win1290
Topic Author
Posts: 283
Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 4:38 pm

Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Thu Jul 05, 2012 7:01 pm

Hello and welcome to my trip report covering my flight home from London to Bangkok with Thai Airways. This is the return flight of THAI's Retro Boeing 747-400: BKK-LHR (by win1290 Apr 22 2012 in Trip Reports). Hope you enjoy!

Date: 23 June 2012
Airline: Thai Airways International
Flight: TG 917
Route: LHR-BKK
Aircraft: Airbus A340-600
Registration: HS-TNE

The journey began in Bristol where I was based for university. I took a Great Western train from Bristol Temple Meads to London Paddington which took around 1 hours and 45 minutes, then connecting to Heathrow Airport using Heathrow Express which got me to the airport in 15 minutes. I arrived at Heathrow terminal 3 at approximately 6pm, for my 9:30pm flight. As usual, TG check-in area is located in entrance D.

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TG ROP Programme advertisement

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There are 7 check-in counters altogether for TG: one for First Class, two for Business Class/*G and four for Economy Class. This flight I will be travelling with a friend of mine and both of us will be travelling Economy Class. So we went to an empty *G counter and handed our passports over to the agent. After a quick inspection, the agent said that as I have done an online check-in but my friend hasn’t, our check-in will be done separately. The check in was done very quick in more-or-less 5 minutes for both of us. We were very grateful that despite the total weight of our bags went over the limit, we were let through. Once we got our boarding passes, we asked the agent whether we could be moved to have seats together: I prefer a window seat and my friend she prefers an aisle seat. The agent replied that we had to go to the supervisor desk (located next to F counter) to ask for seat change. So off we went and asked, unfortunately there were no available pair. But the supervisor did make a note of our request and our seat numbers and said if a pair of seats becomes available, we would be let known at the boarding gate. We thanked the supervisor and headed to the security screening which was done in just less than 10 minutes.

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Some pictures post security check

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We headed to SAS London Lounge which is a designated lounge for TG passengers

Some pictures of the lounge: First floor

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View from the lounge

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As usual, I chose to go on the upper level.

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More photos of the lounge can be found on: Thai Airways A340-600: LHR-BKK (by win1290 Mar 28 2012 in Trip Reports). I found the lounge was good. The food selection was exactly the same as on my previous report, which was perfectly adequate. The shower facility was particularly great for us.

At 8:30pm, the boarding gate was shown in the screen, and 10 minutes later, we left the lounge for the gate 32.

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At the gate entrance, my friend went first and handed her boarding pass, and it beeped ‘green’ and she entered the waiting area. When it was my turn, I handed my boarding pass and the machine beeped and red light flashing. I was told that I got upgraded to Royal Silk, and was given a new boarding pass. I was very grateful for this, Thanks TG. Thought I must admit, I felt quite bad when telling my friend the news.

View from the gate. Sadly the view of our aircraft was quite restricted.

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Boarding call was made beginning with families travelling with small children and First Class and Business Class and Star Alliance Gold passengers, then followed by Economy Class passengers by row numbers starting from the back of the aircraft.

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At the aircraft door, we were greeted and welcomed aboard and were pointed to the correct aisle for our seats. When I stored my hand baggage and settled in my seat, the cabin crew came and offer a welcome drink, which I chose champagne, and a hot towel.

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Then a variety of Thai and English newspapers were offered as well as magazines. I picked Top Gear.

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When the aircraft door closed, the crew made a standard welcome announcement, then a welcome announcement from the cockpit, and safety demonstration was played.

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Unfortunately, I didn’t have a window seat  http://i1055.photobucket.com/albums/s515/win1290/June%202012%20London-Bangkok/DSCF7141.jpg

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Before took off, cabin crew came over to ask our meal options.

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Cabin light dimmed for take off

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The plane took off at around 9:50pm. After the seat belt sign was turned off, the in-flight manager made an announcement about the service routine on the flight: hot dinner serving in a moment and 1:30 hours before landing, breakfast will be served. Also the purser also advised passengers on the on-board duty free sales.

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In-flight entertainment and noise-cancelling headphones

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Menu (taken at home)

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Dinner started with drinks:

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Chicken Satay

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Another hot towel

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First Course: Pate de Foie Gras with Vegetable, Marinated Scallops, Fruit Chutney

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For the Main Course I chose: Thai Roast Chicken with Three Flavoured Sauce, Steamed Thai Hom Mali Rice, Mixed Vegetables

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Cheese and Fruits with Port wine

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Chocolate Indulgence, chocolate sauce

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During dinner, the captain made an announcement on the result of the Euro2012 quarter final match between Spain and France: ‘Good evening ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain once again. For your information, the Euro match between Spain and France, Spain beat France 2-0’. This announcement created some cheering and clapping in the cabin.

