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"The Wings Of Taiwan": EVA Air A332, 744 Combi  
User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6938 posts, RR: 77
Posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Flying on "The Wings of Taiwan": Hong Kong-Taipei-Hong Kong
on EVA Air Airbus A330-200 & Boeing 747-400 Combi



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Photo © Ingo Lang
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Photo © H.J. Yen




Intro
EVA Air, Taiwan's second largest airline, and its A330-200 and 747-400 Combi models are featured in part 4 of my current trip report series. Domestic flights in Taiwan and a visit to the famous Taipei 101 will be in the focus in the next part.


Background
We had had a side trip to Taiwan on the agenda from the very beginning of our tour planning. There was a great choice of widebody flight options between Hong Kong and Taipei - and in the end we decided to go on the carrier which once used the marketing slogan "The Wings of Taiwan". We hadn't flown on EVA Air before - and apart from that the carrier was also offering attractive fares. We picked a late morning flight to TPE on a 747-400 Combi and added an A330-200 evening flight on the next day. There were also two 777-300ER flights available, but the departure times weren't favorable.

All those who have missed parts 1, 2 and 3 or want to read more about the background of the trip simply need to click here:
Striking Newcomer: Berlin-Beijing On Hainan A330
PEK-SHA, China Eastern A330 & Shanghai At Night
SHA-SZX, Shanghai 757: Delayed By The Military




Thursday, 06 November 2008
Hong Kong (HKG) - Taipei Taoyuan (TPE)
EVA Air, BR852
11:20-12:55 (11:18-12:54)
Flying time: 01:22 (hrs)

Boeing 747-45EM
B-16409 (s/n 1077), delivered in 05/1996 as N409EV
Economy Class, Seat 21H (Evergreen Deluxe cabin)



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Photo © Botterman Bram
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Photo © K.L.Yim




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Photo © Chaity
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Photo © K.L.Yim



Former appearance:


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Photo © Jose Ramon Valero - Iberian Spotters
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Photo © Dickson Ching - HKAEC



Evergreen Deluxe Seating
We left Kowloon early in the morning and took the MTR (Mass Transit Rail) to Tung Chung station at Lantau Island where we transferred to an airport bus. It takes more than an hour to go by MTR and bus, but is a lot cheaper than the Airport Express.
Only few passengers were waiting in line in EVA Air's check-in area and soon a friendly agent entered out data. After a few minutes she printed our boarding passes with seats in row 21 - which we had already reserved at the time of booking. EVA Air's remaining Boeing 747-400 Combi aircraft are still equipped with the old Evergreen Deluxe cabin (premium Economy Class) in the nose and front section of the main deck.
Seat map: http://www.evaair.com/NR/rdonlyres/C...FFF18B8957/0/B747_400Combi_276.jpg
The Evergreen Deluxe seats are sold as regular Economy seats on the HKG-TPE-HKG runs, so it had been clear from the very beginning where to settle down.

Airside Spotting & Boarding
After passing security I walked around for a while to find a good spotting spot. Registration spotting is a pleasure at Chek Lap Kok, but the glass windows can make it difficult for photographers sometimes. In only a few hours I got a total of 40 new registrations.

Hong Kong Express Boeing 737-84P B-KBR (with a Hong Kong Airlines 737-800 close behind):


Picture by Satchmo

Cathay Pacific Boeing 777-367ER B-KPF in Asia's World City colors:


Picture by Satchmo

Our Boeing 747-45E Combi arrived at the gate on time...



...it was B-16409, a 1996 model.




Cabin Comfort & IFE
Friendly FAs in dark green uniforms welcomed us at the door - and this time we turned left and headed to our seats in the 747's nose section. Not surprisingly, the seats - designed in the early 1990s and most likely installed on the aircraft in 1996 - can't match today's standards and look a bit worn.


Picture by Satchmo

Nevertheless, the seats are comfortable...



...and pitch is excellent for premium Economy (38 inches, according to EVA Air's website).



The front wall and the wardrobe doors are brightly-painted...



...spicing up the slightly dull ambiance in that front section (picture taken later in the flight). The cabin was packed - at least on the main deck.


