Category Archives: Dragonair

Review: Dragonair Business Class A330-300 PEN to HKG

This flight was served by a three-class plane (i.e. with first class, business class, and economy class cabins), but it was sold as a two-class flight. I was able to select seats in the “first class” cabin, presumably because of my oneworld emerald status. There was only one other passenger seated in the first class cabin with me, even though business class was quite full.

The first class cabin has reverse herringbone seats. These are super comfortable seats and are roughly the same product as US Airways Envoy class (aka American Airlines A330s now) and American Airlines business class on their 777-300ERs. It’s also essentially the same product that Cathay Pacific has in business class on many of their planes. On this flight, the business class cabin has a regional business class configuration that’s essentially the same as the business class product that I flew from HKG to DPS.

First class seat

First class seat

View of the first class cabin

View of the first class cabin

Seat controls

Seat controls

IFE screen and foot area

IFE screen and foot area

Storage space for shoes

Storage space for shoes

Side storage

Side storage

These seats are great. They’re large and spacious. The cabin is only 8 seats on these planes, so it  feels extra private. The foot areas are slightly larger on the window seats than the center seats. There’s plenty of storage with overhead bins, under the footrest storage, side compartments, and shoe storage. The armrest is also adjustable to give you extra width when you’re lying flat.

When I boarded the plane, I was escorted to my seat in 1K. The flight crew was on their game and made sure to take care of the little things like unwrapping my blanket for me rather than just giving it to me in plastic. I was offered a pre-departure beverage of water or juices, but I definitely heard a champagne bottle pop, so other passengers were partaking in more festive drinks. Again, no hot towels on this flight, but they instead used packaged moist towelettes.

I was offered a newspaper from a cart, and I asked for a copy of the International New York Times, even though I didn’t see it on the cart. Magically, though, they produced a copy.

Food menu

Food menu

Drink menu

Drink menu

On this flight, I decided to pre-order a vegetarian Jain meal (VJML). This is similar to an AVML, but there’s no dairy, root or bulbous vegetables, or mushrooms. The first course of fruit was super tasty with nicely ripe fruit. The main course was similarly delicious with flavorful and spicy vegetables served with some bread. It was small portion, but it was a great and tasty meal.

Fresh fruit

Fresh fruit

Jain meal (VJML)

Jain meal (VJML)

Given how much I enjoyed the chilled Hong Kong style milk tea on my previous Dragonair flight, I had to have another on this flight. Seriously, order it! It’s delicious.

Chilled Hong Kong milk tea–my new favorite airplane drink

Chilled Hong Kong milk tea–my new favorite airplane drink

And even though it was completely unnecessary on this relatively short flight, I did try using the seat in lie-flat mode. Not only can you lower the armrest, but there’s also an additional flap that comes up to give you even more surface area to lie on.

Seat in lie-flat position

Seat in lie-flat position

Foot area while lie-flat

Foot area while lie-flat

Overall, I was super impressed by Dragonair. Great service, great food, and great hard product. What more could you ask for?

Review: Dragonair A330 Business Class HKG to DPS

From Hong Kong, I made my way to Bali flying Dragonair, the regional subsidiary of Cathay Pacific. This flight was operated by an A330 with a regional business class configuration.

A330 to Bali!

A330 to Bali!

Because this was a regional configuration, the seats were not lie-flat, but the cabin looked great, and it was perfectly comfortable for the 4.5 hour flight from HKG to DPS. Given that this is largely a leisure route, I wasn’t surprised that the load was pretty light in business class. There were only 13 seats taken (out of 42).

Business class cabin

Business class cabin

Regional business class seat

Regional business class seat

Seat-back IFE

Seat-back IFE

Seat controls and side storage

Seat controls and side storage

Seat fully reclined

Seat fully reclined

Seat guide

Seat guide

They didn’t offer any amenity kits on this flight, but they did go around offering a pre-departure beverage of water, juice, or a guava cocktail. They also handed out wet towels, but they were essentially packaged towelettes and not hot towels.

Food menu

Food menu

Drink menu

Drink menu

Given that I was pretty stuffed from eating in the awesome Cathay Pacific lounges during my layover, I asked that they hold my meal for a bit. The IFE selection was identical to the selection on my long-haul flight from the US.

One thing that I haven’t heard many people talking about is the canned Hong Kong style milk tea available on Dragonair. As far as I know, it’s only offered on Dragonair and not on Cathay Pacific, and HOLY MOLY is this stuff good. It was soooo delicious, but also super caloric and sugary and probably terrible for your health. But it’s something that I’ll look forward to whenever I fly Dragonair.

Ridiculously delicious canned milk tea

Ridiculously delicious canned milk tea

When I eventually did get my meal, it was a VGML, as requested. Up first was a pretty gross appetizer of cold mushrooms and vegetables.

VGML appetizer

VGML appetizer

The main course was pretty good. Just some basic vegetables with tomato sauce and rice, but perfectly edible.

VGML entree

VGML entree

One thing that I found a bit odd was that there appeared to be only one bathroom for business class. I can’t imagine that this would be very pleasant with a full business class cabin on a 4.5 hour flight.

Overall, this was an enjoyable flight, and Dragonair has a solid, reliable experience, just like Cathay Pacific. For regional flights, I might actually choose Dragonair over Cathay in the future just for the canned milk tea…