Review: Thai Airways 777 Business Class Bangkok to Frankfurt

Flight Number
TG920
Aircraft
Boeing 777-300ER
Duration
11 hours 30 minutes
Date
April 2022
Rating

I flew Thai Airways 777 “Royal Silk” business class from Bangkok to Frankfurt as part of my return journey from Malaysia.

The idea behind this rather roundabout routing was to tag onto a Singapore Suites flight departing from Frankfurt right afterwards. To accomplish this, we needed to get ourselves from Southeast Asia to Europe, and so I decided I may as well try out a new long-haul business class product in the form of Thai’s 777. 

In This Post

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Booking

I went ahead and redeemed 80,000 Aeroplan points per person for this flight, as per Aeroplan’s Atlantic–Pacific reward chart between Bangkok and Frankfurt.

The overall redemption was Singapore–Bangkok–Frankfurt, with the first regional flight in Thai Airways economy class – the only seats that were available – and the second long-haul flight in Thai’s Royal Silk business class cabin. 

Although the rate of 80,000 points wasn’t necesarily an overly attractive Aeroplan sweet spot for an overnight flight between Asia and Europe, this itinerary was the ideal solution we needed on this particular schedule, so I went ahead and bit the bullet to make the booking. 

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Ground Experience

After arriving in economy class from Singapore, there were long lines at the transit security checkpoint at the Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok.

We had just 15 minutes to spend at the Thai Airways Royal Sillk Lounge at Concourse E, so we quickly dipped in to enjoy a quick drink before boarding our flight to Frankfurt.

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Cabin

Stepping onboard, I found the Thai Airways Royal Silk business class cabin immersed in shades of rich purples and magentas, on brand with Thai Airways’s unique brand identity. 

This was my first time flying long-haul with Thai Airways in business class, although I had flown the airline once before on a regional short-haul flight. I was familiar with the cabin from last time around, but it was nice to see the distinct purple cabin once again.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Cabin

There are a total of 42 business class seats arranged in a staggered 1-2-1 configuration. The cabin is divided into a main business class cabin of 24 seats and a mini-cabin of 18 seats.

As is commonplace on many of these staggered seating arrangements, the window seats alternate between being closer to the window and closer to the aisle. 

Odd-numbered seats are closest to the windows and have some additional distance and privacy between the seat and aisle. These window seats are certainly best suited for solo travellers.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Seat 19A
Thai Airways 777 business class – Seat 19A

Meanwhile, the window seats in even-numbered rows are right up against the aisle, reducing the amount of privacy.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Window seat in even rows

For those travelling as a duo, middle seats in the even-numbered rows form “honeymoon seats” and are closest together. Odd-numbered rows will have more distance in between, thanks to the surface space of each seat in the middle.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Middle seats in odd rows

Despite the availability of couple-friendly middle seats, on this flight my partner Jessy and I both found ourselves in window seats – Seats 19A and 21A. We’d been together for a pretty long time on this trip, so it would be good to spend some time apart. 😉

There is potentially an advantage to choosing the bulkhead seats in both the main cabin and the mini-cabin. These seats offer some additional surface space at the front due to the shape of the seat shell, which might be something to keep in mind when flying this product.

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Seat

Immediately opposite the seat is the touch-screen entertainment system, with two USB ports in the lower right-hand corner of the screen.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Entertainment screen & USB ports

Below is the footwell, with some space for additional storage for small items, such as shoes. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – Footwell

The seat console on the right-hand side houses some surface space, a drink holder, and a reading light positioned near the shoulder. The older-generation seat controls and remote for the entertainment system are positioned beneath the surface.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Surface space
Thai Airways 777 business class – Seat and entertainment controls

Further storage space can be found at seat level; however, it was a small and cramped storage nook that quickly overflowed with only a few in-flight items placed there.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Storage space

To the right of the entertainment screen, the table tray is exposed and sits flush against the seat shell – not the most elegant placement for the table tray when not in use.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Tray table

The table can be folded down from its initial position and easily swivelled into place.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Tray table
Thai Airways 777 business class – Tray table

To the right of the tray table is a functional coat hook for hanging a garment. Meanwhile, beneath the tray table is the literature pocket.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Literature pocket

Overall, the Thai Airways 777 business class cabin and seats are very much beginning to show their age, with parts of the seat in loose shape and quite a bit of visible wear and tear. 

