[Airline Review] – Korean Air A330-300 (KE1229) – Economy Class, GMP-CJU (26 Oct 19)


Check-in counters for Korean Air is located on level 2 in Gimpo Domestic Airport. The airlines occupy counters 27 to 42 and are not difficult to locate. There are three lines at the airport for passengers: one for baggage drop for passengers who have completed online check-in or used one of the self check-in kiosks, one for Business Class passengers (the airlines termed their Business Class queue Sky Priority Prestige), and one for Economy Class passengers who have not performed any form of check-in. Since we have already done online check-in via the Korean Air mobile app, my friends and I headed for the baggage drop queue where there is hardly any queue. We were served promptly by the ground staff, who processed our baggage efficiently. The ground staff passed us our boarding passes (looks more like a receipt) and gave us details on the boarding time and departure time. Passengers with check-in baggage are required to wait at the counter for the baggage to pass through the x-ray machine before we can leave the counter.


Check-in counters for Korean Air occupies counters 27 to 45 in Gimpo Airport


Counters dedicated to passengers who have completed check-in


Self check-in kiosks shared by all the airlines operating out of Gimpo Airport, including Korean Air

The Aircraft

Korean Air uses a mix of A330-300 and B737-800 to ply between Gimpo and Jeju. For our flight between Gimpo and Jeju, Korean Air uses the A330-300 aircraft.


Korean Air A330-300 safety card

The Cabin

Korean Air A330-300 comes in two-class service: Prestige and Economy. There a total of 24 cacoon type Business Class seats that can be fully reclined into flatbed and 252 Economy Class seats segregated into two sections. The cabin is bright and the use of blue fabric on the Economy Class seats exudes a feeling of calmness. Seats in Economy Class are arranged in a 2-4-2 configuration.


Quick peek into the Business Class cabin as we walked through it


Economy Class Cabin onboard Korean Air A330-300

Lavatories for Korean Air A330-300 Economy Class passengers are located in the mid and aft part of the aircraft. The lavatory is basic but clean, thanks to the use of white colour on the walls that makes the lavatory look bigger than its actual size. The amenities in the Economy Class lavatory onboard Korean Air A330-300 is very basic with only tissues, hand soap and paper cups.

The Seat

The Economy Class seats onboard Korean Air A330-300 Economy Class shows signs of ageing with a hint of yellowish on the seats. All Economy Class seats come with a standard 32″ pitch, however as I was sitting at the bulkhead seat, I was treated with a seat pitch of 33″. All Economy Class seats measure 18″ wide and have seat recline of 118°. As this is a short domestic flight, no pillows or blankets are available in the Economy Class seats.


Economy Class seat onboard Korean Air A330-300


Legroom is very good at the bulkhead seat onboard Korean Air Economy Class

As I was seated at the bulkhead, the tray table is stowed in the armrest of the seat. The bi-fold tray table is large enough to cover the entire width of the seat. Seat pockets are installed on the bulkhead with the standard inflight shopping catalogue and Korean Air’s inhouse magazine – Morning Calm. The reading light is found on the ceiling of the seat.


Tray table for bulkhead seats are stowed in the armrest


Tray table can be used in folded mode


The tray table is quite large when fully deployed


Seat recline button in the Korean Air Economy Class seat


Reading light in Economy Class seat onboard Korean Air A330-300


Seat pocket contents are the only entertainment we have got for the flight

In-Flight Entertainment

Each seat in the Economy Class is equipped with a 10.6″ Personal TV, as I am sitting in the bulkhead seat, the TV is stowed at the side of the seat. Deploying the TV is a breeze with a press of a button and swivel the TV to the angle for viewing. the Inflight Entertainment (IFE) controller is found on the inner side of the sit. The controller looks old school and has some very easy to use buttons. On top of controlling the IFE, the call buttons and reading light buttons are also found on the IFE controller. On the back of the controller is where one can find a qwerty keyboard and some action buttons. I find these buttons are a tad too small to be useful. Despite being fitted a Personal TV, the entertainment system is not turned on for the 70 mins flight from Gimpo to Jeju. The other only entertainment might be the inflight radio channels which we were not able to listen to as no earphones are being provided. We can only rely on the inflight magazine as the only source of “entertainment”.


The personal TV being deployed


IFE controller is stored inside the seat


The front side of the tiny IFE controller


Back of the IFE controller

Beverage Service

As this is a short flight, Korean Air does not serve any food onboard. As soon as the seat belt sign was switched off, the stewardess went around serving drinks. We were given a choice of tomato juice, orange juice, Pepsi or plain water.


Passengers are served with a cup of drink during this flight


The service onboard Korean Air is good for a 70 min domestic flight. We were warmly greeted at the door by the cabin crew. The service rendered by the cabin crew in Economy Class was good. Cabin crews were seen with smiles constantly hanging on their faces, despite being a full flight. They were also seen helping passengers from stowing their carry-ons in the overhead storage bin to offering help to parents whose child spill water on herself. They were constantly checking with the parents if they need help. The crew was also seen checking with a mother if she needs help in calming her crying baby. The cabin crew in Economy Class offered a second round of drink upon seeing our cups are empty.


Friendly Cabin crew greeting passengers during boarding


Despite showing signs of ageing, the Korean Air A330-300 is sufficient for a short 70 mins domestic flight from Gimpo to Jeju. The seats are comfortable for a short-haul flight. Perhaps due to the short flight, the IFE was not turned on. The personal TV screen remained blank throughout the entire flight. The crew onboard offered good service despite being a short and full flight in the Economy Class.


Korean Air A330-300 flying over South Korea


Korean Air A330-300 flying over the sea heading to Jeju

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