Getting to Sapporo, or Niseko from Hong Kong during wintertime is never an easy thing to do, especially if you want to use miles. I had some United Miles I wanted to use so I had to fly on a Star Alliance carrier. The natural routing would be to take UA or NH to Tokyo, then change to a NH domestic flight, but all of the flights from HKG – NRT/HND where booked using awards on the date I wanted to travel, so I decided on Thai Airways.
TG has a new flight which started this fall, from Bangkok to Sapporo, 4x a week.
It’s a bit weird to fly south to go to a northern destination, but I thought the times were quite good.
- TG607 leaves Hong Kong at 845pm, arrive Bangkok 1030pm
- TG670 leaves Bangkok at 1145pm, arrive Sapporo 800am the next morning.
Normally if you connect in Japan you’d have to leave very early and arrive in Sapporo in the evening, wasting a whole day traveling. With the Thai Airways flight, you can arrive in Sapporo in the morning and have a whole day ahead of you. The connection in Bangkok is short and easy enough, and there’s no requirements to go through immigration formalities there.
Seating is normal, nothing really special to note, except that the seats recline REALLY FAR back. The most recline I’ve ever seen in economy. This insane amount of recline is great for this red eye flight where you can sleep in relative comfort. Just don’t except to be using your ipad or notebook computer if the guy in front decides to recline.
Food was ok, certainly adequate. Got dinner on the flight from HKG to BKK. Then breakfast from BKK – CTS where there were a whopping three choices, I had the congee.
Flight service was fine, nothing particularly good or bad to mention. However, the baggage claim was a completely different story. Upon reaching Sapporo, I waited 2.5 hours for the bags, since they said the cargo container froze and they couldn’t open the doors. What a nightmare, the Japan agents didn’t provide any announcements in English (or Thai for that matter) and estimated time was always unknown. Finally they got the door open, but it really was a disaster and they were not prepared for such an instance.