Well, we are now well into our round the world trip.Back to Forum
Tagged: Capetoniam, I have wonderful memories of the 3-week suspends at the Imperial in Delhi at the expense of my ex-employer, Lugano Pirate, to be honest Charles P I am a dedicated reader of the site - I am a corporate travel agent. I actually really enjoy reading about all of your adventures (FDOS
My wife and I must unexpectedly return to the UK next week from Tokyo (see birth notice above). Any recommendations from the forum as to airlines or routes ? We will fly Business or First and would like to sleep for most of the journey. Thanks.
I’ve spent decades living in the Far East until recently, often flying back and forth to the UK or Europe, almost always in J in the last 2 decades, very occasionally in F, on various airlines though often on BA or CX. In my opinion CX are by far the best, though Asiana are quite good to LHR. I would rather fly via HKG just so I can use CX. (Needless to say I am not connected with CX in any way).13 Aug 2018
Congratulations Charles, I wish the little one every health and well being.
As to flights, may I suggest First Class on the LH 717, a B747-800. Get to see how F should really be and enjoy the amazing First lounge at FRA (don’t forget to get a duck from the bathroom) as well as being driven to the onward connection from the lounge. Dep. 1405 Arr. 2040 So a good lunch on board, sleep, home then back in time for bed.13 Aug 2018
OK I have gone for Cathy Pacific. My thinking here is the following:
I know the Lufthansa product quite well and although I agree their First product is good (very good) I have never flown with CX in First and the online reviews are very positive. Their food also seems to be rated very highly.
In addition Mrs-P who does not sleep well on aircraft looked at the Cathy website with me and said,
“O look those flowers and the big flat beds they have look very nice” This of course was the clincher.14 Aug 2018
Back for the evening after a lovely dinner.
Here in Tokyo we are staying at the Four Seasons Marunouchi on the advice of an old school friend of mine who works here in banking. We visited the Imperial Palace today which was a fascinating structure with extensive gardens. Visits are by prior application only but well worth it.
Tokyo is all one expects it to be exciting, confusing and fascinating all at once. I delight in the fact that taxi drivers all wear white gloves, that on street corners they have machines that dispense beer, that after they tow away illegally parked cars they chalk the details of how to recover it in the road.
We have also been to Odaiba which is the sort of thing I expect to see in Dubai. In short it’s an artificial island in Tokyo Bay which includes a man-made beach at Seaside Park, a Ferris wheel and a science museum. There are also two shopping malls called Aqua City and the Venice inspired Venus Fort.
Am currently enjoying a rather good Balvenie Double Wood twelve year old Single Malt Scotch with a cigar while Mrs P works her way through pictures of young Tristan (new Grandson) on her IPad.16 Aug 2018
Back in the UK for a short while while we visit the new Grandson. A short of review of Cathy Pacific First Class, in a word excellent and our thanks to ‘GivingupBA’ for the recommendation. I found the seat (very wide) in all positions very comfortable, the crew service professional and friendly, while the food we thoroughly enjoyed. Even Mrs-P who does not tend to sleep well on aircraft was able to get a good rest. The 90 minute layover in Hong Kong is reasonable but at nearly twenty hours in the air it’s still a very long flight. I watched three films and played backgammon with another passenger for around three hours (lost $200 after a run of sixes). The food – a small salmon caviar as a pre flight snack was very nice and for the main meal I had a pea soup followed by a seafood stew which was very enjoyable. A rather overly sweet mint chocolate cake was served with the coffee.
We will be in the UK for around a week and will return to Japan with Lufthansa First Class on the advice of ‘LuganoPirate (thank you). We sold our London apartment some time ago so we are staying at the Intercontinental on Park Lane, a hotel I have used on many occasions and which in my view is one of the best in London for service and location. London is certainly cooler after the recent heatwave and everybody seems happier to have the odd rain shower. I cannot remember a time I have seen the South East of England so dry, more like the South of France !
