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Oman Air Business Class_ Zurich To Dubai  
User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 22591 times:

I’m on the airport train. I’m heading for Zurich again. I’m off on a business trip to Dubai, where I will spend nearly a week. The last time I wrote about the train to the airport, I believe it was in April 2012 and I was heading to Zurich to catch a KLM flight to Amsterdam. I remember describing the countryside, the rolling hills and the low hanging clouds slowly wafting passed the landscape as they drenched the earth.

But today is very different. It’s nearly the end of June and the temperature has picked up, the clouds have subsided – finally. And something else is different. The light. My train departs Basel’s main station at 19h40 when the low evening light casts a lovely warm glow, brilliant shades of gold across the land.

Welcome to this trip report!

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/OmanAirLogo.jpg

Date: 22: June 2012
Departure: 22h30
Arrival: 06h00+
Airlines: Oman Air (WY)
Aircraft: Airbus A330-200
Cabin: Business
Seat: 10K, first row of Business Class, window


My 45th flight in 2012.

As usual, courtesy of the great circle mapper, here is the routing:

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/map.gif

‘Are there really no direct flights between Zurich and Dubai?’ I hear you ask. Of course there are. Swiss operates a daily A330-300. The last time I was on that flight, we had a ratio of one flight attendant to every passenger in First Class, we were only two passengers.

And then of course there’s Emirates, operating two daily flights to Zurich. Both of which I believe, are with a Boeing B777.

I chose Oman Air out of simple curiosity. That, and because I want to try their new Embraer E-175.

GETTING TO THE AIRPORT

Here are some pictures of the train journey to Zurich Airport. Everything is a lush green and so different from the landscapes I am heading for.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040760.jpg

Loads of leg space.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040761.jpg

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040762.jpg

I kinda like this shot...

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040763.jpg

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This here is the original castle Habsburg castle, from where they set out to become the most dominant political power of their day. It's near Brugg.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040768.jpg

A regional train in Brugg station.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040769.jpg

I arrive at Zurich Airport just before 21h00. The place is fairly quiet. I reach check-in and here too, there are not many people. There is one couple checking in at an Economy Class counter and another elderly couple checking in at the Business Class counter.

There is a thick, lush carpet before the check-in counter. As I arrive, an agent from DNATA, the handling agent, welcomes me to the flight and tags my luggage. Very friendly and polite.

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http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040771.jpg

THE LOUNGE

From there I head through security and then on to the DNAT lounge. The lounge is located one floor up, from the transit area, next to the Skyteam lounge. The offerings are more or less the same too, perhaps with the only difference is that the DNATA lounge is even smaller.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040772.jpg

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040774.jpg

DEPARTURE

My stay is a short one. The flight will be leaving from the E dock, like all the other long-haul flights, so I assume there will be a long queue at immigration. And indeed, when I arrive, there are six queue open and all of them look very busy. But I’m lucky and the queue of passengers moves quickly.

After passport control I head downstairs to catch the Skymetro to the E dock. A quick phone call to my mum later and I’m at my departure gate E46, where boarding for the flight has already started. Although there are two airbridges at the gate, only one is in use today. Even so, I do not have to queue and can go straight on board.

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My first glimpse of the bird carrying me to Muscat tonight.

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http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040784.jpg

Walking down the gangway to the exit.

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At the door I am welcomed by a friendly Asian female flight attendant and an oriental looking male. He takes my boarding pass and guides me to my seat in the first row of the cabin.

THE CABIN

The first impression of the cabin is very good. First of all I can’t but notice that the seat and stowage space are more like what many other airlines have on offer in First Class.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040788.jpg

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040789.jpg

The central bulkhead has two integrated small vitrines showcasing Omani craftsmanship and jewellery.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040790.jpg

SERVICE

I stow away my things and sit down. Nick, the cabin manager arrives and introduces herself. She brings me a scented refreshing towel and a glass of Elder juice. While we’re chatting, one of her colleagues arrives with the vanity kit and the drinks and food menus. The vanity kit is an opulent affair in gold colour. Inside there are the famous Amouage cosmetics, as well as the usual shaving kit, toothbrush and tooth past, a comb and socks.

A nice big whit pillow and a thick blanket are already at my seat.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040792.jpg

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THE FOOD

The experience begins shortly before the doors close, I am served a tasty, sweet date and a cup of Arabic coffee. A nice touch, me thinks!

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Departure is to the north and very calm. As soon as the fasten seatbelt sign goes off, the cabin crew start taking orders for dinner.

