My Experiences With Long Flights And Business Class – OpEd


Throughout my long career, I have traveled by air frequently, often embarking on very long journeys, likely numbering in the hundreds. Out of all these trips, only twice have I flown business class: once with Lufthansa between Ankara and Houston, and once with Turkish Airlines (THY) between Istanbul and London. All my other flights have been in economy class. In recent years, I have been flying more often with Pegasus, a low-cost airline, which does not offer business class, so I always fly economy with them.

Recently, our national women’s volleyball team expressed their frustration on social media about not being given business class tickets for their flight to the United States. Given their average height of 1.80 meters, their expectation to fly business class for such a long journey is understandable. THY, which spends money on numerous other areas, made them fly 13 hours in economy class. It would have been appropriate for our national athletes to fly business class so they could arrive at their destination without undue fatigue before an important match. In this case, it seems THY made a mistake.

Personally, I am accustomed to flying economy class and it doesn’t bother me. However, I believe our national athletes deserve better travel conditions. The success of athletes is directly related to the facilities provided to them, and such details can positively impact their performance.

What do you think? There is an example of Angela Merkel flying on a commercial flight to Brazil when the official aircraft was unavailable. I won’t comment on our own officials in comparison.

Haluk Direskeneli

Haluk Direskeneli, is a graduate of METU Mechanical Engineering department (1973). He worked in public, private enterprises, USA Turkish JV companies (B&W, CSWI, AEP, Entergy), in fabrication, basic and detail design, marketing, sales and project management of thermal power plants. He is currently working as freelance consultant/ energy analyst with thermal power plants basic/ detail design software expertise for private engineering companies, investors, universities and research institutions. He is a member of Chamber of Turkish Mechanical Engineers Energy Working Group.

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