Turkish Airlines – not the best but not the worst

1043 Reviews

Star Travel Rating

3/5

Review type

Airline

Location

Date of travel

June, 2023

Product name

Turkish Airlines

Product country

Turkey

Product city

Istanbul

Travelled with

Couple

Reasons for trip

Culture/Sightseeing

We flew Turkish Airlines from London Heathrow Terminal 2 to the Azerbaijan capital, Baku, via Istanbul.

Checking in online 24 hours beforehand, gives you the opportunity to swap seats for a small fee. As I hate window seats, I paid £15 each for same row aisle seats: we were happy with our allocated seats on the second leg. Check in at the terminal the following day at 5.45am was straightforward, the gate number came up 90 minutes beforehand, and although we boarded in good time, we took off 30 minutes late.

The complimentary breakfast was a tortilla slice, roll with jam, and cake, with juice, water and hot drinks being available. The leg room was reasonable, the entertainment system easy to navigate, and there was a good selection of films including recent releases.

In Istanbul, we had five hours to kill and found a casual Italian restaurant, Obica. We were unfamiliar with the Lira exchange rate, but thought how expensive can a bottle of Pinot Grigio, a small bottle of San Pellegrino, and a simple shared tomato and mozzarella pizza be? Well, it was nearly £90, in what we later discovered, is often regarded the most expensive airport in the world.

The second longer flight, set off on time, food and drinks arrived and, although there was a choice of meatballs or pasta, we declined the complimentary tray as we were full of expensive pizza, and stuck with wine and water. We landed only 15 minutes late.

Flying home a month later from Tbilisi in Georgia, again via Istanbul, check in, security and immigration impressively took only 45 minutes. We boarded early and set off on time, having paid £37 in total to change seats on both flights.

Transiting in Istanbul involved a huge hike, so we were pleased to have only two hours and no time for extortionately priced pizza. Bags were scanned and after passport control, we found our gate. Here, passports were checked by three different people in close proximity, with the third man determining whether bags would be manually searched. Fortunately, we were both waved through. The meal again was a relatively tasty vegetarian pasta with the option of beef.

The staff were friendly and all in all, it was a reasonable, but not outstanding service.

Helen Jackson

Join the club

Become a member to receive exclusive benefits

Our community is the heart of Silver Travel Advisor, we love nothing more than sharing ideas, inspiration, hints and tips between us.

Come feel the love on a Princess cruise. You’ll enjoy the MedallionClass experience others simply can’t, and it’s exclusively for everyone. Visit incredible destinations and be involved in the best experiences around each one of them.

Experience more with Princess and connect effortlessly with the world around you, spend time away with loved ones, take a moment for yourself, and fall in love with your holiday of a lifetime, every time.

With over 20 years of experience, Wendy Wu Tours has mastered the art of creating exceptional, fully inclusive tours which showcase the very best of each destination.

Each tour is led by a world-class guide, who will highlight the very best of their homeland, and includes authentic cultural experiences so you are not just seeing the sights, but truly immersing yourself in local life.

Say hello to ease at sea. Ambassador’s purpose is simple: they want to inspire every guest to experience authentic cruising, effortlessly and sustainably. Passionate about protecting our oceans and destinations, their ships comply with the highest industry emission standards and there is no single-use plastic on board.

On your voyage, you will receive the warmest of welcomes from the Ambassador community as you sail upon the friendliest ships afloat.

This is a global co-operative co-owned by local partners using real local experts and guides, which supports local communities, environments and wildlife. It offers travellers quirky places to stay, activity holidays and learning experiences. Not In The Guidebooks gets travellers off the beaten track into local culture with day experiences and longer, immersive adventures.

From wild wellness breaks in Wales to painting in Portugal, sustainable adventures in Mauritius to food safaris in Brazil, this is immersive, exciting travel.

Seabourn’s five intimate ships carry guests to the heart of great cities, exclusive yacht harbours and secluded coves around the world, while two new purpose-built expedition ships will combine exhilarating adventures in remote destinations with the sophisticated amenities of the world’s finest resorts at sea.

From the luxury of all suite accommodations to complimentary fine wines and spirits, and a no tipping policy, Seabourn exemplifies the definition of travelling well.