Review: Icelandair Saga Class B757, Reykjavík (Keflavik) – Paris Charles de Gaulle


Icelandair offers connecting service from North America to Western Europe through it’s hub in Keflavik Reykjavik Iceland. It also offers a proper business class recliner seat to and from Iceland, where many other European carriers offer an economy class seat with a blocked middle. How does Icelandair fare up on an intra-Europe business class segment?

This post is one chapter on our trip to Jordan, Israel and France during the end of the pandemic. This trip was enhanced through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status, Hertz Gold Plus Rewards and Alaska Mileage Plan. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.

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Review: Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Boeing 757-2, Reykjavík (Keflavik International Airport) – Paris Charles de Gaulle Terminal 2B

After arriving off Icelandair Saga Business Class Seattle – Reykjavik (Keflavik) we connected onwards to Icelandair Saga Business Class Reykjavik (Keflavik) – Paris Charles de Gualle Terminal 2B (this review). Unfortunately, our ninety minute connection time evaporated pretty quickly, and we didn’t have time to visit the excellent Icelandair Saga Lounge Reykjavik, on this particular connection.

This flight was a similar but slightly shorter version of Icelandair Saga Business Class Reyjkavik – Madrid, so please feel free to check out that review if you want to see what another intra – Europe Icelandair Saga Business Class flight looks like.

This particular flight would mark my fourth Icelandair flight and I have to say I’ve had a pretty good experience with Icelandair in their Saga Premium cabins so far to date.

Boarding Icelandair at Keflavik:

We boarded through Gate C28. The Gate was quite busy with crowding at the bottom of the escalator. It was apparent that it was a bus gate. As Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class travellers, we were funnelled into a corridor walking alongside queued economy class travellers who lined the length of the corridor.

Waiting to Board in Keflavik, Iceland

Once at the front of the line, Business Class priority was allowed first crack at the bus. However, it only meant getting on the bus first. While we were in the hold lounge, we had an announcement that those in rows 1 – 20 should board by front stairs, where as those in row 21-40 should board by the back stairs.

Spotting Icelandair aircraft at Keflavik International Airport

At day break, we had a bus ride out to our Icelandair Boeing 757-2. We had a great morning grounds’ eye view of Icelandair aircraft on the apron at Keflavik.

Icelandair Boeing 757-200 parked at Keflavik International Airport

After arriving to our position, we had a clamber up the exterior stairs through door 2L. We self lifted our rolling suitcases up the jet bridge stairs.

Boarding Our Icelandair Boeing 757-200
FI 542  – Saga Business Class (A)
KEF-CDG (Reykjavik Keflavik International Airport – Paris Charles de Gaulle Terminal 2B)
October 10, 2022
7:40 AM – 1:15 PM (scheduled)
7:41 AM – 12:51 PM (actual)
Booked: Boeing 737
Flown: Boeing 757-200

On Board Icelandair Saga Class:

After getting off the bus and clambering up the stairs through door 2L, we turned left into the Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class cabin.

The Icelandair Saga Business Class cabin on the Boeing 757-200 is configured in a 2 -2 set up. The aircraft is quite old with a very dated look in the seats and cabin.

Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200

The recliner seats are leather covered but are comfortable for a three hour regional international flight. The Icelandair Saga Business Class is miles ahead of British Airways or Lufthansa Business Class intra-europe which is typically an ecomony class seat in a 3-3 configuration with a blocked middle seat.

Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200
Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200
Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200
Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200
Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200

The load was pretty quiet with many travellers arriving towards the end of the boarding sequence due to later arrival of the buses.

We settled into our seats. A small bottle of Iceland water was waiting for us on the seat. We did not get an offer of a pre-departure beverage for this intra-europe international flight.

Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200
Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200 with hip square windows
Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200

The seats also featured a retractable foot rest. While this is a feature that is occasionally comfortable, it’s not something that I’d miss if a particular aircraft didn’t have it in their business class cabin.

Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class Cabin – Boeing 757-200

It’s also worth nothing that the Icelandair Boeing 757-200 product features individual air nozzles in the seat above you. This makes for a more comfortable flight than on their Icelandair Boeing 767-300ER aircraft; which does not feature any personal air nozzles.

Icelandair Boeing 757-200 – Individual Air Nozzles

Overall, the Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class cabin was comfortable for a regional three hour business class flight around Europe. It was miles ahead of the usual business economy class seat found on other carriers.


Departing Keflavik / Reykjavík:

We got underway one minute after the scheduled departure time. As we taxied out to the runway, we had a view of Icelandair aircraft in both the traditional livery and the newer Icelandair livery.

