Short and Simple: Xiamen to Hong Kong, Cathay Dragon KA603
This was the return leg of a promotional fare booked a week or so in advance for $1,158.
At the airport
The checkin was quite fast and security and passport control also did not take very long. The departure gate was 16, just next to the contract lounge Cathay Dragon uses at gate 17.
The flight was operated by an Airbus A321 (registration B-HTK).
The seat had a USB port and television screen, as well as a power socket under the seat.
The entertainment system had the usual full range of Cathay Dragon offerings. It is much better since they started showing films on flights scheduled for under three hours, which they never used to do. I watched the end of a film on this flight which I had started on the outbound leg.
The boarding at gate 16 was slightly delayed. Getting onboard, there were newspapers at the galley which the crew offered.
Economy class looked about full. By the time we took off we were half an hour behind schedule. We flew into turbulence which lasted for a while, perhaps because we were at a low altitude given the length of the flight, as well as a typhoon fairly nearby. The turbulence abated somewhat though the approach was a bit choppy. Despite the late departure, we arrived at a gate in the remote terminal on schedule. As always, the remote terminal involves bussing to immigration.
This is a short flight and so the cabin crew have quite a lot to do. The seatbelt sign was not turned off until half an hour before landing, so they were rather busy. But there was only one very simple meal service and a water tray, so there was not that much to do. The crew on this flight was brusque and not as friendly as a typical Cathay Dragon cabin crew.
Food and Drink
This is a short flight, but the food and drink was still disappointing and appreciably more sparse than on the outbound leg. It consisted simply of a small warm chicken sandwich. I had requested a Hindu meal, but the standard meal was essentially the same.
No drinks were offered except water from a large bottle, although when I asked for something else the cabin crew obliged.
Cathay Dragon charges its usual premium pricing for this flight but as it was so short there was not much to appreciate about the service at least.