In April I was fortunate enough to fly home to Toronto from Vienna with Austrian Airlines on their 767 plane in Business Class. It was an 8.5-hour flight from Vienna International Airport to Toronto’s Pearson International Airport and was the first time I ever flew Business Class on any airline.
Austrian Airlines, which has been making an attempt to rebrand as “myAustrian”, is a member, and owned by, the Lufthansa Group. In the same group of airlines you’ll find Lufthansa, Swiss, Eurowings and SunExpress.
I had flown with Austrian many times before and they are definitely one of the best European airlines, especially when it comes to Business Class flying and the incredible service they provide.
There are a few reasons why I believe Austrian to be one of the best airlines in Europe and especially for international flights to North America.
First, the design and layout of the Business Class cabin was nearly perfect. The seats were ideally spread out, comfortable and came with all the amenities you would need for a long-haul flight.
Whether you want to sit upright to eat your snack or meal, recline partially to read a book or watch a movie, or you want to lay completely flat to catch up on some sleep it is all possible with the Austrian Business Class seating arrangement and seat layout.
Second, the food is incredible. The menu was vast and had plenty of options that catered to even the most pickiest of eaters. The meals and snacks were served promptly and you never had to wait more than a few moments to ask for a drink or anything else you might want during the flight.
The quality of the food was superb and similar, if not better, than what I’ve experienced in 4 and 5 star restaurants across Europe.
Between the comfort and delicious food it’s hard to find anything wrong when you’re flying business class with Austrian Airlines.
If you’re planning on travelling abroad soon you’ll definitely want to check out these tips for long flights.
In my Austrian Airlines Business Class review I plan to cover the following information:
- The Austrian lounge in the Vienna Airport
- A business class cabin review
- My business class seat review along with the best and worst seats in the cabin
- The on-board amenities
- Snacks and Meals
- On-board entertainment
- General in-flight experience
- Overall rating
The Austrian Lounge in the Vienna Airport
If you’re flying out of the Vienna International Airport with a Business Class ticket then you’ll have access to the Austrian Business Lounge.
Including the main Austrian Business Lounge there are a total of seven different lounges at the airport that take up more than 2300 square meters of space.
Travelers will be able to take advantage of the services offered by a HON Circle lounge, a Senator/Star Alliance Gold lounge and the Austrian Business Lounge. From the central lounge lobby you’ll be able to access each of these different lounges.
The Austrian Business Lounge is a great place to relax, grab a bite to eat or get some work done during a layover or before embarking on your flight. I was fortunate enough to spend more than six hours in the lounge during my layover so I can definitely say that I have fully experienced all that the business lounge in Vienna has to offer.
The Austrian Business Lounge has a long, rectangular shape and offers a stunning view of the airport and landing strips. One of the walls is entirely covered with windows so no matter where you are sitting in the lounge you’ll have a great view of the airport below.
I’m not exactly sure of the total amount but I would say that the lounge can hold up to 100 people, but would be quite crowded at that capacity. When I was there I noticed about 25 to 35 people and everyone was able to enjoy private seating and their own space at the dining tables.
In regards to dining there is a single dedicated food station that offers quite a variety of different meal and snack options. There is a serving station where you can choose from a handful of hot foods, a few different soup options, cold food options such as salads and sandwiches, a small bar area with top shelf liquor options and a large fridge stocked full of juices, sodas, beer and water.
Once you have filled your plate you can choose from table seating, barstool seating or various different comfortable, personal couches to enjoy your snack or meal from.
High speed Wi-Fi is available throughout the entire lounge, there is a wide selection of national and international magazines and newspapers available and there are even personal computers that you can use if you aren’t traveling with your own tablet or laptop.
If you’re looking for some more privacy and a cozy, comfortable place to relax there is a small nook at the end of the lounge where you’ll find four rooms separated by a thick curtain. In each room is a leather reclining seat where you can grab a quick nap or just relax in privacy before your flight.
