[Click above for the video review.]
It’s been a while since my last post, as I’ve been very busy lately. I hope to post more content periodically. Back to the report: I was very excited for flight. This was my first time on Cathay Pacific’s new Airbus A350 aircraft, and I must say I was pleasantly surprised at how nice the experience was. This trip started at Singapore’s Changi Airport Terminal 1. Check-in was brief and upon check-in, we were given lounge invitations to the DNATA Lounge. The lounge was recently renovated and it is beautiful compared how it was a few years back. The lounge is kind of like a long hallway and offers plenty of seating. Shower rooms were available, but they are rather basic. The lounge also has some decent hot food and beverage offerings – not bad for a contract lounge!
We left the lounge about 45 minutes before departure. A few minutes walk to the gate, and we were able to take a glimpse of the beautiful Airbus A350-900 XWB aircraft. Boarding was pretty civilized and we didn’t have to wait long at the gate as Business Class passengers had priority boarding. Upon boarding the aircraft, I noticed how fresh and airy the business class cabin was. The ceiling was high, and the cabin was bright. I found my seat 15A (my companion was in 14A) on the port side of the plane. Upon settling in, the friendly flight attendant offered us a pre-departure beverage and hot towel and I opted for a glass of champagne.
The seats on the Airbus A350 is similar to Cathay’s current reverse herringbone business class seats (Zodiac Cirrus) offered on their long haul configured Boeing 777 and A330 aircrafts, although this feels more spacious and beautifully updated. The overhead bins are massive. We tried putting our carry on luggage on its side, wheels in and it was able to fit.
After a few minutes, we pushed back and we were on our way to Bangkok. During taxi, the Cabin Manager came by to introduce herself and thanked us for being OneWorld Emerald. Take off was powerful and quick. After about 10 minutes, the Captain turned off the seat belt sign. The flight attendants soon offered more drinks, and then took our meal orders. I ordered the steamed chicken, chinese ham, and rice – and it was delicious! I finished the meal with some ice cream and Hong Kong style milk tea.
After the meal, I decided to visit the lavatory. The lav was clean, spacious, and featured a window. It certainly was “a lav with a view”. It had a touchless faucet, Jurlique skin products, and the signature Cathay fresh Orchid.
Upon returning to my seat, I decided to checkout the in-flight entertainment and was amazed at how snappy and intuitive the menus were. I particularly loved the moving map app, as well as the exterior camera mounted on the nose and tail of the aircraft. The movie, audio, and game selections were decent and offered the latest in Western and Asian entertainment.
Before I knew it, the Captain went on the PA announcing our decent into Bangkok. Our decent was pretty smooth, though landing was a bit hard (but uneventful). We taxied for a few minutes before arriving at our gate. Premium Lane Fast Track Passes were given to Business Class passengers to bypass the long lines at immigration.
To sum it all up: The hard product on this flight was excellent! I really like the Airbus A350 in terms of design and passenger comfort. Top that with a very good and consistent business class service offered by Cathay’s Flight attendants made it an exceptional regional flight. I give this flight a 9.5 out of 10.