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Turkish Airlines | TA | Review by Kerry Kubilius

What's in store for you when you fly Turkish Airlines?


Flying to Turkey? Consider flying Turkish Airlines when you do. Turkish Airlines offers direct flights to Turkey from major international cities, including New York and Chicago.

Turkish Airlines Services

Flying Turkish Airlines is a refreshing change for travelers who bemoan the fact that other airlines are systematically stripping services from their flights or charging for services that used to be standard. Even in economy class seating, services that are disappearing from air travel are still offered by Turkish Airlines. These services include:

  • Provision of in-flight amenities kit complete with sleeping mask, socks, toothbrush and toothpaste, shoe horn, and ear plugs
  • Food service on domestic flights
  • Provision of bottled water on long international flights

Flying Turkish Airlines’ Economy Class

While economy class seating is still cramped on a Turkish Airlines flight, built-in design elements aid in making the flight more comfortable. These include a fold-down footrest, adjustable lumbar support in the seat backrest, and a cup holder that is useable independent of the tray table. This last feature means that your space isn’t unnecessarily restricted if you only need a surface on which to place your beverage. Personal video screens have privacy filters so your neighbor can’t clearly see, from most angles, what you are watching during the flight.

Turkish Airlines Food

Airline food will always be airline food, but in the case of Turkish Airlines, the food is perhaps more palatable than even that on airlines that hire well-known chefs to tailor menus to current trends. Light ingredients mean that you can keep your airsickness bag tucked away. For example, Mediterranean-style pasta or lamb meatballs, accompanied by smoked salmon with yogurt sauce are easy on digestion. Hazelnuts, advertising their Turkish origin, replace the heavily seasoned snack mixes that are staples used to tide over passengers on other airlines. A full beverage service includes cold and hot beverages, as well as wine, beer, and spirits.

Turkish Airlines Cabin Interiors

Those flying Turkish Airlines for the first time may be surprised at the bright turquoise décor. This color is inspired by the gemstone that gets its name from Turkey. Stylized tulips – though they are most often associated with Holland – remind us that they, too, originated in Turkey. The effect is cheerful, bright, and clean - a pleasant change from the muted, dark tones favored by other airlines.

Final Notes about Turkish Airlines

Turkish Airlines provides an enjoyable flight with services and features that are integral to an overall positive experience. Flight attendants remain serene and unflappable. A single drawback is the passenger’s apparent inability to completely shut off the individual video screen at will – these glow even when the cabin lights are dimmed (though the ambient light is useful for helping you return to your seat if you leave it temporarily, it is irritating when you are trying to sleep). During a departure flight, this traveler felt that the lavatories could have been kept cleaner and better stocked, although this problem was not apparent on the return trip. Regardless, it’s easy to see that Turkish Airlines is trying to maintain a standard disappearing from the airlines industry and is concerned about the comfort of even its economy class passengers.

Contacting Turkish Airlines

Tel: 1-800 874 8875
Website: THY - Turkish Airlines

Istanbul International Airport

If you are flying into Turkey, it's likely that you will fly into Atatürk International Airport outisde of Istanbul. See a Atatürk International Airport Map and get airport transportation and hotel information.

As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with a complimentary flight for the purpose of reviewing those services. While it has not influenced this review, About.com believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our ethics policy.

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