Having been disappointed once by Royal Brunei Airlines back in November last year, I was more than determined to fly on the Dreamliner. When TG announced the schedule for their domestic training flights, fellow a.netter yapple and myself knew we had to go on it.
Seeing the Dreamliner so close up and even flying on it is such a dream. It felt so surreal to follow it all the way from the first ever flight until it finally took off back in October 2011 on its first ever commercial service. Back to TG, their inaugural flight was scheduled to be on 8th July 2014. However, a few weeks before the scheduled inaugural, it was pushed back to 25th July. As fate would have it, we have planned our trip to be from 24th to 27th July and it was definitely a blessing for us - to get on our inaugural inaugural flight and our inaugural Dreamliner flight! It is also our first time flying domestically in Thailand.
Join us on our journey as we chase the TG Dreamliner - The new lifestyle above the earth.
Our journey was to start from Singapore as usual. As a positioning flight, we chose Scoot as our carrier of choice since yapple has not flown with them yet and I like them. Our only complaint was that the departure from Singapore is slightly late at 5.35pm which leaves us with not much things to do after arriving.
Instead of the usual taxi to bring me to the airport, I got my usual Uber driver instead since they were having a promotion. A 40km journey from my home to the airport cost just S$22, what a steal! I really like the Uber concept as I can relax in whereever I am until the car comes. Our friend, Samuel was to come to have lunch with us and send us off so we met slightly earlier at lunch time.
We settled on Saboten for lunch, a nice Japanese restaurant with nice fried stuff and best of all, unlimited cabbage, soup and rice refills! The cabbage is probably one of the best I have ever had and I could devour 3 big bowls by myself.
The guy who sent us off
After a nice lunch and checking in for our flight, it was time to go airside. The Scoot flight was pleasant and we got the "Scoot-in-silence" seats for free when we requested for a window seat. The flight was pretty uneventful and soon we reached BKK. The immigration lines were long and I am really looking forward to when Scoot moves to DMK.
Beautiful clouds along the way
No doubt on the aircraft we are flying and the airline we are on!
A simple cabin shot
We happily checked in to our hotel after clearing immigration and getting a taxi.... and ordered room service! As mentioned in my previous report, Adelphi Grande was my only hotel of choice if I were to visit BKK. This time it was no exception.
My usual fare, the hot and spicy Thai Green Curry
The next morning, we woke up at 4am to prepare for our flight which was supposed to depart at 7.50am. Arriving at the airport, we headed straight for the domestic check in counters and was attended to quickly. When the agent was printing our boarding passes, we decided to check again if the aircraft was to be the Dreamliner.
"Is the aircraft a Boeing 787?"
"Please let me check Sir."
A while later...
"No Sir, the aircraft is an Airbus."
"What?! We were told that this flight is supposed to be operated by a Boeing 787."
"Oh I am sorry Sir, it is indeed a Boeing 787."
Both of us heaved a heavy sigh of relief, not wanting to get disappointed again. Since this was the first ever commercial flight for TG's Dreamliner, we were expecting some sort of celebration or reception but apparently nothing was to be found. There was also no banners or even any signs of it being an inaugural flight. Perhaps TG wanted to leave the blings blings for the first international service?
The gate area was surprisingly calm and no one looked like they knew what was happening today. Oh well, forget it. Let's get onto the Dreamliner, at least it is parked at our gate! HS-TQA, a.k.a ONGKHARAK is parked at gate A6 and still shining new. It has just arrived from PAE less than 2 weeks ago. With all the anticipation, the flight was soon ready for boarding.
Check in counters
Surroundings of the domestic counters
On the way to fulfill a dream
Oh yes, there she is!
No one seems to be excited.. Or do they know what they are in for?
Thai Airways International Flight TG102 - 25 JUL 2014
Origin: Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK/VTBS)
Destination: Chiang Mai International Airport (CNX/VTCC)
Registration: HS-TQA (Ongkharak)
Aircraft: Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner
Scheduled Time of Departure: 7.50am
Actual Time of Departure: 8.30am
Scheduled Time of Arrival: 9.10am
Actual Time of Arrival: 9.25am
Airborne Time: 55 minutes
Class of Travel: Economy
Once onboard, we swiftly made our way to our seats. However, I was flabbergasted. My seat has no window! Well, it does have one, but I need to lean forward by a whole lot to look out. It does not look like there are any empty seats around after boarding was completed so I had to stick to this seat.