After dinner, the crew handed out another hot towel a bottle of drinking water to everyone. Then I put my seat into the ‘bed’ mode which was angled flat and slept straight till the cabin flight (mood light) was slowly turned on.

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Before breakfast was served, hot towel was handed out.

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Leg room

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Seat control

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Landing view from the forward camera

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Touched down at 3pm

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Then we were taxied to parking at a gate in Concourse D, which was very close to passport control.

My seat

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Its quite difficult to find a good view of the aircraft

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From the parking gate, we were steps away from passport control

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We proceeded to Thai Passport channel, where we used an automated machine: scanned the passport, scanned fingerprints, looked at the camera. This was done in a minute. But, for the first time, I didn’t get a stamp on my passport when entering Thailand.

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My bags came on the belt after around 10 minutes.

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Then I headed to the departure level (usually a lot less crowed than the Arrival level) where my father picked me up for home.

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This would conclude this trip report. I had another great flight with THAI. I am especially thankful for the upgrade. The cabin crews were great and so was the food and overall experience. However, a negative comment would be that it took a long time for dinner to be served (gaps between each courses were too long) and so dinner serviced ended well after midnight.

Thank you for taking the time to read. As ever, all comments/questions/suggestions are very welcome and appreciated.

Regards,

Win
 
LH4116
Posts: 1183
Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2007 4:39 am

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:57 pm

Hello Win, great report!

Another TG Royal Silk experience! They seem to have gotten quite frequent lately   Service looked fantastic as usual. A bit surprised to see them serving Foie Gras in Biz. Not many airlines (apart from AF) seem to do that these days.

The Op-Up was of course a pleasant surprise, although when traveling with good company any cabin does well. Felt quite sorry for your friend who had to endure Coach all by herself. Surely you did visit her from time to time, also did she have a nice flight?

"Wheels Up"
//Jonas
SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
 
767747
Posts: 2126
Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2005 10:08 am

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Fri Jul 06, 2012 1:38 am

Good report with TG! Food looks to be of a high standard, and the cabin looks comfortable. How nice to get a complimentary upgrade; it certainly makes you feel good and the trip becomes ever better!

Thanks for sharing!

Matthew
I love to fly!
 
debonair
Posts: 2694
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2004 10:50 pm

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Fri Jul 06, 2012 7:40 am

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 1):
I had another great flight with THAI. I am especially thankful for the upgrade. The cabin crews were great and so was the food and overall experience. However, a negative comment would be that it took a long time for dinner to be served (gaps between each courses were too long) and so dinner serviced ended well after midnight.

Slow service is always a problem on a fully booked aircraft- it's a hughe difference to serve 10 or 30 passengers. Especially this A340-600 is offering 60seats and high service levels-quite a challenge... One reason I dislike Lufthansa's A380 with 98(!!!) BusinessClass seats (but this is an other stry)!
 
dc9northwest
Posts: 2142
Joined: Sun Feb 04, 2007 5:33 am

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Fri Jul 06, 2012 9:45 am

Hi Win,

Thanks for another good TR!

It's always good to get an upgrade--shame about not travelling together with your friend though  

The meals look really good... No window seat is the price to pay for the upgrade I guess. It certainly happens often when getting upgraded.

It was a pleasure to read your report, Win!

-Alex
 
MSS658
Posts: 2454
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2010 8:16 am

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Sun Jul 08, 2012 5:35 pm

Hey

Great report, thanks for sharing.
Great job on scoring the upgrade. I must say TG's J class looks a bit better than the ex-9W's ones

Greetings
Marc
Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
 
win1290
Topic Author
Posts: 283
Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 4:38 pm

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Tue Jul 10, 2012 3:24 pm

Hello and Thanks for all the comments!

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 1):

Hello Win, great report!

Thanks Jonas!

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 1):
Another TG Royal Silk experience! They seem to have gotten quite frequent lately   Service looked fantastic as usual. A bit surprised to see them serving Foie Gras in Biz. Not many airlines (apart from AF) seem to do that these days.

The service was great. I think TG served Foie Gras pate in Business class for some times, in fact, when I was flying this route last December, the starter was exactly the same.

