Cathay Pacific First Class Review – Los Angeles to Hong Kong – CX 883

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Last week, I finally got my first experience with Cathay Pacific First Class flying from Los Angeles to Hong Kong. I had previously written about my Business Class flights experience here:

Review Business Class New York JFK to Hong Kong

Review Cathay Pacific Business Class Hong Kong to San Francisco

The incoming aircraft was late and boarding started about 30 minutes late. First Class and Business Class passengers were called at the same time, just after midnight for boarding.

My seat was 1D - the foremost middle seat (there are just 3 seats in First Class per row on this 777 and just two rows of First Class in total). The First Class cabin was completely full (as usual with Cathay Pacific Premium cabins).

I received a brief welcome from the very friendly cabin staff. Just after sitting down, Krug champagne was served.

The First Class cabin is very spacious; the Business Class mini-suite is a great product but the First Class cabin is twice as wide. The TV screen is much bigger and you feel very much at home in these suites. There are no privacy shields to roll up or down, though.

Shortly after take-off, the meal service would start, but this being First Class, I requested to have my bed prepared immediately and to eat later after waking up. It was well after midnight by now.

The pajamas and amenity kit were of great use. First Class has two bathrooms - one slightly larger and one smaller variant. When I got up to change after reaching 10,000 feet, BOTH pilots were in the bathrooms. I did not dare ask who was in the cockpit :)

Once made flat, the bed was easily the widest I have been on. There is no sleep position you can't do on this bed. However, you can feel the seat through the mattress pad. It's not like a bed. Singapore Airlines does a better job, since the seat is actually a mattress that just tries to be a seat.

I had no trouble falling asleep and just woke up for the occasional turbulence over the Pacific. 11 hours later, I finally woke up well-rested.

With 3 hours to spare, I made my way through both breakfast and dinner in a slow fashion.

I'm not a big fan of the food served on-board Cathay Pacific. It is certainly edible, but the 50 cent yoghurt and the cheap pastries always seem at odds with a Premium experience.

The breakfast dim sum was good, though.

I did not like the gnocchi dish (that was supposed to be dinner) and thought no restaurant in San Francisco would get away with such food.

I liked the espressos the crew were able to make. I'm not sure how, but it was much comparable to an espresso down on solid ground.

The CX entertainment studio has a number of TV shows, movies and music - though I had watched most of them already and settled on some Big Bang Theory re-runs.

I really liked the understated professional service. I wasn't asked 10x about my expectations (Lufthansa First Class) and wasn't bugged by flight attendants incessantly checking on me (Asiana First Class); I was just served by a friendly and highly-professional team who spoke fluent English.

Landing in Hong Kong was 30 minutes late.

There is no First Class ground support. Once your First Class flight ends, you are thrown into the airport like everybody else. Immigration lines were light but a priority line wouldn't be a bad idea at heavy times.

I paid 67,500 American AAdvantage for the journey from San Francisco to Colombo, Sri Lanka. I think it is awesome value for signing up for just one credit card (and then some).

Book your flight on Cathay Pacific here.

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