Review of Thai Airways flight Bangkok Sydney in First

Airline Thai Airways
Flight TG475
Class First
Seat 1A
Aircraft Boeing 747-400
Flight time 10:00
Take-off 24 Aug 17, 19:20
Arrival at 25 Aug 17, 08:20
TG   #7 out of 112 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 254 reviews
Rewardflying
By 1456
Published on 7th October 2017
photo tg475 cover

Greetings Flight-Report #avgeeks. After a night to refresh in Bangkok it was off to Australia via Thai Airways Royal First 747 service along with a few hours respite in their Royal First Lounge and Spa.

jetBlue A320 Ecomomy service ORD-JFK
Singapore Airlines A380 Suites Class JFK-FRA / JFK Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse
Singapore Airlines Suites Class FRA-SIN / FRA Air Canada Lounge
Thai Airways A350 Business Class SIN-BKK / SIN The Private Room

Thai Airways B747 First Class BKK-SYD / BKK Thai Royal First Lounge and Spa
Air New Zealand B787 Business Class SYD-AKL / SYD Air New Zealand Lounge
Air New Zealand A320 Economy Class AKL-WLG / AKL Air New Zealand Domestic Lounge
JetStar A320 Economy Class WLG-AKL
Emirates A380 Business Class AKL-BNE / AKL Emirates Lounge
Qantas B737 Business Class BNE-SYD / BNE Priority Pass Lounge
American Airlines B777 First Class SYD-LAX / SYD Qantas First Class Lounge
Virgin America A320 First Class LAX-ORD

Having flown Thai's 747 last year on a business class ticket sitting in a first class seat, I was anxious to try the real first class experience along with the Thai Royal First Class Lounge and Spa. And the price was right. Only 40,000 points, an amazing deal for an 8 hour flight. Unfortunately that deal goes away 11/1/2017 when the UA price becomes 65,000 points.

I arrived by Uber from downtown Bangkok in plenty of time to enjoy a few hours in the lounge and receive the complimentary one hour massage treatment.

photo tg475 checkin 2

After being handed my boarding pass I turned around and a young man was waiting to escort me through security and over to the lounge.

photo tg475 checkin 3

Thai has a special reception area for premium class passengers down an escalator beyond the check-in area and security screening.

photo tg475 checkin 4

I cleared security and my Mercedes was waiting to whisk me off to the lounge.

photo tg475 checkin 5

In no time we motored up to the entrance blocking all traffic.

photo tg475 checkin 6

You can find a full report of The Thai Aiways Royal First Lounge and Spa using this link to rewardflying.com

Here are some photos from that report:

Main Lounge:



Dining Area



Lounge Facilities



Spa Facilities



Recommendation, GO!

After my massage I'd returned to my assigned semi-private room in the lounge for about 20 minutes. Then about 30 minutes before boarding a Thai representative gathered myself and one other passenger who was traveling first class on the flight down to Sydney. The gate was a two minute walk so there was no Porsche golf cart to take us there.

Departures are a level down so we went down the ramp with the Thai representative pulling the carry-on bags for both first class passengers. We passed secondary screening, cutting in front of the line. General boarding had already commenced. The representative escorted us past everyone waiting to board inside the terminal and inside the jetway, which is somewhat embarrassing. Then this. The nose of a 747. Fantastic!

photo tg475 cabin 1

747 overhead bins are small. With no chance my carry-on would fit, the cabin crew collected my bag upon entry and stored it. Thai has two 747 cabin layouts. The new version has more private seats. The way you can tell is in row 2 there's only a single seat. This version is flown on the overnight flight to Sydney, whereas the morning daytime flight has the older seats. So the new version has 9 seats in first and old version has 10 seats left of door 1.

photo tg475 cabin 3

A view of seats 2A/3A and the lower deck business class cabin behind the door. A thick curtain closes off business from first during the flight.

photo tg475 cabin 2

Seat 1A as presented upon arrival.

photo tg475 seat 1

Storage under the ottoman was big enough for my duffle bag as well as the packaged Thai bedding.

photo tg475 seat 2

While this compartment is not fully enclosed, the seats have plenty of privacy, especially row one.

