Jshank83
Topic Author
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Turkish Airlines/IST question

Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:36 pm

I am taking a trip to Athens in the spring. My original plan was to fly to New York on one ticket then just take DL or Emirates nonstop from there.

The other option is fly STL-IAD-IST-ATH it adds a stop but at least I would be able to put it all on one ticket and wouldn't have to make sure I buffer flights. It is the only one that cost wise is in my options for a STL-ATH on one ticket.

The question is, what is everyone's opinion of Turkish Air. I have never flown them and know little about them. Is there any concern flying through IST these days? My only knowledge of it really is that it is a big hub but it had the incident last year with the gunman, so I didn't know if there are ongoing safety concerns or it was a one off thing.

I will probably end up doing the double ticket thing through NYC but I just wanted to see the prevailing thoughts on Turkish before I decide. Thanks in advance.
 
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WildcatYXU
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Wed Nov 22, 2017 9:17 pm

Jshank83 wrote:
I am taking a trip to Athens in the spring. My original plan was to fly to New York on one ticket then just take DL or Emirates nonstop from there.

The other option is fly STL-IAD-IST-ATH it adds a stop but at least I would be able to put it all on one ticket and wouldn't have to make sure I buffer flights. It is the only one that cost wise is in my options for a STL-ATH on one ticket.

The question is, what is everyone's opinion of Turkish Air. I have never flown them and know little about them. Is there any concern flying through IST these days? My only knowledge of it really is that it is a big hub but it had the incident last year with the gunman, so I didn't know if there are ongoing safety concerns or it was a one off thing.

I will probably end up doing the double ticket thing through NYC but I just wanted to see the prevailing thoughts on Turkish before I decide. Thanks in advance.


I flew TK last year and my only problem was that I was too sick to enjoy their service. They were great (flew in J)
IST, well, it's a bit of a zoo. Lots of people, sometimes may be difficult to find what you're looking for (the TK lounge in my case). But otherwise, no problems. I connected at IST few weeks after the attempted coup. I've seen much fewer armed officers than at FRA on the way there.
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Jshank83
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Wed Nov 22, 2017 9:44 pm

^Thanks for the reply. I will most likely be in coach no matter who I fly unless they have an economy plus that is reasonable for the east bound flight.

Another question kind of on topic. I have noticed some airlines (UA in this case) have for examplehave STL-EWR for $210 and EWR-ATH for $800 but STL-EWR-ATH for $1400. So buying EWR-ATH for $800 and STL-EWR for $210 separately is cheaper. If you call will they ever pair those tickets up for the single segment prices? Or do they force you to buy them separate if you want the lower price.

I get why they advertise them like they do though, because they can charge more to anyone who isn't paying attention.
 
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WildcatYXU
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:28 am

Well, TK's 18" seat in the 77W may feel like an E+ seat compared to others. And according to my friends that have flown TK in Y, their service in Y is great too.
As for the rest, they will not merge the tickets. Fares are based strictly on the market, so the airline won't give up any revenue. That said, if you really want to save money, you could consider to drive to ORD. It is a bit of a drive - about 300 miles, but the fare differences are staggering. I tried to price out a flight to ATH from STL and ORD on AC. Random dates in March. From STL it was $1299 US. From ORD it was $628. It is up to you if the two 4 hour drives are worth $671.
310, 319, 320, 321, 333, 343, 345, 346, 732, 735, 73G, 738, 744, 752, 762, 763, 77L, 77W, 788, AT4, AT7, BEH, CR2, CRA, CR9, DH1, DH3, DH4, E45, E75, E90, E95, F28, F50, F100, MD82, Saab 340, YAK40
 
Jshank83
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:04 pm

WildcatYXU wrote:
Well, TK's 18" seat in the 77W may feel like an E+ seat compared to others. And according to my friends that have flown TK in Y, their service in Y is great too.
As for the rest, they will not merge the tickets. Fares are based strictly on the market, so the airline won't give up any revenue. That said, if you really want to save money, you could consider to drive to ORD. It is a bit of a drive - about 300 miles, but the fare differences are staggering. I tried to price out a flight to ATH from STL and ORD on AC. Random dates in March. From STL it was $1299 US. From ORD it was $628. It is up to you if the two 4 hour drives are worth $671.


Thanks for the info!