I ask for mineral water and receive a glass of San Pellegrino with warm nuts. Something tells me I’m going to enjoy this…

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Dining is à la carte and there is a rich and interesting selection to choose from.

First there is a vol-au-vent filled with a mousse of grilled aubergine, together with a shaving of Tête de Moine cheese and chives. ‘Tête de Moine’ literally translates into ‘Monk’s Head’. It’s a typically Swiss cheese. It gets its name from the fact that each serving is shaved off the top of the slab of cheese, making it look like the bald head of a monk.

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The set table.

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After that, I have the creamy spring vegetable soup with garlic croutons and fine herbs. And it is amazing. The taste is simply amazing, an interesting combination of pea and asparagus. The soup is served with a slice of lemon. The flight attendant explains the idea is to squeeze the lemon in the soup. It proves to be an excellent combination!

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040806.jpg

After the soup I have the tart of red pepper, goats cheese and caramelized onions with a balsamic reduction. This is served on a bed of fresh herbs: coriander, dill, estragon and mint. I am still in two minds if this or the main course was my favourite. The taste is simply outstanding and the pastry is not in the least soggy!

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040808.jpg

And then comes the main course: pan fried sea bass fillet with lemon-caper butter, braised Mediterranean vegetables and steamed rice with herbs. The lemon-caper butter in particular is exquisite. It is a finely balanced combination of ingredients that complement each other beautifully.

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http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040811.jpg

To finish off this outstanding meal, I attempt to tackle the home baked chocolate cake with whipped cream and fresh berries. It’s wicked, but the chocolate cake end up being invincible. After getting through half of it I must admit defeat and capitulate to its sweetness and richness. A battle I tremendously enjoy loosing.

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After this epic meal, the flight attendant brings me a pair of slippers and pjs. I head for the very clean loos to change. When I return to my seat, it has already been extended into a bed. Over and out!

My only grippe with this flight is really that it is too short for a good night’s sleep. You depart Zurich at 22h30 and arrive in Muscat at 06h30, which is two hours ahead of Zurich.

About 80 minutes before we arrive, I awake and immediately one of the attendants asks me if I’d like breakfast. I say yes, but in actual fact I am still full from dinner. I just have the fruit, a brioche, coffee and orange juice. It is worth pointing out that the milk for the coffee is warmed.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040814.jpg

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ARRIVAL

And then all too soon we land in Muscat.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040819.jpg

Descending through the heat haze.

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There is a separate coach bus ready to take the 14 Business Class to the terminal. There are no airbridges yet in Muscat, although construction of the new airport is already quite advanced. I think this will give me some excellent photo opportunities of my bird. But in actual fact I am too close to capture all of the mighty A330 in one shot.

Transfer in Muscat is an efficient and painless affair. The lounge is very full when I arrive. But a short while later, the Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Frankfurt flights are called and the place quickly empties.

Next stop: Dubai.

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37 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Reply 1, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 22572 times:

Date: 23: June 2012
Departure: 10h35
Arrival: 11h55
Airlines: Oman Air (WY)
Aircraft: Embraer 175
Cabin: Business
Seat: 2A, first row of Business Class, window


My 46th flight in 2012.

THE LOUNGE

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040849.jpg

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040850.jpg

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http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040848.jpg

By the time the lounge empties, I’m starting to feel hungry again. The food selection in the lounge is an absolute delight. As they say, when in Rome do as the Romans do. So I treat myself to an Arabic breakfast to revive the spirits. I have a hard time choosing from all the lovely dishes there are.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040834.jpg

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040835.jpg

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http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040846.jpg

DEPARTURE

After the meal I decide to leave the lounge and have a walk about around the terminal. There is a recent extension to the facility, which has had gates added. I has a modern feel to it, with an Arabic twist. And the effect is rather nice, with a reoccurring intricate mashrabiya theme.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040852.jpg

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On my way to my gate I stop at a shop selling Amouage perfume. It is one of the most expensive perfumes that exist todays. The young lady there strikes up a conversation with me. Out of curiosity I ask her which is the famous ‘original’ scent. Before I know it she grabs my arm and sprays some of the stuff on my wrist. The smell is, I must confess, quite exquisite. It smells expensive. It also gives me a headache straight away and I am somewhat alarmed when the young lady assures me that it lasts up to two weeks on the skin. As it turns out, that is perhaps a tad overstated.

I head downstairs to the ground level of the building extension, where the gates are.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040855.jpg

First all Economy Class passengers are boarded, again with a bus, while the Business Class passengers are boarded last using their own dedicated bus.

Again I’m too close for any decent pictures of the whole aircraft, even if it’s a little mini like the E-175.

