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Malaysia: Asia’s Best Kept Secret? (W/pics)  
User currently offlineSR 103 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1740 posts, RR: 38
Posted (9 years 7 months 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 18430 times:



Malaysian 195
Mumbai – Kuala Lumpur
Boeing 777-2H6/ER (9M-MRO)
Seat: 5A
Scheduled Departure Time: 23:10
Actual Departure Time: 23:05
Scheduled Arrival Time: 6:35
Actual Arrival Time: 6:15

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Check In: I reached the airport around 21:20 due to unforeseen traffic problems and said a goodbye to my parents. As the reporting time for the flight was 21:15, I bolted towards the x-ray machine where my bag was wrapped with Air India security tape. Following that, I briskly headed towards the Golden Club Class check in counter where there were two families in front of me. I waited impatiently until around 21:50 and an economy counter opened up and I was ushered there as the family in front of me was still checking in. The agent proceeded to check me in and tag my bag all the way to Los Angeles. She explained that once I got to Kuala Lumpur I would need to get my onward boarding pass from the transfer desk. She handed me a lounge invitation and my “Air India” boarding pass a moment later and wished me a pleasant flight. As I walked away I noticed a good six people in the Golden Club Class line. MH, don’t you think it is time to open up another counter?

I proceeded through immigration with no problems today as it took less than five minutes to get to the front of the line. Once through, I preceded downstairs towards the “Executive Lounge,” which was located directly across from gate 19. A friendly attendant greeted me at the door with a smile and showed me in. I wish I could say the lounge was good, but I am unable to. I grabbed a seat on one of the numerous red sofas and proceeded to sort out my paperwork after obtaining a Coke from the bar. Channel V was playing on the TV monitor above me with a program on techno music. I was a happy camper as long as I did not look around but once my eyes glanced up, the happiness vanished. The lounge has a distinctive theme to it; I believe it was “how many ways can you mess up red?” Look at the picture yourself. I just cannot believe how cheap it looked. The room looked as if someone had splashed different shades of red paint all over for decoration purposes.

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Boarding: 22:30 rolled by and the lounge agent made an announcement that all passengers should proceed to gate 15 for boarding. I headed out first trying to beat the rest of the crowd. Five minutes passed and I approached the x-ray machine with about three people in front of me. The line moved fast and I was in front of the gate a mere 45 seconds later. Around 22:40, boarding commenced with passengers needing assistance first. Golden Club Class was announced a minute later and I proceeded down the jetway which broke into two. Golden Club Class had its own jetway hooked up to door 1L while Economy passengers boarded through 2L.

I approached the aircraft and was welcomed onboard with a large smile by a very friendly flight attendant. I proceeded past the First Class seats to my cabin where another flight attendant was standing at the bulkhead.
“Welcome on board sir.”
I put my laptop case in the overhead bin and sat down. The cabin started filling up and a male flight attendant approached each passenger individually with a tray of drinks.
“Sir, I have a choice of orange juice, guava juice, or mango juice here.”
“I’ll have the mango please.”
“Certainly sir.”
This was a nice change from the usual OJ I am served by my normal carriers. Menus were handed out a short while later by a smiling female flight.
“Your menu for tonight Mr. Tamboowala.”

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We pushed back five minutes early with the safety video playing. And what do you know; the seat next to me was empty! This was a very good sign for the upcoming night flight. Outside my window I spotted a few planes here and there as Mumbai was still rather dull at this hour.

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Air India A310-300 to Chennia, Singapore, and Kuala Lumpur
Thai Airways A330-300 to Bangkok
Singapore 777-300 to Singapore
Delta 767-300 to Frankfurt and New York/JFK
Alitalia 767-300 to Milan Malpensa
Etihad A330-200 to Abu Dhabi

The Flight: Once we were airborne, the crew sprung into action by handing out headphones and amenity kits. An announcement was made about the entertainment system being turned on, so I decided to pull out my PTV which turned out to be larger than expected. It was almost identical to the KLM PTV on the 777’s. The interface was rather easy and the picture was clear and crisp. I settled on “Paparazzi” for tonight’s movie.
Hot towels were passed out with another smile and linens were placed on our tray tables a short while later. The menu for tonight’s Supper was:

Malaysian Satay
Our Famous Charcoal Grilled Chicken and Lamb Skewers
Topped with Spicy Peanut Sauce

* * * * * *

Appetizer
Fried Idli Chat

* * * * * *

Mughlai Murgh
Mild Spicy Indian Chicken Dish
Or
Rogan Josh
Traditional Lamb Dish Kashmiri Style
Or
Prawn Thermidor

* * * * * *

Vegetables and Accompaniments
VICHY CARROT AND GREEN BEANS
DHINGRI PALAK CORN
KABULI MINT PULAO
CREOLE POTATO

* * * * * *

Seasonal Fresh Fruits

Bread Selection


A drink cart came down the aisle first and the steward asked me for my drink choice. I opted for a glass of Pepsi which was placed on my tray along with the full can.

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A trolley was rolled down the aisle by the lead purser and once it got close to me, I paused the movie.
“Hello Mr. Tamboowala. Would you like some satay tonight?”
I nodded
“Excellent. We have chicken or lamb. You are more than welcome to have both if you wish.”
“Just the chicken for me tonight please.”
“Absolutely Mr. Tamboowala.”

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The plate was handed to me with a cold towel. As far as the satays go, Malaysian, you have a winner here. They were a really nice treat and I think this dish is one of the highlights of flying Malaysia. I really cannot describe how mouth watering they really were. The peanut sauce made it taste even better. The cold towel was certainly needed, as I had oil and peanut sauce all over my fingers. A small touch like this clearly showed Malaysia, had thought of everything.

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The plate was cleared and a dinner tray was brought around. A breadbasket was offered as well with a choice between two rolls and a paratha; I selected a twisted bread roll. The appetizer was a little on the tangy/spicy side, but I believe it is meant for an acquired taste as the people around me seem to enjoy it. It was collected a short while later and the main course trolley rolled around. For those of you unfamiliar with the meal concept on Malaysia Golden Club Class, each plate is individually created in front of you as per your wish, much like First Class on many airlines in the past. I simply opted for the prawns and potatoes today.

