Sponsor Message:
Aviation Trip Reports Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Ten Hours On A 737 Across The Atlantic - Privatair  
User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Posted (2 years 8 months 1 day ago) and read 20828 times:

KLM operated by Privatair Final Days


Since October 2005, Privatair has operated KLM’s second service to Houston, and KL 663 and 664 operates six times weekly, and HB-JJA, this all business class Boeing 737-700 BBJ (also known as BBJ 1), has graced Houston countless times through the past six years. Earlier this summer, KL has announced the discontinuation of the Privatair contract, and will take the second daily service itself. It is possibly a sign of growth on this route, due to increased competitions from the Middle Eastern airlines or simply the end of a lucrative premium market in Houston. Regardless of the reason, I can’t help to book a flight on this Privatair flight when the summer business class fare was launched earlier in the summer season. I was able to get a nice Z fare for a roundtrip betweem Amsterdam and Europe via this Privatair service from Houston. I am pretty sure this is the closest that I can get in terms of getting a flight on the BBJ, especially BBJ-1. Here is the full report!

Album links:
KL 664 – http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=8QbNHDNy5bqTe4
KL 663 – http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=8QbNHDNy5bqTrg

August 20, 2011
KL 664 IAH-AMS Lv2010 Arr1255+1 Boeing 737-700BBJ HB-JJA

Booking:
KLM.com is fairly easy to use and I am able to book the flights and made all the seat assignments accordingly. I like the ability to change seats and flights using the online tool. There is no hassle in booking the flights that I want.

Houston Airport:
I arrived IAH from a Continental flight from New Orleans, and we parked at gate C45 around 4:30pm. Houston airport was busy given the CO hub situation, and I walked towards Terminal D, which was fairly easy to find. Terminal D was fairly quiet after the early afternoon rush and I personally caught the first BA 777 service pushing back from gate. Both AF 77W and LH 744 left by then with only SQ 61 operated by 9V-SWG, which was in its initial boarding stage, and only the Emirates flight to Dubai. My plan was to get the boarding pass from KLM lounge, so I went straight to KLM Crown Lounge, one of the rare overseas KLM lounges. However I was confronted with this sign:


The lounge was closed till 5pm, so I just took a walk around the terminal. I was able to snap a few photos, including a tail shot of 9V-SWG. I wish I could afford an F or J flight on SQ 61/62 one day.


Then I saw Qatar Airways’ Boeing 777-200LR A7-BBD arriving from Doha and it was a beautiful airplane.
Beautiful plane


Close-up of the tail


KLM Crown Lounge, Houston
The lounge finally opened around 5:05pm and a couple arrived ahead of me and they seemed to come from somewhere as well. The agent was cheerful and I was welcomed to sit in the lounge, while she logged on the system and printed me the boarding passes. When I inquired about the loading, she was that it was light and around 20 or so passengers. Since the other couple left the lounge for some errands and I took the opportunities to take many shots. There were basically two main seating areas, one dining area, and connected with a corridor. There was a “red chair” circular area and a small business center with four Internet connected computers. Free WIFI was available. It was a mini version of the Crown Lounge in Amsterdam. Just a side note, the lounges look pretty nice here in Houston, and BA Terraces look gorgeous. There was one generic lounge, as well as an Air France lounge.

Entrance


KLM Crown Lounge sign


Main Seating Area


Signature Red Chair Area


35 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 1, posted (2 years 8 months 1 day ago) and read 20884 times:

Dining Area


Familiar sofa seating area with sky/clouds pictures


Beverage self-service stations


Cold fridges with soft drinks, beers and salad dressings


Liquors station


Starbucks Coffee Machine


Tazo Tea Station


Vegetables dips


Cheese


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 2, posted (2 years 8 months 1 day ago) and read 20850 times:

Sandwiches


Assorted Potato chips


Assorted Snacks – savory snacks, sweets and chocolate bars


Warmed food – Pasta


Soup Station – Chicken Tortilla soup – nice and spicy


Corridor with newspapers


Dutch newspapers


Second seating area


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 3, posted (2 years 8 months 1 day ago) and read 20858 times:

Business Station


A plastered war


My lunch – turkey sandwich and Chicken tortilla soup – delicious


Flight Information:
The inbound flight from Amsterdam arrived around 4:10pm and I caught its arrival into Houston IAH. HB-JJA looked like a hard-working bird and had possibly glazed this airport many times.
Gate D10 – its temporary home at IAH for the day


A beautiful bird – caught the Privatair sign operated for KLM sign


Parked


Tail shot


I left the lounge around 7:20pm to do some plane spotting and shot this BA 777 shot.
G-YMMO looks beautiful this late afternoon – getting ready for its return to LHR at 8:30pm.


