Flying Across the Atlantic With Condor Airlines

Flying Across the Atlantic With Condor Airlines

By |2016-07-21T23:47:07-04:00October 15th, 2012|Transportation|55 Comments

View from Condor flight
Despite having promised myself dozens of times over the years to never book a flight, bus or train that required me to set my alarm for anything earlier than 6:00am (early morning is not my favorite time of day), I continue to fail miserably at this simple task.

So last night I tried to do something different before my early morning flight out of Bucharest. I didn’t sleep at all, instead choosing to remain awake until 3:45am, drinking glass after glass of vin fiert (boiled wine with pepper, orange slices and cinnamon) with my friends while talking about such topics as gall bladder cleanses, sales techniques and peacocks.

And then I showered, finished packing and hopped into a taxi at 4:30am, making my way to the Otopeni International Airport. Eighteen hours later, I arrived in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, feeling remarkably well-rested and energetic.

I remember almost nothing of the first leg of my journey, Lufthansa Flight 1423 from Bucharest to Frankfurt, Germany. I guess I boarded the plane at around 6:00am and I do recall exchanging a quick ‘Guten Morgen’ with the flight attendant who was greeting the passengers at the entrance to the aircraft. But after that, all I know is that I woke up when the plane hit the runaway in Frankfurt. In between, I can only assume that I did what I normally do while in such a deep sleep, which is drool all over the place. Neither my shirt nor chin were wet when I awoke but I had been asleep for so long that they probably had enough time to dry.

Still exhausted, I stumbled around the Frankfurt Airport for a couple of hours, quite surprised to find a severe lack of eating options, a mere 30 minutes of available free WiFi and terminal buildings with almost no seating at all. My hope of sitting down at a cafe and getting some work done for a couple of hours remained a mere hope as I was forced, instead, to buy a crappy sandwich and eat it while leaning up against a wall. (This airport was quite a disappointment for an airport that is Europe’s third busiest.)

As a result, I couldn’t wait for my ten and a half hour flight to Fort Lauderdale to begin, which is saying something considering that my flight was with Condor Airlines, an airline that does not suffer from a shortage of negative reviews online.

Eventually, I passed through the security check near the gate after giving a demonstration of how my XShot camera extender works to a security officer (he must have thought it looked like a small, yet dangerous, piece of weaponry). And after a short bus ride to the aircraft, which was parked away from the terminal building, I stepped foot onto the Boeing 767-300 that would take me across the Atlantic Ocean.

I then promptly sat down in my window seat, 31A, next to a friendly German guy, and of course, after we exchanged quick greetings, I immediately fell asleep once again.

Condor Flight 7078

However, when I awoke from this second nap of the day, I was a bit upset to learn that only one hour of the ten and a half hour flying time had passed, but at least there was a hot lunch sitting on my tray table, a lunch that looked far more impressive than I was expecting given those not-so-positive reviews I had read.

And yes, the lunch was quite decent and in comparison to most other airlines, it was actually well above average. (In fact, when compared to US-based airlines, this was an amazing meal!) Once the lunch ended, the many screens inside the plane began showing a movie (it was quite fitting that the first film was “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” since I’ll be in India next week), drinks were served, reading material was handed out and I was having a grand ol’ time on board.

Sure, the seats were a tad smaller than on other airlines but I can’t say it was uncomfortable at all. The staff on board were extremely friendly and helpful, snacks and two full meals were served during the flight, passengers could help themselves to drinks (non-alcoholic) at any time, the blankets were warm and the pillows comfy.

Apart from the time I was walking down the aisle to the bathroom in order to brush my teeth and ended up stepping on the bare foot of a man who was sound asleep in his seat, I’d say this flight was a complete success.

Inside Condor Flight 7078

And I even got to fly over Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Canada for probably the twentieth time in my life (maybe I should visit this destination in person one of these days as I have a feeling it would be quite a ‘middle of nowhere‘ kind of place) and right over my home city of Boston as well, which is, at about 32,000 feet (9700 meters), about the closest I’ve come to actually being back there in about four years or so.

So that’s how it was to fly with Condor Airlines, an airline that is part of the Thomas Cook Group, and an airline that offers some intriguing long-distance routes around the world at fares that range from competitive to very cheap ($300 one way from Frankfurt to Fort Lauderdale). I certainly don’t have a single thing to complain about from this journey and I have no doubt I’ll be flying with them again at some point.

