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EK F MEL-SIN-MEL  
User currently offlinelammified From Singapore, joined Nov 2005, 28 posts, RR: 0
Posted (1 year 3 months 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 19273 times:

Hi everyone! I've been a daily visitor to this site for the better part of the last decade, finally decided to bite the bullet and post a TR. This report covers 2 flights on Emirates in First Class between MEL-SIN (EK405) in Jun 2012 and SIN-MEL (EK404) in Feb 2013.

I've been flying Emirates for most medium to long haul flights since 2010, and have actually developed a strong liking for this airline, despite its numerous shortcomings when compared to heavyweights like SQ. The main reason for this is my frankly absurd operational upgrade record on this city pair. Both flights in this report started out as paid economy tickets, and as the title would suggest, I was nowhere near the economy cabin on both. As an added note, at the time of these flights, I was only a Silver member of Skywards.

I am currently in the final year of my undergraduate studies in Melbourne, and all my travel between my home in Singapore and Melbourne has been exclusively on EK, probably the wisest decision I've made in hindsight, not just for the higher baggage allowance, but for other reasons such as that mentioned above.

The end of June in Melbourne is normally cold and damp, being well into the first month on the southern winter. It is also around the time when the examination period for the first semester of university concludes, and thus there are a large number of university students travelling home for the winter vacation. Most people familiar with Australian universities would know of the large number of Singaporean and Malaysian students attending university here, and therefore flights from MEL to SIN, KUL and numerous other Asian destinations tend to depart with full loads during this period.

For my school, the winter vacation is only 3 weeks long, and I did not have plans to fly home for this break. But my family decided to hold an early 60th birthday celebration for my mother in Bali, and with both my sisters flying in from London, I didn't really have any excuse to not be present. My existing itinerary that brought me to Melbourne in February had a return booked in November, and changing it to secure a return at the end of June was next to impossible when I was informed of the birthday plans in May. My only option was to book an ex-MEL return itinerary, which at that point was going for AUD1085. Beggars can't be choosers, so I booked my flights and packed my bags. I don't mind paying a bit more to fly EK, since I was upgraded on my February flight from Y to J, and one could only hope that these things happen.

A few days before my flight home, a close friend of mine (a.net member 9VSWA), who was also flying on EK405, but on a different date, had informed me that he had received the 'exclusive' Emirates upgrade email, which offered an upgrade to J for AUD219. This grants increased baggage allowance, priority check-in and baggage handling and lounge access and of course the seat and service on the flight. Well worth it for a 7 hour flight. I received a similar email a few days before my flight, and promptly paid the fee without batting an eyelid. First step complete - Economy to Business.

Tullamarine Airport is probably the most inaccessible airport in this part of the world if one is not driving, but since this trip home was only for 2 weeks, I decided to drive to Tullamarine and park my car at an off-site long term carpark and then catch their courtesy shuttle to the terminal.

I had done my online checkin 24 hours prior to departure, and it clearly said Business Class on the self-printed boarding pass when I initially did so. In my rush to pack, I misplaced that BP and decided to print another in case the checkin staff gave any problems (The EK check-in staff at MEL then were quite possibly the rudest counter staff I've ever had the pleasure of encountering) . This was 10am on the day of the flight, and when I printed it out, it now said First Class, 1K. I thought it may have been a glitch, but didn't think much of it at the time. Second step complete – Business to First.

Rocking up to the check-in desks, I walked over to the First Class desk just to see what they would say. The lady welcomed me with a smile (It still astounds me how differently they treat you when you're standing on a red carpet), and when I enquired as to my seat, she said that economy and business were overbooked, and hence the bump to First. She handed me a proper boarding pass, an Express Path Card and informed me of the lounge facility, tagged my bags with Priority First tags, and sent them on their way. The ISS rent-a-cop guarding the entrance to airside took a look at my BP and Express card and directed me through the express path (I have been harrassed by them previously when flying Y) Security was quick and immigration was empty, and then I was straight to the lounge via the unavoidable duty free corridor.

