Review of Cathay Pacific flight New York Hong Kong in Business

Airline Cathay Pacific
Flight CX845
Class Business
Seat 25K
Aircraft Boeing 777-300ER
Flight time 15:45
Take-off 24 Dec 17, 00:55
Arrival at 24 Dec 17, 05:40
CX   #4 out of 123 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 388 reviews
rbix
By SILVER 3006
Published on 20th August 2018
Hello everyone! Welcome to my 23rd trip report where I'll be covering my flight back to Hong Kong for the Christmas holidays. As always, I was planning on going back to Hong Kong along with the usual pit stop in Bangkok. However, the last two sectors are going to be a surprise as this was a last-minute, unexpected trip that was amazing in its own way. I don't want to leave out anymore details. So, stay tuned for the rest of this travel series! It's something worth waiting for!! Anyways, let's get on with the flight! ;)

Winter 2017-18 Trip Report Index:
1) 24 December 2017: CX845 JFK-HKG, B777-300ER, Business
2) 20 January 2018: CX653 HKG-BKK, A330-300, Business
3) 21 January 2018: EK377 BKK-DXB, A380-800, First
4) 25 January 2018: EK207 DXB-JFK, A380-800, First

Pre-flight


Here's a little backstory about booking this flight! So, I originally wanted to depart out of EWR due to the fact that Cathay Pacific is operating that route on the Airbus A350-900, and I would finally get a chance to try that aircraft on a long-haul flight compared to the one I took from BKK in 2016. Also, I prefer the departure out of EWR as it's a bit more private in the airport as well as the cabin. Unfortunately, the flight was completely full and I even called CX multiple times in order to get seats, but there were none.

Also, I tried getting flights on an earlier date such as the 22nd or the 23rd, but I couldn't get a seat. However, I was lucky yet again to get a seat on Christmas Eve. That way, I would arrive into Hong Kong just in time for Christmas.

So, I had no choice but to fly out from JFK on the good 'ol Boeing 777-300ER, an aircraft which I've flown for years. Honestly, I like flying on that aircraft, but now I'm starting to get tired of it. On the bright side, I finally get to see Cathay Pacific's new home in Terminal 8 as well as try out the American Airlines Flagship Lounge!

I left home at around 10:00 PM and arrived at John F. Kennedy International Airport, just in time to check out the new terminal
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Terminal 8 Departures exterior
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Terminal 8 Departures interior/departure lobby
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Cathay Pacific check-in counters. As always, the process of checking-in took 15 minutes.
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A huge Christmas tree!
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Heading towards security
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Post-security


The security process took 5 minutes to say the least as it was late at night and I think this was one of the late departing flights out of Terminal 8. Anyways, by the time I got to the airside, I was amazed with the design!
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The Big Apple
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American Airlines logo evolution
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Some duty-free shops
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A really cool sculpture at the terminal. From New York to the world!
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Terminal 8 Departures at JFK is quite massive, and has more variety in regards to shops and dining options compared to Terminal 7. I was quite impressed with the move!


Once I was done exploring the terminal, I headed to the American Airlines Flagship lounge, where the elevators are located a few meters after security
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Lounge invitation
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Lounge entrance
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A cool portrait of the Empire State Building
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Another portrait, but this time of Rockefeller Center
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FIDS
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Shots of the lounge


I eventually found a seat facing the tarmac
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Boarding pass
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Overall, the Flagship Lounge was fairly descent in regards to seating and atmosphere. Before entering the lounge, I heard this lounge was renovated and recently re-opened. I have to say, it did look astonishing!
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The only thing I have to complain about though is the catering, where the choices are quite limited and unappetising. I guess the saving grace would be the beverages, where there is a wide variety of both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.


Private booths
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More seating area. There wasn't a lot of people at the lounge during the time of my flight. I guess we were the only departing flight out of the terminal.
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Since I had plenty of time prior to the flight, I decided to sit back, relax, eat, listen to music, chat with my friends, and surf the web using the free WiFi
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Before I knew it, I realised it was time to board the plane.The walk to the gate was quite long as it was at another concourse at the terminal.


The journey consisted of going through an underground tunnel consisting of escalators. I guess that's my only con about the terminal


Plane to HKG: B-KPH
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The underground tunnel with a lot of advertising for the new Star Wars movie
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Heading towards gate 47
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Honestly, it was not that bad of a journey to the gate
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Gate 43-47 area
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The boarding process was really smooth this time!
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Time for yet another holiday!
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Heading down the aerobridges
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Well, time to board!
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Some pre-flight information:
Date: 24 December 2017
Airline: Cathay Pacific
Flight Number: CX 845
Route: New York (JFK) - Hong Kong (HKG)
Aircraft: Boeing 777-300ER
Registration: B-KPH
Distance: 8066 miles
Scheduled Departure Time: 12:55 AM
Actual Departure Time: 1:18 AM
Scheduled Arrival Time: 5:40 AM
Actual Arrival Time: 5:31 AM
Flight Time: 15 hrs 45 mins
Departure Gate at JFK: 47
Arrival Gate at HKG: 3

Inflight


Main business class cabin
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My seat: 25K, along with the inflight controls
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View from my seat
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The legroom on the Boeing 777-300ER
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Flight info
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Pre-departure drink: Orange juice
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I am ready for the next 15 hours!
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Hot towel
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Cabin view
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What I found a little weird was that the captain did not make any pre-flight announcement or any kind of welcome. The only time I heard him was when he instructed the cabin crew to be seated for both takeoff and landing, and yet again 30 minutes prior as well as preparing the cabin for arrival.