I looked into going to ORD, I know a lot of people in STL that go that route when flying abroad. They either drive or take the train up. ORD doesn't have a nonstop so that is really the reason I am looking at New York. Toronto has a good price but flights to YYZ from STL are crazy expensive so that negates any cost saving on it. I have a companion pass on WN so that helps cut down on cost if I fly it to NYC (or Chicago for that matter) first. The only real issue with it is that I would have to change airports in Chicago or New York (if I fly out of JFK). EWR I could stay in the same airport, I would just have a long self made layover.
 
conaly
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:11 am

I was on TK quite a few times this year. On long range in eco, as well as in business. I was quite disappointed. As winner of the "best airline of Europe" award for so many years in a row I didn't see ANYTHING, what was any better than for example LH, AF or BA. The only advantage it their overly cheap prices, but this isn't a factor for me anymore. I gladly pay a bit more if I don't have to set a foot into IST. And I strongly advise you to NOT transfer via IST. The airport is mostly overcrowded as hell. Especially during holiday times you may have very very long queues and waiting times and quite often you don't have enough seats around a gate. Also very few plugs and the "free Wifi" is only 2 hours per week. During peak hours you can't even walk in a straight line as you ALWAYS have to evade some people sitting around anywhere at the airport.

There isn't any worse hub in Europe than IST.
 
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LostLuggage
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Fri Nov 24, 2017 10:45 am

While I agree that IST can be bedlam at times, as long as you don't end up with too long a layover there you will survive.

I flew PRG-IST-IAD return earlier this year in Y and it was definitely up there with the better Economy long-haul experiences I've had despite the backtracking route. They fly an A330 to IAD so the 2-4-2 layout means fewer people to climb over / be climbed over by. The IFE was brand new with lots to choose from, food was great, the seat as comfortable as you can ask for in Y. I've noticed cold cabins on all my TK flights, possibly my only gripe with their onboard experience. Plus the IAD-IST flight leaves at 11pm - great for getting some sleep if you can do so on planes.
 
Jshank83
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Sat Nov 25, 2017 3:20 am

TK is a legacy type, right? As in they don't make you pay for everything like a LCC/ULCC. We would be going in May probably. My wife wants to go so that Memorial Day (US holiday) is part of it to save a vacation day but we'll see. It is cheaper to go fly earlier in the month. I am also under the impression June starts busy season in Greece.
 
B747forever
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Sat Nov 25, 2017 11:29 am

Jshank83 wrote:
TK is a legacy type, right? As in they don't make you pay for everything like a LCC/ULCC. We would be going in May probably. My wife wants to go so that Memorial Day (US holiday) is part of it to save a vacation day but we'll see. It is cheaper to go fly earlier in the month. I am also under the impression June starts busy season in Greece.


Yes, TK is a full service carrier and is top notch in Y. Dont know what kind of bad experience the other member had with TK, but their Y product is way ahead of BA/AF/LH. Without a doubt, go ahead with TK. AFAIK they are the only major carrier that still have full catering with hot meals on intra European flights. Compare that to BA that charge even for water! While IST can be crowded at times, it is still easy to connect there.
Work Hard, Fly Right
 
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Kevinflyer
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Sat Nov 25, 2017 11:33 am

I've had pretty solid experiences with TK which I've flown a couple of times (granted that was business class). So I can't speak for their economy class product but I've heard good things there as well.

IST is a pretty hectic and aging airport and to add to it-i's incredibly difficult to get around since it's confusing, people lay in the middle of the corridors, and no one speaks English.

Security was very heavy too-both inside and outside of the airport.

That said things should improve in the long run as the Turkish Government is building a new, larger airport since 40 miles or so to the north of Ataturk. Which from my understanding is slated to start reciciving flights in less than a year. So hopefully things will improve.
 
directorguy
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Sat Nov 25, 2017 10:17 pm

April/May is the shoulder season-so good weather, but not that many crowds unless there is a domestic holiday in comparison to June onwards.
TK is a great airline. You mention that you will be traveling with your wife. Someone mentioned they put the A330 on the IAD IST run, so you can get a pair of seats together for the longest leg.
EK is also quite good, but they do nickel and dime you for seat selection fees etc. Plus their 77Ws which I believe they use on the EWR ATH route is not as good as their A380s.
I would personally opt for the 1 ticket option with TK as you are ensured and there are multiple rerouting options every step of the way should you misconnect. Self connecting at JFK or EWR would need at least 4-5 hours to be on the safe side.
 