My favorite feature about the Austrian Business Lounge in Vienna is the private shower. You can get a key from the lounge attendant and take a warm shower before your flight. The shower room itself is quite large and, along with showering, you can change your clothes and shave before embarking on your trip.
Overall, the Austrian Business Lounge offers more than enough features, food options and comfort to allow you to enjoy any time spent waiting for your next departure.
Once you’ve left the lounge it’s only a short 5 to 10 minute walk to any of the international departing gates.
The Business Class Cabin
On the Austrian Airlines flight I took on their 767 plane the Business Class was composed of a single, large cabin that was situated directly behind the cockpit. There wasn’t a dedicated First Class cabin on the plane and the passengers sitting in the Economy cabin did not pass through the Business cabin to reach their seats.
The Business Class cabin holds 36 seats in a 1-2-1 configuration. Only the outer seats have direct window access, otherwise all of them are afforded the same comforts.
Each seat lays down completely flat with the foot compartment for each seat located beside or under the seat directly in front of it. With this layout every other window seat is about 0.5m further away from the window than the one in front of it.
While you’ll still have a window view in one of the seats that’s further away you won’t be able to look out of it directly unless you lean completely over the table area that separates you and the window.
The rows don’t line up exactly so you’ll have more than enough privacy from your neighbors and if you’re in the middle seats you’ll be separated from your neighbor by the large table area. Every seat also has its own aisle access that removes the need to climb over anyone if you want to get up and stretch or use the washroom facilities.
The Business Class seating is quite plain in color and uses a dark red and black colorway for the seats. However, the dark seats contrast nicely with the red headrest and item holders along with the off-white interior walls and results in a fresh, luxurious and airy look.
The Business Class Seat
My seat was Seat 7K.
All of the business class seats on the Boeing 767 – 300 planes follow the same characteristics:
- 60 – inches pitch
- 19 – inches width
- 180 – degree lay flat recline
Each seat comes equipped with a large, flat surface where you can work or enjoy your meals from. It folds directly into the table area beside the seat and, while I found it difficult to use the first time, it’s easy to use once you get the hang of it.
Directly beside, and attached to, each seat is an additional large, flat surface that’s perfect for storing your tablet, magazines and in-flight drink while you’re relaxing in your seat.
Attached to this flat surface, located directly below where one of your hands will be resting, are the touchscreen seat controls. From these controls you can easily adjust your seat position between completely upright or lay-flat, or adjust the softness or firmness of your seat cushion.
Rather than being made from plastic foam the Austrian Business Class seats are designed with air-filled chambers that can be quickly adjusted depending on your seating preferences. Along with this adjustable seat cushion is a built-in massage function that will gently massage your bottom and lower back during the flight.
Apart from the touchscreen controls there is a reading lamp that’s conveniently positioned at eye level, access to the meal tray and a power port.
In front of you is a large touchscreen entertainment screen and right below it is the foot compartment where your seat will extend into during its lay-flat positioning.
During the flight, when you’re sitting upright, the seat is very comfortable. When it is extended into its lay-flat positioning however, it’s not as comfortable as you would think.
Sure, the seat fully reclines into a 180-degree flat platform for sleeping but its design doesn’t allow for much moving around and there isn’t much space available to get a good rest.
While the seat is much wider than in Economy class it’s quite low to the ground in its lay-flat positioning and too narrow to be very comfortable. The seat becomes flat by extending into the compartment that’s right below the seat in front of you. Not only does this trap your feet but it makes it seem very claustrophobic while you’re laying down.
Another issue I have with the lay-flat positioning of the seat in Business Class is that the armrests stick up quite high and block the majority of the view you have of the aisle or the space around you. This makes it very hard to adjust yourself while you’re laying down and almost impossible to get up and out of the seat in its lay-flat positioning if you need to use the washroom.
Besides the issue with the lack of space that I experienced with the lay-flat positioning I found the seat itself to be comfortable enough for sleeping. It was firm, the pillows were comfortable and fluffy, the blanket was soft and overall the sleeping experience was about what I expected from Austrian Airlines and sleeping in a confined space on an airplane.
