Review: Cathay Pacific Business Class, Hong Kong – Bangkok

Must-read Earlier Installments:

For more than two years I’ve been looking forward to flying Cathay Pacific’s new regional business class product but I’ve been foiled every time — I keep getting their long haul business product on my short intra-Asia flights.

That streak, lucky in most ways, continued. And I was sort of banging my head against the wall over it. What better way than a short hop between Hong Kong and Bangkok would there be to try out lesser seats?

Our plane sat waiting:

We were delayed 30 minutes for unspecified reasons. The gate agents couldn’t be apologetic enough but they also couldn’t explain the delay either.

Once onboard though I was once again graced with Cathay’s long haul business class product, which really is excellent — reverse herringbone fully flat seats with all aisle access.

I got comfy at my seat, and admit I may have let my eyes close for a minute or two during boarding although I was awake for a predeparture glass of water — after long haul flying I do my best to stay hydrated.

We had a fairly long taxi out and takeoff. And once we were in the air, flight attendants were in the aisles immediately to offer service.

This was the breakfast offering:

Place settings were distributed first, and then another flight attendant came behind shortly with entree selections.

I went with the dim sum:

After the meal I sat back with another episode form season 2 of The Newsroom, and soon enough we were descending in Bangkok. Fast track immigration cards had been distributed in business class, although I wasn’t going to need one.

I had hurt my foot when I tripped running for a flight as doors closed days before the trip, and knowing that the walk from some of the farther gates at Suvarnabhumi airport to immigration can be fairly interminable I queried a company I’ve used in the past for car service and expedited immigration about their golf cart meet and greet service. It turns out that they aren’t a bargain anymore, or hotel pricing has come down since weren’t charging lower prices than anyone else. So I figured I’d have the Grand Hyatt Bangkok arrange it for me (2400 baht), since that would mean a bit of a more seamless experience.

When the plane pulled up to the gate, I was one of the first off the plane. We were about 25 minutes late, and there was no one there to meet me. So I made the long way to immigration, used my fast track card, waited for bags, and then found the hotel’s representative in the arrivals hall.

Next up: the Grand Hyatt Bangkok

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

More articles by Gary Leff »


  1. Did the seats had footrests? Last time I was on a redone Cathay business class, it didn’t have footrests, just an extension that came up under your thighs. I found it somewhat uncomfortable after a while.

  2. Gary, is there any service to help make a connection in Hong Kong airport for a senior citizen who otherwise will feel stressed and lost? Probably connecting from dragon air to Cathay pacific, probably traveling in business or first class on an award ticket, probably not a tight connection. Thanks

  3. @beachfan – the new seats has a footrest that provides a seamless extension to the legrest when you flatten the seat. I flew HKG-LAX last month and it was really comfortable.

    @Andrea – you can ask Cathay prior to your flight to provide a wheelchair as you arrive in HKG. They’ll take you through security, drop you at the nearest lounge to the departing gate, and pick you up near boarding time. I used it once after a knee surgery.

  4. Gary, I flew HKG-CGK last month, and the seats were regional business seats. Do you know if Cathay flies new business seats for that route at all? I figure HKG-BKK is shorter than HKG-CGK, but CGK route I was on had the old seats.

  5. I think once you find yourself on the new regional business class you’ll quickly wish you were back on the long haul version.

    Much better IFE than the old regional, but I found it very uncomfortable on my recent HKG-DPS round trip. Singapore definitely has CX beat with their current regional business class.

  6. Nice little report. I am usually quite impressed with CX in the J cabin. How did you manage to get Grand Hyatt Bangkok for 2400THB ; )

  7. @theflyingsikh

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but [me] thinks Gary means that he got from the airport to the hotel, arranged by the Grand Hyatt, for 2400 Baht which was inclusive of the tram ride from the gate to customs—-which wasn’t there due to his late arrival.

    Same same for me when I did my very first Thailand arrival at Don Muaung with the Holiday Inn (1200 Baht in 2003). After that I discovered the Airport Bus (100 Baht) and figured out Thailand very quickly.

    At the new BKK airport, I just use the SkyTrain.

  8. Glad you didn’t have to experience Business Class Auckland to Hong Kong on the A 340 like we did yesterday! OMG – the single worst Business Class seats we have either seen or even imagined. If anyone ever saw the movie Temple Grandin, I felt like the cattle she put in the container. They may boast privacy but I have never felt so confined – and it was for 11 friggin hours! I know this sounds like hyperbole but economy may have been better. Only good news is when we landed, we got to go to The Wing First lounge, got a cabana and finally boarded our flight to JFK in First Class. Sweet. But one long, long, long day!

  9. We have a BKK-HKG flight on CX J this summer and it’s supposed to be their regional seats. What are the chances we’ll get their long haul J on this flight? It’s almost 5 hours so it would definitely be nice. Looking forward to The Wing in HKG before our CX F flight to HND on their 744 and then JL F HND-SFO.

Comments are closed.