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Tokyo To Siem Reap On DL/MH - Y Class  
User currently offlineSR117 From Mexico, joined Jun 2000, 799 posts, RR: 1
Posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 10071 times:

Background

The ruins of Angkor Wat are surely on the top of any bucket list; when combined with the many excellent Siem Reap hotels at rock bottom rates it made the trip to Cambodia too much to resist. Now the fun part would be actually getting there.

Getting to REP can be easy or rather complicated, depending on the gateways you choose. ICN is the easiest from North America as both Asiana and Korean fly directly to REP, but unfortunately their flights were very full, so the plan was to fly to Singapore on Delta and then fly to Siem Reap via KUL on Malaysia Airlines.

The first leg though was on Delta's wonderfully convenient LAX-HND, the route has been covered in the past so I'll just post a few pics from the flight.




Busy night at LAX.


Crossing the Pacific in 13D.


Takeoff from LAX.


Couscous, duck, soup and salad.


Yum ! mustard chicken and spaetzle.


Dessert.


Southern route tonight.


Mmmm, breakfast.


I love arriving in Central Tokyo.


Land-Ho !


Tokyo Disney and the new Sky Tree in view.


Tokyo Tower and the Rainbow Bridge.


Touchdown, 4:38am.


That ANA 777 taxiing in front of us took off from LAX a few minutes before us.


Good Morning Haneda.


Speedbird from Heathrow.


ANA and DL from LAX, AA from JFK. It was barely 5am yet it was already very hot and humid.

7 Hours in Tokyo

While some people would balk at the prospect of a 12 hour connection, I thought it was a fun idea, especially in Tokyo. Armed with a one day metro pass, and with my bags safely stored in a handy train station locker, we set off to hit some selected Tokyo spots.


Efficiency Baby !!


710yen and the Tokyo Metro is your own personal limo for a day.


That hat looks like…


Hie Shrine in Akasaka.


Traditional and modern mix.


Pictured: Drunk women reminiscing


Fashionable Omotesando.


Outside the Meiji Shrine.


Meiji Shrine in the bright summer sunlight.


Beautiful Meiji Shrine.


No Tokyo visit is complete without a pilgrimage to Mos Burger. Mmmm BLT Burger.


Strolling around Kagurazaka.


Wonderful side streets.


Walking back down to Iidabashi Station.


Glitzy Shiodome.

By midday the heat and humidity made it uncomfortable to be outside so we called it a day and headed for some well deserved lunch before starting the long treck to Narita.


Mouth watering Hainan chicken rice, complete with unlimited iced tea for about 800 yen.

There was plenty of time to spot in Narita, but the oppressive heat and humidity were too much after a few minutes, going inside the air conditioned terminal started to sound like a much better idea.

Once check in and immigration formalities were completed, I took a badly needed shower in the Delta Skyclub where it was nice to just relax for a few hours while watching the action outside..


Ahhh yes, spotting from within air conditioned walls.


Whoa ! Big Lady.

DL281
A330-200
18:20-00:30+1
NRT-SIN
15 JUL 11


After a few hours of plane watching and gin and tonics, it was time to board DL281 to Singapore. I had been assigned a nice window in the bulkhead row of this A330-200 which means I'd get to try out DL's then brand new Economy Comfort product.




Nice view from my seat.

Initial impressions of the cabin were good, the seats were regular economy seats but recline is very much improved; although being the bulkhead row it was hard to tell how improved legroom was vs regular economy. The flight today was full except for a few empty seats in Y.



Taxiing for departure.


Sunset Departure.


The long long beaches of Chiba.


Our route takes us well south of Honshu.


In flight Service

Service for this flight consisted of dinner after takeoff and water/juice runs after that. Dinner was nothing to get too excited about but I've certainly had worse in Y (MX and UA spring to mind).

A good thing about Economy Comfort vs regular economy is that drinks and liquor are free in EC, I asked for a gin and tonic and for some reason the FA heard me ask for a double; "I'll serve you another one as soon as you finish this one". Well I certainly won't complain about that. Later on she did check up and brought me my second GT, thumbs up to her.


Beef with Rice.


Close Up.

The crew did their job efficiently and politely, after the main meal service they were frequently up and down the aisle with water, duty free and whatnot. Service in Economy isn't lavish by any means but it's not terrible either, let's just say it gets the job done.