For now, I shall spend the next twelve days visiting family and friends here in the US before crossing the Atlantic Ocean one more time next Thursday, this time with Air India, on a direct flight from New York City to New Delhi.

Have you ever flown with Condor Airlines? Any other good airlines out there that many people don’t know about?

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  1. Alisha Graefe July 25, 2016 at 4:16 pm - Reply

    Hi! I am flying from Portland to Berlin in August and was wondering if Condor’s “free baggage allowance” is measured at the gate? And are they putting those bags under the plane? Just making sure my luggage will be appropriate.

  2. AG July 1, 2016 at 12:54 am - Reply

    It has been my worst experience ever.

    No e-tickets issued, almost lost first flight (SFO-SEATTLE), once I arrived to Seattle there was bad communication, no gate information, rude staff members couldn’t help, and I ended losing the flight to Europe in Seattle and nobody was able to help me. I fly constantly, I’m member of AA, Delta and United mileage programs, couldn’t find a suitable flight with them so I decided to try Condor, even the Alaska airlines people told me I shouldn’t use them (the first flight was with Alaska airlines and they were helping me at SFO because I had NO e-tickets issued). This is the first time that I experience this kind of unprofessional and awful organized service. NEVER use it.

  3. Mauricio October 2, 2015 at 9:21 am - Reply

    HORRIBLE EXPERIENCE! Airline outsourced plane/flight to a charter company. Complaints haven’t been addressed in over 8 weeks.

    On the flight over the Atlantic, my girlfriend experienced severe heart pain and was treated by the crew in mid flight [given oxygen, nitroglycerin pills, etc]. After several hours of treatment and consultation with on ground medical team, the airline and crew made a decision to make an emergency landing in Gander, Canada so that emergency medical team could board the plane and further examine her.

    Once on the ground, the medical team decided that she needed to go to a hospital for further testing. During this time, the onboard crew assured us that everything would be fine. Asked us to focus primarily on going to hospital and addressing the medical emergency. They assured us that the airline would help us get home to Florida after the emergency was over and she was discharged from the hospital.

    Unfortunately nobody from the airline [Condor or Omni] was very helpful. When we contacted Omni, they said that since they subcontract from Condor, that we must contact Condor for them to help us. When we contacted Condor, they said there was nothing that they could do to help and that we were on our own to find our own way back to Florida. We were told that they don’t fly out of Gander. We knew that, since the reason we had landed there was a medical emergency. We thought that maybe they could help with rebooking us with another airline. No, they would not help with that. We had to find our own hotel and our own flights home. So while at the hospital, we had to find our own hotel and our own flights home.

    The only suggestion that they made, was that we could submit the receipt for everything to Condor after the flight home and ask for reimbursement. Now that we are home, we called Condor and are being told that we should contact Omni. We keep feeling like both airlines are giving us the runaround. WHAT A HORRIBLE EXPERIENCE!! Not only did we have to deal with a very stressful medical emergency, but later had to deal with the stress of finding lodging and trying to find and pay for our flight back to Florida while in a totally different country! And now neither airline wants to take responsibility for helping us again in trying to recover our expenses to get back home to Florida.

    We cannot believe how poorly we were treated and left us stranded in another country!! We filed a complaint with Condor 2 months ago and they do not respond. When we call to follow up they don’t help. Won’t allow us to talk to a manager and keep telling us to wait because complaints can take over 6 weeks to respond to. Although it has been 8 weeks, they still won’t offer further assistance. I am sure that they hope that we will just forget about this and give up.

    This airline is completely untrustworthy. You arrive at the airport and find out they outsourced the flight to a charter company with old planes. And god forbid, you have an unplanned event….do not expect this airline to help or even address any complaints. We would NEVER recommend this airline to anyone and will NEVER fly this airline again!! They are horrible!!

    • LolaM July 15, 2016 at 10:28 am - Reply

      Sorry – where does this entitelement come from? Did they not make an emergency stop for you? Do you know how much that costs an airline? They went out of their way for you and you are complaining that they didn’t provide with with free fare? I mean, seriously.

  4. Busayo September 24, 2015 at 2:23 pm - Reply

    Hi earl, please I plan on using condor in traveling from Barbados to UK … I just heard of the airline but it’s got a lot of negative comment, I just want to be sure am making the right choice as it fits my finances.

