Review of China Eastern flight Xi'an Beijing in Economy

Airline China Eastern
Flight MU2123
Class Economy
Seat 23A
Aircraft Airbus A300-600
Flight time 01:40
Take-off 22 Apr 10, 08:00
Arrival at 22 Apr 10, 09:40
MU 172 reviews
marathon
By GOLD 1487
Published on 21st February 2016
This Flight Report was is a so-called archive report , using the few pictures I had taken before the launch of this website. I nevertheless found the original BP, in a thick unsorted pile of BPs of all dimensions and colors. The ones on thermal paper are sadly discoloring to oblivion, but all damage this one had was the blurring of the blue stamp at the BP check, possibly from Day 1 due to the nature of the thick paper.

photo IMG_0818a

The plane I flew that day makes even more of an archive, because MU does not operate A300-600s any more. This aircraft registered B-2330 entered service on 1 March 2003, some 30 years after the first one did, and was sold off by MU on 14 May 2015, according to Airfleets. I had not realized at time of flying that this was already an oddity in the Chinese skies, where latest technology aircraft are the norm.

photo P1310359a

She was only seven years old at time of boarding, but the central CRT IFE screens betrayed the age of her design.

photo P1310361aphoto P1310363a

Bad luck, there was a rather large group on that flight, easily recognizable thanks to their white caps that these vacationers were wearing. During the whole boarding process, they were calling each other so loud in all directions, th way the Chinese can sometimes do, that I felt like in a hen pen.

photo P1310360a

It was maybe the first flight for some of them, from the time they were taking reading the safety card that frequent flyers seldom care about (and because this was Year One Before Flight Report, I did not take a specific picture, but you have an idea there)

photo P1310362a

It was unusual for me to take a morning flight, and this was an opportunity to discover the Domestic Chinese flight version of a breakfast. It was not very exciting, but you don’t get that in Economy on a flight of that duration in Europe or the US.

photo P1310365a

According to the time-stamping of my pictures, the flight was perfectly on time, which was far from being the norm, then and now. I did not take pictures of the airport in Xi’an, but went to the toilets in PEK landside and discovered that the urinals were water free. Well, it was a interesting way to save water (Beijing’s growth exceeds its water supply potential), but quite frankly, these toilets stank.

photo P1310367a

This is the end of this archive flight report, and it is so short that I decided to pad it with a Chinese menu bonus. This had been a business trip, and the venue was in the most unexciting Chinese suburb I ever saw, in a developing area next to Xi’an’s third ring road, in poor weather, as exemplified by the view from my hotel room.

photo P1310330 panoa

The view from the hotel was dismal, but the dinner with my local partners was well worth the trip. Not for the good food which was served, but for the way it was listed in the menu. It had the most extraordinary collection of Chinglish I ever saw, and I thought it was worth sharing these quaint translations.

The translator provided unwearied effort on this one : 马面鱼, pronounced [Mǎmiàn yú] in Mandarin, is a leather jacket fish.

photo P1310782a

This eight fingernail fish looked like an octopus. Its nephew the squid’s son is very bashful.

photo P1310780-96a

Chicken feet are exactly that. This is a Chinese delicacy, and you have to be a native to appreciate it, IMO. The translator did not quite know the difference between shredding and ripping. 卤 can be halogen, but salt too, and the pork was simply salted.

photo P1310783a

In China, garlic is so strong that it can rip a sheep

photo P1310785a

I’m not sure there are salmons in the North Pole

photo P1310787aphoto P1310788a

We did not choose this salmon, on fears that it might rip our body. The Senate was indeed distant, and I did not check if it was punctured.

photo P1310789a

Would you have ten thousand emotions at the sight of this dish ?

photo P1310794a

Deity powder ? I admit not knowing what 神仙粉 was really.

photo P1310797a

I noted at the time that I chose "Fries you the surface", and there was expectedly enough hot pepper to fry you stomach surface if you weren’t trained for that.

photo P1310798a

On the other hand, the “burns the surface cake” was not burnt at all, and quite tasty

photo P1310800a

Even if your child is rotten, do not fry it !

photo P1310801a

The translator had 2D and 3D problems. In Chinese, 面 can mean "noodles" or “surface”, and 卷 can mean “volume” or “roll”. Also, in Chinese, diminutives are created by duplicating the word, and there is no explicit plural. 卷卷 are actually small rolls,

photo P1310802a

… and 棍棍面 are slightly sticky noodles, not a “stick stick surface”. The "manual surfaces" above are simply hand-made noodles.

photo P1310803a

Food is a lot more diverse (and tasty) in China than in Chinese restaurants abroad, and ordering it can be a lot more enjoyable. I hope you enjoyed this !
See more

Verdict

China Eastern

8.0/10
Cabin8.0
Cabin crew8.0
Entertainment/wifi7.0
Meal/catering9.0

Xi'an - XIY

8.6/10
Efficiency10.0
Access7.5
Services7.0
Cleanliness10.0

Beijing - PEK

9.2/10
Efficiency10.0
Access9.5
Services8.0
Cleanliness9.5

Conclusion

It was a decent domestic Chinese flight. The catering was not exciting, but you get much less in economy in most other places in the world on such a flight in Y.
XIY is rather far from the city, and does not have a rail link, as opposed to PEK.
Strictly speaking, the toilets in PEK (landside) were clean, but the stench was bothersome.

