Los Angeles to Hong Kong is a route our family members has on a regular basis been flying for more than 15 years. As loyal oneworld Alliance members, we commonly fly Cathay Pacific. Nonetheless, American Airlines introduced its personal LAX-HKG route not too long ago on a Boeing 777-300ER. With the fares in our favor, my daughter and I gave it a go on our most current trip.
We flew enterprise class from Los Angeles to Hong Kong, and I was capable to use my Executive Platinum systemwide upgrades to fly very first class from Hong Kong to Los Angeles, which I’ll cover separately.
We’ve flown American Airlines enterprise class to Shanghai, Beijing, and Seoul various occasions on a 787 but the flight to Hong Kong gives a couple of additional amenities that these lengthy haul flights do not.
I’ll start out by saying that it was a superior flight. But, if you are employed to flying Cathay Pacific like we are, you may well uncover it a tiny disappointing.
Admirals Club/Flagship Lounge at LAX
This flight requires off from Terminal four at LAX, which suggests that you will use the Admirals Club or Flagship Lounge there. Both were renovated in 2017.
We use the Flagship Lounge due to my Executive Platinum status. The Flagship Lounge gives a decent buffet featuring cheese, charcuterie, desserts and random major courses from about the globe (the latter are in some cases great and in some cases just okay). I especially like the self-serve wine and champagne region, even though spirits and a lot of nonalcoholic drinks are obtainable, as well.
Even as Executive Platinum, to use the Flagship Lounge’s private dining region you have to be flying in very first class. Enterprise class, even on a plane with no very first class like quite a few of the 787s that fly to Seoul and China, does not count. I uncover this disappointing but provided how busy the lounge is, I comprehend. This tiny posh dining region would be complete to the brim otherwise.
The flight from Los Angeles to Hong Kong departs at 12:55 a.m., which is late. Nonetheless, it does arrive later in the morning (7:20 a.m. HKT) than other overnight Hong Kong flights. This offers you much less of a gap amongst arrival and when Hong Kong attractions and shops may well open. The target with a flight like this is to do what it requires to keep awake all day and as late as doable into the evening to steer clear of jet lag.
Our gate was heaving with men and women clustered about the boarding region. As we have a tendency to arrive appropriate as boarding is announced, I had problems obtaining to the front to board with our group. It appears that quite a few American Airlines travelers nonetheless do not comprehend that the airline boards by group quantity, which is printed on your actual ticket.
We arrived at our middle seats (it is a 1-two-1 enterprise class configuration). I avoided middle seats when my daughter was younger to steer clear of possessing to stroll all the way about and by means of the galley to assistance her with issues. Parents with younger young children might want to take into account a window and an aisle seat for additional comfy back and forth access.
Predeparture drinks have been handed out (champagne, orange juice, and water in plastic glasses). Nonetheless, I was skipped simply because I was placing my luggage in the overhead bin when the tray was getting passed. I figured an individual would return to give a drink once more, but no a single did. I commonly would have asked for a single, but it was late, and I’d had a couple of in the lounge. No large deal, but nonetheless an oversight.
Newspapers and pajamas have been passed out subsequent. I didn’t take the pajamas on this leg, but I really should have. They’re thin but fairly good as they comfortably cuff at the ankle to stop drag on airplane bathroom floors. I really put on them at household. Pajamas are not passed out in enterprise class on Cathay Pacific (only in very first class) so this is a single spot exactly where American Airlines stands out.
Behind very first class is a tiny enterprise class section of two rows that really feel like they’re in a tiny enclave. I chose the rear of these two rows, seats 4D and 4G, pondering that the further privacy may well be valuable.
I will in no way opt for these seats once more. The galley is appropriate behind them and incredibly noisy, largely with conversation. Even with earplugs in, it was a struggle to sleep. The a single factor I did like was getting capable to appear up at any time to see the tiny tv above our aisle that displayed specifically exactly where we have been and time to landing. Positive, it is doable to dial this details up on your television but why bother if you do not have to.
Good Lie-Flat Seats
The seats are comfy. In addition to a pillow and comforter, a tiny mattress pad which does make a distinction can be added on by the flight attendants when you want it. For most, this is following the very first meal service.
Amenity kits have been waiting in our seats. They’re a new collaboration with This is Ground, a leather accessory organization. The high-quality of the pouch is the very first factor I noticed.
The leather is super soft and, truthfully, it is good not to place a cloth kit on a wet bathroom counter accidentally. Amenities inside function goods by Allies of Skin, Zenology, and Baxter of California and contain an eye mask, earplugs, a toothbrush, and toothpaste. Colors and shape differ by class and route.