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THE CABIN

The cabin of the aircraft seems new and has a dedicated and very spacious Business Class cabin in a 1 + 2 configuration. I am on 2A, the bulkhead row, which is on the row of single seats.

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/m627/Knightsofmalta/Dubai%202012/P1040859.jpg

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SERVICE

Service begins while we are still on the ground with the distribution of the very welcome and very refreshing cold towels. Right after this, the male cabin attendant makes a drinks round. I choose a glass of fresh lemonade with mint.

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Everything is cleared away as we start our taxi to the runway. The ramp is quite busy at this time of the day. We stop at the holding point for a company E-175 to make its arrival. I can’t help noticing just how dry it looks outside, a vast expanse of desert.

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THE FOOD

We take off in an Easterly direction. Shortly after departure we make a wide left 180 degree turn over a beautiful green blue sea. Our flight time is announced as 45 minutes. As soon as the fasten seatbelts sign is turned off, the cabin crew spring in to action. The cabin is full, with 12 passengers in Business Class. Even so, the cabin crew ask every passenger individually what they would like to eat and drink.

I order a Perrier and a coffee. A short while later, the cabin attendant returns with this. Quite impressive for such a short flight.

A mixed platter of (from left to right) pumpernickel with cheese, grilled apple, smoked salmon on a brioche filled with cream cheese, falafel with humus and garlic.

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Grilled peppers and olives drizzled in pesto and olive oil.

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And for dessert a slice of tasty carrot cake. The size of the meal is perfectly adequate for the duration of the flight and the quality of the food is excellent.

Just as I wash down the last of the carrot cake with the coffee, the fasten seatbelt sign comes on again and we start our approach to Dubai.

ARRIVAL

The approach is quite bumpy. It’s very hazy outside so I can’t really see anything much until we are only a few hundred metres above the ground.

Fortunately the airport is deserted at this time of the day, unlike the evenings when most of the European carriers arrive in the city. I make my way to immigration and there is close to no queue at all. The immigration officer is a friendly, chatty guy. He checks my visa and passport, and I’m good to go. I pass through customs and then from there head outside to grab a taxi. And I nearly keel over with the heat!

I will leave this report here and post the images of the return trip in a separate one. So what did I think of Oman Air? From what I understand, Oman Air does and always has run at a loss. To be honest, I'm really not surprised. Their product is outstanding in terms of hardware, the quality of the food and the friendliness of their crews. Basically they offer a First Class product at Business Class prices. Would I fly them again? Certainly! I just hope they will last long enough at Zurich for me to try them again.


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined exactly 11 years ago today! , 1946 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 22477 times:

Thanks for the wonderful trip report!

Oman Air is one of my favorite Middle Eastern airlines and the service is exquisite. Muscat airport is a bit lack luster but the Oman Air lounge is very nice. I agree with you that you are basically getting a first class ticket by paying heavily discounted business class price. I like the fact that two meals are served on this ZRH to Muscat flight, as Swiss offers only one hot meal on a similar length flight. It is nice to have a nice breakfast prior to landing in Muscat after an overnight flight.

But I wonder what first class will be like on Oman Air!

The short haul flight from Muscat to Dubai looks nice and the food looks wonderful. It is amazing that a proper meal can be served in a 45 minutes flight.

Thank for the report and I look forward to the return flight!

Carfield


User currently offlineIdeekay From Switzerland, joined Jun 2012, 213 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 21510 times:

Hi!

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
I chose Oman Air out of simple curiosity. That, and because I want to try their new Embraer E-175

I didn't knew that Oman Air was flying to ZRH  
Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):

My first glimpse of the bird carrying me to Muscat tonight.

Nice livery

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
While we’re chatting, one of her colleagues arrives with the vanity kit and the drinks and food menus.

This golden "bag" is a nice thing. Could you keep it with you?

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):

Cool,modern and arabic!

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
Again I’m too close for any decent pictures of the whole aircraft, even if it’s a little mini like the E-175.

Still the livery looks good on the Embraer, I think its looking good at all planes

I think I have a new airline on my "I want to fly in some time"-list. The service on Oman Air looks good and tasty.
The little flight on the Embraer also looks very luxurious, tasty food and confy seat.

