I flew United Airlines back from Munich to San Francisco and was excited to finally get to experience the Polaris product. It isn’t a groundbreaking product (especially now) but it’s a solid product. The seats have ample space, easily accessible charging ports, and comfortable bedding. I’d say it’s a decent product that certainly made the 11 hour flight back home more comfortable.
I had checked in for my flights back in Florence and done a document check so I thought I was cleared to go straight through to my gate. After going through passport control and spending some time in the Lufthansa Business Class Lounge, I headed to my gate. However, they were doing another document check before you could reach your gate.
The process itself wasn’t very streamlined as when I arrived, they only had 1 agent checking for Covid tests. Business class passengers were check before being allowed to move forward while others were being checked at the gate. It just seemed to me like there could have been a more efficient system to get passengers through especially because the reason for the different lines wasn’t communicated to anyone and we were all stuck wondering what was going on.
By the time I got through the document checks, boarding had already begun. I chose seat 9A which was the first seat in the second, smaller section of the business class cabin. Waiting at my seat were the amenity kit and Saks pillows and duvets. The layout on the 777-200 is a 1-2-1 layout. The middle seats have divider that can be lifted for more privacy if you don’t know the person sitting next to you. The window seats are staggered so you’ll want an odd number seat to sit closer to the window and further from the aisle.
The amenity kit had everything expected with lip balm, eye mask, lotion, etc. All of it came in a nice pouch that I could easily see myself repurposing for some other use in the future.
There was a fair amount of storage space but it wasn’t a lot. However, I can’t really complain since there were little cubbies like under the IFE screen where I could put my phone as well as charge it with the USB outlet.
The seat also had buttons to move the seat around and a dial that could easily move the seat into different positions.
There was also a remote for the IFE screen but you could also use touchscreen on the IFE. Next to the remote was the outlet as well as the main storage space that also had a small vanity mirror.
Overall the seat was comfortable and the footwell was large enough for me to lie down without feeling cramped.
The flight was almost full and it looked like all of the business class seats were occupied except 2. Boarding didn’t take long at all and we departed on time. About an hour into our flight, lunch was served. I ordered the short ribs with rice and it was actually pretty edible. I know the bar isn’t always set very high when it comes to airline food but I thought it was pretty tasty. Would I consider it at the top of the list of airline meals I’ve ever eaten? No. It may have had more to do with the fact that I hadn’t really eaten anything of sbstance before the flight but I didn’t hate the meal.
After that the light were dimmed and those that could went to sleep. Considering it was a day flight, I don’t know how many people actually got to sleep (especially considering a group of people decided to hang out by the galley mid flight) but considering my day started at 3:30 that morning, I was ready to at least close my eyes for a bit.
Midway through the flight, an attendant came through the cabin to offer chips and snacks but nothing of significance. What was odd was that no matter where I looked, there was no menu available to see what was being offered. Not that it was all that important to see what was offered but it would have been nice to see what options were availble.
Since I have a tough time sleeping on planes, I mostly just dozed in and out of consciousness while watching a few movies. Eventually I just decided to get some work done as mindlessly watching movies was getting old. I’d say at about the 7 hour mark of the flight, most of the people in business class were up and chatting even though the lights were still turned off. It’d been a while since I was on a daytime flight like this where the entirety of the flight is in daylight so I’m sure many onboard were feeling a little restless.
Descent to San Francisco
I would like to say that San Francisco is one of my favorite US cities to visit and I’m not sure if there’s a more picturesque city to fly into on a clear day. The problem is rarely is there a clear, sunny day in San Francisco and the city is usually covered in a fog or some clouds (at least when I’ve flown in). This time, we just got lucky and were treated with some amazing views. You just can’t beat views like this!
The flight was ok. Polaris may never have been cutting edge when compared to business class on other airlines but it certainly was a major step forward from the type they had before (anyone remember the 4 seats across while facing the passenger in front/behind you as a business class seat?). However, in today’s arena, where airlines are making amazing strides in comfort and style, these seats are certainly showing their age.