For our trip from Germany to Sydney, Australia we had many choices of airlines. But, with flights consisting of a first leg from Frankfurt to Dubai at 6.5 hours and the next leg to Sydney being almost 14 hours, our selection was more about comfort over price.
Luckily for us, when we found flights onboard Emirates, we took advantage of a fantastic sale they were offering at the time: Buy One Business Class Ticket and Get a Second at 50% Off! Then, we used credit card points to upgrade to First Class. Basically, we paid for one First Class Ticket and got the other free.
Now, we have flown First Class a couple other times (usually as an upgrade), but being in the air 20 hours each way — we were in for a relaxing trip!
The check-in process at the Frankfurt Airport was basically the same, but we were able to relax in the Lufthansa First Class Lounge. Airport lounges (for the most part) outside of the United States are an oasis in the mayhem of air travel. Normally, we take advantage of the “Business Class” Lounge, which even those are nice.
So, even before we boarded our plane, we had a delicious meal and drinks while relaxing in very comfortable lounge chairs. Our goal for flying was to rest as much as possible given the time zone difference between Germany and Australia (9 hours difference).
Time to board our flight to Dubai…
We were escorted to the First Class Cabin which has individual pods for each seat. There is a button you push to close the door for privacy with the walls being about 5-feet tall (high enough to not see people walking past).
The seats are wide and cushioned. Not only do they lay flat to a full 6-foot-long bed, but there are massage controls as well. On the side arm rest, pressing a button raises and lowers your own private bar stocked with alcohol, sodas, and water. In front of the seat is a wide-screen 42″ television and a lighted vanity area stocked with lotions, sanitizer, and other amenities.
When we booked our flights, Amanda and I selected window seats with her sitting in front of me. In the center are side-by-side pods where the center wall can lower as well for couples flying. But, we wanted to see out the windows.
Once seated, an attendant stopped by with selections of juice or champagne… of course, I had the sweet bubbly — I mean, who turns down a glass Dom Perignon. She returned a few minutes after to take our order for dinner which consisted of a four-course meal. Other than more Dom, I requested caviar as one of the first plates.
While still waiting to take off, the attendant came by again to offer us a tour of the bar area and shower…. yes, that is right… A SHOWER ON A PLANE!!!
At the front of the First Class area is a free-standing bar fully stocked with any drink you can imagine along with various bar foods. Most of the drinks were “help yourself” but there was an attendant there to help. So, if I had any problems trying to sleep, a few shots would definitely help.
But, then came time to tour the SHOWER!!! We gave a time that we would like to use this during our flight, which we chose to go 30-minutes at the end of dinner. Amanda went first coming back and telling me simply one word… WOW!
Now, it was my turn… Of course, I didn’t need a shower having taken one a few hours before at home before… but, who turns down a chance to take a shower at 40,000 feet on a plane!!
From the amenities area, I retrieved my Emirates pajamas they gave to us with slippers and off to the shower I went…
The shower area is a large section with a toilet, sink, a changing bench, clothes closet, and then a stand-up shower. I am 6-feet-4-inches (193cm), and the ceiling of the shower was at least a foot higher. And, it is wide enough to bend over, so it is not too small where there is no room to move. It is very spa-like for sure!
You have 20-minutes to use the shower spa. With that, you have 5-minutes of shower water. There is a control knob to push to start & stop the water flow, and a lighted gauge to provide how much water time is left. The attendant advised us to start the water, stop it to apply your shampoo and soap, and then start again to rinse off. I am sure they are very clear on these directions because I can only imagine how many people have stuck their soaped-up head outside the door asking for more water.
This was such a relaxing and enjoyable experience on board. The best part… the flights consisted of 4 legs to Australia and back, so that meant 4 showers (even though the second was only a few hours earlier).
So, yes, it is a very expensive way to fly, and thankfully we took advantage of a sale and our credit card points to help. As another perk of 20-hour flights to and from Australia, we racked up enough Emirates points to help us book another First Class trip between Germany and Mauritius.
In the future, when I fly Coach…. I will close my eyes remembering the First Class cabin on Emirate while pretending I am there.