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REVIEW – Thai Airways : First Class – Bangkok to Tokyo (A380)

Thai Airways (TG)

  • Flight: TG600
  • Class: First
  • Seat: 2K
  • From: Bangkok (BKK)
  • To: Tokyo (NRT)
  • Aircraft: Airbus A380-800
  • FF Status during flight: None
  • Fare Type: US Airways Dividend Miles Redemption
  • Date: February 2014


TG A380

A picture of my plane, taken at NRT – where the terminal windows are more picture friendly

Upon boarding the plane, my first reaction was pretty much this:


Some cabin shots:


The seat was outrageously comfortable. And there was so much storage space that I can’t imagine anybody actually using it all.

Moments after taking my seat, a very outgoing and polite male FA came over to offer me some Dom. It’s always 5 o’clock somewhere…

TG A380 first thai royal

those flaps on the right hand side, are lids to some enormous storage compartments

With my drink poured and another Rimowa amenity safely stored away, I was ready to enjoy the tailcam show! Honestly, I can’t believe they never thought of doing this before. The concept is awesome. Getting a third person view of the plane, as it taxis and takes off, is just great.

The FA returned to top my glass up quickly and within 10 minutes we were getting ready to take off.

TG A380 first thai royal

Shortly after take off, a female FA came around the cabin with food and drinks menus. She acknowledged that I had ordered lobster (again) but said I was free to choose anything else, in addition to or instead of the lobster.

Upon opening the drinks menu, I got a mild shock. There was nothing inside. “Are you trying to tell me something?” I asked the FA. “I thought 2 glasses of champagne with breakfast was pretty standard”. She immediately went bright red and said, “I’m so embarrassed”. She ran off to get the drinks pages for me and immediately offered to get me a drink. Well, who am I to turn down such a lovely offer…

The meal service began with another towel (this was number 5 for the day – and it was still only 9am).

TG A380 first review

The fruit selection was great, as always tends to be the case on TG.

Yoghurt in a pot, not as fancy as some airlines that empty the yoghurt into a bowl. Pretty much as minor a complaint as it is possible to have, in this life.

thai royal first class breakfast lobster

The lobster this time was a little chewier than ex-LHR. Still, it’s lobster and Dom, for breakfast… in a freaking sky fortress!

 

You’ll be glad to hear that the espresso machine on the TG388 is fully operational.

After breakfast I decided to try and catch up on some sleep. The suite behind me was unoccupied, so I asked an FA to make the bed up for me.

my seat: 2K

my bed/ pillow kingdom: 3K

I decided to download one album before my trip and make that the soundtrack. I listened to it for the first time on this flight and now every time I listen to it, the memories of the whole trip (and this flight in particular) come flooding back.

Good thing I absolutely loved it. I guess the bottle of Dom I’d already drunk at this stage helped to make me more suggestible. The album is The Bones of What You Believe by CHVRCHES.

Here is the first track. Lying in my luxurious bed, boozed up in the early morning, I managed a couple of tracks before drifting off.

This is a huge achievement for me. I’ve never in my life slept for more than 40 minutes on a plane. A lot of this is to do with the fact that the air is nowhere near as dry on the A380 as on other planes. I really think this is a big factor in jet lag too. Sometimes I’ll get a kind of hazy jet lag feeling, even on a shorthaul, and I’m convinced that the dry air is the cause.

I woke up after a good 3 hours of sleep.

I saw that most of the cabin was awake, so decided to open the windows for a lovely morning view.

After making my way through another 5 or so glasses of Dom, I decided to photograph the lavs and lounge, in great depth. Including a panoramic super-shot of the mega-lav.

You lucky people.



The Mega-lav sitting area

Mega-lav vanity area

An awe inspiring, panoramic toilet vista

Stairway to steerage

After all that exploring, my glass of Dom was in sore need of a refill. As was my stomach.

I went for a duck noodle soup, with condiments. It was great. You often find that the simplest foods are the ones that hold up the best in the air. I also think that Asian flavours; strong sweet, sour and umami as well as spice, shine at high altitude.

I managed to polish off a third bottle of Dom just before landing. By this time I’d struck up quite a rapport with the FAs, who were very interested in all the flying I was doing on this trip.

They were also keen to tell me all about the 388, including the routes it flies, how the cabin compares to other in the fleet, etc.

dom perignon thai royal first

The male FA saw that I had been taking pictures throughout the flight and asked if I wanted to photograph the Dom, “so that you can remember it” ?

He then came around with a deck of TG A380 playing cards and an orchid (not because I’m special, everybody got these)…

…And ran over with the bottle, offering me one more glass of Dom before landing. Which I graciously accepted

 

Cheers!

A pretty frequent sight on this particular flight

 

Around 20 minutes later, we touched down at NRT. The landing was outrageously smooth. I know everybody mentions how smooth and quiet the takeoff and landing is on the whalejet. They really aren’t exaggerating. It is astonishing that a vehicle of this size can move in such a way.

All in all, this was one of my favourite ever flights. The FAs on TG can make or break a flight and once again this crew was a cut above. The hard product is very nice, the white trim does show some signs of wear and tear but really, that is to be expected. Ultimately though, the hard product is well above average and the crews are too. I highly recommend flying TG F if you haven’t done so already.

Anyway, back to the trip. The lounges of NRT were waiting for me…

 

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