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Aloft To Asia – Korean Air Business Class In Forward Cabin

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I entered the Korean Air 777 and turned right to towards my seat 8 J in the smaller and more intimate Prestige Class cabin. I picked the smaller cabin for the 13+ hour flight back to the states because I wanted to try something other than the larger cabin I had during my outbound flight in Korean Air’s Prestige Class.

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Boarding The Korean Air 777

We boarded from the forward door. This meant, the Prestige Class passengers in the forward cabin would pass through First Class on the way to their smaller Prestige Class cabin.

KE 777 Entrance

The First Class seats looked nice. For giggles, I asked the gate agent before boarding what it would cost to upgrade my revenue Prestige Class ticket to First Class. She looked very surprised and made a few calls. After a few moments, she said:

Gate Agent: Do you really want to hear the upgrade price?

Weekly Flyer: Sure

Gate Agent: It will be an addition $5,500+ to upgrade sir

Weekly Flyer: When does Business Class boarding begin?

There would be no way, I’d pay that upgrade fee. On the bright side, it was good to hear the upgrade at the gate is an option.

Korean Air First Class

After I passed the two rows in First Class, I settled in the second row of Prestige Class in the forward cabin. The cabin was configured with 2-3-2 Business Class lie-flat seating. Overall, I really liked the smaller cabin. Both in terms of noise level and service.

Korean Air Business Class Small Cabin View

Prestige Class Seat

I settled into my seat, 8 J for the 13+ hour flight back to the states. I had two windows but no direct aisle access. The seats are the lie-flat kind that lie-flat at an angle. I’ve tried these style seats on Air France A380 lie-flat seats, Delta cradle seats, Singapore Air regional Business Class and my ranking would have to be as follows:

Korean Air Business Seat

The in-flight entertainment screen was large and had a good selection of movies. The storage near your feet isn’t as large as on Air France’s A380 lie-flat Business Class. That is one of the main reasons I gave the edge to Air France. In addition, the Korean Air pillow is rather small compared to other carriers. But I usually bring a backup neck pillow on long haul trips, so that wasn’t as big of a concern.

Korean Air Business Entertainment

The amenity kits were provided by Davi from Napa. I reviewed the contents in more detail during my previous trip on Korean Air’s Business Class. The big items I look for in an amenity kit are:

  • Eye mask
  • Lip balm
  • Socks / Slippers
  • Ear plugs
  • Hand lotion
  • Wet wipes for cleaning hands

The items above are “must-haves” and other amenity kit items are “nice-to-haves” in my opinion. This one had everything I was looking for.

Korean Air Business Amenity Kit

After about 5 minutes of getting settled, I noticed my pre-departure drink holder was looking lonely.

Korean Air Business Seat Center Console

Pre-Departure

After a few moments the flight attendant came by with the guava-mix pre-departure drinks. This juice is so refreshing I had to order one.

Korean Air Business Pre-Depature Drink

I also ordered a glass of water to help hydrate before the long flight. Water is my best friend on long flights. Not only does it hydrate, but it helps prevent a hangover if you decide to go all out like I did with Champagne Diaries and Singapore Slings on my Singapore Flight in Business Class.

Korean Air Business Pre-Departure water

Prestige Class Service

The service began about 45 minutes after take off. Place settings were handed out before the service began. I reclined my seat and clicked on a movie to watch during the service.

Korean Air Business Place Setting

The first item brought out for nibbling pleasure was a crab appetizer.

Korean Air Business Appetizer 2

The crab was very tasty, but I preferred the seared tuna with asparagus and a balsamic olive oil dressing which was offered on the outbound flight.

Korean Air Business Appetizer

The first course was a tuna with a rub on the outside.

Korean Air Business First Course 2

This dish was very moist and delicious, especially for airplane food.

Korean Air Business First Course

Next up was the tomato soup.

Korean Air Business Soup

The soup came with two croutons and was served warm. A few bumps and this would have been a disaster, but no turbulence on this flight.

Korean Air Business Soup 2

For the main course, I skipped the Bimimbap I ordered on the outbound in favor of a juicy steak with a side dipping sauce. The mashed potatoes and side of sauce were the best part of this dish for sure.

Korean Air Business Main Course

To finish off the first meal service I settled on a cup of chocolate ice cream. It hit the spot with a nice glass of red wine.

Korean Air Business Desert

Prestige Class Lie-Flat Seat

I took a quick look around the cabin after the meal service and I finished my movie and then planned to settle into my seat for a quick nap.

Korean Air Business Class Small Cabin

The cabin was very light, most people had their windows open. I closed both of my windows and then pushed the recline button on my seat to get as comfortable as you can in the lie-flat mode.

Korean Air Business Window View

I think the best comfort setting in these seats is to recline completely flat, and then click the un-recline button just for a second. You’ll end up in a slightly lie-flat mode / cradle mode which I found very comfortable for resting.

Korean Air Business Seat In Lie Flat Position

Snack Service

Since I didn’t sleep well in Singapore Air’s regional Business Class, I took a half of an Advil PM to catch up on some rest. So when the second meal service came around, I was still a bit groggy. Nevertheless, I ordered the chicken and rice dish and some refreshments.

Korean Air Business Lunch

The dish was good, but not as great as the first meal service. I’d say it was good enough and the sauce was very tasty. Overall, I was very pleased with the Korean Air food service.

Korean Air Business Lunch 2

Bottom Line

This was my second flight in Korean Air’s Business Class (Prestige) and my first in the smaller cabin. I’d select the smaller cabin every time if the seats are available.

Each time I’ve flown Korean they have exceeded my expectations and this was no different. I’ll definitely fly Korean Air again in the future. But Delta’s new MQDs policy where you don’t earn MQDs on partner airlines will certainly influence my decision if I’m close to meeting the status earning MQD requirement.

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About the author: The Weekly Flyer is writes about travel from a business traveler perspective. He travels the world every week accumulating points and miles along the way. Feel free to reach me at theweeklyflyer@gmail.com

{ 3 comments… add one }

  • JoC January 26, 2013, 11:02 am

    crab appetizer — looks like imitation crab , or i may be wrong.

  • The Weekly Flyer January 26, 2013, 11:05 am

    Hi JoC – Menu said crab, looked like crab, tasted like crab…

  • JoC January 26, 2013, 3:10 pm

    Come to think of it, it must be a chunk from the alaskan king crab….sorry about that ….i keep thinking about the dungeonous crab ….and therefore the comment.

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