[This post is by Kodi's Mom of Kodimeow Kronicles]
(The title refers to the airlines, not the beer!)
My recent India trip was hectic and we were shuttling between cities frequently. One such shuttle was made on Kingfisher Airlines (KA). I hesitated a lot before buying our tickets. After all, these guys had made their money selling...beer. So when they served 'drinks' on board, what exactly would be in them? Did the pilot also get free 'drinks'?! I wasn't too happy about the price either. Rs 3K for one way between Hyderabad and Bangalore. The same route for which we had paid Rs 1.5K on the way in, on a different airline.
Well, there was not much room for my naive worries to influence our decision; it was only 5 days to the trip and no other airline was available for the Sunday night we wanted to fly.
So laden with doubt...and 6 odd pieces of oversized bags and a squirmy toddler, my brother, mom and I headed for the airport.
As soon as we pulled into the departures curb, a uniformed staff from KA walked over with a baggage cart and helped us load the luggage (which, btw, included a plastic bag stuffed with baby stuff! And which my 20-something-I'm-a-cool-dude brother refused to be associated with!) The staff then wheeled our cart, lifted our heavy bags through the security scanner and led us to the check in counter. So far, full points for KA - for helping with the baggage. If I were traveling alone with the kid, this is exactly what I would have needed.
Check in was quick and courteous. Boarding was on time and somebody had mercy on the toddler family and we were given priority seating. Ok, nothing great there - all airlines I've been on give kids first preference in boarding.
We entered the aircraft...and that's when the wow factor kicked in! The plane was neat - the decor was white on wood laminate and bright red cushions, err, seats. There was ample leg room to walk out without tripping over your neighbor. Each seat had its own TV screen. There were at least half a dozen video channels and many audio ones, and here's the best part, one video channel was exclusively dedicated to kids TV!! No, not even to the 10 year old kids - but really young kids, like my toddler. Wow! That is so thoughtful! Why don't the long distance airlines do that???
The plane took off on time and soon after, everyone was given a welcome packet, followed by a light dinner. Full points for punctuality and service.
The restless toddler was put to ease with Thomas Train, then Barney on the kid channel. Even the passenger in front of us who was talking 'investment' and 'strategy' a few minutes ago was tuned in to Barney. My parental brain checked him off as a dad. To a toddler, no doubt. Who else can appreciate the purple dinosaur so much?!
The flight was quick, flying time was barely 35 minutes, and landing was right on time. Overall, the most pleasant airplane trip ever.
This is definitely the most kid-friendly airline to fly. Totally worth the extra expense.
I have flown a dozen different international airlines, but this was by far the most comfortable trip and for the very first time, I was actually sad that the flight ended so soon. I mean, I hadn't even pressed all the buttons for the audio channels yet!!!
note: Have to put this in for the skeptics - neither me nor my family is affiliated with Kingfisher in any way - other than as full-fare paying customers.
note note: Have to put this in for myself - Kingfisher, if you're reading this, you know where to send the royalty check. Make sure it is addressed to Kodi space Meow. Thank you.