The Emirates Lounge in Melbourne is located one floor above the waiting lounges for gates 9 and 11. It is quite a large lounge, which was empty when I arrived. Decent selection of food (which hasn’t changed in the last 2 years) and good selection of drinks. I had a glass of Veuve Cliquot and some light food whilst enjoying the sight of SQ228 and QF9 departing for Singapore.
Some photos before the flight (I do apologise for the poor quality, these were taken on my Blackberry Torch)
First time holding a F boarding pass
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/BPCard.jpg
Excellent view overlooking the apron and the runways

Interesting being higher up than an A380 (SQ228 to SIN)
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/480417_10150872102441315_1759365695_n.jpg

It was quiet for a while after both A380s departed, and then the 77W that was to fly me home was towed into view and parked at Gate 9. I decided to leave the lounge early and board the aircraft.


Gate 9 at Melbourne sits below the main departure floor, and there is only a single escalator to head down. As soon as general boarding was called, the entire planeload surged for the escalator, with the ground staff (the same folk at check-in) screaming trying to maintain order. They wanted to check every person’s boarding pass, and was cleared to go down when I flashed my First Class BP. The gate splits into 2 zones at the lower level, with J and Y pax using the right lane, and F pax using the left lane, which later go into separate aerobridges. The queue for the right lane was long, and I walked up to the agent manning the left lane confidently, all whilst getting death glares from the queue of Y pax alongside – I understand their sentiments seeing that I’m a youngish guy wearing a threadless t-shirt and jeans in F (don’t judge me… I’ve flown QR J in t-shirt, shorts and sandals, granted that was from DPS) My BP was scanned, a short walk down the aerobridge, and I was the first person on board the plane.

Date: 26/06/12
Route: MEL-SIN
Flight: EK405
Reg: A6-ECF (Boeing 777-31H/ER)
Seat No: 1K

The 77Ws operating EK404/405 are configured 8F (Suites) 42J (Angled-Flat) 304Y and are fitted with crew rests. These aircraft are usually assigned to the longest 77W flights in the Emirates network.

I was warmly welcomed onboard by the male Indian purser, and he took my hand luggage and walked me to my seat, introducing me to the other 2 female flight attendants in F for the flight, one a Canadian and the other from Hong Kong. This is the sight that greeted me at Suite 1K.


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The purser hung my trenchcoat in the closet, and offered me a welcome drink, with the obvious selection being the 2003 Dom Perignon. The Canadian flight attendant, who delivered the drink, then offered me a selection of publications, from which I selected the current Top Gear issue. I sat back, drinking the champagne and just soaking in the ambience of the F cabin while waiting for boarding to be completed. The wine list and menu were offered, and I was asked for my drink order for post-takeoff. Amenity kits, pyjamas and slippers were offered as well.

A6-ECF was one of the first few aircraft fitted with this version of the F-cabin, it was only the 5th EK 777 fitted with the Panasonic eX2 powered ICE Digital Widescreen, and one of the first to have the Teague designed high ceiling and special Door 1 raised entry, which are exclusive to Emirates. It lacked the electronic window shades of the newer 777s, but the A and K suites still had the buttons for such a feature. The difference between the standard 777 cabin without overhead bins, as seen on SQ and CX and this version on EK is stark, especially over the middle suites. The effect is even more pronounced when the starry sky lighting is enabled and the cabin lights dimmed. The tacky faux wood panelling is quite overpowering when first encountered, you just get accustomed to it after a while.




Boarding was soon completed with the aircraft 100% full in all 3 classes, and the aircraft pushed back for departure. It was a short taxi to runway 16 for a departure towards the south. The safety video was played and the cabin lights dimmed for a night departure, as per standard procedure.

This picture snapped during taxi-out just goes to show how long the 77W is from the inside.


It was weird having 3 windows to look out of during the takeoff. Some shots of the Western suburbs



The aircraft made a right turn towards the northwest and the purser announced the languages spoken by the crew on the flight, and played the ICE welcome video on the IFE.
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/556056_10150872109081315_1508001032_n.jpg

The cabin crew released the suites from ground mode, which allowed the doors to be closed by the touch screen controller. The suites in F have funky, almost Fast & the Furious-esque floor lighting
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Dinner orders were taken, and I fired up the ICE Digital Widescreen system to make a playlist and watch some movies.

Food on this flight was completely on demand, with a wide selection of appetisers, mains, light bites and desserts on offer.

A la carte Dining

Canapes
A selection of hot and cold savouries, including warm beef satay, classic smoked salmon and crème fraiche blini, halloumi cheese with grilled pear, vegetable tart, teriyaki chicken skewer, marinated mozzarella with shredded basil, marinated mushrooms and marinated mixed olives

Appetisers

Caviar
Perfectly prepared chilled caviar presented with a traditional selection of finely chopped onion, chopped boiled egg, sour cream and lemon, served with crisp Melba toast and soft blini pancake

Salmon and sand crab terrine
Seafood delight of layered salmon and crab, served with refreshing tomato and mango salad and an aromatic coriander salsa verde

Roast duck breast
Tender ducking breast, roasted and served with a zesty orange and palm heart salad with a light shallot and truffle vinaigrette

Main Courses

Poached blue eye cod
Fresh fish fillet gently poached, served with bouillabaisse broth, carrots, courgettes and steamed chat potatoes

Lamb shank
Boneless braised slow cooked tender lamb shank, broccoli florets, sautéed squash and red pepper with chive marbled creamy mashed potato

Ginger and shallot chicken
Succulent chicken pieces cooked Asian style with ginger and shallot, served with seasonal stir-fried vegetables and fried egg noodles

Pappardelle pasta
Cracked pepper pappardelle pasta cooked al dente, presented with creamed leaf spinach, roasted red peppers and green olives, topped with a sweet tomato jam and fresh parmesan shavings

Corn-fed chicken breast
Succulent skinless chicken breast, served with apricot and pine nut couscous, broccolini and kabsa sauce

A la carte vegetables
Our chefs have paired each meal with their ideal accompaniments, but we offer a variety of alternative vegetables to your taste, including sautéed woodland mushrooms, buttered fine green beans, saffron flavoured rice, and steamed potatoes

Bread basket
Choose soft, crusty, granary, garlic or Arabic from our variety of freshly baked rolls and breads

Light Bites

Seasonal salad
Crisp fresh garden salad leaves and vegetables, tossed in your preferred dressing

Wild mushroom soup
Thick creamy home-style soup, served with sautéed sliced wild mushroom

Vegetable consommé
Lightly seasoned, traditional concentrated vegetable bouillon, served with garnish

Cheese board
A carefully chosen assortment of the finest boutique cheeses from around the world, served with a selection of crudités, crackers and dried fruits

Selection of open sandwiches
A smorgasbord of tempting sandwiches, including spiced tandoori chicken breast, hot-smoked salmon, cream cheese and grilled pesto vegetables

Sweet Delights

Traditional opera cake
Moist layered sponge and cream gateau, served with crème anglaise

Baked orange and almond pudding
Rich zesty pudding, served warm with a citrus anglaise

Selection of fruit
A seasonal assortment of the finest fresh cut fruits

Selection of pastries
A choice of delicious individual desserts including decadent chocolate cake, mini fresh fruit tartlet and mango cheesecake

Chocolates
A luxurious rich chocolate selection provides the perfect finale

I was first offered canapés.
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/529372_10150872117501315_2025947004_n.jpg

An Emirates branded tablecloth was then set, before the cutlery and other serviceware was arranged on the table.
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Individual bread baskets were distributed, with the garlic bread being the best of the bunch. I accepted the seconds that were offered and asked for a third serving. They were that good.
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/539411_10150872118481315_242695921_n.jpg

Salad Dressing, Salt and Pepper Shakers and Butter
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Next up was Caviar (first time for me)
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Salad and mushroom soup followed (nothing particularly noteworthy)
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The main was ginger and shallot chicken with noodles and vegetables (again nothing spectacular)
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/251879_10150872119021315_1821779398_n.jpg
Finished off with an Orange and almond pudding and an Earl Grey, with godiva chocolates offered as well (probably the best course of the dinner)
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I asked the purser to turn down the bed whilst I went to the lavatory. Both F lavs are behind the cockpit, and are similar in size to regular lavs, just nicer wood panelling. By this time, we were over the middle of Australia, about 5 hours to SIN. I returned to the suite and settled in to try and catch some sleep. I had to touch screen controller set to the airshow and the main screen turned off. All the miscellaneous electronics within the suite do produce a bluish glow that can be quite irritating when trying to sleep.
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/552623_10150872120986315_515525243_n.jpg
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I woke up about 3 hours later, when the aircraft was tracking over DPS. I used the ‘Room Service’ button to call the galley and ordered some light bites. I asked what was available, and was told that everything on the menu was still available except for the mushroom soup. The table was set and the food was served.

http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/376423_10150872121571315_1195860991_n.jpg

Salmon and Sand Crab Terrine
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/394651_10150872121946315_198843565_n.jpg

Tandoori Chicken Breast Sandwich
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Small desserts
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I watched older episodes of Top Gear and drank more Dom to while the time away. It was soon time to start the descent into Singapore. The mood lighting system has a dazzling array of colours, which simulated a sunrise within the cabin, oddly at 11pm local time.


