TRIP REPORT: Swiss, Zurich - Belgrade


Last week I flew on Swiss’ Airbus A220 from Zurich to Belgrade. The trip confirmed to me that Swiss is the best of the Lufthansa owned airlines, in terms of service and experience.

I arrived at the airport two hours ahead of departure. Since Serbia is not in Schengen it is necessary to pass passport control. As the Swiss lounge in the non-Schengen area does not work (for some time now) I went to the Schengen area and used that one instead. It’s a great lounge. Big, with a lot of places to sit and a big selection of food.

Boarding for the flight began around 40 minutes prior to departure as it was a bus gate. As is usually the case on flights from Zurich, there were Serbian singers on board. This time I noticed the folk singer Aca Lukas and the group Hurricane that represented Serbia in Eurovision last year. Interestingly, Lukas was in business and the Hurricane girls in economy.

The flight was full. The layout of the plane is 2 seats on one side and three on the other. In business, one seat is blocked on each side, so I would recommend sitting on the side with two seats if in business as you will have no one sitting next to you.

We were warmly greeted by two crew members in the front of the plane. There were four rows of business class and a total of twelve passengers. Although we all boarded on time, the female pilot informed us that we would be delayed due to heavy traffic on the route but that we would make up for the delay while airborne.

I found the A220 to be a great plane. It is quiet, the windows are huge, the overhead storage space is designed in a way so it can fit a lot of luggage. I also found the lavatories to be rather spacious and that you can actually turn around and wash your hands unlike what I’ve experienced in the B737 MAX where you can barely enter. The leather seats on the Swiss A220 are comfortable and the plane was in great condition. Above each seat there is a mini screen, which usually displays a moving map but on this occasion, they didn’t seem to work (other than for the safety demonstration which was played) as they were showing connecting gates in Zurich the entire time.

Following departure, the crew sprang into action straight away. We were served lunch which consisted of raw tuna and noodles, which was delicious. A breadbasket was also offered, as well as drinks. I have to mention that the crew passed the cabin another two times offering drink refills and additional bread. This is quite a contrast compared to Lufthansa and Austrian on comparable routes. After lunch, tea and coffee was offered and again passengers were asked if they would like something to drink. Of course, they also came around to give the signature Swiss chocolate.

We landed in Belgrade on time despite the delay in departure and parked at the C1 gate which was recently refurbished. After disembarking we went through a corridor and up to the second level from which we walked down to the ground level to passport control. We were lucky as there was no one at all at passport control and, to my surprise, the bags were already on the conveyor belt. It took all of 10 minutes from leaving the plane to leaving the airport (with luggage).

This was a really nice experience and I really enjoyed Swiss. I think their A220 is a much more comfortable ride than the A320. It is unfortunate that Swiss, like the rest of the Lufthansa group, was forced into introducing buy on board in economy despite a lot of resistance (especially from Swiss). But it is Lufthansa’s policy that no one can offer better service than them in their group. Still, I think Swiss excels in terms of catering offer, cabin crew and ground experience.

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  1. Thank you for your insightful report, especially the bird you flew on. Switzerland-Serbia market is rather huge, so no wonder the plane had been filled up to the last seat.

  2. Anonymous09:35

    Great trip report! It’s funny that J catering on LX and OS is miles ahead of the LH mainline.

    Speaking of singers, I had the “pleasure” of flying with Đani on OS BEG-VIE yesterday. When they announced priority boarding, he jumped the whole queue of premium pax to ask if he can board first as Silver. For whatever reasons, the gate agent let him. Hard cringe.

  3. Anonymous10:01

    I also flew their A220 out of ZRH last week, and it was a wonderful experience. The comfort and the large windows are really top notch

    1. Anonymous10:08

      How was the load on your flight?

    2. Anonymous11:10

      The most important information is that you now can clear BEG airport in ten minutes again. It was not such two months ago.

  4. Anonymous21:14

    Very nice report! Is it wise to serve raw fish on an airplane??


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