All in all a nice experience!  
Looking forward for more TR's from you


User currently offlineFerminios From Canada, joined Apr 2011, 108 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 21404 times:

Beautiful trip report! It's great to see Oman Air being a top class airline. I look forward flying with them sometime this year - I've lived in Muscat in my childhood years and haven't been back since I left Oman in 2000. It's about time to go back. Muscat looks still so familliar. It's going to be an exciting experience!  
Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
Oman Air does and always has run at a loss

This is actually not the case. Until the Omani Goverment got out of GF around 2007 Oman Air was in fact mostly a private carrier, with the Omani Goverment only holding a minority stake. Oman Air had been profitable for years (it wasn't much each year, it was each time about 2-3 million RO, which is around 7.5 million USD at today's exchange rate) when they were completely nationalised. Since then, with all the upgrades and services and new equipment that have obviously taken it's toll on the margins. I read a while ago they do intend to return to profitabilty in 2015, I'm not sure if that has changed in the meantime with the current economic conditions.

Florian  


User currently offlineLAX888 From Singapore, joined Oct 2010, 279 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 21273 times:

Thanks for the report. I flew them in May to KUL from ZRH and their business class is really like first class on other airlines. The one crew in your picture was the same woman who served me on my flight  

I did find however that the Arabian crew were less hospitable than the Asian crew. Maybe just my perception on my four flights with them.

Hope you have a good return flight with them as well!

I do agree that the flights on Oman Air are usually too short to enjoy the nice seat/bed.


User currently offlinecastroprauxel From Germany, joined Sep 2008, 467 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 20840 times:

WOW. what an excellent product. I will definitely consider them on my next flight to BKK!

thanks for the great TR.


User currently offlineSR 103 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1740 posts, RR: 39
Reply 7, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 20650 times:

Thanks for a great trip report. I have been flying a lot of Oman Air myself as of late and can only agree with your comments. I have had quite a few of the same dishes you had on your set of flights and like you, I was very impressed. The crew are always at the top of their game on Oman Air and it shows.

Thanks again for a great report and reminding me why Oman Air is my favorite Middle Eastern carrier.


User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Reply 8, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 19705 times:

Hi Carfield

Quoting Carfield (Reply 2):
Thanks for the wonderful trip report!

Thanks, my pleasure.

Quoting Carfield (Reply 2):
Oman Air is one of my favorite Middle Eastern airlines and the service is exquisite.

I don't blame you!

Quoting Carfield (Reply 2):
Muscat airport is a bit lack luster but the Oman Air lounge is very nice.

That is bound to improve once the new facility opens.

Quoting Carfield (Reply 2):
But I wonder what first class will be like on Oman Air!

That's what I'd like to know. You pass the First lounge on your way to the Business one. But there wasn't much to see from the outside.

Hi Ideekay

Quoting Ideekay (Reply 3):
I didn't knew that Oman Air was flying to ZRH

A well kept secret. I think they started some time around November 2011.

Quoting Ideekay (Reply 3):
This golden "bag" is a nice thing. Could you keep it with you?

Yes, I took it for my collection. But it's rather inconvenient because it's so large. And a bit camp.

Quoting Ideekay (Reply 3):
I think I have a new airline on my "I want to fly in some time"-list. The service on Oman Air looks good and tasty.
The little flight on the Embraer also looks very luxurious, tasty food and confy seat.

Well, I would certainly recommend them!

Quoting Ideekay (Reply 3):
Looking forward for more TR's from you

I'm glad to hear that. Thanks for the encouragement.

Hi Ferminios

Quoting Ferminios (Reply 4):
Beautiful trip report!

Thank you!

Quoting Ferminios (Reply 4):
I look forward flying with them sometime this year - I've lived in Muscat in my childhood years and haven't been back since I left Oman in 2000. It's about time to go back. Muscat looks still so familliar. It's going to be an exciting experience!

I really like Muscat, I've been there three times now. If I'd had more time I would have stopped over for a few days.

Quoting Ferminios (Reply 4):
This is actually not the case. Until the Omani Goverment got out of GF around 2007 Oman Air was in fact mostly a private carrier, with the Omani Goverment only holding a minority stake. Oman Air had been profitable for years (it wasn't much each year, it was each time about 2-3 million RO, which is around 7.5 million USD at today's exchange rate) when they were completely nationalised. Since then, with all the upgrades and services and new equipment that have obviously taken it's toll on the margins. I read a while ago they do intend to return to profitabilty in 2015, I'm not sure if that has changed in the meantime with the current economic conditions.

Thanks for the clarification. But fair enough, if you want to make money, you must first be willing to spend money. I hope the stick around for a while. They're brilliant!

Hi LAX888

Quoting LAX888 (Reply 5):
Thanks for the report.

My pleasure.

Quoting LAX888 (Reply 5):
The one crew in your picture was the same woman who served me on my flight

Wow, what a coincidence. Then again, Oman Air is not Emirates - yet!