Picture by Satchmo

In addition to overhead screens in all cabin sections, Evergreen Deluxe seats are also equipped with PTVs. However, those remained switched off during the whole flight.


On-time Departure
Our 747 Combi was pushed back ahead of schedule, passing Hong Kong Airlines Boeing 737-84P B-KBM. The livery clearly reveals that the carrier is a member of the HNA Group.



Some minutes later we entered runway 07R and our 747 rocketed upwards after a relatively short take off roll. Busy cargo ramp as usual:


Picture by Satchmo


"Meal Box"
The flight attendants soon started serving cold and hot drinks and also distributed snack boxes - or "meal boxes", as stated on the box. What I also found interesting was the remark "Please do not carry off aircraft". Do they want to reuse the boxes?



Not that I had expected a large meal - but the content of the box was disappointing, both in terms of quantity (lunchtime!) and quality.



The sandwich (ham and cheese) was dry and tasteless - and the sweet bread roll wasn't a culinary delight either. It was filled with brown cabbage-like stuff, similar to the (red bean curd?) bread roll filling I got on Hainan Airlines. Not to forget - the coffee wasn't good either. Catering was an outright disappointment on that flight.   


Cabin Tour & Approach
An announcement by the apparently American captain revealed that there wasn't much time left at cruising altitude, so we went for a walk and had a look at the "Cattle Class" section:


Picture by Satchmo


Picture by Satchmo

Just after we had returned to our seats, the plane started descending...


Picture by Satchmo

...and soon we were on final approach to Taipei Taoyuan Airport.


Picture by Satchmo

We touched down at 12:49 and arrived at the gate five minutes later - one minute ahead of schedule.


Picture by Satchmo



Transfer to Taipei Songshan
There was a long queue at immigration and it took about 30 minutes until we could grab our luggage. We decided to take the next bus to Taipei Songshan Airport in order to check the domestic flight options for the next day. Buses run every 30 minutes, one-way tickets are quite cheap (roughly 3 Euro).
The bus was equipped with comfortable seats in a 1-2 layout - and the bus on the return trip from Taipei Main Station to Taoyuan Airport on the next day was even equipped with PTVs (out of service, though).



The green headquarters of EVA Air in Taoyuan:



Motorcycles dominate the scene on Taipei's roads:



Elevated railway track of the efficient Taipei Rapid Transit System, one of the most expensive rapid transit systems ever constructed:



We arrived at Taipei Songshan Airport after a journey time of about 50 minutes and checked the domestic flight options...story to be continued in the next part.


Taipei Taoyuan Spotting
After our domestic journey to Makung and a visit to the Taipei 101 it was time to go back to Taipei Taoyuan Airport on the next day. Due to its construction, spotting from the main terminal hall is not possible. After checking in for our flight and enjoying a delicious meal in a Japanese restaurant...



...we decided to take a shuttle bus to the Chung Cheng Aviation Museum, located in the south-eastern area of the airport. Most important to us was the observation tower...



...offering views of the terminals and the runways. The (air-conditioned) observation deck is a good location for registration spotters, but taking pictures is very difficult. The planes are far away and the windows weren't clean.



Those who are interested in military planes can have a look at numerous retired Republic of China Air Force aircraft:



The museum closes at 17:00 - but views from the tower aren't good any more after sunset anyway. While we were waiting for the shuttle bus we had a closer look at some of the exhibited planes:





Friday, 07 November 2008
Taipei Taoyuan (TPE) - Hong Kong (HKG)
EVA Air, BR1851
19:00-20:45 (18:52-20:29)
Flying time: 01:17 (hrs)

Airbus A330-203
B-16306 (MSN 587), delivered in 04/2004
Economy Class, Seat 51A



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Photo © Ingo Lang
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Photo © Jonathan Rankin




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Photo © Andrew Hunt - AirTeamImages
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Photo © K.H. Ng - HKAEC



Smooth Check-in
Checking in had been fast and efficient some hours earlier. Since we hadn't been able to reserve seats in the rear cabin at the time of booking I started a new attempt at the counter. The friendly check-in agent immediately reacted to my request and told us the rows which were still available. Considering it would be only a short flight we chose the last row on the A330-200.
We passed security and took a seat in the gate area. Spotting was nearly impossible due to the darkness and relatively small windows. So I couldn't log many more registrations - in total I had got 20 new ones during the day. Several EVA Air A330s were parked side by side at the terminal - and BR1851 would be operated by B-16306, a 2004 model.




