Ancestral Visit to Fujian: Cathay Pacific A330 from SIN to HKG

CX734 Singapore SIN – Hong Kong HKG
STD-STA: 1625-2010
Actual: 1646-2015
Airbus A330-300 B-LAN
Seat 63A

Being a frequent flyer with Cathay Pacific, I chose the airline to fly to Xiamen, from where we will base our visit to my family’s ancestral village in Quanzhou, China. Since we will be transiting via Singapore as well, we chose a flight from Singapore which is also cheaper due to the higher frequencies of flight between Singapore and Hong Kong. Cathay Pacific is one of the airlines still using the old Terminal 1, but the terminal has been renovated and it was a comfortable day to be travelling via Changi Airport since there was no queue at the check-in counters. Perhaps we were also early from our arriving flight onboard Garuda Indonesia from Jakarta.

Cathay's Airbus A330 at Singapore
Cathay’s Airbus A330 at Singapore

Even with a slow walk and the need to switch from Terminal 3 to Terminal 1, we still had time to spare. A little bit of shopping later, and we headed to the Skyview Lounge to wait for our flight. When boarding was called, I was surprised to see an Airbus A330 at the gate. Usually Cathay Pacific sends in the older 777s for regional intra-Asia flights, and with this A330, it even came with the new cabins in all 3 classes (Business, Premium Economy and Economy). However the full flight meant we still had Economy Class seats. My parents had a window and aisle seat in the front section, while I obtained a window seat in the back section of the Economy Class. The Economy Class onboard the A330 is configured in a 2-4-2 array while Premium Economy is a 2-3-2 setup. The plane is also fitted with the new ‘Cirrus’ business class seats.

New Economy Class Seats on Cathay Pacific
New Economy Class Seats on Cathay Pacific

Seated beside me was an Singaporean businessman of Indian descent. Upon being seated, Cathay’s Airbus A330 is a comfortable plane especially with the new seats which has comfortable padding, storage on the seatback for my travel documents, and a very clear personal touchscreen entertainment system. This would be comfortable enough for a 4 hour flight!

Pier at Changi Village
Take-off with a view of Changi Village

Upon take-off, the stewardess distributed peanuts to passengers before the proper meal service one hour later. I do not really remember the meal choices, just that I had this fish dish with rice which was pretty good as it had a sweet and slightly spicy sauce. In addition to the main dish, there was a fruit platter, a plain bun and a Haagen Dazs ice cream cup. No one’s complaining about having 2 desserts instead of an appetizer, so it was an Economy Class meal I truly enjoyed.

Fish in Chilli Crab Sauce with Rice
Fish in chilli crab sauce with rice

Coupled with a nice dinner, there was a beautiful sunset outside the window as we crossed the South China Sea. And just one more hour to go before the aircraft is due to land. The rest of the time is spent on the inflight entertainment system while the stewardess goes around asking passengers if they are interested in any duty free items.

Sunset in South China Sea
Sunset over South China Sea
Approaching Hong Kong International Airport
Approaching Hong Kong International Airport

Descent into Hong Kong was very smooth and even after the delay in our departure to some traffic along the taxiway, we landed just five minutes late. This still provided us with adequate time to head down to The Wing Business Class Lounge for some Dan Dan Noodles and BBQ pork bun before boarding our next flight to Xiamen.

Bulkhead Economy Class Seats
Bulkhead economy class seats

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