Manipal can boast of a very young and vibrant population. They are all young smart students who are ambitious and adventurous and will sure travel abroad in future.
While we discuss international travels, a question that invariably pops up is which “Is the best and the worst Airlines. This could be a very subjective issue. After all every opinion is based on individual experiences and perceptions. The best example I can give about perception is our national carrier, ‘Air India’. We read so much criticism about it that it never occurred to me to travel in it. But once I did, I was amazed. It was a classic airline destroyed by a non accountable and corrupt bureaucracy.
The interiors were amazing, the food was delicious and the drinks ample. The airhostess was very polite. I would have rated it as the best if I had another experience to back my claim. Sadly that was the only time I flew. I was so overwhelmed that I even wrote a post in my blog.
Now coming to my best and the worst airlines. What would be the criteria for choosing an airline as good or bad? I did it based on the interiors, seating comfort, food and customer service.
I would rate ‘Emirates’ as the best airline. The interiors are pleasant, the stewards and Airhostesses are selected from various nationalities so that every national is comfortable. The entertainment channels are many and varied. A lot of creativity is shown in the selection of food and the presentation. Definitely the best of the best .
The next would be virgin airlines. This British airlines has amazing space between two seats. It is a bit expensive like the British Airways, but worth it.
My third and the favorite one was KLM. I use the past tense because they have now discontinued their service from Hyderabad.I have traveled the most in it. Apart from the other things, this airline has some of the finest air staff and the other attraction is that the connecting flight is from Schipol Airport, Amsterdam, my favorite airport. I hate going the La Guardia , Paris and Heathrow Airport, London way. The airports are not very modern. In Paris, there is no aerobridge connection and the bus ferry can be pretty tiring.
I traveled by the AirFrance only once and loved it. I have a very touching experience to share. While returning from India, I had to reschedule my itinerary as my mother had expired. On hearing this the lady at the counter rescheduled it without charging me a penalty. It is this human touch, which made it a great airlines in my book.But unfortunately all the flights go via Paris, my least favorite airport.
Lufthansa is one good airline. Majority of the Indians prefer it to other airlines. So it is about personal tastes. I would still vouch for KLM.
Among the Asian airlines, I would rate the Thai Airways as the best. Though I have always traveled only to Bangkok which is hardly four hours, but they score high on Hospitality and their sea food menu is amazing if you are partial to the thai food.
Now comes the tricky part. The worst airlines. I would without hesitation say most of the American airlines. The food is insipid. The drinks have to be purchased at prohibitive prices and the Air Hostesses are very indifferent. Kenyan Airlines also leaves a lot to be desired. I wasn’t much impressed with Malaysian or Singapore Airlines. But then why fly in them?
Sometimes, beggars can’t be choosers. Need I say more!