When flying in Economy, exhaustion is truly your best friend. All that walking around Tokyo along with the 2 GT's helped me sleep through most of the flight.

Arrival in Singapore was on time, although I could have cared less if we were delayed as there were 6 hours to kill at Changi. With the next flight leaving at 6:45am it didn't really make much sense to get a hotel.


Singapore Transit

If you're going to be stuck at an airport overnight, it might as well be Changi ; ) Most of the prime real estate had already been staked out, all the comfy couches had their own drooling, teddy bear hugging person on them. But I wasn't really planning on sleeping always so I wasn't too sad about it.


Busy airport at midnight.


That only needs a monkey hanging around and the rainforest picture is complete.

Even after midnight there's always some sort of activity going on, with late night departures here and there, as well as some oddball arrivals like SQ's LAX-NRT-SIN flight. Soon the late night calm gave way to the first passengers arriving for morning flights.

At around 4:45am a rather tired looking SATS agent arrived at the MH service desk in T2, and let me tell you, her face totally said "I got up at 2am and need to get me some coffee, GRRRR".

She wasn't too happy that we had decided to stay airside and not check in at the main counter, but she gave us our seats anyways. I really was getting excited about trying out Malaysia Airlines for the first time, even if it was just a couple of short hauls.


Ready for departure.

MH602
737-400
SIN-KUL
6:45-7:45
16 JUL 11


Short 40 minute flight, not much to be said, first impression of the colorful MH 737 cabin was that it looks fun, the seats were a bit tired when you looked closely though.


Good morning MH.


Who needs coffee?


Goodbye Singapore.

It is unfortunate that I could not go back and give Madame 2am a big fat kiss. Despite her grumpiness she gave me the best seat in the house, what legroom !


Awesomeness !

Surprisingly enough you do get service on this 30 minute flight. Crew went around with peanuts and beverages.


Peanuts, the fancy roasted kind   Chugged down with pink guava juice.


We're here already ? that was a short flight.


Transit in Kuala Lumpur

I'd been to KUL once before but it didn't really count as it was to that ratty tatty LCC terminal. By contrast, the main terminal which full service airlines use is very nice. Unfortunately my stay there was not quite as happy as I expected.

When going to the transfer counter to check in for the flight to REP, we were presented with 2 rather unattractive choices. We could either go through immigration to the main check in counter to stand by for the REP flight (8 seats left and 13 people already on stand-by above us), or fly to Phnom Penh instead and be given seats for that flight right there at the transfer counter; flying to PNH wouldn't have been so bad if it didn't mean a 5-6 hour bus ride to Siem Reap from there.

Pick your poison indeed ! As flights to REP are not daily it seemed best to just bite the bullet and fly to PNH instead. Better to have a bird in hand...

The flight to Phnom Penh was departing soon so there wasn't much time to wander around the famous KLIA, still, the large windows in each gate made spotting from the gate easy.

MH754
737-400
KUL-PNH
9:30-10:20
17 JUL 11



KLIA at last. Love those star like ceiling lights.


Looks like all the heavies are in the midfield terminal.


Our ride to Phnom Penh.

We boarded another one of MH's 737-400's. Cabin condition was also good and load was about 50%.


The world famous MH red seats.


Meal service starting.

As this flight was around 90 minutes service was much more substantial. We were offered a choice of omelette for breakfast or the famous nasi lemak.

An omelette is an omelette is an omelette, let's face it, western breakfasts are usually boring ; ) Therefore I decided to go for MH's signature dish.


Nasi Lemak.

I knew there was going to be some level of fishyness but this was just fish squared. The stew itself seemed to be made with fish and prawns, and of course, the topping was fried little fishies ; ) The sambal sauce itself had a very nice flavor, as did the creamy coconut rice, finished as much as I could and I downed it with a nice cold beer.


Good looking tray.


Breakfast.

The crew was very nice and one of them even went to our seats to ask what airline we worked for and such.

By this time, crew were cleaning up the cabin and preparing for landing. Weather in Cambodia today was mostly clear, dotted with puffy white clouds. It was really interesting to see how nature seemed dominant in this part of the world, infrastructure and cities really seemed very basic and there was no sight of heavy industry.


Beautiful skies.


