Posts: 43
Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 8:40 pm

JFK-YVR-JFK On CX In J (w/pics)

Sun Aug 23, 2009 1:09 am

Cathay Pacific has been one of my favorite airlines to fly. I usually fly them to Asia even if it cost more than US carriers. Last year, I got to try their new economy seats on a trip to BKK. This year, I wanted to visit Canada, Vancouver to be exact. I also planed to visit Alaska on a cruise. When doing research, I noticed that CX was the cheapest to Vancouver and one of the few nonstops from New York. I also realized that I had many miles with CX that I could use to upgrade. I used the miles but had to pay a higher fare.

Note: I would have posted more pictures on the outbound flight but my camera was stolen.
Cathay Pacific Airways CX889, July 31st, 2009

John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) to Vancouver International Airport (YVR)
Gate- 6
Seat- 19A (business)
Departure (Scheduled/Actual): 22:40/22:55
Arrival (Scheduled/Actual): 1:30(+1 day)/1:20(+1 day)
Aircraft- B777-300ER

Terminal 7 at JFK is one of the best at JFK, but that is not saying much. This was the first time I used the premium check-in at this terminal. Check-in was pretty quick as there were no lines. I was issued my ticket and a lounge invitation to the British Airways Terraces Lounge. The woman at check-in notified me that the flight was running ten minutes late, which gave me more time in the lounge.

The British Airways Terraces Lounge was good but not as good as the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse in London, which I recently visited. There were instant noodles, drinks, and small cookies, but I was there just to use the free Wi-Fi and relax. Soon after, it was time to board.

The flight was completely full in all classes. Just like previous flights with CX, the service was great. A senior purser in purple who guided me to the right aisle greeted me. Confirming other trip reports’ descriptions of service, CX flight attendants seem rushed in preparation. No one took drink orders or greeted passengers, as they scrambled around the galley. Granted, I don’t blame them. I think some of the flight attendants were Vancouver based. As doors closed, flight attendants passed drinks such as water, orange juice, and champagne. Soon after take off, the in-flight service manager greeted everyone by surname, wished him or her a pleasant flight, and thanked him or her for flying CX. In addition, menus, amenity kits, Canadian Landing Cards, and water bottles were passed out. The choices on the menu were:

Mesclun salad with pan-seared scallops, olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette

Main Courses-
Stir-fried prawns with XO sauce, egg fried rice and mixed vegetables
Pan-seared beef tenderloin with cipollini onion sauce, crispy potatoes, sautéed spinach and young carrots
Asparagus risotto with red pepper confit

Light Option-
Shrimp wontons in noodle soup

Cheese and Dessert-
Brie, Manchego, Taleggio
Fresh seasonal fruit
Chocolate banana cake with raspberry coulis

Tea and Coffee


Braised beef brisket in noodle soup
Ice cream (Haagen-Dazs)

I chose the beef option. In my opinion, it was good, but not great, a bit tough. My companions choice the Chinese option and said that it was excellent. In addition, I ordered an Oriental Breeze from the drinks menu. I thought it was good but a little bit sweet. After meal service, flight attendants went around asking for duty free orders. I just turned on StudioCX and watched a couple of programs. I saw that many people just turned their seats into the bed. Like the Virgin Atlantic Upper Class Suite, it is a little bit awkward to sit in. In addition, the seat is narrower than Virgin’s. However, I enjoyed the big PTV and more storage areas. We soon landed in Vancouver and flight attendants still had a smile on even in the wee hours of the morning. Customs were quick since we were the only flight operating at the hour.

Cathay Pacific Airways CX888, August 10th, 2009
Vancouver International Airport (YVR) to John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)
Gate- 71
Seat- 19A (business)
Departure (Scheduled/Actual): 22:30/22:25
Arrival (Scheduled/Actual): 6:55(+1 day)/6:25(+1 day)
Aircraft- B777-300ER

Vancouver Airport in my opinion is one of the best in North America, very aesthetically pretty and user friendly. Yet, my trip to the city was overshadowed by the theft.

At the airport, I was one of the first at the check-in counters as it was not open yet. When the check-in staff prepared their desks, one agent thought my family and I were flying economy and stated that we were in the wrong line. I had to correct him and he walked away. Check-in was quick however the agent serving us only wanted to give my family only four passes to the lounge (I was traveling with 5 people). I begged her and told her my theft story. She then gave us all passes.

