Grant Bradley flies Lufthansa LH0370 from Germany to Hong Kong.

The plane:

An Airbus A340-600. Lufthansa has 24 of these stretched A340s, which for a time were the longest commercial aircraft flying, at 75.3m longer than the A380s and 747-400s. The new model jumbo, the 747-800, stretches to 76.3m. At 12 years of age, the plane was a bit older than average for Lufthansa although the cabin was in very good nick.

On time: Seven minutes late getting away.

My seat: 37H, one of 189 Economy seats. It was plenty wide and with sufficient legroom. The cabin had a 2-4-2 configuration and I was on the aisle of the window pair.


How full: Close to capacity in Economy.

Fellow passengers: A mix of those heading home to China, holiday-makers from Europe and some heading out for work, such as the Italian logistics executive next to me who was heading to Shanghai to learn her fourth language.

Airport experience: A bit of a wait to get to the shiny Munich terminal after a flight from Berlin, which was already a pretty tight connection. I still had time for a swift local wheat beer (when in Rome ...) thanks to the friendly folks who had just closed up and didn't mind that the last of my euro coins didn't quite cover it. Plenty of pre-Oktoberfest lederhosen and dirndl worn by airport staff.

Entertainment: Seatback touch screens; the German collection was interesting during the 11hr 10m flight.

Food and drink: A choice of Asian or Western food. Real cutlery to eat my dinner of beef goulash, and a limited range of wine and beer but was generously served. The breakfast eggs were a bit bouncy.

The service: Just fine. Crew took a very practical approach to a dreaded crying baby situation by politely juggling some passengers and moving the young family to much more suitable seats in the middle block.

The toilets: The best bit. A bank of five of them downstairs in the belly of the plane. They were large and it was nice to stretch the legs taking the stairs to the large toilet lobby. It was a bit like being in a premium cabin bar... sort of.

The price: It was part of a $3285 round-trip ticket to Oslo from Auckland.


Would I fly again: Yes, I was pleasantly surprised at how roomy it was.