Here’s a brief two-segment review of SriLankan Airlines economy class onboard the A330. In short: good service, good meals, and an overall smooth experience.
As a reminder, I’m in the midst of a “vintage” trip report to India/Maldives. Although this flight took place in 2016, it still captures what you can expect if you fly SriLankan today and has not been previously published. Click here for more recent trip reports.
After a great stay at the Park Hyatt Chennai, it was finally time to fly to the Maldives. We chose to fly Sri Lankan with an overnight in Colombo. Not only did the schedule work out best, but we got to spend nearly a day in Colombo. Sadly, we saw very little due to monsoon-like rain even though it was January. The ticket was only $119.
Check-in in lines were horrifically long in Chennai, but we avoided them thanks to my American Airlines Platinum status, allowing us use of the business class check-in line.
I chuckled at the “free” telephone. That’s quaint.
Boarding commenced on time, though was free-for-all frenzy.
SriLankan (UL) 122
Chennai (MAA) – Colombo (CMB)
Tuesday, January 05
Depart: 09:30 AM
Arrive: 10:50 AM
Duration: 1hr, 20min
Distance: 400 miles
Aircraft: Airbus A330-200
Seat: 25H (Economy Class)
I found the seats onboard to be comfortable and well-padded for economy class; decidedly above average. At 32 inches, legroom was also above average for a standard economy class product. Choose a bulkhead seat if you are looking for extra legroom. We ended up a few rows back in 25.
I had a peak at business class. While SriLankan’s A330-300s have reverse herringbone seats, some A330-200s still have 2-2-2 seating. I figured an upgrade wasn’t worthwhile on a 400-mile flight, but I like these business class seats a lot: your feet are not constrained.
Shortly after takeoff, we were offered a “refresher towelette”. Meal service followed and I was quite surprised to receive a full meal on such a short flight. I even wrote about it at the time…
> Read More: Full Hot Meal on a 1hr Economy Class Flight
And it wasn’t just a meal, but a very tasty Chana masala…look at the big portion size below. FYI, there was no choice — just this.
Lastly, I’ll note that the IFE was turned off for this flight. On my flight from Colombo to Male the following morning, it was turned on.
We landed on-time in Colombo and quickly left the airport. We had arranged e-visas in advance.
The next morning, we got back to airport very early to catch our connection to Male. Boarding started at 6:40AM.
SriLankan (UL) 101
Colombo (CMB) – Male (MLE)
Wednesday, January 06
Depart: 07:20 AM
Arrive: 08:15 AM
Duration: 1hr, 25min
Distance: 483 miles
Aircraft: Airbus A330-300
Seat: 60C (Economy Class)
The A330-300 on this sector appeared fresher, with turquoise blue seats that felt not quite as comfortable as the previous day, though it could have been my imagination.
As someone who often wears a coat or jacket when I fly, I appreciated the coat hooks on each seat and wish U.S. airlines would spend the few extra dollars to add them to new seat deliveries.
Today, the in-flight-entertainment system was turned on and I browsed it after takeoff. It included a selection of recent movies, TV shows, music and games. Complimentary headsets were distributed.
After takeoff, a choice of meals was offered for breakfast. I chose eggs with potatoes and sausage while my wife chose some disgusting dish that (can someone tell me what it is?) that crew merely identified as the “vegetarian” choice. She bravely tried a bite of it and reported it every bit as bad as it looked. Meanwhile, my eggs were tasty for powdered eggs on an airplane…I thought breakfast was fabulous for a such a short flight.
It wasn’t a very beautiful day as we flew in Male, with storm clouds billowing and generally gray conditions prevailing.
Once again, we landed on time and disembarked via air stairs. We had made to to the Maldives!
I was very impressed with both SriLankan flights. Flight attendants were pleasant, food was tasty, and the seats were more than comfortable for such short flights. It’s always nice to fly a full service carrier.