The great chocolate milk river.


Evidence of recent rains.

There was not much in the way of traffic when we landed in PNH which was good news as we were applying for a visa on arrival.


Final approach to Phnom Penh.

Malaysia Airlines was a good ride, no complaints at all. In all honesty though, they were at the same level as most other asian legacies I've flown, their product didn't seem much different from Thai or China Airlines, cabin crews were however all very nice so that was the only area where I'd say MH was above average.

PNH Arrival

The visa on arrival process is fascinating and very quick. You fill out your forms, pay the 20usd fee and your passport is thrown into a veritable assembly line of bureaucracy. About 5 minutes later your name is called out and your passport given back with a shiny new cambodian visa. Now if only getting a russian visa were so simple…

Phnom Penh's airport is very basic and small. After much asking around, we managed to find the ticket office for Angkor Air to inquire about flying into REP, but the only seats available that day were going for around a million dollars on a flight six hours later at 4pm… no thanks.

By land, the only 2 options for getting to Siem Reap from Phnom Penh are either taking a bus or haggling with a taxi. Being a bad haggler I just went for the bus, and it sounded like a good deal at about 10usd.

Man, that was one loooong bus ride, 6 hours never seemed longer ; ) The mostly 2 lane highway between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap is not in the best state so the ride is bumpy. IFE consisted of of Cambodian music videos and Rambo 1 and 2, yup you guessed it, dubbed in Khmer  
Back of the bus, literally.

Trust me, if you ever go to Siem Reap, do whatever you can to actually FLY there ; )


Wilderness.


Fields.


Farms.

Once you're in Siem Reap though you're totally golden. Truly an oasis in the middle of the jungle. Was it worth the long ride? Oh yes, every second, ok, maybe not the bus part  .


Ahhh finally.

Conclusions

This was probably my longest journey to date timewise, I was privileged to witness so many contrasts in such a short amount of time, from the comfort of a transatlantic lie flat in a 777, to the long bumpy ride in the bus. From the ultra modern Shiodome in Tokyo, to the rice fields of Cambodia where oxen still plough the fields, truly amazing.

Questions and comments are welcome !

Photos were taken with a Nikon D90 DLSR and a Canon S90 Point and Shoot.

Ricardo

Continued here: Escape From Siem Reap On Korean Air - Y Class (by SR117 Jan 14 2012 in Trip Reports)


Previous Reports:

KE A380 ICN-LAX In J Class: The Flying Winnebago (by SR117 Nov 2 2011 in Trip Reports)
Foot Rubs And Naked Planespotting: BKK-NGO With TG (by SR117 Oct 15 2011 in Trip Reports)
Shorthaul With Lufthansa And Niki: MUC-VIE-MXP (by SR117 Oct 12 2011 in Trip Reports)
DL Inaugural To Haneda And Back, NRT-HKG RT Bonus! (by SR117 Mar 15 2011 in Trip Reports)
Mexicana Long Haul To EZE: Part 1 (by SR117 Nov 21 2009 in Trip Reports)
AeroMexico From Tijuana To Paris In Clase Premier (by SR117 Feb 24 2010 in Trip Reports)
Adventures In Kyushu: Japan With NH And DL (by sr117 Nov 25 2010 in Trip Reports)
Not Quite Hell: LH Economy From FRA To HKG (by SR117 Aug 27 2009 in Trip Reports)
OZ221 Asiana Hanggong JFK-ICN In Steerage (by SR117 Aug 18 2009 in Trip Reports)
All Nippon Airways To Hong Kong - Part 1 (by SR117 Nov 27 2008 in Trip Reports)

[Edited 2012-01-14 00:30:31]

19 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinelychemsa From United States of America, joined Oct 2009, 1202 posts, RR: 3
Reply 1, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 9849 times:

Did you need any shots?

User currently offlinelukeyboy95 From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2008, 1092 posts, RR: 31
Reply 2, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 9674 times:

Good and cheery report Ricardo.

Thanks very much for posting this.

I visited Kampuchea 4 years ago and it is impressively getting it's name on the tourist map. Well - how could it not with Angkor . . . Also did that bus and found it not quite so bad - although it is pretty unexceptional scenery that it travels through admittedly. Amazing with all these tourism dollars pouring in that the government has still not got its act to together and tarred their main highway.

MH is less appealing for me these days - but this service looked pretty decent. Tokyo looked decent too . . . Yes - I think many people are more than happy to overnight at Changi given it's excellent reputation.

Rgds

Luke



Breaking down the stereotypes - one by one
User currently offline9MMAR From Malaysia, joined Jul 2006, 2110 posts, RR: 18
Reply 3, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 9547 times:

Hi SR117.

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
KLIA at last. Love those star like ceiling lights.

Glad that you finally made it to the KUL Main Terminal. Before someone mentioned that the airport looks empty, a white elephant et al as per your photos might suggested, just FYI, KUL handled 37.7 million passengers in 2011, and you contributed to the numbers as well.

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
I knew there was going to be some level of fishyness but this was just fish squared. The stew itself seemed to be made with fish and prawns, and of course, the topping was fried little fishies ; ) The sambal sauce itself had a very nice flavor, as did the creamy coconut rice

As a local who eat Nasi Lemak almost everyday for breakfast/brunch for nearly 32 years, I am confident to say that there is no fish involved in the preparation of the meal and its accompanying prawn sambal paste, except the anchovies (the fried little fishies) that you sprinkle with the fried peanut on the rice before eating it.

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
Good looking tray.

That is MH's infamous snackbox, made from sugarcane biodegradable material. Mark I of the box was launched amid a thunderous protests and disapprovals from MH fliers in October 2007, part of MH's cost cutting efforts. The one you get here is the much improved snackbox Mark V.


User currently offlineSRQKEF From Iceland, joined Jun 2011, 886 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 8805 times:

The first report of yours that I read, and I literally fell in love with it!  

Great pictures! Seems like you had an exotic journey!

Hope to read more from you in the future. Great report!

Rgds,
Sveinn



Flights flown: 280 - Airlines: 40 - Airports: 64 - Next flights: KEF-BOS-EWR-PBI-TPA/SFB-KEF
User currently offlinetriple7man From Thailand, joined May 2005, 743 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 5 days ago) and read 8278 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
ANA and DL from LAX, AA from JFK. It was barely 5am yet it was already very hot and humid.

AA flight 135 arrived from JFK at 10:30 the previous night. It departs for JFK as AA 134 at 6:40AM. I took it this summer. The times for international flights at HND are limited between 10PM and 7AM. I flew from BKK-HND the previous afternoon and overnighted at HND.

Your pics in Tokyo, especially the one of Shiodome brought back many happy memories for one who used to live there.

I have flown DL BKK-NRT on an A330. The last time I got a seat in Economy Comfort. The inflight service was very good and I like flying DL on this route.



Have you kissed a 777 today?
User currently offlineSR117 From Mexico, joined Jun 2000, 799 posts, RR: 1
Reply 6, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 8232 times:

Quoting lychemsa (Reply 1):
Did you need any shots?

The areas around Siem Reap are supposedly low risk. Risk might be higher during sunrise/sunset, but even then, it's supposedly low. I didn't get any shots and was fine, but as with everything, it all depends on how comfortable you are with risks and odds.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 2):
Also did that bus and found it not quite so bad - although it is pretty unexceptional scenery that it travels through admittedly. Amazing with all these tourism dollars pouring in that the government has still not got its act to together and tarred their main highway.

Thanks for the comments Luke ! I had heard the same comments about the highway, meaning that it was in excellent condition and perfect for a long bus ride. I would have thought that the road between the two main cities in the country would surely be in good condition. Parts of it indeed were fine, but there were many, especially in the rural areas where it was very very deteriorated. Surely it has to do with the monsoon wreaking havoc on it every year though.

Quoting lukeyboy95 (Reply 2):
MH is less appealing for me these days - but this service looked pretty decent. Tokyo looked decent too . . . Yes - I think many people are more than happy to overnight at Changi given it's excellent reputation.

Indeed, MH is still good although unspectacular save for the very nice crews flying for them.

Quoting 9MMAR (Reply 3):
Glad that you finally made it to the KUL Main Terminal. Before someone mentioned that the airport looks empty, a white elephant et al as per your photos might suggested, just FYI, KUL handled 37.7 million passengers in 2011, and you contributed to the numbers as well.

