I booked this flight using 25,000 Asia miles, plus about $250 CAD in taxes and fees per person. Flights that clock in between 750 and 2751 miles cost 25,000 Asia Miles in J. This flight is 2494 miles in length so it certainly was good value, being at the top end of the bracket. Had I booked the direct flight to Male, not only would it end up getting cancelled, but it would have costed 45,000 miles, being in the 2751-5000 mile bracket.
We arrived to a very deserted Hong Kong airport at about 5am, and went through immigration. At immigration, after being asked about our travel history in the past 14 days, we were let in. We headed to baggage claim where our bags were the first ones out. Was unsure whether we could use the F checkin, since we were connecting from F to J, but the staff had no issues checking us in there. We were offered first class lounge invitations, but did not receive a courtesy card which we did receive when we flew CX F last year out of HKG. Not that it was necessary in this case, since it only took five minutes to get through security. Every traveller's temperature was checked by airport employees individually using a thermometer at security.
Unfortuanetly since February 17th, Cathay's Pier F lounge has been closed, so we had access to their Wing F lounge. The lounge is about a minute walk from security, and you just turn left and you reach the lounge. For the 13 hours we were in the lounge, it was deserted. At max in the main seating area pictured below, there were 6 people, but it was just us most of the time. This was due to the decrease in demand due to the Coronavirus.
The bar area
I ordered a Cathay delight from the staff at the bar, and it was as refreshing as I expected it to be, very.
The lounge had several MacBook's and desks, where I finished an essay I had due.
The lounge still empty a few hours later.
I made use of the Cabana in the lounge, which is absolutely massive. Do any other airlines have something similar in their lounges?
We ended up eating lunch in the Wing, which offered a very slim menu of only about four main courses. I went with the Spinach ricotta ravioli and it was good, but nothing like the food in Pier F.
Our gate was directly across from the lounge. Boarding began on time for our flight, with Oneworld Emerald passengers being able to board first, followed by business. I attempted to use the OneWorld/First Class boarding line with my F boarding pass from my previous flight, but I was sent to the J line.
This flight was one of the emptiest flights I've personally witnessed, with only 13 seats occupied in the 39 seat business class cabin.
Economy had an even smaller load factor, with just 29 seats occupied in the cabin of this a330-300, meaning each passenger got a row to them self.
When we entered the plane, after the two OWE sitting in Y, we were greeted by the service director for the flight, a very energetic women who encouraged us to sit in seats 2A, 3A, and 4A instead of our seats in the mini-cabin to make the service easier for the crew.
CX has an average business class on their long haul planes with reverse herringbone seats, all of which offer direct aisle access.
A duvet and pillow were both offered.
The captain made his welcome remarks, and announced the flight time of just over 5 hours. About 20 minutes after takeoff, the meal service began. Menus were handed out on the ground.
The shrimp appetizer was alright, and it was certainly lacking flavour. The garlic bread was great, and the salad was well dressed.
The main course was incredible, and I was very happy that I chose the Indian dish. It had just the right amount of spice. I requested more yogurt, and the staff brought me a few more containers, which I welcomed.
A simple yet filling cheese plate was the perfect ending to the meal, after which I slept for a few hours.
Sri Lankan line up in Colombo
After landing, we headed to customs once we passed through a temperature check. The staff manning the computers at the temperature check were chatting, and their eyes were not even looking at the screen, unfortunately. We passed through customs quickly, since there was no line. I forgot to grab a picture, but all the priority bags came out first with a sign labelled Priority baggage. It was there by the time we showed up at baggage claim, which was about fifteen minutes post-disembarkation.
The Cathay Wing F was spectacular, apart from the food offerings. The flight was exactly as I expected it to be, and I look forward to flying CX J again in the future, perhaps on a longer route to NA or Europe. It makes sense why Cathay has cut so many of their global flights, considering how empty the flight and lounge were. Thanks for reading this flight-report. Next one will be from Colombo to Male aboard Sri Lankan business class.