LOT Premium Economy in the Boeing 787-9 to Chicago
For this year's annual vacation we decided to visit the Midwest of the USA. In line with our travel plans, LOT Polish Airlines published an offer for the Premium Economy to Chicago. In the review you can find out what a secret tip the LOT Premium Economy in the Boeing 787-9 is on long-haul flights.
We spent the waiting time between our arrival at Warsaw Airport and our onward flight to Chicago in the LOT Elite Club Lounge (Review). About 45 minutes before boarding we left the lounge so that our son could really let off some steam on a great playground before the nine hours flight.
LOT Premium Economy in the Boeing 787-9 – Boarding LO3
We arrived at Gate 23N on time for the beginning of the boarding at 4 pm. Our plane, an almost brand new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner (registration SP-LSA), was fortunately already ready at the gate. However, the boarding was delayed by about 30 minutes. Meanwhile the departure area filled up and there was a complete mess as some guests were still asked for a special security check ("SSSS" - Secondary Security Screening Selection). In the end, however, it was ensured that the boarding was carried out according to booking class or frequent flyer status. As guests of the Premium Economy we were allowed to be the first on board.
LOT Premium Economy in the Boeing 787-9 – Cabin
For me it was the first flight in a Boeing 787-9. Already when entering the cabin I was surprised by the pleasant space feeling. At first glance, however, the Premium Economy did not look really contemporary, but looked more like a business class of the 90s. The 21 wide and very thick padded seats were arranged in a 2-3-2 configuration in three rows. At 106 centimetres, the distance between the seats was almost seven centimetres larger than in the LOT Boeing 787-8.
In contrast to the "old-fashioned" seating, the colour-changing LED ceiling lighting provided a pleasant feeling of space. In addition, the cabin air did not seem as dry as in other airplanes.
LOT Premium Economy in the Boeing 787-9 – Seat
In the first moment the seat in the LOT Premium Economy reminded me strongly of the Comfort Class of Turkish Airlines and was covered with a blue-grey patterned fabric. This made the seat look a bit old-fashioned in my eyes. But thanks to the good upholstery, the wide seat (approx. 50 cm), adjustable footrest and backrest the sitting was very comfortable. Both the table and the monitor for the in-flight entertainment were stored in the 15 cm wide armrests. In addition, two universal sockets were installed between the seats. The position for the remote control was unfavourable. During the flight we kneeled several times and switched on the reading light, for example. Furthermore, the seat with a 25 centimeter wide pocket on the back of the front seat offered very little storage space.
As we were travelling together with our two-year-old son, we had already decided to book the middle three seats in the sixth row. On each of our seats there was a package wrapped in foil, which consisted of a blue blanket and a bulky pillow.
LOT Premium Economy in the Boeing 787-9 – Service
When the boarding was completed, the welcome drinks were served. We had the well-known choice of orange juice, water or sparkling wine. I found it very good that the drinks were served in glasses instead of plastic cups. The drink was accompanied by a packet of salted peanuts. Shortly after the start I exchanged the glass of sparkling wine for a delicious Polish beer.
Together with the menu, a small amenity kit was also distributed. The blue bag contained everything you need for a long distance flight: Socks, sleeping glasses, toothbrush and earplugs. The contents were of inferior quality, but perfectly sufficient for a premium economy.
About one hour after the start in Warsaw - we just crossed the Baltic Sea towards Norway - the flight attendants started the service. As in the lounge, DO&CO was responsible for catering on board. In addition to salad, the starter included prawns served with cucumber salad, chili mayonnaise and pea sprouts. For the main course we had the choice between beef cheeks in pepper sauce served with potato dumplings and vegetables or chicken in BBQ sauce served with fried potatoes and grilled asparagus. We both decided on the beef cheeks. For dessert we had a piece of cake.
The whole menu tasted very good and was definitely full. By the way, our son got an extra children's menu, which we had also reserved online. He was served rice with meatballs in tomato sauce. We also had freshly cut cucumber, paprika and tomatoes. Our son found the most interesting fruit plate, which he threw himself at first.
During the flight we were well taken care of by the flight attendants. At regular intervals they came through the cabin and asked for drinks or offered snacks. Before we landed in Chicago, we were served something to eat. Here we had the choice between three dishes: Duck breast, chicken or spinach lasagna. I chose the duck breast this time.
LOT Premium Economy in the Boeing 787-9 – Entertainment
The entertainment monitor was tucked away in the armrest. The range of films and series was very clear and there were a total of eight languages available. The number of German-language films was just acceptable. Live TV was not available, but some series, games and playlists were available for music playback. The monitor also had a USB socket for charging its personal mobile devices. It was disappointing that LOT did not have an in-flight WiFi. In my opinion, there is a lot of catching up to do here.
Arrival in Chicago
After we left Warsaw late, we arrived at Chicago O'Hare airport almost on time. The entry into the USA lasted an eternity again. But even the longest 45 minutes were made and we could take the airport train from terminal 5 to terminal 2 after receiving our luggage. For the first night I had reserved a room at the Hilton Chicago O'Hare directly at the airport. Thanks to Hilton Diamond Status we got two bottles of water and an upgrade to a room with a view of the airport. In spite of my tiredness I sat at the window for a while and took some long-term pictures of the hustle and bustle on the apron.
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Rating of the LOT Premium Economy in the Boeing 787-9
The LOT Premium Economy is an absolute insider tip in terms of price/performance. The selection of food and drinks by the caterer DO&CO was very good. Only the service could have been more friendly and courteous. Even though the overall impression of the design is quite old-fashioned, the wide and well-padded seats were very comfortable and the adjustable footrest and backrest made sitting very comfortable even on long journeys.