Cathay Pacific welcomed its first A350-900XWB on Sunday 29th May 2016 when B-LRA landed at Hong Kong International Airport from Toulouse, France. The airline has fifteen more A350s on order, including one A350-100 altogether 48 aircraft are scheduled to join the Cathay Pacific A350 stable.
Visitors at the arrival preview were able to take a peek at the latest inflight products in the Business Class, Premium Economy Class and Economy Class cabins, which Cathay Pacific expects will ‘enrich the experience of passengers’ while helping the airline to deliver on its promise of a Life Well Travelled.
…. We understand that for our passengers, sleeping well, enjoying first-class entertainment, and using products that have been designed with them in mind are of the utmost importance. The new A350 will provide the very best of all these. The lower cabin pressure and noise levels combine with our new features to set passengers up for the best sleeping experience possible in the skies. We have gone all out to provide the best inflight entertainment too. All seats come with the latest high-definition touchscreen personal TVs and a greater selection of movies, TV, live news channels and music. Inflight Wi-Fi is also available to connect passengers to family, work and world events, if they choose. We could not be more excited with what we’ve seen so far of the A350, and I’m sure that our passengers will feel the same way once they step on board. This superbly efficient aircraft will help us further expand our global network and strengthen Hong Kong’s reputation as an international aviation hub, helping to oil the wheels of commerce and trade in our home city. Cathay Pacific Chief Operating Officer Rupert Hogg
Airbus has already taken note of passenger preferences in developing the A350, responding by building an aircraft with an extra wide body to offer more space and comfort. Passengers will appreciate the quiet cabin, panoramic windows, LED mood lighting and larger overhead lockers which all contribute to a more comfortable and relaxing journey in all cabin classes.
Passengers in Business Class will enjoy a fully flat bed seats and new features which include extra stowage space within easy reach as well as a “Do Not Disturb” and “Wake Up Call” function included in the entertainment system.
The Premium Economy Class and Economy Class seats also come with a number of new features that will strike a chord with most travellers. The dedicated tablet holders makes it easier for passengers to enjoy entertainment content on their own device without having it sliding around on the tray table and power outlets and USB ports to allow you to use it for the duration of your trip. The proper cup holder will also be welcome. The six-way headrest in Economy Class is a proprietary innovation designed to provide better support and enhanced sleeping comfort.
Each Premium Economy Class seat has a fully integrated leg rest which, together with the ergonomically designed seat, allows more flexibility to adjust for optimal comfort.
The new A350 inflight entertainment system is equipped with new interactive features offering more inflight entertainment options for passengers, with a wider screen in all classes.
The A350s will also have internet connectivity, installed for the first time in a Cathay Pacific aircraft. It won’t be offered free, but at least you’ll be able to browse the internet, send and receive emails and connect on social media. Access to the Cathay Pacific website, a number of partner websites and three live TV news channels is available free of charge.
When does it go into service?
Cathay Pacific’s first A350-900 will enter service on the 1st June 2016 – that is, it’s happened just a couple of days after arriving in Hong Kong – with a turnaround flight to Manila. The single aircraft will fly mainly to regional destinations until more A350s arrive, when the aircraft will be deployed on various long-haul routes – including London Gatwick and Düsseldorf expected to be in the third quarter of 2016.
They don’t tell us what the prize is, or how many, but if you’re keen to try…….