Here is my second trip report regarding another European airline that I have always curious about, and I finally got fly baboo, a boutique airline based in Geneva, and conveniently had a thrice-weekly flight between Valencia and Geneva. Baboo is a very stylized airline with excellent motif and represents everything the Swiss is proud of.
July 24, 2010
Baboo (F7) 352 Valencia to Geneva Lv1000 Arr1150 EMB-190LR HB-JQF “Baboo Spirit”
I arrived on the new seasonal Delta Air Lines flight from JFK to Valencia, and without any baggage, I was out of custom within ten minutes. I had plenty of time to wait before the check-in counters opened for Baboo. Only one counter was allocated, and check-in opened at 8am. I bought a premium economy ticket because when I book the ticket, it was actually cheaper to book premium economy, but there was obviously no priority check-in counter, but lounge access to the Salon VIP was provided. Check-in was reasonably quick and check-in bag was checked.
Salon VIP was a nice lounge located next Gate A1/2 and there was free wifi but had to ask for password in counters, and a good snack collection including chips, sweets and sandwiches, as well as beverage selection. The lounge was not crowded at all so it was reasonably comfortable and a nice cool place to chill, especially a/c is definitely lacking at this airport.
Our aircraft was parked at a remote spot, “19,” and we had to take a bus out to the remote apron. Boarding began at 9:35am and after three bus loads, door was closed on time at 10:01am. Economy was full, but Premium economy was half full. Not much different in terms of service, but you get more legroom and priority on being served first. Evian bottled waters were passed out to everyone after door was closed, which were quite impressive. However, we just sat in the remote spot for thirty minutes with little information from the flight deck, but at the end, the pilot informed us that there were some ATC delays. Finally at 10:33am, we headed towards R/W30, and took off at 10:38am. Flying time was an hour and thirty-seven minutes.
Two really young and stylish Swiss girls handed the cabin service, and the service began with beverages, which was limited to wines, apple juice, coke, tea and coffee, and the smoothie publicized on its website for premium economy passengers were nowhere to be found. At least up front, we got a real glass for the cold drink service. For hot drinks, paper cups were used. Then there was a passing of a pastry tray, which had a choice of lemon cake or salty olive bread roll. Tea and coffee were offered next, followed by the famous oshibori/refresher towel service and Swiss chocolate. Trolley was used in economy cabin, but trays were used in premium economy cabin. The F/As were more than happy to get more drinks for you. The seats are very nice and I really like Embraer EMB-190 cabin with the large sized window and high ceiling. This aircraft is obviously an ex-Jetblue one, as PTVs and other Jetblue type motif can be found, but the seats itself are Baboo specific with leather seats and seat cover featuring the motifs. Premium got a different headrest cover.
Descent soon began at 11:35am and we landed at R/W5 at 12:15pm and parked at gate D23 four minutes later. This aircraft would continue onto Athens as F7 711.
I really enjoy this boutique airline, despite certain promises featured in the website not being fulfilled. There should be more passing of the pastries and perhaps a bit more substantial snack especially for premium economy passengers. The refresher towel and chocolate service was nice. It is definitely an interesting experience.