Review of Asiana Airlines flight Seattle Seoul in Business

Airline Asiana Airlines
Flight OZ 271
Class Business
Seat 3D
Aircraft Airbus A330-300
Flight time 12:00
Take-off 23 Nov 13, 13:00
Arrival at 23 Nov 13, 18:00
OZ   #22 out of 133 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 91 reviews
jetsetpanda
By 21925
Published on 2nd December 2013
I arrived in SEA with plenty of time and decided to visit the UA Club. Last time I was here, the UA Club was an enclosed room without any views at another terminal. Things have changed.

I approached the reception desk and a nice agent scanned my boarding pass and welcomed me inside. The new UA lounge has a stylish feel with plenty of light coming in. Snacks were minimum consisting of cereal, some pastries, fruits and beverages.

Entrance

photo UA Club SEA (1) (900x569)


Conference room next to reception area

photo UA Club SEA (5) (900x612)


Hallway next to reception area

photo UA Club SEA (4) (900x600)


Bar

photo UA Club SEA (2) (900x608)


Pantry

photo UA Club SEA (3) (900x595)photo UA Club SEA (6) (900x603)


Interior

photo UA Club SEA (7) (900x580)photo UA Club SEA (9) (900x591)


I did not eat anything because I wanted to save room for the lunch onboard. After checking the place out, I left for the International Terminal and headed to the British Airways Terraces lounge, which Asiana uses in SEA. At the reception desk, I was asked by the agent to go down to the gate and have them reissue a boarding pass and lounge invitation. When I checked in at the UA kiosk in SFO, I was given a pass for the OZ portions and thought that I could use them to access the lounge in SEA. No big deal and the nice agent at the gate even tried to give me a seat without a neighbor, so I was moved to 3D from 5D.

With the proper documents, I was allowed into the BA Terraces and thought that the place was compact and comfy. There was an assortment of packaged snacks, hot chicken soup option with breads and some instant ramen noodles. There was plenty of light coming from the big windows but the view of the tarmac was somewhat hindered by the layout of the terminal.


Entrance

photo BA Terraces SEA (1) (900x596)


Interior

photo BA Terraces SEA (2) (900x586)photo BA Terraces SEA (17) (900x556)


Snacks




OZ 271 SEA - ICN J/C
Seat 3D - EQP A330-300
Dept. 1300 (Actual 1339) - Arriv. 1800 (Actual 1808)


At the BA Terraces, the OZ agent announced a delay and advised passengers to relax until she makes a boarding announcement. Once the announcement was made, I headed downstairs and bypassed the long Y line. Upon entering the aircraft, I was greeted by two flight attendants and one of them escorted me to my seat. The cabin was festively decorated and there were already a slipper, amenity kit, blanket and headphone on each seat. My amenity kit was missing so I grabbed the one from the empty neighboring seat. Before the door closed, the OZ station manager wished every J passenger a good trip and apologized for the delay.



The purser introduced herself to each J passenger and also apologized about the delay. The pilot also made an announcement explaining that the delay was due to some connecting passengers and gave an apology too. FA's distributed pre-departure drinks that consisted of water, orange juice or champagne followed by custom forms and hot towels that were lightly scented.


Cabin

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (2) (900x548)photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (1) (900x628)


Amenities on seat

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (7) (900x600)


Amenity kit

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (52) (900x600)photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (53) (900x600)



Welcome message

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (3) (900x600)


Pre-departure drink

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (4) (900x599)


After take off, menus were distributed and moments later a FA introduced herself asking for passenger's choices. I saw that she took her time in explaining some of the courses to those who were undecided while kneeling down and looking up to customers.




Wine menu





The FA asked for my drink and meal choices. A bit later she came back with my pineapple juice and the canapes while setting up the table. I must comment that throughout the whole time FA's were always polite and efficient.




Later the appetizer cart made its way and the FA set a plate with two zucchini pancakes. For those who ordered Western meals they received a Prosciutto, crab claw and vegetables appetizer.

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (18) (900x713)photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (19) (900x534)


This was followed by a pumpkin porridge

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (24) (900x586)


Bibimbap set up including a brochure on how to enjoy this dish




Bibimbap tray with kimchi, pickled radish, soup and small dried fish




After the meal the dessert cart followed with a choice of hot beverages

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (36) (900x608)photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (35) (900x600)


Korean cookies

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (37) (900x600)


I requested the praline cake with a cup of hot tea

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (38) (900x600)photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (39) (900x600)


At the conclusion of the meal service, FA's place a padding thing on the footrests, distributed bottles of water and patrolled the cabin to make sure that passengers did not need anything else. The galley was set up with a plate of chocolates, mix nuts and liquor.

