Please keep in mind this is my first routing in English so be kind with my writing, I wanted to start by English for the website to be more convenient for English people. It may not be as fluent as you would expect. Of course if I did some mistakes, please correct me.
As well, I hope my FR covers every aspect of the flight. It is quite a long flight so I know I forgot to take a picture of toilets, they will be available in the KUL-CDG trip back. If you have any other questions, I'm happy to answer.
I will follow an evolving plan for these routings, it will be much more clearer :
I - Booking II - Getting to the airport III - Landside IV - Airside V - Boarding VI - From apron to the air VII - Cabin + IFE (toilets + inflight bar if applicable) VIII - Catering 1 Snack IX - Catering 2 Diner X - Catering 3 BKF XI - Cruising views and winglets where applicable XII - Descent and landing to jetbridge XIII - Deboarding XIV - Immigration (where applicable) XV - Transit (where applicable) XVI - Exiting the airport (luggages + way to hotels)
I - BOOKING
When I started to look at prices and different routes, I came up with this multi-stop option : CDG-SIN (AF)/SIN-PER (JQ) and SYD-AUH (EY)/AUH-AMS (KL)/AMS-CDG (AF/KL). Though, prices were a bit high but the SIN-PER was on J.
You got it. J? On a Jetstar A320 ? Hmm. Let's check on Jetstar website. Yes, as I thought, there is not any J class onboard their A320's fleet. Some days later, what was indicated as a J class on Air France booking system changed to UNKNOWN class. To be honest, a 5 hour flight with Jetstar seemed to me a very bad idea. Don't want to be cramped.
My mother was reticent to fly MH as some million people, maybe. Anyway, there was a big difference between the two prices. The first route was 3278€. If taking : CDG-KUL (AF)/KUL-PER (MH) - SYD-AUH (EY)/AUH-AMS (KL)/AMS-CDG (AF/KL) : 2881€ Other option : CDG-KUL (AF)/KUL-PER (MH) - SYD-KUL (MH)/KUL-CDG (AF) : 2917€
And finally, after waiting and checking AF&KL booking systems for about 3 monthes, prices got very low : 2680€ for the last route option. I thought to it one day, and bought them. I was okay flying with Etihad (more miles), but I saw numerous comments about how they had lost luggages, made miss connections to passengers because flights can be very late Etihad fly when they want etc. I did not want to take any risk with a 28 hour journey in Y class. Flying MH means a fast trip.
When booking MH flights on KLM website, it was (and still is) impossible to choose seats. But because Air France is a sister airline, same booking number, same trip, and on AF website you can ! Good way to avoid paying extra AF booking fees.
I even got Passbook (first time it actually worked for me) :
II - GETTING TO THE AIRPORT
As always, and I do mention it because I'm writing in english, I took a private chauffeur to go to CDG, which is the fastest, safest and more reliable way to get there without being stucked in downtown's jams with the Air France shuttles (they are quite comfy but you've got to have half the day to arrive on time, and they're not cheap). RT in chauffeur costs 96€ period plus optional tip. A deal because it does not vary depending of the time you stay on the road. Of course It would have been too risky with Uber.
So here we are, getting onboard this magnificient Peugeot 508 which some of you here don't like at all, and yes, I prefer as well a 7th series. But to fly a Y, that's always better than common shuttles and suburb trains ! Unfortunately, no photo of that :(
The trip took us 45 minutes.
III - LANDSIDE
CDG is less crowded at the end of the day than it is at midday but even this day at 7PM it was still dense. Nevermind, Air France dismissed traditional people counters with self luggage drop off which means basically that human factor totally disappeared. A few staff is here just to ensure you are not doing a mess and making queues longer than they already are. Obviously, codeshared flights with non SkyTeam member mean problems. When we arrived at self drop off, it started badly, we were not even recognized. I called a staff member to get help, he was not happy being obliged to do so.
He clearly looked bored. He checked on his screen without saying a word and our luggages left. Then he said it was done, he did not even gave us our passports and iPhone (passbook) back and did not wish us a bon voyage. Too much asked already.
We then went to PARAFE, french automated border control. My mother was panicked just at the idea having to deal with the automation. No worries, it worked for her but I had to do it twice to clear the border. System is simple. It reads your passport before opening the first door, then you enter and the system asks you to put a random finger on a touch screen to control your fingerprints. Once cleared, second door opens and you are free to leave.
IV - AIRSIDE
And yes, we are not at a K gate so go Skytrain to L ones.
Once arrived, we cleared security in a few minutes, staff was not too friendly but helpful at least.
Large monitor helps passengers finding their gate when they scan their BPs so here we are, L48 for us, far end at the right.
Because we have a lot of time yet to spend on the terminal before boarding, I went to Travelex asking for my online order. Wrong desk but funds are available anyway. Good point. At that moment, I'm pretty relaxed with my change and heading to gate.
Our Captain is Mr. E. Perrin, it will be 31°C in KUL upon arrival with a +6hr timezone difference and several languages are to be spoke onboard : German, Italian, English, Spanish and French, of course. No delay scheduled.
Blurry picture but monitor says it will be partly cloudy in KUL.
We waited for 20 minutes or so for boarding to be started and then, just after some Malaysian guy asked me for my phone (bothered even at gate…) I realized my passport disappeared. I ran through the terminal to Travelex which I was sure kept it. I was right. Main job of Travelex : helping travellers. Keeping their passport ? Not very helpful… Anyway, I ran back at my gate and boarded good last.
