Trip Report: Hong Kong to Paris Charles de Gaulle, Cathay Pacific flight CX261, economy class

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Checkin

I arrived at Hong Kong airport some hours before the scheduled departure. There was a short queue for checkin. The ground agent advised that the flight was ninety five to nine seven per cent full, which boded well for an upgrade, but none was to arrive. Last time I reported on this flight was in first class, so this ride would be a different experience.

At the airport

The flight left from gate 67.

Equipment

The flight was operated by a Boeing 777-300ER (registration B-KPU).

The seat had a USB port beneath the screen and a plug socket underneath the seat. Upon boarding there was a decent pillow and blanket on the seat. The seat had an adjustable headrest and a decent recline. Nonetheless, it did not feel spacious. Perhaps because the flight was so busy, I imagined what Cathay’s 777 long haul flights will be like when they squeeze another seat into the row. Already on this flight I felt there was little spare room, the reconfigured planes will surely feel markedly less comfortable still.

Flight

The plane was indeed busy – I did not see any empty seats in the economy cabin.

This was a very smooth flight, up eastern China then across Russia and down through Scandinavia.

We pushed back two minutes after schedule and arrived at terminal 2 in Paris a few minutes behind schedule. Charles de Gaulle can be a bit of a zoo depending on when and where in it one is – on this occasion, there was a long walk to immigration being jostled by the combined politeness of French and mainland passengers aplenty. That said, the queue for immigration was in fact quite short and as the booths were well manned, moved fast. There was then another twenty minute or so wait for checked baggage to arrive.

Service

The cabin crew on this plane was fine but unremarkable. At the start they felt a little too rushed though after the first meal service that was less noticeable.

Food and Drink

The crew distributed a paper menu with the options as follows.

I chose the chicken, which was decent enough. With such a late departure, though, one’s appetite for dinner was limited, especially as the cabin lights were soon dimmed.

For breakfast I had the western choice, which was tasty and not overcooked. For an economy class flight I thought that this was a good breakfast.

Conclusion

This was a perfectly serviceable flight, no more and no less.

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