Philippine Airlines (PAL) have a very attractive Business Class fare, about 1,100 USD (4,100 Dhs) from UAE to Manila roundtrip! That's about almost 20 hours of flying for 1,100 USD with flat bed in Business Class! Is this offer too good to be true? Let's check it out!
This review focuses on my return flight from Manila to Dubai as it was a day flight so I could take better photo and video.
PAL use both Terminal 1 and 2 of Ninoy Aquino Int'l Airport (NAIA). My flight to Dubai departs from Terminal 2, which is exclusively used by PAL.
PAL offers cash upgrade at check-in. However, given the cheap Business Class airfare, I don't think this is a good option.
Philippine Airlines Business Class lounge is call Mabuhay Lounge. Located right behind gate 6 in Terminal 2 of Ninoy Aquino Int'l Airport (NAIA).
The lounge is quite basic, with a variety of food on offer. It can get quite crowded during peak hours.
Boarding started strictly on-time with priority boarding was given to Business Class passengers. I love the view from this terminal, an adjacent PAL A340 is ready to bound for LAX as flight PR112.
There are 18 business class seats in this high density A330-300 primarily serving the Middle East due to large Filipino expat workers demand. This is NOT the current Business Class offering of Philippine Airlines which they have a better one with all aisle access (Thomson Vantage XL seat).We have just 5 passengers today in Business, so there are a lot of room. Every one got an empty seat next to themselves.
Right behind Business Class is the small section of Premium Economy Class with 3-3-3 seating configuration. There are total of 33 seats in this quiet section.
Once settled, I notice this "odd" thing of the footrest! Yes, one is higher than the other! I will show you more picture of the seats when it goes fully reclined.Charles Heidsieck Champagne Brut was offered among Mabuhay punch (ice-tea), OJ, lemon-mint juice and water.
I was also surprised L'Occitane branded amenity kit and slipper were handed out on this dayflight flight.
There are no storage place or small table near the seat. Rather it is in front of the seat. I ordered a glass of signature drink, Mabuhay Punch, which is an ice-tea!After take-off, lunch is served. There are a choice of three main course; Filipino, Arabic and Western option.
The starter is prawn with quinoa, which taste fine!My main course; Estilo Afritada, cod fillet with tomato sauce. (Filipino food)
Dessert was buco panna cotta which topped with tapioca. I forgot to take a picture here but you can see it on my video.
The food was basic but fine. Flight attendant was very attentive and constantly refilling my drinks always with a smile.
You may have already noticed, there are no in-flight entertainment screen at the seat back. The crew handed out iPad instead. The iPad is connected with in-flight streaming include a live route map which is handy.
Since I have both seats to myself, I made one for bed and one for lounging 🙂
Let's have a detail look when they recline into fully flat bed.
My choice would be the upper bed as I tried out both and the upper one felt longer, much more private than the lower one. I felt too close to the ground on the lower one.
For the inner seats, it definitely present a problem to hop over your neighbour to go out on a full flight. Fortunately, I didn't face this problem.
I slept well on the upper bed for about 4 hours. The width was slightly narrow but manageable.
A great plus of Philippine Airlines is that it offers a free wi-fi for all passengers up to 15Mb and 30 minutes of usage. After that you can purchase additional hour for $5 or whole flight for $20. The speed was average when I tried. Not good for Instagram browsing but good for Whatsapp messaging.A look at the rather cramp 3-3-3 Economy Class on the high density A330-300.
Checking out the Economy and Premium Economy Class meal and snack.
The crew were so friendly. They felt my AvGeek enthusiasm and kindly offered me a tour of their crew rest area which is located below the main deck via an entrance door. There are total of 8 crew bunks.
A second meal was served about 1.5 hours before landing into Dubai. I have the corned beef sandwich with corn chips which is very tasty.