V - Boarding
F-HPJA AF A380 is in the background. Our aircraft for tonight is F-GSPN, 14,7 yo and old colours. So no Best&Beyond but that's not surprising because AF did plan to let a triple 7 go and to leave KUL as well. So no need for them to shine on that route.
Refuelling in progress
IFE is aged as we all know but the content is here and up to date.
VI - FROM APRON TO THE AIR
Pitch is quite generous although we have to keep in mind flight duration is 12 hours and 20 minutes. Seat not wide enough though. This is the main problem. 10 seats upfront have to be paid. I'm not fat at all, but frankly this is annoyingly and ridiculously small for me.
We got a warm welcome on board from staff as always with AF flight attendants.
At 7:40PM everyone is onboard which means pushback can start perfectly on time for a flight a little longer than scheduled (14 minutes).
That's all. Yep, no mask… But a synthetic blanket nonetheless.
N661US far away
Our left wing and left fuel tank as well
We have a nice summer sky to end our wait in Paris.
We taxied through Hop! land with F-HBXH
We are ready to take-off Runway 26R as I expected. I am on the right aircraft side to do some pictures of Paris
The Stade de France
The Montparnasse Tower, Paris' sole skyscraper
French National Symbol, The Eiffel Tower and the Champs de Mars plus the Military School and the UNESCO HQ behind
Climbin' through clouds. In about 20 minutes, thanks to the GE90's huge power, we are already cruising at FL330
VII - CABIN + IFE
Our delay disappeared, we are already back on schedule at 2:15 PM at KUL. On Y front rows we have a summer camp there and they are noisy…
About padding, I'd say 50% in W, 100% in Y. We did not cross J class so no idea for that matter.
Newer music from IFE, good point
Sun is fading…
VIII - CATERING - SNACK 1
Let's hop back inside
At 8:43PM, snack : cheese crackers + apple juice for me
My mother always asks for a coffee when she knows it is not available at the moment, she always has it
IX - CATERING - DINER 2
Menus are handed to pax. FA in charge of our corner are very friendly. We have an Italian woman who is always smiling and very professionnal.
Chicken mustard sauce plus pan fried potatoes for me
Pasta salad was very tasty and quality was there
The main meal was very hot and tasted very good as well. Nothing to complain about. Everything was cooked well, not dry at all.
Camembert was typically french
Lemon Tart Dessert was good but a bit small
Night is falling
Because IFE is old, it had to be rebooted at 3 times, meaning a 1hr loss (each reboot takes 20 minutes).
Before sleep, I headed to the inflight bar to get some apple juice, did not take pictures about it but the FA did it with smile and talked with other passengers who seemed so happy about the flight they did drink a lot of alcohol, which is why they ended up in the second galley as told by the FA to continue.
Btw, toilets were clean.
It is time for a little nap.
Seat is very unconfortable as you'll see in conclusion. I am badly installed and for hours I tried to find a good spot, unfortunately in this seat there is not. Cushion on the window, cushion behind my back, audio headset to shut down GE90 noise… not a thing to do about comfort. I slept for an hour and a half, not more. I woke up between Karachi and Khombat bay.
I definitely gave up when we were about to cross Bengal Bay
Of course because we are going East I knew that 5 hours and a half into the flight sun was going to set. But windows are to be kept closed at all times…
X - CATERING - BKF 3
An hour before landing BKF was served, as always, it is too late but AF keeps doing that. Portuguese sausages with mashed potatoes, orange juice, white cheese, nice bread, jam and stewed apple sauce.
Throughout our 2 meals, we were not offered oshiboris, which is bad because we couldn't clean our hands.
Our neighbour was quiet and friendly and he dit let us go out when we asked, hopefully he did not sleep. We did not abused, we left our seats 2 times in 12 hours !
XI - CRUISING VIEWS AND WINGLETS WHERE APPLICABLE / Closed window
XII - DESCENT AND LANDING / TO JETBRIDGE
And we are back outside for a lot of views of our descent
Can you guess the VIP ?
This is MH 738 old and new colours land !
SriLankan and Silkair are here as well both in A320 family
XIII - DEBOARDING
We parked at Gate C4 Terminal M International Level
XIV - IMMIGRATION (not applicable)
XV - TRANSIT (where applicable)
We made our way to the transit desk and asked the lady what was our next Gate because the monitors did not show it yet (too early). She gave us the information and we headed to it. It was at the far end of the pier. It was really difficult to take photos of the Terminal as there were lot of hijab and burqas I for obvious reasons did not want to be in my pictures to avoid any troubles so basically I just have a picture of the roof ^^
What is good to know about KUL is you do have a transit part but you have to clear security once again before having access to your gate. There are not a lot of space outside the gates so if you are too early at the airport you may well have to wait in standing position.
XVI - Exiting the airport (luggages + way to hotels) Not applicable
Paris - CDG
Kuala Lumpur - KUL
Well, I am young, 21. I had a back ache 85 minutes after taking my seat. No need to tell stories about it. It is bad, period. The cushion handed doesn't really improve the experience so I have to give a bad mark for comfort plus I had no mask to sleep. Crew was friendly and professionnal. Catering was mostly very good even if I don't really like sausages at BKF. IFE is well furnished but had to be rebooted 3 times, so cabin is too old. Punctuality was perfect. Taxi was long upon arrival, 15 minutes late at gate (but for a 12h20 flight) so no worries about transit (we had 4h30mins). It seems like we had stronger winds than expected.
To conclude, well, flight itself was long due to the seat. I think it is a bad idea to fly in these conditions. Even good catering considered, if you have to fly these types of routes without Best and Beyond, I'd recommend W class at least...
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