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Despite the funky look, it was delicious. I was not expecting it to be so good, but I was pleasantly surprised. The dessert today was a bowl of fruits consisting of two orange slices, two pineapple slices, two papaya slices and a single grape. They were fine, but I was surprised it was not a proper desert, which I’d have preferred. Then again it was past midnight when the meal was served so I assume most passengers preferred it to be light. Once I was done, the tray was collected and a glass of water was put on my armrest along with a hot towel to clean up. I reclined my seat and finished the rest of the movie.

The choices for this month’s Audio Video on Demand (AVOD) were:

Movies
The Cookout
The Locket
Nine Lives (Unstoppable)
Suspect Zero
Vanity Fair
Cellular
Criminal
Funky Monkey
Noel
Paparazzi
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow
Taxi
The Village
Wicker Park
Without a Paddle

TV
Absolutely Fabulous
Boomtown
Coupling
Dolce Vita
The Drew Carey Show
Everybody Loves Raymond
Fast Track
It’s Good to be Donald Trump
Planet Rock Profiles
The Ryder Cup 2004 Highlights
Music Videos
In-seat Exercise Video

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Not listed above is the music album list which is huge! I decided to settle in on “Café Del Mar –Volume 7” to zone out with. It did the trick as I was in a trance until descent started two hours later. First the lights were put on and then the captain came on the PA to announce descent. A minute later, a steward came by with a tray of orange juice, guava juice, and mango juice. I, of course, opted for the mango again which quenched my thirst. Another round of hot towels and I was refreshed and ready for landing. The crew were still all smiles, genuinely happy to full fill any request from passengers. The lead flight attendant was walking around doing some final checks and came upon my seat and turned to me.
“How was everything Mr. Tamboowala?”
“Everything was excellent. Thank you for asking.”
“My pleasure. Was this your first time flying Malaysia Airlines?”
“This is my first time.”
“Well I hope we made a lasting impression on you.”
“You have no idea!”
She smiled and went back to the galley.

Arrival and Transit: We touched down at 6:15 and taxied slowly to our gate, C27 and docked at 6:30. As I was deplaning I said bye to the crew who were all smiles.
“Bye, thanks for a great flight.”
“Anytime Mr. Tamboowala. Have a good onward flight.”
I got off the jetway a few seconds later where I made a beeline for the Transit desk. I followed the signs and was firmly planted in front of an agent manning the First and Business Class desk two minutes later. My onward boarding-pass was issued and I was directed towards the train for immigration.

Now this is where the problems started. There were only two counters for the “120 Hour Visa” but close to 40 people in line. We waited and waited but the line was crawling at a snails pace. Eventually another counter was opened and the lines were separated into two. I managed to get to an agent at 7:30, nearly an hour after my plane touched down! The female agent was rather surly and once I confirmed I was heading to LAX, she started ripping and stamping the paper work. Two minutes later a visa was issued and my passport was slammed back on the counter with a loud “Next.” I grabbed my passport and headed off towards the Pan Pacific Airport Hotel, something the Malaysia Airlines office in Mumbai had arranged for me.

The agent behind the desk welcomed me and I handed her my MH Hotel voucher, which was promptly exchanged for a key. Malaysia Airlines had also provided me with Breakfast and Lunch but I opted to just get some shuteye, as I would have enough to eat on my onward flight. The room was nice and big and had a great view of the highest control tower in the world. I crawled into bed and slept like a baby for four hours.

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38 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineSR 103 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1740 posts, RR: 38
Reply 1, posted (9 years 7 months 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 18386 times:



Malaysian 094
Kuala Lumpur – Taipei
Boeing 747-4H6 (9M-MPQ)
Seat: 18K
Scheduled Departure Time: 15:15
Actual Departure Time: 15:25
Scheduled Arrival Time: 19:40
Actual Arrival Time: 19:40

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I woke up around 12, took a shower, and was at the front desk for check out at 12:45. After a quick walk to the airport I headed straight for immigration, which was deserted and took no more than three minutes to complete. Once the train docked at the International terminal, I proceeded to look for the Malaysia Golden lounge. I found a sign pointing upstairs and all I can say is wow!

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I approached the agent and handed her my boarding pass. With a smile she told me the Los Angeles flight would board at 14:45. I proceeded towards the lounge and found a great spot in front of Gate C01 where a 744 was being loaded. One look at my boarding pass revealed it was none other than my plane, 9M-MPQ. Following this, I headed over to the bar to grab some munchies and a drink. The selection was rather large and I was impressed with the variety being offered. I grabbed a can of Pepsi Twist and took a plate full of snacks.

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The snacks I picked up consisted of a vegetable spring roll, an open faced salami sandwich, an opened faced roast beef sandwich and a chicken lollipop. The food was excellent, but I opted not to overeat here, as I wanted to sample the food on the plane. As far as the lounge goes, it was very well appointed. I however do prefer Cathay’s “Wing” in Hong Kong, which still remains my all time favorite lounge, but I have to say Malaysian put up one heck of a fight and has jumped into my top three all time favorite lounges. Around 14:15 I headed on out deciding it was time to do some Duty Free shopping.

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It was at this point that I realized just how wonderful the airport really is. Walking around was no problem as it was wide, spacious and not overflowing with people. There were some excellent views of air traffic outside as well. Unfortunately, the weather was not co-operating with me and I had to snap photos through some rain soaked windows.

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Around 14:40 I was at the gate, which had a large snake-like line forming. Thankfully they were using C2 to screen passengers for our flight, but no one really knew as it was not announced, therefore I got lucky I suppose. Once x-ray was done, my boarding pass was sent through the machine and I was standing in front of a Malaysian gentleman looking for the correct documentation for the United States. Once he flipped through my passport and saw my numerous German residency permits, he starting speaking to me in German. He was certainly friendlier than the security officers I normally encounter in Europe when flying to the US.

