TRIED AND TESTED FLIGHTS

MI­AMI (MIA) - SAL­VADOR DE BAHIA, BRAZIL (SSA)

Business Traveler (USA) - - CONTENTS - Ralf Wal­ters

LATAM 767-300ER pre­mium busi­ness class Mi­ami – Sal­vador de Bahia, Brazil

BACK­GROUND Sal­vador de Bahia is a va­ca­tion hotspot on Brazil’s At­lantic coast pop­u­lar with Brazil­ians and in­ter­na­tional guests alike. LATAM Air­lines Brazil, a oneworld mem­ber, of­fers the only non­stop flight from the US to Sal­vador de Bahia from Mi­ami. The once per week di­rect ser­vice be­gan out of Mi­ami on April 29. The move shaves six hours off LATAM’s 14-hour flight which is of­fered mul­ti­ple times per week, but which has a stopover in Bo­gota.

CHECK-IN At an hour be­fore the 4:55 PM de­par­ture, I was sur­prised to see how many peo­ple were wait­ing to board. My flight was “week two” for the new Sun­day non­stop ser­vice (Mon­day re­turn flights) and it was ap­par­ent LATAM’s new di­rect route was a hit. Check-in went smoothly; Pre­mium Busi­ness was first to board.

BOARD­ING Fly­ing Pre­mium Busi­ness class, I was one of the first to be seated. The two-aisle 767-300 has 16 flatbed seats in the Pre­mium Busi­ness cabin, con­fig­ured 2-2-2. I was seated in the sec­ond row, con­ve­niently next to the right-side aisle. Barely set­tled in, I was greeted by a sharply dressed flight at­ten­dant who of­fered al­monds and nuts and a glass of sparkling white wine. Later, we were given fash­ion­able black and white striped per­sonal care kits, in­clud­ing sleep mask and com­fort socks.

T H E S E AT My flat bed seat had a lighted con­sole and dig­i­tal but­tons for cus­tom­ized back and leg sup­port when seated up­right. The arm­rest is clev­erly de­signed with a pull-up par­ti­tion screen and meal tray as well as a handy drink and snack ta­ble which un­folded on top. A pil­low and a heavy white com­forter fos­tered a deep sleep. A de­cent se­lec­tion of au­dio and vis­ual en­ter­tain­ment were at my fin­ger­tips us­ing a teth­ered re­mote. Good qual­ity head­phones, USB port and charg­ing out­let for ac­ces­sories were use­ful as was the floor-level stor­age cab­i­net and shelf in front of the seat. The Pre­mium Busi­ness Class space ac­com­mo­dated my nearly six-foot frame neatly.

THE FLIGHT The ser­vice of­fered in Pre­mium Busi­ness was per­sonal, friendly and pro­fes­sional. More than one flight at­ten­dant hov­ered around me, of­fer­ing plenty of snacks and bev­er­ages and pre­sent­ing an invit­ing din­ner menu and wine se­lec­tion. I chose King Prawns Ag­nolotti in a roasted tomato sauce with al­monds. The din­ner salad came with sea­soned veg­eta­bles, and for dessert, I or­dered Pisco Mousse in port wine sauce, all of which were very sat­is­fy­ing. Sa­vor­ing world-fa­mous Brazil­ian cof­fee and choco­late is a must. Fifty min­utes be­fore land­ing, I was of­fered a choice of an ex­press or full break­fast to carry me through the morn­ing.

AR­RIVAL The eight-hour flight ar­rived at Sal­vador Bahia’s Dep­utado Luís Ed­uardo Ma­gal­hães In­ter­na­tional Air­port right on time. Go­ing through cus­toms was un­event­ful and the wait for bag­gage was av­er­age. One note of cau­tion: Be sure to al­low am­ple time to ap­ply for a Brazil­ian visa be­fore leav­ing the US.

VER­DICT LATAM of­fers a world­class ex­pe­ri­ence in Pre­mium Busi­ness, punc­tu­ated by a gen­uinely friendly crew, de­li­cious food and bev­er­ages, and Brazil­ian hos­pi­tal­ity.

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