Review of Cathay Pacific flight Hong Kong Chicago in Economy

Airline Cathay Pacific
Flight CX806
Class Economy
Seat 42B
Aircraft Boeing 777-300ER
Flight time 14:45
Take-off 26 Jun 15, 11:55
Arrival at 26 Jun 15, 13:40
CX 459 reviews
aussenrist
By 7853
Published on 24th September 2015
Hello everyone and this is my first flight report here.

Background

I am a typical Hong Kong 9 to 5 office worker. In Q4 2014 I was reminded that I needed to clear my unused annual leaves before July 2015 otherwise it would be forfeited. Since one of my best friend is now studying Master degree in Chicago, I planned a 2-week vacation started form late June 2015 to visit him and sightseeing. In the meantime, Cathay was promoting round trip tickets to North America which further motivated my travel aspiration. For this trip I also travelled in Minnesota Twin Cities, Madison WI and D.C. (recommended by my friend because of 4th July and he is a big fan of House of Cards!!!)

For the domestic flights inside the USA, as I need to have 4 eligible flights for renewing my Marco Polo Club membership, I choose American (Oneworld) and here is my routing:

photo map

This is my first time in Cathay (and long TPAC flight) and American, and travelling in the USA!


The report will be broken down as follows:
1. CX806 HKG-ORD B777-300ER [You are here!]
2. AA4319 ORD-MSP Embraer E-175 [http://flight-report.com/en/report-11769.html]
3. AA3067 MSN-ORD Embraer E-145 [http://flight-report.com/en/report-11836.html]
4. AA2323 ORD-DCA B737-800 [http://flight-report.com/en/report-11913.html]
5. AA2239 DCA-ORD B737-800 [http://flight-report.com/en/report-12041.html]
6. CX807 ORD- HKG B777-300ER [http://flight-report.com/en/report-12515.html]


Flight Report

I made my online check-in one day before the flight and chose the seat. Due to ticket limitations I could only choose those middle seats each 3-seat column
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On that day I left home at 7am, had breakfast and took the Airport Express from Tsing Yi Station. I took the Express rather than bus because on that morning there was traffic accident on the Tsing Ma Bridge with a serious traffic jam!

I arrived the airport around 9am and I was immediately attracted by this poster:
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The counter check-in process was very smooth even the long queue and soon I proceeded to immigration and security control to enter the airside.

Still having time I tried getting into the Plaza premium lounge since I have free admission tickets but there are too many people and therefore I forgave it
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View of the North Satellite Concourse, the sky is so nice today!
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A Delta A330 plane to Seattle was near our boarding gate
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Boarding started before 40 minutes the flight since we need to have extra security check. I was so bumpkinish that I took photos around the boarding gate and did not aware that photography is not allowed during checking (I am too stupid lol). Suddenly one of the security staff came and stopped me and censored me to delete the photos.
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After the smooth checking I sat aside and had a look at my plane
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The queue
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Walking to economy cabin through the famous Cathay business cabin and I was warmly greeted by the FAs.
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And the middle one was my original seat with pillow and blanket (I will tell you why original…)
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A packed headphone. Standard one.
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The view from my original seat to the economy cabin. It was near the premium economy cabin with 3-3-3 configuration
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The leg room for Cathay economy class. OK for me
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Cathay touchscreen IFE system, we started from here!
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View from the wing (Dragonair)
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The aircraft safety card and magazines
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Later a family of 5 came in and found their seats which were around me. From their conversations I knew that they purchased their tickets through travel agencies with continuous seats chosen i.e. row 42 seat ABCDE. But ultimately the father and mother’s seats are on my both sides and I “separated” them! Then the father asked me if I could exchange his roadside seat to me and I definitely accepted it because I could have more space for my legs!

Passengers started settling down. The plane is 100% full today.
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The menu and custom declaration form were then distributed.
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The plane pushed back and started playing animated safety videos. Very standard one and not as hilarious as Delta’s (just I think).
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The plane took off and immediately turned left (south)
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Navigating the IFE. It is very active and contains a lot of shows. Heisenberg is always my favorite!!! (indeed I have already finished all seasons)
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Meal services started around 45 minutes after the take off. It was lunch and provided with 3 options: beef rice, chicken with mashed potato or vegetarian spaghetti. I am a no-beef people and not prefer having vegetarian so I finally chose the chicken one.
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The lunch tasted good but in my opinion the sauce was too strong for me
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Haagen-Dazs ice cream was served after the entrée. Tasty!
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After the lunch the FA turned off the light for passenger resting
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I then went to the toilet. It is clean and tidy
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Some people were playing cards game with IFE while I was watching some variety shows for the next 3 hours and kept asking the FAs for water. They gave me quickly each time.
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3 hours later the economy cabin was gradually filled with cup noodles smell. I ordered one and the family around me also ordered one each. It is chicken favor from Nissin but packed in Cathay branding. Good taste and noodle’s quality.
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And then I spent another 3 hours for watching Wolf Hall. Mark Rylance is excellent!

Dinner was served in mid-flight (around 7 hours after takeoff). Personally I think it is too early to have a dinner. It would be better if it was served 3 more hours later.
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For the dinner except the vegetarian 2 choices were provided: meat-ball with rice in Shanghai style or mashed potato with fish in tomato sauce. I already have mashed potato for my lunch so I chose the meat ball.

The dinner is very fantastic especially the meat ball and rice even it is the second meal. It is the most delicious plane meal for my whole trip!
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The FA turned off the light again for resting and I continued listening music from IFE
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We were now approaching to Seattle and then incident occurred!
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Suddenly my IFE restarted followed by a Microsoft-like blue screen. The IFE hanged.

