Hello everyone, and welcome to this new trip! Once again, this summer, I'm taking you with me for a trip to Asia that will involve some delightful flights. This review marks the first episode of this series, focusing on a flight from Paris to Munich, operated by Lufthansa aboard an Airbus A320 in Business Class.
Our journey begins a Thursday morning (around 05:00) at Terminal 1 of Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport. I arrived there from Paris via Uber, as there are no public transportation options available at such an early hour between the city and its main airport. A pricey ride, indeed... It's not the first time I've expressed this sentiment, but I still find it regrettable that no services are provided at these hours. I'm far from being the only one with an early flight. Forcing each passenger to rely on private transport is not only highly impractical but also hardly a compelling marketing point for an airport that claims to be "eco-friendly."
My last departure from Terminal 1 dates back to February 2020, coincidentally on the exact same flight I'm taking today: LH2239 to Munich!
As you might recall from my Flight reviews, Lufthansa has changed terminals several times during the pandemic. After the lockdown in 2020, the airline temporarily operated from Terminal 2A. Later, upon the reopening of Terminal 2B in 2021 after extensive renovation, Lufthansa and other non-SkyTeam Schengen carriers moved to this terminal, leaving Terminal 2A exclusively for non-Schengen flights. However, Lufthansa has finally returned to its original terminal, Terminal 1, which had been closed since the beginning of the pandemic and reopened in December 2022. This first flight provides me with the opportunity to return to the iconic Terminal 1 of Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport. A joyful reunion with the "camembert"!
Heading to Hall 4, where the check-in counters of the German airline are located.
Economy Class has quite a crowd.
On the other hand, the Business Class line is completely empty.
Once I have my boarding pass and my luggage is checked in, it's time to head to security.
The well-known moving walkway of Terminal 1 comes into play!
And the famous tunnel under Taxiway A3, leading to Gates 60-68 – the departure hall for Lufthansa Group flights.
Priority access for security, although the lines aren't particularly long. I breeze through security in just a few minutes.
On the other side, we find ourselves in the compact 60-68 boarding hall.
In terms of airlines, only Lufthansa Group carriers operate here, including Lufthansa, SWISS, Austrian, Brussels Airlines, and Eurowings.
The offerings within this small hall are quite limited.
A RELAY store
A Duty-Free shop
A Brioche Dorée café
And of course, restroom facilities. Due to its small size and the significant number of flights it accommodates, this hall is paradoxically both sparsely populated and crowded. Seating is quite limited.
An airBaltic A220 operating for SWISS this morning caught my attention.
Arriving at my designated Gate, Gate 61.
I find my aircraft already present. It arrived from Munich the previous day and spent the night at CDG.
Yet again, there are more passengers than available seats in this area.
Boarding commences on time, starting with groups 1 and 2, to which I belong.
Let me provide you with a glimpse of my aircraft: it's D-AIWK, named "Weiden in der Oberpfalz," an Airbus A320-214 that joined the Lufthansa fleet in December 2019. Notably, it's the most recent Airbus A320ceo to be acquired by the German carrier.
Paris loves us, even when we leave.
The fuselage shot is captured, revealing a rather soiled exterior…
Onboard, we're greeted with a warm smile from the purser.
Nostalgia kicks in as I notice the continuation of a childhood tradition: Lufthansa still offers young children toys and coloring materials featuring their mascots, Lu and Cosmo. It's heartening to see such thoughtful gestures toward children that aren't so common these days.
Cabin and seat
Welcome aboard this Airbus A320! The Business Class on my flight consists of 12 seats spread across 3 rows in a 2-2 configuration: a classic European Business Class layout. This means the same seat as in Economy Class, with the middle seat blocked and more legroom.
It's worth noting that my flight has three rows in Business class, but the separation between Business and Economy Class is provided by a movable curtain. This allows the crew to adjust the curtain from flight to flight, adding seats to either class as needed.
I settle into my seat, 3A.
I can't help but notice the presence of the new short-/medium-haul cabin introduced by Lufthansa in 2019, first seen on their Airbus A321neo. This new cabin design also appears on the newer A320neo and some of the latest A320ceo aircraft in the fleet. It features a modern, understated, and premium design, incorporating varying shades of grey.
Additionally, each seat is equipped with USB-A and USB-C ports.
The seat includes a relatively compact tray table and two magazine pockets.
One of these pockets holds the Safety card, a sickness bag, the WorldShop magazine (finally available onboard!), and the Onboard Delights menu, which is exclusive to Economy Class service.
The seat can be reclined using a button on the armrest.
The legroom is quite spacious.
My seat offers a pleasing view of the right engine.
With the completion of boarding, the small cabin is only half full, providing a sense of spaciousness.
Details of the cabin design catch my eye as we await departure.
The aircraft pushes back as safety demonstrations are conducted.
We taxi along Taxiway A3, making our way around the "camembert," the circular layout of Terminal 1.
