As part of my long voyage to, and within, Morocco, I got the chance to experience Royal Air Maroc’s (RAM) domestic service between Casablanca and Agadir. While the airline has an incredible long-haul fleet,I would find out that my 737-700 just couldn’t match the much newer 787s in terms of hard-product. That said, RAM offers a serviceable, and relatively affordable, domestic service, worthy of your consideration should you need to travel within the Kingdom.
Casablanca airport – a labyrinth of modernity and heritage
I arrived at CMN at 20:16, giving my mum and I an hour and a half before our flight. Although that’s more than a sufficient amount of time for a domestic departure, Casablanca, as it stands, is a hard airport to navigate. The fundamental issues, signage and renovations.
After checking in with the help of some swanky check-in machines, and dropping off our bags, we attempted to follow the signs to the departures area. Little did we know, at that time, the signs only referred to international departures. Thanks to e-gates controlling access, and some very helpful staff, we weren’t “lost” for too long.
Eventually, and after asking for directions two more times, we made it to the domestic departure area. Which, while old compared to the rest of the terminal, and on the small side, was beautiful.
The architecture, very much from the 60s, took great inspiration from traditional Moroccan design. The middle of the ornate roof featured a downwards facing spire, with its tip pointing over a model of the Hassan II Mosque, located in Casablanca.
RAM 737-700 – an original Next Generation aircraft.
Although no announcement was made, At 21:20 we made our way to the gate, seeing a sizable queue. By 20:24 we were bused to our awaiting 737-700, part of the third generation of Boeing’s successful airliner family.
We boarded by stairs, and while it was a bit chaotic at times, I could see numerous smiling staff members assisting young families and the elderly.
Eventually, I got to my seat, 14E, an emergency exit row after entering the aircraft through the front door, passing through business class. And wow, the plane was a bit retro.
As for the seat itself, it was showing its age, both in terms of comfort, although many older seats are great, and style. Legroom however, was excellent, albeit the emergency row might have been exceptional. Looking around though, most people seemed comfortable legroom wise.
Awaiting at my seat were no amenities to speak of, bar the rather standard in-flight literature. The aircraft did have IFE, in the form of overhead screens which seemed much newer than the aircraft itself. The aircraft also had a sticker showing the availability of SKYRAM, the airline’s internet connectivity service. Unfortunately though, I didn’t have time to use it on this short flight.
Slight delay to a service-less flight
By 21:56 we had yet to leave our parking position, meaning that we were already facing a delay. As more passengers embarked, a commotion in the row next to mine sprung up. A madam, seated in the emergency aisle, categorically refused to let her bag out of her sight. Thus, she demanded that she be able to put it under the seat in front of her. While a flight attendant protested, she didn’t budge, and it took the Chief Purser to convince her otherwise.
With that issue resolved, a safety played was played around 22:05 and we pushed back. Eventually, rolling off into the dark Moroccan starless night.