China Eastern A321 Economy Class

When I booked a PVG – HKG – PVG – HKG mileage run (one run each day this time), I figured I had no way to get to Shanghai before my “doctor’s meeting” up there. To mix things up (I already had three Dragonair legs…I’m having my meeting tomorrow, flying to Hong Kong on KA 897 tomorrow night and doing the second run on the same airline the next day), I booked China Eastern, one of the three million Skyteam airlines China has. Of course, as only HX and FM codeshare on the route, I had to book Economy as cash was the only option. I took the earliest available flight, which was to Hongqiao Airport – right next to my office and dormitory, so no problem for me.

I did the China Eastern leg this afternoon, and while a full trip report is yet to come, here are my general impressions:

China Eastern A321 Economy Seat

While the site mentions this flight as an A330-300, it’s actually run by an A321 every day, so be prepared.

China Eastern has a rather solid economy seat on their aircraft. I’d say it’s comparable to Dragonair’s old A320 economy, but with better padding and recline.

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The seat even has an adjustable headrest (which even Dragonair doesn’t have), so it’s more than enough for a two hour flight.

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China Eastern A321 Economy Food

The food was really solid, but not especially outstanding, in my opinion.

We were served everything on a single tray, and while the food was nice and flavorful, it was a little too starchy and the rice slightly dry. China Eastern only has once choice in Economy for a flight of this length.

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Well, we did get Häagen-Dazs ice cream, and I’m not complaining…

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China Eastern A321 Economy Service

The flight attendants were simply bland. They weren’t actively rude, but out of all flights I’ve taken this probably has the worst service. All trays and landing forms were passed to you from the passenger next to you, and the flight attendant didn’t risk her life to actually place the tray right on our tray tables. Okay, so this is short haul Chinese economy class, so I’m not complaining either here…

Bottom line on China Southern A321 Economy

China Eastern has a really solid economy product on their A321s. They have adequate (but just borderline edible) food, a comfortable seat, and at least they had service, even if it wasn’t what I normally expect from my Dragonair flights. The two good things were, the flight was dirt cheap at ~HK$1000, and the cabin color tones weren’t crap.

The latter is a good thing, because the landings in Shanghai are…

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