Vantage point

Friday, January 11, 2008

Jet Airways is Superb!

Over the last few years I have flown almost every major airline from America, and most of the European ones. Recently I flew Jet Airways for my India trip, and I can say that it is by far the best international airline I have ever flown on. Apparently, Naresh Goyal aims to make it a top-3 airline in the near future. If they continue to keep up their service quality, I foresee it happening very easily. Here is what makes them so good -

- There is easily at least 5-6 inches more leg room in the economy class seats. The difference was even more noticeable since I was on a Virgin Atlantic flight before boarding Jet.
- The aircraft is literally infested with stewards and stewardesses. There are at least 10 of them in the economy section, as opposed to 3-4 for other airlines. So if you want anything, right from water to your choice of alcoholic drinks, all you have to do is push a button and they are at your service.
- The flight crew is polite, prompt and extremely helpful.
- I am a big water guy. I drink water all the time. Jet gives you small bottles of water at once when you ask for them, as opposed to other airlines which will take 20 minutes to bring you a small glass of water.
- The bathrooms on the plane are roomier than the other airlines. You don't feel claustrophobic when you are in there. Plus they have fancy Molten Brown soaps and fragrances inside the bathroom.
- The food as well as the in-flight entertainment options are superb. And more importantly, for a news junkie like me, they have a news section which is continuously updated. I was in the air when Benazir Bhutto was assassinated, and yet I got to know of it just an hour after it happened.
- While departing from Mumbai Airport, the Jet ground crew was helpful and inefficient in managing the queues. There was a bottleneck forming at the terminal because of the queues and they managed to streamline it in 10 minutes.
- A lot of small and seemingly unimportant things which make your flight so much more pleasant. Like giving a warm towel at the beginning and end of the flight. Having a huge selection of newspapers and magazines on board. Giving actual metal silverware as opposed to tawdry plastic ones.

The next time I fly to India or even to Europe I will gladly pay a couple of hundred dollars extra to fly Jet. How ironic that the best airline on my list is Indian, and so is the worst airline on my list (obviously, Air India).