Sponsor Message:
Aviation Trip Reports Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Poor Man’s First- EK A380 First HKG-BKK-HKG (2/3)  
User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 17867 times:

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/titleImageCanvas.jpg

Welcome to my fourth A.NET trip report, a continuation of my second trip report series.

This series will cover flying between Australia and Asia- 13 days, 6 sectors, 5 airport lounges, 4 countries and 2 airlines.

There will be plenty of photos, maybe a couple of videos, but taken with an iPhone 5 so apologies in advance about the quality. I tend to enjoy A.NET reports with plenty of detail, and try to provide that here.

If you don't want detail feel free to skip from picture to picture.

The full itinerary is MEL-KUL-HKG-BKK-HKG-KUL-MEL with MH Business and EK First.
This report will cover the sectors in EK First and the planning.

You can read part 1 here:

To Asia’s Vegas With MH Business MEL-KUL-HKG (1/3) (by themit9 Dec 5 2012 in Trip Reports)

Map of the series with this report in yellow, thanks to Great Circle Mapper




Feel free to skip the reason for the trip and planning sections if you just want to get into the flying.

Reason for the trip- where else can you fly First Class at these prices?

On this trip I hoped to head to BKK. In Australia, we seem to get somewhat ripped off with airfares and there were a range of carriers offering full widebody intercontinental First Class on the HKG-BKK route. I have never flown first class before and it seemed that for less than the cost of hiring a C172 for a flight of a similar duration, I too could enjoy 'poor man's first class'- a fair proportion of all the trimmings but at an affordable price with flight time proportionate to cost. I was in. It's worth noting that the first class round trip with Emirates (about 5 hours on an A380) was close to being half the cost of a round trip with QF Business MEL-SYD (about 2 hours on a 737).

Planning- EK, CX or TG?

The real choices were EK, CX and TG for this part of the trip. Unfortunately CX was eliminated first due to a higher price which is a shame as I hope to fly them some day.

Now came a really tough call between EK and TG. EK offered an amazing amount of 'bling' including onboard showers and some perks in their onboard 'suites', but Thai offered the chance to fly in the nose of a 744 for the first time, a sample of the TG A380, better times and the famous experience of departing BKK.

With a few gold coins the difference between the two fares (in Australian dollars at least), despite not being a material man, I decided to go for the bling- to go all out and enjoy the best hard product I've ever experienced in the sky. I also get to add a new airline in Emirates to the list. I did look at doing first class one way with each airline, but this increased the price to an unjustifiable level. I then looked at doing a leg in business then first, but the difference was very minor. How often am I in this part of the world and in a position to try first? Let's just do both legs in F. The EK website was the best and most functional I used on the whole trip, and I was set with my seat allocations done- suite 3A on both legs.

Preflight Impressions (written before the trip to be fair)
These flights should be amazing and I would expect them to go up there with some of the best I've experienced. Big expectations but I believe Emirates can pull this one off. The big question- will the flights be long enough to enjoy the experience? I'm expecting to be quite busy from top of climb until top of decent with an amazing suite, shower, 2 bars, dining plus a whole A380 to explore.
Hopefully this problem is a good one, now let's go flying.

25 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 17861 times:

Departure Day
My trip started at the Nathan Road Novotel. The team there were kind enough to let me use the club lounge to fill in time before my evening departure. With plenty of time, I left at 3pm, then took the MTR to the Citygate outlets to kill some time, then took the free shuttle bus from the Novotel Citygate to the airport. I arrived at the airport's terminal 1 just after 5:10pm, with check in not expected to open until 6:15pm (3 hours before scheduled takeoff).

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2964.jpg

There was plenty to see and do- Hong Kong airport is a huge space and there's lots of aircraft that I don't get in my corner of the earth. A KLM 747 and a South African Airways A340 come to mind. It was time to see what the go was at check-in, and all the ropes and signage were setup but it was too early for any staff to be around.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2965.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2966.jpg

It was interesting some passengers with copious amounts of luggage- 5 bags for one person loaded to the brim. EK was going to make a fortune on excess baggage maybe? A person seemed to be wheeling wrapped up bales of hay (well they could have been anything)- about 10 per trip- up to the Economy counters.

I got in the first class line at 6:15pm (I was the first person for First and Business), and the staff promptly arrived. After checking that I was indeed in first class processing began.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2969.jpg

"Are you going to Dubai today?"
It was tempting to mock horror that the booking system had incorrectly stored my information and try to score a free trip to Dubai, but I refrained. Maybe next time.
The boarding pass was printed and bag tagged- the feeling at this point was it's really happening- I'm really going to fly first class for the first time.

Boarding pass

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2984.jpg

I didn't beep at security which was good, immigration a bit disorderly but I was ushered straight to a desk that was opening so this saved lots of time. Surely Hong Kong can do better than this for first class passengers though?

Thoughts on Hong Kong airport- efficient, well organised and everything is done by the book which makes for an easy travel experience. But the airport is lacking a certain character- it feels very cold and sterile in my opinion. I couldn't quite put my finger on what it was- perhaps the lack of a giant fish pond, cactus garden and indoor rainforest? Not sure. But I shook off my feelings and headed to the EK lounge. On the way, you couldn't help but think that the airport takes everyone as morons, with 'Please hold the handrail and mind your step' playing on repeat. Although it seems to be a thing Hong Kong wide with the MTR equally as cautious.

Plenty of gates

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2970.jpg

It's really happening

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2971.jpg

I arrived at the Emirates lounge- this was about 15 minutes after check-in so a good run overall

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2972.jpg

When I stepped inside, the thoughts were déjà vu- I've never been in an Emirates lounge and probably only seen an entrance to one once before, but I felt like I'd already been here. I put this down to all the other trip reporters here on A.NET.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2973.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2974.jpg

As a First passenger, it was a little disappointing that there was no separate area for First- of course, if I was in C I wouldn't care. Either way the lounge more than catered for the numbers coming in and there were plenty of empty chairs. There were also plenty of staff members coming around offering drinks top ups and clearing tables.

The buffet spread was pretty good

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2977.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2978.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2979.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2980.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2982.jpg

Starting off with some cous cous and salad

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2975.jpg

You can also order freshly made sandwiches- although Emirates sells itself short on this sign

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2976.jpg

What they deliver is a club sandwich style with potato chips (strange- never seen it served with this before)

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2983.jpg

Taking in the full Arabic experience

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2985.jpg

On this trip I think I've turned into a lounge addict- I now love sitting back and relaxing in the lounge and it's almost a shame to be dragged away to have to go flying – not quite but you get my point.

I was keen not to miss a moment of the action with the A380 product given that my time onboard would be short. Boarding was scheduled for 20:25, so at around 8:15pm I left the lounge and headed to gate 62. Here's the scene that greeted me.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2988.jpg

The ride to BKK- A6-EEC

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2989.jpg

I had done some research on the inbound flight before getting here, and found that A6-EEC was delivered just a couple of days earlier. This was to be its fourth scheduled flight. How lucky am I?
Right on time at 8:25pm as promised on the boarding pass, we were told to line up. I was in the A line, and it seemed all of first class was behind me, meanwhile there was only one person lining up for C class (zone B).

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2991.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2992.jpg

How refreshing it is to see an airport honest and accurate with boarding times, getting it right down to the minute? MEL should learn from this.

I was one of the first passengers to be sent down the jetway at 8:30pm.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2994.jpg

I thought I was entering the main deck as the jetway was sloping a long way downward, but I ended up at the upper deck. The buzz of flying a new airline…


User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 17849 times:

The Flight



Date: 4 December 2012
Flight: EK 385
Route: HKG (VHHH) – BKK (VTBS)
Aircraft: Airbus A380-861
Registration: A6-EEC

This aircraft is brand new there's no pictures

Quick facts: First flight was on 05/07/2012. This aircraft is 0.6 years old. This is only its 4th scheduled flight ever.
Scheduled / Actual Departure (gate): 9:15pm / 9:23pm UTC+8
Scheduled / Actual Arrival (date): 11:15pm / 11:14pm UTC+7
Flight Time (gate to gate) / Scheduled: 2h51m / 3h00m

-----------------------------------------------------

"Welcome onboard Mr. themit9, my colleague will escort you to your suite"

I was shown to my suite by a female flight attendant, who then asked if I was familiar with the suite. Upon replying no, what followed was the complete tour of all the impressive features. It was a great start to the flight to have a flight attendant that you could have a good, down to earth conversation with. I mentioned that it would be tough to fit everything to do with the flight into the short flight time.

Most people on here would be familiar with the Emirates suite, but let's have a quick look anyway.