I walked around the cabin and tried to seek help form FAs but I could not find anyone or they might all be in rest lol

In order to kill my boredom, I walked around several times (still could not find any FAs lol), played my phone, filling water myself and even kept watching the airshow from the father’s IFE =P (At that time the couple were sleeping and they set their IFE to airshow)
I also tried napping for a while since I had never experienced long haul flight before and I am not very adapted to sleep on plane

Later I caught a male FA when the plane was in Idaho and I told him about this. He replied that he would fix it soon but then disappeared again lol

Finally the IFE restarted to normal when we were flying over Minnesota but it was about to land
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Passengers including the family around me woke up gradually and I started filling the custom declaration form.
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The father later chatted with me until landing. He mentioned that his son is now studying in Chicago and the whole family came here to visit him during summer holiday. He originally thought that I am a student studying in USA (Am I look so young really??? =P).

The plane was getting closer to ORD.
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Preparing landing
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Eventually the plane landed with heavy swinging. The father said this time Cathay did not land as well as he experienced before.
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Then the family and I came out of the gate and proceeded to the immigration. There were several planes arrived ORD at the same time and we had to wait for nearly an hour for clearing the custom. But the immigration staff was quite friendly. He just asked how long I would be in the USA and then let me to collect my baggage

Sadly the baggage carousel for my flight was out of order and the airport staff had to walk into the carousel in order to take the baggage out one by one lol

The arrival hall and my friend was already waiting for me!
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Outside Terminal 5
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We got on the airport transit to Terminal 3 for checking-in of next day flight to Minneapolis
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We then took the CTA Blue Line. Oh the central track is still under construction (you may know what happened before…)
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Finally I arrived the hostel in the Loop, took a night sleep and prepared for next day travel to Minneapolis.

I survived from the long TPAC flight! :Dv

Thank you so much for reading this report!
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Verdict

Cathay Pacific

8.5/10
Cabin9.0
Cabin crew8.0
Entertainment/wifi8.5
Meal/catering8.5

Hong Kong - HKG

9.2/10
Efficiency9.0
Access9.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness10.0

Chicago - ORD

8.9/10
Efficiency8.5
Access9.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness9.0

Conclusion

My first time on flying Cathay and very satisfied. The flight is on time. Cabin is new, clean and comfort with 3-3-3 configuration. IFE system and catering is good. Crews are professional and friendly but can be more initiative.

Information on the route Hong Kong (HKG) Chicago (ORD)

The contributors of Flight-Report published 3 reviews of 1 airlines on the route Hong Kong (HKG) → Chicago (ORD).


Useful

The airline with the best average rating is Cathay Pacific with 8.4/10.

The average flight time is 14 hours and 24 minutes.

  More information

6 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 147482 by
    Benoit75008 7283 Comments

    Thanks for this report,

    Really nice flight apparently and catering seems really tasty to me (great bonus concerning this ice cream too).

    How long was this flight? i guess they gave food too early (7 hours), otherwise you could rest more which would be better.

    See you

    • Comment 325926 by
      aussenrist AUTHOR 225 Comments

      Thanks for your comment Benoit.

      The flight lasts for 14.5 hours. I know that Cathay flights from HKG to East Coast of the USA i.e. JFK/EWR/BOS last about 30 minutes more than ORD but it serves one lunch/dinner and one breakfast before arrival. So I don't know why Cathay gives the second meal so early for the ORD flights even flying back to HKG.

  • Comment 147627 by
    KévinDC TEAM GOLD 5655 Comments

    Thanks for sharing your first report. You got lucky to get out of that middle seat! That would have been uncomfortable on a 14.5 hour flight! As usual, Cathay service stands out as way above average for Economy. Nice pictures.

    Welcome to Flight-Report!

  • Comment 148346 by
    NGO85 1622 Comments

    Thanks for sharing this report with us and welcome to the site!

    Still having time I tried getting into the Plaza premium lounge since I have free admission tickets but there are too many people and therefore I forgave it
    - I have been in this Lounge (used by MU) and it was too overcrowded. If the line was that long to get in when you were there, you were wise to wait.

    Suddenly one of the security staff came and stopped me and censored me to delete the photos.
    - So this is why you commented on my report. It's probably because they knew how to confront you in their native language.

    As Kevin said, I would absolutely hate to be stuck in a window or middle seat on a flight of this length. It's a prison sentence.

    What bizarre meal service times. Maybe the difference in meal time offerings is based on the time of departure. Based on my experience, they serve meals at HK time. So you got lunch and dinner served at the appropriate times since you land near 1am. I find the meal sizes to be a little small for a flight of this length, NH has fuller trays.

    That was an unusual approach you took into ORD with those two 90 degree turns.

    Sadly the baggage carousel for my flight was out of order and the airport staff had to walk into the carousel in order to take the baggage out one by one
    - Welcome to America!

    • Comment 326729 by
      aussenrist AUTHOR 225 Comments

      Thanks for your comment NGO85!

      - In HK many credit card issuers cooperated with Plaza Premium Lounge which cardholders can enjoy free access to the Lounge. Therefore there are too many people inside the lounge. Indeed I just wanted to take a bottle of water before boarding but for this situation I totally forgave it.

      - Or unluckily I just met a very diligent security staff on that day so sad.

      - You are right it was really a prison sentence because for the return I was stuck in the middle seat in addition I had an incident during the flight! (I will explain later).

      - The meal size might be a little bit small to other passengers too. Soon after lunch ended some passengers already ordered cup noodles.

      - Oh maybe this unusual approach led the plane landed with swinging heavily.

      - HAHA I heard the staff kept saying bad words on it :P

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