Review: Malaysia Airlines 737-800 Business Class Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur

Booking The Trip: A (slightly crazier) Southeast Asian Path to India
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YOUTUBE: EVA Air: Los Angeles to Taipei
YOUTUBE: UNI Air: Taipei to Seoul Incheon
YOUTUBE: Korean Air: Seoul Incheon to Bangkok
YOUTUBE: Malaysian Airlines: Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur
YOUTUBE: Malaysian Airlines: Kuala Lumpur to Mumbai
YOUTUBE: SpiceJet: Pune to Goa
YOUTUBE: Air India: Goa to Mumbai
YOUTUBE: Air India: Mumbai to Bengaluru
YOUTUBE: Air India: Bengaluru to Mumbai
YOUTUBE: Singapore Airlines: Mumbai to Singapore
YOUTUBE: Singapore Airlines: Singapore to Hong Kong
YOUTUBE: EVA Air: Hong Kong to Taipei
YOUTUBE: EVA Air: Taipei to Los Angeles


After spending some time in the Cathay Lounge and one of the Miracle lounges, it was time for boarding my Malaysia flight to Kuala Lumpur.

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Malaysia Airlines

Unfortunately, as nice as Bangkok Airport is, the windows are not clean and it’s hard to get good pictures.

I wanted to mention one thing which was specific to Malaysia Airlines departing Bangkok Airport and bothered me a little bit. So departure time was at 2:15pm and when I got my boarding pass from the check in counter, boarding time was slotted at 1:15 PM. This was a surprise to me since that’s a whole hour to board a 737 when my Korean Air 777-300ER flight boarded in less than 30. I asked the agent if this was right, and they said yes. So besides these reviews, I had actual work to get done in a timely manner, for which I needed internet. I left the lounge around 1:10 to get to the gate for 1:15 boarding. I get to the gate and the plane wasn’t even there for another 10 minutes. Thinking the flight was late, I used my phone to check FlightAware history for that flight. It was on time and it is always scheduled to arrive 10 minutes after that 1:15 boarding time. And because no announcement was made, I wasn’t sure when exactly boarding would start so I couldn’t go back to any lounge to get more work done. So I was not too happy as 30 minutes is a lot for getting more work done and the boarding time really shouldn’t be advertised as such. Anyways, onto the flight now.

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Plane

Boarding started with Business Class passengers followed by OneWorld elites and so I boarded.

BKK-KUL
Boeing 737-800W
7/4/19

Malaysia Airlines’ 737 has 4 rows of seating in a 2-2 configuration.

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seat 3D & 3F

We had seating’s s 3D and 3F which were on the right side of the plane. It’s a small detail but I liked Malaysia Airline’s color scheme.

Now here’s what I felt about the seat. The seat cushion was perfectly fine for a regional flight which is what these 737s are on. You won’t find them on a flight longer than 5 hours and for that duration, I thought the seat was comfortable. The seatback was a little thin for my liking but there was a plush pillow which made it perfectly already.

At the seat provided for us was a blanket, a nice pillow, and some headphones which are really all that’s needed for a two-hour flight.

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seat front

Even though the configuration was standard like any other narrowbody, one thing I must say is the legroom was excellent. I’m 5′ 10″ (1.78m) and I had plenty, plenty legroom to stretch out.

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seatback

I also had a nice view of the wing.

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wing view

Let me show you the other features of the seat.

There was a central console which I thought was actually a lot larger than the central console that other airlines have.

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central console

To the right of the sears, there were two different levers that controlled the recline of the seat itself and the legrest. So essentially if you went all the way on both, you could have a “poor man’s angled flat seat” as I call it. This could be useful on those 4/5 hour red-eyes from India to Kuala Lumpur.

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seat recline

Now this was an interesting surprise. Unlike most other airlines which have the powerports for both seats below the central console, the power port, USB port, and headphone jack was to the right side of the seat below the the outer armrest.

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powerport, USB port, headphone jack

Then, of course, was the remote which controls the in-flight entertainment.

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Remote

There was also individual air nozzles and since business class was in a 2-2 layout, you even had an extra nozzle. So we just put one on ourselves and another on the area between us.

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air nozzles

I thought the seat was well designed, and the seat had all the necessary features in good places needed for the flight.

Now let’s get to the service. A few minutes after seating, the purser came around for offering pre-departure beverage choices of guava juice, apple juice, and orange juice. I went with guava juice and it was tasty.

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guava juice

When the purser collected my drink, she offered a refill too which was nice and I had to decline as I was saving up for the meal. The best part of it all was that she was smiling through all of our interactions and I really appreciated that.

A hot towel was brought around a few moments later. I personally don’t like hot towels and like cooled towels more so I always open the towel and wave it around and in less than 10 seconds it becomes completely cool.

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hot towel

The purser also offered headphones after we pushed back but I declined as I wasn’t going to be using them.