Mini-bar

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2995.jpg

2003 Dom to kick off the flight with snack basket

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2996.jpg

Vanity mirror

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2997.jpg

Controller

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_2998.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3001.jpg

View from my seat

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3002.jpg

Controls

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3003.jpg

Eye shades and slippers were passed around

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3004.jpg

The controller has an interesting locking system to stop it from being used during take off

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3005.jpg

This is my second flight on an A380. The first time was with SQ which has no camera feed, so I was loving this.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3006.jpg

I believe we're on to glass 2 or 3 of the Dom

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3007.jpg

Legroom shot

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3008.jpg

Panorama- View full file

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3010.jpg

4th scheduled flight- this is how new this A380 is

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3046.jpg

Thoughts on the suite- much better than the pictures. I've never been in something so spacious on an aircraft. I liken it to the SQ J seat on the A380 with much more space in the legroom department. In pictures the suites look small, perhaps claustrophobic, but in real life they are quite large and I quite like the closing doors.

Plenty of people on here don't like the wood and faux gold (or maybe it's real?) but I think it worked quite well and the whole thing was very decadent and like nothing I've ever experienced on an aircraft.

Time for Arabic coffee and a date

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3011.jpg

9:15pm came and went, and it became clear that we weren't going to be departing on time. At around 9:21pm the upper deck jetway was removed. My view was now of yet another EK A380.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3017.jpg

Pushback started a few minutes later. The safety video was well done but has to played 3 times- Arabic, English then Cantonese.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3018.jpg

It was a long taxi down to the end of Runway 07R, then, behind a Thai 747 (wonder where that's going), we lifted off into the night sky.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3020.jpg

I've already commented on the A380 takeoff, but it hit me again just how quiet the aircraft is and how easy it is to hear conversations of the crew in the galley and on the other side of the aircraft. Also the rotation speed feels very low and it's a very stable and gentle climbout. This aircraft is a pleasure to fly in even without the looks of the 747.



After takeoff, Gina the purser came around and greeted every passenger, offering a menu in a restaurant-style book and took an order for a beverage.

What's on the menu for today? A light meal that's quite heavy.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3026.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3027.jpg

The seat controller was unlocked, so I could put it on the tray table and have a play around

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3028.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3029.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3030.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3031.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3033.jpg

The positioning of the tray table was very good and you can freely move the seat back and forth to find a spot that's comfortable for you.

I removed the headset from the pocket- standard-issue noise cancellation

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3034.jpg

Then my drink came- Baileys with mixed nuts

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3035.jpg

Putting on some music with ICE

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3037.jpg

Contents of the vanity

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3041.jpg

Writing kit

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3042.jpg

Orders were taken for the main meal, I picked the BBQ duck for the starter then the prawns Asia style. Sadly it was red light on the prawns, which were strangely popular. So I picked the chicken.

Duck with salad

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3043.jpg

The bread basket came around, and I had the usual

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3044.jpg

Crispy on the outside and moist on the inside- cooked to perfection
The duck was faultless. During the meal I kept the 2003 Dom flowing.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3045.jpg

The drinks were refilled straight from the bottle without me being asked- just like MH business back in the good old days. The Dom was surprisingly free flowing, although drinking my airfare in Dom would be too much of a challenge.

Very appropriate music for the Arabic theme I thought

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3040.jpg

Next up- chicken

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3047.jpg

Mini bar during the meal- I loved being able to help myself at any time

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3048.jpg

To finish up- the cheeseboard. I couldn't fit in the dessert or chocolates.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3049.jpg

Red wine or port was offered to go with the cheese board.

Couldn't eat another bite- what a fantastic meal

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3050.jpg

Emirates has OnAir connectivity during flights in selected airspace. Not this airspace however. But you can use your mobile like a regular phone and use WiFi. Although, at 5MB for $2.75 USD and steeply increasing from there, I think I'll keep the aircraft as the last place where once the doors close, all your problems remain on the ground until the doors open at the destination. Adding connectivity is definitely bittersweet- who doesn't want to stay connected and even get work done, but at the same time, there's something nice about just enjoying the IFE and looking at cloud formations without a care in the world. Plus some of my best ideas have come from being on a plane.

I had my eye on the countdown to BKK which was plummeting like the minutes were seconds, so I got out of the seat leaving the meal to explore. Was never asked about a shower and the lights for the lavs at the front of the aircraft were red, so I made a note to be more proactive on the return sector.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3051.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3052.jpg

Water feature at the front of the aircraft- the first class social area wasn't setup

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3053.jpg

Stairs

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3054.jpg

Y Class- looked full

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3055.jpg

Back into J class for the first time ever (you can't walk back to J without flying F)

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3056.jpg

The amazing bar at the back of the A380

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3057.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3058.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3059.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3061.jpg

Big screen TV

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3060.jpg

I caught up again with a couple from Dubai that I had met in the lounge- the whole bar recreates what it must have been like on the ocean liners.

Seating with seat belts

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3062.jpg

Time was really running out- at the bar it was nearly last drinks, so I went back to the seat to test out the bed

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3063.jpg

It was my first time lying flat and parallel to the floor except for once in Y on a UA 747 flight 12 years ago. I am very tall, almost 2 metres but the bed was long enough and wide enough. Very comfortable indeed.
The flight attendant offered to take my photo

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3067.jpg

A word on the crew- excellent. The flight attendant looking after me performed the service flawlessly, nothing was too much and she took the time to get to know passengers...we had a conversation about my iPhone for example. The F cabin was nearly full this evening, C was about half-full from what I could see and Y looked full, so the crew were kept very busy. I believe there are 4 First flight attendants, plus 2 for the shower spa. 2:7 is a pretty good ratio, but there's a lot to do when looking after F passengers, so they were probably kept a little too busy tonight and there were a couple of waits for service. I hope my return sector is with a lighter load.

Now seems like a good time for a word on ICE- you couldn't fault the huge selection of music and more (I listened to a great interview with Tim Clark about the whole Emirates operation). A couple of aspects weren't as intuitive as they could be- one wrong button press for example caused me to completely clear my 'favourites' music playlist. A message asking 'are you sure' would have been nice. The mouse control took a bit of practice but once I understood how it worked it was seamless.

Orchids

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3074.jpg

It was very sad at 10:55pm (times Bangkok from here on) to hear the co-pilot announce that descent was underway.

Preparing for landing

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3077.jpg

It's interesting to not have any overhead lockers or passenger service units- just a small compartment in the ceiling for oxygen.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3078.jpg

Slightly early, we came back to earth on 19R at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi airport, vacating on E9 and heading for the terminal building.



Passengers continuing to Dubai were asked to remain onboard with the transit being around 90 minutes. So that the aircraft could be cleaned and catered as quickly as possible passengers were asked to remain in their seats (would A.NET people do this???).

Packing up

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3081.jpg

Last look at my seat

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3082.jpg

Cabin

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3083.jpg

I thanked the crew for their amazing efforts on today's flight and proceeded into the terminal building.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3086.jpg

It was my third time in Thailand since July last year, and it felt like returning home.
I changed some money, then proceeded through the premium lane before finding my bag already waiting for me at the carousel.

Spoilt for choice between Golden Club Class and EK First

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3089.jpg

Sadly EK First really makes Golden Club Class look second rate, but that's to be expected.
I was with my ride to the hotel within 30 minutes of landing. Given that midnight was coming I decided to book somewhere cheap and close to the airport before proceeding to the city of Bangkok the following day.
Approximately $40 USD/AUD, or 1280 THB got me the Convenient Grand Hotel Suvarnabhumi. The price was their deluxe room, plus free airport transfers, plus WiFi plus breakfast.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3091.jpg

A bit rough around the edges but the perfect place to put one's head for the night

Views

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3092.jpg

Useless shower without a curtain- shower head is about 1.5 metres off the ground

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3093.jpg

The next day it was only 250 baht to transfer by taxi into the city.

This flight was a lot to take in, and onboard it was non-stop. It took around a day after the trip to digest what happened during the 3 hours, process it and go over it. The more I thought about it, the more I was impressed by the entire experience.

IMPRESSIONS OF EK 385

Check-in: Easy, friendly, efficient. Couldn't fault it.
Departure: Hong Kong needs a priority lane. Otherwise you couldn't fault it- much better than the disorganised gate system at KLIA.
Lounge: Great food, great dining, amazing staff and a restful place to relax. Couldn't fault it.
Onboard: The flight couldn't really be faulted. Brand new aircraft, suite where everything works and so well setup and operated using the latest technology. Crew outstanding.
Food and Beverages: Out of prawns but this was the only problem in the service with copious amount of food and beverages available.
Arrival: I really like BKK. Today's arrival was simple and fast.

For a first flight with EK, you can't help but get a lot of respect for the airline after a flight like this. The airline has a healthy balance sheet, and is expanding rapidly. 2 new destinations a month? It really is at the cutting edge of aviation from what I saw with the technology on-board. From the cabin staff building a great rapport and showing off the first class suite like a proud parent to the amazing ICE system, this flight promised to be one of the best I've ever taken and delivered.

