Flight Test: All the comforts in business class

MEGAN NICOL REED
Last updated 05:00 20/07/2014

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The crew were exceptionally friendly and responded efficiently and diligently to my every request on Cathay Pacific's Business Class cabin. 

THE ROUTE Haneda, Tokyo to Hong Kong

THE PLANE B747-400 - although we were due to fly on one of the newer generation B777s, which are replacing them.

THE LOYALTY SCHEME Cathay Pacific is part of Asia Miles, Asia's leading travel-reward programme. Flying with any of its more than 20 partner airlines earns you Asia Miles towards flight awards, upgrades, companion tickets and other lifestyle awards. It's free to join.

UP THE BACK OR POINTY END? Business, 91K

TIME IN THE AIR Four hours, 25 minutes

THE SEAT STUFF There are 46 business class seats in the B747s, including 24 in the upper deck. The seat reclines 180 degrees into a fully flat bed, 46 centimetres wide and 180cm long.

BAGGAGE You may check in up to 30 kilograms, with no restriction on the number of pieces. You may carry on one bag up to 10kg in weight, not exceeding 56 x 36 x 23cm in size.

COMFORT FACTOR I stand just shy of 164cms and, partially reclined, I was able to easily rest my feet on the footrest. Flat on my back, my feet didn't touch the end and I could roll over comfortably.

THAT'S ENTERTAINMENT The headphones were noise-cancelling and, most importantly if you plan to squeeze two movies in, as I did, comfortable. At 39cm, the personal screens are big enough that you don't feel you're being completely short-changed on the cinematic experience.

There are 100 films to choose from in a library which is updated monthly. . I cried my way through both Philomena and Labour Day. There were plenty of French language and Asian films to choose from, too. Considering the quality viewing available on television these days, of the 500 options there was nothing that appealed.

THE SERVICE The crew were exceptionally friendly and responded efficiently and diligently to my every request. My only complaint - and it seems mean - was that I would have preferred fewer interruptions inquiring as to my happiness. I just wanted to watch my movie, thanks.

FEEDING TIME I'm a vegetarian and while other airlines have taken the cost-cutting measure of lumping everyone who doesn't eat meat into the category of vegan, I was pleasantly surprised by the vast array of vegetarian options available. At the booking stage I could choose lacto-ovo, vegan, raw, Indian, Hindu or oriental. To mix it up I chose oriental and Indian on this flight.

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Because we were upgraded to business at check-in, I was still served my pre-ordered economy meal for dinner but with all the extra luxuries of business. So, along with an excellent chickpea curry and naan, there was a selection of cold Japanese-influenced appetisers, hot garlic bread, cheese and fruit, Haagen Dazs icecream and pralines. There is a rather nice 2012 white Burgundy, which I can highly recommend as an accompaniment.

THE VERDICT I was comfortable, well fed and entertained. You can't ask for more than that.

THE FREQUENCY Cathay Pacific has 49 flights a week between Hong Kong and Tokyo, flying in and out of both Narita and Haneda.

Tested by Megan Nicol Reed, who flew courteswy of Cathay Pacific.

- Sunday Star Times

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