    • Wandering Earl September 25, 2015 at 1:32 pm - Reply

      Hey Busayo – It’s just one flight, it won’t be terrible. If it fits your finances, then it’s perfect.

  5. Dr. Mike August 27, 2015 at 5:35 pm - Reply

    I live in SE Florida and we may get hit by a hurricane NLT Monday. I have a flight leaving late Tuesday. I called Condor and asked their rep what if I cannot get to the Fort Lauderdale airport because of storm damage and the plane leaves without me. I asked him what would happen if this flight was canceled. He could not answer either question. He said to call after the storm strikes. It was of little use to tell this negative IQ person that we will more than likely loose power and communications. I asked this guy about the Lufthansa flight they booked for me from Italy. I wanted to know about a refund for this flight if I cannot make the flight. He said I was on my own. I have never had an airlines treat me this way.

    I booked a business Condor round trip ticket last May. In August Condor sends me an email saying they contracted the flight to OMNI air and there is no business class. They also informed me that instead of returning to Fort Lauderdale as originally booked the plane will land in Miami. Wonderful. I guess I should be glad the plane was not diverted even further away. I wonder why the plane cannot land in Fort Lauderale ? I paid for a Condor flight and they put me on a no-name charter plane.

    My last comment is about Condor’s website. I have never seen an airline have such a terrible website like Condor’s. I regret already using this airlines.

  6. Benoit June 11, 2015 at 2:57 pm - Reply

    Not so happy about Condor.

    When we tried to check-in on our return flight from Cancun to Frankfurt, we were told that we were not on the passenger list.
    The check-in counter employees told us that the travel agency had failed to book the segment.
    We were then left without any assistance at midnight in the Cancun airport. We had to find a hotel for the night.
    We got in touch with our travel agency to ask for a solution, and when they contacted Condor Airline services, the agency was told that we were no-show. This was a lie.
    Now, according to our travel agency someone at Condor recognized an internal mistake and a solution was found for our return trip to Europe the day after without additional cost. On this return flight we met other passenger who were supposed to be on the same flight the day before. According to them, the flight was overbooked and they had been compensated accordingly. We found out that we had been less lucky and lied to.
    I raised a complaint with Condor Airlines customer service, and got a standard policy copy paste as the only answer, after 3 weeks. No compensation.
    Treating customers this way is unacceptable, and I can only advise people to avoid this company.

  7. Jesse August 9, 2014 at 11:30 pm - Reply

    Any one know about their luggage fees? Overweight? I have them in an email seems high

  8. Iris June 22, 2014 at 8:49 pm - Reply

    I just booked with Condor, from Fortaleza to Frankfurt than Bergen (Lufthansa), and it’ll be my first international flight. Narrow seats, you say? Oh man… 🙁

  9. Kristine May 29, 2014 at 6:25 pm - Reply

    Oh Boy do I have a story… I booked a business class ticket for my boss to fly from Vegas to Prague today and on Monday I emailed as requested to order his veggie meal and seat assignment. I got a response on Tuesday and then again on Wednesday. I called to confirm he was good with his meal and they told me they never received a request and that it was too late to order his meal but that they always have additional veggie meals and to not worry about it. A few hours later I received an email saying they confirmed his veggie meal. We are talking a 19 hour flight so he will be hungry. My boss just text me and they have no meal for him. He showed them the email that was sent and they told him there was nothing they could do for him now. I called to see what was up and the customer service people on the 800 number hung up on me when I asked why they confirmed and would not do something to help the situation. He is scheduled to fly home on this airline and I will for sure be looking for another airline. I will never book any of the 100 employees we have on this airline again. Stupid customer service from Condor Airlines.

  10. Djordje March 17, 2014 at 12:32 am - Reply

    I’m too late to join this party. Down below is a review I wrote two years ago but never published it anywhere.

    I flew with Condor in 2011 from Seattle to Frankfurt. Things went OK. No delays or other issues. Very uncomfortable seats though, but a decent amount of space for my knees (6 ft, 190 lbs). All in all I was not unhappy.