The CX lounge at YVR is like a mini “Wing” or “Pier.” There was hot dim sum, instant noodles, numerous magazines, and drinks. There was a lot of space and good lighting. Overall, it was a great lounge that was better than the BA lounge at JFK, but a bit cramped. Soon after, it was time to board.

Since CX888 is a continuation flight from HKG, many people seemed like they came from Asia. There were students from Thailand and many families from China. When I boarded, the senior purser greeted me. I think she was South African, as I did not know that CX hired South African flight attendants. However, the flight attendants seemed much younger than the flight going to YVR. Again, the flight attendants seemed rushed. I believe I saw one flight attendant bump into another flight attendant that was holding drinks. I noticed that the captain was the same captain as the flight going.

Once airborne, flight attendants passed out menus, amenity kits, bottles of water, and US customs forms. Also, flight attendants took drink orders for which I ordered a Cathay Delight. I thought it was better than the Oriental Breeze. At the same time, the in-flight service manager came around introducing herself and wishing everyone a pleasant flight. The menu choices were as follows:

Seasonal salad with Gravlax salmon, sun-dried tomato and oregano vinaigrette

Main Courses-
Prawn butterfly wrapped with bean curd skin, egg fried rice with spring onion, broccoli, carrot and mushrooms
Pan-roasted chicken with truffle red bliss mash potato, broccolini, honey glazed carrots and peppers
Penne pasta with roasted red pepper sauce, kalamata olives, cherry tomatoes, asparagus and Parmesan cheese

Light Choice-
Wontons in noodle soup

Cheese and Dessert-
Cheese selection
Fresh seasonal fruit
Fresh fruit flan

Tea and Coffee


Ice cream (Haagen-Dazs)

I chose the prawn choice this time. I thought it was well and better than the western option. Because it was a red eye flight, many people skipped the meal service and went straight to sleep. I joined them after meal service.

About thirty minutes before arrival, the captain stated that we would arrive early than scheduled. I thought that since we were approaching JFK, there would be a small breakfast. The small breakfast consisted of a hot towel and a choice of water or orange juice. I was a little disappointed as I was a little bit hungry and wanted to see what breakfast was like on CX. We landed quickly and went through customs and immigration quickly as well.

Cathay Pacific’s business class in my opinion was pretty good. However, speaking for myself, the seat seems too narrow and seems claustrophobic with the high walls. I understand that CX has to differentiate J class and F class for business purposes. However, the great service made up for the seats. In addition, I liked the huge PTV with one of my favorite systems in the sky, StudioCX. On the other hand, there was a little inconsistency in service on both ways. Otherwise, I anticipate flying CX on a longer route in business in the future. I welcome questions, comments, or concerns. Thank you.


Sign to CX Lounge

CX Lounge

Outside the lounge

YVR at night

Plane to JFK

In the J seat

J cabin

Cathay Delight with roasted nuts

Garlic Bread


Prawn main
After sex and drugs comes rock and roll
Posts: 88
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 1:37 am

RE: JFK-YVR-JFK On CX In J (w/pics)

Sun Aug 23, 2009 6:15 pm

Hi there Caio86!

Very nice trip report!

The Airport fountain display is just amazing by the way!

Only wished your TR would've been longer  Wink

Were the seats OK? ....I've heard a number of people complaining about the impression of narrowniss and clautrophobia they may cause.


Posts: 43
Joined: Sat May 19, 2007 8:40 pm

RE: JFK-YVR-JFK On CX In J (w/pics)

Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:48 pm

The seats were good and bad. I've been on Virgin Atlantic's Upper Class Suite and it is more narrow than it. Also, the walls are high. However, there is a bigger screen and more areas to place cups and other items.

In addition, I forgot to mention one thing in the TR. The headphones were great, but the problem was that it was not in a plastic bag. It was just wrapped behind the seat plugged into the seat already. I would have liked it if it was in a bag or a note that it was sanitized. Otherwise, the service was great and the food was excellent.
After sex and drugs comes rock and roll
Posts: 249
Joined: Sun Sep 10, 2006 7:51 pm

RE: JFK-YVR-JFK On CX In J (w/pics)

Tue Aug 25, 2009 2:30 am

Nice report, shame you couldn't take any pictures on the outbound....where was your camera stolen?
Thanks for posting.

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