Have you ever gotten to fly “upstairs” on an airplane before?
Does “reverse coffin” sound like something you’d be into?
I have always wanted to ascend those magical stairs to the fancier cabin perched atop the squalor that is coach, but up until now I had never gotten the chance to do so. Thanks to some US Airways Dividend Miles that I had scored from the US Airways credit card signup bonus, plus a few more miles transferred over from my Starwood Preferred Guest account, I was making it a reality.
I had booked award tickets from Bangkok, Thailand to Sapporo, Japan with stopovers in Hong Kong and Tokyo. I used a sweet spot in the US Airways Award Chart that allowed me to fly round-trip business class between Sapporo and Hong Kong, with a stopover in Tokyo, for only 30,000 miles per ticket. As the segments between Bangkok and Hong Kong were relatively short, I booked them using Avios distance based award chart for 11,250 Avios one-way in premium economy and 7,500 Avios for the return in coach.
This trip that was a mix of business and pleasure that included a week of snowboarding in Niseko, Japan, powder capital of the universe, along with several days of hanging out in Tokyo and Artin’ around at Art Basel Hong Kong and Art Central. I was really psyched for the trip and the chance to try out the upper deck business class on board a Cathay Pacific 747.
Going up the stairs felt pretty pimp. To literally sit on top of the other cabin, it really makes you feel like some sort of tycoon or evil villain. The upstairs cabin is nice and the seats are in a rather strange configuration, known affectionately as the “reverse coffin” configuration. There aren’t very many of these vampire-inspired cabins left in operation and I was pumped to get to fly one before they are taken out of service entirely.
The seats are a little narrow feeling for business class, but the fact that the seat dividers are low means that you can see across the cabin, so it’s not claustrophobic. Additionally, the low dividers mean that you can pat your neighbor on the head, which is a sign of respect (just kidding, don’t try this).
I generally love Cathay Pacific premium cabins and this experience was no different. Really friendly and attentive service and the food was good.
In case you need to make a call while you are zipping along through the sky, Cathay allows you to call the ground for a mere $8.80 per minute, though incoming calls are not permitted. I, of course, called 1-800-mustache.
The flight left Hong Kong shortly after 9 am so the meal on offer was the breakfast course. I had the omelet with bacon and sausage and also some fresh fruit and a croissant. All tasty.
Of course I had just eaten a bunch of food in the lounge so I wasn’t all that hungry, but seeing as there was plenty of additional travel ahead, I ate as much as I could in case the food options were lacking later. The seat was comfortable, the despondent cries from the coach cabin did not disturb my brief nap and the flight landed in Sapporo on time and without incident.
From there it was off to the mountain to shred the sacred powder staches (pun intended) of Niseko. Yet another awesome experience and trip that wouldn’t have been possible without the miles and points game. Tell me babies, where do you want your miles and points to take you?
Hit me up with all your questions and comments!
If you’ve already got all the miles and just need some help finding space and booking the award, I have an award booking service that will get you all squared away. Find out more about it here.