    Then on 08.23. of this year (2012) my wife and our 3-yr old daughter were supposed to be on the flight 4049 from Seattle to Frankfurt at 6.05 pm. Five hours later they were told the flight was cancelled. The staff at the airport wouldn’t say much more than that the passengers should call a phone number in Chicago tomorrow morning at 9 AM. In five hours at the airport, they were not offered a glass of water, let alone a snack. Nothing. That same night I called Condor’s main number and asked for more information about the flight. I was told to go to the airport and ask for more info there. When I said I’d just come back from there, they hung up. They hung up on both my wife and I, three times that night and twice in the morning. In the morning the Chicago number was useless (when you selected the right number you call would get dropped every time). Since Condor wasn’t helping I had to buy new tickets due to my wife’e further travel arrangements. Imagine buying a ticket 3 hours before the flight and how much that costs. In the end we ended up paying an additional $1200. That was the most expensive “Condor” flight ever. They refunded the money, but to this day their complaints department refuses to respond to my emails. It’s been 3 weeks now, and except for an automated email in German, I have not received any response. Dead silence.

    So you draw your own conclusions. If anything unexpected happens, you are on your own. Condor will not be there to help you or to listen to you. They actually refuse to talk to you. They simply hang up on you.

  11. Jana December 28, 2013 at 12:16 am - Reply

    Hi.Can I ask you how was your experience? I just booked flight with them.Going Seattle – Frankfurt- Prague in June with 2 small children.Haven’t read the bad reviews before,so now I am fishing for other/positive experiences. I don’t mind smaller seats – just hoping for friendly/helpful stuff because of flying alone with the kids.

    • Wandering Earl January 2, 2014 at 6:05 pm - Reply

      Hey Jana – My experience was great. I had nothing to complain about at all. The staff were friendly, the food good, the comfort level better than expected.

      • Gi March 10, 2016 at 10:56 am - Reply

        If your comments are so positive and you seem to be reaffirming so to negative commenters, despite the overwhelming complaints, one must wonder if some of your “Wandering Earl” flights are sponsored by Condor.

        • Wandering Earl March 15, 2016 at 5:53 am - Reply

          Hey Gi – I’ve never taken a sponsored flight with Condor. I paid for my tickets with my own money and have never been in touch with anyone at Condor.

  12. doc August 26, 2013 at 7:12 am - Reply

    Condor airlines? Forget it. Recent work trip – great flight Boston/Paris on Air France, and then to Rome – no problems. Six days later, headed on the same flight you mentioned above, Rome/Frankfurt by Lufthansa, and then got on Condor to Ft. Lauderdale, because my company thought it would be a good way to save money. Non-stop did you say? Not hardly! First stop was an emergency landing on Terceira in the Azores, thanks to an electrical fire which filled the cabin with reeking, eye-stinging smoke. No luggage — nothing. No toiletries, no change of clothing. Very exciting – firetrucks, screaming passengers, cops, the whole bit. Put us up in a hotel overnight, 6 p.m. the next day, they pick us up again, take us to a new airplane. Again headed for Ft. Lauderdale — but alas, some onboard malfunction made them stop over in Bermuda instead, for several hours. This time, they wouldn’t let anyone off the airplane – fun, huh? Then, they take off again, but by now, it’s too late for Ft. Lauderdale since the customs crew had gone off duty. They dropped us off in Miami at 4 a.m.! No way could I drive — too exhausted. Took a $200 taxi ride home to West Palm Beach and the driver freaked out when we got there, because I live up a little, dark country one-lane road, and I guess he thought I was going to mug him. Refused to take me to my driveway. Had to drag my luggage the last eighth of a mile. Ahhhh, the end of a perfect day – Condor? Never again

    • Wandering Earl August 26, 2013 at 9:26 am - Reply

      Hey doc – That certainly sounds like a crappy experience. But in the end, every airline has problems from time to time and I’ve been on plenty of major airlines over the years that have turned into a situation quite similar to the one you mentioned. One of the worst trips I’ve had was with Singapore Airlines which is usually considered one of the best in the world. It happens, that’s just part of flying.

  13. bogsider July 24, 2013 at 11:50 am - Reply

    Hi Earl,
    Thanks for the info on Condor. I will be flying out of Seattle at the end of August. I bought my one-way ticket to the Czech Republic a few months ago the same way you bought yours then I read the reviews of Condor Airlines. I almost decided to walk to Frankfurt until I read of your pleasant experience. I feel a wee bit better after reading but long flights always take their toll on me and my creaky bones.