Once I was through, I stood on the side near the entrance waiting for boarding to be called. At exactly 14:50, boarding was announced for passengers needing assistance and traveling with children. At the same time, First and Business Class passengers were invited to board at their leisure through the first door designated solely for them. I proceeded towards the entrance where a member of MH ground staff was ushering passengers to the second door. I showed him my Golden Club boarding pass to which he smiled and moved out of the way.

I was greeted with a smile as I stepped on board and was pointed towards my seat in the business class cabin. As I approached my seat, a gorgeous flight attendant welcomed me onboard.
“Hello, how are you doing today?”
“Good, and you?”
“Excellent. Are you heading back home to Los Angeles?”
“I actually am heading back home to Florida.”
“Florida, wow! That’s a long trip. How cold does it get where you are?”
“Not very cold.”
(We continued the conversation for a minute or two).
“Is there anything I can get you to drink while we wait for the other passengers? I have guava, mango, or orange juice. I can get you anything else if you wish?”
“A glass of water would be great if possible.”
“Absolutely.”
She returned a couple seconds later,
“Your glass of water Mr. Tamboowala. Would you like a magazine or anything to read while we are here?”
“Nothing for me right now, thank you very much.”
“No problem Mr. Tamboowala. If you need anything else, just ask.”

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As the cabin started to fill up, I recognized a number of passengers that were with me on the flight from Mumbai. 13 passengers including me were from the Mumbai flight (a rather high number, I thought) while the gentleman next to me was continuing on from Delhi. Menus and headphones were handed out shortly after the cabin filled up. The same flight attendant was going around addressing each passenger by name and making sure they were comfortable. There was a five-year-old girl in 17A and I have to say, the flight attendant looked after her very well, above and beyond anything I have ever seen on CX or SQ! Drink orders were taken shortly before the doors were closed.
“Mr. Tamboowala, what would you like to drink after take off?”
“A Sprite if possible please.”
“Absolutely. If you need anything more, just let me know” was her reply with a wink.

The captain welcomed us onboard and informed us that our flying time today would be four hours and ten minutes. We were going to back up about ten minutes late due to some last minute passengers joining us, and once they were onboard the doors were closed and the safety demonstration was played. We taxied to the runway and sat at the threshold for close to ten minutes. Suddenly the “cabin crew, take you seats please” announcement was made and immediately following that, the engines were revved up full. The poor cabin crew was scrambling to their seats due to this lack of notice from the cockpit. They did, however, manage to sit down before we started rotating.

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The Flight: Once we were airborne, the entertainment system was fired up for the flight. The options were the same as the previous flight. I settled in by watching some short features on this flight. Hot towels were passed around a short while later with another beaming smile. Tablecloths were laid and the drinks were presented with the satay trolley right behind. Today’s menu consisted of the following items.

Malaysian Satay
Our Famous Charcoal Grilled Chicken and Beef Skewers
Topped with Spicy Peanut Sauce

* * * * * *

Appetizer
A Selection Compromising Peppered Mackerel in Soy Glaze,
Balic Salmon and California Roll

* * * * * *

Grilled Chicken
Dressed in a Lemon and Coriander Sauce
Or
Braised Kurau
In Ginger and Vinegar Stock with Fragrant Roasted Garlic
Or
Vegetable Parcels
Stir Fried Mixed Vegetables Chinese Style Wrapped in Lettuce
Served with Sweet Soy Sauce

* * * * * *

Vegetables and Accompaniments
BRAISED BROCOLLI WITH MUSHROOMS
FRIED EGGPLANT SZECHUAN STYLE
FRIED RICE WITH SPRING ONIONS
ROAST GARLIC

* * * * * *

Seasonal Fresh Fruits

Ice Cream

Bread Selection


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I opted for a mixture this time of the beef and chicken. The plate was placed on my tray table with the usual cold towel. Once again they were a pure delight to eat. The empty plates were collected and the main tray was brought around a short while later.

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I was also offered a choice of breads from the basket and garlic bread was my ultimate choice today. The sushi was good, maybe a bit on the big side as I had to break it into three pieces to eat. The fish was decent, but rather chunky and a bit chewy, especially the salmon. So much so that I had to quickly eat a piece of melon from the fruit bowl to get rid of the taste. The bowls were collected once I was done and the main course cart rolled around a few minutes later. Once again I was offered a choice from the trolley.
“Mr. Tamboowala, what would you like to eat today? We have chicken, seafood and vegetarian.”
“Just the chicken and rice for me please.”
“Absolutely Mr. Tamboowala. Are you sure you would not like anything more, such as potatoes or broccoli?”
I just could not look into those eyes and say no so I opted for some potatoes and the plate was delivered to me ever so graciously with a smile.
“Enjoy you meal Mr. Tamboowala.”

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The Asian fare did not disappoint me. The chicken was good as were the accompaniments. Once I was done with my main course, I chose to finish my fruit bowl, which still had some mango, and cantaloupe slices. Once that was done, the tray was collected and another cart rolled around.
“Mr. Tamboowala, we have some ice cream and fruits for you today.”
“Just some ice cream for me please.”
“Of course Mr. Tamboowala. How about some coffee or tea?”
“Coffee would be great, thanks.”

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Both items were placed on my tray table and I proceeded to open the ice cream. Today we had a container of Ben & Jerry’s – Berry Nice. I would have preferred a choice as I am not a big strawberry ice cream fan, but it was good. Airlines, like Cathay Pacific, offer a choice of different kinds of ice cream along with an actual dessert, something I think Malaysian should look into. However, the coffee was nice and strong and helped me stay awake for a few more hours.

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The tray was collected as the episode of Friends was ending. Once that was done, I opted to watch “It’s Good to be Donald Trump.” It at least helped pass the time. My next choice was an episode of “CSI” which lasted me till descent.

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Throughout the flight, the flight attendants were walking about checking up on passengers to make sure there was nothing more we needed. The glass of water that was on my armrest was constantly refilled without me ever having to ask. Each time they walked around the cabin, the crew had a smile on their face, which in turn made it seem as if they enjoyed serving us. They never forgot to smile at each passenger and constantly came around the cabin to check on us. At no time did I ever feel like a bother to the crew, they were truly great. Hot towels were passed around as descent was started. I was, however, not pleased to hear: “All passengers traveling to Los Angeles must deplane for security reasons.”

