Cabin-Check: Business Class, LAN
Route: Frankfurt - Madrid
Flight Time: 2:35
Airplane: Boeing 787-8
Total by international standards: 8/10
Total by intra-Europe standards: 10/10
Everyone knows how bad the value of flying business-class within Europe is. A blocked middle seat and edible food is the benefit of paying twice or even more than an usual economy ticket. Luckily LAN Airlines introduced a cool add-on route from Madrid to Frankfurt with their latest and most prestigious plane, the Boeing 787. The route is a so-called fifth-freedom flight which means that an airline from one country has the right to fly between two different countries. In this case LAN flies from Santiago De Chile to Madrid to Frankfurt and return.
Check-In in Frankfurt takes places at Terminal 1B which is a little bit off-site. A separate line for business-class passengers and frequent flyers was offered and we were checked-in within seconds. The security-check is also hassle-free due to the priority lane. From there, it is just a quick walk over to the AirCanada Lounge which LAN Airlines uses exclusively for their business-class costumers. While I have been a dozen times to the Senator- and Business Class Lounge, this lounge was new to me.
I was pleasantly surprised with the design and view over the terminal, as well as the great food offerings. Several hot dishes, a salad bar and a lot of different snacks - much better than the sausage- and potato-salad temple, a.k.a. the Senator Lounge.
With the boarding gate only being 5 minutes away, we left right on time and quickly found ourselves on board. Boarding is usually done through the second door which is between row 3 and 4 in business-class, therefore it might be better to choose a seat in row 1-3 if you are interested in a quiet boarding process.
A minute later we were already served a pre-departure drink (champagne, pisco sour and water was offered) as well as some nuts which unfortunately did not last long, thanks to the long taxi way in Frankfurt. ;-)
Around 30 minutes after take-off, it was time for a small dinner which consisted of a delicious salad with chicken and some fruits. Given the short flight time I thought it was a fantastic dinner - light but tasty. Service throughout the flight was attentive and our glasses never empty, in fact we even did a small wine tasting to figure out which wine option will best fit our choice – a big thanks to the crew who took their time despite the short flight.
After one of the most fascinating middle-haul flights in my life, we landed in Madrid and were quickly on our way to the city center. Summarizing this flight is quite easy: There is no better commercial option between Frankfurt and Madrid. A one-way ticket is available for around 140 Euro while the return sets you back 220 Euro - in business-class of course. Factoring in all amenities it is a steal and well worth the money. I really hope that LAN Airlines will keep this route and I can’t wait to fly them again - maybe even next time the whole route to Santiago de Chile!