I was pretty excited to try Cathay Pacific First Class for the first time. I got a teaser of the First Class seat on my inbound flight from SGN. I already knew the seat was wide and comfortable. I spent a few hours the The Pier which was a nice lounge.
I’ve been pretty excited to check out Cathay Pacifics First Class Lounges. Based on my limited research are two main First Class lounges. The Wing has cabanas (enclosed suite with a day bed) and a Champagne bar. However, The Pier has recently-ish been remodeled and looks stunning. I decided to check out The Pier.
I had an overnight layover and was looking to get some proper rest before my Cathay Pacific First Class flight to ORD. I booked this Marriott for ~150 USD which didn’t seem to bad. While not attached to the airport there is a free shuttle that runs every half hour that drives the shirt drive between the airport and the hotel.
On December 31, 2018 I was browsing my news feed when I saw all these deal alerts for Cathay Pacific First Class from Vietnam to the USA round trip. Some fares were right below 1,000 while others were a tad more expensive. By the time I hopped on this I wound up booking SGN to ORD for ~1,200 round trip. I was pretty excited to try Cathay Pacific First Class. To position to SGN I booked Korean Airlines First Class (previous flight and lounge reviews). Korean Airlines is actually scaling back their First Class which is sad to hear (but not surprising). While Korean Airlines First Class isn’t a leading product it was good and easily available via points.
I was pretty excited for this flight. It’s not everyday I get to fly on an A380. It’s a bit sad that Asiana will be ending First Class service all together later in 2019. The First Class lounge was small but quiet which is always a plus these days.
I was pretty excited to try JAL as I’ve heard good things. I don’t have any points or miles with Oneworld carriers so I transferred AMEX MR points to British Airways Avios during a 30% bonus. This flight typically is pretty expensive as it’s between the two popular close in airports popular with business travelers. Unfortunately, British Airways just increased the cost of redemption. I redeemed just 15,000 Avios (~12,000 AMEX MR with the 30% bonus) for this flight. However, the price has now gone up to 16,500 Avios.
I was excited to check out this “lounge”. I put lounge in quotes as I think lounge isn’t the right world. This is really an addition to the business class lounge that is only accessable to first class customers. The lounge even has a connected door to the business class area which has a larger buffet and even an outdoor deck. However, the business class lounge tends to get pretty crowded.
I was traveling to Tokyo Narita with ANA in First Class which provided access to the Polaris Lounge. This lounge is considerably smaller than SFO but still had all the Polaris Lounge staples.
I was in the ANA Suites Lounge at Haneda once before (on a UA GlobalFirst ticket, RIP). I was impressed by the sit down dining service. However, the Suites Lounge in Narita doesn’t offer that. Furthermore, the Suites Lounge in Haneda only offers the dining service around the time of evening departures to accommodate an abbreviated onboard service. ANA has two suites lounge locations in Narita. Satellite 5 has a Business Class and Suites Lounge on the fourth floor. Satellite 4 has a Business Class on lounge on the second floor and the Suites Lounge on the fourth floor. I was at the Satellite 4 location. However, both locations are pretty much identical.
I was pretty excited for this flight. I read amazing things about ANA (and JAL) first class. I booked this round trip first class flight using Virgin Atlantic miles which was an excellent deal (especially since there was a transfer bonus using American Express Membership Rewards at the time). I left the United Polaris Lounge and arrived at the gate to get a print out of my boarding pass.