Early 2020 AD. Timothy and I embark on a 21st century Odyssey. On the Majestic Princess from Sydney to New Caledonia, Vanuatu and Fiji. Back to Sydney, then to Melbourne and flying back home.
After our nice (short) visit to the Swiss Business Class Lounge in Zurich, the time had come to board our flight to Bangkok. We managed to arrive just in time at the gate so we could board almost immediately. Boarding priorities where respected with first people needing assistance, followed by first class and then us business class passengers.
From Zurich (ZRH) 17:55 to Bangkok (BKK) 10:35
Flight Time 9 hours and 45 minutes
Boeing 777-300ER HB-JNF
Delivered to Swiss in July 2016
In the plane we were welcomed by the cabin crew and directed to the correct aisles. The plane operating the flight was a Boeing 777-300ER, the flagship of the Swiss long-haul fleet. The business class was divided in two cabins, a small cabin just behind first class between doors L1 and L2 and a bigger main cabin behind door L2 where we were seated. The seats where in a staggered 1-2-2 or 2-2-1 configuration, and had a nice elegant and understated design with some warm wood finishes.
As soon as we got to our seat the cabin crew offered to stow our winter coats away, using the dedicated hangers with the seat number provided at each seat. Provided on each seat was also a big pillow and a blanket, some nice over ear but not noise cancelling headphones and a bottle of water in a water bottle holder.
Timothy and I both had a seat in the middle of the cabin, but because of the configuration the design and storage options differed somewhat.
While my seat was nicely enclosed with a cupboard to store my shoes on my right under the feet of the person behind me and a nice rack offering more than enough space to store all sorts of stuff, Timothy’s seat offered a lot less possibilities to store stuff with only a small cupboard under the touchscreen and some space on the divider in between our seats.
Locating the power port on my seat was easy, but we had to ask the flight attendant to help locate the power port on Timothy’s seat (which he also struggled with to find).
The tray tables where located in between both seats and released by a push on the button. They could be used in the upright position to provide more privacy if required.
On the ground we received a welcome drink, which we enjoyed with a glass of champagne, followed by a hot towel.
Apparently recently Swiss stopped providing amenity kits in business class on long-haul flights and instead the cabin crew came around with baskets offering eye shades, ear plugs and toothbrushes for people desiring them. They also offered some more amenities like lotions and facial mist in the toilets.
Afterwards we received our menus for the flight with a separate card to fill in to decide what you wanted for breakfast and if the cabin crew should wake you up for breakfast or not.
Soon we were pushed back and on our way to sunny Asia. During take-off I missed an outside camera (like on Cathay and Lufthansa) to see some more of the action as we were seated in the middle on the plane, which in my opinion would have been a nice addition.
After take-off we first received an aperitif service. I selected one of the cocktails on the menu, some mango mixed with rum alongside a mix of nuts. We had a choice of two appetizers and three main courses for dinner. I chose the smoked Char for the appetizer while Timothy opted for the chicken as an appetizer instead.
We both had the beef as the main course.
Along with the meal I had some excellent Swiss red wine and a glass of water.
The cheese course was already on the tray so it could reach the right temperature.
We finished of the meal with a nice cake and some tea, Timothy also opted to have some Swiss chocolates while I already turned my seat into bed mode for a night of sleep.
The fully lie-flat seat provided a nice sleep, it was long enough but a bit narrow if you prefer to sleep on your side.
During the flight there was a snack basket in the galley with some fruit, sweets and drinks. The service on board by the crew was fantastic and exceeded my expectations, one of the moments they showed their true service oriented attitude was when I woke up to go to the toilet that the flight attendant on duty asked whether I would like to drink something and delivered it to my seat.
About two hours prior to landing the breakfast service began in a dimmed cabin, only serving those who requested a breakfast on their breakfast card allowing the rest of the cabin an optimal sleep. The breakfast was of a nice quality and because you selected yourself what you wanted to have the portion size matched what you liked.
Arrival into Bangkok was smooth and on time, as we did not receive our boarding passes for our connecting flight to Sydney we first had to find the way to the transfer desk.
All in all we had a very enjoyable flight on Swiss and they more than exceeded our expectations. Despite being in the same Lufthansa group and offering a similar hard product the service and quality of Swiss really sets them in a different league than Brussels Airlines.