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Photos: Condor Airlines Launches A330neo Service from Frankfurt to Seattle
The German leisure carrier Condor Airlines officially inaugurated the Airbus A330-900neo service on its Frankfurt to Seattle route on May 11, 2023. The flight was one of the first to be operated by the popular German leisure airline’s new aircraft.
Condor Airlines is the oldest leisure airline in Germany. The German carrier’s year-round service between Frankfurt and Seattle started in the Summer of 2011. In 2017, it added a second seasonal service between Munich and Seattle, which has yet to return after the pandemic.
While the very recognizable beach towel design will be a frequent visitor in Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, its Airbus A330-200 will still cover some of the flights until the airline receives more airplanes. The leisure carrier introduced the new type last December and planned to deploy it on the Seattle to Frankfurt route in February. However, supply chain issues caused the airline to lease Air Belgium’s A330NEO for the Seattle flight after operating only four flights on its own metal.
The carrier is converting its long-haul fleet to the A330neo, which will be on all of Condor’s long-haul flights to North America by 2024. The A330NEO is replacing the airline’s aging Boeing 767 aircraft, significantly reducing Condor’s operating costs. The latest generation Rolls-Royce Trent 7000 engines, new wings, and aerodynamic innovations will reduce Condor’s fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by 20 percent.
The new airplane also comes with significant improvements in passenger experience. The new Airspace cabin on this aircraft offers a quieter flight experience and a more spacious environment than its predecessor. The interior is also very stylish, with a color concept featuring the “Condor Marina” and “Condor Earth” color schemes using subtle stripes as a recurring design element. Condor’s configuration will accommodate 310 passengers, featuring 30 seats in Business, 64 in Premium Economy, and 216 in Economy Class.
It also offers high-speed broadband internet, onboard connectivity, and tablet holders. Each seat’s inflight-entertainment system is also Bluetooth-enabled, so passengers can use their devices with the IFE.
The Economy section offers few amenities. The economy cabin is in a 2-4-2 layout, similar to that of a traditional full-service carrier. However, this section is mainly targeting cost-conscious customers. Therefore, the legroom in this section is relatively limited at 30 inches. Although, the airline designated the bulkhead row as XL seats due to their extra legroom, which costs a little over $100 depending on your flight.
The premium economy seats are the same base seats as the economy class. While the seat isn’t necessarily a massive upgrade compared to the standard economy, the soft product promises exceptional value for this upgrade. In addition to the extra legroom and more reclining on the backrest, this section also features an adjustable headrest and footrest for more comfort. The premium economy also offers a blanket, a small amenity kit, and premium menu items as part of its service.
The leisure carrier’s new business class is a huge step up from its old product on the 767 or its Airbus A330-200s.
The new plane is equipped with Safran’s Skylounge Core lie-flat seat that debuted on Starlux Airline’s A330NEO last year. The seat is 76-inch by 19-inch in bed mode and features a large 17.3-inch screen in 4K mode. Each seat is also equipped with USB-A and USB Type C charging ports. The seats are staggered and have a wing at head level for enhanced privacy. For those looking for more privacy, even-numbered rows offer window seats further away from the aisle, and the center pair are also further away from each other. The pair of seats in the odd-numbered rows will offer closer seating for those traveling together. Although the privacy divider will block direct views of your companion, the wall divider can’t be lowered for a larger bed.
The Frankfurt-based airline opted for an open shelf rather than a storage cubby, making the seat feels more spacious. It offers a doored storage compartment on the floor in the absence of the storage cubby. The entire business-class cabin provides a great ambiance and does not feel like a traditional leisure carrier. While the trim and finishes still look fresh on these brand-new seats, my only complaint was that the touch controls could be more responsive.
The business class cabin is in a 1-2 configuration with direct aisle access for all guests. However, the staggered configuration means your feet will be in a tight footwell unless you are upfront in the Business prime seat.
The Business Prime seat is similar to Virgin Atlantic’s Retreat Suite, which offers an oversized ottoman in the first row of the business class cabin. The larger ottoman can sit your travel companion for a face-to-face dining experience during the flight. Unlike its British counterpart, which only offers two of the superior seats on its A330neo, the German carrier has four Business Prime seats in the front row of its plane. The crown symbol in the seat map fittingly represents these throne seats.
Overall, Condor has revamped itself after departing the Thomas Cook Group. Its new product throughout the A330neo is a considerable evolution, and passengers should look forward to a great value and experience onboard.
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