Several years have passed since I have flown on China Eastern on an international flight. Last time it was a business class flight from Shanghai to Los Angeles. At the time I was not impressed with the plane, the seats were too uncomfortable, the food was not good and overall the service was below any one airline I had flown.
Then over the years I have flown on multiple domestic flights operated by China Eastern, with the conclusion that it was no different than any other domestic airline…They were OK.
So this time, having to fly from Shanghai to Tokyo/Narita, I looked at various options. One of them was a JAL flight, which turned out to be operated by China Eastern. I hesitated for a moment and then I thought “how bad can it be…” Let’s go for it.
Well, it was bad…! The flight from Shanghai to Tokyo is a 3 hour one. In this day and age when airlines are competing with more and more amenities, China Eastern is way behind…and almost feels that they do not care a whole lot…
Where do I start:
* Seats – they are just bad. I get more room on an American airlines or United airlines domestic flight…you can tell the plane is packed seat wise when your standard 22inch roll-aboard suitcase has hard time going along the walkway on the plane…
* in-flight entertainment: what in-flight entertainment :-). No individual screens for economy. Really! On an international flight of 3 hours!!! Really?!?!
There were the proverbial central drop down screens. But the content that played on those was horrible for in-flight entertainment!
Let’s see – it consisted of
1. commercials/advertisements for cars – every passenger on board needs to buy a Nissan Teanna, or Huyndai,or…etc
* endless propaganda video about the Shanghai Expo! All these happy folks singing and dancing at the Expo. I have been to the Expo – and let me tell you – I did not see those dancing folks 🙂
2. then it was the high point of the entertainment – the Chinese version of American idol — with heavy promotion for www.yuepaiyuegao.com
At this point in time I was hoping I can fall asleep fast 😉
* food – well, this was also sub-par. I have had better on pretty much any of my domestic China flights
So what is left then? Safe arival at your destination…? Let’s hope so (I am writing this while on-board of the described flight);
One lesson learned here – no more China Eastern Airline flights – especially international ones. Life is too short to spend hours being uncomfortable 🙁