Retro Review: United First Class, Tokyo-Singapore

United first class, Tokyo to Singapore


Flight: UA803
Departure time in Tokyo (NRT): 17:35
Arrival time in Singapore (SIN): 00:20 (+1)
Aircraft: Boeing 777-200
Seat: 1H
Duration: 7h 45m
Date of flight: February 7, 2014
*This is an award travel, First Class flight #7

When I was informed by the US Airways agent that Asiana changed aircraft from a 3-class to 2-class for their ICN-NRT flight in February 7 and that he couldn't find any availability in first class, I decided to move my flight a day earlier.

Exploring Tokyo

I did spend a night in Tokyo and met my friends in the morning before my United flight to Singapore. We made a quick tour and started with the Tokyo Sky Tree.

The Tokyo Sky Tree which opened in May 2012.

View of Mount Fuji from the Tokyo Skytree.

The Asahi Beer Hall is one of the most recognizable modern structures in Tokyo.

The Rickshaw ride 😉

Our last stop was the Asakusa Shrine, after which we had lunch. It was a very short tour but I really enjoyed it a lot specially because I was with my friends and that I really love Japan. By 2:30pm, I was already at the airport ready for my flight to Singapore.

Check-in, Desks B2 & B3

The check in counters for Global First passengers are located in zone B, from B2 to B3. It was actually empty when I arrived and I was assisted by a friendly agent with the check in process, and was done in a few minutes.

Priority Lane

I was given a priority lane card together with my boarding pass so I just went straight to the security control and as expected, it went smoothly.

United Global First Lounge

Flying in United Global First, I had access to the United Global First Lounge.

Aircraft, Boeing 777-200

The beautiful Boeing 777-200 taking us to Singapore that Friday afternoon.

Boarding, Gate 38

Boarding started on time at Gate 38. Although it was stated on my boarding pass that I had Boarding Group 1, I was expecting they would have a separate boarding for first class passengers. Unfortunately, there were too many passengers who have status and I ended up at the back of a long queue. It was my first time to experience this but I guess I just have to come early next time.

Luckily, they have a separate passenger bridge for first class passengers.

First Class Cabin

The cabin has a total of 8 seats in first class with a 1-2-1 configuration.

Seat 1H

I tried to secure a window seat but it was impossible since the flight was full and had my seat booked last minute.

The personal TV screen is pretty average, or maybe even sub par 😉

On the left side of the seat, you can find the the USB ports, seat controls and entertainment controls.

On the right hand side is the reading lamp.

The headset was pretty basic as well.

The United slippers were okay.

A few minutes later, the cabin attendants distributed eye masks, toothbrush and toothpaste. I was expecting a "real" amenity kit (with Philosophy brand products) since I read from their website that they were giving such items on this flight, a part from the fact that it was also stated on the last page of the menu card that was handed to me (NRT-SIN, February United Global First Service). When I politely asked for it, the cabin attendant told me that what was written on the card was wrong and that they don't have it on board, just the eye masks and toothbrush and that she would inform the company to change what was written on the card. I was able to get a reply from United's twitter account a few days after the flight and they apologized for the miscommunication regarding the amenity kit. They asked for my full name and shipping address and was told they would ship it.

Pre-departure Beverage

A glass of water

Dining

The United Global First Menu card.

Warm nuts and a glass of water to start.

The table set up was lovely, although I missed that yellow rose from the Asiana first class flight the other day.

Chilled Appetizer
Garlic shrimp, sweet sesame pork and vegetable sushi roll

From the wine list, they had Philipponnat Reserve Millesime 2005, Henriot Brut 2007 and Nicolas Feuillatte Brut but when I asked the flight attendant which champagne was the one she served me, she told me it was not from the list and showed me another bottle from the galley which was actually Lanson Brut Vintage 2002.

Fresh Seasonal Greens
Cucumber and tomatoes with your choice of creamy garlic dressing or sesame vinaigrette

Chicken and Pumpkin Curry, Caramelized shallot rice and sauteed asparagus 😋

The other choices for the main course were:

Braised short rib of Beef, Pan-seared Fillet of Salmon and Open-faced Ham and Gouda Cheese Sandwich.

Dessert
Ice Cream with your choice of toppings 😋

Lavatory

Inside the lavatory were the Philosophy brand products.

Time to Sleep

It was stated on the card that the turndown service can be done upon request but since I didn't want to bother the cabin attendant anymore, I decided to do it myself 😉

First Class Amenity Kits

In April 2, I received not one but 3 amenity kits from United. Thanks guys 😍

Limited edition amenity kit featuring United hubs. I got the LAX version 👍

United Business First amenity kit

United Global First amenity kit

CONCLUSION

It was my first time flying in United Global First and since I've read many flight reviews from different bloggers saying that they would prefer Asian carriers than North American carriers when flying in first class, I didn't expect much from this flight. I thought the food was okay, the service was also very nice and the seats were comfortable. The only thing I missed was the amenity kit since I am a collector and would really like to have one from United. I don't care much about the food and the wine since I prefer tangible souvenirs. Overall, a nice flight 😉