I haven’t flown on any other Business Class fights with any other airline so I’m not sure what the other options are but despite the tight quarters and claustrophobic feel I was still able to sleep quite well during the flight.
Which seats are the best Business Class seats on Austrian Airlines B767 flights?
- The seats in row 2 and row 8 give you the best access to the washrooms and are positioned best in the cabin
- For individuals traveling alone all of the seats along the windows, which are single seats, are the best choice
- If you are traveling with a partner then any of the middle seats between row 2 and row 8 are ideal
Which seats are the worst Business Class seats on Austrian Airlines B767 flights?
- I would recommend avoiding the seats in row 1 and row 9. These seats are close to the washroom or the Economy cabin so the noise or passenger traffic could bother you during the flight.
- I would also recommend avoiding seat 6A and 6K as these seats do not have access to a window
I was very pleased with the amenities that were provided by Austrian Airlines.
Every Business Class passenger is provided with a fluffy pillow and thick blanket for additional comfort during the flight.
A small Business Class amenity kit is also included and contains:
- Long socks
- Sleeping mask
- Travel sized toothbrush and toothpaste
- Hand cream or lotion
- A voucher for the online shop
In the Business Class washroom you’ll find a shaving kit if you feel the need to shave before reaching your destination. It’s also more spacious than the Economy Class washroom and I was pleased to find mood lighting rather than the harsh, bright white light you tend to find in airplanes washrooms.
Right after boarding, once I had reached my seat, I was offered a choice of a variety of welcome drinks. I was able to choose between juice, water or champagne. I opted for the water and a few moments later I was handed a hot face towel to clean my hands and wipe my face before the dinner service began.
Immediately after takeoff, as soon as the fasten seatbelt sign was turned off, a chef came out to take orders for the dinner service.
Before I go over what I had to eat let me explain a little more about Austrian Airlines meal service.
Austrian Airlines is constantly rated as one of the airlines that offers the best tasting and most enjoyable dinner service. Their food is catered by an upscale catering company, DO & CO, that runs many high-class cafés and restaurants throughout Europe and North America.
A menu is provided and, rather than choose specific items to eat, a tray full of all the different starters and desserts is rolled through the cabin and you’re able to pick anything you want from the tray.
You have to choose your main course, I opted for goulash, but if there’s anything else you want you simply point to it and the cabin crew member places it gently on your eating tray.
Along with a delicious meal, you’re provided with a wide variety of different alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks and there are coffee options for when the dinner service is complete.
There are 11 different types of the famous Austrian coffee, Meinl, to choose from and you can enjoy everything from an espresso, latte, cappuccino and anything in between.
I started off with two different starters – soup and a selection of different types of raw and cooked seafood.
For the main course, as I mentioned earlier, I enjoyed an Austrian-style goulash with dumplings.
For dessert I had a small piece of apple strudel that came with some jam, vanilla ice cream and some pieces of fruit. Afterwards I enjoyed a cappuccino from the coffee menu and before laying down to sleep I had a few gin and tonic’s.
1.5 hours before landing a lunch was served. For lunch I opted for the quesadilla with sour cream and guacamole. For dessert I enjoyed a citrus cheesecake and finished my lunch with coffee with milk.
Surprisingly, the quesadilla I had was one of the best I’ve ever tasted and I was quite surprised by the flavor, taste and quality of the food offered by Austrian Airlines during this flight.
Directly in front of the seats is the in-flight entertainment system. I was happy to find a large 15-inch touchscreen system that was well within reach of the seat.
For the entertainment options there was more than 50 different movies available, an even larger variety of TV show options and you could also choose to listen to a handful of different musical options as well.
From the screen you could also learn more about your current flight status such as speed, distance to destination and arrival time.
- Seat: 4/5
- Food: 5/5
- Entertainment: 4.5/5
- Service: 5/5
- Cabin & Crew: 4.5/5
- Overall Experience: 4.5/5
Check this video I made on YouTube about my experience flying Business Class with Austrian Airlines: