ANA's modified Dreamliner livery with the "787" on the side. Photo by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren.

An ANA 787-8 – Photo: Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren | JDLMultimedia

When two AirlineReporter writers decide to go on a weekend guys trip, the possibilities are endless. The thing is – we don’t mind long flights, crazy routing, or extended layovers – after all, that’s all part of the adventure.

It’s amazing how much ground you can cover in a few days, if you really want to. Once we made the decision to go somewhere, Associate Editor, Blaine Nickeson, and I spent a few weeks scouring the internet for decent airfares.  We considered various destinations across five continents.  Finally, something really interesting (and cheap!) popped up: Denver to Tokyo on United’s 787-8 connecting on to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on ANA’s 787-8.

One stop from Denver to a city nearly on the other side of the world?  Oh yeah, this is the kind of stuff the Dreamliner was built for.

 

An Air France A380 parked at SFO. Photo: John Nguyen | AirlineReporter

Our Air France A380 parked at SFO. Photo: John Nguyen | AirlineReporter

Thanks to Delta, I found a smashing deal to fly an Airbus A380 for the first time, and not in economy! My wife and I were married late last year, but postponed our honeymoon because we wanted to visit Europe during the warmer months.

We lucked out and found a very low fare valid for this past September, from San Francisco to Istanbul, in the Premium Economy section of Delta partner Air France. This would be our first time flying the A380, as well as the first time in decades flying on Air France. I was cautiously optimistic about what flying Premium Economy would be like, and I subscribed to the mantra of, “anything’s better than coach,” or even my flight on a CRJ-200 the day before.

Would I be severely disappointed?

Cathay Pacific has unveiled their new livery - Photo: Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter

Cathay Pacific has unveiled their new livery – Photo: Bernie Leighton | AirlineReporter

Though there have been clues for over a year as to what Cathay Pacific was doing with their rebranding, it didn’t become fully clear until they recently unveiled it (including a new livery) in Hong Kong.
The previous hints were namely removing red from the boarding passes, corporate letterheads, and other places where customers may see the trademark “brushwing.”

There were even numerous rumors last year that a new livery was coming soon. That turned out not to be the case, but quite a bit of work was going on behind the scenes on the rebranding effort. Now, the world gets to see what Cathay has done to their aircraft.

The first Boeing 727 sitting at Paine Field

The first Boeing 727 sitting at Paine Field

Back in August, we connected with some of the fine folks that have been working to prepare the first Boeing 727 for its last flight. At the time, they were painting the plane and it looked damn good. Although a new coat of paint will make the plane look slick, it doesn’t exactly get it airborne. What does? Engines, of course.

Classic first class seats in the first Boeing 727

Classic first class seats in the first Boeing 727

I heard that they took possession of a few Pratt & Whittney JT8D engines and I wanted to get an update on how things were going and also take a tour of the interior.

When the aircraft was donated to the Museum of Flight, it was almost fully restored to how it looked (inside and out), when it first flew for United Airlines. So, I headed to the Museum of Flight Restoration Center at Paine Field and see how things were progressing.