Upon arriving in Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Airport, excitement began to build. I found out the hard way that despite what I’d read multiple times on the biggest travel website on the internet that there is no Uber in Bangkok, so I wasted an hour tapping away hoping for a ride to come, but eventually had to follow tips from another site which said to download Grab. The airport is clean, modern and efficient. As someone who’s traveled at least a handful of times in their life, I was eager to see if Cathay Pacific business class deserves all the praise bloggers annoyingly give it, or if it’s really just a shambles. Within minutes, the answer began to unfold…

Check In

I approached the business and first class check in desk. The rugs were 21cm wide, and 48cm long, and clearly had been walked on before. This instantly made me question whether reports I’d read on Flyertalk about the decline of Cathay Pacific were in fact true. If dirt could get on a rug on a floor of a major airport, what else could Cathay Pacific be doing wrong? Following that lead,  I immediately waved my OneWorld Emerald card, yet no one from the airline desk seemed willing to push the passengers they were assisting aside, to handle my boarding pass requirements. The check in agent neglected to ask me about my tenuous journey to the airport. No personal touch – just a boarding pass. After the hassle of security, I made my way to the lounge, if you can call it that.

Lounge

Now, I know this is only a business class lounge, but hello – where’s the waiter service? Already less than amused, I found a seat amongst the circus of people and settled for sparkling wine. Can you believe that a five star airline like Cathay Pacific refuses to pay the extortionate fees required to serve Champagne here in Bangkok? I can tell the difference, trust me. I took an afternoon wine course once after an afternoon at some vineyards. I picked up my TGI Friday’s style buzzer from the guy at the counter making the food. He smiled, but it just didn’t seem genuine, you know? My pad thai was just ok. This is Bangkok, and for my free meal in an airport with 250 passengers at a time, I expect Jay Fai quality noodles. This simply ranked on the scale of most thai meals. Also, the showers were just meh. I could’ve just used one of the 8 Priority Pass cards I hold, from the eight $450 a year credit cards I have to get into a different lounge. Maybe next time?

In case it hasn’t dawned on you yet, this is satire, unlike similar articles found elsewhere. If you were genuinely hoping to learn about the Cathay Pacific A350-1000, here’s a full photo tour – including info on where to sit…

Gate

I made my way to gate G5, which was approximately a 321 pace walk, at a heading of 36° NE. I promptly told the gate staff that I am a well known blogger, and that I should be first to board. I was allowed to sit in the handicapped section near the door, so that I could nab the first to board title. FTW. What’s priority boarding for anyway? I mean, right? Don’t you guys agree? As people eyed up spots near me in the handicapped section, I was able to use my Amex Platinum card to reflect the light from the windows into their eyes to push them back. I then used my actual sea of Priority Pass cards to eye burn the rest. If my flight had been delayed, which it wasn’t, I could’ve bought my own toilet paper, rather than using the stuff at the airport, thanks to the delay protection that kicks in after a mere 12 hours.

On Board

I boarded through Door L1. This was a hassle because my seat was in the last row of business, so this meant I had to walk almost all the way to Door L2 while inside the business cabin. You’d think someone would be on top of this at a five star airline. Once onboard, and after the 28ft walk of shame to my seat, I was greeted with non vintage champagne and mixed nuts. The nuts were lukewarm an nothing more. Doesn’t the crew manifest let them know that I like my nuts warm? I complained to the purser, who said she’d be happy to forward my complaint to the CEO. I know airline CEO’s have other issues like stock price, international cargo contracts and multi billion dollar aircraft orders to place, but you’d think they would want to know about lukewarm mixed nuts and champagne that was just “ok” being served in their second most prestigious cabin, on a 2 hour flight…

Bed?

Having flown first class once on a Delta domestic flight from Philadelphia to Washington DC, I had a lot of relevant experience with which to compare this business class “bed”. Upon boarding, it sure didn’t look much like a bed. I read that business class means beds, and all I found was a big seat that looked like forest moss was growing on it. Chic? No. Bed? No. After dinging the call button for the second time prior to take off, I was told that with the press of a button, the seats turn into beds. Couldn’t they just start with each seat in full bed mode, like in the press images they send to our office?  It caused a lot of confusion and got me stressed before takeoff, but after a tweet to the airline, I was assured they would take this into consideration.

Entertainment

My television offered 200 movies and 40 TV shows. With flights up to 14 hours long, I just don’t think that’s enough content. I mean, I had to settle on Save The Last Dance 2, and while it’s a triumph of cinema, I think they could invest in more content. The TV was 21 inches wide, which is half the size of my TV at home, which really deteriorated from the viewing experience.  I’m pretty sure it wasn’t UHD, just HD. How is that acceptable in 2018? I tweeted this to their team as well, and they said they’d take my feedback of doubling the size of every business class TV on board, and be sure to keep Save The Last Dance 2 on the permanent roster. At the time of writing, no response has been received, but we’ll update as progress reports come in.

Soft Product

I eventually figured out how to work the five buttons which control the seat. I’ve heard on Qatar Airways unbelievably outstanding, superior business class that  you can just whisper into the air nozzle and it will know what position you’d like to recline into. The seat took approximately 21 seconds and 38 nanoseconds to fully recline into a “bed”. When it comes to airline sleep, every second counts. Honestly, my college dorm room had a wider bed. The Airbus A350-1000 is called “1000” because according to Flyertalk, it’s 1000 inches wider than the A350-900 – so I was really disappointed to see a bed that was more like a surfboard. The pillow was just ok and nothing more. I use Casper mattresses at home and my standards for what I spend my 15,000 miles on are justifiably lofty. I stole the pillow from the guy next to me who was passed out drunk from the non vintage champagne and lukewarm nuts. He was apparently a fan. Awkward…

Customer Service

After a short rest we were on final approach. The purser came through to thank me for flying Cathay Pacific, but much like the guy making pad thai, I just didn’t buy it. I just didn’t feel like I was the most important customer she had ever served, and for this reason I am going to leave a bad TripAdvisor rating. She said the exact same spiel to the person behind me, which  made it feel as if she was just doing her job, and not indeed a massive fan of my travel blog. Fortunately I was able to get some of the $20 in taxes I paid for the flight, in addition to the 15,000 points by using my Amex Centurion card. At $2500 a year in annual fees, it’s a bit steep, but when it can save you $20 on airline fees – it really adds up. Maybe not to $2500, but it feels really cool.

Overall

This was not the best business class flight I’ve ever taken, even though it’s the only one I’ve ever taken. Was it worth 15,000 points? Maybe. Was Singapore Suites much better? Totally. If you get three premium credit cards a month for the next 12 months, you too can fly Singapore Suites and avoid the supreme mediocrity of flat beds in the sky, if you can call them that. I’ll certainly look for business class experiences, all one of them known as EVA Air, which offer vintage champagne next time, since this will help to justify the $20 surcharges. We’ve contacted Cathay to see how progress on doubling the size of TV’s, and making the beds look pretty before the flight is going to avoid further confusion. We’ll update this article once we hear back.