Cabin Comfort
Friendly FAs welcomed us on board while we were walking down the cabin. I found the light green and grey color tones pleasing to the eyes.


Picture by Satchmo

The slim-line seats are hard cushioned, but still comfortable.


Picture by Satchmo

Seat pitch is generous, the IFE box doesn't pose a problem.



The passenger load was quite low, so boarding was completed quickly.


Picture by Satchmo


IFE
EVA Air's A330s are equipped with an audio and video on-demand (AVOD) entertainment system which is called Star Gallery:





The system offers a wide selection of entertainment options:

  • - Sky Hollywood: 19 movies (latest blockbusters and classic flicks)
  • - Sky Concert Hall: More than 100 music CDs (playlist builder)
  • - Sky TV: 53 TV features (shows, news, travelogues, children's programs etc.)
  • - Kids' World: TV programs and music for younger travelers
  • - Sky Fantasy: 10 video games
  • - Sky Compass: Inflight data and maps with different zoom levels
  • - SMS and E-mail
  • - Sky Shop: Catalog with duty-free products and gift items
  • - Information: EVA Air news, Evergreen Club updates and travel guides

Star Gallery was easy to operate and all options were available on the short hop to Hong Kong.


On-time Departure
While a maintenance crew had to check an engine pylon on the A330 next to us, our plane was pushed back early. 15 minutes later we turned onto runway 06 and B-16306 lifted off after a powerful and short take off roll. Sky Compass channel shortly after takeoff:




Disappointing Dinner
The cabin crew soon started distributing food - and I was glad to see they handed out trays and not just "meal boxes". However, I was surprised that spaghetti Bolognese was the only option on a flight between Taipei and Hong Kong:



Honestly, the meal was another disappointment. The noodles were soft-boiled and the sauce tasted quite stale. Salt and pepper hadn't been provided, so I couldn't do anything to improve its taste. I can't complain about the pickled egg (soaked in vinegar), but the salad - a kind of cabbage with herbs - tasted simply terrible.   
Drinks followed quite late. I asked for a beer - and surprisingly, there was a choice between Carlsberg and a Taiwanese beer. At least EVA Air had some local stuff to offer, in contrast to the mainland carriers on the days before. I ordered the Taiwanese beer which wasn't bad - at least one positive aspect in terms of catering...  

Enroute over the Taiwan Strait, shortly after passing the Penghu islands:






Cabin Tour & Approach
Time passed quickly, not least because of the enjoyable IFE. Before the plane started descending, we took some more shots of the cabin.


Picture by Satchmo

Amenities and plastic plants in the lavatory:



We couldn't see much in the darkness outside, but we could watch the approach on the moving map:



Right turn for final approach to runway 07L - now we could actually see the lights of Macau in the distance:



We touched down at Chek Lap Kok at 20:24 and arrived at the gate five minutes later - a total of 16 minutes ahead of schedule. I got some more registrations on the way to the baggage carousel, but the most interesting plane which caught our attention was AP-BAK, PIA's last remaining Boeing 747-200. To be precise, it's a 747-240 Combi - what a beauty:


Picture by Satchmo

More than an hour after leaving the airport we arrived in Kowloon and checked in again at the The Salisbury - YMCA of Hong Kong. Story to be continued...



Conclusion
Flying EVA Air was a positive experience in general: Ground staff and cabin crew members were friendly and polite, the check-in processes were fast and efficient, both flights were on-time, the aircraft cabins were clean and the seating comfort was good. Considering the short flying time, the lack of IFE on the 747 wasn't a major annoyance. The IFE on the A330 can't match the latest systems, but it's still absolutely sufficient for long-haul flights. However, the catering on both flights was completely disappointing - I had really expected more quality. Anyway, I wouldn't hesitate to fly EVA Air again - but I wouldn't mind trying rival China Airlines, too.