Still I feel like I haven't done my job when writing a trip report or any review without finding areas for improvement. Nothing can be perfect right?

Firstly, obviously it was a shame not get my first preference in dining, but at the same time you can't expect airlines to uplift 5 choices x 14 passengers. Secondly, the crew were probably just slightly overworked with the full cabin- I'd like to see the service with a lighter load. Hopefully on the way back. This was probably exaggerated by the fact that it's such a short flight and people like me are keen to experience everything, whereas on the sector to DXB, I'd probably want a nice, slow service. Last of all, the ICE system was the best I've used, but while navigating I heard 'Welcome to ICE…' about 10 times. It was a little tricky to navigate between all the entertainment then back to the airshow and cameras. Luckily I mastered this on the following sector by finding everything under information. Also it was a shame that one button clears your favourites list- a popup asking 'Are you sure' would avoid frustration here. Despite these issues I would take ICE over any other system on the market.

When you look at them, these aren't really flaws, just observations. Yes, I managed to find a few areas for improvement but I don't blame Emirates at all for these and I don't think the really took anything away from the fact that this was an outstanding flight, one of the best I've taken and that Emirates is a great airline. Under the magnifying glass, I think EK did magnificently and I can't wait for the return sector, which, when looking at the seating plan, promises to have a lighter load. I also missed out on using the bathroom onboard, and even seeing the shower suite, so these will be the absolute priority for my next flight.

-------------------------------------------

To avoid covering old ground, from this point on in the series I'll try and keep the reports a bit lighter, covering only differences from the previous sectors.

[Edited 2012-12-10 04:16:45]

User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 17833 times:

After a few days in Bangkok, I was looking forward to the return sector, and the start of 3 flights in as many days. I was up for a lot of the night not feeling very well, possible food poisoning, but tried to put this behind me as you don't get to fly EK First very often. Someone on the street tried to sell me an airport taxi for 500 baht, taking one with the meter turned out to be 220 baht. But it was the taxi ride of great fear, with the driver rolling backwards on manual hill starts, driving in two lanes at once at 120 km/h, cutting off traffic and cutting across 3 lanes in 100 metres to take the right exit. We take simple things like road laws for granted in Australia.

Earlier in the day I checked on the seat map and the other two pax in the F cabin appeared to have cancelled



How likely would I be that I would get the whole F cabin to myself? There had to be a catch as it became apparent to me on the last sector that EK must make a killing on F for this route- people like me doing the three hour hop as almost everyone in F got off at BKK.
Relieved to be at BKK in one piece just after 12pm I headed direct to the EK First counter, where there was no line.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3175.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3176.jpg

Check in was lightening efficiency and my bag was tagged and priority tag given.
The lines for J and Y were a fraction longer

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3178.jpg

Boarding pass

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3184.jpg

The premium lane was quick and easy today and the staff very friendly and jovial. I wonder how working in the premium lane with its light workload is decided? The premium lane at BKK would have to be one of the best setups I've experienced in any airport to date, so well done BKK.

Just 15 minutes after arriving kerbside I was at the entry to the lounge

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3179.jpg

Emirates lounges are the same worldwide give or take a little I've decided. I really like the EK approach and all the work they do to creating a consistent product regardless of flight or departure airport. This was extended to why they don't want to join partnerships according to Tim Clark. Good on them.

Buffet spread

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3180.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3181.jpg

Starting with a prawn and crab meat

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3182.jpg

EK satay vs. MH- pretty proud of my plating skills. Can you tell the difference?

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3183a.jpg

Scenes of the lounge

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3185.jpg

I went to the business centre for some catch up, the computers had Windows XP taken over by some Emirates program that kept everything in lockdown, I guess much more secure than other lounges. My phone wouldn't charge in the USB port which was a minor annoyance. I had to vacate pretty quickly as another passenger finished on the computer and moved to one of the few armchairs in the room, then started snoring at full volume...the grunts and gaps for air resembled the sound made by a suckling pig ...perhaps overly comfortable armchairs in the business centre aren't the best idea.

When I got to gate E4, the aircraft was none other than A6-EEC, the same as the previous sector which meant I'd be in the same seat on the same aircraft. On the last sector it was on its 4th scheduled flight, today it made it up to flight number 11, having travelled to CDG, then back to BKK and HKG, then back to CDG again.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3186.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3187.jpg

Not quite ready for boarding, so let's go for a walk and get some snaps. The flight was late due to the favourite excuse of 'late inbound arrival of the aircraft'. Airlines love this excuse as nobody seems to wonder why the aircraft arrived late. Probably due to late arrival of the aircraft on the sector before that.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3188.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3189.jpg

Back to the gate with the 'closed gate' system. These lines aren't very first class.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3190.jpg

An airline I've never heard of on pushback

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3191.jpg

Not a fan of BKK boarding- they could learn from HKG. Announcements were few and far between, passengers were barely informed of the delay (I was really only in the loop from being in the lounge) and the whole thing just felt disorganised. In the lounge sadly other people had "FIRST" on their boarding pass killing the dream of the entire cabin to myself, but I can't say I was really surprised.
The word got around the gate lounge that they were inviting "Fur and business car" to come forward, and go onto the other side of the ropes in preparation for boarding. I joined the group. Another 5 minutes passed standing on the other side of the ropes with my fellow premium pax, before we were finally invited on.

All the food poisoning goes away when you enter the aerobridge.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3193.jpg

To the upper deck

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3194.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3195.jpg

[Edited 2012-12-10 04:19:01]

User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 17774 times:

THE FLIGHT



Date: 7 December 2012
Flight: EK 384
Route: BKK (VTBS) – HKG (VHHH)
Aircraft: Airbus A380-861
Registration: A6-EEC

This aircraft is brand new so there's no pictures

Quick facts: First flight was on 05/07/2012. This aircraft is 0.6 years old. This is only its 11th scheduled flight ever.

Scheduled / Actual Departure (gate): 1:45pm / 1:58pm UTC+7
Scheduled / Actual Arrival (date): 5:30pm / 5:35pm UTC+8
Flight Time (gate to gate) / Scheduled: 2h51m / 2h37m

---------------------------------------

I was welcomed onboard, then directed but not shown to my suite. I put this down to the BKK model where everyone boards all at once.

Sitting down, wonder how many people have sat in this seat since I was last here.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3196.jpg

View from the suite

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3197.jpg

The sticker is still there

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3215.jpg

Welcome champagne...only Moet no vintage Dom

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3198.jpg

Some excuse of 'the bar is closed' was given about the lack of Dom. My thoughts were, OK, the law means no alcohol on the ground at BKK, I'll just have some sparkling water, but then I was offer Moet, so not sure what the reasoning was there.

Menus were brought around

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3201.jpg

Menu for the previous sector was all A la Carte

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3202.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3203.jpg

Arabic coffee (date hidden)

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3206.jpg

Orders were taken, this time from the rear of the aircraft forward, so I got in early on my requested prawns for the starter and pasta for main course.

After missing out on the shower on the last sector, I tried to get in by proactively asking the flight attendant serving me if it was possible. I know others have done it on these short flights. There was lots of umms and aahhs but she said she would ask the purser.

She returned and apparently the purser had said yes, but I might need to eat quickly or miss a couple of courses. Fine by me, I can be very efficient when showering at FL390 is presented as an opportunity. She promised to send a staff member to me after takeoff to escort me to the 'spa'.

By 2:58pm the aerobridge was away and doors were closed.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3208.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3209.jpg

Being escorted on the taxi out

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3210.jpg

Not sure if this is fire fighting on the way out or what but we had a convoy of two trucks and a van

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3211.jpg



After take off

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3216.jpg

Within minutes a flight attendant came to my seat "You wanted to have a shower? Please follow me"

I was ushered into the shower on the port side of the aircraft which was, as others have said, very large, spacious and luxurious for a passenger aircraft. I was shown how it all worked ,and what to do in heavy turbulence ("hold onto this") a decompression (an oxygen mask would fall from above, then I'd imagine that you would want to hold on for dear life as the emergency descent started while getting dressed), then reminded to lock the door. And it was just me.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3217.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3218.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3219.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3220.jpg

Screen keeps you up to speed on where we are.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3222.jpg

Panorama of the shower suite- View full file

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3224.jpg

I then enjoyed the relaxing sensation of the shower spa. I had to hunch over inside (being 6 foot 7) and the shower head was too low to use, but this was fine- it's an onboard shower. I ended up using all the water in one go, being conscious of the flight time. The shower cubicle was spacious with a bench for sitting down- presumably a safety requirement in the event of turbulence. The drainage system is very clever in its design so that water doesn't run into undesirable places, while preventing passengers from putting debris and other items down the drain.

