I had booked Cathay Pacific (CX) business class for the trip to Phuket, Thailand.   I flew from Charlotte, NC to EWR in first class on American AIrlines (AA) to connect to the flight to HKG.

I spent the time at EWR in the British Airways Galleries lounge that is also used by Cathay Pacific and other OneWorld carriers.  After a couple of hours in the British Airways Galleries lounge it was time to board the flight to Hong Kong.


The departure gate was a short walk from the lounge through a small dimly lit duty-free sales area. img_3380

The flight was posted as departing from Gate 54.  Business class was boarding separately at Gate 53.

Business class boarding gate for CX 899

I was looking forward to this flight because it was my first experience with Cathay Pacific trans Pacific business class.  I’ve flown Cathay in first class across the Pacific and enjoyed the trip immensely.

Business Class Cabin

CX 899 was a three-class 777-300ER.  There are 40 business class seats in two cabins, 32 premium economy seats, and 268 economy class seats.  Business class is arranged 1-2-1.  Premium economy seating is 2-4-2 and economy is 3-3-3.

Forward business class cabin on CX 899
Rear business class cabin 


Premium EconomyWhen I got to my seat, 12K, a window seat starboard side in the second row of the forward business class cabin, I could see that the seat on CX 777-300s is virtually identical to the seat AA uses on the same plane.

Seat 12K CX 899 777-300ER

There is a storage compartment for the headphones under the side console.  The ottoman provides plenty of space for resting feet.

Seat 12K CX 899

These seats are roomy and comfortable.  The seat pitch (the distance between a point on a seat and the same point on the seat in front) for these CX business class seats is 82 inches. The width is 21 inches.

Seat controls, video remote, a/c power, video inputs and personal lighting are all easily accessible at eye level.img_3394

Storage is available in the headphone compartment, on the triangular side console and in an open area below the console.

Side console and headphone compartment
Open storage area under the console

The seat includes a compartment for shoes with a sliding door on the floor below the armrest.img_3395


CX provides a pillow and warm comforter, pajamas, amenity kit, noise cancelling headphones, and slippers.  Unlike some trans pacific American Airlines flights on 777-300s, CX did not have a mattress for the seat.  But the American mattresses are so thin, it is not like they add much as far as comfort.

Noise-cancelling headphones in compartment with a flip-down vanity mirror
Amenity kit and contents, below


Departure from EWR

As everyone was settling in the lead flight attendant came by to introduce herself and check on the well being of each business class passenger.  The other flight attendants offered beverages including champagne.img_3397

The EWR departure was on runway 22R (Two Two Right).  Once we were in the air, there was a good view of New York City.

Lower Manhattan, Hudson River and the World Trade Center (top)
Mid-town Manhattan and Empire State Building
New York City and the Hudson and East Rivers and Atlantic Ocean

I was surprised to see that we soon turned to the northeast.  Flights to Asia from the US, even those departing from the east coast, usually fly west. img_3469

In-Flight Service

Fifty minutes after takeoff the FAs offered beverages followed by supper.

Beverage menus:img_3414img_3417img_3418img_3412

Dinner menu:

Supper menu

I had the chicken dish for supper.  It was good but not outstanding.  Perhaps because the flight was departing at 01:00, the meal was served all at once to provide more time for sleep.

Supper/dinner was served all at once

Mid-Flight Refreshmment

For a mid-flight snack I had the Cathay cheeseburger.  It was a very good. img_3479

The pre arrival meal.img_3489img_3490

All of the food tasted great.  It was prepared and served correctly.   The service was attentive and pleasant.  Even with 40 seats in business class the FAs provided a level of service nearly equal to the service I experienced in Cathay Pacific first class. 


The bathrooms are also similar to those on an American Airlines 777-300.img_3478

Jurlique cleanser, body lotion and hand lotion


CX provides Jurlique cleanser and body and hand lotion.  The artificial flower is a nice touch.

In-Flight Entertainment

The AV system has good video, audio and flight following options.  The system is huge and is worth exploring because I always seem to discover new features.

On this flight I looked at the shopping menu, something I usually have no interest in, and found that there was a site for purchasing a Hong Kong Airport Express ticket for the trip from HKG into the city.  I always like to take this convenient and inexpensive way to get to and from the airport.

Trip Report – Airport Express Hong Kong International Airport

While it is easy to purchase this ticket after landing, buying onboard is even better.img_3486

The Cathay audio-visual system also displays info on the arrival at HKG.img_3494

My connecting flight to Phuket, Thailand would be departing from gate 508.


Another feature of the AV system is the external camera.  US airlines refuse to install this option on their planes (legal issues perhaps).  I love watching takeoff and landing with these cameras.  Piping the video feed through the audio-visual system provides all passengers with excellent views of takeoff, landing even if they don’t have a window seat.

Parking at Gate 4 at HKG

Final Thoughts And Comparison To My Experiences With American Airlines 777-300s

Surprisingly American comes out well in this comparison.  The seats are identical.  American provides a mattress for sleeping while CX does not.  The taste and quality of food was about the same, although American’s service was more elaborate than on this late-night flight.  For me the alcoholic selection on Cathay is better by virtue of having Johnnie Walker Gold versus the 12 year Glenlivet on AA.  Others can make their own judgments on the wine and other alcoholic beverages..  I certainly would have appreciated the Krug champagne served in first class on CX.  Service on AA can be quite good, but the service on CX is uniformly good and seems to be more genuinely pleasant and considerate.

Other posts about the trip to Phuket Thailand:

British Airways Galleries Lounge Newark, NJ (EWR) – Review in 14 Pictures

Japan Airlines Business Class 787-8 Bangkok, Thailand (BKK) to Tokyo, Japan (NRT)

Dragonair A321 Business Class – Hong Kong, SAR China (HKG) to Phuket, Thailand (HKT)

Bangkok Airways A320 Economy Class (My ‘Lie Flat’ Economy Seat) – Phuket, Thailand (HKT) to Bangkok (BKK)

Japan Airlines 787-9 Sky Suite, Tokyo, Japan (NRT) to Boston, MA (BOS)

Japan Airlines First Class Lounge Tokyo, Japan (NRT) Main Building