Arrival & Transit: Once we were docked at our gate, we were asked off. Transit passengers continuing to Los Angeles were handed a green transit card and ushered towards security. Once our hand bags were out through the x-ray machine, we took an escalator to the departure level. Once the formalities were done, I walked around the shops, which were rather bland and uninteresting. With an abundance of time, I decided I would head on over to the lounge area to see if I could get in.

I followed the signs and approached the China Airlines lounge, which handles Malaysia Airlines passengers according to the sign outside the door. I asked the China Airlines agent behind the counter if transit business class passengers were allowed in. She said no, but was rather apologetic about it, which was acceptable for me. I do, however, find this a little bit unacceptable on Malaysian’s part. Transit passengers should be able to sit in a lounge during transit. Hopefully this shall be looked at in the future as it is not fun airport to hang around.

I headed back towards the main terminal and walked around while spotting an abundance of China Airlines widebodies heading all over the world. The only non China Airlines jet was the Thai 772 heading to Bangkok from Seoul. After walking the entire length of the terminal, I elected to just head on down to the gate, which was filling up fast as many transit passengers seemed rather bored with there being nothing to do. I have a feeling Stockholm will be a better transit point for me in the future.

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Malaysian 094
Taipei – Los Angeles
Boeing 747-4H6 (9M-MPQ – Kuala Lumpur)
Seat: 18K
Scheduled Departure Time: 21:15
Actual Departure Time: 22:35
Scheduled Arrival Time: 16:50
Actual Arrival Time: 17:55

BoardingBoarding was announced at 20:30 and I boarded through the separate First and Business Class jetway. Before I could get on the plane, I was randomly selected for a secondary bag search. Therefore I placed my laptop case on the desk and let them go through it. They then selected someone else from the line for a more thorough search. So while my bag was being poked and prodded, some poor guy was taking of his shoes and socks. For a moment I thought I was already in LA.

I was greeted at the door by a smiling flight attendant who pointed me to the back with an “I assume you know where you seat is by now.” I reached good old 18K, stored my now invaded laptop case and sat down. Once the entire cabin was full again, a flight attendant came around with tray of water, guava and orange juice. Amenity kits were passed around and the doors were shut at exactly 21:15. Then the inevitable happened, a cockpit announcement.
“Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain. I would like to welcome you onboard this Malaysian flight to Los Angeles. However I regret to inform you that we are not done with all our paperwork so we shall be slightly delayed. I apologize for the inconvenience.”

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So the crew went about handing out the customary US immigration and customs forms. Since we were on ground, I opted to pull my tray table out and fill them in. As I got up to get my bag from the overhead bin, I heard the front cargo door rumbling open along with all the ground crew armed with loading and unloading equipment. Something was definitely amiss here. A few minutes later the captain came back on the PA.
“I am afraid the ground crew has found a problem with the cargo calculations. Therefore they are going to have to shift some cargo from the front hold to the back hold and vice versa. I expect this to take over an hour. So please, sit back and relax. I shall talk to you once again when we are ready to head on out.”

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The pictures above show exactly what the wait was like. The first one is around 21:15 when the China Airlines A330 arrived. The second and third pictures were taken around 22:15 when the China Airlines A330 was departing. You can see all the Malaysian cargo pallets out in the second picture and the ground staff out and about in the third. Eventually 22:35 came, and we pushed back over an hour and 15 minutes late. After a short five-minute taxi, the crew was ordered to take their seats and we started rolling down the runway for the Trans-Pacific crossing.

The Flight: Once airborne, the PTV’s were turned on and for some reason unbeknownst to me, I opted to watch “Vanity Fair.” Hot towels were first passed around and the table linens were placed. Five minutes later, the drink cart was brought out and I was asked what I would like to drink. A glass of Pepsi was handed to me followed by the can and an “enjoy Mr. Tamboowala.”
The menu for dinner today:

Appetizer
Featuring Crab and Avocado Salad,
Smoked Halibut and Salmon Complemented with Mango Mayonnaise

* * * * * *

Pan-fried Salmon
with a Fragrant Black Bean Sauce
Complemented with Steamed Rice
Chinese Cabbage and Carrots
Or
Chicken Kurma
An exotic Indian Dish
Featured with Yellow Rice and Spicy Okra
Or
E-fu Noodles with Seven Treasures
A Light Meal Choice of Seven Vegetables
Complemented with Noodles

* * * * * *

Hazelnut Mousse
with Vanilla Sauce

Bread Selection


A short while later the dinner cart came down the aisle, pushed by one of the stewards.
“Mr. Tamboowala, what would you like to have for supper today? We have fish, chicken and noodles.”
“The noodles please.”
“Of course sir.”
A tray was handed to me with a glass of water. Interestingly enough, dinner was the only meal that was pre-plated and served on one tray. I also noticed the absence of the delicious satays.

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The appetizer was alright, not that good and was rather high on the fishy taste and smell. The lime helped the poor taste part a bit.

The noodles were excellent though as they were not overcooked and full of flavor. The hazelnut mousse was something that I was not too keen on. I just pushed the mousse aside and had the cake and vanilla sauce from the bottom. That part was good, but I really wish it had been plain chocolate or vanilla mousse instead of something containing nuts. Sometimes simplicity is the key. Regardless it was a very good meal and I did notice a number of passengers devour the mousse outright, so maybe it just had something to do with my taste preferences.

The tray was collected and I opted for a nice cup of hot coffee. I was first handed the customary glass of water followed by the piping hot coffee.

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Once everything was cleared, the lights were turned off and the crew came around asking everyone to lower their window shades, I complied much to my dismay. I continued watching “Vanity Fair” which seemed to drag on forever. My glass of water was constantly refilled as the cabin crew was walking around every fifteen minutes with a bottle of water. Once the movie was done, I put the seat in full recline and decided to try and snooze. Unfortunately, it was not the best decision as we hit some turbulence. It is rather hard to sleep when you are continuously being bounced around like a ball. Then it came to a head with, “cabin crew take you seats.” I don’t know exactly what happened, but we were manhandled by some terrifying force of nature. Overhead bins were opening, things were crashing in the galley, and I had to hold on to my glass of water otherwise my pants would have been wearing it. This lasted a good 30 minutes before the seatbelt sign pinged and the crew was up cleaning the mess.

