Condor A330neo Business Class SEA-FRA
Condor has a new Business Class that I’ve been looking forward to experiencing. For a relatively small, leisure airline, I was impressed with the product. It shouldn’t be compared to Qatar or Cathay Pacific, but it absolutely holds its own against British, American, or most other US or European airlines.
Condor is a partner of Alaska Airlines and they have a direct Seattle to Frankfurt flight with the new Business Class product on their A330neo aircraft. Make sure you check the aircraft, as some days it is the older (inferior) planes without the new seats. Make sure the flight you pick has the A330neo. I recommend searching directly on condor.com as they make it very clear which flights have the new aircraft. Aircrafts do get swapped, so double check again a few weeks ahead of your flight.
I was able to book two trips out of my one way Alaska Airlines mileage award booking. For 55,000 miles + $56.50, I was able to book ANC-FAI-SEA in Alaska Airlines First Class (my return flight after my Norwegian cruise) and, a week later, my SEA-FRA flight in Condor Business Class. It is the same price I would have paid for just SEA-FRA so I was happy to get the First Class trip from Alaska to Seattle as a bonus that saved me about $350.
I arrived at SeaTac Airport about three hours ahead of my scheduled departure of 4:15pm. The Condor desk was open and there was no line for the Business Class check in.
I was pleasantly surprised that my TSA PreCheck was applied to my ticket; I find it hit or miss whether non-US airlines/travel gets TSA PreCheck.
Condor uses the Club at SEA in the S gates as their Business Class lounge. It is also accessible with Priority Pass so it isn’t very exclusive but it is a fine space to spend a bit of time.
I headed to the gate at 3:15pm (which was printed on my boarding pass) but boarding didn’t begin until 4:05pm. The new Condor livery stands out — bright zebra stripes on the outside of the plane. My plane had green stripes.
After getting settled on board, the boarding process was quickly finished and we ended up only being about 30 minutes late for take off.
Business Class is the first 8 rows of the plane. We boarded through the second door so the Business Class cabin was to the left upon boarding. Business Class is very eye catching and modern; with the dark blue, some dark wood, metal and accents of the stripes.
The seats are laid out in a 1-2-1 configuration. So if you are flying solo, you will want a window seat for more privacy. All of row 2 are more spacious seats that come with added benefits and an additional charge. There is no row 1.
The best seats for a solo traveler are A or K in rows 2, 4, 6, and 8. The seats are staggered so that those seats are close to the window with the storage on the aisle side.
The other rows are spaced so your seat is close to the aisle with the storage by the window.
I had seat 6K. The bathroom is right behind 8K so it would be best to avoid that seat.
The seat feels familiar and shares a lot of similarities with other Business Class seats I’ve flown. The seat itself can be set to various positions from fully upright for take off and landing to fully flat for sleeping. The control is simple and located near your left arm. There are no physical buttons, it is more of a touch screen type control which wasn’t always responsive to me. The very far left button is for the light which I noticed was bumped quite easily.
Above the seat controls are the small storage areas. There is no “locker” but there is space for water bottles, glasses, cell phone, etc. Below are the items at the seat upon boarding: headphones, water bottle, and amenity kit as well as a small pack of crackers.
Just above this storage area is a small adjustable reading light.
Just below the storage area are the power outlets which includes a standard USB-A and USB-C for charging phones and computers as well as a universal power outlet. If you use the provided headphones, they plug in here. However, I was able to connect my Bluetooth headphones to the inflight entertainment system easily.
Next to the power outlets is a remote control for the screen. It reminds me of an Apple TV remote and the top portion is a touch pad, but I found it didn’t work properly and it was easier to just touch the screen directly. It does have a countdown timer for the length of your flight which is a nice feature.
The screen itself is large and high definition. There was a good amount of movies though the TV shows were limited. It also has a map feature to track your flight.
Just below the screen is the table the folds down and out. You’ll notice the provided slippers as well.
The large white “tube” on the left (above) is a mattress pad. Additionally on the seat was a pillow and comforter. They really want you to know you are in Business Class — in addition to the large writing on the comforter, I noticed branding on the glassware and even on the surface of the plates.
The amenity kit is pretty standard — socks, eye mask, lotion, lip balm and toothbrush/paste. If you wanted ear plugs, there was a note that said you could ask a flight attendant. A travel organizer pouch (with zebra stripes) was also provided.
I did fully convert my seat to a bed but found it not as comfortable as other flights. For one thing, there is an arm rest between the seat and the window that can’t be lowered so it really confines you to a small space and leaves a lot of room wasted. Second, I found the cabin temperature to be too warm (and the provided blanket quite thick).
There are no air vents at the seat so you are stuck with the set cabin temperature.
Service & Dining
Before take off, I was offered the choice of orange juice or sparkling wine to enjoy with my bag of crackers.
Once we were airborne, the flight attendants passed out warm towels, followed by beverage service with a pack of nuts.
Paper menus were also provided.
Not too long after we were at cruising altitude, dinner was served. Everyone was provided the same starter plate with choice of bread. The salad was a bit wilted but everything else was well presented and tasty.
I picked the ravioli as my main and appreciated the grilled veggies.
After the main course, we were served both a cheese plate and then, immediately after that was served, another flight attendant delivered the lemon tart dessert.
The flight attendants were efficient with minimal personalization or chit-chat.
About 90 minutes before landing, breakfast was served. It was the same plate for everyone (fruit, salad bowl, and ham omelet) with a choice of bread/pastry product and jam.
Just before landing, the pilot announced that another Condor plane was visible out the right side window. It was a first for me to see so clearly another plane following the exact same flight path.
We landed in Frankfurt right on schedule.
Unfortunately we had a remote stand that required a bus to the terminal. For some reason they only brought one set of stairs and offloaded the passengers from the very last door of the plane. So Business Class passengers were the last off.
I wouldn’t hesitate to fly Condor Business Class again in the future. I have found award flights with Alaska Airlines miles to be pretty easy to find (unlike others) and the taxes and fees are quite low (unlike British). I would probably choose Finnair over Condor for a trans-Atlantic flight, but I would definitely pick Condor over British because of their outrageously high fees for mileage bookings.
Have you tried Condor’s new Business Class product? What are your thoughts?