Regardless, we were able to pushback from the gates after approximately 20 minutes, which was the quickest I have ever seen from JFK!
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Amenity kit
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Crystal Geyser water bottle
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One of the reasons why I like departing out of EWR was primarily because of the on-time departure because from what I've previously experienced at JFK, there are constant delays due to heavy traffic at the airport, which can heavily disrupt travel plans.

However, I was able to set some views prior to departure
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Mood lighting changes in preparation for takeoff
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Two windows all to myself! ;)
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Visiting the old quarters (a.k.a. Terminal 7)
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Passing by Terminal 5
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Menus were then distributed as we were still taxiing towards the runway
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Menu for today's flight
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Taxiing to Runway 31L, with the view of the Lower Manhattan skyline in the distance along with China Airlines Boeing 777-300ER B-18052 also on its way to the runway serving as CI11 back to TPE
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Surprisingly, we took off at 1:18 AM, which has been the earliest departure I've been a part of at JFK!
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Heading towards Connecticut
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Peace out, America!
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To cut to the chase, the choice of entertainment on this flight was quite disappointing in regards to my usual TV comedies
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At least I was able to watch a few episodes of New Girl
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Another view of the inflight controls
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A slight change towards the mood lighting
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After approximately 10 minutes, the crew came towards the cabin taking drink orders as well as setting the tables for the dinner service.

Perrier, a.k.a. my standard drink!
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Table setup including the appetiser, fresh berries, and garlic bread
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This time, I opted for the light meal option as I wasn't feeling that hungry as I had dinner prior to leaving the airport. IMO, this is not the proper way to serve soup, especially for a 5-star airline like CX. This was a disappointment. Nevertheless, the soup was actually pretty good.
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Cabin views
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I was done in 20 minutes when the crew courteously cleared the table for us and then distributed hot towels as an end to the dinner service along with the subsequent mood lighting change
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Once the dinner service was over, I headed to the bathroom with the standard J sink
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At that point of time, I switched to the inflight map to find out our current location
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Afterwards, the mood lighting switched again until it led to complete darkness, giving it the perfect environment for passengers to rest
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After looking for more programs to watch during the flight, I came across with La La Land, which is one of my favourite movies. I must say, it did make up for the missing inflight entertainment
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I watched a bit of of the movie before I ultimately decided to call it a night

Heading towards Greenland
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Only 12 more hours to go!
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Within less than 5 minutes, I was able to set the seat in a fully flat position with the duvet all nicely spread out. Before I knew it, I was sleeping on one of the comfiest business class seats in the world!
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I woke up after 8 hours upon discovering that we already were heading close towards Mongolia. I woke up realising that I was craving for something to eat. So, I requested one of the flight attendants for the wonton noodle soup, which is nothing but a CX classic! As always, I added a Perrier to go along with it.
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Cabin views
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I eventually went back to finishing La La Land. After all, it's one of my favourite all-time movies

Before
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After
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The high life in the sky! ;)
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Another round of Perrier!
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The noodles taste a lot better with the chilli sauce. It really brings out the flavour!
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I then continued to watch La La Land once I was done with my noodles.
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It wasn't until 25 minutes later when the cabin lights came back on and I was handed a hot towel, which was about 2 hours from arrival.
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Orange juice for starters
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Table setup including fresh fruit and a croissant
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I ended up watching yet another movie onboard this flight, Hidden Figures. It is yet another Oscar-nominated movie which I believe deserves more praise and acclaim.
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Blueberry Greek yogurt
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Above central China
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For the main course, I chose the Singaporean fried noodles. It was good, but the chilli sauce was definitely the saving grace.
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Hot towel to end the breakfast service
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My seat after 14 hours
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Cabin views, with mood lighting yet again
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Once I got back to my seat, I decided to continue watching Hidden Figures

After half an hour, I checked the inflight map again only to find out that we were already starting the descent towards HKG
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That was also when the captain came back on just to say that we had 30 minutes until we landed. Suddenly, the seat belt sign came back on giving the indication that we had to prepare for landing, which didn't take long.
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Arrival information
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Approaching HKG
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Final shots before landing


What I found strange was that there was no mood light change during the landing
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We landed approximately 10 minutes ahead of schedule at 5:31 AM. The taxi to the gate was quite short.
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Actual flight route
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Docking at gate 3
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Post-flight


Disembarking
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Mini business class cabin
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First class
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Arrival into HKG


The walk to immigration was quite short as well.


