A380 Extravaganza: Cathay Pacific Business Class Colombo to Singapore

Filed Under: Cathay Pacific, Travel

Cathay Pacific 710
Colombo (CMB) – Singapore (SIN)

Saturday, January 19
Depart: 12:40AM
Arrive: 7:00AM
Duration: 3hr50min
Aircraft: Boeing 777-300
Seat: 15C (Business Class)

Upon boarding we were once again welcomed by a cheery crew, interestingly enough a different one than we had on the outbound. I kind of figured the crew was doing a direct turn as well, though that wasn’t the case.

We had the same seats as on the outbound, and the cabin was about equally full as well, with about a third of the seats taken.

Empty row in business class

Pre-departure drinks, hot towels, and the menus for tonight’s flight were offered.

Pre-departure drink

At departure time the captain added his welcome aboard, though I swear on my life it was Stewie from Family Guy. The similarities in his accent and enunciation were uncanny. He advised us of our flight time of 3hr32min, again expecting an on-time arrival.

Our taxi to the runway took about 10 minutes, and then we were airborne. The seabtelt sign was only on for about 10 minutes, after which the crew began their service.

The supper menu read as follows:

And the drink/wine list read as follows:

The supper service on this flight was a bit watered down compared to the outbound, given that it departed in the middle of the night. There was no salad or pralines, though it still looked great for a flight departing so late.

On this flight almost everyone opted to sleep, so all service was done by tray instead of cart.

Service began with drinks and nuts.

Diet Coke with lemon and almonds

Next the salmon starter and dessert were served on a single tray, along with bread from the breadbasket.

Smoked salmon with creme fraiche and asparagus, cherry tomato and zest

And then the main course was served, and I ordered the ricotta cheese and spinach ravioli. I wasn’t really hungry for the main course, so only had a few bites.

Ricotta cheese and spinach ravioli with grilled artichoke and chunky tomato sauce

Airshow during supper

I managed to get a bit of sleep on this flight thanks to all the extra blankets and pillows on the empty seats, allowing me to build a fortress of sorts.

I woke up as we were initiating our descent into Singapore, where the weather was horrible. It was quite turbulent on the descent and visibility was virtually non-existent, though we safely touched down a few minutes ahead of schedule and taxied to our gate at terminal one.

We bid farewell to the crew and hopped in a taxi to the Shangri-La to catch a few hours of shuteye before our Emirates flight to Dubai later in the evening.

Doing a Colombo “turn” is entirely painless, and I wouldn’t hesitate to do it again. Now, if I were originating in Hong Kong (and doing Hong Kong to Singapore to Colombo to Singapore to Hong Kong), well, that sounds like torture, and I’d definitely split up the journey.

While Cathay Pacific’s regional product might not be much, the food and service were both excellent given the flights, so they really exceeded my expectations.

  1. Nice to see some pictures and such, doing an ex-CMB in a few months and plan on spending a few days there to break up all the flying after coming in via HKG-BKK-CMB. Also should help avoid all the crap you got for the turnaround 🙂

  2. Was that guava juice as the pre-departure drink? If possible, I would like to find out the “turn” procedure in CMB from disembarkation to boarding the same aicraft again. I’m really interested and might give it a try one of thse days if I get bored. I’m sure I can do the CMB turn with the option of BKK as well. Thanks mate and lovely CX service as usual.

  3. @ Mike — Yep, I believe it was. No trick to the turn really. Just disembarked, went to lounge, and got back on the plane. All pretty easy.

  4. Where’s the picture of the mango pudding?

    Per a CX crew, they don’t do direct turn on this flight.

  5. @ Mike — Well you have to clear security at the gate, but they’re on the same level.

    @ Ken Y. — It’s in the appetizer picture. The dessert was served with the appetizer.

  6. Lucky: Have you ever counted the number of photos of diet coke and nuts that you have in your reports? I’m not complaining, but I find it funny you still put a photo in most of your reports. Seems like you could publish a book with nothing but photos of diet coke and nuts from various airlines! 🙂

  7. Cathay Pacific has always based the crew in Colombo, and the cabin crews work all the way from HKG to CMB via BKK or SIN, and then stayed one night at Colombo, and worked the next redeye return all the way to HKG. However, there was actually a time when CX is forced to base the crews at BKK or SIN, when the situation at Colombo was unstable due to civil unrest. That was almost five or six years ago. I remembered airlines had to change their flight time to daytime flights, due to the possible night strikes at the international airport. Anyway, since things are now back to normal, CX has returned to this pattern of overnighting the crew at Colombo. I actually don’t mind, as I don’t need to explain to crews why I am already flying back.

  8. @Adrian – You are correct. CX cabin crew used to work all the way from HKG-BKK/SIN-CMB, then get to stay at CMB for 2 nights, then work the way back to HKG. The reason why CX let crew to stay at CMB for 2 nights is that the timing of the flight is too tough on the crew. Crew used to have to stay up from midnight to noon to work all the way from CMB-SIN/BKK-HKG. Now CX decided to let the crew stay one night in CMB and another night in SIN/BKK to alleviate the exhaustion.

    @wwk5d – The meals of the flight to CMB are double-catered. Therefore the meal for the CMB outbound flight is probably from either SIN or BKK depending on where the aircraft was coming from.
    Then at SIN/BKK the next meal (breakfast) is loaded for the segment back to HKG.

  9. @Adrian

    That is not currently the case, at least for CMB-BKK; my crew three days ago only worked the one segment. And the ISM on my BKK-CMB flight was BKK based, though I didn’t notice if the crew was originating or continuing from HKG on that segment. They stay at the Hilton in Colombo, which is pretty far from the airport, though I guess there just aren’t any decent properties in Negombo and traffic is probably never an issue before/after the SIN/BKK flights. There is actually a dedicated CX crew lounge in the Hilton, which I once accidentally stumbled into thinking it was the Exec lounge.

  10. lucky

    I am going to the maldives next year and was thinking about positioning up to CMB and taking advantage of this F fare to get home to MCO instead of using miles.

    I have two questions for you.

    1. since you are a travel agent could you book the tix. for me?

    2. Is it possible to get the fare with a 2 day stop over in Dubai?


  11. @ Todd — Not all Diet Coke with lime/lemon and nuts are created equal, ya know! 😀

    @ wwk5d — As @ hahaha03 notes, I believe it’s double catered.

  12. @ rob — I’m not a travel agent so can’t book these. If you email me I’d be happy to refer you to an agent though. I know you can do a stopover in Europe, though don’t think you can do a stopover of more than 24 hours in Dubai.

  13. Was there a reason for this the Singapore – Columbo – Singapore flights?

    Were these flight on miles?

    Was this a mile run of sorts?

    If this was post already I appologize, I did not see it in the 3 posts about these flights.

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