Review: Korean Air 71 777-200 Business Class Seoul Incheon to Vancouver – Part 2

Given how many pictures I have in this report, I’ve broken the report for Korean Air Flight 71 up into two parts. This is part 2.


Introduction
SkyTeam Lounge Hong Kong
Hong Kong Airport Midfield Terminal
Korean Air 604 777-200 Business Class Hong Kong to Seoul Incheon
Korean Air 71 777-200 Business Class Seoul Incheon to Vancouver: Part 1
Korean Air 71 777-200 Business Class Seoul Incheon to Vancouver: Part 2
Our Whistler Apartment: Pinnacle Ridge
Whistler Blackcomb Ski Resort: My Thoughts
Westin Wall Center Vancouver Airport
Plaza Premium Lounge Vancouver
Korean Air 72 777-200 Business Class Vancouver to Seoul Incheon
Korean Air 607 747-400 Business Class Seoul Incheon to Hong Kong
Cathay Pacific 723 A330-300 Economy Class Hong Kong to Kuala Lumpur
The Boulevard by St. Giles Kuala Lumpur
Cathay Pacific 720 A330-300 Economy Class Kuala Lumpur to Hong Kong


Read: Part 1

Soon we were halfway into the flight, which was much shorter than I was anticipating it to be given how much fun we were having. We had basically all the space to move around, so I was good with that.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Airshow

I moved to 7F so I could spread out a bit while doing work, which proved to be excellent – the cabin temperature was like a sauna, despite the flight attendant putting the air conditioning at maximum, and the fact that I had prepared for subzero temperatures didn’t help much. The middle of the cabin was much cooler – I presume that’s because of how the air vents are situated.

I brushed my teeth using the tools in the amenity kit, and the flight attendant said “getting ready for bed?”. I said yes, we had a small conversation (I hadn’t really talked to her much this flight), then she wished that I sleep well. After I brushed she went inside the toilet and cleaned the sink again (I did that already, given what people do with sinks, but she made sure, which is reassuring). It’s worth noting that the water from the tap was somewhat cloudy for a duration of the flight, so I used bottled water for my brush.

For those who find brushing on a plane disgusting, I only do that on longhauls where I’m either with friends or in a premium cabin. I’m not comfortable doing that in economy with a queue forming behind me in a toilet used by ~300 people since the last time it was cleaned.

I wanted to move back to 7H to sleep, but there was literally zero privacy. The lights may have been dimmed, but there was still a bit of light as my sister had them all on. 7F wasn’t any better, as there is zero partition between the seat and the aisle. The padding wasn’t helping much either.

So I moved to 7E, which proved to be an excellent choice – given there’s no one beside me, I could “raise” the privacy partitions on both sides, making it really like a private cabin. I wouldn’t recommend the middle seat as such unless you get in the situation that I did, given that the temperature is also cooler. I take back what I said in 2015 about Korean Air’s seats being perfect, given what I’ve tried on this longhaul, but they do the job for sleeping if you’re in a window or a middle seat (specifically a middle if you end up on one of the aircraft bordering on their 20s, since the temperature really makes a difference).

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Seat 7E

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Seat 7E in Bed Position

I slept for an hour and a half or so, waking up around three hours out of Vancouver. The flight attendant asked if I slept well, which I didn’t, but said it was nothing that they did. They asked if I wanted anything to eat, and (stupidly) I went for the ramen. Even more stupidly, I said “yes” when she asked if I wanted all the spices in it or not. It was hot, which didn’t bode well with the temperature – but delicious anyhow, so delicious that my mother ordered some for herself despite her spiciness intolerance.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Snack – Ramen with Side Dishes

I managed to sleep for another hour or so, which was when breakfast was served. My sister was asleep so unfortunately declined her breakfast, which I knew not to do – after all, this was probably the only time Korean Air would ever be serving dduk.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Aft Cabin During Breakfast

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Aft Cabin During Breakfast

I took quite a few pictures given it was light ourside.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Aft Cabin During Breakfast