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The high ceiling in its entirety


We tracked north over Johor before turning to intercept the ILS for runway 20R.

Final approach for 20R off the nose camera

We touched down on schedule and taxied quickly to the gate.

Parting shot of the Suite, with the mattress pad and duvet
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/545137_10150872127446315_1220816405_n.jpg
Going nowhere (at the gate)
http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/First%20Class%20on%20the%20Emirates%20Boeing%20777300ER/428417_10150872127561315_18039063_n.jpg

I was first off the aircraft, as opposed to being first on in MEL, and cleared immigration swiftly through the automatic gates. I waited about 5 mins before the priority baggage was delivered.

All in all, this flight was beyond my wildest dreams, especially since I’m a normal university student on a student budget when travelling. This itinerary was particularly lucrative, as I was also offered the email upgrade for the return two weeks later, which I gladly paid for. So for a grand total of about AUD1600, I flew F MEL-SIN and then J SIN-MEL, which is in every possible scenario excellent value for money.

I never thought I’d get the chance to fly F again, but funnily enough, the next section of this report will detail my next F experience on EK, going on EK404 back to MEL in Feb earlier this year. The circumstances of my flying F on this next leg would astound even the most frequent travellers. Till then, enjoy this part of the report. It’s my first ever, so all comments are most welcome.

V

[Edited 2013-08-23 23:33:14]

[Edited 2013-08-23 23:50:24]

11 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlinedirktraveller From Singapore, joined Jan 2011, 617 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (1 year 3 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 19056 times:

Hi lammified

Congratulations for your first TR up here. A really enjoyable read. I always wonder how was the F experience on this route.

As a student (same as you) I did fly this route routinely throughout the year. If you don't mind, where do you study currently in Melbourne (you may PM me if you preferred to)?

Emirates First Class does look great and flashy as usual. I like the 'room service' button you mentioned, in which you could have some "light bites" outside of your meal service schedules. Now if they could offer an instant noodle upon request in Economy, your "light bites" was definitely looks great (and not that light after all).

Anyway I was really amazed how Emirates treated their members. As you were said you were Silver, but seems they always have these upgrades and payable upgrades in store for their members. A colleague of mine always fly on Emirates and frequently enjoyed this upgrades as a Skywards member.

I'm slightly curious how these upgrades work, is it complimentary, redemption, or you purely paid for it (without getting your points cut)? Maybe I should re-consider to switch my allegiance to EK ?! 

Did you know in the end why did you get upgraded from Business to First? I'm curious if the flight was really that overbooked that they put you into F.

Quoting lammified (Thread starter):
Tullamarine Airport is probably the most inaccessible airport in this part of the world if one is not driving, but since this trip home was only for 2 weeks

Being used to Changi, I kind of having the same sentiments of Tullamarine Airport on my first few months in Melbourne. Of course later on I am getting used to the less simplistic way to get to MEL.

Hope you don't mind the lots of questions I had.
Anyway, thank you so much for sharing this report!

Regards,
Dirktraveller.


User currently offlinelammified From Singapore, joined Nov 2005, 28 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (1 year 3 months 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 18986 times:

Hey dirktraveller

Quoting dirktraveller (Reply 1):
Anyway I was really amazed how Emirates treated their members. As you were said you were Silver, but seems they always have these upgrades and payable upgrades in store for their members. A colleague of mine always fly on Emirates and frequently enjoyed this upgrades as a Skywards member.

I'm slightly curious how these upgrades work, is it complimentary, redemption, or you purely paid for it (without getting your points cut)? Maybe I should re-consider to switch my allegiance to EK ?! 

Did you know in the end why did you get upgraded from Business to First? I'm curious if the flight was really that overbooked that they put you into F.

I know of many people getting op-ups on EK404/405 and EK432/433, especially out of SIN. Many members of my own family, with Skywards Gold, Silver and even Blue have been op-upped on multiple occasions.

Most of my upgrades so far have been complimentary. The one I mention above was upgraded from Y to J with the email cash upgrade, and J to F was an operational upgrade due to overbooking. I have on a few occasions used miles to upgrade, and the only difference is the chaffeur drive, which in Singapore is essentially irrelevant. The next part of this report, which I'm about halfway through was for operational reasons, again due to overbooking.

