I wandered down from the United First Class Lounge at Heathrow to the gate a few minutes before boarding was due to start. Thai separate premium boarding from Economy boarding on opposite sides of the gate lounge. Boarding came and went and nothing happened. Eventually First and Business Class passengers were asked to start a queue and about five minutes later we were on board.
Thai has it’s First Class on the Upper Deck of the A380 and I was escorted to my window seat by the crew.
First impressions of the seat is that it is large and semi-private. the 1-2-1 configuration works quite well in the cabin. Headsets were in place and there was a bag under the seat with my bedding, ready for the night.
You can see the privacy screen in the centre of the middle seats when those are occupied by people not travelling together. There is luggage space over the centre seats. There was plenty of room for the carry on for passenger in the full cabin on my journey.
The crew came around with pre-departure drinks including Dom Perignon in frosted glasses – as shown at the top of the post. Refills were available.
Sitting down I noticed how wide the seats were, but also how far away the screen is. It doesn’t move and is badly affected by light in the cabin I found. In the end I watched a single movie that I had seen before. There was a reasonable selection of movies from multiple cultures.
The crew delivered pajamas, amenity kits (a nice black Rimova case that I will be giving away to a lucky reader on Friday, so come back them), as well as slippers.
I popped through to the large toilet to change. Crafted in an L shape there was lots of space.
Pretty soon we were ready for departure and taxied off to the end of the runway. We did not have to wait long to be airborne, flying across southern England as we made our way on the fourteen hour flight to Bangkok.
Thai offers the chance to pre-order a wide range of premium meals, not just those required by diet or religion. I took the chance to pre-order the beef, and the crew confirmed that this was still my choice when they took meal orders.
The menu is below:
Drinks came with chicken satay:
It was tasty and did really set the tone for my flight. Champagne continued to flow and it I though that it was such a long time since I had DP on a plane. I even recalled that once – for a period – United used to serve DP! (They did eventually run out though!)
The staff laid out the table and delivered the bread basket. Qatar does a similar thing and I really like the concept. BA still delivers one roll at a time.
The crew did the caviar course from a cart. As I don’t eat caviar I just had the garnishes!
The starter arrived:
It was pretty tasty, although it looked more like duck that tuna!
My main meal was presented pretty soon, and whilst the green beans were soggy, it did taste good.
I ordered dessert and found that it was tiny, so had the cheese and crackers too!
The food was generally tasty – not exceptional, but still pretty good for airline food.
I had my bed made up and slept for a few hours. It was still early evening UK time so I did get 3-4 hours before waking up. I asked for the inflight snack and had the shrimp wanton soup.
Another doze and I woke as we were about 2 hours out of Bangkok. The crew started breakfast a little later but I decided not to have any more to eat.
We landed early at BKK and after a long taxi we parked at a gate near the terminal. There was a cart at the end of the jet bridge ready to take me to the lounge. Well in truth it takes you to the bottom of an escalator which takes you to the First Class Lounge. The staff welcomed me, and I booked a short (30 minute) massage. I could have taken the full 60 minute massage but wanted to get some food.
I wandered around the First Class Lounge and found that all the Private Rooms were taken and so located a couple of quiet seats. The lounge was not full, and after about 5 minutes the massage was ready and I was taken over the spa. Here I enjoyed a lovely foot and leg massage before going back to the First Class Lounge for breakfast. The staff have an iPad which you order from, it includes pictures of their varying offering, making it easy to choose. My cornflakes, coffee and juice came in about 5 minutes and I snacked until it was time to go for my connecting flight.
The crew track down passengers when it is time to go, and they got myself and two other passengers about 30 minutes before departure. The connecting flight to Hong Kong was parked at the furthest possible gate from the lounge so luckily they had laid on another buggy. We drove, fairly smartly to the G concourse, had to re-clear security (I had to do this on the way to the lounge once) and then walk to the end of the G pier. Even with this, I was the first passenger up the steps to the cabin! At this gate no jet-bridge takes you to the upper deck and so you get to climb the stairs. Business Class passengers at the rear of the cabin have to do the same.
Overall, it’s a pretty decent product. The staff are friendly and helpful. Spectacular – No. Solid – Yes.