Next report: TSA-MZG-TSA on Transasia Airways and UNI Air


Best Regards,
PlaneHunter

[Edited 2009-01-31 03:09:30]


Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
37 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineGlobetraveller From Germany, joined Apr 2008, 379 posts, RR: 20
Reply 1, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hi there PlaneHunter,

Another great addition to your series of trip reports. Excellent pictures and interesting detail.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
In only a few hours I got a total of 40 new registrations.

Wow... I guess that's Hong Kong for you.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Not surprisingly, the seats - designed in the early 1990s and most likely installed on the aircraft in 1996 - can't match today's standards and look a bit worn.

The seats look like a blast from the past! I am quite surprised that Eva Air has not chosen to update these, because they are very inconsistent with the new seats on the 777-300ERs.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
but the content of the box was disappointing, both in terms of quantity (lunchtime!) and quality.

That does look rather dire! Did you eat all of it?  Smile

Thank you for all your efforts!

Globetraveller


User currently offlineBA319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8588 posts, RR: 54
Reply 2, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 32767 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Great report PH, thanks for sharing  Smile

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
The front wall and the wardrobe doors are brightly-painted...

- Hmm, not keen on this.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
snack boxes - or "meal boxes", as stated on the box. What I also found interesting was the remark "Please do not carry off aircraft". Do they want to reuse the boxes?

- How odd!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Not that I had expected a large meal - but the content of the box was disappointing, both in terms of quantity (lunchtime!) and quality.

- Looks rubbish, I don't know why, just expected more from EVA.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Chung Cheng Aviation Museum, located in the south-eastern area of the airport. Most important to us was the observation tower

- Nice, thanks for the tip, never knew about this.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
I was surprised that spaghetti Bolognese was the only option on a flight between Taipei and Hong Kong:

- What an odd choice for this part of the world!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
plastic plants in the lavatory

- Why??

Great stuff!

Look forward to the next installment.

Best Wishes

Mark



111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
User currently offlineCelestar From Singapore, joined Jul 2001, 410 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Thanks for the TR on EVA, we do not see that often.
I have a long love and hate relationship with EVA.
EVA was formed as a private company to compete against CI.
It was long taught as what the Taiwan private company can do against government backed bureaucracy. EVA was innovative in bringing out Economy Deluxe and we are talking about more than 15 years ago!
It is rather ironic that EVA continue to decline after some good starting years. Ironic enough to see with this competition, CI continue to be better and better, though its safety record need serious improvement. If you ask any Taiwanese, 80% will tell you that CI is much better now. It is like Lexus making BMW becoming better and better.
I remember about 2-3 years ago where EVA run into red, the company replaced its CEO and the new management went on a relentless pursuit of cost reduction. The morale was hurt, food and catering was cut. Flights were arranged so tight that delay was normal. Basically, the airline managed to turn around without loosing money but at the expense of its image.
I think the only respect I have for EVA is their safety record. So far, this has been the most outstanding side of this airline.


User currently offlineAT From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 1050 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 11 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Great trip report. And what a difference between the 747 and the 330 cabin.

Nice to see the PIA 747-Combi. I've flown on that very aircraft before. Don't they have two Combis in service? May be they already retired the other one?


User currently offlineFLIEGER67 From UK - England, joined Sep 2003, 5186 posts, RR: 55
Reply 5, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hey, PH,

another great story from your China travels.

EVA looks like not bad, but the catering, definitely not my choice!.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Next report: TSA-MZG-TSA on Transasia Airways and UNI Air

I´am looking forward into something more special!.

Greetings,
Markus (FLIEGER67)



Next: London City connections!.
User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6938 posts, RR: 77
Reply 6, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hi everybody, thanks for all your comments!

Quoting Globetraveller (Reply 1):
Wow... I guess that's Hong Kong for you.

Not just that...but HKG is really good for spotting.  Wink

Quoting Globetraveller (Reply 1):
The seats look like a blast from the past! I am quite surprised that Eva Air has not chosen to update these, because they are very inconsistent with the new seats on the 777-300ERs.

