Winston Aldworth flies TN101 from French Polynesia to New Zealand.
The plane: An Airbus A340-300. They're likely to bring a Dreamliner in on this route by 2018. First thing I noticed when I stepped aboard was fake wooden panelling on the floor in the galley - I liked it. Very homely. Another cool touch: prints of Paul Gauguin paintings at the rear of each cabin section.
My seat: 3K, an aisle seat, my partner was in 3L. On the flight over, we were in the very front row, 2K and 2L. Those bulkhead spots had extra legroom (even by the generous standard of this Business Class set-up), but it meant the TV screen was a bit further away. It's a very comfortable angle-flat seat (53" pitch and 20.5" width). Superb for a lie-down. Everyone on the flight got a free set of pyjamas - the airline is hoping we'll post photos of ourselves in the PJs on social media.
Price: Return fares start from $1025 (Economy) or $2590 (Business). They fly three times a week.
Entertainment: High-quality screens, hampered by a limited range of 16 movies. I got through Ben Affleck's crime caper The Town - a poor man's Heat. With a good selection of music, I settled in for some serious jazz-listening (looks over shoulder, points to camera, winks and mutters "all right") and read the Economist. Smug git, yeah?
How full: About two-thirds full throughout the plane going both ways. There are 30 seats in Business, 264 in Economy.
Fellow passengers: About half of them were staying on all the way to Sydney. This flight is the only connection between Australia and Tahiti, though Air New Zealand also flies twice a week from Auckland with a 767.
Food and drink: Departing Papeete at 7.50am, there was just one meal service, I went for the scrambled eggs, which were functional more than fabulous. Gamely, we tried the pre-takeoff rum punch, but were quickly beaten back and switched to coffee.
On the flight over from Auckland, which departed at 3.20pm, we made merry with the broad selection of French wines. There was a Cuba libre, a kir royale and a beer in there, too (go for the Tahitian Hinano - good drop). The dinner on that flight over was quite fabulous: raw tuna with cream cheese, prawns and scallops for the entree, orange roughy for me and chicken linguine for her. An airborne triumph.
Service: First rate. Between the "ia oranas" and the "bonjours", the mix of Polynesian warmth and Gallic class is a hit. I like these guys.
Toilets: Business Class loos are same size as Economy's.
Airport experience: The Tahiti Nui lounge at Papeete came as a welcome respite after our early morning dash to get to the airport. Save your souvenir shopping for after security; the shop there is well kitted-out.
Would I fly this again? Oui.
The writer travelled courtesy of Air Tahiti Nui.