Thanks for the comments ; ) Indeed I was glad to see it up close, and it did look very good. I don't think it seemed empty at all actually, it wasn't crowded by any means but there were plenty of people out and about.

Quoting 9MMAR (Reply 3):
As a local who eat Nasi Lemak almost everyday for breakfast/brunch for nearly 32 years, I am confident to say that there is no fish involved in the preparation of the meal and its accompanying prawn sambal paste, except the anchovies (the fried little fishies) that you sprinkle with the fried peanut on the rice before eating it.

Thank you very much for the clarification ! My apologies for not phrasing things better. I'm actually not that fond of seafood in general. Even then I did eat most of my Nasi Lemak, prawns and all, being a member of the Clean Plate Club I did not want to put my membership in jeopardy, hehe. Still, other than the prawns, there was another shredded white meat in the dish which I had assumed was fish. Sorry if I got it wrong   I actually got the same Nasi Lemak as famous a.netter Ryanair!!! did on this trip report: Just Get Me The Hell To Perth! On MH... (by Ryanair!!! Jul 18 2011 in Trip Reports)

Quoting 9MMAR (Reply 3):

That is MH's infamous snackbox, made from sugarcane biodegradable material.

Ahh yes, I had heard of the uproar and I'm very glad I got to see the upgraded version, the contents of the box were perfectly adequate for the stage lenght of the flight. It's also very nice to see that the contents are biodegradable, it always makes me feel bad to think about all the plastic that is used on flights every day...

Quoting SRQKEF (Reply 4):
The first report of yours that I read, and I literally fell in love with it!

Great pictures! Seems like you had an exotic journey!

Hope to read more from you in the future. Great report!

Thanks a lot Sveinn, glad you enjoyed it !!


User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5100 posts, RR: 55
Reply 7, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 8209 times:

Thanks for the report. KE looks above average as usual. BTW, who are you with (that allows the NRSA)?

Saludos,
A.



Live, and let live.
User currently offlineSR117 From Mexico, joined Jun 2000, 799 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 8209 times:

Quoting triple7man (Reply 5):
AA flight 135 arrived from JFK at 10:30 the previous night. It departs for JFK as AA 134 at 6:40AM. I took it this summer. The times for international flights at HND are limited between 10PM and 7AM. I flew from BKK-HND the previous afternoon and overnighted at HND.

Your pics in Tokyo, especially the one of Shiodome brought back many happy memories for one who used to live there.

I have flown DL BKK-NRT on an A330. The last time I got a seat in Economy Comfort. The inflight service was very good and I like flying DL on this route.

Thanks a lot Michael, it's a funny thing, although I know Shiodome isn't a particularly traditional area of Tokyo, I stayed in the area the first time I visited and it earned a place in my heart since then. Along with the proximity to Ginza, the many restaurants around, the Hamarikyu Gardens, I really do love the area !

Hopefully AA should have the JFK flight back for this summer. For DL, the DTW flight was also suspended until April this year.


User currently offlineSR117 From Mexico, joined Jun 2000, 799 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 8192 times:

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 7):
Thanks for the report. KE looks above average as usual. BTW, who are you with (that allows the NRSA)?

Saludos,
A.

Thanks a lot for the comments. Indeed Korean was pretty good, I was impressed with their hardware. Check your messages for more details ; )

Ricardo


User currently offlineEddieDude From Mexico, joined Nov 2003, 7582 posts, RR: 42
Reply 10, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 8192 times:

Hello Ricardo,

Happy New Year! Wish you amazing travels this year. More travels for you, more TRs for us!  By the way, thanks a lot for taking the time to write this report and for uploading your incredible pictures.  

I am happy that you were able to visit Angkor Wat. Amazing, isn't it? This TR was especially interesting to me because I was in Singapore, Siem Reap and Phnom Penh in May of 2011, and I flew KE and DL to get there from NYC and back. I really wanted to read what your experience had been! In addition, I really enjoy your style of writing, so it is a treat whenever you upload a new report. Here is mine in case you want to compare notes: Asian Tour May 2011. Part I: JFK-ICN-REP On KE (by EddieDude Jul 7 2011 in Trip Reports)

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
ICN is the easiest from North America as both Asiana and Korean fly directly to REP, but unfortunately their flights were very full, so the plan was to fly to Singapore on Delta and then fly to Siem Reap via KUL on Malaysia Airlines.