The new Grandson is of course a delight and has been cooed over by all the women of the family in the usual manner while my so-in-law is walking around with the,
“Good God what am I going to do ?” look of all first time fathers 🙂 Am trying to persuade Mrs -P that I really should do a quick flying visit to the Belgian GP this weekend under the excuse of checking up on our house there, let’s see if she goes for it !22 Aug 2018
Congratulations again on the Grandson, and the best advice I can give any father is when the baby cries at night, leave it to cry (unless it’s in distress of course). The moment you coodle it (as most mothers do) it knows how to get attention and does it again and again. This was the policy with all 4 of my kids and as a result they would sleep right through the night!
I’m glad you found CX so comfortable and I’m very curious to see how LH compares. Do leave time for the lounge, it is fantastic as is the car ride from the lounge.
Finally, go to the Belgian GP. That’s a Pirate command 😉 Tell Mrs.P you forgot there a small present for her and you have to go back and fetch it. Of course this will add some extra expense but I doubt she will object! 😉22 Aug 2018
Fully agree re parent advice. We did just the same. Regretfully Mrs-P knows all my “need to go to the F1” excuses. Shame as Spa is one of my favourite circuits of the year.
I will give you a Lufthansa First report after we return to Asia22 Aug 2018
Once again a slight change in our schedule and rather than returning to Japan we are going to go straight on to Australia to ensure we meet a few commitments down the line. We are going to be flying from Brussels and once again I am asking for suggestions as to carriers based on what the Forum has found good.
I know that my friend ‘LuganoPirate’ will be banging the drum for the Lufthansa First Class product (very tempting) however Mrs-P is quite attracted to the Emirates First which mixes the B777 First Class with the A380 First for the second part of the journey. Etihad is also an option as is Singapore Airlines and BA. Any suggestions ?
Our criteria is:
Ability to sleep in comfort and sit comfortably when reading
Able to eat together as much as possible
Quality of food and wine
Short layover time28 Aug 2018
I haven’t flown SQ in F for quite some years, but it was one of my most memorable F experiences. EK is a bit “bling” in my view. EY F is very good, but I haven’t flown in the most recent incarnation of it. Can’t comment on LH.28 Aug 2018
EK First is very good Charles, especially on the 380 where you have a very large bathroom and a shower with plenty of amenities. The 777 has very small bathrooms, like economy on most aircraft, except you get proper face cloths, soap, toothbrushes and paste (which come in very handy) etc. If the 380 I’d give it a big thumbs up, but not on the 777.
My biggest bugbear is the midnight shuffle in Dubai, where there is no assistance (if you’re able bodied) and miles to walk. The F lounges are very good and the food is excellent both in the lounge and on board. However, my last trip I did a 3 day Dubai stopover, and this broke the journey nicely and I was able to choose better connections going through a very uncrowded Dubai airport on the last leg back to Milan. It does not cost any extra and, you get the car to the hotel each way and can better start to adjust to any time differences.
The other factor is cost. Ek is cheaper but slightly lacks the Teutonic efficiency and polish of the LH crew. I also find the seat slightly less comfortable and you can’t adjust it at all while on the ground or until you reach about 25,000 feet. They do have suites though, so if in the centre seats with the divider down and the doors closed, it can be quite cosy.
LH don’t fly down under so you have to change somewhere, but the LH/SQ option would be more appealing to me than the EK one.28 Aug 2018
SQ suits would likely to be a lifetime experience, so I will suggest that. I didn’t travel on suits yet, but travelled in old F in SQ – that itself was a fantastic experience from service, ambiance and food angle plus checkin and lounge experience at Changi.
I understand suits is even more superior to old F especially for sleeping.
Plus a real double bed at 36000’ for Mr and Mrs is something. SQ suits is in my bucket list28 Aug 2018
Another oft neglected route, is Europe to JNB, then JNB – Sydney or Perth. Break the journey in SA for a day or two (or more) then continue. Best combo here is LH / Qantas with each leg taking 10 hours. Just something different to consider.28 Aug 2018