Quoting LAX888 (Reply 5):
I did find however that the Arabian crew were less hospitable than the Asian crew. Maybe just my perception on my four flights with them.

I did not notice that actually. The purser on the return leg was an Arab man and he was very forthcoming and helpful. He introduced himself personally to every passenger, which is always a nice touch.

Hi castroprauxel

Quoting castroprauxel (Reply 6):
WOW. what an excellent product. I will definitely consider them on my next flight to BKK!

Definitely. I think the only down side is really that they're halfway between Europe and Asia. As a result, the flight to MCT is usually around 6 hours and so is the onward flight. As a result, you don't get much of a chance to sleep. But other than that, I can certainly recommend them.

Hi SR103

Quoting SR 103 (Reply 7):
Thanks for a great trip report.

My pleasure.

Quoting SR 103 (Reply 7):
I have been flying a lot of Oman Air myself as of late and can only agree with your comments.

Of course this then raises the question as to where the trip report is?  
Quoting SR 103 (Reply 7):
Thanks again for a great report and reminding me why Oman Air is my favorite Middle Eastern carrier.

I feel inclined to agree with you on that. They're definitely much better than Emirates!

Thanks to all for taking the time to comment!

Cheers,
William


User currently offlinecastroprauxel From Germany, joined Sep 2008, 467 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 19140 times:

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 8):
I think the only down side is really that they're halfway between Europe and Asia

...and that's why I prefer the middle east carriers. I find it perfect, when the route to Asia is cut in halves. even in the most comfortable business class I never sleep more than a couple of hours, so I will take 6+6 hours over 11 hours direct anyday.


User currently offlinestipica From Croatia, joined Feb 2011, 427 posts, RR: 8
Reply 10, posted (2 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 19080 times:

Hi W !
mirage is here hhehhehehe ... so interesting company like the country ... certainly the most interesting in the Gulf for me ... I didn't knew they were acquired my favorite "brasileiro" ... nice matching interior with big EU brother ... did you notice progress of new airport ? ... the food looks fantastic and much better that Etihad offers only missing the fine champagne ... without other alcohol I can ... you really know how to indulge yourself ... and partly us ... thanks stipica  



Open your eyes and think
User currently offlinesultanils From Belgium, joined Mar 2010, 1788 posts, RR: 30
Reply 11, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 18597 times:

Hello William,

Thanks for this excellent piece on the niche carrier that is Oman Air. Reports on this carrier are pretty scarce, but the ones that do show up are all raving. Yours is no different. You sum it up pretty good: they offer First for the price of Business. I do hope however they will not go under when you say their financial state isn’t the best.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
This here is the original castle Habsburg castle, from where they set out to become the most dominant political power of their day

Great! I have a soft spot for castles, a thing from my childhood  

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
The central bulkhead has two integrated small vitrines showcasing Omani craftsmanship and jewellery.

How exquisite!

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
As it turns out, that is perhaps a tad overstated.

Ha ha, it probably is.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
First all Economy Class passengers are boarded, again with a bus, while the Business Class passengers are boarded last using their own dedicated bus.

So they board in the opposite way as is customary? Interesting.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
The cabin is full, with 12 passengers in Business Class. Even so, the cabin crew ask every passenger individually what they would like to eat and drink.

Sure a full business class on this kind of routes must make some money? And great to see the personal service which is impressive on such a short sector.

Sultanils



In thrust we trust.
User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Reply 12, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 18135 times:

Hi castroprauxel

Quoting castroprauxel (Reply 9):
...and that's why I prefer the middle east carriers. I find it perfect, when the route to Asia is cut in halves. even in the most comfortable business class I never sleep more than a couple of hours, so I will take 6+6 hours over 11 hours direct anyday.

Fair enough, you have a point there. Fortunately though I'm lucky in that I can sleep easily on all transport modes. Must be a sign of old age creeping up on me.

Hi stipica

Just when you thought you'd caught up...!

Quoting stipica (Reply 10):
so interesting company like the country ...

How right you are. Oman is simply an amazing country and the people are so respectful and dignified in the way they treat each other and foreigners.

Quoting stipica (Reply 10):
I didn't knew they were acquired my favorite "brasileiro" ...

They're a very understated airline. You don't hear much of them but they are working very hard.

Quoting stipica (Reply 10):
did you notice progress of new airport ? ...

Construction is already quite advanced. You can already make out the shape of the terminal and from the air you can see where the runway and taxiways will be.

Quoting stipica (Reply 10):
you really know how to indulge yourself ... and partly us ...

Well, no harm in trying is there!


Hi Nils

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Thanks for this excellent piece on the niche carrier that is Oman Air.

