Flight Review: Lufthansa – Riga (RIX) to Frankfurt (FRA) – TodaysFlyer.com

Flight Review: Lufthansa – Riga (RIX) to Frankfurt (FRA)

(Note:  This is an older flight review from a few years ago that I had written and decided to share)

I recently flew on Lufthansa during a flight from Riga, Latvia (RIX) to Frankfurt, Germany (FRA) on board a Boeing 737-300 aircraft.  This was the third flight that I had with Lufthansa on this trip, and the least impressive of them all.  Please allow me to explain.

I had arrived at Riga International Airport quite a few hours before my flight was scheduled to depart, as my traveling companion had a flight back to St. Petersburg, Russia before mine.  When we arrived at the airport, there was quite a long line to check-in for her Air Baltic flight, but no ticket counters for my Lufthansa flight.  I asked the woman at the information desk where it was located, and she said that they would not be open until 2 hours prior to the flight.  I started to panic inside!  There was nothing to do for 4 hours before the ticket counter opened.  As I started to walk away, she said “are you checking a bag”?  I turned and responded “no”, and she directed me to a row of three little computers near the wall.  In broken English she stated ”Check-in there, there”.

These computers were unlike the kiosks we are used to in the United States where you swipe your ID or Credit Card.  These were nothing more than one default screen with links to multiple airline websites for check-in.  After numerous, and I mean numerous failed attempts and errors at checking in, I finally was able to succeed.  Even though I was unable to select my seats for the flight, I didn’t care as I just wanted to print my ticket, get through security and grab some coffee.

After seeing my friend off on her flight, I waited for a few more hours drinking some great Costa Coffee.  I walked over to my gate about 30 minutes before departure, only to find out there was no aircraft yet.  I figured this was nothing more than a quick turn, so it would probably be arriving soon.  I checked “Flight Aware” on my phone and it showed the plane was still a ways out from the airport.  The inbound flight arrived in Riga about 15 minutes behind schedule.  As soon as the passengers began exiting the aircraft, a rush of passengers swarmed the gate and formed a long line in front of the door.  We had a “zone number” listed on our ticket, so I kind of stood off to the side, as I figured I would be in the first group that boards after First Class, since I was in the back of the plane.  Well, I waited and waited until they announced First Class, and then “all rows”.  It was a sold out flight, not to mention what felt like the longest boarding ever.

Since I had a carry-on bag (with a fragile coffee cup in it), I was saddened to find that every single inch of overhead bin space was in use and packed.  As there were still passengers boarding behind me, I asked the Flight Attendant if she could help in finding any space for the bag.  She was not very helpful and just said “You need to find space”.  Well, the flight is already behind schedule, and now I am holding up the final couple passengers and their seats.  Don’t ask me how, but under the influence of a LOT of coffee and prior airline ramp/baggage employee experience, I took two overhead bins filled with coats, bags, and purses, removed all the items, and perfectly packed them in again (along with my own bag), in under 60 seconds.  There were two German gentleman sitting beneath the overhead bin that said “impressive” to me as I slammed the door shut.

The meal on this flight was a small white box with a few meatballs in them, along with beverage service.  I was kind of hoping for the same meal that I had on the Frankurt-Riga flight, because a few meatballs just didn’t cut it.  They did taste good for what it’s worth.  This flight did have one memorable aspect, and that was the young couple sitting next to me.  If I had to venture a guess, I would say early to mid 30′s, and both fairly attractive.  Not too long after takeoff (once electronics are permitted), the woman took out an iPad and the gentleman a magazine.  I think nothing of it as I tried to close my eyes and take a quick nap.  Don’t ask me why, but for some reason I glanced over and caught a glimpse of the movie the woman was watching.  It was a porno movie.  Not just a movie with an adult scene, but an all out X Rated video. The reason I know is that I would look in that direction when the flight attendant walked around with additional beverages and trash cleanup.  The icing on the cake was when I glanced at the gentleman and what he was reading.  Playboy.  It is cool if you enjoy adult entertainment at home, but try to keep it out of public transportation if possible.

Overall, I was happy and impressed with the service provided by Lufthansa.  I wish we would have had an Airbus A319 for the return journey to Frankfurt, as the old Boeing 737-300 feels dated and has much smaller overhead bins.  The food was not impressive, but much appreciated on a flight during a meal time.  I give applause anytime an airline provides something that most do not provide.  We arrived in Frankfurt slightly past our expected arrival time, but overall, another satisfied Lufthansa flyer.

About the Author: Brian Morton

My name is Brian and I am a frequent flyer that loves to travel. I fly over 500k miles each year and love to write about it. Thank you so much for being a loyal reader of TodaysFlyer.com! I look forward to posting more articles that you are sure to love!