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Aft Cabin During Breakfast

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Aft Cabin During Breakfast

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Aft Cabin During Breakfast

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Aft Cabin During Breakfast

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Aft Cabin During Breakfast

The dduk was bland – at least until I realised I stupidly missed the salt by the side. The actual rice cake was of the right consistency, and the meat wasn’t half bad – I just wish the salt was in the dish in the first place, since it seems a bit weird to just have some hanging by the side, in a plastic creamer package-styled container no less. This came with orange juice, which was fine.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Breakfast – Dduk

The meal ended with some fruit, which was served cold as I like it.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Breakfast – Seasonal Fresh Fruit

It was light outside, already, and I had a good time in the aft cabin staring out the window at the clouds.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Inflight View

I then asked the flight attendant which exact type this plane was, so I could know if it was a 777-200 or 777-200ER. She said it was a “777-200S, the oldest type”, so I’m assuming it was a 777-200.

A few minutes later (I’m such a terrible passenger) I asked the purser which side would be better for landing, as I had the option of seat 8A, which still has a window that allows pictures (meanwhile, in 8B or 8H, not so much, as the window you naturally look out of when you crane your neck doesn’t exist). The purser said she’d ask the captain, and a couple of minutes later said that the airport was on the right. The right side it was then!

The left side did have good mountain views, but I stuck to the fact that I’m a #avgeek and not a #mountaingeek, and stuck to the right side.

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British Columbia Views upon Cruising

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British Columbia Views upon Cruising

After the American captain’s brief announcement and prior to landing, the flight attendant came. She didn’t bow but thanked me for being there and gave me a few postcards and a few pens, which I value much more than a bow. Given the light load and the amazing service, this was easily the best flight I’ve had in a long time.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class Postcards

The curtains also opened to first class, which was a nice change of scenery.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 First Class

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 First Class

The views got progressively better as we started our descent, with views of the snowy mountain peaks.

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

The other side definitely had better views, but we did end up with a better view of the airport.

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Views upon Descent Vancouver Airport

There was a sizeable amount of traffic at Vancouver Airport, ranging from Air Canada 787s to a China Eastern A330. Vancouver Airport was much smaller than I anticipated – it used to strike me as a “hub airport”, but it definitely didn’t seem like one, even when leaving.

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Traffic Vancouver Airport

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Traffic Vancouver Airport

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Traffic Vancouver Airport

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Traffic Vancouver Airport

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Traffic Vancouver Airport

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Traffic Vancouver Airport

We parked at gate D64, where I passed through first class and got a few snaps of the first class cabin.

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 First Class

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 First Class

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 First Class

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Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Vancouver Airport

It was my first time in Vancouver Airport (or anywhere in the Americas, for that matter), and it was just as aqua-centric as I imagined it. Vancouver Airport is supposedly the best airport in North America, so I’m guessing it was a nice “stepping stone” given some of the airports I’ve been to in Asia.

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Vancouver Airport Arrivals Hall

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Vancouver Airport Arrivals Hall

We were through immigration surprisingly quickly (and I didn’t die at customs, which is much more than I expected), and we were on our way to waiting for our friends on Cathay Pacific’s direct flight, then on the way to Whistler.

Bottom Line on Korean Air Boeing 777-200 Business Class

Korean Air’s 777 business class is rather subpar compared to some of the best products out there, and to be honest is a mediocre product. After flying in it for twelve hours, I can’t really say I like the seat anymore, but hopefully (as I would have found out!) the new seat is a welcome change.

The soft product on this flight met and exceeded the expectations I had from my positive experiences on shorthaul flying back in 2015 by a mile, so I’m really happy about that (Korean Air, if you’re reading this, please thank the crew for me, as I didn’t get their names). But in 2016 business class is all about the seat, so I’d go out of my way to avoid Korean Air’s 777-200 business class product in the future (unless Seoul’s my final destination, in which case it’s more than enough).

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