SYDNEY TO CHRISTCHURCH
DECEMBER 07, 2009
DEPARTURE: ON TIME (1045)
ARRIVAL: ON TIME (1535)
LOAD: F: 30%, J: 70%, Y: 100%
Hi Fellow A-Netters.
This is about my 10th trip report.
I know there has been many TR
's regarding EK
on this board, and this probably isn't going to be anything new for any of you, but I enjoy writing them and letting people who don't get the opportunity to travel as much as I do with my job a chance to see what different airlines are like to fly with.
I wasn't going to do a TR
for this sector, as I was booked in Y class. But I didn't end up sitting in Y class as it turns out!
I had checked in online for the flight, and my SEQ NO was #1, which meant I was first to check in. I got to the airport and, to my dismay, the lines at check-in were horrendous. This was 2.5 hours before the flight too, so quite surprising that everyone there turned up so early!
However, at the end on the check-in rows, I saw that there was an "Internet Check-In Bag Drop" desk with one person at it. I made my way to the counter and was served in about 1 minute flat! (Why don't "the masses" do internet check-in? Do they not know about it? It's just soooo much easier!)
Anyway, the check-in agent was lovely and, as I work in the travel industry, we just started chatting about various things. As I really didn't have any appointments scheduled in CHC
until the following afternoon, I thought I might try and make some money and offer myself to be "bumped" to the following day's flight.
She said that EK
's policy is to "upgrade, rather than bump", and then excused herself while she went and talked to the supervisor. She came back and then said: "As you have been very polite, and offered to help us out when the flight is oversold, we have put you in business class today!"
That's only the 3rd time I've been upgraded in my life, so needless to say I was super-happy!
I had always wanted to try EK
's business class, and even though SYD
was only a short sector, (3 hours), I would get to experience it in some form!
She handed me a boarding pass for seat 11A and wished me a pleasant journey.
It was nice being able to board through the Business Class boarding line, but the wait in the aerobridge was still the same as if I flew economy!
It's SO NICE being able to turn left as you walk into an aircraft instead of turning right!! Gotta love it! (My fare from SYD
was $99.00 plus taxes.... so about $176.00 AUD - very cheap! And even cheaper with the upgrade considered!)
Anyway, here is the J class seat. Very comfortable and would love to have spent longer in it than this short-ish flight!
And the legroom wasn't exactly bad either!!
The layout on the cabin of the 777 is spacious and comfortable. There are divider screens that you can electronically put up if you don't want to see your neighbour. Luckily, the seat next to me was free for the entire flight.
The personal TV
screen was very large and had great picture quality. It was nice that they actually turned on the system prior to boarding so you could start watching a movie as soon as you sat down. (Just for the record, I watched "District 19" which was so bizarre, but really thought-provoking on many levels!) I'm not sure if it's an EK
thing, or they only do it in the premium classes, but turning on the IFE prior to take-off is something that SQ
defintiely don't do in Y class!)
It's also nice to have the flight information and aircraft registration provided on the screen as well.
It's funny the things you notice when you fly in an usual seat. Normally I sit at the back or over the wing as I'm in Y class, but being towards the front in J, I really noticed how big the engines really are on the EK
There was lots of reading material in the seat pocket. (I thought EK
were getting rid of this and making it part of the IFE so as to save weight?) Interestingly, they didn't have a paper-copy of the inflight duty-free catalogue, but you could shop using the ICE system).
The noise-cancelling headphones were excellent.
The crew looking after my section of the cabin was an English guy and a girl who was half-Polish and half-Swedish. The young lady was very friendly and charming. The guy who did 80% of the service in my cabin was professional and efficient, but his service and friendliness had no "warmth". It's not that he was rude or anything, but just seemed to do his job as if he was reading from a training handbook or something - there didn't seem to be any genuine warmth coming from him. Small point, but I'm big on service attitudes working in the industry myself.
Anyway, pre-take off champagne was offered as were scolding hot towels.
I paused my movie (yes, I could come back to it later!) and moved to the airshow for take-off. The "Google Maps" style is interesting and very detailed!!
I also took some photos of the aircraft we passed while taxiing out to runway 16 R.
(And sorry, but the "ONE WORLD" details on QF
aircraft make them look AWFUL!!)
By the way... was airline is ATI? I have never heard of them before - thanks if you can enlighten me!
We rolled straight on to runway 16 R and took off into a beautiful blue sky, heading out over Botany Bay and then turning left heading for The Land of the Long White Cloud.
(Love sitting next to those amazing RR
engines during take off!)
I then took the opportunity to take some photos of my seat. It has three pre-set positons - "Sitting", "Eating" and "Sleeping" - although you could alter the settings if you wanted to and make your own position. I thought the seat was very comfortable, and the in-built massage function was great! It would be awesome on a long flight to have that feature when you needed it.
I then took time to inspect the J class bathrooms. There was nothing too out of the ordinary in here, I found the "amenities" - toothbrushes, razors etc - quite tacky, and cheap-looking.
I found out later from the cabin crew that amenity kits are only handed out on overnight flights. Makes sense, I guess. (More faux wood in the bathroom - they love the faux wood look on EK
Back to my seat, and the menus and the New Zealand arrival forms were handed out.
(I'm not going to go through all the options in the menu - you can read that if you want to from the pics).
Drinks and nuts were served. Then the actual brunch itself. I opted for the Mixed Grill. It was very tasty except for the spinach, which tasted kind of.. well... weird. The fruit was fresh, (but why do they always say "SEASONAL fruit??!" I mean, would they serve "UNSEASONAL fruit?" Weird - and a tortology!
The lovely female cabin crew member in our section came over and asked me how everything was. We started chatting about the wine list (why, I don't know!) and she ended up bringing me a glass of each of the wines on the list - love that! Then a lovely cup of Arabic coffee followed with the Godiva chocolate, but which time, I was feeling more than happy!
The movie finished, and I had time to watch an episode of "The Simpsons" before landing.
(With another glass of the lovely Sav Blanc!)
Soon enough (and far too soon as far as I was concerned!) we started decending into Christchurch over the beautiful Alps on the western side of the South Island.
A few minutes before landing, the farming fields of the Canturbury Plains came into view, and the airshow feature showed that we were very close to our destination.
And then it was time to switch on the nose camera for landing.
The landing was very gentle! I am not sure how long the runway at CHC
is, but we seemed to pull up VERY quick with some very heavy braking involved.
I then took some shots of some local aircraft as we made our short journey to the gate.
We stopped gently at the gate right on time.
My final photo quite tickled my funny bone - the fire fighting equipment at CHC
- as long as it works!
It was a wonderful flight. Despite being short(ish) it certainly gave me a good idea of what J class in Emirates is all about. And yes, I would love to fly them again!
Thanks for taking the time to read my report!