Ratypus
Topic Author
Posts: 185
Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2004 8:26 pm

KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:13 pm

Booked some flights over the weekend - to China in February - outwards from London to Shanghai, back from Beijing to London. In Y for a looong flight....

Figured would rather have money to spend when I get there than drop it all on an expensive flight...so BA and Virgin at £700 were out - turned out the cheapest option was KLM, changing in Schipol.

Advantages: fly from v convenient London City, cheap flight price, good transfer timings, chance to see the Rijksmuseum mini-display at Schipol!!

Disadvantages: not a direct flight....possible grim Y class on KLM....

So can anyone tell me: how grim are KLM long-haul....? Its their B747, not one of the new 777 or Airbus - what's the service like? I know they have no PTVs but not too bothered about that. Is the rest of it ok, assuming I'm fairly battle-haredened....e.g. thought Iberia from Lima were OK, which a lot of people seem to dislike a lot... (!)

What is the transfer like in Schipol - is it well-organised (I've heard it is)....will I have a bit of time to chill out if my time between the LCY arrival and the SHA departure is 2 hours?

Any further tips?

Thanks a lot
 
felixZRH
Posts: 185
Joined: Tue May 10, 2005 9:43 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 12:35 pm

I flew last year ZRH-AMS-PEK and PVG-AMS-ZRH (and met my brother in AMS).
For Y was ok. An easy flight, food ok, screens under the ceiling, easy connection in AMS.
So nothing special but a good way to get to China and spend your RMB there.
We also choose the price for the cost and for the possibility of meeting my brother who lives near LYS. And we don't have any direct flights from ZRH so we had to connect somewhere in Europe anyway (LX starts PVG in spring).

Have a good trip
Felix
 
swiftski
Posts: 1837
Joined: Tue Dec 19, 2006 6:19 am

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 1:35 pm

FWIW you will sometimes get a Combi to China ex AMS
 
JRadier
Posts: 3952
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 11:36 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:35 pm



Quoting Swiftski (Reply 2):
FWIW you will sometimes get a Combi to China ex AMS

As far as I know no full-pax 747-400s are used on routes to China so you will get a combi
 
Ratypus
Topic Author
Posts: 185
Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2004 8:26 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 2:40 pm

So what's the difference with the Combis? Aren't they quite old (and due to be retired soon?)....sounds like fun....
 
sk601
Posts: 897
Joined: Sat Jun 11, 2005 11:46 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 4:25 pm



Quoting Ratypus (Reply 4):
So what's the difference with the Combis?

You will not notice much difference. The combi seating is up to row 44, whereas full pax will go up to row 66. Seatpitch is equal, (just) 31", same as BA and LH, but AF, AC, SK and most Asian carriers offer more.

KLM doesnot have ptv's in m-class. Catering is....well, airline food. I've had good KL m-class meals, but also really disgusting food. The FA's are usually very nice. Flights to China also have Chinese cabin crew.

I am more concerned about your LCY-AMS flight. This flight is operated with a F50 and KLM Cityhopper is not known for thier on-time performance! KL has many daily LCY-AMS flights, it may be wise to arrive at the airport early, so you can catch an earlier flight to AMS - space permitting. OTH if you're booked on KL893 from AMS and you miss the flight due to late arrival from LCY, you might be lucky that there is a seat on the KL895 to PVG, which will depart only a few hours later (but not operating daily!).

Quoting Ratypus (Thread starter):
What is the transfer like in Schipol - is it well-organised

You will most likely arrive at the D-pier (regular gate or at the busstation near D05) and the PVG flights usually depart from the E or F gates. Walking time from D to E is appr. 10 min and from D to F appr. 15 minutes. While walking from one gate to the other you will pass many shops and restaurants. The Rijksmuseum is located between gates E and F.

Enjoy your flight!
 Cool  airplane 
 
ZL
Posts: 37
Joined: Mon Aug 06, 2007 7:37 am

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 5:15 pm

If missed 893, IIRC there's a later flight to PEK on CZ. So shouldn't be too much problem. 10-abreast 777, though.
 
