Cathay Pacific ‘First’ Impressions

Our site may contain affiliate links. Read Advertiser Disclosure policy here.

I just completed my first two flights in Cathay Pacific First Class, one on a 777 and the other on the 747.  Cathay First hasn’t really changed in the last several years and has been well documented by several other bloggers so I won’t rehash those aspects.  I did want to share my impressions that differed or weren’t highlighted from what I read elsewhere.

Cathay First is not a good First Class product for couples

While the soft and hard product are top notch, the individual privacy of the massive suites eliminate a lot of the excitement of couple travel. My favorite aspect of First Class couple travel is looking your partner in the eye confusingly when they serve you both some fancy thing you don’t know how to eat or leaning over and asking “Can you believe how amazing this is?” Unfortunately the closest you can possibly get to your partner is row 1 in the 747 which still means you can’t see or have a comfortable conversation with your partner while seated. You can dine with your partner but that is such a small portion of a long-haul flight that I don’t think it makes up for the other 10+ hours of solitude.



The best seat is on the left aisle of the 777 

One of the beauties of First Class on the 777 is that there are only 6 seats which greatly improves your chances at a quiet cabin.  Furthermore, the left side of the 777 has only two seats on the aisle as the suites in the middle are so tall they create a wall so people can’t walk between aisles without going through the galley.  On my flight I was in 1A and had no one behind me in 2A so I barely knew anyone else was even in the cabin. In 15 hours I made eye contact with one of the three seated on the opposite side and never heard a peep from any of them.  In effect, I felt like I was in an empty First Class cabin.



On takeoff you will hear (and feel) how old the product is

It is pretty clear the First Class product is quite old which isn’t much of a detriment given how spacious the seat is.  When then engines roar up on takeoff, you will definitely hear and possibly feel how old this product is.  On takeoff from LAX on the 777, everything rattled like it was about to fall apart and my latched TV dislodged and flew at me.   That was fun.


On takeoff from HKG on the 747, the same ‘Is the airplane falling apart?’ sounds were dominating along with my storage cabinet AND the guy’s next to me dislodging and opening into the aisle.

The bottom line

As documented by others, Cathay Pacific First Class is truly an amazing experience.  I would add to the conversation that this is not a great First Class product for couples and the left aisle on the 777 is your best seat to target if the route makes sense for you.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed.

About alex

Alex loves to travel and does so a lot. Logging 100,000 flight miles each year over the past 4 years, Alex uses points and miles to power his passion. Alex is continuously striving to experience the far reaches of the globe. In his day job, Alex is a Management Consultant frequently on the road advising Technology organizations. I love thinking about, reading about, and talking about all things travel. Feel free to reach me at

Sign up for Email || Twitter || Facebook |Tips & Tricks
Hotel Offers || Airline Offers || Bank Offers || Cash Back Offers


  1. That’s funny, I was on the 777 SFO-HKG in 1A a couple of weeks ago and the tv shot out at me during takeoff as well. Tried to jam it back with my feet with limited success. Wonder if we had the same plane?

  2. Wouldn’t that be the two seats on left aisle on the 777, rather than the right? I’ve always considered L&R with respect to how the seats faced forward.

  3. I think you have your right and left mixed up. Also I would disagree with your assessment about couple flying unless you need to hold each others hand all the way to HKG!

  4. You know they have a table extender and your partner can sit on the ottoman, right? The ottoman has a seatbelt for a reason.

  5. On one hand you want to travel as a couple, on the other, the left row of the 777 is better as it is isolated?
    honestly, the dining together is the best experience in all CX products as you can sit across and have a conversation
    If you want to sit together, you often can (unless you are a POS) as the seats are WIDE
    when you are ready to sleep you can enjoy the privacy of F

    I actually have found it better than old LH F, EY F suite and even SQ F but not as good as LH F on the old 747, which has a full bed to go with the seat.

    I think as a couple the right and center are better as you get privacy and can get together easily when you feel like it

  6. @ffi – Those are two independent thoughts. For single travel Cathay is hard to beat. The left side offers the most privacy. For couple travel I would prefer other airlines that have two shared First Class seats in the center. The workarounds you suggest are perfectly fine but not ideal in my opinion. As a couple on Cathay 777, seats on the right aisle as you suggest would be your best bet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *