BANGKOK AIRWAYS & QANTAS BUSINESS CLASS FLIGHT CHIANG MAI TO SYDNEY
Bangkok Airways Flight 907 (Chiang Mai to Bangkok)
Check in & Airport
Chiang Mai airport is small, like any regional or provincial airport. There are still eastern and western food options, and coffee stores, should you need provisions. But our slightly stressful check-in experience meant that we didn’t have much time to check these things out.
At check-in, we found out North Nomad needed a visa to visit Australia. Which was a surprise, as previously he hasn’t needed one from Canada or the U.S. to Australia. We wondered if the rules had changed, or if it was a Bangkok Airways regulation, or if it was something that customs/immigration sorted out for you when transiting through the United States (in Canada if you are going to Australia via the U.S., you clear customs in Canada – strange, I know!).
In any event, Bangkok Airways staff advised us that North Nomad could not board an international flight (though we had to change carriers at Bangkok Airport) without this visa. They also advised that it would take 72 hours to process his visa!
We had a mild panic at this point, as we had 20 minutes left to sort out the situation and check in. Thankfully, North Nomad sorted out the e-Visa online through the Australian immigration website. It cost $20 and took a while 5 minutes – not 72 hours thank goodness!
We went through to the gate, and the lovely security ladies let me take my chocolate soy milk through (in case this is your first time reading our blog – I don’t eat/drink dairy). It was very kind of them to show me some lenience with these rules, when I couldn’t get what I needed beyond the gate.
Class, Seating & Service
Bangkok Airways Flight 907 is all economy. We had good seats: 2E and 2F, and it’s a super quick flight from Chiang Mai to Bangkok. It takes 1 hour and 20 minutes, though doing good time, I think we made it there closer to 1 hour.
Service is pleasant and friendly, as we’ve come to expect from our time in Chiang Mai.
Food & Entertainment
Being a quick flight, juice, tea and coffee is served with a complimentary snack. My snack was a tasty grilled salad, with sesame seeds and a lemon wedge. It comes with a small fruit salad, and I had a glass of black tea with a slice of lemon. North Nomad’s snack was a chicken pie. He’s not a fan of pies, so I was much happier with my snack than he was with his.
There is no inflight entertainment.
Economy Class : Maximum weight allowance is 20 kilograms for adult and child / 10 kilograms for infant. Blue Ribbon Class (Business Class) : Maximum weight allowance is 30 kilograms for adult and child / 10 kilograms for infant.
Excellent tip for those flying economy with Bangkok Airways anywhere: if you sign up to their rewards scheme (which is free, and can be done online), you get an extra 10 kilograms! Pretty cool.
Qantas Airways Flight 24 (Bangkok to Sydney) Airbus A3330 (Two classes: Business & Economy)
Check in & Airport
Our layover at Bangkok Airport is 2 hours and 45 minutes. Bangkok Airport is pretty and well organised. I like the glass building, and the modern architecture. It’s a gorgeous, sunny day, and it feels quite relaxing with the sun shining in. Stunning Thai artwork lines the hall ways – which you’ll notice if you need to do the 1.5km walk (all inside, it’s a long airport) between domestic and international.
When I say organised, they have everything sorted out. There’s no worry about farangs (foreigners) getting lost, as they give us transfers stickers for our shirts, so we can be directed to the right area. Security is swift and efficient, even if we seem to have a bunch of white people ahead of us who don’t understand the rules about liquids when flying.
As we were flying business class to Sydney, I was quite looking forward to relaxing with a drink in the Qantas lounge. But after 60 days in Chiang Mai, all poor North Nomad wanted was a Burger King burger (Hungry Jacks for our Aussie readers). So off we trekked to Burger King and indulged in burgers for North Nomad and fries for me, with coca cola.
Class, Seating & Service
I always look forward to Qantas flights, no matter what class I’m in. We’ve flown with numerous carriers, and Qantas seems to have better spacing, and happy flight attendants.
But let’s be frank, on an overnight flight for 9.5 hours, business class is so much more pleasant than economy. Being able to lay down and have a proper sleep makes everything more pleasant in the morning.
As we’d been slack with choosing our seats, we got the last row in the business class section. The seating is the Qantas “Skybed”, an angled recliner. Though, we hear an improved business class seat which will be fully flat and all seats will have aisle access will be rolled out towards the end of the year.
The seats themselves are extremely comfortable to sit and sleep in, though the electronics are a bit noisy. If you don’t use noise cancelling headphones and you are light sleeper, you’re going to hear the chair next to you being moved. There’s also a massage function, which is pretty nifty.
Sadly, the electronic controls in North Nomad’s chair doesn’t work properly. Which makes his movie hard to hear with weird cutting out noises, and the reclining a bit sticky.
The service, as always with Qantas, is fantastic. When it comes to night time, the attendants come around and give us our padded mattresses. We change into our Qantas pyjamas – grey with a velour black kangaroo. These are so comfortable we wish we’d taken them with us afterwards!
The toiletries are in Kate and Jack Spade bags, by Malin & Goetz. The quality is nice, and I take the reminder to use later.
Food & Entertainment
Because we don’t spend enough time together (NB: this is a joke – we’ve worked from home together every day for the past 2.7 years!), we choose a movie to watch together. It’s What We Do In The Shadows, a New Zealand horror/comedy mockumentary from Taika Waititi and Jermaine Clement (of Flight of the Conchords fame). I’m a fan of New Zealand comedy and really enjoy this movie.
For dinner, there’s the choice of zucchini and basil soup with parmesan, or the grilled eggplant, artichoke, and capsicum salad with yoghurt for a starter. For mains, you have a choice of honey roasted chicken ciabatta with chilli mayonnaise, pan-fried potato gnocchi with sauteed zucchini, tomato sauce, and pecorino, pan-fried salmon with wiltof, balsamic onions, capers and rosemary butter, red curry duck with sugar snap peas and fragrant rice. They each come with a green side salad with dressing, and a choice of rolls.
North Nomad chooses the salmon, which he’s happy with. So much so I don’t even manage to snap a photo of it! And because I’m difficult with my diet, I’ve pre-selected a vegetarian/vegan meal. Qantas has never messed up my vegan/vegetarian meal selections, unlike many other airlines.
My starter came on a crispy, purple cabbage leaf. It’s a salad of olives, avocado, artichoke, and orange. It’s nicely presented, but I dislike olives, avocado, and orange (yep, I’m difficult!), so I pick at it a little. The main is okra, stewed with lentils and tomato, with a roasted red capscium stuffed with rice. Now this dish I adore. All of my favourite things! It’s so tasty.
For breakfast, there’s an array of juices and fruit and yoghurt salad. For those who want a cooked meal, there’s mushroom, pancetta, and creamed eggs with slow roasted cherry tomatoes. I manage to sleep through most of the breakfast service, and North Nomad skips this meal.
When I wake up, our flight attendant hands me an apple breakfast muffin, and lets me know that it has no dairy or eggs. It’s very kind of him to reassure me about this without prompting. The muffin is delicious. It can be hard to get a vegan muffin spot on, but this has a perfect balance of moistness.
Overall, it’s an enjoyable flight. One we’d happily do again. 🙂
Economy 30 kgs, Business 40 kgs, with special allowances for Qantas club and frequent flyer members.
Total Cost: We booked these flights through Travelocity, with costs totalling: