A quick note about times in this report - all times are Dubai time until touchdown in Durban when times switch to Durban time.
I left off just as I had gotten off the plane from New York.
There were big red signs for connections everywhere, so it was very easy to find where to go.
Emirates uses A, B, and C gates at Dubai, so there was a big FIDS with gate numbers and walking times to the gates. My flight was at gate B12, which would require taking a train!
Before I could get to the gates, however, there was a security check. Again? I don't really understand this, as everyone in the line had just gotten off another plane… Oh well, the line was short and only took 10 or 15 minutes.
After that, I was unleashed into the gigantic terminal 3. Follow the signs for the B gates!
The underground train.
Holy Dubai Airport!
Here we are - gate B12!
From touchdown of EK204 to the gate of EK775 had only taken 47 minutes - that's really unbelievable.
I couldn't get a clear shot of the airplane from the seating, but I found that the plane was A6-ENC, a 2 class 77W delivered to Emirates 3.7 years ago. I was hopeful for the new TV screens.
I was really tired and had no energy to get up and explore the rest of the terminal, so I just sat and utilized my 60 minutes of free wifi (very fast, if I might add).
Boarding wasn't scheduled to start until 9:40, but around 9:20, the sign at B12 popped up with 'gate open' without an announcement or anything.
I excitedly had my boarding pass scanned, but soon enough realized that everyone was just being shipped off to a cordoned off area with nothing but bathrooms. I should've known - this happened to me at Heathrow T3 6 months ago.
Boarding actually started at 9:53, and being in the way back of economy, I was on board just 10 minutes later.
3-4-3 economy on a 777- nooooooooooooooooooooo. I'd never actually flown it before, but the reviews say it all. Welcome to cattle class everyone.
Sike! The last few rows in the configuration are 2-4-2! The seats are the same width, but there were actually a lot of added bonuses at this seat.
Ahhhhh, yes. Those glorious 12.1-inch monitors I had been looking forward to so much.
Even the remote has a touchscreen!
The view from seat 47A.
On the seat were the same pillow, blanket, and headphones as the last flight.
In addition to 47A only having one seat next to it, there was also space between the seat and the wall to put things (your unwanted blanket and pillow! and the lady behind me's purse).
But also in that space… come on cleaning crew - step it up! Not what I want to be finding.
The seat pitch and width. The pitch seemed similar, but it was noticeably narrower than the A380.
Towels and menus were distributed at the gate.
Our captain announced that we were being delayed by ATC by 20 minutes. True to his words, pushback was at 10:48, and taxi began towards runway 30R began at 10:52.
There's no tail camera on the 777s, but the nose camera is equally as good.
A6-ENC raced down the runway at 11:10, and was airborne 45 minutes behind schedule.
Holy Burj Khalifa! I sat on the right side of the plane!
I queued up a movie while I waited for the meal service. Every movie is prefaced with 2-3 minutes of ads on Emirates.
Life hack: If you have single prong headphones and it's a double/triple prong outlet, plug them in like this. It puts audio in both channels.
My meal was delivered at 12:45. I was planning on having the lamb, but they were all out by the time they reached the back of the plane (I had the same lamb dish on DXB-JFK, though). Chicken it was.
Starting off with the main - chicken, rice, corn, and broccoli. Of course, there was way too much rice and not enough chicken. The chicken was cooked well but didn't taste very good. The veggies were in the same boat. 5/10
Next was the salad - couscous, quinoa, bell pepper, a lone olive, and a lone mozzarella ball. It was cold and tasted okay at best. Extra points for the concept though. 6/10
Breadsticks and salsa - tasty! 4/5
Lastly, dessert - black forest cake. This was excellent - tons of flavor, great texture, and not overly sweet either. 10/10
Oh, and I couldn't forget my mango juice! It's just so good. 5/5
I couldn't be bothered to have the roll or the table crackers - I was so tired and just wanted to go to sleep. I did save the water for later, though.
Total meal score: 30/40. Not as bad as the previous flight, but still not completely up to where I expected it to be.
I felt really tired, so I put my head against the wall and went dead to the world.
I didn't wake up until here, only to realize that I had completely missed the second meal service! I was disappointed (and hungry), but at least I had gotten some sleep.
I hopped up and went to the bathroom to change my clothes (I was feeling especially dirty) and get a cup of water to take my first malaria pill. Woohoo.
I also did some wandering through the cabin, and based off of the number of empty seats, I'd say that economy was about 95% full. Also note the shift from 3-4-3 to 2-4-2.
Back in my seat, we were getting closer to sunset.
I'll do my final thoughts on crew, IFE, and seat before descent and arrival.
The crew from 11 countries who spoke 10 languages was (again) quite cold and unfriendly. There wasn't a whole load of smiling going on, but they did act professionally.
The IFE was hands down the best I've ever experienced. The ICE system is phenomenal, and the screen size, quality, and responsiveness was really unbeatable in my opinion.
The seat pitch was great, but the width was really something to complain about. I'm really skinny, so it didn't bother me, but anyone, even at average size, spills over onto the seat next to them. The seat itself was good enough for 7h30m.
EK775 started descending at 18:16, and I was quite surprised at the landscape.
Runway 24 in sight!
We touched down at 16:40, 5 minutes ahead of schedule.
Taxiing to the gates.
We arrived at the gate at 18:46, and I was off 12 minutes later. The trek to immigration was a long one.
Of course, the worst part of sitting at the back of the back of the plane is that you're last in the immigration line. This looked really fun…
The line for foreigners took me about 55 minutes, but that was because there were only 3 officers to handle a 77W from EK plus the 788 from QR that had arrived just a few minutes earlier. Ugh.
That pretty much wraps up this report - thanks so much for reading! Please leave a comment if you feel inclined - I love reading and responding to them!
Look out for parts 3 and 4 soon!
Dubai - DXB
Durban - DUR
Overall, a better experience than my previous flight with Emirates, but still not up to the standards I was hoping for.
DXB Terminal 3 - Wow. Just wow.
Seat - Great pitch, super narrow, comfortable enough.
Food - Decent
IFE - Incredible screen, incredible system
Crew - Cold, unfriendly, but professional
Durban Terminal 1 - SLOOOOW and understaffed
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