Review: United Airlines (777-300) Business Class Beijing to San Francisco

Introduction: Whirlwind Trip to Asia
Review: American Airlines (A321) Economy Class Dallas to Charlotte
Review: American Airlines (A320) Economy Class Charlotte to Boston
Review: Holiday Inn Express and Suites – Boston Garden
Review: United Club – Logan International Airport
Review: United Airlines (777-200) Business Class Newark to Beijing
Review: Air China Business Class Lounge – Beijing International Airport
Review: BGS Premier Business Class Lounge – Beijing International Airport
Review: Singapore Airlines (777-300ER) Business Class Beijing to Singapore
Review: SilverKris Business Class Lounge – Singapore Changi Airport
Review: SilkAir (737-800) Business Class Singapore to Kuala Lumpur
Review: Renaissance Hotel – Kuala Lumpur
Out and About in Kuala Lumpur
Review: Plaza Premium Lounge – Kuala Lumpur
Review: SilkAir (A319) Economy Class Kuala Lumpur to Singapore
Review: JW Marriott Hotel – Singapore South Beach
Review: The Private Room – Singapore Changi Airport
Review: Singapore Airlines (A380-800) Suites Class Singapore to Beijing
Review: Air China First Class Lounge – Beijing International Airport
Review: United Airlines (777-300ER) Business Class Beijing to San Francisco
Review: American Express Centurion Lounge – San Francisco International Airport
Review: United Airlines (757-200) First Class San Francisco to Newark
Review: United Airlines Classified Restaurant – Newark Liberty International Airport
Review: Admirals Club – Logan International Airport

UA 889
PEK-SFO
Takeoff: 1725
Landing: 1405
Flight Time: 11hr 15min
Seat: 17L

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300

I left the lounge 15 minutes before boarding because I was over the hassles at Beijing airport. Boarding began on time with those passengers requiring special assistance and then passengers in Group 1.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Boarding

The boarding felt cramped and rushed. I bumped into pods all the way through the first and second business class cabin. I even hit my head on the overhead bins…twice. If they opened upwards there would be more space in the cabin.

United Airlines 777-300 Business Class
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Overhead Bins

As I looked at all of the seats, I could not help but think that they were small (I did fly Singapore Airlines business and first class in recent days). The same amenities were waiting at the seat…slippers, pillow, blanket, and mattress cover.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class IFE
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat Controls
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Slippers

Some chocolates and a menu were waiting as well.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat Storage
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Side Panel

The seat had a storage compartment that housed the headphones, amenity kit, and a bottle of water. This new business class seat reminded of All Nippon Airways’ Business Class seats, except newer. There was a ton of privacy.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Amenities
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Side Storage Mirror
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Rear Business Class Cabin
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Rear Business Class Cabin
United Airlines 777-300
tight entrance
United Airlines 777-300
Step to reach overhead bins???

One of the flight attendants, immediately came by to take drink orders and informed me that another would be coming through to take meal orders.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Menu
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Menu

On United you give two options for your main entree, in case the first option is out. My first option was the beef tenderloin and the second option was the steamed sea bass. After placing my order, I went to lavatory to change into pajamas.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Lavatory
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Lavatory Amenities
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Lavatory

The captain came on with the welcome announcement and informed us of an 11hr 10min flight which would put us at the gate 5 minutes early. After a bit of a wait, boarding was complete at 1715.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 787

Here is a short video of the cabin that I took during boarding:

We began our pushback three minutes late due to congestion at Beijing. The Air China tug was quickly removed from the aircraft and our taxi began. The safety video was played.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Safety Video

I looked around the cabin and saw this next to my head…come on man, I am not smelling your feet all the way to San Francisco.

United Airlines 777-300
Perfect example of what not to do

After a 19 minute taxi, that seemed like an eternity, we were airborne. The climb out was a bit bumpy.

United Airlines 777-300
Air China 777
United Airlines 777-300
Air China 737

United Airlines 777-300

United Airlines 777-300
Executive Jet Parking at Beijing
United Airlines 777-300
Thai 777
United Airlines 777-300
Thai 777

United Airlines 777-300

United Airlines 777-300
Views on takeoff from Beijing
United Airlines 777-300
Views on takeoff from Beijing
United Airlines 777-300
Views on takeoff from Beijing

Service began 27 minutes after departure with a hot towel. A few minutes later, tablecloths were set. It took another 15 minutes for the drink cart to come around.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Table Setting
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Table Setting
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Wine Cart
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Wine Cart

I was tempted to go with the wine flight again, but the Burgans Albarino was aboard so I went with it. The second drink rounds we made 20 minutes after that. At this point, I was fairly tired. The flight attendants were doing a great job, but my body had reached its limit. The days of nonstop traveling were catching up to me.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Wine and Warm Nuts

After another wait, the appetizer and salad  came. The smoked chicken was flavorful, while the salad (again) was pretty bad. It was inedible.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Starter

90 minutes into the flight my main entree arrived. I got my first option, the beef tenderloin, but it was way over cooked. The sweet potatoes were great and the asparagus was decent.

United Airlines 777-300 Business Class
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Beef Tenderloin
United Airlines 777-300
a little tough
United Airlines 777-300
a little overcooked

The cheese plate followed 20 minutes later. The cheese plate was not particularly appetizing. I do not like bleu cheese on anything, except a cheese plate. The dessert cart made it to me almost 30 minutes after the cheese plate. Dinner service was complete 2hrs 30 minutes after takeoff…far too long in my opinion. I am sure that it had to do with serving 50 business class passengers and the small aisles.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Cheese Plate
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Sundae

The cabin lights were then dimmed. I still had the sundae bowl on my table.

United Airlines 777-300
clean up in seat 17L

I used the intermittent WiFi (which I bought for $20) for few minutes. After not being able to get anything done on the internet, I powered my phone down. At this point, there were eight hours left to San Francisco. I decided to get some rest.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Seat

I slept off and on for six and a half hours. There was one instance where we encountered turbulence so bad that it woke me up. I took a quick trip to the lavatory and noticed the galley filled with snacks.

United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Snacks
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Snacks
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Snacks
United Airlines 777-300
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Wine

When I awoke, a flight attendant was passing out hot towels to begin the arrival service. I immediately went to the lavatory to change out of my pajamas.  The smaller lavatory on the right side between the two business class cabins was in disarray, so I went to the one on the opposite side. It was in better shape and larger.

When I came back to my seat, I found tablecloth draped over the side of my pod. Congee, fruit, and an omelet were the meal choices. I ordered the omelet.

The omelet, fruit, and chicken sausage were great, but the potatoes were soft and bland. Another thing that I like about the seat is that the tray table can be moved if you need to use the lavatory after your meal.

United Airlines 777-300 Business Class
United Airlines 777-300 Business Class Breakfast Omelet

30 minutes prior to landing, the first officer came on to announce that we would be beginning our initial descent into San Francisco. That began a mad rush to the lavatories.

After a bumpy touchdown, we had a 10 minute taxi to the gate.

Final Word

I was excited to fly United’s newest business class seat, but found this flight to be underwhelming. Maybe flying Singapore Airlines’ Suites Class a few hours earlier had influenced this flight. The flight attendants were nice and the seat were comfortable. I feel like United could have improved the seat spacing and the design of the overhead bins. Overall, it was a good way to return home after being in Asia for a few days.

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