PHKLM
Posts: 788
Joined: Mon Dec 26, 2005 7:28 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 5:19 pm



Quoting SK601 (Reply 5):
This flight is operated with a F50 and KLM Cityhopper is not known for thier on-time performance!

True, but KLM finally acknowledges this, partly because of this the E190's are entering the fleet in about a year from now to replace the most unreliable F100's.
 
kappel
Posts: 1836
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2005 6:48 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 8:27 pm



Quoting ZL (Reply 6):
10-abreast 777, though.

Don't they have about 33" pitch? That would compensate the 10-abreast. How's their service?
L1011,733,734,73G,738,743,744,752,763,772,77W,DC855,DC863,DC930,DC950,MD11,MD88,306,319,320,321,343,346,ARJ85,CR7,E195
 
kiwiandrew

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 8:34 pm

just flew BRU-AMS-PVG on KL a couple of weeks ago and HKG-AMS-BRU last Sunday - they were a lot better than I expected

downsides

No PTVs

tight seat pitch , not sure how the Dutch manage , you would need to fold the average Dutch person in half to fit into a KL y class seat

the movies kept interrupting the map - I would far rather watch the map anyday , particularly because the movies offered were frankly crap


upsides

very nice crews - real people rather than the robots that some airlines employ

ridiculous servings of spirits - I always thought LH G&Ts were lethal but KL are even sillier ( and I mean that in a good way )

will get round to a trip report one day
 
swiftski
Posts: 1837
Joined: Tue Dec 19, 2006 6:19 am

RE: KLM To China?

Mon Dec 03, 2007 9:18 pm



Quoting JRadier (Reply 3):
As far as I know no full-pax 747-400s are used on routes to China so you will get a combi

Could well be; I've only seen the combi @ PVG but didn't want to go all out with my statement when I wasn't sure.
 
Viscount724
Posts: 19316
Joined: Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:32 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Tue Dec 04, 2007 3:01 am



Quoting SK601 (Reply 5):
This flight is operated with a F50 and KLM Cityhopper is not known for thier on-time performance!

I was on 4 KL City Hopper F100s last week with a connection at AMS both ways and all flights were on time or early. They all seemed to be in very good condition.
 
Asiaflyer
Posts: 894
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:50 am

RE: KLM To China?

Tue Dec 04, 2007 5:55 am



Quoting Ratypus (Thread starter):
Any further tips?

The best seats are 9 B,C and 11 D,E on their 744s. Try to get any of them if you can.
 
larspl
Posts: 351
Joined: Fri Apr 05, 2002 4:06 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:06 am

KLC is doing better and better on ontime performance.
the last week of november they even had a 100% arrival punctuality on day.
extra money, work and energy is going into maintenance. i wouldn't worry to much about lcy-ams
facebook.com/ddaclassicairlines
 
keno
Posts: 1809
Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2004 5:46 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:11 am



Quoting Ratypus (Thread starter):
chance to see the Rijksmuseum mini-display at Schipol!!

I would call it microscopic-display  Smile. The gift shop seems a lot bigger than the gallery.
 
Ratypus
Topic Author
Posts: 185
Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2004 8:26 pm

RE: KLM To China?

Tue Dec 04, 2007 9:34 am

Thanks for your thoughts all - seems all is looking ok. Just booked the KLM and then heard that apparently their Y was a bit dodgy....but seems its ok, especially as I'm not too attached to PTVs and other luxuries(!)...and apparently they have "ridiculous servings of spirits": since I'll be fine to fit the seat and always listen to my own music on long flights anyway, I think this is all that will be required!!

"The best seats are 9 B,C and 11 D,E on their 744s. Try to get any of them if you can." - just the kind of specific info you can rely on this board for....thanks!  Smile

Thanks all - China here we come.
 
kl911
Posts: 3981
Joined: Mon Jul 21, 2003 1:10 am

RE: KLM To China?

Tue Dec 04, 2007 11:08 am



Quoting Ratypus (Reply 15):
"The best seats are 9 B,C and 11 D,E on their 744s. Try to get any of them if you can." - just the kind of specific info you can rely on this board for....thanks!

Well......there is always http://www.seatguru.com/airlines/KLM/KLM_Boeing_747-400_combi.php  Smile


KL911

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