For the outbound flight, boarding began at 7:34pm, as the loading was very light and a little less than half full. There were no gate lice and the pursuer was personally escorting the first passenger down the jetway. It was definitely atypical KLM and service was more personable with this Private Jet service.



Another shot of the plane at boarding – parked next to BA 777 G-YMMO second daily LHR flight


Two well-groomed F/As immediately greeted passengers on boarding and assisted with hanging coats and carryon. A third F/A came around the cabin with glasses of water, orange juice and champagne. Everyone was settling within minutes and there were the obligatory newspapers and magazines rounds. Amenity kits were also passed out. There were a total of four F/As – two men including the purser and a galley F/A in the aft, and the two young women F/As worked most of the service. They were all professional groomed and well trained. They spoke perfect English and had experiences working with a more exclusive group of passengers. The service was more personable and warmer than your typical World Business Class experience. It definitely displays a private jet aura. With a light load, door was closed at 7:45pm. Flying time was announced at 9 hours and five minutes. We pushed back early at 7:48pm, and taxied towards R/W9. Very short taxi time with near zero traffic at IAH, we took off at 7:57pm, thirteen minutes ahead of schedule.

Routing:
The pilot made a detailed announcement before takeoff and due to the night flight, he would keep his announcements to a minimal due prior to descent into Amsterdam. The Skyshow decided to go out of order, and the only source I had was www.flightaware.com. The routing took us at 36,000feet initially, until we crossed Memphis, which we climbed to 37,000feet for the rest of the flight. We flew past Louisville, Cincinnati, Columbus, Ontario, Canada, and then towards Dublin and Manchester. It was a smooth flight most of the way, except the first few hours. However as typical with most European airlines, the seat belt sign was not turned on at all.

Cabin and seat comfort:
This BBJ1 has 44 seats and eleven rows of four abreast seating. The cabin was fitted with the extended overhead bins and was cleaned. My original seat 8A was changed to 8C due to a broken seat situation. I did not change row since I could just sit in the window during takeoff and landing. I have a feeling that recline function might have gone wrong and they are not going to fix it till its arrival in Amsterdam. Row 10 and 11AC can be blocked as crew rest, and I presume on light flight, that will happen, just like this particular flight. There are two economy style seats behind 11AC, so those are possibly rest seats for the crew if the flight went out 100% full. Three bathrooms – normal size – one in front and two in back, and you can find the usual array of KLM amenities like various lotions and sprays. Best seat in the house – Row 1 because it has extra legroom and closed to entrance. However, due to the sliding nature of the seats, Row 1 may not be too good in full recline position. I don’t know how to explain it but you will understand why I am cautious after seeing the seats in recline position. Row 6 is the exit row, but no additional legroom and all cabin baggage, pillows and blankets have to go to overhead bins during takeoff and landing, so it might not be my preferred row as well.

Okay the seats are sliding lie flat types and obviously first generation. It is very uncomfortable in full recline position, and the lumbar support is on the hard side – that is obviously a personal preference. There is a personal lamp in addition to the overhead light. All the buttons for recline and tray table are on the sides. There is adjustable headrest as well, but the you can only extend the legrest by pulling the lever in the bottom cushion. I actually miss the usual seat illustration card. Legrest operates in an interesting manner and the photos will illustrate them. My English is just not good enough for explaining the mechanisms. There are also plenty of pockets for gadgets in the back of each seat except row 1. Individual universal power outlets are available at each seat and they work very well, as I recharge my cell phone during the flight. However I could barely catch an hour of nap on this flight because it was just so difficult to sleep, as the seats are very narrow and closed to the floor in sleeping positions. The seat is definitely disappointing, and I hope in the future, they can figure out a full flat and solo access seats if they win any new all-business-class service from major airlines.


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 4, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20843 times:

Cabin shot – from Row 9 to back


Looking forward


Best seat in the house – 1A and C


8D and F before the passenger arrived


Closeup of seat
Magazine pockets and storages for small item – note the shining stainless steel legs


Buttons for recline and tray table ejection


Seats in recline position


Seats in full recline position


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 5, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20808 times:

Legrest and seat lever in leg cushion


Funny illustration of the legrest – note the lever and the legrest was in different positions


Amenities
Same as KLM World Business class
Amenity kit
A full-sized pillow and blanket are placed at each seat prior to departure

Catering:
KLM has introduced the Marcel Wander’s tableware, glassware and china, and of course Privatair features the same service as your typical WBC service. The catering is the same and the purser passed out the menu to each passenger after takeoff and also did his first greeting and we were addressed by our last names. I still have mixed feelings about some of these KLM enhancements. I still don’t like the plastic salad bowl, also used to carry various side dishes. They look alright but it was just un-premium when you are use it in business class meals. The small paper boxes used to carry butter, salt & pepper shaker, and peppermint candies are okay, but not sure whey they need it.

