Thursday, 11 July 2013

Emirates A380

Take a second to think about the best service you’ve ever received. Be it in a shop, on a flight, at a restaurant. Think about the most amazing facilities you’ve ever used. Be it at the gym, in the office, at a hotel. Combine both of these thoughts and you come very close to what the Emirates experience feels like.  I have a lot of love for British Airways on a patriotic level and recently I flew on first class with them. However, I regretfully confess that flying economy on Emirates was better, so much better.  The cabin crew welcome you with smiles that are so natural and as incredible as it sounds, it looked like they genuinely enjoyed their jobs (!). I eavesdropped on requests that guests around me were making and every single one of them was met with a positive response, even the most outrageous requests. At some point during the flight, I stopped a member of the crew called Hector, and I asked him how to use the On Air wi-fi. He could simply have said to “follow instructions when signing in” but instead, he kneeled down by my side and took me through step-by-step until I was connected on to the internet. During the times my phone would load, Hector would give me some information on how On Air developed and on what Emirates airlines you would find the network most available. The conversations flew so naturally that before I knew it, I had connected on to a reasonable internet service on flight. Hector’s brilliant service was not only in his extensive knowledge and ability to converse, but also in the fact that he was kneeling down when speaking to me and he wasn’t the only one; almost every member of the crew would kneel down when speaking to customers for longer than 15 seconds. Now, picture it: you’re lying back in your seat and a cabin crew member is kneeling by your side, at your service. It gives an image of the slave era, doesn’t it? I don’t mean to say that the Emirates crew are like your slaves, far from that. My comparison is a compliment to how amazingly personal the service is; the cabin crew have a huge respect for authority. They treat their customers with the utmost respect, attention and loyalty and that is exactly what excellent service is.

Emirates.com ©
Incredible customer service aside, Emirates have the most amazing in-flight entertainment –titled ‘ice’ – available for its customers. Anyone that has used ice knows that there is simply too much to choose from. I saw that there was entertainment in all sorts of languages, from all sorts of cultures. There were also heaps of information on ‘Today’s flight’, ‘About Dubai’ and ‘Duty-Free shopping’. My favourite part of the entertainment was the interviews involving Steve Harvey and relevant Dubai business people. The interviews are insightful and help you to understand the past, present and future state of Dubai as a business capital and potential world expo host. The only issue, which was very easy to spot because it was the only issue, was that they had run out of chicken on my fight and the second option was just not good enough. In-flight catering is so tough to get right and I’m sure that the guys behind the scenes at Emirates are doing all they can to improve. I was surprised that there was no Arabic focus on the menu, which is what I had expected. 

Emirates.com ©

I’ve heard a countless amount of stories about the growth of Dubai and a huge part of that growth has been the Emirates airline. A few years ago I only identified them as the shirt sponsor for Arsenal FC, but here I am now writing a review on my Emirates A380 flight experience.  To get to Dubai, you pay a bit more than Royal Brunei and British Airways but believe me, every single extra penny is absolutely worth it. It doesn’t surprise me that Emirates currently hold the award for Airline of the Year, best Airline of the Middle-East and have the Best In-flight Entertainment as well (voted on www.worldairlineawards.com). Whenever you have the option to do so, I strongly urge you to ‘Fly Emirates’ because when I did, I was [metaphorically] blown away.

My theatrical version of Stan

My theatrical version of Stan