photo tg475 seat 3

Plus you can't beat the view from row one!

photo tg475 seat view 2photo tg475 seat view 3

The suite has a good size monitor (I'm guessing 22-24 inches), and it's touchscreen but you need to use the controller if sitting down. Unfortunately Thai's entertainment selection is limited. 

photo tg475 seat ife

The compartment has a convenient closet and usable mirror. 

photo tg475 seat storage 2

There is plenty of storage along the window with this compartment being the forward one which also holds all the reading material. Another compartment is adjacent the seat. 

photo tg475 seat storage 1

A touch screen panel adjusts the seat seating as well as lighting. 

photo tg475 seat contol 2

After dinner my flight attendant prepared the bed using the package under the ottoman. It included a mattress pad, plush duvet, blanket and larger pillow. The bed was comfortable and I slept well. As you can see, the armrests are lowered when in horizontal position. 

photo tg475 seat bed 1

A Thai Rimowa amenity kit and headphone were neatly placed on arrival. 

photo tg475 amenity kit

Not Bose but not bad. The issue was IFE content, not equipment. 

photo tg475 amenity hp

Two pillows along with the larger sleeping pillow were provided. 

photo tg475 amenity pillow

A bevy of reading material was offered at each seat. Although I'm not sure the appeal of Homes and Garden, at least for me. 

photo tg475 amenity read 1

My cabin attendant was a lovely woman named Chanidnart. She would prove to be one of my favorite attendants along with her partner who prepared the food and beverage for the two first class passengers.  A cool towel was offered upon my arrival as was something to drink, which I declined until after take-off, as well as a chocolate which I saved for later.

photo tg475 amenity welcome 1photo tg475 amenity welcome 2

Chanidnart soon came around with a package for me. 

photo tg475 amenity pj  1

These are nice as they aren't too warm and are a quality garment. 

photo tg475 amenity pj 2

And while in the stock 747 lavatory here is a photo of some refreshing sprays offered, but not used by me. The lavatory was stocked with cloth hand towels.

photo tg475 amenity lav 1

Right on time we pushed and were lined up in minutes. After two departures on an A380, this 747, which had a few more miles on it, didn't allow you to forget what was happening outside like the A380s do. Or it was just a bumpy runway in Bangkok. Today's flight was courtesy of a 16 year old 747-400, HS-TGA.

photo tg475 plane age

Time for dinner, and some champagne. While Thai may not be at the top echelon of international first class carriers, no one can complain about their champagne selection up front. 

photo tg475 bev champ 1photo tg475 bev champ 2

The menu was distributed.

photo tg475 menu cover 1photo tg475 menu cover 2

Beverages



Okay, maybe a little narrow, but…

Four dinner selections, not bad for two people in first. I wonder if they stocked all? I chose the veal chop which was on board. 

photo tg475 menu food 1

While reading the menu Chanidnart offered a plate full of snacks, or canapes. Nuts, dried fruit, some kind of mousse on a cracker and something wrapped in a leaf which was hard. I passed on all. 

photo tg475 food - nuts 1

Next, following in Singapore Airlines tradition of no tablecloth , Thai's version of satay was offered. Seems like they copied them on the plates as well, or vise versa. 

photo tg475 food app satay 1

Good, but a tad greasy. 

photo tg475 food app satay 2

Plentiful and delicious. 

photo tg475 food app satay 4

Next was the mystery course. No one knew what it was. Chanidnart said they sometimes catering loads a surprise dish like this without telling the crew. I'm not sure I believe that but I tried it and it was really good. I think it was made with large tapioca pearls.

photo tg475 food app mystery 1

I mean, when traveling abroad it's not like you know what everything is you eat, right? And I made it to Sydney so all is well.

photo tg475 food app mystery 2

Another step up by Thai is caviar in first class. I would not be declining today.

photo tg475 food app cav 1

I had my choice of accompaniments for those wondering. I was offered chilled vodka as well. The only disappointment was crackers and not bilinis. 

photo tg475 food app cav 2

Next was a foie gras and roasted winter vegetable salad. It sounded good. 