Red boxes used on the main meal


Blue boxes on the second meal

The plastic salt and pepper shakers are cheap no matter from what perspective. Its light weight is possibly the thing KLM likes the most, but I just feel that it cheapens a premium product. However, the new eating utensils are nice, and the new product came from interesting accessories that assisted the crew in serving the meals, especially hot entrees. I really like the new snap tray used to hand out the casserole dishes, and the new tea cover, which doubles as a holder for tea bags and keeping the tea warm. The new stirrer is also nice and I actually bought a set on a previous flight. Breakfast cards are available on this flight and I like this service as well. It speeded up the breakfast service and despite the smaller casserole sizes for main courses on second meals, it is nice to get all kinds of appetizers and side dishes. Breads featured are mini cinnamon rolls, croissants, and French rolls. They also introduced a new fruit cup service that the F/A served along with the usual juices service. It is interesting that no smoothie or yogurt drinks were offered on outstations – a bit more selection from Amsterdam in terms of breakfast beverages.

Snap on the casserole dishes


The new tea cover/dispenser


The new stirrer


The service sequence was the usual – the F/As first passed out the Dig E players, which I did not use and could not report on the contents but I had enough Dig E experiences on my Alaska Airlines years, so I really don’t need them. Linen was passed out to cover the tables, followed with the first beverage service with mixed nuts.


After a second round of beverage, hot towels were passed out, followed by the appetizer service. No carts are used on this dinner service, and trays were passed out from the galley. Feta cheese and croutons are added individually to the salad by the F/A – another enhancement. Bread basket featuring wheat raisin rolls and focaccia rolls were passed out next, as well as the reappearance of the beverage trolley. Entrée trolleys followed, after the appetizer plates and salad bowls are collected. Of course another round of the beverage trolleys quickly followed. Then the typical cheese, fruit or dessert service, and with a light load, you can have a bit more. Another thing I don’t like about KLM service, a proper premium service offers cheese, fruit, AND desserts. Only airlines like United will offer a cheese or dessert service. Tea and coffee service was next, followed by bottled water and pralines service. The purser also collected the breakfast cards at this time. Lights were turned off, and there was a snack station in the back featuring the usual chocolate digestive cookies, Mars chocolate bars, crackers and leftover pralines, along with bottled waters and soft drinks. Breakfast service commenced about two hours prior to landing, and it was interesting that the F/As just walked along the cabin and raising the window blinds to half positions. If you want to sleep through breakfast, you really need to use your eyeshades. It commenced with another round of juices and fruit cups service, and then the hot towel, and then fresh linen to cover your table. Carts are used this time and trays are passed out with all the requested items pre-arranged in the trays. A beverage trolley followed the meal tray delivery, and the beverage trolley appeared a second time. There were lots of beverage runs during meal services, and with a better F/A to passenger ratio, the beverage refills are frequent during meals and all individual requests are filled. The F/As are also less rush than your typical KLM wide-bodied flights.

Wines – I am no expert on this subject and KLM decides to serve all Italian wines this month, and the selection was pretty poor. The Chardonnay I had was disastrous and it was an embarrassment for the crews to serve these poor wines. The only positive light was the Billecart-Salmon Brut champagne, which I will stick with on the return flight. The F/As have no issues refilling your wines and no glasses are recollected without the comment, if you want something else. It is always a nice gauge if you want to see if your crews are top notch or not.

Here is the menu and wine list:
Menu
Dinner


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 6, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20801 times:

Appetizer
Lobster tail and claw
Offered with wasabi mayonnaise


Main Courses
Please choose one of the following:

Pan-fried Salmon
Served over angel hair pasta and mixed vegetables

Or
Seared ancho chicken breast
With tomato pepper sauce, grilled yellow squash, courgette and rice with vegetables
Or
Traditional Hutspot
A Dutch specialty featuring mashed potatoes, carrots and onions served with braised beef

Dessert
We invite you to select your choice of lemon almond tart, uptown cheesecake, a cheese plate or fresh fruit
Your choice of freshly brewed coffee or tea served with Belgian chocolates

Pathetic lemon almond tart


For your Comfort
Bottles of mineral water will be distributed after your meal.

Refreshments
At any time during the flight an assortment of refreshments is available upon your request.

Breakfast a la carte
Please fill out breakfast choices on your “breakfast card”.


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 7, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20791 times:

Tomato and feta Omelette (savory)
Enhanced by Parmesan roasted potatoes and turkey sausage
Or
Cinnamon Swirl French Toast amandine (sweet)


Yogurt – Plain or Fruit Flavored


Cereals – Cornflakes or Granola


Preserves – Strawberry Jam or Apricot Jam or Honey
Cold Plate – Cheese or Smoked Salmon


Hot Breakfast Dish – Savory or Sweet

To complement your breakfast, we offer you a variety of hot rolls, assorted juices, freshly brewed coffee, decaffeinated coffee, tea or champagne!

