Starlux Airways: First have a look at premium financial system, financial system cabins on the Airbus A350

Editors’ word: Starlux offered TPG with a free round-trip business-class ticket for the inaugural U.S. route. All opinions expressed listed here are the creator’s alone and weren’t topic to evaluation by Starlux.

You might have by no means heard of Starlux Airways earlier than, however after looking on the cabins on the service’s brand-new jet, chances are you’ll wish to give them a strive.

Starlux is a Taiwanese luxurious airline that desires to change into “the Emirates of Taiwan.” The service began flying intra-Asia routes in January 2020, but it surely paused its bold progress technique as soon as the pandemic hit just a few weeks later.


Quick ahead to right now, when the service launched into its largest growth but — service to North America, and Los Angeles specifically.

Starlux now flies between Los Angeles Worldwide Airport (LAX) and Taoyuan Worldwide Airport (TPE) utilizing the 306-seat Airbus A350-900, with onward connections out there to 16 widespread locations inside Asia, together with Bangkok and Singapore. The airline plans so as to add San Francisco service later this yr, with extra routes to the U.S. “coming quickly.”


What units Starlux aside is the onboard expertise. It is the one Taiwanese service to supply a long-haul first-class cabin, and it additionally presents a top-notch new business-class suite that rivals among the world’s greatest airways — belief me, I simply flew it on Starlux’s inaugural U.S. departure.

What concerning the onboard expertise at the back of the airplane, although? Nicely, I had the chance to tour the jet earlier than departing from L.A., and also you’re positive to love what you see.

Premium financial system on Starlux Airways’ Airbus A350

Starlux presents a premium financial system cabin on its Airbus A350 fleet, which is primarily deployed on long-haul missions.

The 36-seat cabin is configured in a 2-4-2 association unfold throughout 5 rows.

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{Couples} ought to undoubtedly select seats alongside the home windows, whereas these touring as teams of three or extra might favor sitting within the middle part.

I think about the center seats would be the final ones to be reserved, so beware for those who’re reserving near departure.

That mentioned, the seats appeared fairly comfy, providing 40 inches of pitch and beneficiant recline. (That is 2 extra inches of pitch than Delta presents in Premium Choose on its Airbus A350 — a really noticeable distinction.)

The six-way adjustable headrest, mixed with the retractable legrest and footrest, ought to make it simpler to get comfy at evening. In truth, I appreciated that each single seat in premium financial system featured a legrest and footrest — on some airways, the footrest is reserved for the bulkhead seat solely.

Talking of the bulkhead, I would take into account avoiding a seat within the first row of the cabin (Row 20). That is as a result of the leisure monitor is constructed into the wall in entrance of you, making it a lot more durable to observe your content material at a cushty viewing angle.

The benefits to the bulkhead are that nobody reclines into your house and that you simply take pleasure in a bit extra room round your toes.

Other than the bulkhead, the remainder of the premium financial system recliners are created equally — there are not any lacking home windows on this cabin.

I used to be fairly impressed with the design of the premium financial system cabin. The temper lighting, the earthy tones on every seat and the gold-colored seatbelt — the service did an awesome job making the cabin really feel homey and alluring.

Every seat contains a bi-fold faux-wood tray desk that is saved within the middle armrest. Measuring 16 inches extensive and 10 inches lengthy, it is definitely large enough to carry a laptop computer or iPad, or a whole meal tray.

I used to be impressed with the 15.6-inch seatback leisure screens that Starlux put in. Other than the crisp 4K image high quality, additionally they function Bluetooth connectivity, so you’ll be able to join your AirPods or different wi-fi headphones and not using a dongle.


You’ll be able to management these screens together with your finger or with a retractable distant constructed into every armrest.

When it comes to energy and connectivity, there is a common AC outlet, 60-watt USB-C charging port and an ordinary USB-A port at every seat. These ports are between every seat within the middle console, so you should have no points with wires going throughout your seat.

Starlux’s A350s function Inmarsat GX Aviation-powered satellite tv for pc Wi-Fi. Premium financial system and financial system flyers can entry a free messaging plan, with usage-based web packages beginning at $4 for 30 megabytes.

With pricing based mostly on utilization, anticipate your Wi-Fi invoice to rack up for those who’re making an attempt to remain linked to data-intensive web sites or functions when flying in premium financial system or coach.

The one factor that the premium financial system cabin lacks is ample storage. In fact, there are overhead bins, however except for the water bottle holder and the massive literature pocket, you will not discover a lot room to maintain your belongings at your seat.


Along with the recliners, premium financial system passengers take pleasure in elevated meals and beverage choices, a small amenity equipment and a extra luxurious pillow and blanket.

There’s one devoted premium financial system toilet situated on the entrance of the cabin on the starboard aspect. It is lined with a big mirror and a Starlux design motif, giving it a extra spacious and fashionable really feel.


Spherical-trip fares from L.A. to Taipei begin at round $2,400 in premium financial system and $1,500 in financial system.

I do not essentially assume that premium financial system is value an almost $1,000 buy-up, however you can as an alternative redeem Alaska Airways Mileage Plan miles for the ticket at a profitable introduction fee of 40,000 miles every approach.

Financial system on Starlux Airways’ Airbus A350

The 240 economy-class seats on Starlux’s Airbus A350 are organized in a two-cabin configuration.

The ahead cabin spans rows 30 to 41, whereas the aft cabin goes from rows 50 to 69. The cabins are almost an identical, with all seats organized in a 3-3-3 structure. There are not any lacking home windows in both cabin.

That mentioned, I would keep away from sitting in the previous few rows of the airplane (from rows 65 to 69), because the curvature of the airplane implies that the seats alongside the window will not have as a lot shoulder room. Additionally, the crew relaxation is above this part of seats, so the ceiling is not as tall and there are no overhead bins right here.


Additionally, the bulkhead and exit row seats are designated as further legroom, and the airline costs no less than $160 extra to order them.


Observe that Starlux sells rows 32 by way of 37 as “ahead” seats, and it prices $70 or extra to order these — a buy-up that is possible not value it.


Most financial system seats measure 17 1/2 inches extensive and provide between 31 and 32 inches of pitch — fairly customary for many full-service worldwide airways. The exit row and bulkhead provide tons extra legroom, however the proximity to the toilets and galleys could also be bothersome.


The financial system seats are just about an off-the-shelf model of Recaro’s widespread economy-class product, although Starlux added just a few bells and whistles to make the flight expertise extra comfy. (It is value noting that these aren’t slimline seats such as you’d discover on a no-frills airline.)


This features a six-way adjustable headrest that ought to assist cradle your neck when it is time to loosen up or sleep.


Moreover, every seat sports activities a built-in cupholder and system stand that is the proper place to maintain AirPods or your free cables through the flight.


Every seat is supplied with a 13-inch 4K high-definition leisure display screen that additionally options Bluetooth connectivity for pairing wi-fi headphones.


There are two common AC shops and two 60-watt USB-C charging ports for each three financial system seats.

If everybody in your row must cost their system, you will, sadly, want to modify off together with your seatmates until you utilize the non-public USB-A charging port underneath your leisure display screen.


The bi-fold tray desk pops out of the seat in entrance of you, and it measures 15 inches extensive and 10 inches lengthy.


There are six toilets for the 240 coach passengers — 4 are situated between the 2 financial system cabins and two are situated within the again galley.


Starlux’s A350 can be the primary of its variety to function dimmable home windows. This somewhat-controversial function first debuted on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, and a few flyers like it, and others hate it.


Personally, I favor this new Airbus window to Boeing’s current providing. The dimming operate occurs a lot faster, and I discovered the slider management to be extra intuitive.


The financial system cabin is designed with related beige, gold and grey motifs because the premium financial system cabin, so it also needs to really feel fairly stress-free and welcoming when you step inside.

Backside line

Starlux is the most recent service flying to the U.S., and it is one which ought to be in your radar, particularly with its ambition to change into one of many world’s greatest airways.

Premium financial system flyers will take pleasure in no less than 8 inches of extra pitch and wider, extra comfy seats than the usual coach providing. That, mixed with the elevated onboard service, ought to make the premium financial system expertise really feel loads nearer to enterprise class than to financial system.


Sadly, Starlux’s introductory premium financial system fares are almost $1,000 greater than coach, so until you are redeeming Alaska miles, it might not make sense to splurge for the improve.

In the event you do find yourself sitting in financial system, no less than the expertise ought to be higher than what you would possibly anticipate from different new airline startups. From high-tech seatback screens to a spread of energy and connectivity choices, you will keep entertained and filled with juice all through your flight.

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