  14. dena July 21, 2013 at 9:06 pm - Reply

    Hey Earl–

    Great post. Any feedback on quality of aircraft? I’m one of those nervous flying types, that unfortunately finds herself flying a ton for work. Never flown on Condor and next week will be flying from Vancouver to Frankfurt…I try to stay with big name carriers where possible but this was the only option. Any idea on age of planes, track record, etc?

    Cheers, Dena

    • Wandering Earl July 22, 2013 at 3:42 am - Reply

      Hey Dena – I have no idea about the age of the planes but I think their track record is fine. It might not be a big name but with the routes/countries they fly to, their standards have to be right up there will all the others.

  15. Barbara Butner June 10, 2013 at 7:19 pm - Reply

    Hi, would like to thank you for the information about Condor flight from Seattle to Frankfurt… this will be my 1st flight on Condor, usually fly United.. it will be interesting I think.. wasn’t crazy to hear that the seats are smaller, as I inevitable end up in the middle seat between two very overweight persons….. I’m usually the peanut butter between 2 slices of bread…. looking forward to the flight.. thanks again.

  16. Mel May 4, 2013 at 6:36 am - Reply

    Hi, I just booked a flight with Condor (and then read a bunch of bad reviews-oops!) Just wondering approximately how much does it cost to upgrade to premium economy or comfort class?

    • Wandering Earl May 8, 2013 at 2:18 pm - Reply

      Hey Mel – I’m not sure, you’ll have to check with the airlines. But I found their normal economy class to be perfectly comfortable.

  17. Erin March 5, 2013 at 2:21 am - Reply

    I flew Malaysia Airlines to Kuala Lumpur and to Paris, they were absolutely excellent, they had friendly staff, the best seats and blankets, AMAZING food, and were extremely helpful, definitely fly with them should you get the chance one day 🙂

  18. Romeo November 3, 2012 at 5:22 am - Reply

    First I need to thank you for reminding me about that marvelous piece of equipment I had and never thought to use it in my travels, the XShot camera extender. I bought it for the sole purpose to shot myself during my snowboard adventures, but after reading your reviews I found it to be a great friend on all my travels.
    We shared together special moments in many exciting places… It gave me an edge over the crowds at concerts and other gatherings… Because of it I never felt alone when I needed a buddy to take me a shot from a crazy angle…
    Last few months we became inseparable on our travels, I even found a special place for it in a pocket just outside of my backpack, near my umbrella and other easy to get gadgets.
    I found it to be a perfect match for my mirrorless camera with tilting screen and taking pictures from indecent angles is a pleasure. It always attracted smile when it came to full length and rises above heads.
    Like you, I had to entertain many security officers on airports, to demonstrate his talents, to fake some smiles or tears on imminent breakups. I discovered that it was easier to keep it in an incestuous connection with my camera during these dramatic times. Almost all the officers advised me to store it on my checked bags, but I usually don’t have one. I basically life from my carryon backpack.
    During my casual travels I enjoy spending time wandering around with a local bus, walking a hidden street, catching the music of foreign languages in busy market, taking pictures between the feet of an equestrian statue… anything but warming the airport seats. So I usually try to time my arrival at airport 30 minutes before flight departure. Thanks to online checking and light packing I had enough time so far for passing securities and grabbing a Coke before my late boarding. That’s something I would like advertised and maybe I’ll pay extra for a flight. Late boarding, spending less time seated :D. I usually fight to be the last one boarded on a plane. Or better, for cheap flight that uses a bus to get passengers from the gate to the plane, being the last on the bus it’s a blessing because I get the first to choose my seat on the plane. I enjoy my late boarding habits 😀