Wine list
Champagne
Billecart-Salmon Brut

White Wines
Antinori, Campogrande Tenuta Santa Cristina 2010, Orvieto Classico, Italy
Antinori, Chardonnay Tormaresca 2010, Puglia, Italy

Red Wines
Antinori, Primitivo Torcicoda Tormaresca 2008, Salento, Italy
Il Bruciato, Tenuta Guado al Tasso 2008, Bolgheri, Italy

Dessert Wines
Prunotto, Moscato d’Asti 2010, Piemonte, Italy

Port
Taylor’s 2003, Late Bottled Vintage Port
Croft Pink Port, Portugal

Flight attendants:
The Privatair F/As are definitely more personable than your typical KLM crews, and they are obviously used to a more demanding set of passengers, and know what premium service is all about. They are very professionally groomed and are very experienced in doing this Houston to Amsterdam service. They are knowledgeable about the clientele and will also make small talks when you initiate them. It is the right mix of being personable and warmth. They also work a bit harder and during meal services, they basically run up and down the aisles for countless times, and every request is answered with a “yes of course.” Between meals, they kept the movement to a minimal for obvious reasons, as the seats really slide closed to the floor. If you need anything, you are requested to use the call buttons, and another thing I appreciate is that they work very quietly in the galleys, especially the cleaning up and breakfast preparation time.

The purser made an effort to address each passenger a few times in passing menus, taking individual orders, and of course the final service – passing out those KLM houses.

Morning over Atlantic Ocean


Landing:
Descent began at 11:30am Amsterdam local time, and it was a nice day here in Amsterdam.
Winglet shot


Windmills in the ocean


We landed on R/W18R at 11:57am, and as typical with Amsterdam, it was a long taxi, but got a nice close gate at D5, and we disembarked at 12:08pm, forty-three minutes prior to our arrival time. Just a few plane-spotting notes – I caught CX 744 B-HUE resting in the tarmac, as well as Malaysian’s Boeing 747-400 9M-MPO and China Airlines’ 50th anniversary Boeing 747-400 B-18208 getting ready for their afternoon return to Asia.

Amsterdam Airport shots:
Privatair at D5


Tail and winglet shot


A couple shots from the observation deck on the Schegen area
Delta Boeing 767-300ER along with lots of KLM MD-11s


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 8, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20768 times:

August 25, 2011
KL 663 AMS-IAH Lv1435 Arr1820 Boeing 737-700BBJ HB-JJA

Amsterdam Airport
Schiphol Airport is a pretty large airport and is well maintained and in some sense, it is like a giant shopping mall with airline functions including. Not many pictures, since many of you have traveled in and out of AMS and are pros. However, I finally had the time to visit the observation deck and was not disappointed. The observation deck spread across all the major piers and of course KLM blue planes are all over the place, with many Delta planes in between. It was noon and peak hours for transatlantic flights. I have also noticed a huge amount of MD-11s and KLM was one the last major passenger operator of these tri-jets. I also spotted Martinair’s 50th anniversary retro livery Boeing 767-300ER, and had the chance to see Privatair’s HB-JJA towing to gate D3. There was no service on Wednesdays, so the plane got a day of rest in AMS.

View of the deck


F Pier with the strange finger jetways


KLM Airbus A330-200 PH-AOA – doing to Dammam and Doha


China Airlines B-18202 heading to BKK and TPE


KLM Pier E


KLM MD-11 PH-KCE “Audrey Hepburn” pushing back – KL 677 to Calgary


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 9, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20750 times:

Another KLM MD-11 – noted that the maintenance guys were out on the wing – not a common sight
KLM MD-11 PH-KCB heading to Vancouver


Martinair Boeing 767-300ER 50th Anniversary PH-MCT


Delta Boeing 767-300ER arriving – N185DN arriving from Seattle


Three Boeing 767-300ERs Winglets side by side


Transavia Boeing 737-800 Winglet – on my “to fly” list in 2012


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20746 times:

HB-JJA towing to gate


HB-JJA at D3


KLM Crown Lounge in Amsterdam
No pictures, as I have posted quite a number of pictures inside the lounge in previous KLM reports. The lounge was busy, but not packed. I sat towards the back with some rooms to stretch. Found a Chinese paper to read, and I enjoyed a bowl of vegetable consommé mixed with beef consommé – my own mix. Food was the usual – soup stations – beef consommé and vegetable soup (interchanged with tomato), beef patties with beetroot slaw (ran out), cold cuts, sliced cheese, olives, mixed rolls, fresh fruits, small cakes, and assorted snacks with self service alcoholic and non-alcoholic station.