Periods when students are travelling are traditionally the highest volume of traffic, but there are other periods as well that can be quite busy. Op-ups on EK are commonplace. It's about how full the flight is, your Skywards status and of course the first alphabet of your last name (this particular factor was confirmed to me by the lounge staff in SIN), which is odd because my last name starts with a T, so technically I would be at the back an upgrade list if alphabetical order was concerned.

For more information on this, check on the Skywards thread on Flyertalk.

Cheers

V


User currently offlinelammified From Singapore, joined Nov 2005, 28 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (1 year 3 months 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 18813 times:

The next part of this report starts in a new year. It’s now 2013, and I’m returning to Melbourne for my final year of undergraduate studies. I generally fly down under about a week before school starts, to give me enough time to get things in order, buy textbooks etc. I’m once again booked in economy, seat 18A selected months beforehand.

No upgrade email arrives in the days leading up the flight, and I’m not exactly expecting one either. Flights to Melbourne during this period are generally full, again due to the flood of students heading back to school. I proceed with online check-in 24 hours before the flight, and everything is still showing as economy.

I’m busy with errands in the morning and early afternoon, and I check my flight details online at 5pm, and it now shows 7J – Business Class. Again, step one complete – Economy to Business. I certainly don’t expect another upgrade. I am fully aware of what is within the realm of possibility, and a double upgrade certainly isn’t. The thought doesn’t even cross my mind. I get my bags together, and leave for the airport with my family. I check libhomeradar and find out that the flight will be operated by A6-EBY, an older 77W which doesn’t have ICE Digital Widescreen, and I gripe about not being able to make my own playlist on the drive to the airport.

I get to the airport, check-in at the business class counters (owing to my Skywards Silver status), bags are priority tagged (it was nice of the agent to do so, op-ups normally do not get their bags priority tagged), and I am handed a boarding pass saying 7J with no lounge invitation (op-ups do not enjoy lounge access either). My family and I head upstairs to the Paradise Inn Restaurant to have a nice dinner before I fly off. After dinner, I pass through immigration and browse the duty free shops before heading to the gate. I’m looking forward to having a nice supper onboard, and then to sleep until the flight arrives in Melbourne.

Security at Changi Airport is done at the individual gates, and passengers from the earlier leg from DXB have formed a queue and it’s long… F and J passengers can use a premium lane to bypass the queue and that’s exactly what I did. Security is generally trouble-free, and now it’s to the gate agent to scan my BP. She takes my BP and scans it, and the scanner flashes red. I panic internally, thinking that I’ve been thrown to the back of the bus. The agent starts fiddling with the keyboard, and I glance over at the screen. The last line of text on the screen now shows ‘Shift to 2K’ or something along these lines. A short cabin breakdown: F is in rows 1 & 2, J is rows 6 – 11, and Y is row 17 onwards. I am doing mental fistpumps at this point, and the agent uses a pen to scratch off 7J and writes 2K below. Second step complete – Business to First. I’m pretty much over the moon at this point, wondering whether this luck would be better used in buying lottery tickets as opposed to cabin upgrades on 7 hour flights.

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I call my older sister, who was bitching during dinner about never getting upgraded before, and rub this new development in her face – let’s just say her response would give those screaming goats from the Taylor Swift videos on Youtube a good run for their money. She passes me over to my mother whilst screaming that life isn’t fair. My mother tells me to enjoy it while it lasts, wishes me a safe journey and tells me that her favourite TV show (Rizzoli and Isles) is on and that I’m disrupting her viewing pleasure. Gee thanks mum, great to know how high on your list of priorities I sit…

Boarding is soon called, and I’m among the first to get up and pass through the doors onto the aerobridge. Almost all gates at Changi have at least 2 aerobridges, and the first aerobridge is connected to the L1 door. It is ‘guarded’ by a Dnata agent to allow only F pax through, and he waves me on when I indicate that I intend to use this aerobridge. I have to explain that I have been moved before he relents. He probably fancies himself as Gandalf saying ‘you shall not pass!’

Date: 23/02/13
Route: SIN-MEL
Flight: EK404
Reg: A6-EBY (Boeing 777-36N/ER)
Seat: 2K

I reach the aircraft door, where I am welcomed onboard by the Filipino purser Jerome. He takes my bags and walks me to my seat, also introducing me to the 2 male flight attendants joining him in F, one from Germany and the other from Hong Kong.