Spotting Icelandair Liveries – Departing Keflavik International Airport

We had an immediate departure under grey morning skies at Keflavik. There was no wait at the hold line, and we were underway really quickly.

Departing Keflavik International Airport

One of the best features of departing Iceland is the amazing coastal views. Iceland has an amazing craggy landscape. Our first views were of Keflavik’s torn up runways and taxiways.

Views from the Wing – Keflavik International Airport
Views from the Wing – Keflavik International Airport

As we climbed to altitude, we had views of Keflavik along with the coastline of Iceland. Being October, it looked rugged and cold.

I never tire of these Views from the Wing – Keflavik International Airport
Views from the Wing – Keflavik International Airport

In Flight Entertainment System:

Icelandair offers an in flight entertainment. The monitors are on seatback screens embedded in the seat ahead of you. The monitors contain a small swivel that allow for adjustment of the screen, in the event the person sitting in front of you reclines their seat.

Icelandair Advanced Video on Demand

By the time we were underway, we only had two hours and forty seven minutes to Paris. We had an assigned flight track that would take us over the United Kingdom and down to France.

Icelandair Advanced Video on Demand
Icelandair Advanced Video on Demand – Flight Track

The seat featured a table that was pulled out from the arm rest. It had a little extra room and fit an Apple MacBook Pro 13 inch without any difficulty.

Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class – Table

The Meal: A Breakfast

Once we were into the cruise altitude, a drink menu was dropped off. The drink menu was comprehensive and mirrored products on the Icelandair trans-continental flights.

There was also a substantial Gin and Tonic menu, that allowed for sampling of boutique Icelandic Gin’s.

There were also cocktails that surfaced in the form of an Espresso Martini and an Italian Spritz. The famous Gull Icelandic Beer usually available at the Blue Lagoon also made an appearance in regular and lite forms. There was also a small list of snacks available for consumption.

Breakfast was delivered with the menu tucked onto the tray. The menu was disproportionately small compared to the large drink menu.

Breakfast today consisted of Oatmeal with seeds and fresh fruits, a mini Baguette and whole wheat croissant with salami, cured ham, cherry tomatoes, Ljótur Blue Chese, Grettir Hard Cheese and Butter with Strawberry Jam. There was also a small slice of Tomato Frittata with Creamy Mushrooms and Potatoes. The food appeared fresh and tasty looking, making for appealing breakfast items.

Icelandair Saga Premium Business Class – Breakfast

Breakfast was surprisingly more than I was expecting for a 3 hour flight. It was Surprisingly tasty considering the food. Unfortunately, the coffee was stone cold and must have been made 30 – 40 minutes ago. I also happened to hear other passengers commenting on how cold it was.

Arriving to Paris Charles de Gualle:

After breakfast and a glass of Louis Jadot Bourgone white wine, it was time to descend into Paris. We had a bit of a rotating descent into a longer hold pattern for CDG.

Icelandair Flight Information
Icelandair Flight Track Arriving Into Paris

I always enjoy the first views of continental Europe on my first trans – continental flight. It always appears so different from the usual view from the wing on my usual routes in North America.

Views on Final Approach into Paris Charles de Gaulle International Airport

The Icelandair Saga Premium Class passengers were among the first to disembark. We arrived into Paris Charles de Gaulle Terminal 2B. We arrived into a terminal with Easyjet aircraft and other odd ball carriers not part of any airline alliance. As we had cleared immigration in Keflavik / Reykjavik, we did not have to queue at all for EU Immigration.

Arriving into Paris Charles de Gaulle Terminal 2B

We had a very long wait for baggage delivery. It was about twenty minutes wait after arriving to the baggage carousel after we had a very leisurely walk from the aircraft to baggage claim.

Baggage Claim at Paris Charles de Gaulle Terminal 2B

After collecting our bags, we took the CDG Val Train over to The Residence Inn by Marriott – Paris Charles de Gaulle Central Airport for an overnight layover.

Lastly, my frequent flier points for this Icelandair flight successfully credited to Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan twelve days after the flight. While it wasn’t the fastest credit, it posted without any intervention or request for missing points.

My Thoughts on Icelandair Saga Business Class:

Icelandair remains a more comfortable way to get to and from Iceland than the legacy mainline airline alliance carriers of British Airways and Lufthansa. The large recliner seats were comfortable and much better than the euro-business class offered with other European carriers.

The Icelandair Boeing 757-200 aircraft offered individual air nozzles; something I always appreciate. The breakfast meal was more than expected, but the coffee barista had the morning off as the coffee on board wasn’t all to exciting.

If you have flown Icelandair from Europe to Iceland, do you find their business class to be better than British Airways or Lufthansa?

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