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Photo © Anosh Tamboowala


I pulled out my PTV and turned on the music videos as I was now wide-awake and had no intention of trying to sleep. A flight attendant came over to me and asked if I would like anything to eat but I was rather stuffed and I had a dinner engagement in Los Angeles, so I declined. For those that are interested, this was the snack option today.

Skysnax

In between the meal services,
a selection of filled rolls, cheese and crackers,
fresh fruits ands chocolates
are available for your enjoyment

However, if you wish to have a hot snack,
savor our specially prepared instant noodles
with a choice of condiments



MyAviation.net photo:
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Photo © Anosh Tamboowala



MyAviation.net photo:
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Photo © Anosh Tamboowala


The sun started to rise outside so I opted to take a few picture while making sure I did not blind any of my fellow passengers by opening the window shade. Once I had snapped a few, I decided to close the shade, put my seat back with a pillow behind my head and try to sleep with the music videos playing.

I woke up just as the lights were turned on for breakfast. Hot towels were passed around first, which felt rather refreshing at this point in time. I decided I’d watch a movie during breakfast but the choices were rather bland now. I did not want to see “Taxi” as that would be the movie on my Los Angeles – Newark flight tomorrow. So I decided to watch “Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.” All I can say is 30 minutes was more than enough! I switched to “Without a Paddle,” something I had already seen but thought was relatively funny.

The standard purple table linens were placed on everyone’s tray table. The brunch menu for today was:

Health Drink

* * * * * *

Fresh Fruit Juices

* * * * * *

Seasonal Fresh Fruits

* * * * * *

Spanish Omelette
Filled with Tomato, Onion and Peppers
Accompanied by Chicken Patties
Or
Sweet and Sour Fish
Fillet of Fish, Stir-fried with a Chinese Sweet and Sour Sauce
Or
Indian Vegetarian Choice
Aloo ka Bharta Complemented with Whole wheat Chapattis

* * * * * *

Vegetables and Accompaniments
SAUTEED MIXED MUSHROOMS
TOMATO WITH HERBS
ALMOND POTATOES
STRI FREIED EGG NOODLES

* * * * * *

Mixed berries tartlet

Bakery Selection

Jam, Marmalade or Honey

MyAviation.net photo:
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Photo © Anosh Tamboowala


The tray was handed to me by Katherine who still looked as fresh as ever, even after such a long flight, she was still all smiles when she asked what I wanted to drink and I selected apple juice. A breadbasket was offered and I decided upon my normal airplane breakfast bread, a croissant. I did find it surprising that the tray had strawberry jam and marmalade already on it.

MyAviation.net photo:
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Photo © Anosh Tamboowala


The fruit bowl today consisted of three apple slices, two orange slices, one melon and one papaya. They were rather fresh and delicious. The croissant was soft and hot, just the way I like it and the strawberry jam went very well with it. Eventually the fruit bowl was collected and the main course trolley was rolled down the aisle by Katherine with a beaming smile.
“Mr. Tamboowala, what would you like to have for breakfast? We have an omelet, some Asian fish and an Indian bread dish.”
“I’ll have the omelet please.”
“Certainly. Would you like all the usual accompaniments?”
“Yes please.”

MyAviation.net photo:
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Photo © Anosh Tamboowala



MyAviation.net photo:
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Photo © Anosh Tamboowala


The plate was handed to me with a smile and an “enjoy.” Unfortunately, I did not as it was a culinary disaster. The eggs were like rubber and had neither filling nor taste. The chicken patty was rather chewy and chemical tasting. The potatoes were cold and to top it off, had a rubbery texture. The main course was the ultimate gastronomical nightmare. I had to eat the tartlet to get the foul taste out of my mouth. At least the tartlet was good, but I am sure anything would seem that way after that atrocious main course. The tray was collected and a cup of coffee was brought over as per my request. After thinking about it, I really should have just asked for something from the “Skysnax” menu instead. Those noodles really sounded good after this meal.

MyAviation.net photo:
Click here for bigger photo!
Photo © Anosh Tamboowala


Once breakfast was done, a video was shown on the main screen welcoming us to the United States of America with the head of Homeland Security saying a few words. I guess there really is no better way to be welcomed home. Hot towels were passed around and descent started shortly after. I decided to head on over for a quick visit to bathroom as it is impossible to know how long my wait at immigration was going to be.

MyAviation.net photo:
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Photo © Anosh Tamboowala


As both lavatories were occupied, the crew welcomed me into the galley between doors 2L and 2R. I started chatting with the flight attendants about their travels and life in general when all of a sudden we became weightless. I grabbed the rail by the sink while one of the poor girls was thrown into the crew seat. Katherine let out a yelp and clung to the upper deck stairs with both arms. As expected, California had some pretty bad weather and we had just flown through some of it.
“Mr. Tamboowala, please return to your seat immediately!”
As I was walking or rather wobbling back to my seat, a loud voice came over the P/A. “Cabin crew take your seats immediately.”
Once I sat down, we dipped, accelerated, decelerated, jumped, and shook, for quite some time. Eventually it stopped once we broke out of the thick clouds.

Arrival: As it was pitch black the view was nothing extraordinary. We touched down smoothly and took a good 15 minutes to taxi to our gate. We passed a large number of international carriers parked at the satellite terminal while taxing in, which helped pass the time. We approached our section of Tom Bradley and as usual had to be towed in. We stopped right in front of an American 777 bound for Heathrow. Towing took a good ten minutes today, as we had to wait for a tug according to our captain.

Once we were docked, the local time had become 18:15 and I was almost certain Charles, (CMK10) was going to be pretty ticked off at me arriving this late (his scheduled inbound from SFO was at 5:30 PM). As we disembarked, the crew were smiling and wishing everyone a pleasant stay in the United States. I thanked Katherine for a great flight to which she smiled and said, “thanks for letting me know.” We all commenced the usual marathon walk to immigration, which was rather empty at this time of day. I don’t think I have ever landed at TBI without at least 700 passengers in line.

