Matt Brown flies aboard Emirates EK76 from Paris to Dubai.


Emirates A380.

Class: Business.


Luggage: 40kg plus 7kg hand luggage.

Check in: Charles de Gaulle airport can be chaotic but travelling in Business Class there were only two people ahead of me at the Emirates check in and I quickly passed through immigration to the departure lounge.

Airport experience: In Business Class you get access to th fantastic Emirates Lounge in Paris, where they serve fabulous French wine and food. The best of the reds, a Lacoste Borie Pauillac 2008 Bordeaux, hit the nose. I bumped into a couple of Kiwis, former Manawatu Ranfurly Shield-winner Mark Thompson who co-founded Eftpos in New Zealand and his wife Debbie, who were great company.

With three flights a day from Paris to Dubai, leaving in the morning, afternoon and at night, the lounge is never jam-packed and there is plenty of space to relax.

Flight time: Six hours and five minutes and we departed 10 minutes behind schedule at 10pm. We arrived at the terminal in Dubai a few minutes late at 6.15am.

Seat: 11k is near the front of the Business Class section on the upper deck of the plane.

From what I have experienced rows A and K (window seats) are the best with more space and privacy than the middle seats. After take-off I checked out the bar at the back of the plane, which was empty as most passengers opted to try to get to sleep quickly on the relatively short-haul overnight flight to Dubai. The lure of the Clos du Marquis 2008, Saint-Julien red ensured I stayed in the bar for a while before returning to my seat for a light meal.

Entertainment: On this flight I was simply too tired to watch a movie, but for those insomniacs there are hundreds of films, TV shows, documentaries and thousands of songs to choose from in the state of the art ICE entertainment system.


Food and drink: I chose to stick with the above mentioned Bordeaux red for my meal. As I had eaten earlier in the lounge, I opted against having a starter, where there was a choice of a celery soup, smoked chicken or smoked salmon. For the main course I chose the chicken biryani, which was a good size and tasty. I skipped dessert, the cheese board and coffee, although couldn't resist asking for the Emirates special, the Godiva chocolates.

Service: Pretty good. They provided a mattress over the seat for sleeping and soon after my meal I put the seat into the lie-flat position and dozed for the remainder of the flight.

Fellow passengers: Mainly French and other Europeans heading to the Middle East and beyond for business.

Verdict: A comfortable flight that is almost not long enough for overnight travel. I woke up after three hours' sleep, which left me in a daze for my four-hour transit at Dubai airport. I actually prefer the longer overnight flights in Business Class.