Matt Brown flies AC305 from across Canada
An Air Canada A320.
Class: Economy Class.
Seat: 25D — an aisle seat, it was comfortable enough for an economy seat. I choose the aisle so I could stretch my legs without disturbing other passengers.
Check in: Fast and efficient with no queue, although getting through security was slow.
That said, it was great to see the officials vigilant with bag checks. It was good being able to check my bag in Montreal all the way to Auckland as opposed to the outbound journey through Los Angeles, where you have to get your bag and drop it off for the connecting flight.
Airport experience: A big, modern airport with plenty of eating and shopping options available.
Boarding: Slow going, which resulted in the plane taking off 20 minutes late. It was a packed flight.
Flight time: Just under 5 hours and we landed 10 minutes after the scheduled time at 4.25pm.
Service: It was good on this flight. There were two flight attendants in the Economy cabin and they were warm and courteous. You have to pay for everything except non-alcoholic drinks and water. The flight attendants came through the cabin a couple of times during the flight to offer a food and beverage service. I opted for a surprisingly tasty beef sandwich ($8.80). They don't accept cash, only credit cards.
I paid $3.90 for a set of earphones and watched one of the Fast and Furious movies before reading and dozing through the rest of the flight. Air Canada had a reasonable selection of recent releases and older films. You could also purchase Wi-Fi for the flight.
Fellow passengers: mainly Canadian although I did bump into a Kiwi couple who were connecting with the Air New Zealand flight to Auckland like me.
Verdict: Air Canada is probably the best option within Canada: they proudly announced over the intercom they had been named best airline in North America at the Skytrax Awards.