My immigration officer today was a rather cheery old man, who for some reason started talking to me about “Harry Potter” because I went to an aeronautical university. All I can say is thank God I had watched the movies, otherwise who knows what could have happened. He stamped my passport with a “welcome back.”

Today we were using Belt Number 3 and when I approached it, there were bags already rolling around. My bag appeared about five minutes later and I was on my way towards customs. I took the shorter line behind a Spanish lady who looked a little ticked off.
Officer: “No bags today madam?”
Lady: “No, Alaska Airlines lost all my bags!”
The officer just smiled and waved her through and started laughing as I approached him. He asked me where I was coming from and I said India.
Officer: “You’re coming from India and you only have one bag?”
Me: “I like to travel light.”
Officer: “Sure looks that way. Go ahead.”

I walked out and met Charles where we exchanged greetings. Once the standard commentary was done, we headed to the phone area to call our Double Tree shuttle bus. Of course I had less than 12 hours before I would be back at the airport but at least for the night I could exchange pleasant conversation and have a good meal and a good night’s sleep.

Verdict: I cannot believe it took me so long to fly this great airline. Everything about this airline is high quality and the attention to detail is amazing. Also, Kuala Lumpur is an excellent airport to transit at and I look forward to spending many more hours at this architectural masterpiece. The seats were not that great, but as new ones are on the way so I assume this will not be an issue in the future. As far as the food goes, maybe I was unlucky this time as I normally hear good things about MH catering. The satays did not disappoint but the rest of the meal needs to be looked at, especially the desserts and Western breakfast options.

I do have to say a very big thank you to all of my cabin crew on all three flights, as they were just amazing. The service level provided was of the highest caliber and I want to commend them all. I personally believe Malaysia’s cabin crews are better than my all time favorite carrier, Cathay Pacific. It is no wonder they have constantly won “Best Cabin Crew” for four years in a row. Congratulations Malaysia Airlines, you have gained a loyal customer for life. You truly did go beyond my expectations and I sincerely thank you for showing me why I love to fly and most of all, reminding me why flying is such a special experience!

Malaysian 195
Check In: 5 (30 minutes is too long. Economy passengers were being checked in faster)
Lounge: 6 (Not a very nice lounge, but it was at least better than the main terminal)
Boarding: 10 (Straight through with no problems)
Seat: 9 (Dated but fairly comfortable, could have used a bit more legroom)
Aircraft: 10 (In excellent condition)
Crew: 10 (Excellent service with a smile)
Meal: 7 (Slight bit disappointing but decent)
Entertainment: 10 (AVOD)

Kuala Lumpur Golden Club Lounge: 10 (More than I could ever ask for)

Malaysian 094 (KUL-TPE)
Boarding: 10 (Straight through with no problem once again)
Seat: 9 (Dated but fairly comfortable, could have used a bit more legroom)
Aircraft: 10 (In excellent condition)
Crew: 11 (Beyond my expectations)
Meal: 9 (Good but not great)
Entertainment: 10 (AVOD but lacking in movie choices)

Malaysian 094 (TPE-LAX)
Boarding: 10 (Separate jetway for F and C)
Seat: 9 (Dated but fairly comfortable, could have used a bit more legroom)
Aircraft: 10 (In excellent condition)
Crew: 11 (Amazing crew once again)
Meal: 5 (Supper was excellent but breakfast was awful)
Entertainment: 10 (AVOD but lacking in good movie choices)
Arrival: 10 (No problems here)

201/220 = .913

Malaysia scored a 91%


SR 103


User currently offlineMhodgson From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2002, 5047 posts, RR: 25
Reply 2, posted (9 years 7 months 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 18135 times:

Excellent report! Sounds like an amazing business class product.


No trees were harmed by this message. However, several million electrons were terribly inconvenienced
User currently offlineCathay Pacific From Australia, joined May 2000, 1864 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (9 years 7 months 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 18099 times:

Another excellent report, I always enjoy reading them...well done mate!~  Big grin


cathay pacific, now you're really flying
User currently offlineMrniji From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (9 years 7 months 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 18063 times:

Anosh, excellent report with great eye for the detail - I enjoyed a lot and tried to reconstruct your detailed meal experience  Big thumbs up - it shows and prooves again that Asian careers are beyond anything else - the friendliness is deeply embedded in that culture.. nice - since I haven't travelled MH yet, good to know that they seem to be in a league with my favorite TG, and with SQ


Quoting SR 103 (reply 0):
I headed out first trying to beat the rest of the crowd



No no no, don't tell me, you were amongst those running for being the first  Big thumbs up


User currently offlineRyanair!!! From Australia, joined Mar 2002, 4755 posts, RR: 26
Reply 5, posted (9 years 7 months 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 17911 times:

Glad to hear you enjoyed MAS. I guess my recommendations didn't go down the drain eh? Hmm... why did you choose row 18 on the 744? The Upper Deck area would have offered a more comfy environment.


Welcome to my starry one world alliance, a team in the sky!
User currently offlineAirWales From UK - Wales, joined Oct 2004, 453 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (9 years 7 months 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 17817 times:

great report - doubt I will ever get that far up the front of the plane so its good to read about others doing it!!

User currently offlineKL808 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1584 posts, RR: 2
Reply 7, posted (9 years 7 months 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 17716 times:

Indeed a great report.

I always liked MH its been more than 12 years when I flew them last. MNL-BKI-KUL-ZRH-AMS. That was also in Business class and was worth every penny. They do have great service.

Drew



AMS-LAX-MNL
User currently offlineSpeedbird2025 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (9 years 7 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 17692 times:

What a great report Anosh!! Like your CO one as well.

--Nathan


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1920 posts, RR: 9
Reply 9, posted (9 years 7 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17612 times:

Thanks for another excellent report SR103!

MH is a pretty good carrier and your comments about the food, I really agree, but my sample is a late night LAX-TPE nonstop. I feel that the food is nothing special, but I actually like the satays service. I am surprised that none is offered on the TPE-LAX segment. However, I guess most passengers want to sleep, and the meal should be as simple as possible. Nevertheless, you give an excellent description of the main meals... however, I like the trolley service -- not too many airlines retain this kind of service now.

