EVA Airways BR 12
Boeing 747-400 (Registration: B-16402)
Los Angeles, CA, USA (LAX) to Taipei, Taiwan (TPE)
January 4, 2003
Seat: 46H (Economy/Aisle)
Gate: C6 (Terminal 2)
Scheduled Departure: 01/04 6:40 PM
Actual Departure: 01/04 7:07 PM
Scheduled Arrival: 01/04 2:00 PM
Actual Arrival: 01/04 2:07 PM
Scheduled Flight Time: 11:20
Actual Flight Time: 11:00
I arrived at Taipei's Chiang Kai-shek International Airport at about 4:15 PM. Usually, I would get to the airport at least 3 hours prior to departure. However, my past experience has shown that the earlier I check-in, the later my baggage is released on the carousel. So, I decided to arrive later at the airport. The check-in line for U.S.-bound Economy Class passengers was longer than usual. EVA Air had flights to Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Seattle/Newark. I waited in line for about 10 minutes before an agent was available to check me in. I was the 311st passenger to check-in. Check-in was smooth. I opted for an upgrade to Evergreen Deluxe seat in September 2002; however, the flight was fully booked, so I wasn't able to get the upgrade.
I passed through immigration at about 5:50 PM. I was at the gate at 6:00 PM. Unfortunately, after passing through security, EVA Air announced that boarding would be delayed. Boarding didn't start until about 6:30 PM. Unlike my flight in September, boarding was quite efficient. The ground staff begun with Super First, Super Business, and Evergreen Club Diamond and Gold passengers. Then, they started boarding Evergreen Deluxe passengers. Shortly afterwards, Economy passengers were boarded by row number.
The aircraft today was a Boeing 747-400 in the new EVA Air livery. This aircraft is configured for 386 passengers (8 in Super First; 16 in Super Business; 142 in Evergreen Deluxe; 220 in Economy). The seat pitch in Economy is 33"/34".
Once I was onboard, fortunately, I was able to stuff my backpack and laptop into the little overhead space remaining. Some people weren't as lucky and they had their carry-ons moved to another part of the aircraft. Service began before we were in the air. Flight attendants first came around with hot towels, then they came around with slippers. We had headsets in our seat pocket, and blankets and pillows were on our seats already. In Economy, we lack amenity kits, PTVs, and menus.
Once we were airborne, the flight attendants came around with U.S. immigration forms. Then, we were served a snack mix (peanuts, coated peas and peanuts) and a beverage. I was awfully hungry. Meals seem to have been served later than usual. Our dinner choices for the evening were: pork with rice, or beef curry with noodles. I chose the pork with rice. The meal came with a salad and thousand island dressing, a hot roll and butter, fruit, and a slice of blueberry cake. There were two rounds of hot coffee and hot tea each. Our choices of beverages included non-alcoholic drinks, red wine, and white wine.
After dinner, duty free sales were conducted. Then, the shades were closed, and the lights were dimmed. The flight attendants came around with drinks about every hour. I fell asleep later, so I wasn't sure if there were hot noodles or sandwiches during the flight. When I woke up, the flight attendants were already collecting the hot towels they were passing out prior to breakfast.
For breakfast, we were given the two selections that never seem to change for this flight: scrambled eggs (Western selection), and rice porridge (Oriental selection). I chose the Oriental selection (like always) which came with a hot Chinese bun, dried pork julienne, and some cold vegetables. We were given a choice of beverages. There was one round of hot coffee and hot tea.
After meals were collected, we had about an hour before beginning our descent into LAX. Prior to landing, our headsets were collected. We were on the ground at 1:45 PM, however, we waited quite a while for a Singapore Airlines plane to leave the gate we were going to use.
I enjoyed my flight with EVA Air. The meals weren't bad; the portions were right, and the taste was satisfactory. I really think EVA would install PTVs. I had difficulty sleeping at first since the overhead TV was too bright. I think that problem would be effectively resolved with PTVs. I think EVA should have more drink rounds and have more snack options. Other than that, I'm glad I chose EVA Air for my flight from Taipei to Los Angeles.