Guten Abend aus Frankfurt! Yesterday I shared a teaser of the Iberia flight I took from New York to Madrid, in their new business class. After spending several hours in Madrid, it was time to connect to Frankfurt. But rather than taking the next available flight, I waited for LAN Chile’s afternoon flight, which is operated by a 787.
LAN Chile has a flight from Santiago to Madrid, and then they offer a connecting “tag” flight from Madrid to Frankfurt. There are many “fifth freedom” routes out there, though they’re somewhat limited in Europe. Off the top of my head I can think of Singapore Airlines’ Munich to Manchester flight, Air China’s Athens to Munich flight, Garuda’s Amsterdam to London flight (which will soon be discontinued), and this LAN flight.
What makes it so special? Intra-Europe business class typically consists of an economy seat with a blocked middle, along with improved service and food. So it’s really quite underwhelming. For example, I’d take first class on a US carrier with no food over intra-Europe business class any day.
So it’s such a treat when you get a flat bed and almost unlimited space on a quick two hour flight within Europe, especially given what the alternatives are.
Beyond that, there’s something I love about fifth freedom routes in general. You get a bit of third country “flair” on a flight between two other countries (admittedly Chile and Spain aren’t as much of a contrast as some other fifth freedom contrasts out there, but still).
The report from this trip will be published starting next week, so in the meantime here’s a teaser with 10 pictures.
PS: Stay tuned, because next up is Oman Air! You’re gonna want to read that.
PPS: Not sure what I was thinking planning back-to-back redeyes, especially on fairly short flights where I didn’t really have enough time to sleep. Oops!