As we were taxiing, the menu was brought around for the flight. I wasn’t expecting a menu on a 2-hour flight, but I was certainly glad they offered it!

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menu
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menu

And we were on our way. I really like Bangkok airport and the diversity of traffic it offers, not to mention the beautiful country views you get when flying out.

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taxi
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taxi

We had a standard takeoff roll and a nice climb.

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departure
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takeoff views
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more views
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and more views
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climb
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climb

It was a beautiful day of flight.

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flight

Within minutes of takeoff, the seatbelt sign was turned off and the crew quickly closed the curtain between economy and business and got to work.

The purser came and took drink and meal orders from everyone.

For drink orders, I went with sparkling water with lemon.  It also came with a dried berry trail mix.

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trail mix and sparkling water

And here’s just some of the things in the trail mix. It was an enjoyable trail mix.

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trail mix

A few minutes later, the crew came around with lunch which was all served on one tray. I wish the crew removed the plastic covers from the meal as it kind of detracts from the presentation but it wasn’t a big deal.

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lunch

Oh, man was I in for a treat on this meal.

This was my meal. I went with the Asian Style chicken on a bed of soba noodles.

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Asian Style Chicken with soba noodles

And my dad went with the Beef massaman curry.

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beef massaman curry

The salad with the sauce given was nice and tasty with a lovely zest from the Thai sauce.

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salad

My main course was the Asian Style Chicken with soba noodles. The noodles were really tasty and flavorful. The chicken was mostly good, a bit bland but still cooked through perfectly and was still even a little juicy. It was overall a really good main course.

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Asian Style Chicken with soba noodles

My dad had the Beef massaman curry. This was really really tasty. The spice, the richness of the flavor, and the cook was just stunning and I wish I could have eaten it in addition to my main course as mine was so good and the same went for my dad’s main course.

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Beef Massaman curry

The garlic bread was nice, warm, soft, and flavorful just like a garlic bread should be.

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Bread

And now, here is the highlight of the meal. Words cannot describe how good this was. This was the Thai coconut jelly and it was absolutely phenomenal. It was single-handedly the best airplane dessert I’ve had up until this point and beats out the previous winner in my books which was a really simple raspberry cheesecake I had on Etihad back in 2016. Yep! This is the new winner! But the coconut jelly was just so good and coconut-y and the mangoes added another dimension of sweetness I really enjoyed and all of that was beautifully contrasted with the sour and delicious raspberry coulis which was a great addition to it all. This was just really flavorful and I’m going to remember this one for a long time.

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Thai coconut jelly

And just to give you an idea of the texture, here’s a video of me cutting into it and eating it with everything else.

 

Overall, lunch was excellent. The salad was good, the main course was good, the garlic bread was good, and the dessert was simple, but out of the world on the flavor profile.

After lunch, our tray tables were cleared quickly and as the purser came and cleared trays, she asked everyone if they wanted anything to drink and offered hot drinks as well……but not me 🙁 . It’s not a big deal, she probably just forgot in all the commotion.

After lunch I went to use the restroom.

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Bathroom

It was honestly pretty standard and I wasn’t expecting too much, after all, it’s still just a 737.

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Creams

 

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soap

The rest of this flight is pretty much all views. My all-time favorite area to fly is in Southeast Asia during the monsoon season. The cloud formations and storms you fly around and through is just simply amazing to me and something that can’t be matched anywhere else.

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views
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view
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views
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view

The crew also offered some water which I gladly took. Always a good idea to keep sipping on water if nothing else on a flight, or else you’ll become dehydrated.

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water

 

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views
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view

Eventually, we began our descent to Kuala Lumpur around a storm that would grow stronger as the day went on and bite very very hard on my next flight.

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views
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storms
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views
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storms
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views

I also had a chance to quickly check out the in-flight entertainment, which honestly was alright.

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IFE

As of the time of this flight, the movies were pretty updated which I was happy about.

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movies

We finally got views of Kuala Lumpur coming out of the clouds.

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views
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view
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views

 

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views

And then our final approach into KUL. It’s worth noting that the airport is pretty much surrounded by jungle so on your final approach all you see is trees, more trees, and then some more trees.

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trees
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trees
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trees

Finally, we touched down into Kuala Lumpur.

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touchdown

 

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taxi

We pulled into our gate.

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view
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planes

Overall, this was a fantastic flight. The seat was great for this plane and this flight, the crew was great and very kind, the food was excellent, the views were excellent, and the In-flight entertainment would be sufficient for those who would use it. Honestly, what more is needed? Malaysia Airlines has lost a big step every since the MH370 incident and lost a lot of credibility but it sure left a great taste in my mouth on this flight. If they were star alliance, you can bet I’d be flying them a lot more after this. I use to fly them a lot before 2010 but with quicker routes to India developing from Los Angeles, I stopped flying them. If you are considering them on one of your flights in business class among other options, this is a great way to go.

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