photo tg475 food salad 1

Woah, lots going on here. Lots! I passed. 

photo tg475 food salad 2

Redemption was to follow. Cream of celeriac soup.

photo tg475 food app soup 1

OMG!

photo tg475 food app soup 2

So this 29,591 mile venture consisting of 12 flights with 9 different carriers and many meals, I think this soup was the best individual course of any. It was incredibly good! Chanidnart had told me I'd enjoy it, she was right!

photo tg475 food app soup 4

So with the caviar and soup along with the mystery item I was a happy camper. How would the veal chop turn out? 

photo tg475 food main 1

It was very good, outstanding, no but I'd get it again. I think they just tried to do too much with it, all the different mushrooms, hazelnuts and so forth. It was more like an Asian first class meal versus a Singapore Airlines first class meal.

photo tg475 food main 4

As you can tell I ordered the Chateau Camensac blend to go with it. 



I was prepared to skip dessert but Chanidnart insisted, suggesting the sticky rice with mango and coconut cream was excellent. So I caved.

photo tg475 food des 1

And now we know why she insisted! What a nice thought. Chanidnart said it was prepared by her assistant in the galley. I don't recall his name but she said he was a few weeks from retiring, having been with Thai for over 30 years. I met him when we arrived in Sydney and thanked him for this special dessert. You have to love your job to still do something like this after 30 years. 

photo tg475 food des 2

Stuffed it was time to sleep. 

I awoke a little over an hour out of Sydney with my channel was set to the preferred selection. 

photo tg475 ife 1photo tg475 ife 2

On of the beauties when flying overnight, sunrise. I wonder what planet that is out my window? 

photo tg475 scenic sunrise

Time to eat, again. For breakfast four choices were available just like four choices for the main meal. 

photo tg475 menu food 2

I thought I'd take it easy and just have some fruit, yogurt and soft boiled eggs. 

photo tg475 food brk 1

I didn't expect the huge tray to be filled with food!



11 different fruits.

photo tg475 food brk 6

Soft boiled egg on an airplane. This is a first.
photo tg475 food brk 9

Impressive.
photo tg475 food brk 11

Sunrise turned into full sun with a glare that obscured beautiful Sydney on arrival. 

photo tg475 scenic syd 1

It's an amazing view from the air, sun or no sun. 

photo tg475 scenic syd 3

Touchdown was a few minutes ahead of schedule. 

photo tg475 scenic syd 2

As we taxied to the gate I was wondering if this SQ A380 was my JFK A380. No, but my A380 had been in Sydney only to have departed a few hours earlier. However at least now I can say I've been on a Singapore A380 when I take a photo of one at some airport.  

photo tg475 scenic syd sq

Upon departure I was handed a Gold Track express card for immigration. 

photo tg475 amenity fast track

Here is a photo of the Thai B747 getting refreshed for the trip back to Bangkok taken from the New Zealand lounge after arrival. 

photo tg475 scenic syd tg 1

Flight Path

photo tg475 flight path

Visit rewardflying.com for ratings and more information on this trip.

Thai B747 business class in a first class seat on rewardflying.com

Thai A380 first class on rewardflying.com
See more

Verdict

Thai Airways

7.6/10
Cabin7.5
Cabin crew8.5
Entertainment7.0
Meal/catering7.5

Thai Airways Royal First Class Lounge

8.3/10
Comfort8.0
Meal/catering8.0
Entertainment7.0
Services10.0

Bangkok - BKK

8.1/10
Efficiency9.0
Access7.0
Services8.5
Cleanliness8.0

Sydney - SYD

8.4/10
Efficiency9.0
Access7.0
Services8.5
Cleanliness9.0

Conclusion

This was a great trip and for 40,000 points even better (I still had an Air New Zealand 787 flight on this ticket as well). While the Thai Royal First Lounge cosmetically may have seen better days, the Spa experience made up for that ten fold. Thai Airways treats their first class customers as well as any international carrier, from check-in to exit of the aircraft (when arriving in Bangkok they pick you up and take you to security in their version of a Mercedes). Personally I like the 747 over their A380 but maybe I just had a subpar experience on the later last year. They have above average amenities where IFE content is the main deficiency. Food and beverage while not 5 star, you could easily give it a 4-star rating. The crews I've had have always been pleasant and this crew was above board nice, That personalized dessert was a first for me. Now if only they would have made those A350 seats a little bigger..... Off to New Zealand.

