FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Korean Air | Prestige Class

Sep 1, 2011
2011 / September 2011

Arrival/Check-in: I arrived at the airport two hours prior to departure to find a swift-moving line at the check-in counter. With no luggage to check, I was on my way through security, boarding pass in hand, within minutes. I was initially dismayed to join the line of passengers snaking its way through the checkpoint with no designated queue for first- and business-class passengers; but the process moved along quickly, and I emerged into Incheon’s airside shopping mecca with plenty of time to spare prior to boarding. (30/30)

Pre-flight: As a passenger on Korean Air’s inaugural Airbus A380 flight connecting Seoul to New York, I was invited to tour the first-class lounge, a cozy enclave with comfortable seating arranged in small conversation groups offering a panoramic view of the tarmac. The carrier recently expanded its adjacent business-class lounge to accommodate the increased number of business-class passengers arriving and departing via the airline’s growing fleet of A380s. (With two in service now, Korean Air expects delivery of three more by the end of the year and an additional five by 2014.) Though larger and a bit more crowded, the business-class lounge was on par with the first-class lounge with plenty of comfortable seating and a wall of windows overlooking the tarmac. Boarding was swift, with designated jetways for the upper and lower cabins. I stowed my gear and settled back to enjoy a pre-flight glass of Laurent-Perrier Champagne. (30/30)

In-flight: Configured in a three-class layout with 407 seats in total, Korean Air’s double-decker A380 features 94 fully flat seats in the upper deck Prestige (business) Class. The top deck is subdivided into three sections — four rows, eight rows and four rows.

Signature amenities include a duty-free showcase and an onboard bar and lounge area. I was assigned seat 22B, an aisle seat in the aft cabin near the onboard lounge. As soon as the pilot turned off the seatbelt sign, flight attendants took drink orders and circulated the in-flight menu. A starter of king crabmeat with mango purée was followed by a seared tuna slice with tomato salsa and tomato basil cream soup. I had opted for Korean bibimbap on my flight to Seoul, so I decided to try the sautéed beef tenderloin with rosemary sauce, crushed red-skinned potato and roasted vegetables. It’s interesting to note that Korean Air cultivates most of the produce and grain that go into its in-flight meals. I passed on the ice cream and chocolate cake in favor of a cheese plate. I’m not a red wine aficionado, so I chose a white burgundy (Pouilly Vinzelles Vieilles Vignes, 2009) to accompany my repast.

During the flight, I joined colleagues at the bar where I felt a definite ’70s jet-set vibe, chatting and sipping cocktails at 35,000 feet. Word of advice: If you’re planning on sleeping and happen to be a light sleeper, you may want to request a seat more removed from the onboard bar and lounge. Happily, I always travel with ear plugs, so I slept soundly for several hours, watched a movie and explored the AVOD offerings. While I had ordered stir-fried seafood with black bean sauce for the second meal service, by that point in the flight I was more interested in “breakfasty” items, so I opted for fresh fruit and rolls instead. (38/40)

The Experience: With so many diversions — a duty-free showcase, an onboard bar and lounge, comprehensive AVOD programming, comfortable lie-flat beds — my 13-plus-hour flight was more relaxing than grueling. I arrived in New York feeling rested and ready to jump into my day.

Total Score: 98/100

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Daily
Nov 15, 2019

Mandarin Oriental Plans New Hotel in Switzerland

Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group announced plans to take over an existing hotel in Switzerland. The property is undergoing extensive renovations in preparation to open at the end of next year as Mandarin Oriental Palace, Luzern. The property was previously Hotel Palace Luzern, on the shores of Lake Lucerne and in the heart of the city; it originally opened in 1906.

A Lighter Footprint

United Airlines’ environmentally friendly efforts lessen the impact on local U.S. communities.

Feature
Nov 14, 2019

MOXY East Village NYC Opens for Business

A new celebration of American counterculture recently opened in New York City’s East Village by way of MOXY East Village.

Feature
Nov 14, 2019

Germany Increasing Air Departure Taxes

As part of Germany’s climate package, a plan to reduce emissions, the country will raise departure taxes at German airports. Taxes will go up as much as 60 percent, and are expected to raise up to €740 million. The funds will then be used to lower VAT on rail fares from 19 percent to 7 percent.

News
Nov 14, 2019

Norwegian Cruise Line Welcomes Latest Ship

Norwegian Cruise Line took delivery of its newest ship, Norwegian Encore, ahead of its naming ceremony Nov. 21. The 1,100-foot-long ship boasts a guest capacity of nearly 4,000. Since Norwegian Cruise Line took delivery of the shi, Oct. 30, Norwegian Encore sailed from Germany to England before making its way to New York City, then Miami, where the christening ceremony takes place next week.

Feature
Nov 14, 2019

Glasgow Airport Electrifies Bus Fleet

A first for a United Kingdom airport, Glasgow Airport introduced a fleet of electric buses for connections to its terminal and long-stay parking lot.

eFlyer News
Nov 14, 2019

Japan Airlines Announces Route Expansion

Getting to and from Asia gets a little simpler thanks to a new network expansion from Japan Airlines.

eFlyer Lead
Nov 14, 2019

Swiss-Belhotel International Details Thailand Debut

Swiss-Belhotel International boasts an impressive portfolio throughout 22 countries, including 10 ASEAN member countries. This growth is continuing with the group’s new plans to debut four properties in Thailand.

Feature
Nov 13, 2019

JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa Finalizes Renovation

One of Palm Desert, California’s, signature hotel properties recently finalized its biggest-ever redesign. The JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and Spa is home to 884 guestrooms and nearly 250,000 square feet of event space. Every facet of the property has been redesigned ahead of the property’s grand re-opening in January.