So, I was on a trip to explore China, took SriLankan Airlines from Delhi to Beijing and Shanghai to Delhi both transiting through Colombo. China was an amazing experience and I got to visit and experience so many amazing places there, which I would need to talk about in vlogs in future. But, let’s talk about my travel to China and back experience. This review comes out after experiencing not one but 4 flights with SriLankan Airlines.
Before I even start talking about this, if you are a frequent international traveler, you must be aware of One World alliance. Sri Lankan Airlines is a part of the One World Alliance which means points can be added to every bonus program of every airline within the alliance and their lounge accesses wherever possible ..Bingo.
Part 1: Before you Board the Flight : Ground Experience
The first thing probably you’ll notice before even boarding the plane is the warm hospitality of their staff, they would greet you with a warmth and a big smile. If you’re flying business class your experience would be incredible and the process would be flawless.
When traveling from Colombo there’s a separate entry for business class which I have shared with you guys in my YouTube video.
Part 2: Business Class Lounge Experience
Along with the Business Class travel, the additional benefit you get is the Lounge Access, I had an awesome experience at Serendip Lounge twice as I took 2 flights from Colombo. The lounge food is amazing and I specially drooled over the tea choices available …mind-blowing ( don’t forget to try out peppermint and cinnamon teas). Also, a big bonus is the complementary 15 min massage sessions. All the stress from my walking and carrying around bags was gone with the most rewarding foot massages and Ayurvedic balms.
Part 3: Let’s board the plane – Actual flight experience
The seats in all the flights were amazing and for the longer flights I was absolutely delighted to see Reverse Herringbone seats, so you fully recline the seats and make it into a flatbed and get a good night sleep, pillows and blankets are also super comfy to ensure I get a baby’s sleep. The cabin would seem very private and you would barely notice another person during the flight. Another thing I loved was the cubby storage spaces in the cabin, there was space to store most handy stuff like my phone , writing journal etc. Their mood lighting was another cool thing, during the night flights while sleeping I was opening my eyes to starlit ceiling big yess !
Food is the most important aspect of the travel experience esp. for me,
They welcome you with amazing drink choices and warm towel. And that’s just the beginning of the amazing service to follow, their wine and beverage collection was amazing off course I don’t drink so I really don’t know what all was there on the menu.
SriLankan Airlines does have a huge variety of pre-meal order plans to meet special needs of most travelers. Since mine was a really last-minute booking, I had not pre-specified the meal choices before. Being a vegan and a health freak, I so needed special meals, the staff was kind enough to provide meals they mixed and matched to make a meal platter and some of the staff swapped their meals with me so I can eat enough.
Tea was mostly served with Salted Cashew nuts very Signature of Sri Lanka, food was absolutely lip smacking, rich flavored Curry’s in coconut milk, vegetarian meals with so many options and lovely tastes on a plane, sounds so impossible but was true.
To the back of the seat you can find the controls, including the entertainment and seat controls, as well as a 110volt and USB outlet (great to charge your phone or iPad). Headphones were noise cancelling so you really are transported into your entertainment experience.
Choice of movies and programs were amazing, Hollywood, Bollywood and SriLankan all options and a great taste of selection, I did catch up on some Movies during the flights.
But, by far my favourite was the music selection, I was enjoying Beatles and Ravi Shankar while writing my journal and reading SriLankan information magazines
The business class truly took care of everything you can need on a flight, for all the long flights they had slippers, eye masks etc in place. And an amenity kit featured some earplugs, tissues, rose water, lip balm, tooth brush and paste as well as a comb was given for the overnight flight, basics you need before landing. The quality of these products is to die for my personal favourite was the facial mist , super refreshing. Also, the washrooms were well stocked with basics like Hand Cream, sanitizer, Cologne and Mouthwash (not to ignore )
Hospitality and Warmth
I bet you can find airlines which are much more luxurious and have better gadgets and amenities and may be cheaper (though I have my doubts), But, hands down something SriLankan would take lead on is their warm hospitality, they make you feel you’re home. All the flights had this thing in common, whether I was sleeping or I had meal issues they were jumping out of their skins to help and make sure my journey was comfortable
The Flight Managers were amazing and took so much time to have the conversation with me. I spent almost an hour talking to the Cabin Manager who would constantly get me cups of tea or drinks and I really appreciated the crew taking time for me, he took time to explain about SriLankan culture and gave me some books to read, before landing also the staff took rounds to check on me and sometimes insisted I ate properly as we were landing during odd hours and I might not have gotten food. This mama like care is legit lit.
Part 4: Transit Options
Both the times I transited through Colombo, one overnight transfer and on my way back to India, I decided to stay back for one day to enjoy SriLanka . Sri Lanka has no visa for upto 2 days all you need is to fill an ETA online 24 hours prior. The transit hotels were comfortable, luxurious and they had amazingly tasty food.
I love traveling but for me long flights is the toughest part of the whole travel experience, hands down Sri Lankan makes the most painful part pleasurable, and I would mostly attribute it to their hospitality & culture, that may be a little impossible for other airlines to beat, in my opinion SriLanka is at par with any 5 Star Airline in the world, I guess we’ll see them reach those heights in the years to come.
Happy Journey !!
Delhi – Colombo UL 0196
Colombo – Beijing UL 0868
Shanghai- Colombo UL 0867
Colombo – Delhi UL 0195
Aircrafts: A330 & 320
Shot on iPhone7