I was grateful to have a lie-flat bed awaiting me for this overnight journey, though beyond that, I wasn’t overly impressed with the surroundings as I settled in for takeoff.

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Amenities

On this flight, a bright yellow Mandarina Duck amenity kit awaited each passenger at their seat.

The inside offerings were fairly lean, with just a few items such as a toothbrush, hairbrush, and mouthwash, as well as Institut Karite lotion and lip chap.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Amenity kit
Thai Airways 777 business class – Amenity kit contents

We were served champagne just before take-off, and as always, I enjoyed indulging in a glass of bubbly as a pre-departure ritual. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – Welcome champagne

One notable missing amenity was the in-flight menu. As of this flight in April 2022, Thai Airways still doesn’t offer menus in business class as a means to reduce touchpoints due to the pandemic.

However, with many other airlines restoring full service in business class, I felt that this move was somewhat behind the times. I certainly would have appreciated having a menu to flip through and browse the food and drink selection, which is one of my favourite things about flying in premium cabins. 

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Meal Service

Even though there was no menu forthcoming, I still was curious to learn about the meal options that were being offered, and the Thai Airways cabin crew informed me of my choices as they came around to take meal orders.

For the main course, there was a choice between Thai beef curry and a Western fish dish served with a cream sauce. I opted to try the Thai beef curry, always looking to sample an airline’s native offerings whenever possible. 

I also decided to pick a non-alcoholic beverage, since I wanted to get some proper rest for most of the flight, and was pleasantly surprised that Thai Airways offers iced tea as a part of their drink menu.

Iced tea is one of my favourite drinks, but one that’s offered by all too few airlines around the world. Naturally, I opted for the iced tea and loaded up on multiple glasses over the course of the flight.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Iced tea

The meal began with a quick amuse bouche of salmon and cream cheese and a Caprese salad skewer. Both were delicious and a great start to the meal service.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Amuse bouche

My Thai curry was served served next, along with a quinoa appetizer, stir-fried noodles, and garlic bread on the side.

As soon as I took a bit of the curry, I was pleasantly surprised by its taste, but also found it very spicy. Even as someone who can handle a fair bit of spice, I found the curry had a real kick to it. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – Thai beef curry with stir-fried noodles
Thai Airways 777 business class – Thai beef curry
Thai Airways 777 business class – Stir-fried noodles

Indeed, I thought that this amount of spice was quite rare to experience in business class, and might well be a little too spicy for the average traveller’s palate. I found it to pack quite a punch as I nibbled my way through it, and needed quite a few glasses of iced tea to wash it all down.

Besides the beef curry, the quinoa salad appetizer didn’t leave much of an impression, as it was a somewhat plain rendition of an ingredient that I’m not a huge fan of in the first place.

The fruit plate was fine, but I was surprised that there was no further variety in terms of dessert.

Shortly after I polished off the curry, the crew came by to withdraw the plates, and offered some coffee or tea to wrap up the meal. Like many of the other passengers, I simply wanted to get some rest, so I declined and got ready for bed. 

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Bed

Thai Airways’s business class restrooms on the 777 are fairly conventional, with a baby changing table and a few amenities like hand lotion and perfume.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Restroom
Thai Airways 777 business class – Restroom baby changing table
Thai Airways 777 business class – Restroom amenities

There was no turndown service on this flight, so I went ahead and placed my bed in lie-flat mode and prepared to sleep for the majority of the journey. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – Bed
Thai Airways 777 business class – Bed

The footwell of the seat is relatively deep, and not as pointy as some other business class seat types out there, providing a reasonable amount of legroom and only a slight restriction on your movement due to the slight curvature of the seat. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – Legroom

I slept quite comfortably for about six hours before waking up as we were flying over Turkey, with just two hours of the flight left to go.