My pleasure for sure!

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Great! I have a soft spot for castles, a thing from my childhood

You'd love Habsburg castle. It's still very well preserved.

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
So they board in the opposite way as is customary? Interesting.

Yes, they take good care of their passengers, even on the ground.

Quoting sultanils (Reply 11):
Sure a full business class on this kind of routes must make some money?

I'm not so sure. Emirates operates to MCT with the A330 so they have a certain scale effect Oman Air lacks with the Embraer.

Thanks for taking the time to comment, guys. Much appreciated.

Cheers,
William


User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6938 posts, RR: 77
Reply 13, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 17681 times:

Hi William,

nice report about your WY experience. The J Class product definitely beats other airlines's F Class offerings. The Y Class product is excellent, too, I was really impressed when I flew MUC-MCT-DXB in early 2011. Oman Air belongs to my favorite carriers.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
‘Are there really no direct flights between Zurich and Dubai?’ I hear you ask.

Most people here don't prefer direct flights!  

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
From what I understand, Oman Air does and always has run at a loss.

That's not surprising, I don't think anyone of those starting the airline have expected anything else for a long time. It's a state-owned carrier built up in order to support the country's growth and development.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
I just hope they will last long enough at Zurich for me to try them again.

Sure they will - Oman is rich in oil, gas and mineral resources, the country won't get rid of its nice boutique airline again.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 8):
I think the only down side is really that they're halfway between Europe and Asia.

But that's one reason why the ME carriers are so popular.


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlinelukeyboy95 From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2008, 1130 posts, RR: 32
Reply 14, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 17606 times:

Hi William.

I think Oman is the one we're all quite eager to try out - so well done more making the choice.

It doesn't seem OTT opulent that some Gulf Carriers seems to favor (and in doing so become a little tasteless.


Quoting Knightsofmalta (Thread starter):
Everything is a lush green and so different from the landscapes I am heading for.

How nice! I miss the climate so much. Living out here makes me crave the rain and lush landscape of Europe.

Many thanks, and well done for holding off the booze - you must have been straight into work...

Luke!



Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Reply 15, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 16795 times:

Hi Planehunter

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 13):
nice report about your WY experience.

Thank you.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 13):
Oman Air belongs to my favorite carriers.

I think I would tend to agree with you on that actually. To be honest I don't much like Emirates and Qatar is okay, I guess.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 13):
Most people here don't prefer direct flights!

Funny you should say that, I noticed that too recently... Incidentally, when can we expect your next trip report if I may ask?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 13):
It's a state-owned carrier built up in order to support the country's growth and development.

Sounds like Air Malta but without the European Commission putting on the pressure!

Hi Luke

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 14):
I think Oman is the one we're all quite eager to try out - so well done more making the choice.

Well thank you.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 14):
It doesn't seem OTT opulent that some Gulf Carriers seems to favor (and in doing so become a little tasteless.

That's precisely what I like about Oman Air. The Emirates faux gold First Class fittings are so in your face. Oman Air is obviously aiming for a far more understated outfit.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 14):
How nice! I miss the climate so much. Living out here makes me crave the rain and lush landscape of Europe.

I can imagine! That was the first thing that impressed me when we moved from Malta to Switzerland: the seasons and the changes during the course even only of one day.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 14):
Many thanks

My pleasure!

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 14):
and well done for holding off the booze - you must have been straight into work...

Actually it's more that alcohol at altitude often gives me a headache. As it turned out I still got the headache when that woman sprayed me with that strong perfume.

Anyway, Planehunter, Luke, thanks for taking the time to comment.

Cheers,
William


User currently offlinenethkt From Thailand, joined Apr 2001, 1093 posts, RR: 3
Reply 16, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 16340 times:

Thank you for your always amazing trip reports, a big secret admirer over here in Phuket, Thailand.

Oman Air products in the upper classes are just amazing. They really want to be a step up of all the carriers.

Sad to see them at a loss, but well, middle eastern airlines don't care! They can earn so much money from something else.

They always offer good fares from BKK to Europe, the problem is the mid way connection.
At that point your are either just fall into the sleep or in deep sleep mode, but you have to wake up and make the whole connecting process, and it requires a walk up and down in the desert! Not fun for non-airplane/airport-geek passengers.

Enjoy reading as usual and can't wait for my trip to Basel and surroundings in OCT!!  
Cheers,
Net-hkt



Let's just blame it on yields.
User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Reply 17, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 15994 times:

Hi Nethkt

Quoting nethkt (Reply 16):
Thank you for your always amazing trip reports, a big secret admirer over here in Phuket, Thailand.