That was my reasoning too. Plus, I am a SkyMiles member, so I really wanted to fly SkyTeam carriers all the way if possible.

I was lucky to find seats on JFK-ICN (KE 747-400) and ICN-REP (KE 737-800), considering that I did not book very far in advance. The JFK-ICN flight was 100% full in my case, whereas the ICN-REP flight had some empty seats. The other options for reaching Cambodia that I looked at involved flying Silk Air and Jetstar Asia from SIN but I wanted to keep the number of stops to a minimum because I did not have that much time.

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
Delta's wonderfully convenient LAX-HND

What is your opinion on DL's long haul business class service. The catering looks good. I wonder whether it is on par with or better than AA and UA. By the same token, what do you think of the seat and the herringbone layout?

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
When going to the transfer counter to check in for the flight to REP, we were presented with 2 rather unattractive choices. We could either go through immigration to the main check in counter to stand by for the REP flight (8 seats left and 13 people already on stand-by above us), or fly to Phnom Penh instead and be given seats for that flight right there at the transfer counter; flying to PNH wouldn't have been so bad if it didn't mean a 5-6 hour bus ride to Siem Reap from there.

Sorry you could not take the flight you had planned and that you had to fly to PNH instead. I thought PNH was not a bad airport. Small but quite decent. The airside part is fine... maybe the landside part is showing its age a bit. The city is interesting. I don't know if you felt tempted to visit. I think it has a lot of potential, but I was overwhelmed by the hoards of tuk tuk drivers who "attack" tourists, by the huge number of motorcycles driven by reckless daredevils, the traffic and noise, and generally the disorganization (smells, blocked sidewalks, etc.).

I was driven in a private car from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh. It was a 4 or 4.5 hour drive in my case, and the landscape was quite picturesque. As you see, there is very little infrastructure, the road is lined with mostly small houses and temples. I originally wanted to take the boat but it seems it's been quite a while since there was boat service. Apparently the water level on the lake is quite low, or some parts of it may even be dry.

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
The visa on arrival process is fascinating and very quick. You fill out your forms, pay the 20usd fee and your passport is thrown into a veritable assembly line of bureaucracy. About 5 minutes later your name is called out and your passport given back with a shiny new cambodian visa. Now if only getting a russian visa were so simple…

Yes, I thought the process was fascinating as you put it. I don't know how it went in your case, but I filled the visa application form on the plane but did not have pictures with me. Once we landed, we were divided into three groups. One for people who had an online visa, who went straight to a special desk right before baggage claim; one for people who were going to pay for the visa and had pics; and one for people who had to pay for the visa but did not have pictures. The lack of pictures was overcome by a special payment of one or two dollars. LOL.

Quoting lychemsa (Reply 1):
Did you need any shots?

I did not. SR117?

Again, Ricardo, thanks a lot for the TR. I will now read your return TR.  



Next flights: MEX-GRU (AM 77E), GRU-GIG (JJ A320), SDU-CGH (G3 73H), GRU-MEX (JJ A332).
User currently offlineSR117 From Mexico, joined Jun 2000, 799 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 8124 times:

Quoting EddieDude (Reply 10):

Happy New Year! Wish you amazing travels this year. More travels for you, more TRs for us! By the way, thanks a lot for taking the time to write this report and for uploading your incredible pictures.

Hey Eddie, long time no see, thanks, wish you good travels this year as well ; ) I did check out your report and was anxious to read about your SIN-NRT experience on DL.

Quoting EddieDude (Reply 10):

What is your opinion on DL's long haul business class service. The catering looks good. I wonder whether it is on par with or better than AA and UA. By the same token, what do you think of the seat and the herringbone layout?

I honestly haven't had that much business experience in J, only flown on UA, DL, KE and AM. Out of the 4 I'd rank DL and KE at the top, closely followed by AM and UA last. KE is excellent servicewise and they cook your steak to order, however, Delta usually has more variety when it comes to meal options. If you're lucky, Delta will provide you excellent business class service with an excellent product as well. Honestly speaking, catering on all my Delta transpacific flights has been very good, with the only bad spot going to one or two dried up steaks (that's why I usually go for the chicken). The herringbone layout isn't that bad as long as you have a window. You just have to stretch out your neck a bit if you wanna look out.

