I was flying from LHR to BKK in First Class with Thai about 6 months ago, on the ancient old B747 dinosaur. Two days before my flight I received a telephone call from Thai asking if I would mind switching my flight to the day after as a member of the Thai royal family was flying and wanted the entire First Class cabin to herself……………it was the current wife of the Crown Prince, and her 4-year old son……………..
I answered that I had to be in Bangkok the next day for a business meeting but would gladly allow them to switch me to Singapore Airlines, or Lufthansa, First Class (far better seating than Thai F class).
They came back to me about four hours later and said that the Princess was happy to share the F cabin but would I mind moving my seat from 1A to 3A to accommodate her and her security detail. I agreed to this. We ordinary mortals boarded first and then HM came on board, with a huge box of Krispy Kreme doughnuts, which she proceeded to hand out, personally, to the other F passengers, and she apologised to us (cabin was full) for the inconvenience caused by having her on board.
One of the two toilets was reserved for her and at one stage I exited the toilet and nearly cracked HM on the head with the door as she was entering the adjacent loo…………we both said “oh sorry” at exactly the same time and then had a laugh about that.
She came across as a very pleasant girl and not at all haughty, as I had expected. Her son was running around the cabin as kids do, and I raised my hand to high five him as he ran past me, being pursued by three minders on their knees……not an easy job….
When I recounted all this to my Thai wife she was horrified that I would touch a member of the royal family and that I should have a laugh with the CP about nearly nutting her with the loo door…………
When we landed at BKK the aircraft taxied to the VIP section of the airport and they opened the right hand door, rolled up the steps with the red carpet and there was a full-on royal reception for her….brass band, loads of top brass…….and everybody on the plane trying to get photos and video of it.
It was actually an interesting experience, and she was very nice and friendly……………but it was funny to watch everybody crawling around the cabin…..hope they had hoovered the carpet…………….!!
About six months later I was travelling in F class to LHR with my wife and 2-year old son on the B747 and the Chief Purser said he was the only the second child that particular crew had carried in F class on the 747 that year….and the other one was the son of the Crown Prince. She was amused when I told her that I had traveled on that same flight.
There were only two other people in F on that flight and my son, who wasn’t old enough to have his own seat, ended up sleeping like a babe in a seat to himself, all the way to London, while I stuffed my face with two tins (yes…two) of Sevruga caviar……………great flight………….
Happy New Year to everybody…………….