On stepping out, I noticed that the floor was heated although it rarely gets chilly on an aircraft. What a great experience.
After the shower only 15 minutes of the flight time had been used, I was impressed by my efforts. The tables hadn't even been set yet.
The purser came around and asked if I had my shower and how it was. I was obviously known as "that annoying F pax who wants a shower".

Post the shower

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3225.jpg

Putting on some music on ICE

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3238.jpg

The section on ICE I'd missed last time so you can watch airshow, enjoy the cameras and hear your music

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3226.jpg

I was on such a high that I forgot to take a picture until after bite number one of the starter.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3230.jpg

The usual from the bread basket

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3231.jpg

Well on our way

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3232.jpg

The curvature of the earth from the tail camera is interesting viewing

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3234.jpg

Panorama of the suite and aisle- View full file

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3235.jpg

With the starter and salad course complete, it was time to bring out the main. The pasta was small and simple, but very effective and cooked al dente.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3236.jpg

Views during the main

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3239.jpg

With the main out of the way, I was offered dessert which I accepted

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3240.jpg

To see what privacy is like I closed the suite doors

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3241.jpg

I'm surprised that people reject the idea of enclosed suites- apparently the majority of people don't appreciate them according to TG who went with a more open design. I believe MH also doesn't have doors on its A380 suites. I think it was very private but without feeling caved in. The upper deck of the A380 with its side bins due to the curvature of the fuselage gives airlines a bit of room to play with, and EK has done this well with plentiful storage compartments and other features.
A mirror also fills the gaps between the suite wall and fuselage for added privacy.

Luckily there is an emergency backup to escape

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3242.jpg

It was time to keep ticking off the bucket list on this short flight, and the next item was a trip to the bar.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3243.jpg

J Class

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3244.jpg

Exit

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3245.jpg

As usual there were plenty of people hanging out

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3246.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3249.jpg

Bistro Bites Menu

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3250.jpg

Making small talk

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3251.jpg

I was asked what I wanted to drink and said Baileys, this was somehow misheard as champagne- never mind, it's all good so I didn't bother to protest

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3252.jpg

Panorama of the bar that turned out pretty well- View full file

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3253.jpg

I took some photos of other passengers, then they offered to photograph me, so I decided why not.
Back at the seat, there was strangely some time to kill (this sector was shorter but there was more time...not sure where the time on the last sector was lost). Why not order the cheese selection. I emphasised the word 'small selection' but got the full trimmings. That's an inconvenience I can live with.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3256.jpg

Just 34 minutes now between us and HKG

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3258.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3259.jpg

Why not pour myself a Perrier from the mini bar?

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3261.jpg

I was asked to complete a survey- not sure why me- were they under quota for males in the under 25 age bracket or something?

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3262.jpg

Then some great news from the flight deck, traffic was busy at HKG so we'd be holding. Win.
In the holding pattern

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3265.jpg

Gentle turns for the race track flight path

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3266.jpg

The setting sun on the bed of clouds offers some great photo opportunities

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3267.jpg

A word on the crew at this point. Initial impression was not as good as the last sector…less being called by name (small, superficial but makes a real difference to the overall feeling of the flight...I've applied this lesson to my clients. Attention to detail on airlines is what ends up deciding the quality of the soft product). On the last sector I invited a flight attendant to use my first name, and on this sector a flight attendant called me by my first name automatically. Could this be due to some preference being recorded on some database somewhere?

On the last sector my glass literally never was left emptied, the bottle of Dom, water, or port came around without me even asking. It was a shame I neglected to get the flight attendant's name who was serving me on the previous sector. On this sector things were a little slower, and a little less proactive. However, this all changed when the flight attendant serving me came by and asked if I had been to the bar/lounge yet. I said I'd ticked everything off the bucket list for this short flight, then we launched into a full conversation about my other flights, how new the aircraft was (she couldn't understand how I knew that this aircraft was on its 11th scheduled flight and that it's delivery flight was on 1/12/12), the EK first experience and the ticket buying process. At this point I was called Mr. Themit9 in all encounters, and was offered an amenity kit.

The amenity kit offering turned out to be a full gift bag with the luxurious First amenity kit, sleep suit, decks of cards and the like. "Sorry it's so small, usually we have more but there's not much left from the previous flight?". I think I can manage with the pitiful offerings…

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3268.jpg

Sleep suit

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3269.jpg

Deck of cards- don't think we'll be removing these from the packaging

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3270.jpg

It's always great to have a good conversation that's down to earth with the people that serve you, she even mentioned that she had a similar passenger before that had travelled to Colombo to get the bargain flight deals with EK. (note to self, check pricing from Colombo for future flights).

Sadly the holding process came to an end, and we started to descend into IFR

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3271.jpg

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3272.jpg

The flight attendant came by again to ensure the suite was secured for landing. After staring at the indicator for a few seconds I said "Is it green?" and the reply was "All good, wow you really know your stuff". From a flight attendant to me there is no higher praise.

On the approach path for 07L

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3273.jpg

The islands surrounding HKG are quite beautiful

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3274.jpg

One of the more scenic shots

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3276.jpg

On landing the track playing on ICE was George Michael with "Flawless" which I think summed up the last two sectors on EK.

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3278.jpg

On the ground

http://mdtravelblog.com/airreportpics/asianov/part2df453/IMG_3280.jpg



On exit the crew were all saying "goodbye sir" and so on, but to me all three crew said "Goodbye Mr. Themit9". I must now be known around the crew as "that annoying F pax who wanted a shower and is a obsessed with aviation". Whenever the crew go above and beyond the call of duty for aviation enthusiasts they get a real tick of approval in my book.

Arrival in HKG was the same as what is now normal to me. Due to some technical problem a loud speaker announcement advised that bags wouldn't be arriving for some time. The finally came at around 6:10pm, and I transferred to the bus service to the Novotel Citygate to await my flight to KUL set for the following day.

Having been up for most of the night, by the time I got to the hotel, it was lights out for me despite only being 8pm…the flight high wore off pretty quickly it seems.

IMPRESSIONS OF EK 384
Check-in: No line, easy, efficient and faultless.
Departure: The BKK priority lane is one of the better offerings at the airports I've been to. Gate system disorganised unfortunately.
Lounge: EK does well with consistency and this was on display here. Couldn't fault it.
Onboard: Hard product was first class all the way. Soft product took a little bit of time to warm up. Despite not being as good as EK 385, this crew still did an excellent job.
Food and Beverages: I can't think of a single fault
Arrival: HKG you need a premium lane. Delay in bags. Otherwise HKG is a very efficient airport that you can get through without much fuss.

I really enjoyed my time on EK- what a great introduction to a new airline- I can't think of an airline that's enjoyed a better introduction. Flying First for the first time probably helps as well. Emirates is strongly on the radar (if it wasn't already) and I hope to fly them again soon.

Would I take this flight again? At the price paid for the return offering, I'd probably take these flights just for the sake of it if I was in the area again, which is highly likely.

Thanks for reading

If you've made it to here, thanks for reading. Please leave a comment- let me know what you liked, what you didn't like and you're thoughts on my thoughts. The final part of the series will be posted in the coming days.

Video Reports

You've read the report (or at least seen the pictures), now watch the video report.







Read more about the trip

My new travel blog is slowly coming together, and there are a few articles about the non-aviation aspects of the trip. I am working as hard as I can to clear the backlog on travel writing from the trip.

http://mdtravelblog.com/macau-trip-2012-from-a-net

Previous reports

To Asia’s Vegas With MH Business MEL-KUL-HKG (1/3) (by themit9 Dec 5 2012 in Trip Reports)
SQ Vs MH | MEL – SIN – BKKKUL – MEL In C Part 2 (by themit9 Apr 13 2012 in Trip Reports)
SQ Vs MH | MEL – SIN – BKKKUL – MEL In C Part 1 (by themit9 Apr 8 2012 in Trip Reports)


User currently offlinedirectorguy From Egypt, joined Jul 2008, 1683 posts, RR: 11
Reply 5, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 17320 times:

Hey Mitchell,
Thanks for sharing your report, was a wonderful read! Great idea to keep a blog as well.
Regrds,
DG


User currently offlinethegivenone From Austria, joined Jan 2008, 192 posts, RR: 2
Reply 6, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 16698 times:

Another fantastic report sir! I have been eyeing this sector for a long time for truly great offers and probably my only chance at a full-fare F Class ticket for the near future. I was pleased to read a report on the 2.5 hour experience as I now know what to expect. I will face the same difficulty of picking between EK and TG (especially as the latter would give me Star miles).

One question: were you not entitled to a complementary limo to the airport at BKK as a FC passenger?

I'm glad you had such an enjoyable trip! Thanks again for all the detail.