Flight Information


HB-JJA at Gate D3


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20732 times:

Getting catered


Refueling


Gate D3


The return flight was very light in loading, and I checked it daily, and there were less than five and six assigned seats, and today’s loading ended up with thirteen, and the security at the gate told me that there were only four paid passengers. Good for me and not good for KLM! Everyone was at the gate by 2:10pm, and boarding began at 2:20pm with the usual Privatair’s purser leading the first passenger down the plane. I had the honor this morning, as I wanted to catch a picture of the cabin. I was not disappointed.

Cabin view – whole plane – very nice configuration


Couple more shots of the cabin and seats


Pre-takeoff champagne service – new Marcel Wander’s glass


The purser welcomed everyone to spread around with only 13 passengers. I stayed put with row 8, as I wanted more privacy and no one would get weird out with my obsessive photo taking, and when I opened the blind, I would not disturb anyone. Amenity kits were passed out, as well as newspapers and magazines, along with a tray of orange juice, champagne, and water. Door was closed at 2:27pm and we pushed back at 2:30pm. We had a very short taxi today to R/W24.

We took off at 2:41pm, and our flying time was ten hours and thirty minutes – pretty strong head wind all the way. The Airshow was not fixed during its day off at Amsterdam, so I presumed it would not be fixed since the service would be over soon. The pilot gave a brief talk prior to takeoff and the routing basically took us over Scotland, South of Greenland, Newfoundland, Toronto, and then straight to Houston. The ride was a bit choppy across the Ocean, and the seat belt sign came on twice, which was a bit unusual for European airlines.

There were four flight attendants serving the flight – three women – one in galley and two busy in the aisle, with a male purser taking orders and doing the greeting. They all spoke French to each other, so I presumed they were all Swiss based. However the purser spoke Dutch too so I presumed English and French are mandatory and Dutch speaking pursuers are preferable on all KLM flights. No wonder all these pursers are familiar with the KLM service and procedures. The F/As were slightly more senior on this flight, but were very efficient with the meal service. The service was obviously personable with such a small load. The service is pretty good compared to your usual KLM experience. However the crew coming over to Amsterdam was more attentive and friendly. They were more personable and wiling to chat than this set of crews, which were friendly and efficient, but lack that personable touch.


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 12, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20716 times:

Beverage with mixed nuts


Over Scotland


Same wine list – pathetic Italian wines and I stuck with Billecart Salmon Brut champagne during lunch. No problem, and here is the menu:

Food & Wines
Jonnie Boer X Marcel Wanders


Main Service
Appetizer
Smoked Salmon
Accompanied by smoked potatoes and cream of horseradish, served with an orange lime dressing


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 13, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20716 times:

Main Courses
Please choose one of the following:
Pan-fried fillet of Halibut
Presented on a salsa of garden peas, offered with mussels, broad beans and mussel gravy

Or
Slow-cooked fillet of chicken
Served with Thai-style green curry sauce, pearl pasta, parsnip mash, spicy pak-choi and cucumber brunoise
Or
Braised Veal
With horseradish sauce, cumin potatoes, spinach, carrots, and pearl onions

Dessert
We invite you to select your choice of yogurt rhubarb dessert, citrus tart with coffee filling, a cheese plate with Bresse Bleu and Reypenaer cheese and seasonal fruit (strawberries today)


Highlander Whiskey


Peppermint tea with tea cover/dispenser


Lunch was actually very good, and I like the appetizer and the halibut dish much. The appetizer is very creative and the salmon is fresh, and I like the use of the salmon roe. The dressing is a bit on the strong side, but goes well with the salmon in general. The salad is very boring – just some crumbled cheese and green leaves, with a lemon olive oil dressing in that stupid red box with a cheap salt and pepper shaker, and butter. Not sure why KLM needs a box, and maybe a nice cover-up of the cheap plastic things and packaged sides they used now in business class. The halibut entrée is very nice and I like the green salsa, but the portion is very small. Dessert is a bit strange – the citrus tart with coffee filling, but the F/As welcomed me to try everything. I have noticed that there was no chocolate service on the return flight. Another enhancement by KLM!

There was a snack bar setup in the back with drinks and snack, including TUC crackers, MARS chocolate bars, mini MENTOS, and Time-Out chocolate digestive cookies. I took a picture of all the selection here. They were all presented nicely in a box. Around 9:30pm Amsterdam time, the F/As came out with baskets of freshly warmed snacks, and I chose the sausage roll and waffle. The waffle was always good.

For your comfort
Bottles of mineral water will be distributed after your meal.


