Getting to Japan from the UK presents you with a number of alternatives. Go direct and pay the earth or transfer on route and pay the price of having to wait a few hours extra and feeling slightly worse due to the take-offs and landings. Like most flying decisions, price at the time of booking dictates! Sigh this time being no different. We chose SAS (Scandinavian) via Copenhagen. In previous visits we've used BA, Virgin (sadly stopping their direct service to Narita), JAL and ANA. As well as Austrian, KLM and Lufthansa! All very different, all however serving the same purpose; getting you there in one piece and keeping you entertained for the 9 hours + you are on their plane. So how were SAS, well certainly not the worse and certainly not the best. So here are the pluses and minuses.
* Friendly service (very polite and made us feel welcome. Also very child friendly. Was it because they were mature flight attendants? Possibly.
* Entertainment - still on a loop system, on demand arrives next year (getting fussy).
* The food - basic (dinner was ok, you get one drink free with it (you pay thereafter) and was just about edible. Breakfast was very basic, a bit too low cost in appearance for my liking.)
* The seats - really need upgrading, at times felt like I was sitting on a bit of wood! (New aircraft arriving in the next two to three years.)
* Temperature in the cabin always felt too hot.
At Copenhagen there was a delay (2hrs), maintenance we were told. We received coupons for some snacks and with it being a relatively quiet airport (picture below) and with enough space for the kids to play safely, it wasn't a bind. I will just say here that Vienna remains my top choice for transfers, probably because it is ultra quiet and has these brilliant lounge seats you can chill out on. So all in allit wasn't too bad. We'll see on the return leg. I'm sure that with the upgrades SAS will improve on some of the areas highlighted and as an alternative on the transfer route it works well. No changing of terminals with this one, in fact the connecting flight was at the next gate but with a four hour wait in between flights. So we're here....time to explore and see what Japan will offer us on this trip.
Please feel free to ask any questions about Japan or give your opinion of SAS. Would love to know your experiences.