MH actually arrives at a pretty good time -- right after the European rush and before the last batch of Asia arrival (SQ, CI, BR all arrived after 7pm)...

Anyway, thanks for a great report!

Thanks,
Carfield


User currently offlineKaran69 From India, joined Oct 2004, 2889 posts, RR: 17
Reply 10, posted (9 years 7 months 20 hours ago) and read 17337 times:

Nice trip report Anoosh, i had taken a simialr flight in 2001, it was MHs inaugral service from BOM. We were indeed treated very well considering we were in economy class.
The only diff being i went BOM-KUL-NRT-LAX and on the way back via TPE---where unfortunately they lost my baggage.

Good report,well done


User currently offlineSR 103 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1740 posts, RR: 38
Reply 11, posted (9 years 7 months 1 hour ago) and read 17027 times:

Thanks for the comments, glad all of you are enjoying the report

Quoting Mrniji (reply 4):
No no no, don't tell me, you were amongst those running for being the first


LOL. No, I don't run. Just walk briskly towards the counters without pushing and shoving like a few of our countrymen do.

Quoting Ryanair!!! (reply 5):
Glad to hear you enjoyed MAS. I guess my recommendations didn't go down the drain eh? Hmm... why did you choose row 18 on the 744? The Upper Deck area would have offered a more comfy environment.


After all your trip reports, I really had to see if they were as good as you said.  Big grin
As far as row 18, I had issues getting the exit row on the upper deck, so I thought I might as well stick with the lower deck. Besides, I have flown the upper deck so much; I figured I needed a change.  Smile

SR 103


User currently offlineINNflight From Switzerland, joined Apr 2004, 3766 posts, RR: 59
Reply 12, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 16975 times:

Thanks for the great report, the photos made it even more lovely to read!
Hope to hear more from you, in the future!

BTW: Why didn't you fly Mumbai - Europe - Florida? Would have been a lot shorter, wouldn't it?  Smile

Florian



Jet Visuals
User currently offlineAT502B From South Africa, joined Dec 2004, 347 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 16906 times:

Great report Big grin
I hope to try Malaysia Airlines soon, they look great



I love the smell of jet fuel in the morning.
User currently offlineSR 103 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1740 posts, RR: 38
Reply 14, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day ago) and read 16696 times:

Quoting INNflight (reply 12):
BTW: Why didn't you fly Mumbai - Europe - Florida? Would have been a lot shorter, wouldn't it?


I normally fly via Europe and have been doing so since 2002. I decided I needed a change from the routine KL/NW flights I take. When I looked up the fare to fly across the Pacific, it actually turned out to be cheaper than flying via AMS. This was too good of a deal to let go, so I opted to fly MH and experience some "legendary" service. Besides, I was in no immediate hurry to get back to school; this schedule suited me just fine.

SR 103


User currently offlineChrisrad From Australia, joined Dec 2000, 1069 posts, RR: 8
Reply 15, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day ago) and read 16688 times:

What a fantastic, concise and in depth flight review you have written. Glad you enjoyed Malaysia Airlines they are my favourite. Looking forward to my RTW trip with them this year


Welcome aboard Malaysia Airlines! Winner of Best Cabin Staff 2001,2002,2003,2004,2007,2009,2012
User currently offlineLufthansa747 From Philippines, joined May 1999, 3201 posts, RR: 42
Reply 16, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 16567 times:

Great report again Anosh! I had been waiting for this one. The KUL lounges are indeed superb as you said - if you ever get to check out the F class side, go for it. I have been only to Wing/Pier C class, but the MH F lounge beats the heck out of those two.

Strange about this Taipei lounge thing - I got no access as a TG C pax either. And that old terminal is a dump, only comparable one I've been to would be NAIA 1.

Keep up those great reports,

Lari



Air Asia Super Elite, Cebu Pacific Titanium
User currently offlineMAS777 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 1999, 2935 posts, RR: 6
Reply 17, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 16445 times:

MAS is consistently brilliant in the cabin crew department. I last flew with them AMS-KUL and then on to SIN a few days later. By chance the stewardess who served me from AMS-KUL was on the same flight down to Singapore and she tapped me on the shoulder as I made my way to my seat and wished me - 'you're not following me are you, Dr X (!)'

Great genuine friendly service - I was in Economy from AMS-KUL (as the flight was full - but I noted that she called me by name when she took my coat and checked my boarding pass) but in First on the Singapore leg but the service on each sector was better than First on most other carriers I had been on. She also checked (the pax list) to see that I was travelling with my family on this sector and went over to their seats to say hello and that she had served me on the AMS-KUL flight a few days back and wished us a good holiday in Singapore.

That friendly welcome on the KUL-SIN just says it all really...

I have never looked back...


User currently offlineMhodgson From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2002, 5047 posts, RR: 25
Reply 18, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 16165 times:

As a post-script to my last comment, I am now flying MH in summer, MAN-KUL-SYD/MEL-KUL-PNG-KUL-MAN Big grin

All the reports seem excellent, so it should be great!



No trees were harmed by this message. However, several million electrons were terribly inconvenienced
User currently offlinePers From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 72 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 16105 times:

I am flying LAX - KUL - CPT in mid June this year. We have tickets in Business class. You guys think it is worth upgrading to F at the price of $4,200.00 for two people?

I am very impressed by this J class report as is. So maybe F should be absolutely fantastic...


User currently offlineSllevin From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 3376 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 15990 times:

I've spent a lot of time on MH flights this year. I actually find their "old" J seat to be the most comfortable seat around, escept for the short legrest!

The only thing better than the Golden Club portion of the lounge at the Satellite is the First Class side!  Smile

BTW, if you are going to fly MH, you probably want to switch to FD and risk AF mucking it all up later. You get EQM for MH on FD. Not to mention FD gives 100% bonuses for business class travel.

If I'd been smarter (and less chicken about AF) I'd have jumped to FD.

