Trip Report: Business Class on EVA Airlines Bad Badtz Maru Sanrio plane Fukuoka – Taipei


Pros
  • Cuteness Kawaiiiiii-overload!
  • Din Tai Fung onboard
  • Did you read what I just wrote? I said "Din Tai F&#@ing Fung onboard!"
  • Super friendly staff
  • Great lounges with hot food and pour-it-yourself liquor
Cons
  • Honestly, none. 

 

How I did it

I bought an open-jaw ticket (Taipei - Tokyo Narita, Fukuoka - Taipei) on EVA's website with my Amex card for USD$865 per person, so this half effectively cost $433. It would have been nice to somehow integrate this with our NYC–Taipei reward flight, but it was impossible for me to construct that routing on United.com (where all of my points for this flight were). To be fair, the itinerary we wanted was a bit strange (12 hour layover in Taipei inbound to have lunch with a friend, 3 day layover on the way back to hang out in Taipei), plus I absolutely positively had to be on a Sanrio character plane so I coughed up the cash. I credited the flight to my United account, where this leg earned 1695 miles (≈$33) in addition to the 1300 Amex miles earned purchasing this leg (≈$26).

 

Lounges

The lounge in Fukuoka was surprisingly nice, given that it's a regional airport and this is a short, 2½ hour flight. There's some good souvenir shopping in the terminal, including Royce chocolate-covered potato chips and all kinds of various Kit-Kats.

Hot entrees (curry rice and yakisoba omelettes)

Beverage and snacks
Telephone privacy rooms
Lounge seating area

 

The flight

I think we were the only Business Class passengers who were actually excited about being aboard a Sanrio plane – most everyone else seemed to view it as a mild curiosity/annoyance. The flight attendants seemed genuinely happy that we were enjoying it so much. On both our Sanrio flights they loaded us down with all kinds of fun swag to take home with us.

Not to deconstruct the magic too much here, but aside from the plane's livery, several things get the Sanrio makeover: the boarding pass, the FA uniforms and badges, the safety info card and video, the slippers, pillow covers, barf "comfort" bags, tray and drink mats, drink stirring sticks and cocktail napkins, pens and playing cards, and the in-flight entertainment system. In the Taipei airport, they even have a special Hello Kitty-branded check in area.

Badtz Maru livery

Badtz Maru livery

Sanrio boarding pass


Branded pillows and slippers


Branded pillows and slippers


Even the barf bags and the safety cards are custom!

Sanrio safety video
Yay for swag!

Food

Service begins with sparkling wine and hot towels. As I mentioned in the intro, they serve Din Tai Fung onboard, so while there were other choices on the menu, I wasn't going to pick them. I had the Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup, and it came with crab and asparagus in XO sauce, chicken marinated in Shaoxing wine, pickles, and steamed taro buns for dessert.

My husband opted for the Japanese menu which was a lot like a bento box – a dozen little interesting seasonal things all on the plate. Both our meals were tasty… but not "I'd happily pay to eat this on the ground" tasty.

Even the cocktail napkins have Badtz Maru



Din Tai Fung!


Steamed taro buns for dessert



Japanese meal

Signature cocktail and mochi for dessert

The tray liner, toothpick, and chopstick sleeve

Menus

Cover
Chinese menu (click to enlarge)
Japanese menu (click to enlarge)
soft drink menu (click to enlarge)
alcohol menu (click to enlarge)
Western menu (click to enlarge)

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