That's true, big difference between the old Evergreen Deluxe Class and the new Elite Class. The question is how long these 747s will remain in service.

Quoting Globetraveller (Reply 1):
That does look rather dire! Did you eat all of it?

Yes, it was lunchtime and I was hungry...  Wink

Quoting BA319-131 (Reply 2):
- Looks rubbish, I don't know why, just expected more from EVA.

Indeed, I'm wondering what CI has to offer on that route.

Quoting BA319-131 (Reply 2):
- Nice, thanks for the tip, never knew about this.

I can only recommend to go there.

Quoting BA319-131 (Reply 2):
- What an odd choice for this part of the world!

I had expected at least a Chinese alternative.

Quoting Celestar (Reply 3):
It is rather ironic that EVA continue to decline after some good starting years. Ironic enough to see with this competition, CI continue to be better and better, though its safety record need serious improvement. If you ask any Taiwanese, 80% will tell you that CI is much better now. It is like Lexus making BMW becoming better and better.

Interesting to hear, thanks for that.

Quoting Celestar (Reply 3):
I remember about 2-3 years ago where EVA run into red, the company replaced its CEO and the new management went on a relentless pursuit of cost reduction. The morale was hurt, food and catering was cut. Flights were arranged so tight that delay was normal. Basically, the airline managed to turn around without loosing money but at the expense of its image.

At least they managed to build up a competitive fleet of A330s and 77Ws - now it will be interesting to see how long the 747s remain in service.

Quoting Celestar (Reply 3):
I think the only respect I have for EVA is their safety record. So far, this has been the most outstanding side of this airline.

Especially compared to CI's safety record...

Quoting AT (Reply 4):
Nice to see the PIA 747-Combi. I've flown on that very aircraft before. Don't they have two Combis in service? May be they already retired the other one?

Yes, AP-BAT was retired in early 2008. AP-BAK had also been stored for a while, but was reactived again.

Quoting FLIEGER67 (Reply 5):
EVA looks like not bad, but the catering, definitely not my choice!.

BR needs to improve its catering, no doubts.


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlineAnonms From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 623 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 32767 times:



Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 6):
Indeed, I'm wondering what CI has to offer on that route.

Portion-wise, it's about the same, but CI's catering is much better than BR's in terms of taste, at least from my experience.

Quoting BA319-131 (Reply 2):
- What an odd choice for this part of the world!

Spaghetti's pretty common in Taiwan (surprisingly). In that sense, it's not that odd.



This is my signature.
User currently offlineEconojetter From Malaysia, joined May 2001, 430 posts, RR: 5
Reply 8, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Thank you for the report. It brings back fond memories of the mid-1990s when BR Evergreen Deluxe (they called it Economy Deluxe initially) was by far the most comfortable affordable option between the New York region and Southeast Asia. 38-inch pitch, wide seat, full leg rest, personal TV, and the chance to sit in the nose of a jumbo, all for a fare that was comparable to Economy on competing airlines!

http://i372.photobucket.com/albums/o.../China2008Taipei/BR852cabin2ch.jpg

I remember the old cabin crew uniforms: bright green with orange trim, just like the livery you could spot them from a mile away  Wink It's all very subdued now and the unique earnestness their inflight service used to possess seems to be missing. Do the cabin crew still bow in unison at the end of the service?


User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6938 posts, RR: 77
Reply 9, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 32767 times:



Quoting Anonms (Reply 7):
Portion-wise, it's about the same, but CI's catering is much better than BR's in terms of taste, at least from my experience.



Quoting Anonms (Reply 7):
Spaghetti's pretty common in Taiwan (surprisingly). In that sense, it's not that odd.

Thanks, interesting to know.

Quoting Econojetter (Reply 8):
38-inch pitch, wide seat, full leg rest, personal TV, and the chance to sit in the nose of a jumbo, all for a fare that was comparable to Economy on competing airlines!

It was indeed something revolutionarily new in the early 90s!

Quoting Econojetter (Reply 8):
Do the cabin crew still bow in unison at the end of the service?