Shortly following takeoff, the pilot gave his flight announcement and vowed not to speak once more till landing so that men and women could get some sleep. That is precisely what occurred. The seat belt sign was turned on and off various occasions all through the virtually 16-hour flight, as a single would count on, but with no announcement.
When you are excited to head to a location, it is good to be capable to have a tiny nearby fare to consume, even on the plane. This commonly is the case. I had fantastic bibimbap on American Airlines to Seoul not too long ago, for instance.
The only Cantonese or even Chinese alternative on the menu was Hong Kong style milk tea.
All courses are served at as soon as throughout the very first meal except for the common American Airlines warm nuts that accompany the very first drink service. This is most likely simply because it is a late evening flight.
My daughter opted for the Thai green curry and stated it was superior. My steak was just okay and a bit as well effectively carried out. We have been each as well complete and tired for dessert but could have selected a cheese plate or common American Airlines sundae (often a hit).
Nonetheless, on Cathay Pacific, the very first meal on overnight flights is nonetheless served in numerous courses albeit speedy ones. I favor this as it feels a bit additional upscale (specifically provided the value of these tickets). We also frequently fly Japan Airlines to Hong Kong through Tokyo and their meals, as well, are served in courses.
Later in the flight, my daughter opted for the sliders (incredibly superior, she stated) and I ordered the antipasto plate. I wasn’t in the mood for sliders or this, but it was superior. Two selections for midflight snacks is a bit slim.
I do not have pictures, but the galley did give superior selections if you weren’t in the mood for sliders or antipasto. Tiny dishes with cutup fruit salad, many tiny sandwiches, and the other snacks covered with cellophane there was additional my speed. A good selection of gourmet chips, chocolate, and other individually packaged snacks awaited in the galley as effectively.
Flight attendants served breakfast a couple of hours ahead of landing. I’m employed to consuming dim sum for breakfast ahead of landing in Hong Kong, but the conventional American breakfast was fine. I want that there was yet another bakery alternative other than croissants (we could opt for from plain or chocolate croissants). The skinless mango bowl was a good, scrumptious touch. A smoothie was served ahead of breakfast, as well. It is a lot of meals which is best as we have been starving.
Onboard entertainment in American Airlines premium class cabins is fantastic. It is not possible to run out of motion pictures, documentaries, concerts and tv shows to watch.
Bose noise canceling headsets are offered in each enterprise and very first class seat, but like other American Airlines flights (I’m told this carried out for customs inventory), flight attendants gather them effectively ahead of the flight lands, someplace amongst 45 minutes to an hour.
You will be provided some earbuds with such poor high-quality that it is challenging to hear the sound. Make confident they give you an adapter so that the headphones send audio to each ears. Otherwise you will only hear with only a single (miserable). I nonetheless carry Bose QuietComfort earbuds with an adapter for this incredibly cause. If you do not have an adapter for your earbuds, ask for a single immediately as I assume they are in restricted provide on the plane.
The Bottom Line
The flight took off as scheduled and landed a tiny bit early.
Flight attendants have been pleasant. It is an American style of service, which tends to make sense. I woke up numerous occasions when flight attendants serviced other passengers. It is not a damaging, but I mention this simply because if you are employed to flying to Hong Kong on Japan Airlines (through Tokyo) or Cathay Pacific, exactly where employees-passenger interactions have a tendency to be quieter, you will notice a distinction in the service.
It is a superior flight with lie-flat seats if you can catch it at a value that suits you. Cathay Pacific all round is a nicer practical experience (so is Japan Airlines), but American Airlines AAdvantage members commonly earn additional elite qualifying dollars when flying American metal to Hong Kong in enterprise class, assuming they’re paying money for a ticket. I’ve run the numbers various occasions on various dates not too long ago and if paying money for enterprise class, American earns elite travelers additional of what they want to retain their status.
That getting stated, AAdvantage members can use miles and systemwide upgrades to upgrade from economy to premium economy, premium economy to enterprise class and enterprise class to very first class. Even even though Cathay Pacific is a oneworld Alliance member, you cannot use AAdvantage miles to upgrade on Cathay Pacific flights. And, trust me, it is becoming additional and additional tricky to use AAdvantage miles for complete tickets on Cathay Pacific.
So, you will want to do a worth calculation when it comes to cash and private preferences to choose which airline to opt for when flying to my favored city, Hong Kong.
Suggestions for When You Arrive in Hong Kong
I (and quite a few other folks) uncover that taking the Airport Express train from the airport to Tsing Yi, Kowloon and Central is easiest. From the airport to Central, it is a 24-minute ride. If you just want the train tickets, buy discount Airport Express tickets on Klook. Nonetheless, Airport Express train tickets are incorporated with the Hong Kong Pass for these who will sightsee throughout their keep.