Jshank83
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Sat Nov 25, 2017 10:27 pm

directorguy wrote:
April/May is the shoulder season-so good weather, but not that many crowds unless there is a domestic holiday in comparison to June onwards.
TK is a great airline. You mention that you will be traveling with your wife. Someone mentioned they put the A330 on the IAD IST run, so you can get a pair of seats together for the longest leg.
EK is also quite good, but they do nickel and dime you for seat selection fees etc. Plus their 77Ws which I believe they use on the EWR ATH route is not as good as their A380s.
I would personally opt for the 1 ticket option with TK as you are ensured and there are multiple rerouting options every step of the way should you misconnect. Self connecting at JFK or EWR would need at least 4-5 hours to be on the safe side.


Thanks for the info.

DL is the other option from New York they are on a 767 which also means we wouldn't have the 3rd seat and Economy+ is only an extra 100 USD so that I am looking at also. Price will probably play a big role in what we do. We can always go to New York earlier and stay with friends the night before. We'll see.
 
FriscoHeavy
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Sun Nov 26, 2017 6:39 pm

directorguy wrote:
April/May is the shoulder season-so good weather, but not that many crowds unless there is a domestic holiday in comparison to June onwards.
TK is a great airline. You mention that you will be traveling with your wife. Someone mentioned they put the A330 on the IAD IST run, so you can get a pair of seats together for the longest leg.
EK is also quite good, but they do nickel and dime you for seat selection fees etc. Plus their 77Ws which I believe they use on the EWR ATH route is not as good as their A380s.
I would personally opt for the 1 ticket option with TK as you are ensured and there are multiple rerouting options every step of the way should you misconnect. Self connecting at JFK or EWR would need at least 4-5 hours to be on the safe side.


1. Turkish doesn’t have A380’s.
2. The 777 of Turkish is comfortable and top notch.
Donald J Trump - MAGA
 
debonair
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Fri Dec 01, 2017 12:23 pm

As US citizen I would avoid transit in IST at all cost...

On November 7, 2017 the Government of Turkey announced the resumption of limited visa services. ... U.S. citizens cannot obtain new e-visas, and most airport visa options for U.S. citizens remain suspended.


https://travel.state.gov/content/passpo ... urkey.html

IF something happens (flight delay, cancellation, overbooking etc.) you have to stay in the transit area at the airport, as entry into Turkey for sightseeing or hotel accommodation might NOT be possible! Or you apply for a visa in first hand! :alert:
 
jumpjets
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Fri Dec 01, 2017 2:11 pm

I did a couple of return trips with TK in Y last year, both of which involved making connections in IST . Admittedly all sectors were short haul - the longest being LGW-IST. I found the inflight service to be superior to other European legacy carriers and the seats comfortable. The connections in IST were quick and easy to do. I'd certainly seriously consider them again especially when flying somewhere with no direct flights from my home area.
 
stlgph
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:12 pm

Turkish Airlines is amazing. It's everything British Airways ever wanted to be and has failed. If I could fly Turkish from NYC via Istanbul to get home to Chicago, I would. Their meals are great, they keep the snacks and the drinks coming, and in flight entertainment is usually pretty good. Clearly I have no problem flying them into IST and then backtracking the other direction to get to my final destination.

Yes, Istanbul is a zoo, but who cares. Turkish is pretty organized at what it does.
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stlgph
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Re: Turkish Airlines/IST question

Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:41 pm

Jshank83 wrote:
directorguy wrote:
April/May is the shoulder season-so good weather, but not that many crowds unless there is a domestic holiday in comparison to June onwards.
TK is a great airline. You mention that you will be traveling with your wife. Someone mentioned they put the A330 on the IAD IST run, so you can get a pair of seats together for the longest leg.
EK is also quite good, but they do nickel and dime you for seat selection fees etc. Plus their 77Ws which I believe they use on the EWR ATH route is not as good as their A380s.
I would personally opt for the 1 ticket option with TK as you are ensured and there are multiple rerouting options every step of the way should you misconnect. Self connecting at JFK or EWR would need at least 4-5 hours to be on the safe side.


Thanks for the info.

DL is the other option from New York they are on a 767 which also means we wouldn't have the 3rd seat and Economy+ is only an extra 100 USD so that I am looking at also. Price will probably play a big role in what we do. We can always go to New York earlier and stay with friends the night before. We'll see.


For what it's worth, Turkish flies the A333 out of IAD. It's 2-4-2.
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