Written by DLX contributor, Aniesia Williams
With connecting service to dozens of American cities and a strong commitment to passenger comfort, Turkish Airlines might be the best international air carrier you’ve never heard of. Their global reach is almost 300 destinations across 120 countries, so there probably isn’t anyplace that Turkish Airlines can’t get you to. But it’s their service that will make you look twice.
1. Turkish Airlines Looks Good for Its Age
This carrier was established back in the 1930s; however, the average age of aircraft is only seven years old. Its recent and on-going expansion of its Boeing and Airbus fleet demonstrates the carrier’s commitment to service.
Turkish Airlines opened a new maintenance and repair facility in 2014. One of the innovations it’s working on is phasing in locally designed, ergonomic seating for maximum comfort.
In recent years, Turkish Airlines has been named Southern Europe’s Best Airline and Europe’s 3rd Best Airline multiple times, plus, it’s won awards for in-flight and airport lounge food service. But really, thousands and thousands of passengers can’t be wrong – the number of passengers carried by Turkish Airlines has increased 3-fold in the past ten years!
2. Travel in Comfort
Long-haul travel can be tough. But with Turkish Airlines, passengers can work, relax, or prep for their destination in the luxury of business class and the affordability of economy class. Both feature comfortable and roomy seats. Business class perks include seats with an in-chair massage function, reading lamp, charging/power station, and privacy screen. These seats also lie flat for overnight travel. Business class passengers can also enjoy complimentary car service to and from the airport, as well.
The airline’s private lounge in Istanbul Ataturk Airport, plus select other destinations, including Washington, D.C., is available for business and some economy class travelers. Passengers with a layover of six hours or more in Istanbul, Turkey, can sign up for special sightseeing and cultural walking tours through TourIstanbul.
Lounge amenities include showers, chair massages, hotel-quality suites for rest and relaxation, Internet access, meeting rooms, and a supervised children’s play area. Restaurant-quality meals and snacks are also offered.
3. Award-Winning Dining
Turkish Airlines is known for its on-board food service. Business class travelers are welcomed aboard with complimentary welcome drinks. They choose from seasonal meals featuring Turkish and international recipes prepared in onboard kitchens by trained chefs. And no disposable plates here – meals are served on porcelain dishes! Being high in the sky doesn’t mean sacrificing high-quality dining.
A broad selection of specialty meals are available, too, like vegetarian, baby/child, gluten-free, lactose free, low sodium, diabetic, seafood, and bland. Passengers with religious dietary needs can choose Kosher or Hindu meals. All Turkish Airlines aircraft are designated peanut-free aircraft.
4. There’s Never “Nothing to Do”
In-flight entertainment options meet all the standards you’re used to. They include new and classic films and television programs, an exclusive My Music Plant listening platform (developed with Universal Music Group), games, and more. Wifi is available, as is the airline’s own monthly magazine. Children can access special kids programming, which includes Disney content, too.
Passengers can even take advantage of the airline’s own Fly Good Feel Good health and wellness page through the airline’s website; it’s packed with tips and reminders for how to travel comfortably and feel good once you arrive at your destination.
5. The Perks of Travel with Turkish Airlines
The airline rewards returning travelers nicely. Turkish Airlines’ Miles and Smiles customer loyalty program applies to the company’s own flights, plus other Star Alliance flights. Benefits include free cabin upgrades, additional baggage allowance, private lounge access, ability to earn/use reciprocal program miles, and an individualized portal for ticket purchases.
And Turkish Airlines understands how important it is when traveling with musical instruments and sports equipment, whether it’s for recreation or work. Musical instruments are welcome on flights, with smaller ones carried in the cabin and larger ones requiring the cargo hold. Sports equipment can be carried, too: the first set of golf clubs and skis are free, although international passengers may incur fee for other sports equipment.