KLM Euro business class to Amsterdam & Gothenburg

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Finding Level 1 Delta business class awards to Europe (Sweden) – Part 1
Virgin Atlantic Upper Class outbound via Manchester – Part 2
The Escape Lounge Manchester T3 – Part 3
KLM Euro business class to Amsterdam & Gothenburg – Part 4
The smallest lounge EVER – the Ford business class lounge in Gothenburg GOT- Part 5
The Club Carlson Park Inn by Radisson Stockholm – Part 6
Hertz Presidents Circle GOLD club rental in Sweden – Part 7
KLM Euro business class to Amsterdam & Manchester – Part 8
The KLM Crown Lounge Amsterdam #25 – Part 9
ASPIRE lounge #26 Amsterdam AMS Priority Pass lounge review – Part 10
SPG Sheraton Amsterdam Airport Hotel Schiphol suite review- Part 11
The Escape Lounge Manchester T2 for Virgin Atlantic Upper Class guests review- Part 12
Virgin Atlantic Upper Class Manchester to Atlanta – Part 13
Final thoughts, costs and Virgin vs. DeltaONE to Europe – Part 14

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (2)

In yesterday’s post I talked about one of the absolute last possible ways to get value for your SkyMiles and that is flying on partners. When it comes to one of them, KLM, there is so much that impresses me. The service is, most times, either very good or perfect and that goes for mainline and regional partners alike. The aircrafts are clean and I can not tell you last time I had a busted seat or air vent etc. They do a great job maintaining the aircraft inside and out.

I guess one of my biggest issues with domestic business class with KLM is that the seats are nothing special compared to coach (they are coach seats just with a seat often blocked off for extra “personal space). This really is a MUST have because ALL of the narrow body KLM domestic seat width is a meager 17″ wide and that, dear reader, is less than the 17.3″ width on a Delta CRJ200. Yikes!

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (1)

Having said that, my first flight from Manchester was on a KLM mainline 737 and if you can, do grab row one, that is, the front bulkhead row. Just look at how much legroom you have and you have, as already noted, a blocked off seat between you and your seat mate.

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (3)

Leaving the seat situation behind let me say again how just blown away (compared to Delta) I am with KLM service and what they offer even on a short flight. You get no PFB, that is preflight beverage, service like Delta offers but once in the air you can get your own personal mimosa if you would like and I do like that very much after a long redeye!

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (4)

And since this was a lunch time flight, even though only about 1-ish hour long, we got a lunch box with cheese or meat sandwich (they started back to front and only had cheese left for me). Now I tend to like this cheese sandwich very much and will when visiting the lounge snag (if they have them) a few slices of lunch meat to add to these sandwiches to make them better (a reason to always travel with extra 1Q bags btw).

Despite a rather full coach cabin behind us service on this very short flight was just about perfect and attentive. Most impressed.

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (5)

We had some time connecting in Amsterdam so we started with a visit to an XpressSpa. That is always nice after that much flight time and then a brief visit to the KLM lounge (and navigating the AMS construction zone mess). Our next flight was on a KLM regional partner on an E190 that was to take us the rest of the way up to Gothenburg.

lots of KLM reginal jets parked at AMS airport Delta Points blog

They have a bunch of these and often times you can find yourself not gate side but parked out on the tarmac and bussed back and forth to your jet. Not a big deal for most but for some it can be, as you will see in tomorrow’s guest post.

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (8)

The E190s are setup 2×2 and most times there is no “personal space” blocked seat (but there should be and it is needed). But once again, just look at all the amazing leg room in row 1 on this jet. Very nice.

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (9)

Once again, service on this short flight was very nice. Actually, beyond very nice and I have to say most times it seems like the KLM regional crews try to outshine their mainline counterparts. I just love this and it lends to a cohesive KLM brand when the regionals are as good or even better than mainline service.

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (7)

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (6)

This time it was dinner “time” for our less than 2 hour flight up to Gothenburg from Amsterdam. The choice was a dinner salad. If I am going to be nit-picky this is the only #fail currently from KLM and it is more a matter of timing. To me, and I think most travelers, a salad for lunch is fine but a salad for dinner is not dinner. How about you switch the choices around KLM, that is, move what you have for lunch to dinner and for dinner up to lunch? Just a thought.

