"Ma'am are you familiar with this aircraft, have you traveled in this before?" asked the Emirates crew member as he started an orientation session explaining the features of the plane and my seat's functionalities. I was, of course, beady eyed and an imaginary drool was hanging from my mouth because unlike the Boeing 777 that I have flown with Qatar Airways, this was pretty high tech! And beautiful!
Emirates introduced the king of its fleet - the Airbus A380 - a 525 passenger aircraft (largest in the world!) on our Washington DC to Karachi route last year (2016). There were 4 jet engines to this beast of an aircraft, and TWO passenger decks. That meant there was the Main Deck with the pilot's cockpit and the Economy Class. And then we were at the top where there's the First Class, Business Class, and the Bar lounge. I realized there were floors to the plane when one of the crew members came and gave me an orientation of the aircraft and the features of my seat.
As Emirates described:
"Once on board the A380, passengers in premium class seating can relax in Emirates’ flat-bed seats and enjoy Emirates’ onboard lounge. First Class passengers can unwind in their very own Private Suite and prepare for their arrival in the Emirates A380 Shower Spa."
So, I was traveling in Business Class and enjoyed the sleeper seat and the on-board lounge. Emirates works super hard on making their planes beautiful inside. They gave the cabin a marbled, premium look. The privacy is amazing because the seats are compartmentalized and high walls surround them. So, when you get up you see a whole Business Class city and only people's heads.
Compared to Qatar Airways, the seat width is definitely smaller. They've given the extra space that could have been the seat to the side table and the mini beverage holder bin (left of the seat). That compartmentalizing wall (right side of the seat) retracts downwards, so if the neighbor is your buddy (sister in my case) you can always enjoy the flight together without a wall in your face.
That fancy shmancy grey pleated ladies kit greeted me on the 14 hour flight. I am a big fan of airline kits. I am still rejoicing Armani's Si that Qatar Airways gave me last year. Emirates treated me with a ......... This calls for a What's In My A380 Emirates Kit entry, what say you?
The bar lounge on board was the highlight. I am not a drinker, or a conversation-starter with a bartender, but it was a treat to taste the snacks and bite sized desserts each time I visited the toilet! Yes, this bar was just outside the lavatories. And there wasn't one bathroom goer that wasn't treating himself or herself to the goodies on display throughout the flight. Charming idea, no? I myself sampled some Baklawa while I waited for the toilet to get free.
Sara and I did a little photo session while we were up there. Trust me! The crew is all about photo sessions! The air hostess nudged the bartender to move so we could get pictures taken while posing behind the bar! That's the lounge seat Sara and I sat and posed in besides the bar counter. Folks sit here all flight long DRINKING and getting tipsy!
On my return flight to DC I even chit chatted with a Malaysian lady (a Muslim, Hijabi) who was in line behind me. Her trip was sponsored by her company (some utility firm) in Malaysia and she was headed for business research to Georgia. She was on work visit visa and was worried about her fate upon landing in the US. We wished each other good luck. So, you can say I did start a conversation at a bar *LAUGHS*
Food was delicious! Over the course of two A380 flights DC-DUBAI-DUBAI-DC we enjoyed traditional Arabic Mezzeh, soups, hearty breakfasts, and scrumptious Indian meals. No rush with the details, I intend to write about all this awesomeness in this month's Food Journals.
ICE is their super awesome entertainment system. It has thousands of movies - NEW Bollywood and Hollwood and I immediately put my headphones on and started with Blake Lively's Shallows, followed by Tiger Shroff's Baaghi, and Suicide Squad! (Harley Quinn is love!) I started Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children and finished it after a month on my return flight. The BFG cartoon/animation/movie bored me and I didn't finish. On my return flight to DC I treated myself to Lights Out (horror) (Sara and I debated over watching it because we were going to be in a dark flight cabin overnight!), The Legend of Tarzan was my next watch (awesome!), and I concluded with Alice Through The Looking Glass which was a winner! Let's do a movies review entry some time later.