Swiss Business Class Zurich – Oslo: Great Service, Bad Amenities

Since nonstop flights from Zurich to Oslo were insanely expensive during the July 4th travel period (hovering around $200 per passenger), I decided to go for business class and pay $250 per passenger for the short 2.5 hour flight. Unfortunately award tickets were unavailable or too expensive (especially with Miles and More which was charging 17.5k miles + $100 in taxes each way). This seemed to be the ideal move given that it includes access to the fantastic Swiss Business Class Lounge at Zurich as well as two checked bags for each passenger.  That in itself is over $100 in value so it made absolute sense to do this. Anyway enough of my justifying what I paid for this flight.

So our flight departed the D gates at Zurich airport, which is about a 10-15 minute walk from the Swiss Lounge at the A Gates. The walk can take up to 15 minutes so keep an eye out for your gate and start walking over at least 40 minutes before departure. When I had arrived boarding had already started so I dodged my way through the crowd to find the business class line.

SwissAir operates their CS100 aircraft on their Oslo route, featuring seating in the 2-3 configuration throughout the cabin. The business class portion of the aircraft was limited to the first 4 rows and had the middle seat cordoned off for passengers seated on the side with 3 seats. Otherwise, there was absolutely no difference between economy and business class on this aircraft.

The CS100 (now the Airbus A220) is a very airy aircraft for what appears to be a large sized regional jet. overhead bins were fairly spacious and the cabin just appeared to be bigger than it actually was in reality. The seats on this SwissAir aircraft were unfortunately slimline seats and really weren’t that comfortable. Not too bad for a 2.5 hour flight to Oslo, but still not what the likes of what Delta offers on this aircraft.

As soon as we sat down, the FA came around and introduced himself, while also handing out a bottle of water and a packaged wet towelette.

Seat-back entertainment was nonexistent on this aircraft and Wi-Fi was not working so it was not a very productive flight for by any means. To top it off I was having so much fun at the SwissAir Lounge in Zurich that I forgot to charge my phone or my spare batteries.

Service on this flight was exceptional with the FAs keeping my glass full of diet coke and my hands full of Swiss chocolate. I was unable to try the small snack or dinner they offered on board since it was not vegetarian, but the cheese and panna cotta were delicious. Noticing that my sister wasn’t eating anything, the FA brought an entire bag of Swiss chocolate after seeing the empty wrappers on her tray table.

Flying time into Oslo on this beautiful summer evening ended being only 2 hours and before we knew it we were making our descent. Evening light over the city and nearby fjords was nothing short of spectacular and pretty much kept my nose to the window for the rest of the flight. Rays of light were bouncing around everywhere next to our aircraft and I couldn’t help snap a few images before landing. This was pretty much and end to an uneventful flight.


Bottom Line: 

SwissAir Business was well worth it in terms of the two checked bags, lounge at Zurich airport, and service all around. This was also one of only three nonstop daily flights between the pair of cities, which made it a “no brainer” in terms of saving time of connecting in another European city. The in flight experience was ok: service was exemplary, while amenities were poor. It’s pretty much what you should expect on short hop flights within Europe. If the fare difference wasn’t so low, I would’ve certainly flown economy in a heartbeat. After all, you don’t need the lounge at ZRH to have a great time at the airport and the seating on board is really no different between the classes of travel.

 


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