Flight Review: MEL-AKL-PEK on Air China CA 784 Premium Economy (Part 2)

The second leg of my flight from Auckland to Beijing was operated by Air China. There was no lounge access given to Premium Economy (PE) class passengers on Air China. Fortunately I had access to Priority Pass lounges – Strata. You can read my review on the Strata lounge here.

There was no priority boarding for PE passengers. I had to queue up with all the other economy class passengers. The boarding was quite orderly and since I only had a small bag with me – not having to worry about space in the overhead cabin – I wasn’t in a hurry to board.

Air China’s PE is basically an economy class seat with plenty of legroom. Whilst the real estate here is quite generous in a PE product but if you are someone like me who cannot sleep without lying flat, then the legroom is kinda pointless – if you get what i mean.

This was how much space I had. The seating arrangement was a 3-3-3. I had an empty seat in between me and another passenger. The funny thing was we could have our bags not under the seat and the crew were fine with that.

So what did I get on CA784 Premium Economy class?

  • A bottle of water
  • A towel – I can’t remember whether that was a hot or cold one
  • A pillow
  • A cool pair of slippers

Since CA 784 was a red-eye flight, I was served dinner/supper and breakfast. I picked fish for dinner because I was confident of the quality of fish out of Auckland. =P

The only gripe I had was the cling wrap over the salad/fruits/dessert. See how loosely wrapped it was? The return flight CA783 from Beijing to Auckland was worse! See pictures below.

About 2 hours before landing in Beijing International Airport, breakfast was served.

Conclusion

Imagine traveling from the vibrant city of Melbourne to the bustling metropolis of Beijing with a layover in the stunning city of Auckland. Now imagine getting to experience all of this while sitting comfortably in the Premium Economy class of Air China. While it may not be the most luxurious option out there, it certainly won’t break the bank. For a return journey costing around A$1700, Air China’s Premium Economy offers an affordable option for travelers on a budget.

While the overall rating for Air China’s Premium Economy may not be as high as some of its competitors, there are still some highlights to be found. The complimentary slippers are a nice touch and definitely add a touch of comfort to the journey. However, if you’re looking for a top-notch premium experience, you may want to look elsewhere.

On the other hand, if you’re willing to spend a bit more and want to experience true luxury in the skies, Air New Zealand’s Premium Economy is definitely worth considering. The extra cost may be significant, but the level of service and comfort provided by Air New Zealand is second to none. In fact, it’s so good that even someone who typically dislikes flying long haul in economy class wouldn’t hesitate to do so on Air New Zealand’s Premium Economy. So why not treat yourself to a truly luxurious experience and fly with Air New Zealand on your next journey?

italics: This is not a paid statement by Air New Zealand although I wish it was.

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Kolin
Kolin
K̶Colin sleep travels poorly. He can't seem to find a hotel bed that shares the unique olfactory charm of his own.