next time you travel, don't have high expectations.

Categories: Airlines Travel



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