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A6-EBY is an older 77W than the one I flew on in the first part of this report. It was recently refurbished, hence the new electronic window shades, but it retains the older Panasonic S3000 ICE system, and lacks the newer cabin features such as the high ceiling in the F cabin. I was offered a welcome drink, and 2003 Dom Perignon is the drink of choice, Moet Chandon Brut Imperial was the other champagne option available.

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Amenity kits, pyjamas and slippers are offered as well.

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The cabin is feels noticeably smaller, largely in part due to the lower ceiling on this older aircraft, but the mood lighting and starry sky effects mitigate this somewhat.
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Soon, boarding was completed, all 3 classes at 100%, and we pushed back for departure. Hot towels were offered (I neglected to mention this in the earlier leg, but there were too many towel offerings to keep count)

AF257 to CDG at the next gate
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It was a long taxi past Terminal 3, over the South Cross taxiway to runway 02C.
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We departed towards the north, before making a right turn towards the southeast. The SOP was followed, with the purser announcing the languages spoken by the crew, and thereafter coming round to release the suites from their ground mode, and then serve some warm nuts and drinks. I requested to switch out the warm nuts, and my request was promptly dealt with, and a saucer of chips was served shortly after. I also consumed drinks from the minibar.


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As with the last flight, food on this flight was completely on demand, with continental breakfast, snacks, appetisers, mains, light bites, and sweet delights.

A la carte Dining

Continental Breakfast

Fruit juice
Refreshing choice of freshly squeezed juices

Breakfast fruits
A palette or ripe tropical and seasonal cut fresh fruits

Yoghurt
Natural or flavoured with fruit

Assorted cereals
Choice of crunchy cornflakes or nutritious muesli

Breakfast bread basket
A variety of soft and crusty fresh baked breads, butter croissants and flaky breakfast pastries served with butter and preserves

Delicatessen’s cold meats and cheese
Offering a gourmet selection of goat’s cheese, creamy French Boursin with pepper, crumbly Greek feta and Swiss gruyere cheeses, with shaved roast chicken and wafer-thin beef, dressed with an array of fresh crudités and garnishes

Snacks

Instant Cup Noodles
Popular and satisfying, instant cup noodles are available at any time

Appetisers

Caviar
Perfectly prepared chilled caviar presented with a traditional selection of finely chopped onion, chopped boiled egg, sour cream and lemon, served with crisp Melba toast and soft blini pancake

Crab remoulade with papaya and melon
Fresh crabmeat mixture, with juicy papaya and melon, garnished with roasted plum and pink peppercorns

Beef tenderloin roll with daikon
Prime beef tenderloin with Japanese white radish, served with potato salad seasoned with wasabi and rich tangy caramelised onion chutney

Main Courses

Snapper with herb, onion and olive sauce
Firm fresh fish fillet in a crisp polenta coating, dressed with a herb, onion and olive sauce, served with baby carrots, green asparagus and crushed potatoes

Grilled tenderloin
Prime beef steak, drizzled with piquant black pepper sauce, served with red pepper, woodland mushrooms and golden roast potatoes

Roast duck breast
Toasted tender duckling breast, dressed with rich garlic oyster sauce, served with steamed celery, baby corn and steamed white rice

Gnocchi with herbs and tomato
Hand rolled fresh baby potato dumplings, sautéed and tossed in a herb and tomato sauce, servied with yellow and green courgettes

Poached chicken breast with tarragon and pea sauce
Succulent chicken breast gently poached and served with an aromatic tarragon and pea sauce, broccoli florets and ribbons of al dente fettucini pasta

A la carte vegetables
Our chefs have paired each meal with their ideal accompaniments, but we offer a variety of alternative vegetables to your taste, including glazed carrot batons, sauteed fine green beans, creamy mashed potatoes, and saffron infused rice

Bread basket
Choose soft, crusty, granary, garlic or Arabic from our variety of freshly baked rolls and breads

Light Bites

Seasonal salad
Crisp fresh garden salad leaves and vegetables, tossed in your preferred dressing

Cheese board
A carefully chosen assortment of the finest boutique cheeses from around the world, served with a selection of crudités, crackers and dried fruits

Sweet Delights

Lime and passion fruit gateau
Citrus sweet and fruity cake, served with fresh redcurrant coulis

Selection of fruit
A seasonal assortment of the finest fresh cut fruits

Chocolates
A luxurious rich chocolate selection provides the perfect finale

Supper was served about an hour or so out of Singapore, when the aircraft was tracking over Java. Turbulence on this flight was quite severe between Singapore and Port Hedland, I distinctly remember my water glass becoming weightless at some points as I held it in my hand and wine was sloshing out of glasses.