Quoting EddieDude (Reply 10):
Sorry you could not take the flight you had planned and that you had to fly to PNH instead. I thought PNH was not a bad airport. Small but quite decent. The airside part is fine... maybe the landside part is showing its age a bit. The city is interesting. I don't know if you felt tempted to visit. I think it has a lot of potential, but I was overwhelmed by the hoards of tuk tuk drivers who "attack" tourists, by the huge number of motorcycles driven by reckless daredevils, the traffic and noise, and generally the disorganization (smells, blocked sidewalks, etc.).

Indeed PNH did not seem that bad, I was actually sorry I couldn;t stay and relax a bit longer. the only thing I saw of the city was during the taxi ride between the airport and the bus station.

I would have loved to arrange private transportation between PNH and REP, but unfortunately it was all last minute, I had hoped to avoid the entire land transit thing so I didn't arrange for transportation : ( I really should have !

Quoting EddieDude (Reply 10):

Yes, I thought the process was fascinating as you put it. I don't know how it went in your case, but I filled the visa application form on the plane but did not have pictures with me. Once we landed, we were divided into three groups. One for people who had an online visa, who went straight to a special desk right before baggage claim; one for people who were going to pay for the visa and had pics; and one for people who had to pay for the visa but did not have pictures. The lack of pictures was overcome by a special payment of one or two dollars. LOL.

Ha, I had read about the process quite a bit before flying in and was prepared for everything, you probably know well but, being Mexican, I was armed with my backup set of paperwork just in case they wanted to ask for something exotic  

I did not fill the visa application until I was on the ground, and I filled it quite quick as there was a Dragonair A320 arriving right on our heels and I wanted to beat all of their passengers. I did not see any line separation but I wasn't really paying too much attention.

It was surprising to see they had a very well oiled machine running at the airport. I honestly wish getting a travel visa was quite as easy everywhere  
Quoting EddieDude (Reply 10):
I did not. SR117?

I did not, a friend of mine did but I decided to try my luck. Had no problems whatsoever, although I also don't remember finding any mosquitoes, maybe it was the season..


User currently offlineba319-131 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 8546 posts, RR: 54
Reply 12, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 7898 times:
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Great report, thanks for sharing.

Looks like the DL business product is perhaps the best of the US carriers at the moment when crossing the pacific, hard product and catering wise.

Like the pictures, especially the few from Cambodai - btw, thanks for the info re the via process, worth knowing.

Cheers

Mark



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User currently offlinegabrielchew From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 3272 posts, RR: 12
Reply 13, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 7328 times:

Intersting report Ricardo, thanks!

Looks like you had a nice day out in Tokyo before flying down to SIN. I'm confused why you were denied boarding to the REP flight you you were already checked in from SIN. Surely MH have a responsiblity to get you to REP (where you paid to go!) rather than somewhere else in the country. The least they should have done is to organise a domestic flight and/or have ground crew help you arrange a bus to REP. Very poor on MHs behalf. Still, like you said, the bus is worth visiting Angkor Wat, an amazing place. I went in 2003 - we drove from Saigon to Phono Penhg, then flew to REP, then continued by bus to Bangkok - some awful roads!



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User currently offline767747 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 1939 posts, RR: 24
Reply 14, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 7032 times:
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Great report, SR117!

Nice to see a report from you again- You have incredible photos in each report you do!

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
The ruins of Angkor Wat are surely on the top of any bucket list;

On mine as well! I'd love to visit.

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
A good thing about Economy Comfort vs regular economy is that drinks and liquor are free in EC, I asked for a gin and tonic and for some reason the FA heard me ask for a double; "I'll serve you another one as soon as you finish this one". Well I certainly won't complain about that. Later on she did check up and brought me my second GT, thumbs up to her.

What nice service. So, DL does not serve free liquor in regular Economy on International flights? Interesting ... When I flew NW MSP-LGW in Y back in Jan 2008, we had wine/beer free in Economy throughout the whole flight.

Looking forward to the return!

Matthew


User currently offlineBobLoblaw From United States of America, joined Jan 2012, 1725 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 6914 times:

Quoting SR117 (Thread starter):
A good thing about Economy Comfort vs regular economy is that drinks and liquor are free in EC

Arent DL's drinks free across the pacific and intra-Asia in Y?


