Hong Kong to Brisbane: QF or CX?

Hong Kong and Brisbane have equally comfortable seats on their A330 aircraft. Which should you choose?

  • Business Class: Cathay. Cathay has its new wide product with direct aisle access and fully flat beds. Qantas will have a comparable, but not better product by early 2015.
  • Economy Class: Cathay (again). The problem with Qantas, which will exceed Cathay by 2015 in the new A330 configuration, is that they use an old product across to Hong Kong. Brisbane, unlike Sydney, sees a QF A330.

United’s Business Class: Would you rather fly forward or backward?

United states its seats as “fully flat”, and yes, it is parallel to the cabin floor, but since airplanes fly 3 degrees nose up, they are not parallel to Earth’s floor.


These forward-backward seats each lie at the same angle, but they are not flat, and they are not equal. The seats facing backward are 3 degrees angled towards the floor, and the seats facing forward are 3 degrees angled towards the ceiling.

The downside to backward facing seats are its awkwardness and the fact that you may have a small tendency to slide off the seat. The downside to forward facing seats is that the blood goes to your head (unless you put the seat slightly up so your head is parallel to Earth).

Which would you choose?

EVA Air’s flights to Taipei – and our recommendations

  1. BR 828 07:30 – 09:10 A321 Not recommended – bad product, and too early for leisure travellers.
  2. BR 892 09:50 – 11:30 B777-300ER (Wednesdays) Recommended – really, but only on Wednesdays.
  3. BR 852 11:10 – 12:50 A330-200 (non Mon, Thu or Sat) Recommended – but the B747-400 Combi is really not ideal, so we outrule Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
  4. BR 868 13:40 – 15:20 A330-200 (non Wed) We recommend this but Wednesdays (on the MD-90) – we’ve never tried, you could be adventurous.
  5. BR 870 15:30 – 17:10 A330-200 (Tue, Thur, Sat) If you want a normal flying experience (no non-PTV or McDonnell MD-90 austerity), then take the Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday flight.
  6. BR 856 17:05 – 18:45 A330-200 (non Mon, Thu or Sat) Try not to take the B747-400 Combi on Mondays, Thursdays or Saturdays. They’re just…not that good.
  7. BR 872 19:25 – 21:05 B747-400 (Wed) We actually put this over the Combi verson and the A330-200 – give it a try. You may be satisfied.
  8. BR 858 21:00 – 22:40 A330-200 (Daily) Take the Hello Kitty flight if you can. It’s awesome.
  9. BR 810 21:45 – 23:25 A321/MD-90 One to be avoided. Especially when there’s this excellent flight right before this one.

EVA Air Hello Kitty on Hong Kong routes (actually, for some time already)

Cathay and airlines like Hong Kong Airlines etc. offer quite nice service to Taipei, but you can never forget the EVA Air experience. EVA Air offers normal service and slightly better service on some flights. Which flights are that? Hong Kong Airline News knows the answers:

  1. BR 857 TPE – HKG 18:10 – 19:50
  2. BR 858 HKG – TPE 21:00 – 22:45

These Hello Kitty Special Service flights offer better IFE system and refurbished headrests as well as Hello Kitty Toilet Paper. The service isn’t actually different, but you know you’re a VIP when you hear the Christmassy music (?) when you board the plane.

For Hong Kongers to Taipei, we recommend BR 852/892 on the inbound but we highly recommend BR 857 on your return.

Cathay Pacific to start flights to Malé

Cathay Pacific is planning to start a round trip to Malé, with not perfect but I-can-live-with-it schedules:

  • CX 601 on its A330s (with new product) 17:15 – 21:25
  • CX 602 on its A330s (same product as above) 23:35 – 08:55 the next day.

Malé is the perfect getaway for travellers, and these flights should make a good option that exceeds the luxury of Hong Kong Airlines and Mega Maldives.

Hong Kong to Narita on CX: Preferred Routes

On Cathay Pacific, there are four direct flights from HKG to NRT that all operate daily, and all of them operate on different aircraft. Some of them even operate on different days. Here’s a nutshell of which flights are best for each day:


  1. CX 524 (01:00 – 06:10) A330-300 This has a very comfortable product and has Premium Economy and Cirrus Business Class.
  2. CX 504 (09:10 – 14:40) B777-300 This has the old shell Economy Class, but has a brand new Business Class refit.
  3. CX 500 (15:10 – 20:30) B777-300 This has the same product as CX 504. However that is left with one major problem: this flight leaves quite early for Japanese passengers and arrives very late for Hong Kong passengers. Time is important too…
  4. CX 520 (10:35 – 15:55) A330-300 This has the shell Economy product as well, but the older Business product that is not idyllic for most business travellers.


All the routes have the same products except:

  1. CX 500 (15:10 – 20:30) B777-200 Very old products. Hope this aircraft type will be eliminated from CX fleet or changed soon with new (no shell) products. Last place for now.


  1. CX 524 (01:00 – 06:10) A330-300 Very consistent product eh? Awesome product.
  2. CX 504 (09:10 – 14:40) B777-300 Very consistent product as well.
  3. CX 520 (10:35 – 15:55) B777-200 Again, the ancient product.
  4. CX 500 (15:10 – 20:30) B777-200 Same as CX 520


  1. CX 520 (10:35 – 15:55) B777-300ER This is one of the flights you should make a grab for. It has a daytime service with a wide business class and premium economy, and should be traveller grab (unless you are a business traveller, in that case take CX 524)…
  2. CX 524 (01:00 – 06:10) A330-300 Same as its normal product.
  3. CX 504 (09:05 – 14:40) B777-300 Once again, welcome regional perfection.
  4. CX 500 (15:10 – 20:30) B777-300 Same as CX 504 once again.


Same as Tuesday.


Same as Friday except CX 500 (15:10 – 20:30) runs on an A330.


Same as Thursday (grab CX 520 if you can) except CX 500 (15:10 – 20:30) runs on a B777-200 (one to avoid).