Japan Airways A350 First Class: Unbelievably Good!!!

Hiya from New York, as I’m wrapping up my present assessment journey. I simply had the prospect to fly Japan Airways’ Airbus A350-1000 first-class from Tokyo to New York. This can be a model new plane for the airline, that includes an all-new passenger expertise.

I had excessive hopes for this product, besides, my expectations had been exceeded by a protracted shot. I’ve been doing this for a very long time, and it’s uncommon {that a} product actually makes me go “WOW!” However that’s precisely what Japan Airways did. That is an expertise that photos don’t do justice. Heck, I’m actually excited to be heading house and seeing my household, however I didn’t need this flight to finish.

I’ve been fortunate sufficient to fly nearly all the world’s finest first-class airways, however Japan Airways is absolutely elevating the bar. The one different first-class laborious product that’s comparable is Emirates’ “Recreation Changer” 777 first-class, however I feel Emirates could have been outdone.

My largest criticism in regards to the flight? Nobody else was consuming the 2013 Salon champagne, so I felt an immense obligation to shine off the $1,200 bottle, to keep away from it being wasted, although I’m not likely a drinker these days. And I succeeded.

Beneath I needed to share some preliminary ideas on the expertise, after which quickly I’ll have a full journey report.

Japan Airways’ A350 first-class seats are unreal

Japan Airways’ A350-1000 first-class cabin has a complete of six seats, unfold throughout two rows, in a 1-1-1 configuration.

Japan Airways A350 first-class cabin

We’ve gotten used to the idea of first-class suites with doorways, however Japan Airways has raised the bar. The suite may simply seat three individuals, because the seat is broad sufficient for 2 individuals (after which some), whereas there’s additionally an enormous ottoman on which you’ll sit. By way of useful private house, this will solely be outdone by Etihad’s The Residence.

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat
Japan Airways A350 first-class seat
Japan Airways A350 first-class seat

Now, admittedly one may conclude {that a} double seat is a waste of house, because it’s not like you’ll be able to ebook two (or three) individuals in a single suite. However that’s the place the considerate design shines. The seat again of the second seat lowers, to create a useful console on which you’ll place issues throughout the flight. There’s even an armrest, in order that the seat received’t be uncomfortably broad (I do know, discuss first world issues!).

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat desk

You may take a look at the leisure display and never assume it’s outstanding, however that’s as a result of the size of the suite is misplaced in photos. The leisure monitor is an enormous 43″ — for context, under is my 15″ MacBook Air subsequent to the display. You’re actually sitting in entrance of a giant display TV, and it’s wild — you would watch the Taylor Swift Tremendous Bowl on right here!

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat leisure display

Watching the A350 tail digicam on a 43″ display when you’re flying is pure avgeek euphoria. It stays me of enjoying Microsoft Flight Simulator in my childhood, solely ten occasions higher.

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat leisure display

The quantity of storage on the seat can also be not like something I’ve seen. Beneath the ottoman is a large compartment the place you’ll be able to retailer your baggage — it match my overstuffed carry-on and backpack, with room to spare.

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat baggage storage

Then there are three further storage compartments on the seat, so there can be no scarcity of house to position your private belongings.

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat storage

All of the seat’s capabilities may be managed through a pill and panel subsequent to the seat, starting from the leisure capabilities, to the lighting within the suite.

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat pill

In mattress mode, this seat couldn’t be extra snug. It’s so lengthy and broad, and on Japan Airways you get unbelievable bedding. That is comprised of two pillows, a cover, and your alternative of a agency or gentle mattress pad.

Japan Airways A350 first-class mattress

Additionally, whereas Japan Airways’ A350 first-class doesn’t have floor-to-ceiling doorways (as you’ll discover in Emirates’ new first-class), the partitions are 62″ excessive, so that they do supply an unimaginable quantity of privateness.

Japan Airways A350 first-class door

Lastly, I haven’t traditionally been an enormous fan of Japan Airways’ cabin finishes. In renderings, I assumed the cabin seemed form of ugly. Nonetheless, I’ve to say that the burgundy colour seems much more elegant in individual. So whereas this isn’t how I’d select to design a airplane, the cabin seems loads higher than I used to be anticipating.

Japan Airways’ A350 first-class tech is phenomenal

Japan Airways has unimaginable tech in its Airbus A350 first-class. The place will we even start?

Every seat has an unparalleled seven charging choices — two USB-A shops, two USB-C shops, two AC energy shops, and one wi-fi charging station.

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat charging
Japan Airways A350 first-class seat charging

Japan Airways additionally has an unequalled three choices for having fun with audio by the inflight leisure — you should use the offered Bang & Olufsen headphones, you should use your individual headphones through bluetooth audio, or you should use the audio system which can be constructed into the seat.

Japan Airways A350 first-class seat audio choices

That’s proper, Japan Airways has audio system constructed into the headrest, so you’ll be able to take pleasure in leisure with out even utilizing your headphones. I’ll share my ideas on that in a separate put up, since I’ve sufficient to share right here as is.

Japan Airways A350 first-class built-in audio system

Japan Airways’ A350-1000 is a pleasure to fly

At the moment the world’s two finest first-class laborious merchandise are Emirates’ 777 first-class and Japan Airways’ A350 first-class. So I feel it’s necessary to emphasise what a distinction the A350 could make to the passenger expertise.