User currently offlineSR117 From Mexico, joined Jun 2000, 799 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 6342 times:

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 12):
Great report, thanks for sharing.

Looks like the DL business product is perhaps the best of the US carriers at the moment when crossing the pacific, hard product and catering wise.

Hey Mark, thanks for the comments. I'm inclined to agree, although AA First is supposed to be pretty good in the catering department (by US airline standards of course), I found DL to be competitive in J class, at least with regards to KE. More often than not, service is also very friendly.

Quoting ba319-131 (Reply 12):
Like the pictures, especially the few from Cambodai - btw, thanks for the info re the via process, worth knowing.

I was anxious that the process would be complicated but it was surprisingly simple. And even with 2 planes arriving at the same time it didn't take long. Cambodia also lets you apply for an e-visa. However as I like to keep my travel plans flexible up to the last minute, this really wasn't an option.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 13):
Looks like you had a nice day out in Tokyo before flying down to SIN. I'm confused why you were denied boarding to the REP flight you you were already checked in from SIN. Surely MH have a responsiblity to get you to REP (where you paid to go!) rather than somewhere else in the country. The least they should have done is to organise a domestic flight and/or have ground crew help you arrange a bus to REP. Very poor on MHs behalf. Still, like you said, the bus is worth visiting Angkor Wat, an amazing place. I went in 2003 - we drove from Saigon to Phono Penhg, then flew to REP, then continued by bus to Bangkok - some awful roads!

Hey Gabriel, thanks for the comments. Ahh yes it's hard not to have an enjoyable time in Tokyo ; )

Was flying using space available tickets, hence one is much akin to a scavenger, hoping for empty seats on the plane hehe. There's usually tools available to verify if there's space, you can check booking engines to see what fare buckets are on sale, which is a good indication usually. The KUL-REP flight actually didn't look bad but this is an inexact science, irrops and rebookings can mean that things can change in an instant which is why you always need to have multiple backup plans.

That sounds like some very interesting drives btw.. I wish I could have stopped at more remote locations to check things out.

Quoting 767747 (Reply 14):
What nice service. So, DL does not serve free liquor in regular Economy on International flights? Interesting ... When I flew NW MSP-LGW in Y back in Jan 2008, we had wine/beer free in Economy throughout the whole flight.

Looking forward to the return!

Matthew

Thanks for the nice comments Matthew. Actually, you do get free wine and beer in economy, however cocktails are 6 dollars I think. Y+ gets the free cocktails as well.

Quoting BobLoblaw (Reply 15):
Arent DL's drinks free across the pacific and intra-Asia in Y?

According to the DL site, Y gets free wine, beer and sake on international flights from the US that are more than 6 hours as well as intra-asia flights.

Ricardo


User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 15
Reply 17, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 6096 times:

Hi there

Great report that you've got and Stunning pics. Delta Economy does not look bad at all.
J looks great as well, just those downsized portions!
MH looks great as well
Thanks for sharing!

Greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlineonlywaytofly From United States of America, joined Mar 2011, 17 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (2 years 8 months 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 5901 times:

Ricardo - Brilliant report and photos as always. Such an exotic destination. I'm inspired to visit. Thank you for sharing.


I also enjoy your Flickr photostream. I check in frequently. You and I have had several near-misses in the last 1.5 years!

Thanks again for the great report(s) and safe travels. Best - Christian



User currently offlineSR117 From Mexico, joined Jun 2000, 799 posts, RR: 1
Reply 19, posted (2 years 8 months 4 days 19 hours ago) and read 5247 times:

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 17):
Great report that you've got and Stunning pics. Delta Economy does not look bad at all.
J looks great as well, just those downsized portions!

Thanks for the kind comments Marc. Yeah, Y wasn't too bad and the extra recline in Y+ is very welcome.

J service in flights leaving after 10pm is a bit abridged with a small salad instead of a big one. Still, it's plenty of food to get one full.

Quoting Reply 18):
I also enjoy your Flickr photostream. I check in frequently. You and I have had several near-misses in the last 1.5 years!

Thanks again for the great report(s) and safe travels. Best - Christian

Hey Christian, nice hearing from you again, send me a note next time you're off somewhere ; )


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