As we taxi, I spot an Air India 787 parked nearby, giving you a clue to my final destination.
We glimpse the iconic Concorde displayed at the airport.
Our taxi continues until we reach the threshold of runway 27R.
Although normally used for departures, runway 27L is temporarily closed for maintenance, and we cross over it.
At 07:00, with a minor delay of 15 minutes, we take off from runway 27R, en route to Munich.
Our climb is gradual, affording a splendid view of CDG Airport.
Once we pass 10,000 feet, the seat belt sign is turned off, and we continue our climb to FL350 under clear skies.
Before the in-flight service begins, allow me to touch upon the entertainment offerings. These are relatively limited, encompassing downloadable magazines and newspapers accessible through a dedicated interface available before the flight.
This platform provides a wide array of content in various genres and languages.
There is a dedicated section for children. It's evident that Lufthansa aims to cater to travelers of all ages.
In terms of magazines and newspapers, passengers have a quota of one title in Economy Class (per flight), two titles in Premium Economy, three titles in Business Class, and 20 titles in First Class. Please note that I have a quota of six titles here as I'm flying two legs in Business Class.
Once downloaded, these titles are accessible in PDF format even after the flight.
Unfortunately, there are no other entertainment options on this flight. There's obviously no built-in in-flight entertainment system and no Wi-Fi either. This A320 is among the few in the fleet that lack Wi-Fi due to its densely configured seating with 180 seats.
As the flight continues, the service begins.
We're treated to a "Tasting Heimat" tray, the name Lufthansa gives to its short-/medium-haul Business Class offering. This entirely cold tray comprises yogurt, a plate of cold cuts, and cheese, along with jam and butter, all accompanied by bread and pastries.
Lufthansa has certainly hit the mark with this offering. The yogurt is refreshingly delicious, and the cold cuts and cheese are delectable (As someone of German descent, I have no qualms about enjoying such fare for breakfast!). My "Brötchen" and croissant are genuinely impressive: warm, crisp on the outside, and soft on the inside.
I'm truly impressed with this service, though it does emphasize the somewhat limited size of the tray table.
I accompanied the meal with Earl Grey tea and a glass of apple juice (which I unfortunately forgot to photograph).
On a positive note about the cabin crew, they've been consistently delightful, cheerful, and attentive throughout the flight.
As we approach the descent, the crew presents each passenger with an apple and a piece of chocolate. I save the apple for my layover in Munich; it's juicy and flavorful.
Before landing, I take a look through the WorldShop magazine, searching for aviation-related items. There's a "Lufthansa & Aviation" category with articles from the “Upcycling Collection”, featuring items made from repurposed airplane parts.
Descent and arrival
The descent begins, providing a scenic view of Munich Airport.
We continue our descent, descending into a sea of clouds.
A turn places us on the ILS approach for runway 26R.
At 08:05, landing 10 minutes ahead of schedule, we touch down on Bavarian soil, concluding a 1-hour-and-5-minute flight.
We vacate the runway and taxi to our gate at the extension of Terminal 2.
We pass by several aircraft, primarily Lufthansa jets.
I spot D-AINC, an A320neo I flew on in May 2022 between Frankfurt and Paris.
Notably, there's an unusual sight – a reactivated Lufthansa Airbus A380 in the distance.
We arrive at Gate K14 and once on the block, deboarding proceeds swiftly.
Welcome to Munich!
The terminal impresses with its cleanliness, modernity, and overall pleasant atmosphere.
I'll delve deeper into my following review of my flight to Delhi.
And so concludes the first Flight review of this trip. This was a pleasant flight experience in Business Class aboard a Lufthansa Airbus A320 from Paris to Munich. The crew was exceptional, and the cabin amenities were satisfactory for this duration, featuring USB ports, adequate legroom, and an appealing seat design. A minor critique would be the compact size of the tray table. The meal service was notably good – tasty and quite appropriate for a 1-hour flight, especially at this early hour. As for entertainment, the selection of newspapers and magazines was decent. The only downside was the absence of Wi-Fi on this rather modern A320.
Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport
Regarding Paris Airport, it was a pleasure to return to Terminal 1. Despite its age, it's been greatly missed during this period of health crisis. While not the most attractive, convenient, or efficient terminal, its historical significance and iconic nature hold undeniable charm. My experience leads me to believe that the accessibility in the morning hours needs improvement, with better public transportation options. The flow was adequate at this hour, particularly with priority access to security. However, the dining and shopping options are rather limited, and the terminal quickly fills up when multiple flights are departing, as was the case this morning.
Concerning Munich Airport, my impressions are centered on modernity, aesthetics, efficiency, cleanliness, and practicality. You can find more insights in my upcoming Flight review during my layover.
I hope you enjoyed this first Flight review. I'll be back soon for the second episode.
Thanks for reading and see you soon ;)