I can't tell - I couldn't see them very often from my seat. Would be interesting to know.


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlineSandroZRH From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hey PH! Another well written, interesting report. The seating on the B744 is way outdated, not an aircraft i'd want to fly on a longhaul flight, if i had a choice. The food looks disappointing, but other than that, BR looks okish!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
I found the light green and grey color tones pleasing to the eyes

Really??  yuck 

Thank you again for taking your time to share your China/Taiwan adventure with us!


User currently offlineContinentalEWR From United States of America, joined May 2000, 3762 posts, RR: 13
Reply 11, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Not sure what is uglier. The EVA Air building colors in Taipei or the cabin interiors on their planes. They need a style make over. Yuck! That said, I hear it is a very good airline.

User currently offlineMorcegoa330 From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2008, 89 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hi PH.
Great TR and great pics too.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
...plastic plants in the lavatory

How bizarre.  no  Completely unnecessary in my opinion.  Smile

Cheers,

Ricardo



There's no place like around the world
User currently offlineElevate From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2009, 144 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hi PlaneHunter,

It's always been a pleasure viewing your work, and this report is definitely no let down!!

I'm looking forward to the Transasia Airways and UNI Air report(s)!


User currently offlineAnonms From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 623 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 1 day ago) and read 32767 times:



Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 10):
Hey PH! Another well written, interesting report. The seating on the B744 is way outdated, not an aircraft i'd want to fly on a longhaul flight, if i had a choice.

Actually, the ED seats in the 747s are some of the most comfortable airplane seats I've ever sat on, especially compared to BR's new Y seats that feel like park benches (I hear the new ED seats aren't very comfortable either).



This is my signature.
User currently offlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6672 posts, RR: 55
Reply 15, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Excellent report! I have been waiting for this one for a while!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
"Please do not carry off aircraft". Do they want to reuse the boxes?

LOL! Perhaps they are afraid that people will bring un-opened boxes off the plane and taste the food.....?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
content of the box was disappointing, both in terms of quantity (lunchtime!) and quality.

About my experience on BR as well; I flew BKK-TPE on their 77W and they did offer an option between Western and Chinese (I chose the Western) and it was pretty bad. I almost never complain about airline food but that meal on BR was just slightly better than SU out of SVO......

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
The system offers a wide selection of entertainment options:

Seems like they have improve the inflight entertainement system. I had much fewer
options and most of the content was in Chinese only.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Honestly, the meal was another disappointment

Seems much better than I had.

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineMashimaro1 From Australia, joined Dec 2007, 46 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 32767 times:



Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
I can't complain about the pickled egg (soaked in vinegar),

Haha, I think that's actually a tea egg. It's basically a normal egg left to soak/marinade in a tea mixture! Very common throughout Taiwan, HK and Singapore.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tea_egg


The other sandwich is quite....unappetising to say the least :P.


User currently offlineAirbuseric From Netherlands, joined Jan 2005, 4277 posts, RR: 51
Reply 17, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hi, PH,

I kinda liked this report. The A332 is a great plane, and I like their interior with BR. I didn't like the 744 interior and coloursettings, although for an Y class pax, you got at least still a good seat. Meals didn't attract me either...
So, I think it will do for the short HKG-TPE flight, but I hope BR provides some more quality on longer runs like TPE-BKK-AMS or to VIE.

Gruß
Eric



"The whole world steps aside for the man who knows where he is going"
User currently offlineSabena332 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

And another fantastic report with great pictures. Thanks for posting!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
The Evergreen Deluxe seats are sold as regular Economy seats on the HKG-TPE-HKG runs

Not bad, 38" pitch sounds very comfortable for the short hop from HKG to TPE.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
The sandwich (ham and cheese) was dry and tasteless

This is exactly what I thought when I saw the picture.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
* - Sky Hollywood: 19 movies (latest blockbusters and classic flicks)
* - Sky Concert Hall: More than 100 music CDs (playlist builder)
* - Sky TV: 53 TV features (shows, news, travelogues, children's programs etc.)
* - Kids' World: TV programs and music for younger travelers
* - Sky Fantasy: 10 video games
* - Sky Compass: Inflight data and maps with different zoom levels
* - SMS and E-mail
* - Sky Shop: Catalog with duty-free products and gift items
* - Information: EVA Air news, Evergreen Club updates and travel guides


Not bad, plenty of entertainemnt possibilities on long flights.