We boarded quite early
More people trickling in
Bad news for any a.netter!
I still managed to get a limited view out
Looking out the sole window
Look at how beautiful it is
Had no seatmate for now, so I quickly took some photos
Legroom was good
IFE controller conveniently placed below the PTV
Huge overhead bins!
Overhead air vents and reading lights
Have a sense of how the legroom will be like!
On longer flights, this will be a lifesaver
Seat pocket contents
The best channel ever!
I still love these blue hues
A better view
The crew all getting ready
Taxiing to the runway
It was a very long wait before we finally pushed back. I guess there were some extra documentation or whatever since it is the first ever flight and the ground crew and/or aircrew might be still trying to familarize themselves.
After a long wait, we finally pushed back and headed to the runway for takeoff. They seem to have a new kind of safety video for the Dreamliner. It is rare that the video actually features the exact aircraft you are on (at least in my case). In this case, an accurate depiction of the Dreamliner's cabin is shown.
Takeoff video can be found here:
The takeoff was pretty powerful and pleasant. As you can hear from the video, a Disney-like music was played shortly after takeoff. I am not sure why but probably ambient music. I have flown TG numerous times on international services but never heard of this music before, nor have any impression of them playing any music specially after takeoff.
Shortly after takeoff
This is not an error photo. This was how it looked like when we encountered a bit of rough weather shortly after takeoff
After the turbulence was cleared, the crew sprung into action immediately for this short domestic hop across the Kingdom of Thailand. I was definitely not expecting any meal for this sector, but just a small snack box. The snack box did not disappoint though. It consisted of a very nice pie and biscuit. It tastes wonderful and they definitely deserve the "Best Economy Class Catering" award from Skytrax.
The tables are in a 2-fold design. I like this design
Very nice and simple design for the snack box
Plastic cups are also included if you wish to have any coffee or tea
Crew in action
My tea which the crew went around asking everyone if they needed any
TG has once again changed to a new set of IFE system for their Dreamliner. The particular system on the Dreamliner fleet is very crisp and clear. While I did not have time to explore the video contents, it looks pretty adequate for a medium haul flight. The touch screen was responsive too and I did not have to use the controller at all.
The welcome screen
The zoomed out map, pretty much showing almost the entire Asia-Pacific region
I like this!
Some information about our flight
The flight coming to an end
Looking at this, the plane is actually longer than BKK-CNX! Haha
Got a travel companion seated somewhere else? No problem! Use this chat feature to communicate with each other
The different options available. Some of the options were not available
More from the main menu
Do your shopping right from your seat!
After exploring the entertainment system, it was time to explore the windows of the Dreamliner, which boasts a totally different style from the usual airliners that we know. Instead of pulling down the window shades, you dim them. Most of you should be pretty familiar with this already!
A blue light shines in
The wing somehow looks so attractive
I cannot get enough of the wing!
It was soon time to land into CNX. The flight was so short and I wished it lasted longer. Probably someday I will return to try the TG Dreamliner on a longer flight. The approach was fine and the TG Dreamliner touched down smoothly on CNX runway 36 after a short flight from BKK.
Landing video can be found here:
A bright ray of golden sun shines down on CNX after we land
We were soon docked at gate 6 and passengers started deplaning. A few of us, obviously aviation geeks stayed behind to take pictures of the interior. Not only did the crew not mind, they also offered to help us take our photos! I knew I placed TG in my favourite airline list for a reason.
An empty cabin once again
We decided to head out to the gate area to try to take photos of the aircraft from outside. Once again, the people in the airport were pretty hospitable and understanding. One of them even approached us and.. you guessed it, offered to take our photo! We thanked her and handed her our cameras. After the phototaking session, she even asked us, "First flight?" to which we nodded with a huge smile.
The beauty from outside!
Simple and nice walkway
The international side
One more view!
