KE895 Seoul Incheon ICN – Shanghai Pudong PVG
Boeing 777-200ER HL7715
Gate 35 Seat 8A
Once again was one of the last to board the plane as the gate was really far from the lounge. On boarding I passed by the first class which was empty. Business class also has a light load with only 5 passengers in the first mini cabin. A same plane configuration as my inbound flight meant it was a familiar experience to the seat.
As I got settled into the seat, I was offered beverages to drink and I had another guava juice. Like my other flight, the pre-departure beverage came with the same packet of honey roasted almonds that came from the US.
I was welcomed into the cabin by the male steward and he mentioned some turbulence was expected for the flight as he passes through the Business class cabin.
There was a bit of a delay before takeoff as the runway was busy and the captain came online to apologize for it. I took this time to read the menu for the flight, as the stewardess came around to take meal orders. The meal menu was printed in 3 different languages (Korean, Chinese and English) and the meal for the return flight to Seoul for tomorrow morning was detailed as well.
The menu for the flight was:
While there is a wine list, it did not mention the wine types and there is no champagne for this regional flight.
There was a leaflet with instructions on how to eat bibimbap, something I see onboard both Asiana and Korean Air as they offer them to passengers.
I did not like the way that Korean Air does not provide the salad for passengers who chose the Korean option, which made choose the western option which was steak once again. I have also had bibimbap before and was not keen on having it again. After the meal orders was taken, we took off for the skies, though not much view of the airport and Incheon was visible due to the smog in the afternoon.
After a fast take-off and gain in altitude, the crew distributed hot towels. There was a pair of slippers in the same re-usable shoe bag on the seatback pocket. Inside there is a pair of headphones. However for this regional flight, a pair of flimsy headphones unlike those found in Economy class was provided. I was expecting a better pair of headphones as I did not bring mine along with me for this trip.
An evening flight meant I was able to catch some nice sunset views from the skies while waiting for the meal service to start.
The first course was provided to me on a tray, and bread was offered with the appetizers. A bowl of fruits was included on the tray which saves the crew from offering it again at the end. It was acceptable considering it was a short sector and thus makes it a challenge for a longer meal service. Sadly though the pork slices was not as flavourful as I liked it to be so the salad was quite plain.
Fortunately, the steak was nice and I finished that since it was cooked to my liking. The red wine sauce that came with it was enjoyable too! Maybe I was fortunate to get 2 steaks done to my taste!
I found the seasonal fruit selection to be great too as it featured cherries. For once, it was truly seasonal since cherries are in season during the mid of the year in summer. Coffee or tea was offered to passengers and I had the former to last me for the night.
Service during the flight was really minimal since the seatbelt sign was switched on for most of the flight due to the turbulence as mentioned. However the turbulence does not seem to delay our journey and I just had time to check out one TV series while having my meal before I decide to take a shuteye.
Before landing the stewardess came around the cabin to apologize for the lack of aerobridge on arrival in Shanghai. Apparently we will be in a remote stand for the arrival.
For the slightly turbulent flight, we did land safely into Shanghai Pudong well in advance of our scheduled time of arrival. This was not bad at all, but the taxi to our remote stand took a while as we parked beside a KLM jumbo jet. It seems numerous international flights are parked during this in remote stands. I believe this is to prevent the gates from being taken up this early at night.
Only the front door was provided with a stairway and that allowed me to take some photos of the First Class cabin on the way out of the plane. Those suites are indeed nice in a 1-2-1 layout and was a step-up to its Business class cabin.
However there was no separate bus for Business class passengers after disembarking from the plane and that negated the early de-plane for Business class passengers as we have to wait for a while for the bus to be packed full before it brought us to the terminal.
This short regional flight was incident-free but the long walk to the gates in Seoul and the remote stand arrival at Shanghai made this flight somewhat unpleasant. The waiting in the bus and eventual drop off into the terminal results in the lack of any premium feel. While the immigration queue was short, there was a bit of a wait for my luggage to come off the belt.