Date: 20 May 2016.
Flight time: 3 hours 45 minutes.
The course in Nicosia goes well, and once more the Cypriot authorities are excellent hosts. Of course, it also helps that the weather is truly outstanding and makes a welcome change from the drab and dreary weather we have been experiencing back home lately.
GETTING TO THE AIRPORT
Transport: Car rental.
Journey time: About thirty minutes.
The distance from Nicosia, which is inland, to the airport by the sea at Larnaca is 47 kilometres and it is a motorway all the way. The valiant M. drops off the car back at Sixt and then we walk across the road to the modern terminal building.
Location: Upper level, rows 17 to 19.
Facilities: There is one row for Business Class passengers and two rows for Economy Class passengers.
Counters: Web check-in and app check-in with Swiss International Air Lines are possible.
The airport looks very modern. It is fairly quiet when I arrive, despite that fact that there are a few flights leaving around the same time as mine. There is no queue for check-in and immigration and security are pretty swift.
The check-in agent informs me that Edelweiss Air does not have a contract with the lounge contractor, so no lounge today. But that is alright, by the time I am through security it is only another 15 minutes before boarding begins.
Priority Boarding: My flight will be boarding from gate 29. There is a separate queue and even a separate call made for Business Class passengers.
Configuration: 2 + 2
Seat: The seat on this aircraft is different to the one on the outbound flight. Apart from the colour of the covers, the seat pockets look slightly different too. But it is still basically the same idea, with the middle seat being kept empty in Business Class. Once again, there are pillows at every seat as I board the aircraft. And everything from the pillows to the headrest covers is branded with the famous Edelweiss.
Pitch: I was unable to find information about the pitch on Edelweiss Air. What I can say though, is that the pitch is very good and allows you to stretch your legs easily.
Edelweiss operates its A 320s in a seating capacity for 168 seats. In today’s configuration there are twelve Business Class seats and 132 seats in Economy Class. In Business Class all twelve seats are occupied.
Facilities: Reading lamp and air vent.
Audio and Video: Edelweiss Air provides entertainment via Wifi. You need to download the app though first before you board the plane.
The crew are a friendly bunch. In particular the young lady serving the Business Class cabin is warm and very charming in her manner.
There are complimentary Swiss newspapers available in the galley for all passengers as you enter the aircraft.
Welcome drink on the ground: A selection of Champagne, orange juice or still water.
Towel before the meal: A hot towel is offered after take-off, before the meal.
Pre-meal drink: Coke Zero, served with a bag of savoury nibbles.
Choice: Polenta (vegetarian) or beef.
Delivery: Tray service.
Type of meal: Lunch.
- Boiled beef with a pesto salsa, cucumber and radish.
- Mixed salad with mushrooms and an interesting dressing.
- A plate of Camembert and Tilsiter (Swiss hard cheese) with apricot and pear bread.
- Polenta in a cream sauce with tomatoes, spinach and leek.
- A selection from the breadbasket.
- A choice of either crème brûlée or ‘Stortzifladen’. The latter is a typically Swiss sweet. It is a sort of cinnamon and pear pie that is served with cream.
- Tea or coffee.
- A praliné from Sprüngli.
The meal is served on crisp white linen. The tray arrives with the first course, salad and cheese plate already on it. The tray is cleared before the main dish arrives. The dessert is also served separately.
Once more I am quite impressed with the amount and quality of the food Edelweiss dishes up on a flight of less than four hours. It really is quite amazing. What is more, the service is very efficient but without being hurried, so there are rarely any long waits in between the different dishes. Are you paying attention SWISS?
The meal concludes with a cup of coffee and a praliné from Sprüngli. And even that has an Edelweiss on it!
By the time the meal finished, there are still two hours to go to Zürich. I power up my Kindle with the intention of reading a bit to pass the time. But then I nod off and the next time I open my eyes, the aircraft is already approaching Lake Constance, twenty minutes out of Zürich.
It is a lovely day for flying. The air is clear and the view of the Alps is really stunning.
The flight arrives at gate E52. At this time of day Zürich airport is very quiet, so there are no delays in us arriving. Zürich really is a brilliant airport. We land at 14h15. By 14h43 I have already collected my checked in luggage and I am on the train home.
And now I have a week at home before my next trip. But that will be a vacation, not work.