Kraków (KRK) – Frankfurt (FRA)
10 September 2015
We left my hometown in Poland about three and a half hours before scheduled departure time and arrived at Kraków Airport about two hours before departure. The check-in process was quick and I was issued boarding passes all the way to Seattle and my three checked bags were tagged “HON Priority”. The check-in agent also presented me with a stylish red Lufthansa First Class ticket jacket, which I was surprised that they had those at smaller airports (I was also surprised that they had a HON tag).
After saying goodbye to my relatives and clearing security, I headed to the Kraków Airport Schengen Business Lounge where I was able to eat breakfast and catch up on emails. I’ve reviewed the lounge plenty of times before so I decided not to this time as the lounge experience was the same. I actually really like this lounge since it is my “home” lounge in Poland, and my “home” lounge in Seattle is the United Club.
Boarding was announced in the lounge about thirty minutes prior to scheduled departure time and we were driven to the aircraft by bus. Kraków Airport’s new terminal is supposed to open soon and has jetways, hopefully it will also feature an updated lounge. This Lufthansa B737-300 had been sitting in Kraków since the day before yesterday because of the strike, so two days before my flight it was already in Kraków.
European boarding is always a mess (though they did have a Priority queue in the terminal) and after waiting a bit, I quickly took my seat in 1A. Thankfully there was no one in 1C and therefore I had the entire row to myself. Intra-European Business Class is simply Economy with a blocked middle seat and better food; it is definitely not worth paying for, however it usually comes with a larger award ticket for free.
We pushed back a bit behind schedule and made it to the runway shortly thereafter, leading to a slightly delayed departure time.
Once airborne, the captain announced our flight time would be about one hour and five minutes, he also wished us a pleasant flight. From what I could tell Economy wasn’t that full, however every seat in Business (except the seat next to me) was taken. Business Class was just three rows on this flight.
I was a bit shocked when I saw the way breakfast was presented – on plastic! Normally this isn’t how meals are presented on Intra-European Business Class with Lufthansa (just read my other trip reports). Usually the meal is served on a white Lufthansa tray, with a mini menu, real cutlery, and the food is on real tableware. I assume that because of the strike they had to get last minute catering and this was the best they could do.
The breakfast consisted of a fruit salad, and three bite-size sandwiches which had cheese, salmon, tomatoes, lettuce, and ham. In addition there was a (chocolate?) bar for dessert. I had some tea with lemon and sugar along with my breakfast.
I ate quickly and gazed outside for the remainder of the flight, it was a beautiful day in the sky.
We began descending about twenty minutes before scheduled arrival time and circled above Frankfurt before landing.
We landed about five minutes ahead of scheduled arrival time and I was praying that we park at a remote stand (because those continuing in First Class or HON Circle Members receive a special car transfer).
And we did! Yay for remote stands! Unfortunately the car was a Mercedes van and not a Porsche, I asked the driver as to why and he told me that one other person was supposed to be also driven, though they didn’t show up and perhaps took the bus.
The drive took about five minutes and the driver recommended that he take me to the Pier B entrance as I could walk to the First Class Lounge in Pier B (non-Schengen) and then be driven to my connecting flight from there. I only had about an hour and fifteen minutes and therefore not enough time to visit the First Class Terminal as that would require a bit of walking.
We arrived at the entrance to Pier B about five minutes after leaving the remote stand and I thanked my driver for the ride and wished him a pleasant day. The only disadvantage of flying the A380 to America from Frankfurt is that they all leave early in the morning and therefore it is hard to maximise the ground experience in Frankfurt. Since I have been to the First Class Terminal already twice, I figured I would swap the experience for the A380 experience in First Class.