User currently offlineSInGAPORE_AIR From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2000, 13742 posts, RR: 19
Reply 7, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 16572 times:

Great report and happy you had a pleasant trip. Looking forward to trying this particular route in F one day soon for myself !


Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
User currently offlineIrishAyes From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 2188 posts, RR: 15
Reply 8, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 16547 times:

wowowowow. Simply pure elegance. thanks for sharing. i love the continuous flowing of DOM. Totally classy  

EK serves more on short sector flights in F (simply referring to food contents for a meal) than UA does in C on a long-haul flight.

Beautifully presented. Thanks for the hard work!



next flights: jfk-icn, icn-hkg-bkk-cdg, cdg-phl-msp
User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 16240 times:

Quoting directorguy (Reply 5):
Hey Mitchell,
Thanks for sharing your report, was a wonderful read! Great idea to keep a blog as well.
Regrds,
DG

Thanks for reading directorguy, and for your feedback.

Quoting thegivenone (Reply 6):
Another fantastic report sir!

Hi thegivenone, thanks for the kind words.

Quoting thegivenone (Reply 6):

I have been eyeing this sector for a long time for truly great offers and probably my only chance at a full-fare F Class ticket for the near future. I was pleased to read a report on the 2.5 hour experience as I now know what to expect. I will face the same difficulty of picking between EK and TG (especially as the latter would give me Star miles).

I found that the prices don't move a great deal for F and J on this route. The experience is definitely worth it, although going in I wasn't sure what there would be time to do within the flight time. I think I managed to do just about everything so if you want a snapshot, do it. As for TG vs EK I'd really like to fly TG again soon, it would be interesting to compare carriers on this route in F.

Quoting thegivenone (Reply 6):

One question: were you not entitled to a complementary limo to the airport at BKK as a FC passenger?

No, which is a shame. If I was coming to or from DXB I would be able to but they don't offer it for the short sector. See the availability here: http://www.emirates.com/english/plan...auffeur_drive/where_available.aspx

This is fair enough as the tickets were quite cheap, although if you do the Tasman crossing you get it flying F but not J. They should offer it for an additional but subsidised cost if flying F.

Quoting SInGAPORE_AIR (Reply 7):
Great report and happy you had a pleasant trip. Looking forward to trying this particular route in F one day soon for myself !

Thanks Singapore Air- just do it and you won't be disappointed.

Quoting IrishAyes (Reply 8):
wowowowow. Simply pure elegance. thanks for sharing. i love the continuous flowing of DOM. Totally classy

Definitely a cut above J, they won me over.

Quoting IrishAyes (Reply 8):

EK serves more on short sector flights in F (simply referring to food contents for a meal) than UA does in C on a long-haul flight.

One of the big things about EK is consistency, so they seem to want a similar catering experience on a short haul service as well as long haul. For a 'light meal' I think they did well.

Quoting IrishAyes (Reply 8):

Beautifully presented. Thanks for the hard work!

Thanks IrishAyes.


User currently offlinegabrielchew From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 3268 posts, RR: 12
Reply 10, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 14900 times:

Nice continuation report! I really need to get myself on this EK flight the next time I'm in HK!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
I didn't beep at security which was good, immigration a bit disorderly but I was ushered straight to a desk that was opening so this saved lots of time. Surely Hong Kong can do better than this for first class passengers though?

I know, I was surprised tht there was no special CX F screening in HKG. Clearly it's not something that HKG offers.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):

I'm surprised that people reject the idea of enclosed suites- apparently the majority of people don't appreciate them according to TG who went with a more open design.

I loved the privacy on my TG F 77W flight...what I didn't like was that the doors were such a pain to move...constantly getting stuck. EK clearly have better doors.



http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights:MAN-LHR-ARN-OSL-TOS-LYR-OSL-CPH-LHR,LCY-ARN-AMS-LGW-DXB-BKK-HKG-TPE-
User currently offlinecanadiantree From France, joined Jun 2006, 129 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 14700 times:

Absolutely fantastic report, my favorite A380 F report, probably because of the poor man title haha, would you be willing to tell us how much the airfare was at +/- $100? I'm just really curious at how much such a flight would cost, I'm planning my honeymoon for next fall  

the quality of service looked great for such a short F flight, definitely mouth watering!

All the best,

William


User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 14021 times:

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 10):
Nice continuation report! I really need to get myself on this EK flight the next time I'm in HK!

Thanks Gabrielchew, yes you do- it's a must-do experience in my books for anyone in to aviation that goes to HKG or BKK.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 10):
I know, I was surprised tht there was no special CX F screening in HKG. Clearly it's not something that HKG offers.

Not sure why, it would cost them very little to implement and they could earn revenue by doing it? It's one of those things you have to have these days.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 10):
I loved the privacy on my TG F 77W flight...what I didn't like was that the doors were such a pain to move...constantly getting stuck. EK clearly have better doors.

The EK suites have lots that could go wrong as everything from the window blinds to the minibar is powered by electric motors. But it all seems to hold up quite well- although it helps to have a brand new aircraft. The doors opened and closed with ease thanks to the wireless controller.

Quoting canadiantree (Reply 11):
Absolutely fantastic report, my favorite A380 F report, probably because of the poor man title haha, would you be willing to tell us how much the airfare was at +/- $100? I'm just really curious at how much such a flight would cost, I'm planning my honeymoon for next fall

Hi Canadiantree,

Thanks for your very kind words. I booked through the EK website where they guarantee the best airfare. I purchased the round trip for around 8000 HKD- so just short of $1,000 AUD/USD- something I think is a real bargain for the full F experience. Clearly others did as well given the strong loads. One way is a bit more than half that.

Regards,

themit9


User currently offlinetriple7man From Thailand, joined May 2005, 743 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 13980 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Thoughts on Hong Kong airport- efficient, well organised and everything is done by the book which makes for an easy travel experience. But the airport is lacking a certain character- it feels very cold and sterile in my opinion

HKG is well organized and efficient, like you said. But it is rather sterile. I personally find BKK the same, although it is much more chaotic than HKG.

Quoting themit9 (Reply 3):
Someone on the street tried to sell me an airport taxi for 500 baht, taking one with the meter turned out to be 220 baht.

If a taxi driver ever asks for a specified amount, just say "meter meter." Do not ride in a taxi that does not use their meter. They often try to rip off farangs (foreigners) this way. I learned that the first time I came here.

Quoting themit9 (Reply 3):
Back to the gate with the 'closed gate' system. These lines aren't very first class.

Unfortunately the gates at BKK are closed so you might have to wait, although they have some gates made to accomodate A380's, and separate lines for first/business class.

Quoting themit9 (Reply 3):
Not a fan of BKK boarding- they could learn from HKG

This is Thailand. It is the opposite of Japan. The people here are very friendly, but it is very disorganized and chaotic. For some reason, in spite of that, Thailand ranks high on places to visit lists. It is cheap, and if you want to get away from the cold, come here. Summer never begins because it never ends.

Thank you for posting. I have flown EK A380's on this same route, only the opposite (BKK-HKG-BKK) and not on the same trip. I was only in economy class, but the inflight service was still wonderful. I particularly like their AVOD and the tv cameras, especially the one in the tail. I was treated to a tour of the upper deck and cockpit when we landed in HKG. In my opinion, EK and CX are the best.



Have you kissed a 777 today?
User currently offlineflightsimboy From Canada, joined Sep 2005, 1268 posts, RR: 4
Reply 14, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 13175 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Hello Mitchell!

Absolutely enjoyed reading this trip report on EK's A380 in F!! While Malaysian is in a class of their own as in your previous report perhaps you should do a short haul with MH in their F for comparision purposes lol...sorry you know how much I love MH!!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Reason for the trip- where else can you fly First Class at these prices?

On this trip I hoped to head to BKK. In Australia, we seem to get somewhat ripped off with airfares and there were a range of carriers offering full widebody intercontinental First Class on the HKG-BKK route. I have never flown first class before and it seemed that for less than the cost of hiring a C172 for a flight of a similar duration, I too could enjoy 'poor man's first class'- a fair proportion of all the trimmings but at an affordable price with flight time proportionate to cost. I was in.
Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Now came a really tough call between EK and TG. EK offered an amazing amount of 'bling' including onboard showers and some perks in their onboard 'suites', but Thai offered the chance to fly in the nose of a 744 for the first time, a sample of the TG A380, better times and the famous experience of departing BKK.

That explains the "Poor Man's First" lol...I still would have gone with TG's F as the 744s won't be around for too long, and flying F on EK's A380 is definitely not in the nose, besides they will be here for a long time to come lol

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
With a few gold coins the difference between the two fares (in Australian dollars at least), despite not being a material man, I decided to go for the bling- to go all out and enjoy the best hard product I've ever experienced in the sky. I also get to add a new airline in Emirates to the list. I did look at doing first class one way with each airline, but this increased the price to an unjustifiable level. I then looked at doing a leg in business then first, but the difference was very minor. How often am I in this part of the world and in a position to try first? Let's just do both legs in F. The EK website was the best and most functional I used on the whole trip, and I was set with my seat allocations done- suite 3A on both legs.

