Service on EWR-TLV

 
Old Dec 3, 09, 2:24 pm
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Service on EWR-TLV

I am looking to fly BOS-TLV this spring for spring break. I'm looking at J fares and any AA, BA, IB, or LY fare from BOS is significantly ($1800++) higher than either DL or CO. I'd rather stick with OW partners, but oh well. With that said, I'm seriously considering my options with CO. I know DL sends their 763s from JFK which I am not too impressed with, even though I have DL Gold status now.

How is the service on EWR-TLV? Any likelihood I'll get the 777 with new lie flat seats installed? The current BusinessFirst product on its way out seems fine, but lie flat would be nice.

How is the catering?

Im also having trouble selecting the best BOS-EWR/EWR-BOS flight. I am taking CO 84, the earlier flight out and want to make sure I have enough time. Is a 1 hour, 25 minute connection sufficient for EWR. Should I be worried? Im tempted to take a flight 2 hours earlier in case of the likely event of delays.
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Old Dec 3, 09, 2:36 pm
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Originally Posted by AAerSTL View Post
I am looking to fly BOS-TLV this spring for spring break. I'm looking at J fares and any AA, BA, IB, or LY fare from BOS is significantly ($1800++) higher than either DL or CO. I'd rather stick with OW partners, but oh well. With that said, I'm seriously considering my options with CO. I know DL sends their 763s from JFK which I am not too impressed with, even though I have DL Gold status now.

How is the service on EWR-TLV? Any likelihood I'll get the 777 with new lie flat seats installed? The current BusinessFirst product on its way out seems fine, but lie flat would be nice.

How is the catering?

Im also having trouble selecting the best BOS-EWR/EWR-BOS flight. I am taking CO 84, the earlier flight out and want to make sure I have enough time. Is a 1 hour, 25 minute connection sufficient for EWR. Should I be worried? Im tempted to take a flight 2 hours earlier in case of the likely event of delays.
CO does not assign aircraft to specific routes, so it is the luck of the draw as to whether or not you'll get a ship with the new seats. BF service is generally pretty good but there are several comparisons and trip reports available if you search for them. And I would go for something significantly longer than an hour and a half for a connection in EWR; never know what the weather or ATC might bring your way.
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Old Dec 3, 09, 2:39 pm
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Originally Posted by Mackieman View Post
CO does not assign aircraft to specific routes, so it is the luck of the draw as to whether or not you'll get a ship with the new seats. BF service is generally pretty good but there are several comparisons and trip reports available if you search for them. And I would go for something significantly longer than an hour and a half for a connection in EWR; never know what the weather or ATC might bring your way.
+1 ...especially coming from BOS
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Old Dec 3, 09, 2:54 pm
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Allowing a 2-hour connection is reasonable. Boarding for Tel Aviv flights starts a little sooner due to the additional security check, and there are lots of flights from Boston to Newark, so I think it's worth building a longer layover.

I've flown Continental, Delta, and El Al. They each have their pros and cons. Delta is switching to a 747 for JFK to Tel Aviv flights, but I'm not sure when that will happen. The 767, I agree, is kind of cramped.

Continental offers dependable, comfortable service. Even if you don't get a flat bed, you will get very good food (two full meals both directions regardless of the time of departure, very good mid-flight snack on daylight return flights.) There will be video on demand, in-seat power, and excellent service from the Hebrew-speaking crew (it's less consistent with the regular crews.)

My last trip was on Delta via Atlanta on the 777... they have nicer blankets and pillows, but nothing else. Every other aspect of Continental's service: the food, the attitude, the lounges, was better. Continental also has much better check-in at Tel Aviv, where they have their own staff. Delta contracts out.

The lounge in Tel Aviv is the unexciting Dan Lounge for both Delta and Continental. Only El Al has the amazing King David Lounge.

The problem with some of the European carriers is that they treat Europe-Tel Aviv as a sort of domestic trip: Iberia and Air France fly A320s with less space, entertainment, and food on a long flight. British Airways, Swiss, and Lufthansa offer a more longhaul service on Europe-Tel Aviv flights.

Bottom line: I like Continental. It probably won't knock your socks off, but it's definitely NOT worth $1500+ to fly with someone else.

Tisa nimah!
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Old Dec 3, 09, 3:02 pm
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Originally Posted by Mats View Post
My last trip was on Delta via Atlanta on the 777... they have nicer blankets and pillows, but nothing else. Every other aspect of Continental's service: the food, the attitude, the lounges, was better. Continental also has much better check-in at Tel Aviv, where they have their own staff. Delta contracts out.
Thanks for all the info. CO really does seem like the best option. If DL could route me through ATL on the 777, I would definitely do DL over CO. BOS-JFK is notorious for delays, and both the connecting flights feeding to the EWR flight are E175s and CR9s, which I don't like. It seems ATL might be too far for MPM mileage purposes. Doing a search for award seats, thought it does allow an ATL routing.

Too bad about the lounge situation in TLV. I've had friends say the same thing, but they have since taken LY.
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Old Dec 3, 09, 3:05 pm
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Originally Posted by AAerSTL View Post
Thanks for all the info. CO really does seem like the best option. If DL could route me through ATL on the 777, I would definitely do DL over CO. BOS-JFK is notorious for delays, and both the connecting flights feeding to the EWR flight are E175s and CR9s, which I don't like. It seems ATL might be too far for MPM mileage purposes. Doing a search for award seats, thought it does allow an ATL routing.

