TRIP REPORT: China Airlines 777-300ER Economy Class November 2014

CAL economy 2

Flight: CI791
Aircraft Type: B777-300ER
Class: Economy Class (Family Couch Seats)
Route: TPE-HAN
Date: November 2014

www.china-airlines.com

Best for: Affordable customisable luxury at an economy class price tag.
Most likely to sit next to: Savvy cool Trans-pacific travellers
Business or pleasure: This airline is built for business. Great schedules, frequent services, good connections and wifi onboard, means for a logical choice for those on business.
Routes: Mainly intra-asia, however the 777-300ER will be flown on its long haul routes to the US to start with, followed by Europe.
Frequent Flyer Programme: Dynasty Flyer. All the usual perks attached to a four tier frequent flyer program, but with the added benefit of being attached to Skyteam, with farther reaching benefits around the world.
Best bits: The brand new plane-smell and the brand new seats
Worst bits: Need more long haul routes!

China Airlines B777-300ER Economy Class Report

Trip reportWe have been writing about the China Airlines 777-300ER for quite some time, as the airline is one of a handful of carriers that are really reinventing their passenger experience from the ground up. Both Fiji Airways and Etihad have both also done the same recently with their new products. When we were invited to test out China Airlines product on one of their regional test flights for the new long haul product we jumped at the chance, and decided to write up the experience as a business, premium economy and economy traveller in one hit (sift through the site for more reviews). It’s hard not to be impressed by a carrier who decided to invest heavily into creating a truly industry leading product, utilising already existing products to bring the best of the market to the skies in one perfectly packaged aircraft.

On the Ground

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As we were connecting from Europe on the airline’s previous business class product, we were warmly greeted off the flight in Taiwan, and escorted to the lounge for our flight on the 777. Whilst not normal practice to be greeted, we realised connecting in Taipei was both efficient and fast. The route was well signposted, and we were off the plane, through security and in the lounge within 10 minutes.

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For those checking-in in Taipei or Los Angeles (to start with), expect the usual economy class check-in, which depending on the time of day can have no queue at all, our advice though is check in early, the airport has a wealth of shopping and dining options to keep you entertained. The main Taipei Airport has large waiting areas situated one level down at each gate, and each gate is has a different theme based on Taiwanese tradition. These segragated departure gates gives the illusion of a much emptier airport than it actually is. The airport itself also has some beautiful and understated elements, such as living walls, and beautiful ‘webbed’ architectural details along some of the long walkways.

China Airlines Business Class Trip Report

Once boarding, Business Class and Premium Economy passengers are invited to board first, as are Sky Priority members, so if you are a member of SkyTeam, its worth while taking a few flights with the alliance to build up your status, to enjoy earlier boarding to make yourself comfortable.

8 comments

  1. Alan Tang

    Great improvements, I am a big fan of the colours used for the economy seats, brown and orange. The brown seats do remind me of Garuda Indonesia’s economy seats with little pattern on each seat and sky blue covers for the headrest. Still very interesting improvement tho, the cabin looks sharp and brand new. Another great airline comes from Skyteam!

  2. pukoh

    Every time i see the “Most likely to sit next to:” in your reviews it makes me cringe.

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  4. Kris T

    I’m surprised at the complimentary review of 10 abreast in economy on a 777. This aircraft was not designed for 10 narrow 17″ wide seats with window seat passengers jammed against the sidewall, narrow aisles, and packed passengers rubbing elbows. There is absolutely no reason to fly a China Airlines 777-300ER when other airlines competing on the same routes offer vastly more comfortable 18″ wide 9 abreast economy seats. If China Airlines was offering substantial discounts for packing more passengers into the same space, then maybe they would be worth the misery on a long haul flight. Comparing fares, China Airlines seems to think they are offering a superior product when in fact they are not. I’ll fly EVA Air from LAX-TPE any day! As economy class passengers, we accept we’re not in the luxury cabins. I don’t accept a miserable seat for a long haul flight. No thanks China Airlines!

  5. Lou

    Kris, I’m considering booking LAX-BKK for $599RT, that is a pretty decent discount if you ask me!

  6. Roger Yin

    I can not agree more. 777 is much narrower then the 747, so it’s designed as a 3-3-3 arrangement, as 3-4-3 for the 747. For the 12+ hour flight! an inch wider seat makes difference. Considering China Airlines safety record…….tight seat with narrow isle, and packed with people….not good. I have taken China Airlines flights for last 20 years or so between Taipei and Los Angeles, not any more. I will spend few dollars more to fly Eva any time. I am sorry CI, your greed lost another loyal customer for good.

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  8. jackie

    umm, if you have 2 adults and one child, I can’t imagine this family couch will fit.

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