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20705 times:

Refreshments
At any time during the flight, an assortment of refreshments is available upon your request.


Sky Break
During the flight, crew will serve a choice of a veal sausage roll, a waffle, cheese, crudités and Ben & jerry’s ice cream



Around 4:40pm local time, the second meal service began and the hot towels reappeared with linen to place on the table. The meals were served from a cart, and the F/A recommended fish, and with a description of the chicken as sweet and sour, I immediately went with the fish. I hate sweet and sour sauce. The fish ended up pretty nice and were the only edible thing in the tray, along with the prawn crackers, which were crispy today. The dessert was just nasty, and the appetizer was too coconut-y for me. I just ate the prawns.

Light meal
Shortly before arrival, we will be serving an Indonesian light meal.


Appetizer
Indonesian-style sweet potato salad
With lemongrass marinated prawns


Hot dish
Please choose one of the following:
Ikan mangut
Panga fish with a creamy coconut sauce accompanied by aromatic rice and sweet and sour vegetables served with shrimp crackers

Or
Chicken besengek
Mildly-seasoned chicken offered with white rice and sweet and sour vegetables served with shrimp crackers


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 15, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20698 times:

Dessert
Roedjak manis
Traditional Indonesian cucumber salad with a sweet sauce


Contents of box – peppermint candy, salt & pepper shakers and cinnamon cake


Cinnamon cake


Entertainment:


I got the Dig E players this time, and the selection was the same as KLM AVOD entertainment system on other aircrafts. It was not an extensive selection, so I just watched a very old episode of “Everybody Loves Raymond” and watched Family Guys and Hot in Cleveland in my I-phones. The Universal power outlets are definitely good, and honestly this is the single most important feature that all airlines need to install in all seats in all cabin classes, and American Airlines, you are very behind in this matter especially on your international fleet. PTV in 763 will be nice, but please change those EmPort outlets to these universal power outlets.

Seats:
Just some additional pictures showing various features of the seats – a bit better than then outbound flight, since I had the freedom and time to do it.

Seat buttons


Tray Table


These steel legs – they made lots of sounds during takeoff and landing


Seats in recline position


Headrest – adjustable


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 16, posted (2 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 20688 times:

Legrest lever


Seats in full recline position – very low and close to the floor


Another view


Another view from the back of the seat


Legroom shot:


Arrival:
Descent began at 4:26pm, a bit earlier than anticipated, and the F/A had to rush a bit on the landing preparation. We landed on R/W27 at 5:50pm and parked at gate D10 again four minutes later. Nice see the Qatar Airways Boeing 777-200LR A7-BBF next door! The immigration hall was relatively quiet, as most Qatar Airways passengers were almost done processing, and the BA 777 flight had yet to arrive, along with Continental’s usual Mexican arrivals. I had global entry and was out in minutes. Bags were already in the baggage claim, as I completed the formalities. It was very quick – not a surprise given the small load. A perfect end to a nice service!

Conclusion:


It is definitely a very nice service, and it is sad to see it going away soon. I can’t help to overhear a few conversations between frequent traveler and flight attendants concerning the discontinuation of this service. This all-business-class jet service allows short and easier boarding and deplaning. There is no need to fight for overhead spaces and boarding is just so much easier especially in Amsterdam when elite boarding was hard to reinforce and the gate spaces are limited. Of course it is hard to miss that private jet aura and the Privatair F/As really know their passengers well, and are observant and provide a very business oriented service. This premium ambiance is something that KLM can’t really provide because their crews work different cabins on different flights. With airlines struggling with premium loads and more executives flying premium economy and economy in transatlantic flights, a full service flight may work better for KLM, and of course the capabilities to carry cargoes can improve profitability. However KLM WBC meal services and wines are just lacking, and the wine lists are just disappointing at best. There are surely nice improvements, like adding condiments to the green salad and fresh full-sized appetizers, I still don’t understand why the second meal on westbound flights has to be Indonesian style, which is a bit spicy and tough on the stomach especially towards the end of a ten hours journey. Why can’t KLM offer a typical Western supper? I will prefer pasta or typical stew dish or even a chunky soup with bread rolls to a Beef Rendang or Coconut chicken dish. Today’s selection is not even the usual popular dishes – completely unknown and the fish dish just sounded awful, and You can offer an Indonesian meal option, but I am sure most passengers want to a Westernized meal options. Even as a fan of authentic Asian food, the Indonesian meals are not what I want on a plane, and it is more of a disappointment. Also most Americans are more conservative in their food preferences, and I feel that lots of food is wasted because they just don’t like the spice. Of course I understand the colonial history and the connection between Indonesia and the Netherlands, but spicy food was not really appropriate at that time of the day or at the final stage of the flight. This is still a mystery to me. Despite my disappointment with catering, Privatair definitely ups the games for KLM, and this service will be deeply missed.