Cathay Pacific Boeing 777-300ER, B-KQH, which just arrived as CX883 from LAX
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Cathay Pacific Airbus A350-900, B-LRC, which just arrived as CX676 from TLV
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As always, I breezed through immigration, got my bag, and made it to the arrival hall within 10 minutes
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Baggage claim area
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As always, I was able to get my bag within 5 minutes


Making my way towards the arrival hall
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I made it just in time for Christmas!!
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Before heading back home, I went on to The Arrival lounge, which can be quite tricky to find as I had to go through Terminal 2
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However, it was not a long walk from the arrival hall as I took a different way than I did the last few times
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Entrance to The Arrival
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Lounge invitation
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Shots of The Arrival lounge
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Afterwards, I made it towards the Airport Express


Airport Express interior
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After less than 25 minutes, I arrived at Central/Hong Kong station, where I immediately caught a taxi afterwards and made my journey from there.
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As always, it feels good to be back!! :)
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See more

Verdict

Cathay Pacific

8.5/10
Cabin9.5
Cabin crew8.5
Entertainment7.5
Meal/catering8.5

American Airlines Flagship Lounge

8.5/10
Comfort10.0
Meal/catering6.5
Entertainment9.0
Services8.5

New York - JFK

8.8/10
Efficiency8.0
Access8.5
Services8.5
Cleanliness10.0

Hong Kong - HKG

10.0/10
Efficiency10.0
Access10.0
Services10.0
Cleanliness10.0

Conclusion

Overall, this flight was better than from what I expected. In fact, I was surprised that there were some service enhancements from when I flew with them back in July 2017, which was quite a disappointment. Maybe it was the Christmas season, but I somehow enjoyed this flight on Cathay Pacific. The departure process from JFK Terminal 8 was actually better than I expected, especially with the terminal itself.

I found the crew much nicer than the July flight and the meal service was better as well. The only thing that I found discouraging was the way it was being served on, especially with soup in a cup. I found that to be a bit disappointing. Even though the entertainment choices were quite limited, especially with the lack of my usual shows, I was able to make use of the choices and watch some Oscar-nominated movies, especially La La Land and Hidden Figures.

Nevertheless, thank you so much for reading this trip report. I hope you've enjoyed it. Tune in next time for the next segment where I hope I'll be flying somewhere (which is going to be a huge surprise) along with the usual stopover in Bangkok!

Informations on the route New York (JFK) Hong Kong (HKG)

The contributors of Flight-Report published 5 reviews of 1 airlines on the route New York (JFK) → Hong Kong (HKG).


Useful

The airline with the best average grade is with /10.

The average flight time is 16.0 hours and 57.0 minutes.

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4 Comments

  • Comment 460888 by
    STAR-ALLIANCE-FLYER 37 Comments

    The meal looks EXTREMELY DISAPPOINTING, that;s common for all CX J class passengers. Red eye flight and day flight are all the same. Haven;t you noticed that CX and EK are similar? The J product itself is nothing to write home about..... The only impression is their lounge, you have to admit htat EK and CX lounge food, is far better than food onboard, at least for J CLASS..... So CX basically use lounge to let you have a perfect first impression. That's it, nothing else!! To me CX is even worse than TG and NH

    • Comment 462133 by
      rbix SILVER AUTHOR 55 Comments

      Thanks for the comment. Well, from what I’ve experienced on this flight, I would say that the inflight catering was actually better than the lounge. Although I would say that the portions are quite disappointing, I just hope CX would implement that in the near future, especially with the new dining concept they are planning to introduce soon.

  • Comment 461339 by
    hometoyyz SILVER 311 Comments

    Thanks for another look at your commuter route. I guess there are worse ways to shuttle back and forth between NYC and Hong Kong than CX J. ;-)

    I have to agree with SAF, though, that the food looks disappointing.

    And I've always wondered about CX's 77W J seat. It looks like the same J seat I flew on an MU A330 -- which I presumed was a reverse herringbone seat slightly downgraded to accommodate the narrow A330 fuselage.... but here it is, on a nice wide 77W with the same lack of storage as I saw on the narrower A330. It just seems so... unnecessarily cramped compared to an otherwise similar seat from, say AC or CI, on the 77W. Heck... I even kinda feel like it has less storage/space than DL's A330 J product. It seems silly to quibble over the details of an all-aisle-access flat bed J seat, but this really does look "less premium" than some competing products to me.

    Just my $.02. And despite the complaining, I'd still like to fly CX J someday. I keep meaning to do it. And then I remember what I can have for just 20k more miles....

    • Comment 462134 by
      rbix SILVER AUTHOR 55 Comments

      Thanks for the comment! Well, I have to admit that I'm getting slightly tired of flying CX, but it's one of my best options when it comes to flying to my home bases. I haven't really got the chance to try out either of these airlines, but I have been wanting to fly on CI for some time and compare the J class on their 77W with CX. After all, it wouldn't hurt to see what the catering, crew services, entertainment choices are like and see which is better.

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