Padding on footrest

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (40) (900x600)


Galley




WC supplied with combs, toothbrushes, L'Occitane The Vert perfume, facial mist and moisturizing lotion

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (42) (900x600)



Midflight I had the Korean ramen as a snack. The FA asked if I wanted it mild or spicy and I opted for spicy. It was served with a side of kimchi and pickled radish.




This was finished with a cup of ginseng tea

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (51) (900x628)


Before arriving into ICN, the last meal started with a hot towel service followed by the cart to set up the tables.




Warm breads were offered from a basket and the choices were Stir Fried Seafood, Beef Stroganoff OR Shrimp Broccoli Porridge. I had the Stir Fried Seafood served with fish veloute sauce, steamed rice and vegetables.

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (57) (900x600)


Squid Salad and Grilled Scallop

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (58) (900x600)photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (59) (900x600)


Stir Fried Seafood

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (60) (900x575)


Dessert

photo OZ 271 SEA-ICN (62) (900x600)

At the conclusion of the meal service, another round of hot towels followed. Before arrival into ICN, FA's passed around asking each passenger if they enjoyed the flight and thanking them for flying with OZ.


See more

Verdict

Asiana Airlines

8.8/10
Cabin8.0
Cabin crew10.0
Entertainment/wifi8.5
Meal/catering8.5

British Airways Terraces

7.8/10
Comfort7.5
Meal/catering7.5
Entertainment/wifi8.0
Services8.0

Seattle - SEA

9.0/10
Efficiency8.5
Access9.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness9.5

Seoul - ICN

9.1/10
Efficiency9.5
Access9.0
Services9.0
Cleanliness9.0

Conclusion

It was a pleasure to fly Asiana and experience a new airline. The crew was phenomenal in every aspect and provided one of the best and memorable flights that I ever had.

The seats were not the new ones and did not provide much privacy, but the service more than made up for this disadvantage.

Small touches like kneeling in front of customers to show respect, anticipating needs, answering the call button within 5 seconds (I did this like 3 times and counted the time they answered), providing pens along with the forms, and always maintaining a smiling and professional demeanor separate a mediocre carrier from an excellent one. I will look forward to flying OZ again in the future.

Related

22 Comments

  • Comment 94196 by
    Denzee 1773 Comments

    Thank you so much for sharing with flight with OZ as there is not so many FR with this company.

    As usual FAs are outstanding but seats are pretty old and I'm wondering how is the novel business seat.

    For the meal, it seems that bimbimbap is the common dish served on korean airlines and it's a shame that there is other choice for the Korean meal.

    • Comment 284825 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2296 Comments

      The new seats seem to be available on their 777's and my understanding is that they are very private except for the ones that are a pair in the middle, similar to TG A380 J seats.

      Bibimbap is quite popular and my guess is that it is a low cost meal too. It is basically ground beef mixed with vegetables. Remember that comfort food does not have to be expensive, so this dish provides a touch of authenticity and is easy on the budget at the same time.

      I saw a different Koren dish from ICN-HKG called Sssambap which was steamed rice topped with grilled bulgogi beef and bean paste wrapped with leafy vegetables. I had the salmon in mushroom cream sauce so I can't tell how it was.

    • Comment 284831 by
      pititom GOLD 10236 Comments

      Denis, do you expect Kalbi inside a plane cabin ^^ ?

  • Comment 94198 by
    AirCanada881 1631 Comments

    terrific report my good man, thanks for sharing. I like your seat number, so I guess everything was in 3D as expected, the food, the FA's :-D

    Asiana looks like a good carrier, it must be great to have such professional crews, the food looks good, I've never tried this signature dish before though, how long was the flight? 9 hours?

    • Comment 284826 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2296 Comments

      You should give bibimbap a try next time. I always try to have something typical of the carrier that I fly with if it is my first flight with them. This dish is also offered in economy.

      Flight time from SEA-ICN is close to 11 hrs.

  • Comment 94202 by
    lagentsecret SILVER 10614 Comments

    Thanks for sharing this FR

    Nice pictures

    Not a great service at the BA lounge : you had to go to the gate to reissue a BP !!

    The lounge itself is average at best

    Like Denzee I don't understand why korean airlines are not serving other Korean dish except bibimbap

    There are tiny portions of food especially regarding the starters

    Beautiful tableware

    And a top notch crew is all you need to have a great flight

    • Comment 284829 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2296 Comments

      It was weird to have the OZ rep at the BA lounge send me downstairs to get a lounge invitation and new boarding pass. Perhaps they are not set up with their own computer system in that lounge.

      I suspect that the serving of bibimbap could be a matter of economics. It is not that expensive if it is even offered in the back of the plane.

      I too found the portions for the appetizer a bit tiny, but they include a soup also which not a lot of carriers do in J. The beautiful tableware is only used for Korean dishes. If you have the Western options it is served on white chinaware.