Thank you, that's very nice of you to say.

Quoting nethkt (Reply 16):
At that point your are either just fall into the sleep or in deep sleep mode, but you have to wake up and make the whole connecting process, and it requires a walk up and down in the desert! Not fun for non-airplane/airport-geek passengers.

That's precisely it. But as Castroprauxel pointed out, the advantage with that is that it does kind of break the journey half way. And a stopover in Muscat is not to be turned down either!

Quoting nethkt (Reply 16):
Enjoy reading as usual and can't wait for my trip to Basel and surroundings in OCT!!

Well in that case I'll look forward to reading your trip report. Always good to read about your own city at it is seen through the eyes of a stranger to the place!

Thanks for taking the time to comment, Nethkt.

Cheers,
William


User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 16
Reply 18, posted (2 years 5 months 2 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 15119 times:

Hi William

Great report, thanks for sharing.
Now we see why Oman Air is truly a 5-star carrier.
As well the longhaul as the shorthaul is top notch here.

Greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Reply 19, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 14829 times:

Hi Marc

Good to hear from you.

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 18):
Great report, thanks for sharing.

Thank you, my pleasure!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 18):
Now we see why Oman Air is truly a 5-star carrier.

Yes, definitely a well deserved rating both in terms of software and hardware.

Thanks for taking the time to comment!

Cheers,
William


User currently offlineraptor72 From Switzerland, joined May 2004, 49 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 14532 times:

Hi William
nice, mouthwatering report, thx a lot! Tried WY last year to the Maldives and was very impressed by their cabin product and catering (so much, that we choosed WY again for our upcoming trip to MLE in about 10 days    ). Unfortunately, they changed the equipment on the MCT-MLE-MCT leg from 330 to 738.

As other fast growing airlines from the Gulf , their cabin crew quality varies a lot and is depending on personal motivation. We had Champagne to start the second leg of our flight, and this champagne had a strong cork taint, so we asked the FA if she could open a new one, but she refused by saying, this is normal (which wasn't, as the one out of FRA was simply perfect). Well, even if she's right, you don't give such an answer in that way. But to be honest, had also experienced "nasty witches" on other 5*-Airlines and for the price you pay with WY, you accept some "bumps". At least I will for an all C-trip to the Maldives for about 2000€ .

Their lounge in MCT is really perfect. Looking forward to try out the new spa.

Cheers,
Oliver


User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Reply 21, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 14432 times:

Hi Raptor72

Quoting raptor72 (Reply 20):
nice, mouthwatering report, thx a lot!

Thank you, my pleasure. It's good to meet a fellow Oman Air admirer from Switzerland.

Quoting raptor72 (Reply 20):
(so much, that we choosed WY again for our upcoming trip to MLE in about 10 days ).

And I must confess I'm green with envy. Not just because of Oman Air!

Quoting raptor72 (Reply 20):
Unfortunately, they changed the equipment on the MCT-MLE-MCT leg from 330 to 738.

I dunno, that's not too bad. Their B737 are rather funky in Business Class. How long is the flight?

Quoting raptor72 (Reply 20):
But to be honest, had also experienced "nasty witches" on other 5*-Airlines and for the price you pay with WY, you accept some "bumps". At least I will for an all C-trip to the Maldives for about 2000€ .

I would tend to agree. Very often it's really the service that makes or breaks the passenger experience. And I bet even the famous, award winning Malaysia Airlines cabin crew have a bad hair day every once in a while. And as you say. for the fares Oman Air charges, one really can't complain.

In any case, I hope you enjoy your vacation, the Maldives, Oman Air and the Spa. Might we look forward to reading about your experience in a trip report some day?

And thanks for taking the time to comment.

Cheers,
William


User currently offlineraptor72 From Switzerland, joined May 2004, 49 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 14395 times:

Hi William

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 21):
I dunno, that's not too bad. Their B737 are rather funky in Business Class. How long is the flight?

Well, the trip is about 4h each way, so no big deal. But last years metal was A332, and if you can choose between the bed or a regional C-Seat, the choice is clear. And referring to other TR, the C-Seat on the 738 is not the same as you had on the E-175 wich ar A330-style in colours.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 21):
Might we look forward to reading about your experience in a trip report some day?

Well, shame on me, I should post several trips from last year (FRA-DBX-MRU in F and C with EK, FRA-MCT-MLE in C with WY and FRA-BKK-HKT in F and C with TG). But started a school and short in free time. I know, just excuses   if one can fly F or C, he can at least spend some time and write a damn TR... I'll do, I promis!