Quoting Airbuseric (Reply 17):
I like their interior with BR.

Me, too! The A330-200 interior looks great!

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Next report: TSA-MZG-TSA on Transasia Airways and UNI Air

I am looking forward!

Patrick


User currently offlineAkhmad From Netherlands, joined Sep 2005, 2500 posts, RR: 53
Reply 19, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 32767 times:



Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Not that I had expected a large meal - but the content of the box was disappointing, both in terms of quantity (lunchtime!) and quality.

I agree with you. It does not look anything we are used to on board an Asian carrier.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
Catering was an outright disappointment on that flight.

That is a pity.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
After checking in for our flight and enjoying a delicious meal in a Japanese restaurant...

I virtually ate it.  yummy 

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
I was surprised that spaghetti Bolognese was the only option on a flight between Taipei and Hong Kong:

Why did they do that? They could have served Asian noodles instead.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Thread starter):
I ordered the Taiwanese beer which wasn't bad - at least one positive aspect in terms of catering...

A locally brewed beer would not go wrong.

Great report, PlaneHunter!  Smile



Friends forever
User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6938 posts, RR: 77
Reply 20, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hello everybody, thanks for all new comments!

Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 10):
The seating on the B744 is way outdated, not an aircraft i'd want to fly on a longhaul flight, if i had a choice.

I wouldn't mind about the Evergreen Deluxe seating...but I would definitely avoid the Y class on BR's 744s.

Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 10):
Really??

Yes - I like it.

Quoting Morcegoa330 (Reply 12):
Completely unnecessary in my opinion.

Indeed, they could take real flowers.

Quoting Elevate (Reply 13):

It's always been a pleasure viewing your work, and this report is definitely no let down!!

I'm looking forward to the Transasia Airways and UNI Air report(s)!

Thanks! I try to get the next part ready in a few days.

Quoting The777Man (Reply 15):
LOL! Perhaps they are afraid that people will bring un-opened boxes off the plane and taste the food.....?

Yes, who knows. Too bad for them that certain passengers take pictures of everything...  Wink

Quoting The777Man (Reply 15):
About my experience on BR as well; I flew BKK-TPE on their 77W and they did offer an option between Western and Chinese (I chose the Western) and it was pretty bad. I almost never complain about airline food but that meal on BR was just slightly better than SU out of SVO......

Sounds really bad - so it's not necessarily better on longer flights.

Quoting Mashimaro1 (Reply 16):
Haha, I think that's actually a tea egg. It's basically a normal egg left to soak/marinade in a tea mixture! Very common throughout Taiwan, HK and Singapore.

Thanks! I remember a sour smell close to the tubs with similar eggs in a store in Taipei, so I guessed vinegar would be involved somehow. Interestingly, I also found recipes for pickled eggs looking quite similar.

Quoting Airbuseric (Reply 17):
So, I think it will do for the short HKG-TPE flight, but I hope BR provides some more quality on longer runs like TPE-BKK-AMS or to VIE.

Yes, I hope so, too. Probably I'll try to get on BR's 77W on a longer sector in the future.

Quoting Sabena332 (Reply 18):
And another fantastic report with great pictures. Thanks for posting!

Thanks, Patrick!

Quoting Sabena332 (Reply 18):
This is exactly what I thought when I saw the picture.

Yes, it just looks so dry...but you never know: I got a dark bread sandwich with cheese on the final LHR-MUC leg of our tour (LH) - it looked really good, but it was as dry as the BR sandwich...

Quoting Akhmad (Reply 19):
I virtually ate it.

I hope it was good!  Wink

Quoting Akhmad (Reply 19):
Why did they do that? They could have served Asian noodles instead.

Exactly, that's what I thought, too.


