I connected in Singapore on to a Cathay flight to Hong Kong, their home base. A few days before travel I noticed that the regional business class had been changed to a plane with flat beds. My 2-2-2 config had become 1-2-1. There were very few window choices left and I was lucky to secure 19A, the first row in the second cabin, seen on the right of the picture above.
Security at the gate had two lines but only one machine working so the passport checkers were slipping Business Class passengers in to the Economy queue. The security staff were arguing amongst themselves as the bins were getting overloaded and had to be re-run. After that, Cathay staff checked passports and sent Business Class passengers to a special seating area within the lounge.
We boarded on time, with Business Class and elites being asked to board first.
Once on board I was directed to my seat, for my three hour trip to Hong Kong. A pillow was there already and blankets were brought round on request.
It was the standard Cathay seat, which I really like. Private, comfortable with plenty of space. 19A had two windows. The standard CX controls were on my left, at ear level. The Business Class cabin was pretty full but there was plenty of space in the overhead bins. There are two loos in the Business Class cabin, one by the cockpit and the other mid-cabin on the right hand side.
In the small cupboard around the side of the control were the headphones. A good range of movies and TV channels were available on the screen.
The Cabin Service Director came round and greeted oneworld Emerald’s welcoming us and taking our meal orders first. This was great as I suspect I would have not managed to secure my first choice otherwise being sat at the back of the Business class cabin.
The starter was a prawn, cucumber rice paper rolls with ginger chilli sauce and a mixed garden salad:
A range of wines were offered – champagne, white (Burgundy and Sauvignon Blanc) and red (Shiraz and Cote de Rhone).
A range of breads were also brought round.
For the entree there was a choice of Steamed Chicken, Braised veal cheek or mee siam. This was the chicken:
It was pretty tasty and I enjoyed it. Nodding off – after a good few hours of travel – before the cheese and ice-cream course.
The crew were lovely and arranged a Duty Free purchase about 20 minutes before landing.
Unfortunately we arrived at Gate 70, the furthest possible from immigration. I should have taken one of the paid buggies rather than walking and taking the train. It took a good long time to get to the queues for the e-channels.
I noticed that the e-channel lanes are now of two sorts – those that take the bar codes used for foreigners and those that take Hong Kong ID cards only. Make sure you get in the right queue. Despite not being to HKG since 2009, the system remember my bar code and finger print and I was out and on the train about 10 minutes later.
All around, a good flight with nice friendly staff, and a decent (if not spectacular) meal.