KLM Royal Dutch Airlines first introduced the Boeing 737 to their fleet over 30 years ago with the 737-200. Over time the 737-family became an essential part of the airline's operations and is currently the national carrier’s flagship on short-haul routes.
On 20 July 2019, I had the opportunity to fly between Amsterdam and Montpellier on one of the renowned 737 aircraft in KLM colours. KLM flies to Montpellier on a daily basis, with occasional extra flights during the summer months.
KL1407 was scheduled to leave at 14:10 UTC and arrive at 16:00 UTC. The aircraft for my flight was PH-BGW, an eight year old 737-700. It is one of the few aircraft decorated with a special sticker on it as part of the celebrations for KLM’s 100 year existence.
Although the flight was slightly delayed, I did not mind as I find Schiphol a very pleasant and modern airport with a wide range of shops, restaurants and entertainment facilities. KLM offers a lot of information regarding your flight on its app, including reminders about check-in and updates about the gate, time of departure and more. This gives the traveller a feeling of comfort, as if there is a crew member offering assistance throughout the journey.
My seat was in Economy Class. Once boarding started, things went quickly and smoothly. The crew was very friendly upon embarking and we were soon ready for push-back.
During the flight, everyone was offered a beautifully decorated box (see photos below) containing a wrap with cheese, tomato and spinach, a cup of water and a napkin. The taste was surprisingly good and the ingredients were fresh. Drinks were provided soon after in equally beautiful cups. The attention to details regarding the design is impressive and part of KLM’s goal to make its passengers feel at home as soon as they board the plane. In addition, the cleanliness of the aircraft overall was impeccable.
The crew were very smiling and patient, which I think is rare these days. Of course, being a premium airline anything less should be unacceptable. The seats were comfortable and legroom was great for someone being 1.93 meters tall.
PH-BGW is not equipped with any IFE other than magazines, which corresponds with the rest of KLM’s short-haul fleet. There is no Wi-Fi on board either, which could be a reason not to choose to travel with the Dutch national carrier as an increasing number of airlines do offer this service on European flights. However, it is expected that once a decision has been made regarding the successor of the 737-700/-800, this option will be available.
Taking all of this into consideration, I was very pleased with the service and the overall experience. It was my third time flying with KLM and the airline met the high expectations they had set in the past. The fare of the flight is not cheap, but reasonable considering the high-season demand and the service provided throughout.