The airplane is simply so quiet, it has a tail digicam (on a 43″ display no much less — SWOON!), and it’s pressurized in order that your pores and skin doesn’t really feel as dry. As a lot as I don’t often purchase into advertising and marketing hype, I wish to point out that I 100% consider that the 787 and A350 depart you feeling extra refreshed. On this journey, all my lengthy haul flights had been on the 787 and A350, and for the primary time in a very long time, my knuckles don’t really feel tremendous attempt, which in any other case appears to occur each time I take one among these wild journeys.

Japan Airways Airbus A350-1000

Japan Airways’ first-class gentle product is pleasant

What’s to not love about flying with a Japanese airline? For one, you recognize service goes to be constant and wonderful, as was the case on this flight. The crew on this flight couldn’t have been higher, and I used to be notably impressed on condition that it was your entire crew’s first flight on the plane (this was solely the airplane’s second-ever flight to New York). There can usually be a studying curve to new planes, however you wouldn’t have identified primarily based on the crew’s service degree.

Japan Airways’ gentle product is unimaginable. The airline serves Salon 2013 in first-class, retailing for $1,200 per bottle. Now, the airline solely masses one bottle of this, which is an odd method to take. Nonetheless, once you’re the one one consuming champagne…

Japan Airways first-class 2013 Salon champagne

However Japan Airways’ drink choice is spectacular past that, together with serving the most costly non-alcoholic drink that you simply’ll discover on any airline on the earth, within the type of its Queen of Blue deluxe tea.

Japan Airways first-class Queen of Blue deluxe tea

Japan Airways affords each western and Japanese meals. I nearly all the time go for the Japanese choices on a Japanese provider, however for the primary meal, the western one sounded extra interesting this time round (the Japanese menu was a bit too blowfish and herring primarily based for my liking).

Fortuitously Japanese airways serve a number of the finest and most elaborate western meals of any airline, and this flight was no exception.

The meal started with an amuse bouche of goat milk bavarois.

Japan Airways first-class meal service

Subsequent up was an appetizer of shrimp and kobashira with quinoa.

Japan Airways first-class meal service

Then there was yet one more appetizer, comprised of vegetable and scallop mille-feuille.

Japan Airways first-class meal service

Then there was the primary fundamental course, consisting of rockfish and winter greens a la nage, with a preparation you don’t usually see on a airplane. The fish actually melted in your mouth.

Japan Airways first-class meal service

Then the second fundamental course consisted of a beef sirloin with gratin dauphinois.

Japan Airways first-class meal service

Lastly, for dessert was pistachio cream with chocolate cream puffs.

Japan Airways first-class meal service

The standard was merely unmatched. No, this wasn’t like Emirates first-class, there the star of the present is limitless caviar, however right here every part was so prime quality and thoughtfully introduced.

For the pre-landing meal, I had the Japanese possibility, consisting of salmon with lotus root and bok choy, steamed rice, miso soup, and black pickles.

Japan Airways first-class meal service

Then I had the petit dessert tray.

Japan Airways first-class meal service

Completely divine…

The place there’s room for enchancment

As you’ll be able to see, I’ve been raving about Japan Airways’ A350-1000 product above, and for good cause. Nonetheless, no product is ideal, so I wish to be balanced, and share some areas for enchancment.

To begin, Japan Airways has acknowledged that it’s not happy with a number of the work Safran did with the cabin finishes, as there have been many points with the seats already, from scratches, to panels falling off. So whereas that has been broadly reported, I’ve to say that I didn’t discover any points by any means with the performance of my seat. Then once more, this was solely the plane’s third business flight ever (I used to be flying the second A350-1000 to be delivered to Japan Airways).

Right here’s what I did discover by way of potential areas for enchancment:

  • Japan Airways’ leisure system continues to be pretty restricted by way of the choice; nonetheless, between the tail digicam and the free Wi-Fi for first-class passengers, I used to be completely happy as might be
  • There was a problem with the map function, whereby it didn’t replace accurately. Beginning at in regards to the midway level of the flight, the map simply urged we had been 8hr30min from arrival, with no further updates
  • There’s a pill subsequent to the seat that you simply use to manage the leisure, although I didn’t discover the design to be terribly intuitive by way of which buttons to push and when with a view to make choices
  • That is admittedly a really particular element, however the bathroom doorways slam loudly, so one thing must be put in in order that they shut extra gently, and make much less noise
The map function wouldn’t transfer past right here!

These are all very minor factors, however I wish to be balanced, so there ya go…

Backside line

I had excessive expectations of Japan Airways’ new A350 first-class, however regardless of that, they had been exceeded. As I see it, that is indisputably one of many two finest first-class laborious merchandise on the market, together with Emirates’ 777 first-class (and I’ll do a extra direct comparability of the 2 in a unique put up).

Japan Airways has taken private house to the following degree with its new first-class, and the tech on the seats is spectacular. While you mix that with Japanese hospitality and superb meals and drinks, business aviation actually doesn’t get a lot better than this.

What’s your tackle Japan Airways’ new A350-1000 first-class?

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