✈ Airlines | StarLux

Ah the day flight schedule! You lose a day at both ends, but you gain a view of . . . maybe something somewhere out the window. :grin:

Guy

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Just back from our holiday to Tokyo flying economy with Starlux, not too bad and between them and Eva we don’t have a clear favourite.

I have the Starlux credit card which let us check in both ways at the business counter (much needed when flying with two under 4 years). First flight was ok. Cabin crew seemed fairly fresh as the introduction to flying with a lap infant wasn’t the clearest and they had to search the toilets to find the one with a changing table. Food was good and entertainment had enough for us and the oldest. Return flight crew were much better, service and food was as good as earlier.

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An extended discussion, from Taiwan Plus, on how Taiwan is bucking the global trend with three full cost airlines.

Guy

All charging top dollars!

I need to fly back to Taipei from HCM city in July. I was disappointed this is not a route starlux offered because I would have loved to try them.

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I guess just a matter of time. Their regional J class is very nice

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Starlux has also posted that they’ve finally reached profitability in 2023. It seems their bet on luxury is working.

Global luxury industry is booming and it’s something I keep hitting on with my clients when I talk about the subject on social media. People crave luxury and this is true for the beauty industry for salons. People want a luxury experience right now.

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Your take is consistent with some of the commentary (not all) in the Taiwan Plus video linked above. Business travel, overall, is down, and leisure travel is up—but within the leisure segment is a group of people who want a special experience, not just being grimly packed into a cattle car. And for those people, Starlux could have some appeal.

Guy

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I’ve taken Starlux on a few short-haul routes within Asia in the past year (in economy). My take is that they’re fine, but not worth the premium they charge over even EVA and China Airlines. They’ve done an incredible job with the marketing, positioning themselves as the most premium carrier from Taiwan. The reality, in economy at least, is that they run a much less polished operation and do little to differentiate themselves.

Legroom on their A321neos are abysmal, and they even charge for seat assignment. I didn’t have a bad experience per se, but they offered no competitive advantage whatsoever. I would only take them again if they were somehow cheaper than the other “full service” competitors, which I have yet to come across.

Anecdotally, on my last flight with them from KUL the cabin was so hot. I thought it might have just been me, but I still I asked the flight attendant if they could turn the temperature down a bit. After I said that, a bunch of people near me spoke up and said they felt super hot too. Maybe the flight attendant did something, but I didn’t feel a difference. I got off in Taoyuan super sweaty.

On another flight, when they came around offering drinks I asked to try their “signature cocktail”, which they said they only offer later in the flight. It was never offered later, so I never got to try it…

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Very helpful.

How was the food?

Guy

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The food was alright! Again though, in my opinion it was the same stuff you get on China Airlines or EVA.

Got it.

Most people I know would not describe the food on CI as “alright” even as that big state carrier has made other improvements with their safety record and their lovely newish A350 aircraft . . .

EVA I think has gotten better over the years, although I still find much of the operation of that company robotic and (aside from their excellent safety record so far) frankly unimpressive.

I am still waiting to try Starlux . . .

Guy

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In my amateur opinion the big opportunity for Starlux would be to offer warmer, more personalized service (something that carriers like Garuda Indonesia used to be famous for). I don’t have any actual insight into the financials of Starlux but they appear to be doing well, having weathered the pandemic. They operate in a lot of lucrative markets, at least for now.

However, I’m not sure if there’s really a place for 3 big full-service carriers at TPE long-term. Starlux will have to materially differentiate themselves from the legacy carriers if they want to last, in my view. At the moment, it seems like their marketing is succeeding at that. The product does not.

I wish they would send their marketing ppl to BR, they r doing a stellar job indeed.

Yep, completely agree, that was my experience too.

got lucky to get an “upgrade” to the bulk seats on my NGOTPE flight, I was comfy in Y.

BR does the same unless you are a Silver (for standard seats)/Gold-diamond (for preferred and extra legroom seat) member. That’s so unkind given the amount of money to pay for the tickets.

agree here too, had 2 flights on JX so far, u can see my experiences document up in this very thread.

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Starlux also doesn’t go to Seoul? I need to go there from Taipei

Not yet

Taipei to Seoul is an absurdly competitive route with 10 airlines serving TPE/TSA - ICN/GMP alone. Personally I don’t see Starlux entering that market any time soon…

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