Table Setting
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Caviar to start
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Beef tenderloin entrée
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Roast duck main
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Dessert
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A hotel towel and Godiva chocolates to end supper
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I requested my seat be turned down whilst going to the lavatory. The purser saw to it, and brought an immigration card and express path card to me before I went to sleep. He also asked if I wanted to have breakfast and when I would like it served. By this time, we were about to make landfall over Port Hedland and I wanted to get some sleep, so I kept it simple and requested instant noodles be served an hour out of Melbourne.


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I was roused from my slumber about 3.5 hours later as the aircraft was about to overfly Adelaide, and I was served my requested breakfast. Please don’t judge me for requesting instant cup noodles for breakfast in F. I’m not exactly a pastry person, and none of the other options seemed appetising at that time of day. At least they served the noodles in a bowl and not in the original cup. I had some apple juice to go along with it.
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Very soon after, we started descending over Western Victoria, before joining left base for runway 34 and landing on schedule.

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http://i44.photobucket.com/albums/f13/lammified/Facebook/Second%20time%20in%20First%20on%20Emirates/484952_10151254068056315_1641828315_n.jpg
Melbourne CBD in the distance

Final approach to runway 34
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On the landing roll, we passed the big brother EK406 departing for AKL.
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We parked at one of the gates in the International Terminal extension, and then began the long trek to passport control and customs. Thankfully, the queues were non-existent and I was out of the terminal less than half an hour after I left the aircraft.

I don’t think I’ll ever have the opportunity to fly in F again anytime soon, unless something like this happens again, I’m certainly not holding my breath over it. Flying Emirates over the years has made me expect the unexpected at the best and worst of times. I just did a SIN-CMB return in Y last month to requalify for Skywards Silver – I certainly place a value on being a frequent flyer, especially considering the 2 flights I’ve enjoyed in this report, and numerous other operational upgrades over the last 2 years. I hope to hear your views on Emirates and your take on upgrades that you’ve gotten over the years.

Happy flying!

V


User currently offlineMSS658 From Belgium, joined Oct 2010, 2474 posts, RR: 16
Reply 4, posted (1 year 3 months 18 hours ago) and read 18095 times:

Hey

Great trip report, thanks for sharing it with us!
EK F looks top notch as usual.

Greetings
Marc



Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
User currently offlinedirktraveller From Singapore, joined Jan 2011, 617 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (1 year 3 months 16 hours ago) and read 17802 times:

Hi lammified,

Thanks so much for taking the time to explain how it works. I think I've told you I had a friend who flew EK everytime she goes back to SIN and she told me that she was given an upgrade for most of the time as a skywards member, which made me curious on how this works, which you have explained it really well on your reply.

Quoting lammified (Reply 2):
I know of many people getting op-ups on EK404/405 and EK432/433, especially out of SIN. Many members of my own family, with Skywards Gold, Silver and even Blue have been op-upped on multiple occasions.

Wow, even blue can have an op-up on some occasions? How generous of EK I must say. I liked the email for pay upgrade, its really a treat for members, although they have to pay a little extra, which I think should be worth it for the length of the flight and the Emirates business class service they got.

Anyway, I did enjoy the continuation of the report (your return trip to Melbourne). The roast duck for supper looks really tasty. Once again, thanks for the reply.

Regards,
Dirktraveller.


User currently offlineMIAspotter From Spain, joined Nov 2001, 2822 posts, RR: 25
Reply 6, posted (1 year 2 months 4 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 16872 times:

Hello!

Thanks for sharing this report, F in EK sure looks fancy, and having the opportunity to upgrade from Y to C for a nominal fee is not too bad.

I´d love to try EK someday (they will start bringing the A380 to BCN from feb 2014 so there´s an excuse lol)

Regards
MIAspotter



I think, therefore I don´t fly Ryanair.
User currently offlinepokfur From Singapore, joined Aug 2013, 422 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (1 year 2 months 3 weeks 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 16137 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Hello lammified,

Enjoyed reading your report! Just posted my first 2 not too long ago on a.net too. So, Welcome!