Glad you were able to decide to fly F both ways.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
It was interesting some passengers with copious amounts of luggage- 5 bags for one person loaded to the brim. EK was going to make a fortune on excess baggage maybe? A person seemed to be wheeling wrapped up bales of hay (well they could have been anything)- about 10 per trip- up to the Economy counters.

Perhaps the bales of hay were for the ground check in staff when they fall backwards from checkin in those 5 bags per preson lol...Hong Kong is after all a shoppers paradise!!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
"Are you going to Dubai today?"
It was tempting to mock horror that the booking system had incorrectly stored my information and try to score a free trip to Dubai, but I refrained. Maybe next time.

Would have been amusing had you to attempt it lol

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
The boarding pass was printed and bag tagged- the feeling at this point was it's really happening- I'm really going to fly first class for the first time.

Did you have to pinch yourself in disbelief!!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Thoughts on Hong Kong airport- efficient, well organised and everything is done by the book which makes for an easy travel experience. But the airport is lacking a certain character- it feels very cold and sterile in my opinion

You have to get to Dubai's T3 to see how cold and sterile that Terminal feels...yes much bigger and spacious then T1 Shekih Rashid terminal, but lacks the warmth of T1

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
On the way, you couldn't help but think that the airport takes everyone as morons, with 'Please hold the handrail and mind your step' playing on repeat. Although it seems to be a thing Hong Kong wide with the MTR equally as cautious.

Perhaps people have not been taking these safety precautions too seriously, hence the repeated announcements. It's pretty standard at airports here as well as subway and train stations.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
As a First passenger, it was a little disappointing that there was no separate area for First- of course, if I was in C I wouldn't care.

The beginnings of a F Class snob lol

Quoting themit9 (Reply 2):
Most people on here would be familiar with the Emirates suite, but let's have a quick look anyway.

I am quite glad you took us on a tour again!!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Very appropriate music for the Arabic theme I thought

Great choice of song given the surroundings and the airline!!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Mini bar during the meal- I loved being able to help myself at any time

Just curious. When items are depleted, do they come to check or does one need to ring for the FA to replenish the items.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
To finish up- the cheeseboard. I couldn't fit in the dessert or chocolates.

Should have just taken it for the photos, but wastage is not good lol

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Y Class- looked full

That is the closest I will ever get sitting in the nose section of an aircraft possible only on the A380s.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
the whole bar recreates what it must have been like on the ocean liners.

Yes that is quite right. It does have that ambience and you really put your finger on it by describing it as such!!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
A word on the crew- excellent. The flight attendant looking after me performed the service flawlessly, nothing was too much and she took the time to get to know passengers...we had a conversation about my iPhone for example. The F cabin was nearly full this evening, C was about half-full from what I could see and Y looked full, so the crew were kept very busy.
Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Onboard: The flight couldn't really be faulted. Brand new aircraft, suite where everything works and so well setup and operated using the latest technology. Crew outstanding

Glad you got a great crew....EK is known to be a miss and hit...though in general their A380 crews are stellar, compared to the rest of the main fleet.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
For a first flight with EK, you can't help but get a lot of respect for the airline after a flight like this. The airline has a healthy balance sheet, and is expanding rapidly. 2 new destinations a month? It really is at the cutting edge of aviation from what I saw with the technology on-board. From the cabin staff building a great rapport and showing off the first class suite like a proud parent to the amazing ICE system, this flight promised to be one of the best I've ever taken and delivered.

And what a way to experience EK for the first time right up front!!

Quoting themit9 (Reply 3):
Starting with a prawn and crab meat

Hmmm what a great choice...

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
On the last sector it was on its 4th scheduled flight, today it made it up to flight number 11, having travelled to CDG, then back to BKK and HKG, then back to CDG again.
Quoting themit9 (Reply 3):
The flight was late due to the favourite excuse of 'late inbound arrival of the aircraft'. Airlines love this excuse as nobody seems to wonder why the aircraft arrived late. Probably due to late arrival of the aircraft on the sector before that.

The flight from CDG arrives around that midnight bank of arrivals, and then leaves for BKK....You should check flightradar24 for the midnight arrival times to see how many aircraft especially A380s are circling in the vicinity!!

Quoting themit9 (Reply 4):
Sitting down, wonder how many people have sat in this seat since I was last here.

That would be 7 (11 - 4) correct?

Quoting themit9 (Reply 4):
I was shown how it all worked ,and what to do in heavy turbulence ("hold onto this") a decompression (an oxygen mask would fall from above, then I'd imagine that you would want to hold on for dear life as the emergency descent started while getting dressed), then reminded to lock the door. And it was just me.

OMG that was hilarious..but so scary if it ever happened!! Don't forget the FA outside the door trying to get your attention.

Quoting themit9 (Reply 4):
I then enjoyed the relaxing sensation of the shower spa. I had to hunch over inside (being 6 foot 7) and the shower head was too low to use, but this was fine- it's an onboard shower. I ended up using all the water in one go, being conscious of the flight time. The shower cubicle was spacious with a bench for sitting down- presumably a safety requirement in the event of turbulence. The drainage system is very clever in its design so that water doesn't run into undesirable places, while preventing passengers from putting debris and other items down the drain.

On stepping out, I noticed that the floor was heated although it rarely gets chilly on an aircraft. What a great experience.
After the shower only 15 minutes of the flight time had been used, I was impressed by my efforts. The tables hadn't even been set yet.
The purser came around and asked if I had my shower and how it was. I was obviously known as "that annoying F pax who wants a shower".

That must have been one a truly one of a kind experience!! Imaging showering on an aircraft at 39,000ft!!! Their F shower ads are also very nicely done!!

Quoting themit9 (Reply 4):
I was asked what I wanted to drink and said Baileys, this was somehow misheard as champagne- never mind, it's all good so I didn't bother to protest

You should have protested you were after all an F class passenger lol

Quoting themit9 (Reply 4):
). Why not order the cheese selection. I emphasised the word 'small selection' but got the full trimmings. That's an inconvenience I can live with.

Ah such an inconvenience....the joys of flying F

Thanks so much sharing!!


User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 15
Reply 15, posted (1 year 9 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 12395 times:

Hello

Nice contiuation of your report! Glad you managad to fly EK F
I had my first F flight back in 2009 (AF CDG-IAD) and really enjoyed it as well.
EK looks great as usual

Greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (1 year 9 months 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 11328 times:

Quoting triple7man (Reply 13):

If a taxi driver ever asks for a specified amount, just say "meter meter." Do not ride in a taxi that does not use their meter. They often try to rip off farangs (foreigners) this way. I learned that the first time I came here.

Hi triple7man, thank you very much for reading. Great to hear from someone in Thailand. Great advice with the meter...after two very cheap taxi trips with it on I will be doing that from now on.

Quoting triple7man (Reply 13):

Unfortunately the gates at BKK are closed so you might have to wait, although they have some gates made to accomodate A380's, and separate lines for first/business class.

I believe E4 is designed for A380s- or maybe not but EK always uses this gate at BKK.

Quoting triple7man (Reply 13):
Thank you for posting. I have flown EK A380's on this same route, only the opposite (BKK-HKG-BKK) and not on the same trip. I was only in economy class, but the inflight service was still wonderful. I particularly like their AVOD and the tv cameras, especially the one in the tail. I was treated to a tour of the upper deck and cockpit when we landed in HKG. In my opinion, EK and CX are the best.

I would really love to try TG on this route one day, but at the same time it's going to be hard to pull myself away from EK now.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):
Hello Mitchell!

Absolutely enjoyed reading this trip report on EK's A380 in F!! While Malaysian is in a class of their own as in your previous report perhaps you should do a short haul with MH in their F for comparision purposes lol...sorry you know how much I love MH!!

Thanks again for reading flightsimboy. I would love to try MH F but I believe it's easier said than done- you can only do it on the 747 or A380 now, and I believe the only routes are SYD, LHR and maybe one or two more. All long haul and not a great choice of destinations...(not that I wouldn't want to go to LHR).

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

That explains the "Poor Man's First" lol...I still would have gone with TG's F as the 744s won't be around for too long, and flying F on EK's A380 is definitely not in the nose, besides they will be here for a long time to come lol

Good point- maybe one day I'll be able to fly F in a 748. Or I have a feeling that CX may have their F for a little while longer which might be worth a shot when I'm in the area.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

Glad you were able to decide to fly F both ways.

I think it would have been hard to do it one way- one of the flights would seen as beng very second rate and there's just not enough time to experience everything on just one flight of less than 3 hours.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

Did you have to pinch yourself in disbelief!!