Cheers,
Oliver


User currently offlineLH4116 From Sweden, joined Aug 2007, 1715 posts, RR: 18
Reply 23, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 14273 times:

Hey William, great report!

It's not very often we get to see reports of this excuisite boutique Gulf carrier, and I must say they looked really impressive!

Business Class both in terms of hard and soft product seems to be more or less in par with what the industry offer in First Class. How were the biz fares in comparison to the competition e.g LX and EK?

For such a relatively short flight I'm surprised to see such an extensive meal service. How were the breakfast offerings btw, did they offer a full hot breakfast?

The E175 was indeed a rare and exotic catch. Never really pictured any gulf airline operating any plane smaller than an A330, LOL. Business Class looked nice and sufficient enough for such a short flight, and once again I'm just amazed by the presentation of the meal!

"Wheels Up!"
//Jonas



SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
User currently offlineKnightsofmalta From Malta, joined Nov 2005, 1843 posts, RR: 19
Reply 24, posted (2 years 5 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 13906 times:

Hi raptor72

Quoting raptor72 (Reply 22):
Well, the trip is about 4h each way, so no big deal. But last years metal was A332, and if you can choose between the bed or a regional C-Seat, the choice is clear. And referring to other TR, the C-Seat on the 738 is not the same as you had on the E-175 wich ar A330-style in colours.

Well fair enough I guess. You're right, the B737s have these large leather seats. I think the interior design has not been upgraded to the new corporate ID at all. But they're very comfy.

Quoting raptor72 (Reply 22):
I'll do, I promis!

I didn't mean to give you a guilty conscience, it would just be nice...


Hi Jonas

How've you been lately?

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 23):
great report!

Thank you!

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 23):
How were the biz fares in comparison to the competition e.g LX and EK?

I didn't check Emirates because I had no intention of flying with them. But the SWISS fare was 1500 Swiss Francs more.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 23):
For such a relatively short flight I'm surprised to see such an extensive meal service. How were the breakfast offerings btw, did they offer a full hot breakfast?

That was precisely the problem. The breakfast was another full meal. But with such a short flight time (ca. 6 hours), by the time breakfast came round I was still digesting dinner.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 23):
The E175 was indeed a rare and exotic catch. Never really pictured any gulf airline operating any plane smaller than an A330, LOL. Business Class looked nice and sufficient enough for such a short flight, and once again I'm just amazed by the presentation of the meal!

Actually it's rather funny. Those Embraers really stick out, especially in Dubai. You've got B777s coming at you from all directions and then somewhere in between that cute little Brazilian appears.

Oliver, Jonas, thanks for commenting!

Cheers,
William


25 vincewy : William: Many thanks for providing this TR, I just booked DXB-BKK (to heck with FFP on TK) as part of my trip and I was ready to write a TR myself, we
26 deltamartin : Hi William! Great report, I really enjoyed it! From what I had heard before reading this report, their Business class is extremely good, at least when
27 adamspotter : Hi William, Another great report as usual. I hear only good things about Oman Air and this report proves it even more. Great service and the food look
28 abrelosojos : What an incredible report. I have been impressed lately by all the little things Oman Air has been doing and your report seems to be in a list of repo
29 Knightsofmalta : Hi Vincewy My pleasure. Hey, don't let us stop you! Indeed, their prices really are quite amazing. But I just can't imagine them actually making any m
30 ba319-131 : Great report and pictures, thanks for sharing. Oman Air are truly a class act, were BA tier points not in need to topping up, Oman Air would be my car
31 vincewy : shh.... WY is one of the best kept secrets, true, between Europe and Bangkok, UL and MS usually offer lowest J class fares, then WY and RJ, but we're
32 gabrielchew : Good report William - I'd love to try Oman Air, they look very polished. Food looks great too, especially that danish for breakfast! I wonder if this
33 Knightsofmalta : Hi Mark Thanks, my pleasure! Oh well, hopefully Oman Air will be around for many more years to come. Alternatively, how about joining the Oman Air Sin
34 vincewy : My main issue with Sindbad Miles is how long the Silver and Gold statuses are valid, one year? You can't earn miles with other carriers other than EY
35 Knightsofmalta : Hi Vincewy I see your point, put the two year requalification is quite rare these days. I know Lufthansa and Turkish Airlines have. But for example wi
36 Post contains images infodesk : Hi William, Good to read another one of your great reports. Oman Air looks to have really spoilt you. The livery is lovely and the food looks absolute
37 Knightsofmalta : Hi Hannah Thank you, that's very nice of you to say. The food really was excellent. What impressed me was also the quality of it. As for the lounge, I
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