Final picture – HB-JJA back in Houston again at D10!


User currently offlineAvianca From Venezuela, joined Jan 2005, 5900 posts, RR: 40
Reply 17, posted (2 years 8 months 20 hours ago) and read 20295 times:

what a great report! but please put some more pictures the next time !!! (just joking)

The service seems to be very good, also the food on the IAH-AMS flights was nothing special or?

What I am specially surprised is about the great lounge in IAH from KLM!

how much money do they spend on this? well they have 2 flights but still I can not imagine that it makes really sence to have a own lounge or?

Thank you and waiting for your next report.

saludos
Avianca



Colombia es el Mundo Y el Mundo es Colombia
User currently onlineTurkishWings From United States of America, joined May 2006, 1437 posts, RR: 8
Reply 18, posted (2 years 8 months 16 hours ago) and read 19798 times:

Great report... One of the best on the forum I must say... Thanks a lot for the effort...


Coffee - Tea or Me?
User currently offlinelychemsa From United States of America, joined Oct 2009, 1070 posts, RR: 3
Reply 19, posted (2 years 8 months 15 hours ago) and read 19501 times:

What are the loads like?

User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6658 posts, RR: 78
Reply 20, posted (2 years 8 months 11 hours ago) and read 18881 times:

Hi Carfield,

another great report with countless nice pictures! I flew MUC-CAI on a Privatair 738 (operating for LH) recently, but I was seated in Y Class. The plane was equipped with LH's new Y Class seats which you find on the A380 and it was even equipped with the NiceView airshow.

Quoting Carfield (Thread starter):
KLM MD-11 PH-KCE “Audrey Hepburn” pushing back – KL 677 to Calgary

Good to see it again, it operated my first MD-11 flight.

Quoting Carfield (Thread starter):
I got the Dig E players this time, and the selection was the same as KLM AVOD entertainment system on other aircrafts. It was not an extensive selection, so I just watched a very old episode of “Everybody Loves Raymond” and watched Family Guys and Hot in Cleveland in my I-phones. The Universal power outlets are definitely good, and honestly this is the single most important feature that all airlines need to install in all seats in all cabin classes, and American Airlines, you are very behind in this matter especially on your international fleet. PTV in 763 will be nice, but please change those EmPort outlets to these universal power outlets.

But those don't have an airshow, right?


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6414 posts, RR: 55
Reply 21, posted (2 years 8 months 7 hours ago) and read 18241 times:

Hi !

Nice report with nice pictures!

Food looks great atnd plentiful but very diasappointing that the seats are not horizontal lie-flat. Angled lie-flats should be a thing of thing of the past.

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly...T5, CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1834 posts, RR: 9
Reply 22, posted (2 years 8 months 6 hours ago) and read 18009 times:

Thanks for all your kind comments!

Since I am stuck here in NYC, I spent yesterday writing up all these reports, and for those who want to see my whole photo album, you can click on the shutterfly link, and you can look at all the pictures.

I am surprised about the lounge at IAH and the food is even better than the selection at its hometown at IAH. I guess BA also has a very nice lounge too, so IAH must be high yield enough to warrant lounges. AF also has its own lounge,which look pretty sad. I presume AF passengers can use this KLM lounge too. KLM will end this Privatair service in the end of October, and replace it with an Airbus A330. So I guess more people will use it then.

Outbound is around 20 - less than half full - not sure how many non-rev, but most passengers are revenue of sorts, since I saw most of them in the lounge.

The return had 13 passengers and there were non-rev, as the security guy at the gate told me there were only 4 revenue passengers, but I had a feeling that we had more than that. However I could not verify any information, but there were a number of passengers seating at the gate. There might also be two air marshalls too - at least the passengers at 1C and 2D fit that profile.

Anyway it is nice to fly a BBJ across the Atlantic Ocean and yes these sliding seats should be history. That might be the reason why the contract does not continue, same with Swiss - ending too at March 2012.

Carfield


User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2472 posts, RR: 15
Reply 23, posted (2 years 8 months 3 hours ago) and read 17662 times:

Hi

Nice trip report! Thanks for covering every detail of this rather exclusive flight.
Had the chance to make fly from IAH to AMS on this flight and brought back some nice memories.
Even with the hard-product leaking behind other carriers. It's still fun to fly a 737 over the atlantic. The load was 11 pax on my flight.


Greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offline767747 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 1883 posts, RR: 25
Reply 24, posted (2 years 8 months 2 hours ago) and read 17530 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Good report with lots of nice quality photos!

I've always thought KLM's premium food service looks hit or miss. The food on your IAH-AMS looks better than on the return; I like the idea of the breakfast card where you check off what you would like.