Just about...it shouldn't be a surprise as I booked it but the buzz was hard to describe.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

The beginnings of a F Class snob lol

EK what have you done to me? Now looking at F more seriously than ever before...

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

I am quite glad you took us on a tour again!!

I don't think I'd have been able to resist...

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

Just curious. When items are depleted, do they come to check or does one need to ring for the FA to replenish the items.

Not on these flights, but I'm told on longer flights they do. I'd imagine more Diet Coke, Perrier and Toblerone would only be a ping of the call button away...

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

Glad you got a great crew....EK is known to be a miss and hit...though in general their A380 crews are stellar, compared to the rest of the main fleet.

I know this has been a past issue but I think they've ironed out the kinks. Or maybe that's just in J and F? Either way these crew were right up there.

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

That would be 7 (11 - 4) correct?

If the aircraft had a full load on all flights/people were in that seat then yes, but I'm not so sure it would have been occupied on all flights. Either way a very elite group of people!

Quoting flightsimboy (Reply 14):

That must have been one a truly one of a kind experience!! Imaging showering on an aircraft at 39,000ft!!! Their F shower ads are also very nicely done!!

Just about the only ad I don't skip on YouTube - especially now when it's like reliving it all over again. The shower is an amazing experience and I can't wait to do it again!

Thanks again flightsimboy for reading.

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 15):
Hello

Nice contiuation of your report! Glad you managad to fly EK F
I had my first F flight back in 2009 (AF CDG-IAD) and really enjoyed it as well.
EK looks great as usual

Greetings
Marc

Thanks for reading Marc, hope to hear from you when part 3 comes out!


User currently offlineabrelosojos From Venezuela, joined May 2005, 5090 posts, RR: 55
Reply 17, posted (1 year 9 months 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 11003 times:

Thanks a lot for the wonderfully documented report. Isn't F just great? Every time I fly F (not that often), I have a hard time going back to J. I am still super fortunate so can't complain.

EK seems good - though, I still think there is a little polish here and there missing. And yes, I do have super high standards for F. The shower experience though is a must and I am glad you got to do it.

Some other observation:

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
I didn't beep at security which was good, immigration a bit disorderly but I was ushered straight to a desk that was opening so this saved lots of time. Surely Hong Kong can do better than this for first class passengers though?

= This is one of my least favourite part of HKG. I absolutely love HK and the airport, but have been in FCL on CX and had to wait 20 minutes in chaotic lines to clear - taking away from the F experience.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
On the way, you couldn't help but think that the airport takes everyone as morons, with 'Please hold the handrail and mind your step' playing on repeat. Although it seems to be a thing Hong Kong wide with the MTR equally as cautious.

= It is a British legacy. Sort of London.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
As a First passenger, it was a little disappointing that there was no separate area for First- of course, if I was in C I wouldn't care.

= Cheap out. Especially because HKG gets a ton of F service.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
I've already commented on the A380 takeoff, but it hit me again just how quiet the aircraft is and how easy it is to hear conversations of the crew in the galley and on the other side of the aircraft.

= Or, the premium EK crew who can't stop gossiping in the F galley. This has been one of my primary issues with them -- have found the same on GF.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Water feature at the front of the aircraft- the first class social area wasn't setup

=  . It is these small things that annoy me about EK.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Not a fan of BKK boarding- they could learn from HKG. Announcements were few and far between, passengers were barely informed of the delay (I was really only in the loop from being in the lounge) and the whole thing just felt disorganised. In the lounge sadly other people had "FIRST" on their boarding pass killing the dream of the entire cabin to myself, but I can't say I was really surprised.
The word got around the gate lounge that they were inviting "Fur and business car" to come forward, and go onto the other side of the ropes in preparation for boarding. I joined the group. Another 5 minutes passed standing on the other side of the ropes with my fellow premium pax, before we were finally invited on.

= Aaah ... Bangkok  .

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
After missing out on the shower on the last sector, I tried to get in by proactively asking the flight attendant serving me if it was possible. I know others have done it on these short flights. There was lots of umms and aahhs but she said she would ask the purser.

She returned and apparently the purser had said yes, but I might need to eat quickly or miss a couple of courses. Fine by me, I can be very efficient when showering at FL390 is presented as an opportunity. She promised to send a staff member to me after takeoff to escort me to the 'spa'

= Again, you paid for it ... it is not that short of a sector. A crew in F should never make you feel like you were imposing/being a favor done.

Thanks again for writing this up. The food looks absolutely great on EK, and ICE is legendary.

Saludos,
A.



Live, and let live.
User currently offlinevhtje From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2009, 373 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (1 year 9 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 10635 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Super report! Completely consistent with my experience with EK - that is, inconsistent.

I have had some super flights with EK, and some really awful ones as well. The quality of the service in-flight really depends on the quality of the crew on board. In a premium cabin, this should not be the case. Why does service from the crew vary so much? Is EK's training regime really that uneven?

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 17):
A crew in F should never make you feel like you were imposing/being a favour done.

+1.

For me though, I don't like the faux wood and gold trim, I find it extremely tasteless. A long, long way from the understated and classy ambience of Swiss or BA first.

It is, however, very Dubai.


User currently offlineCXB77L From Australia, joined Feb 2009, 2613 posts, RR: 5
Reply 19, posted (1 year 9 months 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 10038 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
CHAT OPERATOR

Hi, thanks for sharing part 2 of your trip report.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
where else can you fly First Class at these prices?

If you don't mind me asking, how much was your ticket? I've never experienced any class other than Y and would love to experience the premium cabin, even if it is on short haul.

Quoting themit9 (Reply 1):
I had done some research on the inbound flight before getting here, and found that A6-EEC was delivered just a couple of days earlier. This was to be its fourth scheduled flight. How lucky am I?

Very. I love flying on brand new aircraft. There's just something about a brand new aircraft that makes the experience even more special ... at least, to me.

Quoting themit9 (Reply 4):
I'm surprised that people reject the idea of enclosed suites- apparently the majority of people don't appreciate them according to TG who went with a more open design.

Likewise. If I fly in a premium cabin, what I treasure most is privacy, and that's what fully enclosed suites offer. I'm also a fan of the faux wood and gold trim.



Boeing 777 fanboy
User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (1 year 9 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 9587 times:

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 17):
Thanks a lot for the wonderfully documented report. Isn't F just great? Every time I fly F (not that often), I have a hard time going back to J. I am still super fortunate so can't complain.

HI abrelosojos, thanks for your positive feedback. My taste of F was excellent, and it really raises the bar. In J it's hard to justify F- an extra course and a wider seat, but once F is experience you really see the difference. I'm already looking at how I can fly F on my next trip (at least on some sectors) so EK has corrupted me...

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 17):
EK seems good - though, I still think there is a little polish here and there missing. And yes, I do have super high standards for F. The shower experience though is a must and I am glad you got to do it.

The shower is obviously a big product difference between EK and the other airlines- it was one of the big factors that got me on that A380 which they'd love to hear. As for the polish missing, that comes down to personal taste. and past F experiences Give me a few more flights in F and I'll get back to you on how EK compares! I can imagine other carriers might be a bit more consistent in delivery though.

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 17):
= This is one of my least favourite part of HKG. I absolutely love HK and the airport, but have been in FCL on CX and had to wait 20 minutes in chaotic lines to clear - taking away from the F experience.

It takes away from the airport, but I can't say I really like HKG myself. Yes the processes are good but the overall feel is not like the buzz of SIN, KUL and so on. When flying F you don't really want to see lines...after all you paid for it.

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 17):
= Or, the premium EK crew who can't stop gossiping in the F galley. This has been one of my primary issues with them -- have found the same on GF.

To be fair to them this was only during takeoff and landing where I think it's OK to chat (although you'd have to be careful not to talk about sensitive topics as every word can be heard). Would be different in the middle of the night.

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 17):
= . It is these small things that annoy me about EK.

I just assumed that the sector was too short to justify- no it's not that short but would be the shortest sector of widebody F they operate? Although I have seen this setup in other reports so it's either cost cutting or inconsistency.

Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 17):
= Again, you paid for it ... it is not that short of a sector. A crew in F should never make you feel like you were imposing/being a favor done.

Good point, timewise I was fine as I knew there wan't really much time to be in the shower- in, use all water then straight out. They hadn't even started setting the tables by then.

Thanks again for your interesting thoughts and comments abrelosojos.

Quoting vhtje (Reply 18):
Super report! Completely consistent with my experience with EK - that is, inconsistent.

Thanks vhtje.

Quoting vhtje (Reply 18):
I have had some super flights with EK, and some really awful ones as well. The quality of the service in-flight really depends on the quality of the crew on board. In a premium cabin, this should not be the case. Why does service from the crew vary so much? Is EK's training regime really that uneven?