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlineContact Air From Germany, joined Apr 2001, 1154 posts, RR: 13
Reply 21, posted (5 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hi PH,

Nice to read another report from your Asia series - thanks for sharing your experiences. It was also interesting to see the difference between the older B747-400 and the newer A330.

Catering looks a bit strange indeed.

Regards
Christoph


User currently offlineNZ107 From New Zealand, joined Jul 2005, 6456 posts, RR: 38
Reply 22, posted (5 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

Hi PH,

Another interesting report. Still can't wait for that Air NZ one!

Those PTVs in Premium Economy look tiny! Must be the first generation of PTVs.. I guess there's not much time to watch much in a 1 and a half hour flight anyway.

That food certainly looked poor from here.. I wonder how China Airlines compares overall.

The decor, looks quite nice even though it has that outdated look to it.

From the picture overlooking the airport from the Chung Cheng Aviation Museum lookout tower, are there major renovation works in progress? It looks like dirt with stairs going right down the middle.

Thanks for sharing!

Regards,
Nicholas



It's all about the destination AND the journey.
User currently offlineAnonms From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 623 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (5 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 32767 times:



Quoting NZ107 (Reply 22):
From the picture overlooking the airport from the Chung Cheng Aviation Museum lookout tower, are there major renovation works in progress? It looks like dirt with stairs going right down the middle.

I think they're building a new transit hotel and CI's new headquarters.

Quoting Akhmad (Reply 19):
Why did they do that? They could have served Asian noodles instead.

Spaghetti's decently popular in Taiwan.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 20):
Thanks! I try to get the next part ready in a few days.

I'm looking forward to seeing your domestic flight experience; GE wasn't too bad when I flew them to Kinmen.



This is my signature.
User currently offlineAbrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5129 posts, RR: 55
Reply 24, posted (5 years 10 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 32767 times:

PH,

Thanks for this great and rare report. BR seems to be very run-of-the-mill ... especially on this sector. I wonder if it has something to do with this particular routing. Also, is the combi section in the front of the 744? I don't remember ever being on one where that has been the case.

Thanks for writing the report. I know how hard they are to write.

Saludos,
A.



Live, and let live.
25 HOONS90 : Excellent trip report! I've flown on two flights with EVA, and the food on those flights were terrible too. Their Y seats on the 747-400 are very comf
26 Econojetter : The food described here comes across worse than what I have had on longer BR flights, but I wouldn't expect much more on a 1.5-hour flight. I remember
27 Anonms : Not for the Combis; in the Combis, it's ED in the nose until the stairs, Y until the rear bulkhead, and business in the upper deck. The normal 744s h
28 Palmjet : PH Thanks for another great report. Also fantastic to see that you went to the aviation museum at TPE. I went there many years ago (in Dec 1990) and t
29 Ryanair!!! : Thanks for this report. It seems that BR hasn't got around to upgrading ALL their 744s because I believe there are some already flying with the new in
30 PlaneHunter : Hi everybody, thanks for all new comments! Thanks, Christoph! Would be nice to see an upgraded cabin on the 747 combis, but who knows what the fleet p
31 Anonms : Really? I thought they decided to just renovate T1; after CI moved east-bound flights to T2, T1 gets rather empty while T2 gets really crowded. Oo"
32 Lufthansa747 : Hi PH, Great report as usual! The 74E looks like an ancient 742 as far as especially the Y seats go... And the food just bad. CX not only offers sandw
33 Coolfish1103 : Information and corrections: Constructions: 1. MRT from Taipei Taoyuan International Airport to Taipei City. 2. MRT from Taipei Taoyuan International
34 Anonms : I usually fly SFO-TPE-SFO; IMO CI's catering is better than BR's on that route. If they just close half of the terminal, work on that half, then open
35 PlaneHunter : Hello everybody, thanks for your new comments. That answers some questions. I had read that Terminal 3 construction work would start in 2008 - it seem
36 Leskova : There I was reading through report number 3 just a short while ago and finishing with something like "looking forward to the next report" - and then I
37 PlaneHunter : Hi Frank, thanks a lot! I'll try to get the next part online soon. I had similar thoughts prior to my trip... I wasn't sure in the first moment, but
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