    After a crazy week chasing romans ghosts and catholic angels on countless temples and sicilian churches, I decided to get lazy my last Saturday afternoon under the warm october sun and get a taste of Mediterranean salt. It was so intoxicating so I felt the urge to spend more days, even weeks smelling fresh baked Arancini… but the alarm tore me up from my dream and reminded about the flight. Two connecting buses raced to be late and to have reduced service and entire Catania city conspired to hide well his taxis; I can’t even remember seeing one on it’s streets. But the time was flying fast and I had also to fly in less than an hour and from more than 20 miles away. A blessed, lonely on the planet, travel guide revealed me behind a majestic dome the taxi honey pot, that was buzzing with two cabs. I didn’t care that the fare to airport costs more than the one to Cyprus and the cosa nostra drivers scared the shit out of my XShot … the smallest cab, a SUV was swinging in italian traffic. Oh.. but what moments of big turmoil in the city, and the brave cab anytime found a shortcut or a way on sidewalks to pass parked obstacles… the camera extender was so socked that he forgot to help me record these moments and I let only the closest window to take a print of my face… The extender was freezing in despair… it tried to hide under a safety belt, but the sweat of previous passengers made it protect his smell deep on my backpack. Only the time was running faster than my driver…. but my cab won and I had 25 more minutes when I stepped out at the airport gates.
    And then I realized where all the cars were hurrying .. to get a spot on the line for the security officer. It seemed that whole Sicily was there … but the italians are forgiving and with many apologies, smiles and ‘mi scuzi’ I was able to skip the lines. Never have I spent so long, almost 15 minutes to see the guard. And never the guard gave me such subversive look. Passing on the security gate I heard the cry of my Sony Nex without his lovely extender… and was the last thing I heard before a thunderstorm of italian poetry.

    At first I thought that it was something romantic, that the guard who felt my body developed some attraction for me, but it was the XShot who received his love. And the officer felt so hard for my extender, that no argument could save our relationship. My camera showed her engaging ring from my extender, demonstrated some kamasutric poses … but no, the guard was gelous and he needed to have it… I was preparing my best act and the stewardess was calling my name … I shared so many good times with my extender… but I wanted also to have some adventures with that Airbus 320… so I had to choose …

    Now it’s just a memory about a short adventure with a plane above the biggest islands of bluest sea… I had to calm down my camera… it couldn’t believe… it was a beautiful relationship… it never felt the end was near… I had to do something, I introduced a tripod to my camera, but it was only an one night stand…..

    The camera still dreams about the loving extender and hopes that there will meet another partner capable of a longer relationship.

    I could only admire the dedication of security guards who see in any passenger an Al Qaida member. And I wish As-salamu alaykum to them because we now feel so safe on airports. No other XShot extender will harm anyone in a plane.

  19. Deebs October 30, 2012 at 3:58 pm - Reply

    I live in Whitehorse, YT, Canada and before we got Condor we had two choices: Air Canada (not great) and Air North (great). These airlines only fly direct to Vancouver, BC – Victoria, BC or Edmonton, AB – Calgary, AB for a considerable fee. Condor has been amazing for Yukoners; a roundtrip flight to Frankfurt is comparable to a roundtrip flight to Vancouver, BC (which is a 2.5 hour flight). They only fly June – September a few times a month but it has been wonderful for people who want to go overseas.

  20. kathy October 23, 2012 at 9:56 pm - Reply

    I have never heard of Condor, but then again I have flown on some rather random airlines, like Biman (, which was an interesting experience in itself. I will definately look into Condor for my next flight and see how they compare.

    I totally agree with you on Frankfurt, it is not my favorite airport and its so huge, you think 2 hrs is enough time but then find yourself hoofing a few miles to your next gate with a couple of security stops in between… suddenly you have 10min. As for early morning flights, I am useless at avoiding them too, I always seem to book them think 9am thats not too bad, but forgetting it takes an hour to get to the airport on the shuttle and you have to be there at 7am… not to mention the ones I have done that leave at 1am or other such stupid hours (that one I stayed awake for too).

    Ahh the joys of travel, I love it, it’s just the traveling part that gets exhausting.

    • Earl October 27, 2012 at 2:09 pm - Reply

      Hey Kathy – One of my craziest airline experiences of all time was on Biman Bangladesh…broken plane, passengers sitting on the aisle, duct tape on the windows, surprise (and very secretive) stop in Myanmar…all good stuff 🙂

  21. Dan Secrest October 23, 2012 at 9:00 am - Reply

    Hi Earl,

    I just returned from a business trip in India. For intra-country flights in India I recommend IndiGo Airlines. They are very reasonably priced flights and the equipment is all modern.

    Best regards,

    • Earl October 26, 2012 at 12:47 pm - Reply

      Thanks for the recommendation Dan. I have flown with IndiGo before myself and they are a great option for local flights within India as well as to the Middle East.