Related

6 Comments

  • Comment 415557 by
    indianocean 4813 Comments

    I was never impressed with Thai First Class catering but I have to admit that the flight you had to Sydney was quite good and better than I expected.
    Your writing skills might also explain that.

    What about the service? It was very thoughtful

    Very nice views before landing

    Thank you for sharing

      0
  • Comment 415642 by
    Rewardflying AUTHOR 268 Comments

    Hi Indianocean,

    Thanks for reading and your comments. Cabin attendants on every Thai flight I've had have been great. They are always attentive while treating you with respect. Plus they all seem to really enjoy their job as well.

    I think Sydney is the most beautiful city to fly into. An upcoming post on a Qantas flight into SYD has some spectacular views. Thanks again!

      0
  • Comment 415690 by
    dreamweaver888 13 Comments

    I'm impressed with Thai's cuisine in F! I like their 747 seats as well.

      0
  • Comment 415716 by
    Razza_Pr 164 Comments

    Greetings, Rewardflying, and thank you for this FR.

    TG's F ground experience still hot, I see. Soft product aside, I think the lounge is starting to show its age. I don't know, maybe because QR has redefined what a lounge should be like, and other airlines should keep up?

    "A thick curtain closes off business from first during the flight."
    -Check out that bare metal though.

    "Nuts, dried fruit, some kind of mouse on a cracker and something wrapped in a leaf which was hard."
    -Remembering how ~exotic~ food in Asia can be (especially the street foods), I genuinely gasped upon reading 'mouse'. Might one say misleading? :P

    "Next was a foie gras and roasted winter vegetable salad. It sounded good."
    -That looks more like winter salad with foie gras.

    " It was more like an Asian first class meal versus a Singapore Airlines first class meal."
    -Back to green asparagus though, thankfully.

    "I was prepared to skip dessert but Chanidnart insisted, suggesting the sticky rice with mango and coconut cream was excellent. So I caved."
    -Talk about high level of personalisation! Stellar kudos to the crew member for having presented the dish like that.

    "I thought I'd take it easy and just have some fruit, yogurt and soft boiled eggs."
    -Iced beverage to complement your breakfast?

    "I didn't expect the huge tray to be filled with food!"
    -You're killing me with that close-up of the flower-shaped butter.

    What a steal for only 40k miles!

    Thanks again for this FR. Cheers!

      0
    • Comment 415745 by
      Rewardflying AUTHOR 268 Comments

      Greetings Razza, Hope you're well.
      >TG's F ground experience still hot, I see. Soft product aside, I think the lounge is starting to show its age. I don't know, maybe because QR has redefined what a lounge should be like, and other airlines should keep up?
      -Yeah, a trip back to the 70's was my take.
      >Nuts, dried fruit, some kind of mouse on a cracker and something wrapped in a leaf which was hard."
      Remembering how ~exotic~ food in Asia can be (especially the street foods), I genuinely gasped upon reading 'mouse'. Might one say misleading? :P
      -LOL spell check or freudian slip. Either way not eaten and corrected!
      >That looks more like winter salad with foie gras.
      -Permit my take, disgusting.
      >Talk about high level of personalisation! Stellar kudos to the crew member for having presented the dish like that.
      -Agreed, this was a great crew. What impressed me is both cabin attendants truly enjoyed their job.
      >Iced beverage to complement your breakfast?
      -Leave it to you to call me out on that! I truly don't remember what it was. When writing the report I thought to myself was that the yogurt but it couldn't have been as it looks like ice cubes in the glass. So I'm at a loss. Must have been something maybe with coconut milk in it. And it probably was good as I do remember being impressed with the breakfast.
      >What a steal for only 40k miles!
      -With a Spa treatment to boot!!!
      Blurry eyed - Air New Zealand across the Tasman next. Thanks for reading!

        0

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