This post is part of a series. To read more from this trip:
After a short layover in Jakarta’s Saphire – Plaza Premium Lounge, we were ready for the final two legs of our trip home. Having already flown Cathay Pacific’s A350 Business Class from SEA-HKG just a few weeks ago, we were excited to see how the experience would compare against the smaller A330. This was an overnight flight, so admittedly, we spent most of this flight sleeping before landing in Hong Kong.
Seat 12D & G
We booked this route using 70,000 American Airlines AAdvantage miles, which is one of the most flexible currencies to book oneworld travel to Asia with airlines like Cathay Pacific.
Cathay Pacific uses A330s primarily for regional flights, and while some feature a 2-2-2 Business Class cabin configuration, CX796 features a 1-2-1 reverse herringbone configuration with lie flat seats despite being a 5 hour regional flight. If you’re planning on flying this route, nabbing a seat on one of these planes makes a huge difference since it almost mirrors the long haul experience.
Like the larger A350 and 777-300ER, this A330 features a 1-2-1 reverse herringbone configuration, granting each seat direct aisle access. Similar to Cathay Pacific’s A350, the cabin is divided into two sections, with the larger cabin in front of the galley and a “mini cabin” behind it.
The 39 Business Class reverse herringbone seats onboard the A330 are slightly narrower than the 777-300ER and A350 (it’s a smaller aircraft, after all), but are otherwise much the same. I will say that this plane looked fairly well maintained and didn’t have any major signs of wear that I’ve seen on many other aging regional aircraft.
Because of how private reverse herringbone seats are, we often go back and forth on whether we prefer sitting in the center seats together versus taking two window seats immediately behind each other. For this shorter flight, my wife and I selected center seats 12 D and G in the second row of the larger cabin.
A plush Bamford pillow was waiting for me at my seat, and a light blanket was placed in the footwell.
The blanket of course doesn’t compare to the duvet used on the long haul routes, but is certainly sufficient for a night time nap.
Seats feature the older IFE system and A/V inputs, but fortunately do have a USB port and standard outlet.
Next to the IFE remote and console is a storage compartment where the Bose headphones are docked.
Cathay Pacific’s headphones aren’t anything amazing, but I find that they’re comfortable enough for extended use.
Tray tables slide out from beneath the center console and stow nicely with a locking mechanism on the bottom.
A small storage space sits under the center console, which is basically where my knees do their best work since I’m a left side sleeper.
Once up in the air, it wasn’t long before I passed out. As good as the supper menu looked, it wasn’t compelling enough to keep me awake since I was exhausted and didn’t feel like another meal. But I definitely would have taken the cod over the lamb shoulder.
I slept quite soundly for about 3 hours, and woke up shortly before landing to use the restroom. The crew kept the lavatories quite tidy.
I was really pleased with this overnight hop from Jakarta to Hong Kong. And really, one of the biggest reasons I chose this routing was because I wanted to have lie flat seats through our entire return trip from Bali to Los Angeles, and to experience all three of Cathay Pacific’s 1-2-1 Business Class configured cabins on the A330, A350 and 777-300ER.
While I would have loved a plush Bamford duvet and amenity kit, I really can’t complain; having lie flat reverse herringbone seats on a regional flight through Asia is more than sufficient. The timing is also a little bit odd (it’s hard to justify a meal at 1am on a 5 hour flight), but there are definitely worse ways to travel.
Our final leg home would be on Cathay Pacific’s 777-300ER, following a long layover in Hong Kong, which will complete the Cathay Pacific reverse herringbone trifecta.