Information on the route Xi'an (XIY) Beijing (PEK)

Les contributeurs de Flight-Report ont posté 6 avis concernant 3 compagnies sur la ligne Xi'an (XIY) → Beijing (PEK).


Useful

La compagnie qui obtient la meilleure moyenne est Shandong Airlines avec 8.0/10.

La durée moyenne des vols est de 1 heures et 53 minutes.

  More information

9 Comments

If you liked this review or if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to post a comment below !
  • Comment 159033 by
    jetsetpanda 2283 Comments
    Thank you Marathon for sharing this vintage report. It brought back memories of the trips that I have taken aboard this special plane.

    The food bonus is fascinating but it is all lost in translation. ;) Great assortment of savory dishes, but when it comes to sweets Chinese are not known exactly for their desserts. Lately where I live Sichuanese and Hunanese restaurants are becoming trendy.
    • Comment 335879 by
      marathon GOLD AUTHOR 10093 Comments
      I have special memories with that type of plane too ;)

      The Chinese have so many delicious dishes that you can forget about their sweets and desserts which jsu tdo not compare, IMO... and apparently yours too.

      Thanks for stopping by !
  • Comment 159034 by
    Pilpintu TEAM 994 Comments
    Absolutely wonderful post. At long last can I see the reason for those crazy Chinese food names! They do make sense in Chinese!
    Would you be so kind and tell me the real meaning behind this disgraceful translation, please? Follow this link:
    http://s12.postimg.org/96rgxb4n1/bad_translation.jpg
  • Comment 159199 by
    NGO85 SILVER 1941 Comments
    Thank you for this throwback report Marathon!

    This aircraft registered B-2330 entered service on 1 March 2003, some 30 years after the first one did
    - Very weird to see such a new A300, I've never had the privilege to fly one, not a common sighting in the New World. The CRTs are at least an improvement over the overhead projectors still being used on the older B763s in the NH fleet.

    The ones on thermal paper are sadly discoloring to oblivion
    - Even some that are just a week old are almost gone. The modern day receipt boarding passes are quite a pity.

    discover the Domestic Chinese flight version of a breakfast
    - Doesn't look that bad, the vegetables in the bottom corner actually look quite nice.

    it was a interesting way to save water
    - These are quite common in the US, many places are using the water-free urinals.

    It always surprises me that Chinglish is so bad. Cases of Japanglish are few and far between. I noticed a couple weird signs recently in Sapporo, but they really aren't that bad. Normally just bad grammar and meaningless sentences using foreign words. Given the age of this report, I'm sure most places have rapidly Westernized and replaced all of these embarrassing signs.
    • Comment 336035 by
      marathon GOLD AUTHOR 10093 Comments
      Very weird to see such a new A300, I've never had the privilege to fly one, not a common sighting in the New World. The CRTs are at least an improvement over the overhead projectors still being used on the older B763s in the NH fleet.
      - I was mildly disappointed to discover that I had flown on a number of much older planes here and there. And yes, I was think thinking about these 763 CRT screens.

      discover the Domestic Chinese flight version of a breakfast
      Doesn't look that bad, the vegetables in the bottom corner actually look quite nice.
      - It was actually the Chinese version of a Western breakfast. I had a real Chinese airline breakfast last year and that was really different (yet another report in my To translate list...)

      It always surprises me that Chinglish is so bad. Cases of Japanglish are few and far between. I noticed a couple weird signs recently in Sapporo, but they really aren't that bad. Normally just bad grammar and meaningless sentences using foreign words. Given the age of this report, I'm sure most places have rapidly Westernized and replaced all of these embarrassing signs.
      - There was a massive cleanup of Chinglish before the Olympics, especially in the cities where they were held. But sometimes, you stumble upon a treasure trove which somehow survived this cultural genocide. In 2010, I was nevertheless amazed that the impeccably politically correct China Daily ran a tribune advocating the conservation of this cultural heritage, so there is hope that this unique language will survive the Westernization tidal wave ;)

      Thanks for your comment !
  • Comment 159246 by
    captain 109 Comments
    Good evening Marathon, pleasure to read your FR in a brilliant English!

    Add on that, you give some explanations with chinese caracters, I'm realy impresssed.

    I fill excited to read the next one with pics of Xi'an, you know why.

    merci, à bientôt

Login to post a comment.