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  1. #1
    Member สมาชิก Essex boys's Avatar
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    Default Thai international airways LHR to BKK

    Hi all, just wanted to share my experiences and maybe give an insight into business class travel.
    i had a load of air miles, and got my gold status with Thai airways recently, so I called the London office to use my free upgrade for achieving 50,000 air miles....on the phone the women at the Thai offices in London said they had a mileage sale on so I could use 65,000 air miles and buy an upgrade to business class instead of using my free upgrade, so I used my air miles, which means I still have the upgrade from Thai to use for achieving my 'gold status' on my royal orchid plus account.
    so, obviously excited about travelling business class,as I had booked on the A380 I looked forward to my holiday, and then Thai airways dubious customer services changed all that.., a week before my flight I logged into my booking to recheck my seats etc, and was stumped to find out that my A380 had now been changed to the 777-300ER, so my seats were changed as well, still business class, but changed from where I had chosen to sit...phoned Thai airways up, to be told that the A380's had been pulled from service for maintenance, so I asked them why I hadn't been informed? She said, 'well we are sending out an email to all booked passengers', I received that email four days after my holiday had started! Anyway, to the flight itself, I had heard the united airlines lounge in lhr was good, and it was, a great looking spacious lounge, plenty of seating and tables, and the food was cooked well and plenty of it ( I can only speak for the breakfast as that is when I was in the lounge) free coffee tea, food, snacks and juices and sodas etc, well worth using this lounge, this was all done using my star alliance Gold card, normally in heathrow I go to a food place and can spend up to £15 on a crappy old breakfast and a coffee.
    time to board the plane, it was great boarding first, plenty of time to get into your seat and sort your stuff out without being barged out the way by people wanting to get past, it was heaven to have some space, and no one reclining the seat in front of me so that the tv screens nearly sitting on your nose, and not having to be a contortionist to get out of your seat, because said passenger has his/ her seat reclined so far back. On the trip out, I found that the seat I had 19K was a window seat so that was good, but the carpet in that area was worn almost completely through, and lots of staining on the plastic trim in that seat area, food, whilst being a lot better than economy class, wasn't great, overcooked and lukewarm, and first course was just cold! Service wasn't great on the flight, and it felt like you were pestering the flight attendants when you wanted or asked for something, but that aside, being able to lay flat and sleep was a god send.on arrival in bkk, the gold status card didn't really help with much, still bad queues for immigration once again the lines were full of people who hadn't filled in their landing cards properly, or just hadn't filled them in at all, then the lines shuffle along while these idiots try to walk along filling them in!! Donkeys!!!.

    on my return home journey, the gold status was an immense help, I checked in at the gold and business class check in, literally only four people in front of me I was checked in in minutes, I was then told to use the 'fast track'check in and immigration, this seemed to be for first and business class and gold and platinum orchid plus members, security was a breeze, on about a dozen persons in front of me, through in minutes, then a short walk to immigration to hand in my departure card, there were three booths here, and again I was through here in minutes, no long queues shuffling along. From here I went downstairs to the Thai airways lounge, this was very busy and getting a seat was a struggle, but the food was great and again it's free....Thai have loads of lounges in bkk so I guess a bit more walking would have got me to a lounge that wasn't so busy.
    the flight home was good, priority boarding at bkk was great no waiting ages to board, seat location again was a window seat, 15K ,no threadbare carpet and it was clean. Food on the flight was much better and the flight attendants were more help and were about a lot more with drinks and snacks etc.
    to sum up, my business class trip was great, no seat in front pushed into your face, better quality food, a bed on a plane was heaven, and in bkk coming back the business class check in and security and immigration was so easy and hassle free. I still have one more business class upgrade to use with Thai, but looking around, other airlines seem to have a better product for the same money (keep in mind I didn't pay for this, just £240 is all I paid in taxes etc). Why don't Thai do a 'premium economy' seating like EVA does.
    anyway I hope this helps someone who might be considering business class flight.
    many thanks
    essexboys.

  2. #2
    Forum Regular สมาชิกประจำ
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    good report,i flew business lhr/hkg with Cathay last trip over, this was my first time in business, check in and service on board was excellent, as was the food, fully reclining seat on a B777, its the first time i have flown to Thailand and felt good after the journey, its the way to go. hoping to do again again on the way back to UK.

  3. #3
    Forum Dinosaur ไดโนเสาร์ Flip's Avatar
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    I agree its the way to go and if I was travelling once or twice per year, I might go business. I've been upgraded a couple of times on Etihad and compared to economy, its fantastic. I can sleep in economy but its not good quality sleep - sleeping in business, I wake up refreshed. I always check the price of business when I book and my usual verdict is, its good but its not 4 x better.

  4. #4
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    Same old Thai and mistruths. A380 was pulled because it flew half empty most of the time. Maintenance is scheduled a year in advance and the carrier knows exactly what aircraft is rostered.
    Good report agree with Flip above though at roughly 4 times the prices of economy is pointless unless money no object. I can afford it but still cant sleep so I'll keep the £1500 for amusement in Thailand instead.

  5. #5
    Member สมาชิก Essex boys's Avatar
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    Hi all, thanks for your replys and input, I checked today and Thai airways want £2400 for business class! I will use my last upgrade with them in June, and then I will be looking around to use another carrier, EVA have a premium economy class, that looks like a comfortable way to travel and not excessively priced.
    i did see some Thai airways A380's in Bangkok, they did look like they were receiving some type of refit. If I remember correctly, the email says that the A380's were back in service by end of April.

  6. #6

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    One of my bosses of old had a travel agency and he got to fly first class all the time. It was a nice surprise on a trip to LA, with Delta if I remember correctly, that he swapped seats with me in cattle class. Back then it wasn’t much more than a much bigger seat with lots of great food using metal cutlery and free drink and excellent service.

    When I found the huge difference in the cost of the seats I knew I would never be able to justify it in my head. Maybe as a special occasion with my wife or family but even if I was a multi millionaire it's not that much better. If it's a free upgrade or I had enough Airmiles to cover the extra, it would be a no brainer.

  7. #7
    Moderator Tobias's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Essex boys View Post
    ... on arrival in bkk, the gold status card didn't really help with much, still bad queues for immigration once again the lines were full of people who hadn't filled in their landing cards properly, or just hadn't filled them in at all, then the lines shuffle along while these idiots try to walk along filling them in!! Donkeys!!! ...
    It sounds like you had a poor crew on your outbound, they should have handed out the brown/gold coloured 'Priority Lane' immigration passes to those passengers in Business Class. In future, make sure to ask if they forget to hand them out.
    Tobias - โทเบียส
    If you want to know where I am, follow me on my Thailand-UK Blog.

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