SEA 2014: Thai Airways A380 First Class Frankfurt to Bangkok (FRA to BKK)

I love Thai Airways. I don’t understand which blogger started the meme that Thai doesn’t have great service in the air, since I’ve only had superlative service experiences on Thai in first class. Or maybe it’s like a reverse racism thing where Asian people get better service on Thai than white people, similar to how white people get better service on Lufthansa than Asian people.

Thai A380 to Bangkok

Thai A380 to Bangkok

I received a very warm welcome on board. My special meal request of VGML was proactively confirmed, and slippers and a Rimowa amenity kit were already at the seat.

The seat is spacious and comfortable. It’s not a fully enclosed suite, but I think I prefer non-suites anyway since it makes the cabin feel airier. There’s tons of storage space at the seat, particularly for window seats. The in-flight entertainment had a decent selection and was very responsive.

First class seat

First class seat

Ottoman, table, and IFE screen

Ottoman, table, and IFE screen

Tons of storage at the seat

Tons of storage at the seat

More seat storage, controls, and screen of unknown function

More seat storage, controls, and screen of unknown function

View across the cabin

View across the cabin

Since first class is on the upper deck of the A380 for Thai, there are two large spaces to fill. Emirates has two showers; Lufthansa has bathrooms with urinals; Thai has a “lounge” on one side and a large bathroom on the other. The lounge is nothing special; the bathroom feels a little oddly divided, but I appreciate having lots of space to change.

First class "lounge"

First class “lounge”

Sizable first class bathroom

Sizable first class bathroom

Yes, it's a toilet on an airplane

Yes, it’s a toilet on an airplane

For this flight, the load was 9/12. It looked like there were a couple of other people on miles in the cabin as I wasn’t the only person excitedly snapping photos of the cabin.

First class menu

First class menu

First class wine

First class wine

Dom Perignon 2004 on offer

Dom Perignon 2004 on offer

After takeoff, I was served Dom 2004 and some unsalted nuts. The stemware isn’t fancy, but I appreciate the 2004 vintage over the 2003 one. I like my nuts salted, though.

Obligatory Dom + nuts shot

Obligatory Dom + nuts shot

Now, I’m not sure how much my VGML was affected by being catered out of Frankfurt instead of Bangkok, but it wasn’t good. Like this meal was some of the worst food I’ve had on a plane in any class of service. The first course was bread with vegetables on top. But not good bread or anything–just wonderbread-y bread with controversial vegetable choices.

VGML canapes

VGML canapes

After the not-so-great canapes, I decided to partake in caviar service. I find it a little excessive that they serve each passenger his/her own bread basket.

Caviar

Caviar

Up next was the worst food I’ve ever been served on a plane. If you can’t identify what’s on this plate, there’s extremely salty and soggy fried cauliflower, raw mushrooms, unidentifiable and disgusting mush, and artichokes. I tried to find something to like, but this was honestly terrible.

VGML appetizer. This was disgusting.

VGML appetizer. This was disgusting.

The VGML main course wasn’t much better. At least there was rice, which is hard to screw up. The rest of the plate was overcooked broccoli and carrots, way too many mushrooms, and a disturbing white sauce.

VGML main. Not much better.

VGML main. Not much better.

After the pretty horrendous meal (I know, it’s my own fault for getting a VGML), I decided to skip dessert and just get my bed made. The seat didn’t seem to go completely lie flat, but it was still very comfortable. The bedding isn’t as nice as other carriers like Cathay or Lufthansa, but it’s still adequate, and better than carriers like Asiana.

Bed mode

Bed mode

More bed

More bed

After sleeping for a bit, I asked for a snack of the yellow noodles with roast pork and fresh fruit. The flight attendant proactively offered to make the noodles vegetarian, which I greatly appreciated. Asian noodles are hard to mess up, and this was pretty darn tasty. I should’ve just gotten this for my first meal service.

Mid-flight snack (tasty!)

Mid-flight snack (tasty!)

For breakfast, I started off with fresh fruit, yogurt, and breads. Again, you get an entire bread basket to yourself, and I thought the almond twist in the basket was super duper tasty.

Breakfast

Breakfast

The VGML breakfast wasn’t great, but at least it wasn’t terrible like the dinner service. Potatoes, spinach, mushroom, tomato, and odd fried cake thingies. Not great, but at least edible.

VGML breakfast

VGML breakfast

As we got ready to land, a member of the crew went around the first class cabin and thanked each passenger for flying Thai and offered a deck of cards featuring the Thai A380. It was a nice token.

Yes, the dinner service was the worst meal I’ve ever had on an airplane, but the service on Thai is awesome. The hard product on the A380 is solid (as is the new hard product on their 747s, which I believe is all but one now), and I’ve been told that the normal Thai food on the menu is quite good. Overall, I’m a huge fan.

 

8 thoughts on “SEA 2014: Thai Airways A380 First Class Frankfurt to Bangkok (FRA to BKK)

  1. caveman

    I am also flying Thai FRA-BKK in F late December but unfortunately my carrier is A-340 and I am not very excited about it. My connecting flight is in business with a 6 hours layover. Do you know if I will get first class lounge? I want to experience the one hour massage but I am not sure if they will allow that

    Reply
    1. Edward Post author

      If you’re connecting to business class, you’ll get access to the first class lounge but you’ll be offered a half-hour massage, although YMMV.

      Reply
  2. steve

    Wow, the food looks, well, unappetizing, indeed. Flew ANA, Asiana, EVA, Thai J class. Of those ANA was the best for food quality/taste, selection. EVA was second although not by much, followed by Thai, and Asiana came in last. My exprience: food for the Western pallet can be very iffy on Asiatic carriers when flying out of/within Asia. Beware and try to get some info. on menus/reviews beforehand, might save some grief. One can even encounter European/N American carriers flying out of Asia having dubious tasting food. It might pay to buy Micky D’s before you board as a backup, or buy a box of Top Ramen and ask the stewardess to give you some hot water! Sure, they’ll look at you funny, but what a way to send a signal that their airlines food stinks.

    Reply
    1. Edward Post author

      I definitely look at trip reports before flying to see if I should make any special accommodations for food, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen another trip report in first class where the person has pre-ordered a vegetarian meal.

      I actually generally prefer catering out of Asia, unless that Asian country is China, mostly because I’ll almost always choose the Asian options.

      Reply
  3. choi

    Just came back from a similar trip except it was ord-fra-bkk in F , Luth and Thai. you are certainly correct as I m also an Asian, that on Luth flight, if you are caucasian that speak German, then the service is very different. my observation on Thais was they pretty much treat everyone the same.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *