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Xiamen Airlines Business Class Inaugural 787 New York JFK Flight

Xiamen Airlines Business Class Inaugural 787 New York JFK Flight
My first inaugural trip experience on board a critical flight in the history of XiamenAir, one of Asia’s largest and safest airlines. While XiamenAir is almost 33 years old, it has only recently begun to expand outside the Asia market. I simply had to be on this flight especially given that it would be the debut of the brand new 1-2-1 business class seat on XiamenAir.

There is much to say about this flight that would exceed Youtube’s video description length. However, I wanted to talk about the XiamenAir management. After we took off, the man sitting in seat 1A started going down the aisle and talking with each of the passengers, many of which already knew each other. As he came closer to my seat all the way in the back, I was unsure if he would talk to me since we don’t know each other. However, he did came by and welcomed me onboard. One of the senior pursers came by as he was talking to me and told me that he is actually the CEO of XiamenAir, Mr. Zhao Dong. Mr. Dong then actually apologized that everyone knew each other and so it might be uncomfortable or awkward for me, but also remarked that everyone is friends here since we are flying together. When I told him that I specifically came to fly on this flight, he became very surprised and gave me his business card. He asked me why I would travel so far for this flight. When I told him about my childhood dream of being a pilot and my love of flying, he invited over the captain of this flight, who was on a break, to talk to me. I found out that our captain was their most senior pilot as he is the director of their flight operations department, and an instructor pilot on the 737/787. Mr. Li told me that an empty airliner is no fun to fly and so welcomed me as well. From Mr. Dong, I found out that our purser is their most senior purser, who is in charge of the training of their 5000 flight attendants. When I mentioned to her the English mistakes I had found on the menu, she prompted relayed this to Mr. Dong, and promised me this would be corrected. At the end of the flight, Mr. Dong again thanked me for being on this flight. Our captain also insisted I disembark before him even though he had to be at a press conference. Never before had I heard upper level management be so open to feedback and treat their customer with such respect or interest.

The XiamenAir’s flight crew were exceptional as well. They were so full of personality, and I truly found them to be interesting and fun to talk to. I interacted with two crew members in particular. Both were incredibly sweet. As the crew were taking dinner orders and delivering meals, one of them came and apologized that it was taking so long to get to me. She told me that one of the items already ran out, and was worried that other options would run out before they get to me, so she decided to come to see first before some of the other seats. It was pretty funny later on in the flight when a member of the press saw what I was eating and told me she was disappointed that they ran out of the meal I was having. The other crew member spent a while talking to me about my travels and mentioned to me that she had met several US bloggers while on the inauguration flight to Seattle. She love to joke around and was very playful.

One can argue that since the CEO and the press were onboard, it is understandable that the FAs on this flight are their best. However, it also means that Xiamen is capable of training and attracting flight crews of this quality. Now that Xiamen’s long haul business class includes direct aisle access in business class using the same seat as Cathay, American, EVA, and China Airlines, I don’t find it hard to believe that one day they will be rated as 5 stars as well, especially if the management is genuinely able to listen to their travelers.

  • Show Comments (31)

  • Asia Travels

    For people who are curious about the lounge facilities at Xiamen’s base, here is a review and excellent quality photos: https://thedesignair.net/2016/01/29/xiamenair-open-new-flagship-lounge-in-xiamen-gaoqi-international-airport-terminal-3/

  • Robert Daniel Curtis

    This is a great video, but throughout the video I had a burning question in my brain. Why are so many people apart of the Xiamen Airlines crew so pleased to meet your acquaintance? They treat you as if you’re a governor in China, or a Chinese government official.

  • Charlostain Sawshades

    Xiamen airlines safest in Asia??? Dear sir, you need to take Hainan Airlines more often

  • John Wong

    Business class with no airport lounge service ?

  • ADmanamDA W

    Great Trip Report video! Thanks for sharing the wonderful FOC-JFK inaugural flight experience! I really like XiamenAir for its great services, and I am very delighted to see its rapid long-haul international route expansions during the past few years.
    Sorry for being a little picky, but I have two little corrections here:
    1. (At 9:01) I am pretty sure that XiamenAir’s General Manager is called Zhao Dong 赵东. Zhao is his last name, and Dong is his first name, so he is Mr. Zhao, not Mr. Dong ; )
    2. The main course at 18:54 is Sha Cha noodles 沙茶面, not Cha Sha.

  • John Wong

    Business class with no airport lounge service ?

  • Felix Y

    Great video! And what an opportunity it is to talk with the top management people of an airline. The service seems excellent! Though I do wonder what the flight experience will be like without it being the inaugural flight and without the management there.

  • Syed Hoque

    You have 7,856 Subscribers – 1 subscriber for each mile between Fuzhou and JFK. 7,856 miles.

  • Daniel F Chen

    Was always skeptical about Xiamen airlines. I always fly CZ or MU but next time I’ll give them a try, thank you for the video

  • Dale Soriano

    One day, will try Xiamen Airlines once given a chance… looks like their service is at par with other 5 star airlines. 🙂 Thanks for sharing this vid.

  • Brendan Berkhout’s Travel Videos

    Absolutely awesome inaugural flight. You documented it so well, thanks for sharing this with us! From the awesome celebrations at the airport to the fantastic management and crew on your flight. I have heard many good things about Xiamen Air and can’t wait to try them out. I wish them lots of luck and am sure they will succeed. I just love the blue color you see everywhere. Being on inaugural flights is always so much fun. You can see how proud Xiamen are about this new flight and they should be! They went all out on the celebrations, I would have also barely slept on this flight. Wouldn’t want to miss anything lol

    Thanks again for sharing this great video!


  • aviation universe

    olive juice ???? i never drink it in my life i am  quite curious about it

  • Илья Казмерчук-Беломытцев

    Very cool!!!

  • Calvin

    There was a celebrity?


    I don’t why those performances awkward me

  • Steve Bee

    Good video…thanks….looks like a nice business class cabin.

  • 浅倉慶子

    copy mickey LOL

  • Shingi Sa

    The PEK-JFK Air China hoppers, should seriously consider making a stop-over in Fuzhou and take this flight! And GOOD ENGLISH that FA is speaking, amazing really.

  • Phantim3dx

    I did not know this was sanctioned by Disney, superman, and captain america! LOL

  • l 넷공tv l


  • Double DIY

    Similar logo to Air Koryo.

  • Tommy Tian

    I think Xiamenair and Hainan are by far the two best carriers in Mainland China and are starting to become a very serious competitors in the world as far as service is concerned. The ‘Big Three’ are just embarrassing compared to these two.

  • erikvive

    Great Video! Btw, 17:13 sounds like their CEO’s last name is Mr. Zhao rather than Dong which is his first name.

  • Thor Swenson

    I work at Disneyland in Anaheim, California. The unapproved and completely illegal use of Mickey and Minnie Mouse, in horrible cheap looking costumes no less, is so funny and yet so tacky and classless. It’s stuff like this, the complete disregard for laws and basic politeness, that make 21st century Chinese culture the laughingstock of the world. How shameful of Xiamen Airlines to allow such a tacky, illegal display. But at least it’s funny to laugh at!

  • Alden Mercado

    5:07 why the attendant going bacward omg 😱🤣🤣🤣🤣

  • John Wong

    Business class with no airport lounge service !

  • Protocol Officer

    The pre-inauguration show was very amateurish and the addition of Minnie and Mickey Rat didn’t help. Where did they find these abhorrent creatures anyway?

  • Mike McGlock

    All of the Chinese airlines are trash

  • Bushangels

    “长乐-法拉盛” 😁

  • Hojoon

    Excellent video as always, I really like your reviews. I should use Xiamen someday (I live in Seoul and have yet to use a Chinese carrier). KE and OZ tend to be quite expensive although their service is good.

  • Jason Cavitt

    Seven-eighty-what? I’m all hung up on those stewardesses.

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