Quoting LH4116 (Reply 1):
The Op-Up was of course a pleasant surprise, although when traveling with good company any cabin does well. Felt quite sorry for your friend who had to endure Coach all by herself. Surely you did visit her from time to time, also did she have a nice flight?

You are absolutely right! Well, I must admit that I didn't visit her during the flight    , I felt quite sleepy after the food and fell asleep very quickly after. Anyway, I am sure she had a good flight. She told me that she had 2 seats (though not next to each other), as her allocated seat has a broken screen and there was another seat with working screen but the seat was in a locked position.

Quoting 767747 (Reply 2):
Good report with TG! Food looks to be of a high standard, and the cabin looks comfortable. How nice to get a complimentary upgrade; it certainly makes you feel good and the trip becomes ever better!

Thanks for sharing!

Matthew

Thanks Matthew! Dinner was delicious. The upgrade was a very pleasant surprise, and it absolutely made the trip even better  
Quoting debonair (Reply 3):
Slow service is always a problem on a fully booked aircraft- it's a hughe difference to serve 10 or 30 passengers. Especially this A340-600 is offering 60seats and high service levels-quite a challenge... One reason I dislike Lufthansa's A380 with 98(!!!) BusinessClass seats (but this is an other stry)!

Hi Debonair. I agree with you. The crew on my flight did provide an excellent service despite a full J cabin.

Quoting dc9northwest (Reply 4):
Hi Win,

Thanks for another good TR!

Hi Alex, Thanks a lot.

Quoting dc9northwest (Reply 4):
It's always good to get an upgrade--shame about not travelling together with your friend though  

The meals look really good... No window seat is the price to pay for the upgrade I guess. It certainly happens often when getting upgraded.

I was really happy about getting an upgrade... well, we were still in the same aircraft  
The food tasted good too. You are right, but I didn't mind having an aisle seat in a higher class  
Quoting dc9northwest (Reply 4):
It was a pleasure to read your report, Win!

Really glad you enjoyed reading!

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 5):
Hey

Great report, thanks for sharing.
Great job on scoring the upgrade. I must say TG's J class looks a bit better than the ex-9W's ones

Greetings
Marc

Hey Marc, Thanks for commenting! I personally prefer the look and colour tone on TG's own J cabin, but the 9W's still win on function as they go fully flat.

Regards,

Win
 
gabrielchew
Posts: 3720
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2005 5:43 am

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Tue Jul 10, 2012 9:12 pm

Nice report Win...nice to be back for the summer?

Quoting win1290 (Thread starter):
I took a Great Western train from Bristol Temple Meads to London Paddington which took around 1 hours and 45 minutes, then connecting to Heathrow Airport using Heathrow Express which got me to the airport in 15 minutes

Isn't it easier/faster to use the bus via Reading?

Quoting win1290 (Thread starter):
When it was my turn, I handed my boarding pass and the machine beeped and red light flashing. I was told that I got upgraded to Royal Silk, and was given a new boarding pass. I was very grateful for this, Thanks TG. Thought I must admit, I felt quite bad when telling my friend the news.

Congrats on the upgrade, although its a bit awkeard with your friend. I'm actually wuite surpised given that you had been asked to be sat together, that they didn't ASK if you wanted the upgrade. They knew you wanted to travel together, then they split you up even further
http://my.flightmemory.com/shefgab Upcoming flights: LGW-OPO-LGW,LHR-FCO-CTA-LIN-LCY,LHR-AMS-GRQ-SEN,LTN-CPH-LHR-ORD
 
pilotfox
Posts: 281
Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2006 3:31 am

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Wed Jul 11, 2012 1:08 am

Thanks for the report. I will be traveling BKK-LHR in C next March so I appreciate seeing a report on it.
 
Luv767s
Posts: 260
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2003 7:26 am

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Wed Jul 11, 2012 4:50 am

Looks like a much better experience than my flight last year on LAX-BKK nonstop.
-"...never have I been a blue calm sea, I have always been a storm"
 
nethkt
Posts: 1014
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2001 10:27 am

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Wed Jul 11, 2012 5:31 am

Sawasdee krub nong Win!
Another quality trip report once again. I enjoy reading them all.

This is one of the perks being a Gold member of the airlines you are likely to fly most.
There is no point being gold with, for example, Aegean when you are not likely to fly them that often.
Yes, you will get gold card easily from them but in the end, the airlines you are flying with will look out to upgrade their loyal *G first anyway.

Feel sad for your friend, but I guess she is absolutely understand the situation.