Quoting lammified (Thread starter):
This was 10am on the day of the flight, and when I printed it out, it now said First Class, 1K.

That must have felt wonderful! The last time I was ever bumped up to first class (4 years ago   ), I got to sit next to Fiona Xie!   

Quoting lammified (Thread starter):
The difference between the standard 777 cabin without overhead bins, as seen on SQ and CX and this version on EK is stark, especially over the middle suites.

How fascinating! I guess this is really a personal preference because I find the 'not-that-high' ceiling of the 777s in SQ already too high for my liking. I can't imagine being in the EK cabin! I much prefer the low, cosy upper deck of the A380.

Thanks for sharing your trip! All the best for your studies. You must be graduating soon  

pokfur


User currently offlinegabrielchew From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 3331 posts, RR: 12
Reply 8, posted (1 year 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 13169 times:

Wow, what luck to get some many upgrades. I've only managed a few in recent years, and sadly all on short hops. EK F looks great.


http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights:LCY-ARN-AMS-LGW,STN-OTP-AMS-YUL,YQB-JFK-LAX-DUS-STN,LGW-DXB-BKK-HKG-
User currently offlineqantas077 From Australia, joined Jan 2004, 5861 posts, RR: 39
Reply 9, posted (1 year 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 12223 times:

EK routinely gives out u/g on this sector and I've been lucky enough to get quite a few into F. That said, I've found that they've really slipped and won't be flying them again in a hurry. Nice report.


a true friend is someone who sees the pain in your eyes, while everyone else believes the smile on your face.
User currently offlinelammified From Singapore, joined Nov 2005, 28 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (1 year 1 month 3 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 11896 times:

Hi qantas077,

Quoting qantas077 (Reply 9):
EK routinely gives out u/g on this sector and I've been lucky enough to get quite a few into F. That said, I've found that they've really slipped and won't be flying them again in a hurry. Nice report.

I find that Emirates is consistently inconsistent in their service delivery, some of their crews are excellent, and others absolutely mediocre, and this holds true in F, J and Y. I had a flight MEL-SIN in J late last year with an excellent flight attendant serving my cabin, and she was extremely friendly, attentive and chatty (could give the Singapore Girl a good run for her money except for the fact she was Polish), but some flights have absolutely atrocious crews, SIN-MEL in J in July 2011, only half the cabin received amenity kits, and it took 45 mins between the time they cleared my main course to the time they brought dessert, despite me reminding 3 different flight attendants, so I guess it's the luck of the draw when it comes to flying EK.

I think everyone knows that this route (as well as SIN-BNE and KUL-MEL) is upgrade gold for any frequent flyer, though I'm actually interested to see if the Qantas/Emirates tie up has altered the frequency and upgrade priority that Skywards members enjoy.

Thanks for the comments everyone!


User currently offlineqantas077 From Australia, joined Jan 2004, 5861 posts, RR: 39
Reply 11, posted (1 year 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 11046 times:

Quoting lammified (Reply 10):
I find that Emirates is consistently inconsistent in their service delivery, some of their crews are excellent, and others absolutely mediocre, and this holds true in F, J and Y.

I was on it a few weeks back all the way to Dubai and the crew from MEL-SIN was quite ok, but the crew to DXB were just plain horrible! I then got on EK201 to JFK and found the only exceptional cabin crew member was the girl who was from my home city of Melbourne!

out of SFO to DXB the crew was ok but it is a long flight and you can't expect to have everything 100% but running out of normal meals and being given a Hindu meal which was inedible is not acceptable. The final flights back to MEL were ok, via SIN again but the sector down to MEL was the best, served by a lovely attendant the entire flight and she was exceptional.

you might be interested to know that the crews bid for regions and stick to that..so, most crew do not enjoy doing US sectors because of the length of flight and a few other reasons which I won't mention here, the Asian sectors include Australia, India, Pakistan etc etc...then you have Europe, Africa & Latin America and that's how it's divided up.

The crew member I was chatting with was telling me she stays in Melbourne for 36hrs, back to SIN, then eventually back to DXB and a few days break and then on to Karachi and back to DXB and a few more days off followed by a sector to ADL.

I guess it's the luck of the draw but next trip I'll be using SQ suites.



a true friend is someone who sees the pain in your eyes, while everyone else believes the smile on your face.
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