  22. Audrey October 18, 2012 at 3:58 pm - Reply

    Glad to hear you had a good experience with Condor. We flew this this summer from Seattle to Frankfurt and were similarly surprised by how “civil” it all was. Dan suffered a bit with the leg room, but the food was remarkably good and the price was hard to beat. Love finding good value companies like this – we flew Avianca a few years ago from Santiago, Chile and was amazed at how nice the service was on this airline that we had never really heard about before.

    Have a great time in India – can’t wait to hear how the tour goes!

    • Earl October 22, 2012 at 1:39 am - Reply

      Thanks Audrey! It’s good to hear your experience as well, and on a longer flight that I took. These kind of great value airlines deserve to be mentioned these days, as sometimes it seems they get negative press just for being a ‘budget’ or ‘vacation’ airline when there really isn’t anything to complain about in the end.

  23. Thomas S. Moore October 17, 2012 at 8:32 am - Reply

    Seems like you had a great plan. Stay up and sleep on the plane. Thats one long flight how are the seats on Condor? Being 6’2 I try my best to get the seats near the emergency exit as anything more then 2 hrs and I just get annoyed. I see you are not to far from my neck of the woods in FL.

    • Earl October 18, 2012 at 1:03 pm - Reply

      Hey Thomas – The seats were a little smaller than other airlines but they also had a Comfort Level that offers more legroom and wider seats, for a price of course. Not sure how much it costs for those. As I’m about 5’11, I found the seats to be fine but I can see how you might need some more space!

  24. jake October 17, 2012 at 4:57 am - Reply

    hey earl- good post. had never heard of condor before. will check them out to see if i can get good price with them across atlantic. (i am also from east coast) there is another little-known airline similar to condor that i flew last summer. you heard of spirit air? it is actually quite convenient airline. however most of their flights only in continental US- also several flights involving mexico and central america. i flew them from fort lauderdale to honduras one-way for only only $80. they also get bad reputation from some people.. but i had no problems with them.

    • Earl October 18, 2012 at 1:01 pm - Reply

      Hey Jake – I’m familiar with Spirit but have never flown them. Every time I go to their website I get so confused by all of their fees that it turns me off and I end up booking with someone else.

  25. Melissa Anderson October 16, 2012 at 6:59 pm - Reply

    Having been to Goose Bay, I can assure you, it certainly is in the middle of nowhere… but not in the quaint sort of way. More of a depressing sort of way.

    • Earl October 17, 2012 at 12:38 am - Reply

      Hey Melissa – That’s very good to knwo…now I just need to find a more suitable middle of nowhere Canadian location. Of course, there is no shortage I’d imagine.

  26. Natalie at No Particular Place October 16, 2012 at 8:58 am - Reply

    Sorry — I forgot to mention that we discovered Condor through an ITA Software search. How did you find out about them? Many people we’ve talked to haven’t heard of them yet.

    • Earl October 17, 2012 at 12:34 am - Reply

      Hey Natalie – I discovered Condor just through a simple flight search on It came up as one of the options, and it was the cheapest and most direct option as well.

  27. Natalie at No Particular Place October 16, 2012 at 8:55 am - Reply

    Hi Earl,

    We’re going to be taking our first Condor flights next month and are excited to try them out! It’s great to hear that you were satisfied with your experience. The price certainly can’t be beat! 🙂

    • Earl October 17, 2012 at 12:34 am - Reply

      Hey Natalie – I’m sure your flight will be as equally enjoyable as mine was!

  28. Tomi October 16, 2012 at 3:37 am - Reply

    I’ve never flown with Condor but in general I’ve also been often positively surprised by the service of so called cheapo airlines.

    I’ve never really had a terrible experience and while the service or seats may sometimes be a bit lacking, it’s not too bad when you consider the price difference with the more traditional airlines.

    BTW, I’ve been in Frankfurt International quite a few times and I agree, the food there sucks. I ordered a meatloaf once, I felt like having a hearty home-cooked style meal, and what I got is nothing like any meatloaf I’ve ever had. I’m pretty sure it’s the only time in my life that I’ve actually eaten Spam.


  29. [email protected] October 15, 2012 at 11:12 pm - Reply

    Interesting post Earl, but I’m just wondering…

    Was this a sponsored (by Condor) post? Just curious ‘cuz you link to Condor, but not to Lufthansa.

    Just wondering ‘cuz I only recently started posting reviews of cooking classes, etc. on my own blog, and am curious as to your (far more experienced) thoughts on such.