I remember seeing photos of the Privatair that Lufthansa operated with a 737-700. On your flights, the seats look to be reasonably comfy, and its nice that both flights were very empty and quiet.

Thanks for sharing!

Matthew (767747)


25 LondonCity : Great report which I enjoyed reading. It would be better were Privat Air to fit proper lie-flat beds on these flights. But I believe they weigh more
26 Carfield : Forget to talk about airshow... Well they have overhead video monitors showing safety videos, and they suppose to have an Airshow system too. However
27 ronerone : What an enjoyable trip report on Privatair/KLM! I may have missed something, but since when did KLM launch new serviceware? I think this new concept i
28 speedmarque : I believe those seats are the same as Virgin Atlantic's short-lived J2000 product............
29 Post contains images Lufthansa747 : Great stuff as usual... But nothing more expected from you. I think you're more stuck in the front rows of a plane than your house
30 SR 103 : Fantastic report as always Carfield! I have always wanted to try the Privatair BBJ flight and despite living in Houston, I never managed to. It is a s
31 Carfield : LOL...I wish I am stuck in SQ first class, than in my cousin's apartment riding out the storm. I love NYC, but having to stay home during the weekend
32 Post contains images abrelosojos : Thank you very much for the report. This is the only Privatair flight I have not done, and I will have to settle I guess through you . I had no idea t
33 rwSEA : Great report, thanks for sharing. It's interesting to compare this to the service on the regular KLM flights. I must say, the food selection in Housto
34 Pelle : Interesting report, not everyday you see a 737 cross the pond! How much extra range does the PrivatAir BBJ get compared to a standard 738?
35 brilondon : You really have too many pictures of the seats, but the TR was really interesting. You did not add the toilet shot though, thank you. This was a fasci
Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic Ten Hours On A 737 Across The Atlantic - Privatair
Username:
No username? Sign up now!
Password: 


Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Remember me on this computer (uses cookies)
  • Trip reports only! Other topics here
  • If criticizing an airline, express yourself in a dignified manner.
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Do not post copyright protected material.
  • Use relevant and describing topics.
  • Check if your post already been discussed.
  • Check your spelling!
  • DETAILED RULES
Add Images Add SmiliesPosting Help

Please check your spelling (press "Check Spelling" above)


Similar topics:More similar topics...
Champagne Across The Atlantic - BA 772 Club World posted Wed Aug 25 2010 12:04:34 by ClassicLover
Amazing Trip Across The Atlantic By A319 (Pics) posted Fri May 25 2007 00:05:09 by BMIFlyer
Across The Atlantic In A 757 posted Mon Aug 16 2004 22:53:29 by MYT332
Emirates First Class: 16 Hours On The 777-200LR posted Thu Feb 18 2010 15:22:25 by Globetraveller
Crossing The Atlantic On BA (Y): AMS-LGW-JFK posted Sun May 3 2009 02:20:33 by Airbuseric
Comparing NW And KL Over The Atlantic In C On A330 posted Thu Apr 30 2009 03:09:32 by HT
3 Hours On Blue1: HEL-MXP On The MD-90 (+pics) posted Sat Sep 27 2008 23:51:37 by PlaneHunter
20 Hours On The Way But I Made It Back posted Sun Dec 4 2005 20:31:48 by RIXrat
B757 Across The Pond! BOS-MAN-GLA On AA (26 Pix) posted Wed Jul 27 2005 17:54:46 by SNATH
Low-cost Across The Small Pond. FR NRN-STN STN-EIN posted Thu Jul 21 2011 04:44:37 by nipoel123
Champagne Across The Atlantic - BA 772 Club World posted Wed Aug 25 2010 12:04:34 by ClassicLover
Amazing Trip Across The Atlantic By A319 (Pics) posted Fri May 25 2007 00:05:09 by BMIFlyer
Across The Atlantic In A 757 posted Mon Aug 16 2004 22:53:29 by MYT332
Long-Haul Cabin On A 737: MUC-CAI On PrivatAir posted Tue Nov 29 2011 11:20:30 by PlaneHunter
Emirates First Class: 16 Hours On The 777-200LR posted Thu Feb 18 2010 15:22:25 by Globetraveller
Crossing The Atlantic On BA (Y): AMS-LGW-JFK posted Sun May 3 2009 02:20:33 by Airbuseric
Comparing NW And KL Over The Atlantic In C On A330 posted Thu Apr 30 2009 03:09:32 by HT
3 Hours On Blue1: HEL-MXP On The MD-90 (+pics) posted Sat Sep 27 2008 23:51:37 by PlaneHunter
20 Hours On The Way But I Made It Back posted Sun Dec 4 2005 20:31:48 by RIXrat

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format