I fly regularly between Shanghai and Beijing and I find increasingly that Air China is using leased Dragonair Airbus aircraft on the route. This is fine by me, although it is a little disorienting to hear the captain of an Air China flight telling me (in an Australian accent) what his full name is (as opposed to the usual ‘Captain Zhang’), plus useful and believable information on why delays occur and which precise runway we will be using for landing and takeoff.
But the real disorientation is related to ice cream. When I fly to Hong Kong, it is on Dragonair, and I confess the main reason is that Haagen-Daaz ice cream is served. I don’t usually eat ice cream, but I am addicted to the experience of eating Belgian chocolate ice cream on Dragonair flights. As long as it is renting Dragonair planes and flight crews, Air China could consider easing the pain and providing proper ice cream. The meals currently provided suggest there should be some money left in the budget for such a non-extravagence.