    • Earl October 15, 2012 at 11:17 pm - Reply

      Hey Dyanne – No, this isn’t a sponsored post. I just linked to Condor since that was what the majority of the post was about. I’ve stayed away from sponsored posts so far unless I am able to work out a creative project, such as the XShot Photo Series that I’ve been doing. Apart from that though, I won’t place sponsored posts on the site.

      • [email protected] October 15, 2012 at 11:34 pm - Reply

        Thanks for the swift reply Earl. Yes difficult to know just where to draw the line. Just seems like I often freely peck tomes on various activities, accommodations, etc. from my travels, and sometimes wonder if I’m foolish not to be seeking a discount/freebie.

        That said, I must say – that XShot continues to enchant me – I only wish there were a simple way of buying one here in Vietnam.

        • Earl October 17, 2012 at 12:33 am - Reply

          Hey Dyanne – I know what you mean and I think the key is to find companies/services/websites that you truly use and support and then talk to them and try to work out a deal. If you write about such companies because you truly believe they will benefit your readers and you write honestly at all times (even if you are paid by the company), then I think that’s perfectly acceptable.

  30. Melissa - Suitcase and Heels October 15, 2012 at 10:06 pm - Reply

    If you want middle of nowhere, try Nain or somewhere like Williams Harbour (where some of my family came from) in Labrador rather than HV-GB.

    • Earl October 17, 2012 at 12:31 am - Reply

      Thanks for the advice Melissa!

  31. I'm Also Earl October 15, 2012 at 5:55 pm - Reply

    Good post. Did you use that extender to take the pic on the airplane?? I’d be self conscious to do that. I feel like people are looking at me even when I just get up to take a leak.

    I’ve never flown with Condor but I have learned that those negative reviews are often true, like when I flew on Kenya Airlines. Whenever possible, I try to fly on decent airlines. I find the comfort vastly outweighs the savings. You fly NYC to Tokyo on Continental you get a cramped seat, bad food, bad service and no TV in the headrest. If you pay 200 more you fly ANA you get a bigger seat, better food, world class service and a TV loaded with shows, movies, music and even games. Same goes for Korean Air (best service on earth) vs. Delta to Korea.

    Earl, I came home to stay with family after spending the last year on the road. I was planning on staying a while, but I keep getting the distinct feeling that I’m not really welcome. I have $6,500 saved up and a monthly income of about $300 from an ebook I wrote. Where do you think a good place to spend the next 6+ months on that would be?

    I was thinking of Cambodia for the low prices and ease of getting a long term visa. But the older I get the less I am liking places that are always hot and rainy, crowded with traffic, bad infrastructure and lots of pests (giant roaches!), and health dangers (water you can’t drink, food poisoning, traffic dangers, hepatitis and dengue, etc.).

    I really just want to relax.

    I’ve never been to Eastern Europe or Turkey. Some people have recommended it. Iceland is about my favorite place in the world, but I know I could never afford it on the money I have.

    What do you recommend?

    Sorry for the long post. I love your blog and I wait for your updates like a main in the desert waits for rain.

    • Earl October 17, 2012 at 12:30 am - Reply

      @I’m Also Earl – The photo of the plane was just a normal shot actually. As for recommendations, while I think Eastern Europe is a great option, it’s not the best place to be in the winter where it can be terribly cold with plenty of ice and snow. So I would say somewhere in Central/South America might be a good option as there are towns in Mexico, Guatemala (Antigua / Xela), Nicaragua (Leon / Granada), Colombia (Medellin) and more that offer great value and a comfortable lifestyle. Then, when the winter is over, you should make your way to Romania/Bulgaria/Turkey!

  32. Sofie October 15, 2012 at 3:36 pm - Reply

    Hey Earl, I’d never heard of Condor Airlines, but after your post I’ll be sure to check them out for future trips!

  33. Sarah Somewhere October 15, 2012 at 3:16 pm - Reply

    Hey Earl, glad you had a good experience. I got on a Garuda airlines flight after climbing a volcano, spent, exhausted and The Best Exotic was on too. I could have cried! Must be something with that movie. Enjoy ‘home’ and India!

    • Earl October 17, 2012 at 12:27 am - Reply

      Hey Sarah – Ha…there is something about that movie, especially for those who love India of course!

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