      A top crew makes all the difference. I also noticed that some of the OZ crew are stunningly gorgeous. I'm sure beauty is one of the criterias for their selection besides other qualifications. As a side note, I found their English to be very competitive and good.

  • Comment 94225 by
    pititom GOLD 10236 Comments

    Oh you made me hungry...I love Korean food ^^

    The UA lounge is a very nice surprise ; renovation really upgraded the place...too bad there's no change on the pantry ;)

    Very nice service...no tray, great setup, nice food. And the FA seem perfect. So the only downside is this old J seat. I expected OZ to put their new business class on this line.

    Thanks a lot for this FR !

    • Comment 284858 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2296 Comments

      I love Korean fried chicken with that finger licking sauce. The banchan alone will keep me satisfied. All I would need is steamed rice ;)

      Yep, the UA Club looks much better than before. Too bad they don't really put much effort into upgrading the pantry. Then again, domestic clubs handle more traffic so probably they keep the food offerings at a minimum. Can you imagine how much food would be consumed if they decided to give more substantial fares?

      I don't think SEA is a premium market for OZ, unlike LAX or JFK. It would have been nice to try the new seats but I guess it would be some time before they appear in this route.

  • Comment 94233 by
    02022001 SILVER 4393 Comments

    A really good flight on asiana. Thanks for this FR

  • Comment 94257 by
    indianocean SILVER 6559 Comments

    The service onboard looks wonderful. Too bad you travelled on an old seat.
    Every US airline lounge looks alike, everywhere they are situated, they suck.
    BA Terraces offers a very nice view on the tarmac but the bar looks ridiculous.
    Thank you jetsetpanda

  • Comment 94319 by
    jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2296 Comments

    You know, the first time that I set foot on a BA lounge, I was disappointed. I looked at the food offering and thought to myself is that all?. For an established European carrier, I was expecting much more. It was marginally better than a U.S. domestic lounge, but not by much. The amount of wine and alcohol looked decent enough, but I don't really drink due to health reasons. Their lounges at LHR T5 might be a different story, but those located at overseas stations are just O.K.

  • Comment 94396 by
    flyingjapans 1369 Comments

    Thanks for this wonderful FR with outstanding pictures.

    Both lounges are indeed a very good surprise, even if food selection can be improved, these huge windows are an advantage in terms of location.

    Meal service looks tasty and is well presented.

    Do all A330-300s still have this kind of lie flat seat?

  • Comment 94483 by
    Papoumada SILVER 5626 Comments

    Congratulations for this highly comprenhensive report I should have read before the final ICN-HKG.

    Once more, OZ offers a 5-star service with FA anticipating your needs. A great job.

    Any idea of the wine list?

    Did you have the opportunity to test the IFE?

    Thanks for sharing.

    • Comment 284965 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2296 Comments

      Wine menu uploaded. Sorry for the oversight.

      As far as IFE, I don't usually watch videos or listen to music onboard. I am old fashioned and bring my books and magazines. I remember a couple of current movies but not much else. Sorry. I can tell you that the headphones are not noise cancelling.

  • Comment 94503 by
    KévinDC TEAM GOLD 4934 Comments

    Just getting back from Asia myself and playing catch up trying to read FRs. Beautiful report as always. Asiana clearly deserves its great reputation. Between KE and OZ, South Korean does not have a shortage of quality airlines for such a small country. BTW, Asiana tweeted your report after I tweeted it on our Flight-Report page... You're kinda famous now :-)

  • Comment 94516 by
    jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2296 Comments

    So are you going to be my agent now? :P Thanks for the exposure. Hope it is useful to someone. I'd say that for a country of its size, Korea certainly has two good quality carriers. Another country with two great carriers is Japan with JL and NH.

    • Comment 285001 by
      KévinDC TEAM GOLD 4934 Comments

      And then there's the US...one of the biggest countries with 0 quality carriers...lol, J/K...there's VX :-)
      Sure, I'll be your agent :-) Talent management for Food photographer and flight-reporter extraordinaire :-)

  • Comment 119424 by
    SKYTEAMCHC TEAM GOLD 7768 Comments

    I know this FR has been published a long time ago but for some resaon I missed it.
    The food looks great and I like the way it is displayed , it's almost lunch time when i read this report and i am now craving for a good bibimpab !
    The crew looks great on the pictures and you comments confirm this feeling.

    Thanks for sharing this flight and sorry to post my comments so late !

    • Comment 302764 by
      jetsetpanda AUTHOR 2296 Comments

      No worries. Better late than never ;)

      I also tend to miss good reports. Sometimes it's hard to keep up with so many talented reporters.

      Whatever you end up eating, chances are that it will be good if you are in Paris.

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