On the Ground: I arrived at Incheon International Airport and easily found the Emirates check-in. Early for my flight, I was second in the business-class line. I was checked in and on my way to the Korean Airlines lounge within minutes.
Pre-Flight: At the late hour of 10 p.m., the bright lounge was stocked with a variety of food — pizza, fried rice and pasta for those seeking dinner, plus lighter fare such as salad and sandwiches. Tasty macaroons were a nice touch for my sweet tooth.
There were plenty of comfortable chairs all around; free WiFi (no password required) made it easy to get a few last-minute emails out before the flight. A business desk complete with printer was in the center of the lounge, easily accessible to all.
In-Flight: I had been anticipating my first Airbus A380 flight for some time, and I was one of the first business-class passengers to board. Even with my knowledge of the aircraft, I was still astounded by the size of the plane and the number of friendly Emirates flight attendants waiting to greet and assist travelers.
The cabin configuration features a single seat on the window and two in the center aisle. At first the seats appear rather small and boxy, but as I settled, I realized how thoughtfully equipped they are, including a personal selection of beverages, counter space for my book and electronics, and a spot by my seat for magazines (where I put my laptop). I was treated to a glass of Moët & Chandon Champagne before takeoff and a beautiful amenity kit full of Bvlgari products.
Once in the air, I selected a traditional local Arabic mezze plate to start, seasonal salad and chicken tandoori for dinner, accompanied by a glass of Craggy Range Sauvignon Blanc. All were excellent, and I passed on dessert, as our fight departed at midnight and I was ready for some sleep.
The lie-flat seat was very comfortable, and aided by my Emirates eye mask, I got some sleep while others gathered in the lounge at the back of the cabin.
Just a 10-hour flight from Seoul to Dubai, the time went fast, and soon it was time for breakfast. I selected a delicatessen assortment of cold meats and cheeses and herbal tea. I only had a little time to explore the ICE entertainment system but was impressed with the assortment of movies, music and full seasons of my favorite shows.
The Experience: Never having flown Emirates before, I had high expectations, and I must say all were met, with great attention to detail — from the seat design to the amenity kit to the beautiful uniforms and quality service. Additionally, the A380 aircraft did not disappoint. I could truly feel the air was fresher and less dry than any other flight I have been on. No frequent traveler should miss the Emirates A380 experience.
- Less than 10 minutes for check-in
- Friendly and helpful agents
- Priority tagged bags
- Airport lounge
- Complimentary in-lounge food
- Priority boarding
- Helpful and courteous flight attendants
- Pre-flight beverage service
- Pre-flight newspapers and magazines
- Extensive on-demand menu
- Self-serve in-flight pantry
- Amenity kits
- Lie-flat seat/bed
- Mattress and comforter
- In-flight menu with three entrée choices
- Top-shelf wines and liquors
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