Forty years ago, Philippine Airlines unveiled its most innovative plane at that time, the Airbus A300B4 proudly bearing the Love Bus “kiss mark” logo.
So fittingly, during PAL’s 5th anniversary, it is yet again another exciting time to fly with the revival of the Love Bus—the same iconic logo placed on their 5th ultra-modern A350 Airbus!
But what makes the A350 so special? The next-generation A350 incorporates a range of technological touchstones that improve both passenger experience and aircraft operations aboard long-haul routes. It is installed with more quiet Rolls-Royce Trent XWB engines, the most fuel-efficient engines in service today. With its extra wide body, personal tv screen, free inflight wifi and heartfelt Pinoy hospitality, you’ll definitely fall in love with flying over and over again.
Airbus A350s currently offer business, premium economy and economy seats. Here’s my experience on the A350…
Manila-Bangkok route flies 25 times a week; and Cebu-Bangkok, thrice weekly.
The same A350 aircraft is currently used for PAL’s London, New York and Toronto flights.
The Airbus A350 has a 295-seating capacity: 30 on business class, 24 on premium economy and 241 on regular economy.
For those who have flown in PAL’s first Love Bus, you’ll be fascinated with the throwback Love Bus-themed inflight gimmicks.
You’ll also find two flight attendants in their 1979 uniforms servicing on board.
What I love about the premium economy is that it’s an exclusive cabin with only 24 seats in a 2-4-2 configuration, which means fewer people in the bathroom lines and faster service compared to standard economy.
Tip: Premium Economy offers greater baggage allowance as well as convenience and ease with priority check-in and boarding.
Other things separating premium economy from its standard economy counterpart are a guaranteed 38-inches of pitch and a seat width of 19 inches.
I’m actually impressed with the extra inch of legroom that’ll make a big difference in long haul flights.
The seats have a recline of up to 8 inches and are equipped with built-in leg and foot rests, additional front pockets for personal items, bottle holders and reading lights.
Each seat, from business class to standard economy, has its own personal tv screen, offering a wide selection of entertainment options perfect to distract you during long haul flights. Power ports are available under the seat and beside your personal TV screen.
The manufacturer also installed Wi-Fi systems on the jet as its own factory, making it easier for airlines to offer free in-flight internet. I was able to upload my Instagram stories while in the air! So cool!
Thailand really does have something for everyone! From history, architecture, traditions, beaches as well as sumptuous food and crazy nightlife, Thailand has something to fit each and every personality! It’s cheap and safe, and its street food is no doubt one of the best in Southeast Asia.
Here’s a sample 2-day itinerary of the not so usual tourist spots in Bangkok…
We stayed at the Centara Watergate Pavilion that was conveniently a few minutes away from the shopping centers, including Talad Neon night market and Platinum Fashion Mall.
On day one, it felt like I’ve gone around Thailand in a single day.
Visit the Ancient City or Muang Boran, a huge open-air museum shaped in the form of Thailand where you can find replicas of the most prominent shrines and temples from all regions of the country.
It’s a great place for a day trip especially if you’re pressed for time in Bangkok.
Blue Elephant is an award-winning upscale restaurant known for serving seriously delicious authentic Thai food. Housed inside a charming old Thai-Chinese structure built in 1903, the restaurant doubles as a culinary school famed for using locally sourced ingredients.
It was one of the best meals we had. We heard the owner and Master Chef Nooror Somany-Steppe is world famous for her Royal Thai cooking.
For the kids and kids at heart, take an adventure drive into Safari Park and explore the wildlife up-close and personal. Come face-to-face with herds of giraffes, zebras, tigers and lions.
You can bring your own car and follow the safari route, but in our case, we brought the whole bus.
Discover modern Thai history and visit the Jim Thompson House, a perfect example of East meets West style home filled with the art collection of the Legendary American of Thailand who catapulted the silk trade to fame.
What really got our attention was… we heard he was a spy and disappeared in KL during a vacation. (Though the tour guides won’t confirm anything… haha!)
Known as the King of Silk, his well-preserved house, you’ll find, is filled with silk and ornaments and rich history within its halls. You can also check out the walking tours, cafes and gift shops.
What I Love About The Love Bus A350:
– Smoother take off and landing.
– Top notch entertainment.
– No more stop-overs for long haul flights!
– Wider legroom from the Business Class to Economy Seats compared to the average.
– More designated lavatories located in four different sections.
– The 80’s throwback theme, especially the colorful themed lights.
– Free Wifi onboard! (I could upload my IG Stories in the air!)
P.S. Use the code “PALLOVEBUS” and get P200 off for a minimum of 5 days on your next myPAL roam rental! Valid until end of 2019.
ABI of Team Our Awesome Planet
Disclosure: We were media guests of TAT Philippines and Philippine Airlines. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions and insights.