At Mahe International Airport, Turkish Airlines operates one daily flight to Istanbul. The flight departs at 9:35 PM, which still gives you a full day to enjoy the island paradise before having to leave for the airport. The airport is very small and the amenities are limited so there’s no need to arrive too early. When I went, it literally took me an hour to drop off a rental car, check-in, drop off a checked bag and make my way through security and passport control. This really is an easy airport to navigate.
Turkish Airlines Business Class passengers and Star Alliance Gold members are invited to use the Air Seychelles Salon Vallee De Mai Lounge prior to departure. This is a standard, no-frills lounge. There’s a central seating area, dining room, shower room, and a self-serve buffet station with a limited selection of hot and cold dishes.
Turkish Airlines Airbus A330 Business Class, Mahe, Seychelles to Istanbul
Aircraft: Airbus A330-200
Mahe, Seychelles to Istanbul
Depart: 9:35 PM on Monday
Arrive: 4:25 AM next day
Duration: 7hrs 50mns
Seat: 7A Business Class
This aircraft, a former Jet Airways A330-200, is configured with 30 lie-flat, herringbone seats in a 1-1-1 layout. There are six rows of seats in the forward business class cabin and four rows of seats in the rear business class cabin.
In the forward cabin, the seats are lettered A, D and K. Seats in column A and D face towards each other and have less privacy from your fellow passengers, whereas seats in column K are more secluded. Instead of facing other passengers, seats in column K face a wall, which is more ideal. Here is the aisle in between the A and D seats.
However, the privacy is reversed in the rear business class cabin with seats lettered A, G and K. In the rear cabin, seats in columns G and K will face towards each other, whereas seats in column A will have more privacy. In addition to a wall, there is a full-length curtain that can be drawn to fully enclose the G and K column of seats. On this flight, the G and K column of seats in the rear business class cabin was used as a crew rest area and the curtain was drawn to give them more privacy. Here’s the aisle in between the G and K seats of the rear business class cabin.
Note: SeatGuru identifies this configuration as “version 3” on their website but their description is not entirely correct. The column lettering is wrong and the business class seats in the rear cabin are facing the wrong direction.
On this flight, I was originally seated in 5K but moved to 7A, a window seat located on the left side of the aircraft for some more privacy.
Here’s the view from my seat. With the curtains closed, it became very private.
These seats offer 21 inches of width and a bed length of 70 inches, just shy of six feet long. These aren’t the widest seats and some people do complain that they feel “coffin-like.” Each seat is equipped with a personal entertainment system, two individual reading lamps, one USB port, and one universal electrical outlet. There are no personal, overhead air vents, which is a shame as Turkish tends to keep their cabins fairly warm. Storage-wise, these seats aren’t the best. Your carry-on bags can be stored in the overhead bins and there is a small pocket at your seat for your personal items. You can kind of store stuff underneath the ottoman but I found them to be a little small for a standard size backpack.
Waiting at our seats were a nice memory foam backrest, pillow, blanket and a pair of slippers. The blanket and pillow were decent but the memory foam backrest was fantastic.
This was an older aircraft and the seats were definitely worn out. There were stains everywhere and miscellaneous parts were falling apart. As I settled into my seat, the flight attendants came by with pre-departure beverages (water, juice or lemonade), Denon-branded noise-canceling headphones, amenities kits and a selection of international newspapers. I really love these Denon branded noise-canceling headphones and I think they actually sound better than my Bose QC 25s. They are super comfortable, sound great and do a fantastic job of blocking out noise.
Molton Brown amenity kits were provided on this flight. The kits were large and can be repurposed for future use but I wasn’t a fan of them. I think they look like makeup bags and I don’t think many guys will be reusing these. Inside, there were socks, eyeshades, earplugs, a shoehorn, comb, dental kit and facial products (lip balm and facial hydrator) by Molton Brown.
Business class was fairly light on this flight with only about a third of the seats taken. Once we reached our cruising altitude, the flight attendants came by to take our meal orders. Here’s the menu.
I’m normally a fan of Turkish Airlines’ meal services but this meal was rather disappointing. Instead of an elaborate multi-course affair, our salad, appetizer and dessert plates were all served on one express tray. The appetizer was a roast beef thing on tomato, served with a side salad, bread and cheese. With a flight time of almost 8 hours, I was really hoping for something more special.
I don’t know why but I went with the rigatoni with meat sauce and eggplants for my main dish. It was good but not as good as the other Do&Co meals I have had.
Just like on my outbound flight, the entire service was friendly and personable but also very efficient. The flight attendants were friendly and came by frequently to refill drinks and check on passengers but they also moved things along at an appropriate pace. After I was done, my plates were cleared and my bed was made. Turndown service included a bed sheet, blanket and another pillow.
While the flight attendant was making my bed, I checked out the lavatory and changed into my pajamas. There were three lavatories for business class passengers and they were all standard lavatories. Full-size bottles of Molton Brown soap and lotion were provided for use during flight.
I then settled in for a movie and a short nap before waking up for breakfast.
Breakfast was served about an hour before our arrival into Istanbul. It was just one tray consisting of some fruit, cheese and a cheese omelet. Again, I wasn’t impressed but I get it. With an arrival time of 4:25 AM, no one wants (or is ready for) a big or elaborate meal service.
Turkish Airlines A330 Business Class Bottom Line
Overall, this was a decent flight from Mahe to Istanbul. The aircraft was old and the equipment wasn’t in the best condition but the seat itself wasn’t bad. My seat offered a ton of privacy and the lie-flat bed was relatively comfortable. The cabin was very warm but that’s another issue. Service-wise, I had a really great crew. They were friendly and personable but also very efficient for this red-eye service. The food wasn’t up to Do&Co standards but the amenities were appreciated.
Have you flown with Turkish Airlines on this configuration before? If so, please share your thoughts with us in the comments section below. Thanks for reading!
The other related trip reports in this series:
- United Polaris Lounge, San Francisco
- Turkish Airlines Business Class, San Francisco to Istanbul
- Here’s How to Get a Free Day Tour in Istanbul
- Here’s How to Get a Free Transit Hotel in Istanbul
- Turkish Airlines Airbus A330 Business Class, Istanbul to Seychelles
- DoubleTree Allamanda Resort and Spa, Seychelles
- Hilton Seychelles Northlome
- Turkish Airlines Airbus A330 Business Class, Seychelles to Istanbul
- LOT Business Class Lounges, Warsaw
- LOT Polish Airlines Business Class, Warsaw to Los Angeles