It was like a dream come true to finally fly on the Dreamliner. While it was a short flight, the TG crew displayed an ultimate level of professionalism while still making you feel warmly welcomed. If given a choice, I would want to fly with their Dreamliner again, hopefully on a longer flight next time, or even in J! While they are still operating it on domestic services as of now, I urge everyone who wants to give it a try to do it. You will not regret it!
Flying 5 Star - SQ SIN-CAN-SIN (2009) (by Initious Mar 26 2010 in Trip Reports)
Sardines In A Can - Jetstar Asia SIN-HKG-SIN (by Initious Mar 29 2010 in Trip Reports)
Away We Go - China Southern SIN-CAN-WUH Vv (1/2) (by initious Apr 2 2010 in Trip Reports)
Away We Go - China Southern WUH-CAN-SIN (2/2) (by initious Apr 14 2010 in Trip Reports)
Oldest Vs Newest: Royal Silk Class On Thai (by Initious Jun 13 2010 in Trip Reports)
First On Airliners.net - CZ Shanghai To Shantou (by Initious Jun 27 2010 in Trip Reports)
18 Hours Of Royal Orchid Service: Thai PVG-BKK-SIN (by initious Jul 27 2010 in Trip Reports)
Good Morning Borneo! - Where Silkair Unwinds... (by initious Oct 17 2010 in Trip Reports)
Irama AirAsia! - Kota Kinabalu To Singapore (by initious Oct 24 2010 in Trip Reports)
Great Asia Trip Part 1 - Propping To Luxury (by Initious Mar 23 2011 in Trip Reports)
Great Asia Trip Part 2 - In Love With Emirates (by initious Mar 27 2011 in Trip Reports)
Great Asia Trip Part 3 - The Arabian Adventure (by initious Apr 15 2011 in Trip Reports)
Great Asia Trip Finale - Brothers In Bangkok (by initious May 9 2011 in Trip Reports)
Flying The Orange Star Monopoly - SIN-SWA On 3K (by initious May 18 2011 in Trip Reports)
China Southern SWA-CAN - Do They Deserve 4 Star? (by initious May 21 2011 in Trip Reports)
A Dream Come True - SQ Business Class CAN-SIN (by initious Jun 13 2011 in Trip Reports)
Malaysia Boleh! - To Malaysia With 3K And AK (by initious Jun 30 2011 in Trip Reports)
Flying On My Birthday - The Triangle In SEA (by initious Jul 18 2011 in Trip Reports)
Happy Beyond Words - SIN-PEN-SIN On MH & TR (by initious Nov 6 2011 in Trip Reports)
People: They Make An Airline. Cathay SIN-HKG (by Initious Jan 28 2012 in Trip Reports)
Cathay, Make Up Your Mind! HKG-SIN On The A333 (by initious Mar 26 2012 in Trip Reports)
1 New Airport, 10 Steps Forward. Jetstar SIN-SWA (by initious Apr 22 2012 in Trip Reports)
China "Sudden" Airlines SWA-HKG - 4 Star? Really? (by initious Apr 27 2012 in Trip Reports)
Celebrities In Asia's World City - Jetstar HKG-SIN (by Initious May 13 2012 in Trip Reports)
Get Outta Here! With SCOOTitude - Down Under! (by Initious Jun 28 2012 in Trip Reports)
Flying In OZ On A Virgin Kangaroo - SYD-MEL-ADL (by initious Jul 2 2012 in Trip Reports)
Exploring Unknown Lands - Wonders Of South Aussie (by Initious Jul 11 2012 in Trip Reports)
Scoot - Where's The SCOOTitude? (by Initious Aug 2 2012 in Trip Reports)
The Definition Of Awesomeness - With D&Y To M'sia (by Initious Oct 16 2012 in Trip Reports)
The Taste Of Freedom - A Trip Down Under (by Initious Sep 3 2013 in Trip Reports)
To The Top Of The World - The Land Of Nice People (by Initious Oct 2 2013 in Trip Reports)
Sawasdeekrup! To The Land Of Martial Law With OD (by Initious Aug 22 2014 in Trip Reports)