Austrian Airlines A320 Economy Class Review – Vienna to London Heathrow

This is a review of my Austrian Airlines flight OS455 from Vienna to London Heathrow in January 2020. The flight was the second leg of my connecting journey between Zagreb and London. I reviewed the first leg between Zagreb and Vienna for Simple Flying before.

Austrian Airlines Airbus A320
My aircraft was OE-LBY, an Austrian Airlines Airbus A320. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying

Before the flight

I purchased this ticket three months in advance to experience an Austrian Airlines connecting journey. My flight originated in Zagreb, and continued to London Heathrow. This is a review of the second leg.

Austrian Airlines deploys a fairly standard pricing strategy, with ticket prices falling after release before climbing rapidly and then falling again just days before the flight’s departure time.

Austrian Airlines price one way London
The price of this one-way Austrian Airlines flight between Vienna and London Heathrow varied significantly over time. Photo: Google Flights

Check-in with Austrian Airlines opens 47 hours before departure, though I had to check-in separately for each of my two flights as part of this connecting journey.

Before departure, as is standard for the Lufthansa Group airlines, I was offered a selection of journals and magazines to download on my phone in a variety of languages.

Austrian Airlines business class upgrade
During check-in, Austrian offered me access to its Vienna Airport Business Class Lounge for 35 Euros. Photo: Screenshot, Austrian app
Austrian Airlines Lufthansa Group e-journals
Some e-journals were free, for others we needed to pay. Photo: Screenshot, Austrian app

Transferring in Vienna

Austrian Airlines Vienna transfer
Unlike in Munich and like in Frankfurt, transferring in Vienna requires a security check. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying
Vienna airport departure board Austrian Airlines
Austrian Airlines does 25-minute connections in Vienna, which is considerably shorter than the 45 minutes that Lufthansa does in Frankfurt. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying
Austrian Airlines Vienna airport
There is a nice selection of restaurants to choose from. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying
Vienna airport restaurant
I had a Wiener Schnitzel as a quick dinner between my two flights. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying

The flight

The flight departed with a slight delay because the aircraft was late in arrival. We still reached our parking position at London Heathrow on time, owing to Austrian leaving more time for taxiing in the schedule than we actually made use of.

The flight was almost fully sold out although there were several free seats in Economy class. Considering that this was the last day of the UK Christmas school holidays, and a Sunday evening flight, this is perhaps slightly disappointing for the airline.

Austrian Airlines aircraft AirbusThe line up at Vienna is a straight line of Austrian Airlines aircraft. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying

Austrian Airlines legroom
The legroom was fine, but definitely on the tighter side. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying
Vienna Austrian Airlines
Vienna from air. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying
Austrian carbon neutral air travel
The in-flight magazine features an article about carbon-neutral European air travel growth. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying
Austrian Airlines refreshments
As refreshments we received a drink of choice and a small packet of dairy-free crackers. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying
Austrian Airlines in flight magazine
Austrian also advertises a flight pass service: customers who buy the pass get to book 10 flights at a fixed price. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying
Austrian Airlines London from air
London from air. Photo: Jakov Fabinger, Simple Flying

The judgement

Overall, this was a standard European flight. For the price I paid, I was satisfied with what I received. The cabin crew were reasonably friendly, and I particularly enjoyed the classical music played in the aircraft during boarding. But the legroom Austrian offers is definitely tight, and the refreshments served are more symbolic than substantial.

All in all, for the short connecting time and for the low ticket price, I would do the trip again. But not if I was travelling point to point from Vienna to London.

How does my experience of Austrian Airlines compare to yours? Let us know in the comments below.