I wonder on other carriers how crews can be all good, then all average. Is it the purser that influences them to work harder or what? Do they all travel with the same purser mostly?

Quoting vhtje (Reply 18):
For me though, I don't like the faux wood and gold trim, I find it extremely tasteless. A long, long way from the understated and classy ambience of Swiss or BA first.

I think in pictures it looks worse, but in real life it's a little more muted.
Each to their own- you're probably one of those people who doesn't like the faux wood galley floors? BA First and Swiss are still really nice, but in a different way.

Quoting CXB77L (Reply 19):
Hi, thanks for sharing part 2 of your trip report.

Thanks for reading CXB77L.

Quoting CXB77L (Reply 19):
If you don't mind me asking, how much was your ticket? I've never experienced any class other than Y and would love to experience the premium cabin, even if it is on short haul.

It was purchased through the EK website, and the prices don't really change much for F. The return journey was just short of $1,000 AUD (about 8,000 HKD). Much less if you fly J, or even mix it up so you do Y on the outbound and F on the inbound, but I would suggest doing both sectors in F if you can (give yourself time for the whole experience). I don't think there is anywhere where you can get F at that price for that duration and at that standard. In my books it's one of those things that every aviation fan should do in their lifetime.

Quoting CXB77L (Reply 19):
Very. I love flying on brand new aircraft. There's just something about a brand new aircraft that makes the experience even more special ... at least, to me.

I'd have to agree.

Quoting CXB77L (Reply 19):
Likewise. If I fly in a premium cabin, what I treasure most is privacy, and that's what fully enclosed suites offer. I'm also a fan of the faux wood and gold trim.

Definitely not a feeling of being caved in- especially for anyone used to travelling Y.

Thanks for commenting CXB77L.


User currently offlineadamspotter From Netherlands, joined Feb 2011, 1161 posts, RR: 3
Reply 21, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 8416 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Great continuation to your series here, really enjoyed it!
EK F continues to impress and looks almost flawless! That suite looks amazing.
Service looks to be outstanding and the food delicious  

cheers,

Brendan


User currently offlineEK773 From Malta, joined Jul 2004, 235 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 8402 times:

Quoting themit9 (Reply 20):
Quoting abrelosojos (Reply 17):
= . It is these small things that annoy me about EK.

I just assumed that the sector was too short to justify- no it's not that short but would be the shortest sector of widebody F they operate? Although I have seen this setup in other reports so it's either cost cutting or inconsistency.

DXB-JED, BKK-HKG, SYD/MEL-AKL v.v the first class social area is not displayed as the flying time is between 2-3hours. The onboard lounge at the aft of the upper deck is open on all sectors.


User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 7915 times:

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 21):
Great continuation to your series here, really enjoyed it!

Thanks for reading Brendan and for following the whole series. Really appreciate it.

Quoting EK773 (Reply 22):
DXB-JED, BKK-HKG, SYD/MEL-AKL v.v the first class social area is not displayed as the flying time is between 2-3hours. The onboard lounge at the aft of the upper deck is open on all sectors.

Thanks for clearing this up EK773 and for reading.


User currently offlinePlaneHunter From Germany, joined Mar 2006, 6807 posts, RR: 77
Reply 24, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 7819 times:

Hi themit9,

another great report with good pictures! EK's F Class on the A380 is truly impressive. I once considered taking this flight, too, but then chose a different routing.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
I now love sitting back and relaxing in the lounge and it's almost a shame to be dragged away to have to go flying – not quite but you get my point.

No, I don't.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):

I had done some research on the inbound flight before getting here, and found that A6-EEC was delivered just a couple of days earlier. This was to be its fourth scheduled flight. How lucky am I?

You were indeed lucky to get the newest bird. Nothing beats flying on a brand new plane. I managed to be on board LH A380 D-AIMB on its first passenger flight, was a great experience.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
This is my second flight on an A380. The first time was with SQ which has no camera feed, so I was loving this.

You only get the real A380 experience with tail camera views - shame on SQ for not offering that great feature.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
I believe we're on to glass 2 or 3 of the Dom

They can go down quickly...

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Plenty of people on here don't like the wood and faux gold (or maybe it's real?) but I think it worked quite well and the whole thing was very decadent and like nothing I've ever experienced on an aircraft.

I can only agree, I started to like it after flying in EK's J Class for the first time.

No A380, But Still Great: ICN-DXB, EK 77W J Class (by PlaneHunter Nov 21 2012 in Trip Reports)

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
I've already commented on the A380 takeoff, but it hit me again just how quiet the aircraft is and how easy it is to hear conversations of the crew in the galley and on the other side of the aircraft.

...and other sounds. That's why I'm not a fan of the low cabin noise level.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
A word on the crew- excellent. The flight attendant looking after me performed the service flawlessly, nothing was too much and she took the time to get to know passengers...

Good to hear!

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
When I got to gate E4, the aircraft was none other than A6-EEC, the same as the previous sector which meant I'd be in the same seat on the same aircraft.

That's certainly a bit disappointing considering that almost 30 frames were active at this point of time.

Quoting themit9 (Thread starter):
Welcome champagne...only Moet no vintage Dom

Which is not bad either IMO!


PH



Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
User currently offlinethemit9 From Australia, joined Apr 2012, 99 posts, RR: 0
Reply 25, posted (1 year 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 7720 times:

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 24):
another great report with good pictures! EK's F Class on the A380 is truly impressive. I once considered taking this flight, too, but then chose a different routing.

Thanks PlaneHunter. I hope you get to take this flight some time- unless you can go F on a longer flight with the A380...

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 24):
No, I don't.

I used to have this point of view, but something changed on this trip and now I'm a big lounge fan. Maybe it was the MH Lounge at MEL and having it to myself?

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 24):
You were indeed lucky to get the newest bird. Nothing beats flying on a brand new plane. I managed to be on board LH A380 D-AIMB on its first passenger flight, was a great experience.

Very much so, although there wasn't a noticeable 'new plane smell'. Apart from the sticker and reading online it would be hard to tell. Everything was working, fresh and clean but that's to be expected...

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 24):
They can go down quickly...

Especially when they top up without asking and before the glass is empty...

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 24):
I can only agree, I started to like it after flying in EK's J Class for the first time.

The same thing in your report- the photos don't do it justice but it looks much better in real life, not unlike the MH C seats on the old A333.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 24):
...and other sounds. That's why I'm not a fan of the low cabin noise level.

It's hard to say whether I would prefer the droning of the engines or other sounds...luckily I've only flown on the A380 in premium but it might be different in Y with more people within earshot.

Quoting PlaneHunter (Reply 24):
Which is not bad either IMO!

Yes, still good, that wasn't meant to come over as to much of a complaint, although the 2003 Dom did spoil me somewhat.


Top Of Page
Forum Index

Reply To This Topic Poor Man’s First- EK A380 First HKG-BKK-HKG (2/3)
Username:
No username? Sign up now!
Password: 


Forgot Password? Be reminded.
Remember me on this computer (uses cookies)
  • Trip reports only! Other topics here
  • If criticizing an airline, express yourself in a dignified manner.
  • No adverts of any kind. This includes web pages.
  • No hostile language or criticizing of others.
  • Do not post copyright protected material.
  • Use relevant and describing topics.
  • Check if your post already been discussed.
  • Check your spelling!
  • DETAILED RULES
Add Images Add SmiliesPosting Help

Please check your spelling (press "Check Spelling" above)


Similar topics:More similar topics...
First Time On The Whalejet, HKG-BKK-HKG On EK In J posted Sun Jan 29 2012 04:54:00 by 63Bobster
CX First Class HKG-DXB, EK Business Class DXB-HKG posted Tue Sep 3 2002 11:24:24 by CXHKG
EK J-class (A380): HKG-BKK-HKG posted Sun Jul 1 2012 07:56:02 by AndrewE
The Land Of "Bling" - EK A380 In F (BKK-HKG) posted Sat Sep 17 2011 04:58:10 by SQLover
CX 839 First Class "Milestone Upgrade" YVR-HKG posted Thu Mar 31 2011 15:05:06 by fjiii
Cathay Pacific First Class: HKG-BKK (w/pics) posted Sun Jun 22 2008 05:04:03 by Fbgdavidson
Thai Airways A380: HKG - BKK, October 2012 posted Mon Oct 8 2012 11:33:20 by win1290
SQ A380/77W SIN-HKG With Singapore Girls & Boys posted Mon Jul 30 2012 20:20:24 by airbusmango
EK First LGW-DXB-SYD Rtn - The Full Report posted Sun Oct 25 2009 12:12:49 by Eccc
Singapore Air SQ11/972 First Class LAX-NRT-SIN-BKK posted Sun Sep 28 2008 11:03:47 by Lufthansa747

Sponsor Message:
Printer friendly format