Well, chalk this up to an unintended bucket list item! As of last week, I have now flown Turkish Airlines from or to every US destination (and even have Toronto thrown in for good measure). I actually did not do this on purpose but I fly Turkish more than any other airline for international travel so I am also not surprised that I did it either.
My Favorite Turkish Airlines Destinations in the US
Here is some information on the Turkish Airlines routes in the US, which ones are my favorites and why.
Here are the US cities that Turkish Airlines (currently) flies to:
- Los Angeles
- New York
- San Francisco
- Washington, DC
They were supposed to have announced/started their Newark route but that has not happened yet.
|US City||Departure Time||Arrival Time||Length of Flight||Aircraft|
|Atlanta||22:35||16:40 the next day||11:05||Boeing 787 Dreamliner|
|Boston||23:45||16:10 the next day||9:25||Airbus A330|
|Chicago||21:40||16:15 the next day||10:35||Boeing 777|
|Houston||20:50||16:50 the next day||12:00||Boeing 777|
|Miami||20:45||15:05 the next day||11:20||Boeing 777|
|Los Angeles||18:30||17:35 the next day||13:05||Boeing 777|
|New York||12:30||05:15 the next day||9:45||Airbus A330|
|New York||19:05||11:55 the next day||9:50||Boeing 777|
|New York||00:10||16:50 the next day||9:40||Boeing 777|
|San Francisco||18:10||17:10 the next day||13:00||Boeing 777|
|Washington, DC||23:00||16:15 the next day||10:15||Boeing 787 Dreamliner|
Why I Love Flying Turkish Airlines
There are many reasons I love flying with Turkish Airlines but one of the big ones has to do with their departure times. I like being able to get a full day of stuff in in the US before departing and departing from many of these cities with Turkish gives me that.
I also like that everyone gets 2 free bags from the US with Turkish to Europe, which is something that no other airline gives you. As a Star Alliance Gold elite customer, I also like the ability to board early, get an extra bag, have separate lanes for security and check-in and occasionally even get upgraded on shorter flights!
I also love their onboard service in food – it is great in either business class or economy!
My Journeys with Turkish Airlines and flying them to/from the US
I actually didn’t even realize that I was hitting my last Turkish Airlines city in the US until about a couple of months ago. I was scheduled to fly from Atlanta to Europe and that is when I checked and saw that it was my last Turkish Airlines city. I have flown mostly with them to/from the East Coast cities but have gotten in one flight to each of San Francisco and Los Angeles, as well as just one flight to Miami.
The city I have flown Turkish Airlines the most to/from is New York City and its JFK airport. They are the only US airport with multiple daily Turkish flights (during busier seasons, there are actually 3 flights per day!) and they are closest to my home airport of ROC. I have probably flown them to or from JFK at least 30 times over the years and that with each of their departures.
I have flown business class to or from every US destination with the exception of Miami. I have also flown economy on the JFK flights many times as well as Boston, Chicago, and Washington, DC.
My Favorite Turkish Airlines US Destination for Award Availability
I have redeemed a lot of miles for business class awards with Turkish (mostly with Aegean miles) so I have become quite familiar with the best cities to check for award availability. The two cities that I have found have more availability than others over the years are Boston and Houston. Right behind them is Chicago. Houston, until last year, had regularly had 4 or more business class seats available on many days throughout the months as well.
However, I have not been a fan of the aircraft that Turkish has used on the Houston route. It clearly has seen better days and (in business class)the foot rest does not have a cupboard/storage compartment but rather just a cubbyhole. Still, it is a nice business class route for sure, just some nitpicking.
The Turkish Airlines flights that I have found to be the hardest for awards in business class have been Los Angeles and the middle of the day flight with JFK.
My Favorite Turkish Airlines Routes from the US and Why
Atlanta – Istanbul
Well, Atlanta just went to my number 1 but that is only because they are flying the new Boeing 787 Dreamliner with the new business class (Washington, DC has that aircraft as well). However, there is nothing else about the Atlanta destination that would make me mention that as a favorite (I mean, the security line there is really not good – more on that in another post!).
Early JFK-Istanbul Flight – Even Better IST-JFK!
I have to say that there are two favorites for me with Turkish Airlines. One is the 12:30/1PM flight out of JFK. It is the earliest flight that Turkish has from the US and it gets you to Turkey very early the next morning. That means you can connect to another point in Europe and likely be there around breakfast.
It is the one flight that I have found works really well with the body since I normally get up a lot earlier on those days to get stuff done and end up being able to sleep for a little bit in either business or coach and be good to go on landing.
But, I like it even more on the flight from Istanbul to JFK. That leaves at 6AM and you arrive at JFK before noon the same day. That is perfect if you are able to manage that early morning flight! I love it because I normally spend the night in the lounge getting work done and then sleep as soon as I get on the plane. This way, I am falling asleep about the same time I would in NY so I get myself on NY time right away. In addition to all of that, I love the breakfast food that is served in the Turkish Airlines business class lounge! 🙂
Late JFK – Istanbul Flight
The other favorite for me is the JFK 11:30PM/12AM flight. That is one of, if not the, latest flight out of the US for Turkish so it really lets you get in a completely full day wherever you may be in the US. Plus, it is an awesome flight for flying in business class because you will still be in the air for over 9 hours and you will likely be very tired on take-off so you can get some sleep right off the bat. It helps you to not be too messed up on time on arrival.
My Favorite Turkish Airlines Aircraft to/from the US
Well, this is a very easy one – hands down, my favorite Turkish Airlines aircraft is their new 787 Dreamliner. Following that, I would have to say it is the newer 777 airplanes.
However, it is hard to know which versions of the 777 or A330 you will be on! If you get an older one ) either, the cabins are definitely going to be in need of a renovation of some kind.
I thought it was kind of a cool thing in my aviation log to see that I had flown Turkish Airlines on that many US routes! There are many things that I enjoy about Turkish that go beyond just their business class or having elite status in their alliance. Even in economy, their food, entertainment, and service is excellent and they are also great with kids – which is one of the reasons we choose them when our family is traveling together.
But, having elite status can greatly elevate the Turkish Airlines experience, even in economy! It will give you priority access to security lines, check-in lines, boarding lines, and, of course, access to the amazing new Turkish Airlines Business Class or Miles & Smiles lounges in Istanbul!