KLM Euro business class from Manchester to Amsterdam then to Gothenburg Delta Points blog (10)

Most say domestic European business class is just not worth it on, not just KLM, but most European airlines. I agree and disagree. If you can get it using SkyMiles I would do so and it does make these few hour hops that much better. I would not pay for this upgraded service and maybe additional “personal space”. Also keep in mind as a Skyteam elite there are NO complimentary upgrades for us (don’t even bother to ask I have never been successful getting one). The only way you will maybe get one free is if coach is oversold then they will move you up as an elite flyer.

Next up the smallest lounge I have EVER seen and my question of the day to you is have you flown KLM European business class? Do you agree with my review?  Would you like to see Delta offer this kind of meal service on shorter domestic flights at home? – René

 

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18 comments

  1. I flew this exact route, that is MAN-AMS also on a KLM 737 in 1-D, in early June. On my flight, there was only one other passenger in the forward cabin, so I had an entire row to myself. I actually sat in 1-D but the flight attendant used 2-D for my meal as I was working on my laptop.

    I concur that the KLM flight attendants are friendlier and more professional than Delta. Nothing irks me more than being addressed as “hun” by a 50-something Delta flight attendant when I’m spending $5,000 on a business-class ticket. It’s not Big Boy for the Sunday morning breakfast buffet yet that’s the sort of service you often get. I was actually told once that Americans (especially Midwesterners) prefer this casualness than the rigid, “sir” or “ma’am” that you’ll get from European or Asian airlines, but I digress. Back to KLM.

    I was disappointed with the catering. I’d take Air Berlin over KLM, as Air Berlin allows me to pre-select my meal. That’s huge, if you ask me.

    You’re right that the planes seem generally well maintained, though KLM is known to have very old planes in its fleet. You won’t get wireless internet, which is weird in this day and age. I also agree with you that KLM could treat partner Delta’s top-level elites much better. I don’t even think KLM upgrades its top-level elites, as I’ve seen them fly forward cabin totally empty when there are a half-dozen passengers with bag tags indicating top-level KLM/Air France elite status sitting in economy-class seats.

    Interestingly, I flew SAS back to Manchester, also in business-class (technically, premium economy but it’s business-class) from Norway. While in Norway, I took three SAS mainline flights, all on 737s. All were dumpy, old planes. Think ancient Delta 757s but in even worse condition. However, the SAS staff are very, very friendly. Catering was slightly better on SAS and the service was better than KLM — I never had an empty glass.

  2. One other thing. I hate the KLM bus-to-plane thing at AMS. Why? Because priority boarding isn’t enforced, especially once on the bus and offloading into the plane.

  3. Flew them early May 2014 Venice to AMS. Very pleased with business class seat and service. Let me say I am 5’4″ and spouse under 6′. Meal similar to your lunch. We left thinking that if we hadn’t burned the last of our SkyMiles on that particular trip we would easily choose to fly them again.

  4. Ive flown KLM Business Class several times from AMS-LAX and AMS-ALA (Almaty) (R/T) and enjoy the service. On the latter flight the service is TOO GOOD. On the seven-hour flight the FAs are always bringing something to eat, drink or ask if there is anything I need. Nearly impossible to sleep after SAN-ATL-AMS flight. The “House Bonus” is nice touch.

  5. KLM service is very good. Their business class product leaves much to be desired. I’ve flown SU Aeroflot this year between SVO and AMS, SOF and DXB in 737s and A320/319s. These flights were 3 – 5 hours. Each flight had a business class section with new 2 -2 seating similar to the delta 737-800. On each of the flights there was a meal service that was comparable to delta one transcon 767. The kicker is that the service on SU actually surpasses KLM easily.

    The meal KLM provides in business is only slightly better than what I have had on PG Bangkok Airways economy on a one hour flight. The FAs pass out hand sanitizers before takeoff, and no alcohol is offered on the short flights.

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