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YOUTUBE: United Airlines: Washington DC to Zurich
YOUTUBE: SWISS International Airlines: Zurich to Delhi
YOUTUBE: Air India: Delhi to Pune
YOUTUBE: Akasa Air: Pune to Bangalore
YOUTUBE: Indigo Air: Bangalore to Pune
YOUTUBE: Singapore Airlines: Mumbai to Singapore
YOUTUBE: Singapore Airlines: Singapore to Frankfurt
YOUTUBE: Singapore Airlines: Frankfurt to New York JFK
After spending some time in the Turkish lounge at IAD, it was time for a transatlantic hop over to Zurich.
United’s 767s are comfy across all 3 cabins in my opinion so this was a flight I was looking forward to. Here’s United’s boarding groups:
- Preboarding: United Global Services, Active Duty Military, United 1K, and Families with small children
- Group 1: Polaris Business Class, United Gold and Platinum, Star Alliance Gold travelers
- Group 2: Premium Plus, United Silver, Star Alliance Silver, and United Explorer/Quest/Club cardholders
- Groups 3-5: Economy based on seat and group 5 for basic economy
I had platinum status at the time of this flight, so I boarded with group 1. One of the problems I have at IAD is that you don’t get good views of the plane from the terminal and only get a glimpse once you enter the boarding hall.
After boarding, I walked past the Polaris Business and Premium Plus cabins and finally reached the first row of economy. Row 30 surely has a lot of space being at the bulkhead and I highly recommend it to everyone. Even though this was free due to my status with United, it would even be worth some extra money for the additional comfort you get.
The legroom was ample enough to move around without having to make my neighbor get up. None of the other seats have enough legroom to get up from the window side without interrupting your neighbor, however, with the 767’s comfortable layout, every seat on this plane will be comfortable.
The crew were pretty friendly across the board and helped people settle into their seats quickly, but kindly.
The amenities on this flight are quite basic. All you get is a pillow and a blanket.
The pillow is one of those that you can tear in the middle and use as a neck pillow.
Another cool feature for added comfort is that each seat had individual air vents which is definitely useful, though not on overnight flights where US carriers like to leave their planes stone cold.
Eventually, once we finished boarding, we began our rainy taxi to runway 1R for departure.
We eventually began racing down runway 1R and had a relatively quick climb into the clouds once we got in the air,
We didn’t get served any snacks until about 1.5 hours into the flight due to strong turbulence. The crew had to sit in their jump seats for nearly an hour without being able to do anything. The storm we were flying through was too large to fly around and covered a large span going all the way up to the northeast US.
Eventually, when we reached some clear skies the crew began service abruptly.
For my choice of drink, I went with sparkling water and everyone got pretzels.
Nearly 2 hours after departure we finally got to the main courses. On an 8 hour flight, getting a meal 2 hours after departure would normally be way too long, but perfectly alright given the weather.
The choices were chicken, beef, or pasta and I went with the chicken option.
The meal tray was small, but I made the most of it.
The chicken was actually decently tasty and the quinoa was good as well.
The milk cookie was a standard packaged cookie.
The salad was the same dry rubber United always serves on flights leaving one of their hubs and the grains were intriguingly sweet.
The milk cookie was sweet, but again, a standard packaged sweet.
Dinner was overall low frills and nothing special. While the chicken was tasty the food was overall low quality, like a TV dinner ad that’s about where I draw the line at.
Breakfast was served an hour and a half before arrival and oh boy it was measly. I wasn’t expecting anything grand but they surely could do better than this. It was a complete sugar bomb. I never liked Chobani’s flavored greek yogurt because of how much added sugar it has and this was no exception. The biscotti was also very sweet (which it should be) but a little too much for breakfast. I just had a few bites of the yogurt and called it at that.
The rest of the flight was just views of light slowly coming to the day as we were flying over France.
Eventually, we began our descent into a snowy Zurich.
The views were absolutely stunning and it was a blanket layer of snow we were landing into.
Welcome to the winter wonderland of Zurich.
Overall, the flight was as standard as you’d expect. The crew was good on this flight but with United, that’s always a tossup. The food was cheap and ok but satiating for the flight which is what matters the most, the aircraft is comfortable for an 8-hour cross-ocean flight, and the amenities were standard. Is United the best way to cross the Atlantic? Probably not, but it’s comfortable, and you won’t get too much variation across most airlines that fly these shorter transatlantic routes.