I have already reviewed Cathay Pacific’s spectacular first class offering: Cathay Pacific International First Class Review. How does business class measure up? In this review I will tell you about my experience with Cathay Pacific’s Business Class product.
Cathay Pacific CX 705 Flight Basics
- Route: Hong Kong to Bangkok (CX 705)
- Flight duration (scheduled): 3 hrs 5 min
- Departure time: 08:00 am
- Arrival time: 10:05 am
- Equipment: A330-300
- Seat: 15k
From Flightaware, the travel path took us over the South China Sea, crossing Viet Nam, southern Laos, and into Thailand.
Boarding Cathay Pacific Business Class in Hong Kong
Our gate was immediately across from Cathay Pacific’s The Wing First and Business Class Lounge. I could see the gate area filling up with people from the 2nd floor lounge. As much as I enjoyed the lounge, it was time for my next experience – my flight to Bangkok.
Boarding was orderly and fast. Both the business class line and economy class line were moving efficiently without the race to get on the plane. Passengers seemed to have minimal cabin bags which probably sped up boarding.
I was greeted at the end of the forward jetway with warm smiles and directions to my seat. This business class held 39 seats with 7 rows in the forward cabin and 3 rows in a mini-cabin behind the galley. My seat was a window seat about halfway down on the starboard side of the main business class cabin.
Soon after sitting I was offered water or orange juice.
The Business Class Cabin and Seat Configuration
Cathay Pacific offers business class on all its planes. The configuration and seat varies significantly between A330s, A350s, and Boeing 777s. Cathay Pacific also varies equipment on a given route and departure time by day of the week. SeatGuru is a great tool to find out what seats and configuration will be on your flight before you book.
The business class seat configuration might be reverse herringbone 1-2-1 with every seat having aisle access, or the configuration may be a more traditional 2-2-2 or 2-3-2 layout.
The business class seat pitch ranges from 45 to 82. The seat width is either 20 or 21. Most importantly, the seat type may be lie-flat or angle flat, with the regional planes offering recliner seats for the business class offering.
I was fortunate enough to get a window seat in the 1-2-1 layout with lie-flat seats.
Cathay Pacific Business Class Suite
I found the seat/suite very comfortable although not very private.
The seat reclined to a flat bed with the feet going in the foot rest area shown above. The seat was comfortable albeit a little worn. The left arm rest could be raised or lowered to your comfort. The tray table was well positioned, and the side table was a generous size. The video screen came out and worked well.
The control area offered a handheld, seat and suite controls, a power outlet, and multiple jacks including a USB. Plus a well placed, easy to access air vent.
The plane did not offer WiFi nor were amenity kits distributed for this short flight, but the bathroom was well stocked with whatever you might need.
Cathay Pacific Business Class Breakfast Service
Breakfast was offered soon after takeoff.
I do not like egg dishes on an airplane (or really anywhere), though I chose the omelet because I wanted some bacon. To Cathay’s credit the omelet was quite tasty and I ate most of it (plus the meat) before kicking myself for forgetting to take a picture. The bread was fresh and the fruit was ripe and sweet.
The Dim Sum looked and smelled wonderful. I regretted not selecting it.
Two Anomalies On This Flight
This flight had two anomalies of note:
- Crying babies in Business Class
- No one was drinking alcohol
Screaming Babies in Business Class
A husband and wife with a toddler and two babies sat in business class. At least one of the two babies, and most often both of them, were crying/screaming almost the whole flight. The husband and wife were actively fighting because of the babies.
This situation made the crew noticeably tense and apologetic. It made some of the passengers tense too. It is honestly just hard to listen to that for 3 hours. One flight attendant, may God give her extra special blessings, spent almost the whole flight helping the parents to try to calm the babies, even holding and rocking one or the other during the flight. Thank goodness this was a 3 hour flight not a 15 hour flight.
My feelings about bringing babies and toddlers in upper classes are conflicted. Yes this was annoying and yes it took away from my experience. However in no way do I blame the airline nor even the parents (well I blame them for fighting with each other rather than working together as a team). Wearing the headsets drowned much of the noise out, though my preference is to only wear the headset when watching a movie.
No One Was Drinking Alcohol
Upon boarding, we were offered water or juice. No champagne was offered. There was no mention of alcohol on the menus. There was no offer of alcohol by the flight attendants, not even a Mimosa or a Bloody Mary. There did not appear to be alcohol on the service cart. I looked around the cabin and no one was drinking alcohol, and I confirmed my observation when I went to the lavatory.
Maybe it’s a cultural thing. Maybe the wine steward was the one holding the crying babies so she never got around to champagne and other alcohol. Maybe the flight was carrying an AA group.
I assume that if I asked they would have gotten me a drink. But I did not want to be “that guy” and at this hour, after having mimosas in the lounge preflight, I did not need any more booze.
I was very pleased with the “soft product” Cathay Pacific Business Class offers. The food was tasty and fresh. The crew was attentive, hardworking, and I give them props for attempting to deal with the crying babies situation.
The suite was plenty comfortable and well designed except for it lacked privacy. I would be happy to fly this plane on a long haul flight and I think these suites are the same ones on the Boeing 777-300ER planes often used for long haul flights. Check the configuration before you purchase because not all business class cabins are created equally.
I hope to get a chance to fly Cathay Pacific Business Class (and First Class) again soon.
Anyone have thoughts about your experience on Cathay Pacific Business Class?
How about any thoughts on babies and toddlers in upper classes?