Steve


User currently offlineMAS A330 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 15871 times:

I am flying LAX - KUL - CPT in mid June this year. We have tickets in Business class. You guys think it is worth upgrading to F at the price of $4,200.00 for two people?

I am very impressed by this J class report as is. So maybe F should be absolutely fantastic...


Pers, you can't go wrong service wise. i have flown with them in both F and J and all i can say is seat-wise i prefer J. maybe F has a little more room and better meals, but i prefer the curent seats they have in J. but, thats comparing their current interiors, if you are lucky to get the new interiors, with the new F seat, i say give it a shot!

enjoy your flight.


User currently offlineMAS777 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 1999, 2935 posts, RR: 6
Reply 22, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 15770 times:

KLMs FD and MAS flights certainly work very well together for European travellers. I think North American residents have to join NWA Worldperks but the perks there are not as good with MAS miles.

The First Class lounge at KUL is certainly one of the best I have been to - the spa was not much to write home about but certainly a nice touch for an airport lounge. Food was excellent with free flowing champagne. I think I ate and drank more than my airfare there!


User currently offlineSabena332 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 15371 times:

Hi Anosh,

This is another masterpiece of a trip report, I needed approximately half an hour to read it and to look at the pictures. It is always great to see such a detailed report here, thank you very much for your efforts!

Malaysia's service in Golden Club Class sounds and looks awesome, seems that they also belong to the league of the "high quality airlines of Asia". I will definitely consider to fly on them when I will go to Asia next time, futhermore is KUL a nice transfer airport alternative to SIN, BKK and HKG.

Patrick


User currently offlineSR 103 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1740 posts, RR: 38
Reply 24, posted (9 years 6 months 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 15293 times:

Thanks for the comments, glad you all enjoyed reading it.

Quoting Lufthansa747 (reply 16):
The KUL lounges are indeed superb as you said - if you ever get to check out the F class side, go for it. I have been only to Wing/Pier C class, but the MH F lounge beats the heck out of those two.


Really? I guess I shall have to try it out. Beating "The Wing" is no easy task.

Quoting Lufthansa747 (reply 16):
Strange about this Taipei lounge thing - I got no access as a TG C pax either. And that old terminal is a dump, only comparable one I've been to would be NAIA 1.


You are absolutely right, it reminded me of MNL quite a bit. I do wonder why we do not get lounge access in TPE. It really is a downside as flying through this airport is not a very pleasant experience.

Quoting Pers (reply 19):
I am flying LAX - KUL - CPT in mid June this year. We have tickets in Business class. You guys think it is worth upgrading to F at the price of $4,200.00 for two people?


It really depends on what you are looking for. As MAS A330 said, there is nothing wrong with J at all, well maybe the catering needs to be looked at. I however am not sure if spending the extra amount of money is worth it unless you can guarantee the aircraft will have the new F cabin. The old one reminds me a lot of current Business Class seats on a few competitors. I personally would probably hold off on F till the new seats are in, but it really is your call.

Quoting Sllevin (reply 20):
I've spent a lot of time on MH flights this year. I actually find their "old" J seat to be the most comfortable seat around, escept for the short legrest!


Could not agree with you more. The seats are definitely cushy and nice but that legrest is a major down side.

Quoting Sllevin (reply 20):
The only thing better than the Golden Club portion of the lounge at the Satellite is the First Class side!


Wow, you guys are really pushing this First Class lounge. I guess I really got to try it out next time I am in KUL.

Quoting Sllevin (reply 20):
BTW, if you are going to fly MH, you probably want to switch to FD and risk AF mucking it all up later. You get EQM for MH on FD. Not to mention FD gives 100% bonuses for business class travel.


I already did two weeks before my flight.  Big grin I changed my Elite status over from NW to KL. If you read my CO TR, you'll see I mentioned this in there.

Quoting Sllevin (reply 20):
If I'd been smarter (and less chicken about AF) I'd have jumped to FD.


Its never too late!

Quoting MAS777 (reply 22):
KLMs FD and MAS flights certainly work very well together for European travellers. I think North American residents have to join NWA Worldperks but the perks there are not as good with MAS miles.


You are right, all North American residents have to join WorldPerks. I however have a valid address in India, which is Flying Dutchman territory, so I am lucky.

Quoting Sabena332 (reply 23):
seems that they also belong to the league of the "high quality airlines of Asia".


They jumped straight to number two on my list. They still can't beat CX in overall product in my opinion, but they certainly came darn close to it. Their cabin crew definately surpassed CX, SQ, and TG in my opinion though.

SR 103


25 Lufthansa747 : The MAS F side has a restaurant set-up with a full buffet, table linens, crystal glasses, F tableware, champagne etc. Also very spacious and it offer
26 Pers : Looking at the comments about the service and the First class lounge in KUL, I think I am going to have us upgraded to FC, since it really seems worth
27 Lufthansa747 : Yes, they have some sleeping rooms.
28 Pers : Sorry, I miscalculated. The whole trip is well over 30 hours long. Not the flying time itself. Thank you Lufthansa747 for your reply!
29 SR 103 : You should call and check with MH first if they are willing to give you a STPC. It is basically a hotel room for your stop over. As you can see above
30 Pers : Yesterday I upgraded our tickets from Business to First. I understand that when we get to KUL and there is bedroom availability within the F lounge (o
31 Post contains images UAalltheway : Awesome trip report! thanks
32 Post contains images Sllevin : If you have that much time on your hands, you really owe it to yourself to go to KL itself. The Petronas Towers are two of the most beautiful and eleg
33 Post contains images SR 103 : Thats some real good news. Definitely keep us posted about the outcome. I am really interested in this, in case I want to fly MH somewhere soon again
34 Pers : Thanks for all your comments. I am surely going to take them all into account when we go. Another question and I really hope you guys can help. I have
35 Cmk10 : You just remember what I used to fly in there when you're annoyed about a slightly delay or no lounge access. However, it was great to see you in LA,
36 Zone1 : Wow, awesome report. The pictures were great. MH will be a great additon to SkyTeam!
37 JetHost : Wow cool report, i enjoyed reading it!
38 BA380 : awesome report the food looks delectable! will have to consider these guys in the future!
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