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Entertainment

The Thai Airways in-flight entertainment system features around 40 movies and 20 documentaries, a series of TV shows, and a few kids’ movies. The movie selection is limited to mainstream Hollywood and a handful of Asian options.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Movie selection
Thai Airways 777 business class – Movie selection
Thai Airways 777 business class – Airshow en route to Frankfurt

For the TV selection, the flight offered individual episodes as well as whole seasons of a few series, which is always good if you’re in the mood to binge. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – TV menu

Wi-Fi was not available on this Thai Airways 777, and it was one of my first flights in a long time that wasn’t equipped with Wi-Fi capabilities.

It wasn’t a huge deal on this flight when I mostly slept, but perhaps a consideration in whether or not you pick Thai Airways if you’re someone who needs to stay connected in the air. 

Thai Airways 777 Business Class – Snack Service

Since there was no in-flight menu, I attempted to get an understanding of Thai Airways’s snack service by speaking to the crew.

At first, the flight attendant informed me there were no snacks – but later returned and offered me a sandwich.

This was better than nothing, but since other Asian airlines have very elaborate snack offerings, I was certainly hoping for more. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – Snack

The pre-arrival meal would be served fairly shortly anyway, so I simply enjoyed another glass of iced tea in the meantime.

For my second meal, I opted for the Thai noodles with braised chicken over the Western option of a mushroom omelette.

The chicken was flavourful, if a little oily, and was served with mixed vegetables on the side. While I did enjoy this dish, it wasn’t quite as strong of a showing as the first meal.

Thai Airways 777 business class – Braised chicken and noodles
Thai Airways 777 business class – Braised chicken and noodles
Thai Airways 777 business class – Coffee

Then, perhaps after seeing my enthusiasm about the iced tea, the crew proactively offered me a purple beverage known as anchan, or butterfly pea flower tea.

I very much appreciated the gesture, as the Thai drink was delicious and I’ll now be seeking it out on future visits to Thailand. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – Butterfly pea flower tea

It turns out that the gesture may have had some ulterior motives, though, as the in-flight service manager then came by for a lengthy conversation, having seen that I was taking photos and recording video.

She spoke to me for about 10 minutes, explaining that some of the deficiencies on the flight that I may have perceived, such as the missing in-flight menu, were very much for the protection of the passengers and staff during the pandemic period.

She emphasized that they’d be reintroducing these services soon, but asked that I showcase “the good side” of the Thai Airways experience if possible, given that the airline had recently received some negative PR from online creators.

This was the first time I had experienced this type of onboard interaction, so it was certainly a bit odd. And although I appreciated the explanation, I still think Thai Airways is a little behind the times with reintroducing full service in business class. 😉

I continued to sip my anchan as I observed a beautiful sunrise over Europe, which reminded me of many of the flights I had taken pre-pandemic. Indeed, this was my first “round-the-world” trip since March 2020, so the joy of chasing sunsets and sunrises from the sky was something I was thrilled to rediscover. 

Thai Airways 777 business class – Sunrise view

Eventually, we made our descent into Frankfurt and touched down slightly ahead of schedule.

As I connected back to the 5G network, I received a notification that our onwards Singapore Airlines flight had been delayed for a few hours, which meant that we didn’t have to rush as we disembarked from the Thai Airways 777.

Conclusion

Thai Airways 777 business class is satisfactory, but it certainly won’t blow you away.

The hard product here on the 777 is lagging behind the competition. It’s comfortable enough and offers a lie-flat bed, but it’s no longer a cutting-edge product. 

On the other hand, even though I didn’t get to try everything on the menu – both because there was no menu and due to the overnight nature of the flight – the food and drink on this flight still impressed me with their creativity and strong flavours of the main courses.

Overall, there are likely better airlines to choose from if you’re headed to or from South East Asia. But if you’re going to Bangkok specifically, then Thai Airways can be a perfectly suitable option if it fits your schedule.

I’m hoping for a better experience the next time I fly with Thai Airways, whether on their newer Airbus A350s or perhaps on their recently reintroduced 777 First Class.

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