Click the video above to see the flagship Malaysia Airlines A380 First Class reviewed on a flight from London Heathrow to Kuala Lumpur International Airport.
Malaysia Airlines have invested heavily in their new first class cabins to match their new shiny A380 aircraft – have they succeeded in offering a world-beating first class service?
Malaysia Airlines A380 First Class Cabin
Initial impressions are great – this is a fantastic place to spend the day as you cross continents. Each suite is massive, with a wide seat that turns in to an even wider bed thanks to some electronic wizardry that lowers your cupboard and arm rests.
There’s only 8 seats and no overhead bins (the attentive crew will stow and fetch your bags whenever you need them) so there is a sense of space and peacefulness. You’re also a long way from the engines, which makes things even quieter!
The suites don’t have doors so there’s not as much privacy as say on Jet Airways, but each suite is staggered so there’s not a huge amount of difference.
Malaysia Airlines First Class Check-In Experience
We took the Heathrow Express train from London Paddington to Heathrow Terminal 4; the trip took about 25 minutes and cost $50 per person. Add in the hassle of a change at Heathrow Central station as well, and we’d recommend you take an Uber car instead.
Heathrow Terminal 4 used to be a run-down terminal that was full of red plastic furniture; an expensive refurbishment in recent years has transformed the place and is just as good as its neighbors. There was quite a queue to check-in at the First Class counter, but within a few seconds we were approached by a Malaysia Airlines staff member who took our passports and returned a minute later with our boarding passes – great service.
Heathrow Terminal 4 has a private fast-track security setup that meant we were airside in just a couple of minutes. After a short stop in the outside smoking area, we made our way to the Malaysia Airlines First Class lounge.
MAS don’t have a large number of first class passengers (with two daily A380 flights) but this lounge was surprisingly good and is one of the best at Heathrow. There was a bar with a good range of drinks, a self-serve deli counter, and efficient waiter service delivering more substantial meals as well.
The lounge had a great view of our plane being prepared at the next door gate, and we headed off to use the private jetbridge for A380 first class passengers as soon as boarding was called.
Onboard the Malaysia Airlines A380 First Class
First impressions are great, with a feeling of understated elegance. There’s no gold bling, suite doors or personal mini-bars but it doesn’t feel cheap. Instead, first class on this A380 gives you something missing from most flight experiences – space. There’s no overhead lockers so there’s a disconcerting amount of headroom, and each first class suite is a solid rectangular slab that maximises your personal space.
Unlike British Airways A380 first class, each seat faces forward and there’s no overlap between your feet and the next passenger. This means your seat is seriously wide, and the bed is even wider – whizzy electronics lower your personal storage area when you press the button to convert your seat in to a flat bed, and the eager crew put a mattress on top so you have a bed with no compromises.
Each suite also comes with a personal locker, and so many goodies they give you a special Malaysia Airlines A380 First Class branded bag to carry them in! You get an amenity kit filled with Bulgari goodies, slippers and pyjamas too. There’s a huge TV that covers the end of your suite with a choice of external live cameras as well as the usual maps and movies.
There’s so much space, you can invite a friend to hang out with you – a second seatbelt is provided at the other end of the suite in case of turbulence! The seats are so wide, you can put your feet up to the side of your companion, making it a nice place to hang out and relax as you fly over the continents on this 13 hour flight.
Malaysia Airlines A380 First Class Food & Drink
We were looking forward to starting our flight in style – and were left disappointed when we were told that no alcohol is served before take off to first class passengers. This penny-pinching is a shame at airports like Heathrow, where you have to wait for quite a while for all the other passengers to board & wait for a take-off slot.
Things did improve when we were up in the air. The crew quickly brought out some champagne flutes and started serving Dom Pérignon 2002 at our seat as well as providing some nuts. A very pleasant way to start a flight & peruse the large menu for the rest of the flight.
It’s possible to order food in advance from a larger menu online, but there was plenty of choice for people choosing on the day. Like all good Malaysians, MAS have not held back when it comes to serving food to their guests! A trolley comes round with Malaysia Airlines’ signature satay service, where you can choose from chicken and beef skewers and a selection of accompaniments.
Then it’s time for the starters proper – including a choice between prawns, scallops and caviar. Feeling hungry? The crew will happily let you as order as much as you like, and a cheeky second serving of caviar & smoked salmon may have come our way…
Overall, the food was good quality and prepared carefully by the crew. It’s worth booking something in advance online to take advantage of the wider choice from the ‘Chef On Call’ service, especially as you should have no problems switching to something from the menu on the day if you prefer.
A full breakfast service was offered before we landed in Kuala Lumpur, but as even the best airline food can’t match a nice meal on the ground we declined and focussed on sleep.
Best Seats in Malaysia Airlines A380 First Class
The window seats offer fantastic views on this route, and as there’s space for two people in each suite you may wish to consider them even if you’re a couple. Otherwise, the center two seats have a divider that can be lowered and are probably best for couples as you can be next to each other for take-off and landing.
Seats in the first row are a little quieter than the second row as you’re further from the busy galley and the engines.
Malaysia Airlines A380 First Class Conclusions
Malaysia Airlines have succeeded in making their A380 First Class one of the best in the world, and we have very few reservations about recommending them. As a member of Oneworld, American Airlines and British Airways frequent fliers can collect miles by flying Malaysia Airlines, and it’s certainly a superior experience to these carriers.
Superb food and drink options along with a brilliant bed & seat make Malaysia Airlines A380 first class the very best way to travel between London and Kuala Lumpur.
Want another Malaysia Airlines A380 First Class review?
For another review of Malaysia Airlines First Class on the A380, click here.
Want to see Malaysia Airlines business class reviewed?
For a review of Malaysia Airlines’ regional business class reviewed, click here.