mrkerr7474
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HKG-WLG & a trip on the Queen in premium economy with Qantas (Part 2)

Sun Jan 27, 2019 4:29 am

After a rather hectic few months, I finally have the time to write up part 2 of my journey from October 2018 between Wellington and Hong Kong.

You can find part 1 here: WLG-HKG & a trip on the Queen in business with Qantas (Part 1) viewtopic.php?f=9&t=1406935

After another amazing adventure to Hong Kong, and after saying goodbye to my friend the night before for her return home, it was time to head back to New Zealand. I stayed at the Regal Airport Hotel with awesome views of the apron and runway for the last night being in Hong Kong and on departure day I relaxed by hitting the gym, swimming pool & sauna before heading off to check-in for 6pm.

Some views of airport from my hotel room

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Check-in was done in a few minutes and I had boarding passes in hand. Security and immigration was an easy process and done in 5 minutes.

I chose not to take any photos or the check-in area (lines separated by a small sign only) and nor did I chose to take any photos of the Qantas Hong Kong lounge. The lounge was what you would expect for Qantas, I really liked the new design of the lounge here as well as it being light and airy with some decent view of the action outside, although with it being dark it was relatively hard to see everything as you would expect. Food and drink selections were pretty good and found it a lot nicer than the Sydney business lounge for example. I didn't checkout the showers here as I showered at the hotel. The only thing I wasn't sure about was the fact that the lounge is open aired to all the action below, you could frequently hear the announcements at the boarding gates around the lounge which took away the seclusive feeling of the lounge, so not sure if others have had the same feelings about that or not. Otherwise the lounge was really good and cannot wait for the upgrades around the rest of the QF network. After just over an hour in the lounge, off to the boarding gate which was accessed from the lounge and down the escalator.


Chapter 3: Hong Kong - Sydney

Flight: QF128
Aircraft: 747-400
Registration: VH-OEF Oneworld Livery
Class: Premium Economy
Seat: 37G
Dep: 2000 (ATD: 2017)
Arr: 0755 (ATA: 0734)

Boarding started right on time at 1915. Country Road amenity kits, headphones, pillow and blanket were on the seat waiting for me. Cabin crew came around offering complimentary pre-drink beverage of orange juice, champagne or water with me going for the usual orange juice. Doors were shut at 1950 and push-back 8 minutes later. A 15 minute taxi to the active ensued with a small wait for other aircraft to depart runway 24 in Hong Kong. We slowly made our way onto the runway with wheels up at 2017 and we were off into the darkness bound for Sydney.

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Seat View

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Shortly after departure, drinks order was taken and I decided to throw a spanner in the works by ordering apple juice for once, which was rather delicious. Not sure if this was in the new glassware that they brought in due to the recent PER-LHR flight and new releases they have introduced but I loved the design and wouldn't have minded taking it home with me! Drink was served alongside a small bag of pretzels / nuts as well. I put The Greatest Showman on while waiting for the meal service. If anyone hasn't seen the film, I highly recommend it, it's very well made!

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Plenty of entertainment options on-board Qantas long haul flights and I generally find the touchscreens to be quite responsive but some flights can be hit or miss, luckily it was as easy hit this time around.

Menus were handed before takeoff and the meal service started around 1 hour after departure. I went for the Chicken Provencal with mashed potato, broccoli and carrot. The whole meal being served on the one tray (common now on QF flights I think lately as prior to that the meal process was served individually). The whole meal was very tasteful and the rather delicious mousse to end the meal was gratefully enjoyed. Tea and coffee shortly followed once the meal trays were taken away, however I declined due to being a night flight.

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Cabin lights were then turned off and I sat back listening to country music (yes I am one of those people who enjoy country music) while trying to fall asleep, failing miserably as usual on flights so ended up tossing and turning for the next few hours. Those hours seemed to pass by quickly though and the crew were back in action getting breakfast ready. I went for the Brookfarm macadamia toasted muesli with cranberries and a coffee to help wake me up, I always enjoy Qantas coffee.

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Trays were cleared away and I sat listening to music and watching the moving map for the last part of the flight. Cabin crew then prepared the cabin for landing into Sydney where we touched down at 7.34am, just over 20 minutes early. A short taxi to the gate followed and disembarkation began for most likely the last time I will set foot on the Queen of the Skies.

Off to the QF business lounge for a much needed shower (you can see photos of this on part 1 of my trip report). And then some more breakfast (sausages, bacon and eggs) with a much needed barista made flat white to keep me going as I was slowly crashing. I only took one photo of the lounge as seen below as the place was rather busy and wanted to respect the others in the lounge.

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After a quick 50 minutes in the lounge, I headed off for the final flight of my adventure all the way at gate 55, which was good for stretching my legs for a good 10 minutes walking there.

Chapter 4: Sydney - Wellington

Flight: QF161
Aircraft: 737-800
Registration: VH-XZB
Class: Business
Seat: 1A
Dep: 09.30 (ATD: 0939)
Arr: 1440 (ATA: 1424)

Boarding started at 0845 while I was walking to the lounge and was actually the last business class passenger to board and had a free seat next to me, always happy days that is. Business was rather empty on this flight, only 7/12 seats taken. Pillow, headphones and menu were already at the seat waiting.

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Crew came by to offer the usual pre-departure drink of water, orange juice or champagne and you guessed it, orange juice it was once again.

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Boarding was completed just before 0920 and pushback was just a couple of minutes later slightly ahead of schedule.

Just before pushback

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After pushback, Emirates A380 off to Christchurch

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After a quick taxi and a short wait at runway 16L, we jetted off into the sky above Sydney at 0939 for our Tasman trip to Wellington.

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Shortly after takeoff, hot towels were distributed which is always a welcomed. And crew came back around to ask for our breakfast choice. I decided to go with the Greek style yoghurt with sour cherry compote and the smoked leg ham toastie which were both fantastic. And of course, a coffee to go along with this. I wasn't expecting too much with the toastie but this was incredible tasteful as was the yoghurt and cherry compote.

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Entertainment doesn't have as much choice compared to long haul flights which is totally understandable, but perfectly adequate for the flights across the Tasman. I decided to watch Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.

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Once the film finished, there wasn't that much time left so I just listened to the QF music channel and watched the moving map / enjoying the views outside.

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We were landing almost 30 minutes early due to favourable tail winds and preparation for landing begun just after 2pm local time NZ. Screens had to be stowed so I continued to listen to music throughout landing. Had some stunning views flying over the top of the South Island. The ocean was somewhat choppy down below with some typical Wellington wind knocking us around as we closed in on 34R

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Touchdown was at 14.24 and we were at the gate a few minutes later

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Last view of the aircraft

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Conclusion:

A thoroughly enjoyable trip on Qantas once more and couldn't fault anything on the return journey. Crew were really good, very professional and smiley (a big difference compared to the crew heading to Hong Kong from Sydney). Food was really good on this return journey as well, couldn't fault anything here at all. A great adventure overall for me and cannot wait to have the next one on Qantas once more.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed :)

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