Do love the art work which describe the national's art and blend with TG's corporate color. Nicely done.

Food presentation in Business class (Royal Silk) may not be the best out there, guess due to large portion of business class and limited galley space for full Business class service with all the props etc, but food served still with high quality.

Welcome back home, brother.
Enjoy the break!!
P'Net
Let's just blame it on yields.
 
win1290
Topic Author
Posts: 283
Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 4:38 pm

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Thu Jul 12, 2012 6:57 pm

Hello and thank you for all the comments

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 7):
Nice report Win...nice to be back for the summer?

Hi Gabriel! Thank you. Sure, but I am actually back for good now (well nearly, one more trip to England next week)

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 7):
Isn't it easier/faster to use the bus via Reading?

It is easier and faster to get a coach via Reading (and also the coach station is located 1 min walk from my flat) but I still prefer the trains over the coach.

Quoting gabrielchew (Reply 7):
Congrats on the upgrade, although its a bit awkeard with your friend. I'm actually wuite surpised given that you had been asked to be sat together, that they didn't ASK if you wanted the upgrade. They knew you wanted to travel together, then they split you up even further

Thanks. I agree with you. There was a clear lack of coordination.

Quoting pilotfox (Reply 8):
Thanks for the report. I will be traveling BKK-LHR in C next March so I appreciate seeing a report on it.

Thanks Pilotfox! I hope you have a good flight  
Quoting Luv767s (Reply 9):
Looks like a much better experience than my flight last year on LAX-BKK nonstop.

There was nothing to complain about the flight. Sadly, I never had a chance to fly on the A345 BKK - LAX service. What was unpleasant about your flight?

Quoting nethkt (Reply 10):
Sawasdee krub nong Win!
Another quality trip report once again. I enjoy reading them all.

Sawasdee krub P' Net, and many thanks for the nice words, I am glad you enjoyed them.

Quoting nethkt (Reply 10):
This is one of the perks being a Gold member of the airlines you are likely to fly most.
There is no point being gold with, for example, Aegean when you are not likely to fly them that often.
Yes, you will get gold card easily from them but in the end, the airlines you are flying with will look out to upgrade their loyal *G first anyway.

I agree

Quoting nethkt (Reply 10):
Feel sad for your friend, but I guess she is absolutely understand the situation.

She said its absolutely understandable

Quoting nethkt (Reply 10):
Food presentation in Business class (Royal Silk) may not be the best out there, guess due to large portion of business class and limited galley space for full Business class service with all the props etc, but food served still with high quality.

I haven't had the opportunity to try other airlines' premium catering (I hope one day I do though), but I am usually very happy with the taste with TG J food.

Quoting nethkt (Reply 10):
Welcome back home, brother.
Enjoy the break!!

Thanks krub! Glad to be back

Regards,

Win
 
adamspotter
Posts: 1191
Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:06 pm

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Mon Jul 16, 2012 11:48 am

Hi Win,

Another great report, thanks for sharing. Looks like you had another great flight with Thai and congrats on the upgrade!

cheers,
Brendan // adamspotter
 
win1290
Topic Author
Posts: 283
Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 4:38 pm

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Mon Jul 16, 2012 8:17 pm

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 12):
Hi Win,

Hi Brendan,

Quoting adamspotter (Reply 12):
Another great report, thanks for sharing. Looks like you had another great flight with Thai and congrats on the upgrade!

Thanks a lot. The flight was indeed very nice and the upgrade was a very pleasant surprise.

Regards,

Win
 
Knightsofmalta
Posts: 1683
Joined: Fri Nov 25, 2005 10:51 pm

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Sun Jul 22, 2012 3:37 pm

Hi Win1290

Thanks for the excellent report. I really like the pictures you took.

Just out of curiosity, is the Foie Gras always on the menus in Business Class?

Cheers,
William
 
win1290
Topic Author
Posts: 283
Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 4:38 pm

RE: Thai Airways: The A346 And The Upgrade! LHR-BKK

Mon Jul 23, 2012 4:42 pm

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 14):
Hi Win1290

Hi William!

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 14):
Thanks for the excellent report. I really like the pictures you took.

Thanks a lot, I am very glad you liked it.

Quoting Knightsofmalta (Reply 14):
Just out of curiosity, is the Foie Gras always on the menus in Business Class?

The Foie Gras pate is not always on the menus in Business Class, it wasn't on the menu on the flight I had in January or March, but it was on the menu on the flight I took last December. I am sorry I can't remember it on the flight before that.

Regards,

Win

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