Too bad about the lounge situation in TLV. I've had friends say the same thing, but they have since taken LY.
You don't like the E175s? I've enjoyed The E170 and its big sister the E190 on B6.
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Old Dec 3, 09, 3:26 pm
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Originally Posted by Mats View Post
Only El Al has the amazing King David Lounge.
Amazing? Hardly, I mean its a nice lounge for sure, but amazing???

Last edited by clubman; Dec 4, 09 at 8:35 am
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Old Dec 3, 09, 6:40 pm
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Originally Posted by AAerSTL View Post
Thanks for all the info. CO really does seem like the best option. If DL could route me through ATL on the 777, I would definitely do DL over CO. BOS-JFK is notorious for delays, and both the connecting flights feeding to the EWR flight are E175s and CR9s, which I don't like. It seems ATL might be too far for MPM mileage purposes. Doing a search for award seats, thought it does allow an ATL routing.

Too bad about the lounge situation in TLV. I've had friends say the same thing, but they have since taken LY.
why not US non-stop PHL-TLV? They use the A-330 and are suppose to be getting the lie-flats if they dont have them already. i generally wouldnt suggest US but Ive heard this Routing is different.

Ive heard good things about that Flight, OK not US perse. Dont know much about the meals etc

but its a late flight in both directions unlike COs 84/85 combo
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Old Dec 3, 09, 9:22 pm
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I've flown this route several times on various airlines. Here are some random thoughts.

1. Dont take the AF connection in CDG to TLV. Its on a A320/321. Even in Business it's cramped and the food/entertainment are lousy.
2. I absolutely love CO EWR-TLV service. They have 2 departures (soon to be 3)
3. CO has consistant quality and service. Plus if you get in on a Z sale/special fare a relatively good bargain.
4. By early spring when your trip comes around there should be perhaps 3-5 (out of 20) 777 modified with the new lay-flat seats. Your chances of getting one on at least one segment should be fairly good.
5. Dan Lounge is an afterthought for me. Its really kinda small and has meager food choices. You are better off visiting the food pavilion.
6. Careful with duty free liquids when leaving TLV. They may make you dispose of them prior to boarding. They have this silly interpretation of the liquid law for US bound flights. Your mileage may vary.

Enjoy your trip!
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Old Dec 3, 09, 9:29 pm
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Originally Posted by Mats View Post

Bottom line: I like Continental. It probably won't knock your socks off, but it's definitely NOT worth $1500+ to fly with someone else.

Tisa nimah!
Great, comprehensive post!

I usually fly Delta 4-6 times a year to TLV business class. I status matched to CO and have been wondering if I made a mistake, but your post is encouraging.

Do you have any experience with the kosher food on CO vs DL.? Or LH for that matter?
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Old Dec 3, 09, 9:38 pm
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Originally Posted by joebeenyc View Post
2. I absolutely love CO EWR-TLV service. They have 2 departures (soon to be 3)
Care to share your insight/source on this?
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Old Dec 3, 09, 9:46 pm
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Originally Posted by craz View Post
why not US non-stop PHL-TLV? They use the A-330 and are suppose to be getting the lie-flats if they dont have them already. i generally wouldnt suggest US but Ive heard this Routing is different.

Ive heard good things about that Flight, OK not US perse. Dont know much about the meals etc

but its a late flight in both directions unlike COs 84/85 combo
I looked at US, but have had so many bad experiences with them over the years that I really would not like to give them any more business, particularly internationally. Nonetheless, their new J seat isn't too impressive and I do not like the A330, even as a new AC. Also, their BOS-PHL flights are often delayed and are solely operated on E190s.

I think CO is looking like the best option. I did pull up a TR and the service in BusinessFirst looks very good, granted its nothing like EK or CX.


Anyone who has flown CO from TLV know how far in advance I should plan on arriving to check-in? CO recommends 3 hours on their website, but that seems like a bit much for me. I'm flying back with friends that will be in Y, so that's also a consideration.
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Old Dec 3, 09, 10:05 pm
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Originally Posted by AAerSTL View Post
Anyone who has flown CO from TLV know how far in advance I should plan on arriving to check-in? CO recommends 3 hours on their website, but that seems like a bit much for me. I'm flying back with friends that will be in Y, so that's also a consideration.
I flew back on Shabbat on CO85 and left my hotel in Herzliya two hours before departure time. Getting to the airport 90 minutes prior would be plenty of time.
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Old Dec 4, 09, 2:15 am
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i love co tlv-ewr service

ive flown this route alot and i personnaly find them the best hands down.

have flown in the past with elal (naturally), air france and delta.

in my opinion - there is no comparison at all. especially with elal - i find their service to JFK / EWR to be horrible.

so i really strongly recommend co!

shabbat shalom.
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Old Dec 4, 09, 4:06 am
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Originally Posted by FT Lurker View Post
I flew back on Shabbat on CO85 and left my hotel in Herzliya two hours before departure time. Getting to the airport 90 minutes prior would be plenty of time.
If you are not an Israeli citizen 90 minutes is definitely not enough time. Even 2 hours can be too short. On that particular Shabbat the airport must have been empty.

If you don't get there in time to do security and all they will not let you board.

If you are going to eat, Dan lounge is OK, not great but OK.

The liquor is behind the reception desk and you need to ask for it - and you will get it. Glenfidich 12 on hand.

Have a great trip,

Shofar
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