We’re not often impressed by airline customer service in economy class.
But paying the equivalent of only $900 USD per ticket for return EVA Air flights from North America on a couple of trips to Asia turned out to be a bargain.
And it was a pleasant flying experience to boot!
Writing this EVA Air review therefore wasn’t as difficult as we thought it might be.
EVA Air review: About the airline
The “official” name for EVA Air is EVA Airways Corporation. The airline is also sometimes called EVA Airlines.
EVA Air is based in Taiwan. It was founded in 1989.
They fly to more than 20 countries around the world, including the United States, Canada, the U.K., Singapore, the Philippines, Japan, Italy and Australia.
EVA Air flights from North America
Let’s start our review of EVA Air with the airline’s flights to and from North America.
EVA Air offers non-stop service to Taipei, Taiwan, from several cities in North America, including Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Toronto and Vancouver.
They operate many flights a week from some cities. For example, there are at least seven flights a week from both L.A. and San Francisco to Taipei.
From Taipei, you can then connect to scads of cities in Asia.
Since we live in Victoria, Canada, we’ll focus on the departure cities closest to us – Seattle and Vancouver.
EVA Air Seattle to Taipei
EVA Air has several flights a week departing from Seattle.
Until recently, the planes used for the Seattle to Taipei flights were Boeing 777-300ERs.
In 2021, however, the airline started using the new Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner for flying between Seattle and Taipei.
EVA Air Vancouver to Taipei
On our first EVA Air flight, we flew from Vancouver via Taipei, Taiwan, to Bali.
Our second EVA Air trip was from Vancouver to Bangkok, also via Taipei. (From Bangkok, we flew on to Yangon, Myanmar.)
The EVA Air planes currently used for most Vancouver to Taipei flights are Boeing 777-300ERs.
The airline was using Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners for a “trial” period for a while. But they’ve since swapped back to using the 777-300ER.
However, we understand EVA Air is banking on the Dreamliner in its future plans. (And it has lots of Dreamliners on order.) So the Dreamliner could be used in future for the Vancouver to Taiwan flights.
EVA Air Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner review
The airline has configured its Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners to carry 304 passengers, with 26 in Royal Laurel (Business) Class and 278 in Economy Class.
What’s especially nice about these EVA Air planes is that the Economy seats are ergonomically designed and feature upgraded 12-inch HD touchscreen TV screens.
The Dreamliners also boast quieter cabins and cleaner air (with a higher concentration of oxygen, which helps you feel less tired).
EVA Air Boeing 777-300ER review
The Boeing 777-300ER aircraft (used for the Vancouver-Taiwan flights) has a capacity of 323 passengers across all three classes: 38 seats in Royal Laurel Class, 64 seats in Premium Economy Class and 221 in Economy Class.
Premium Economy, you say?
Yes, what’s nice about this particular aircraft is that it has a Premium Economy Class. (We review Premium Economy later on in this post.)
EVA Airways review: Check-in
It started with the ginger tea…
Both times, while waiting at the gate in Vancouver, EVA Air had a table (adorned with a large vase of fresh lilies) set up with complimentary, help-yourself, hot ginger tea and coffee.
That’s the first time we’ve ever seen this service offered.
Other airlines, take note!
Hey, we got slippers!
Okay, so we didn’t get the really nice EVA Air amenities you get in EVA Air’s Business Class.
There, you’re treated to Salvatore Ferragamo amenity kits and comfy pyjamas by Taiwanese-Canadian designer, Jason Wu.
But as we settled into our seats, we discovered green disposable slippers (a really nice touch for Economy Class!), down cushions with washable cotton (not synthetic disposable) covers, and thick blankets that don’t create annoying static.
The sleep masks you get in Economy aren’t very good though.
EVA Air Economy seats
EVA Air legroom
Boeing 777-300ER legroom
The seat pitch on the Boeing 777-300ERs is between 32 and 33 inches.
(Seat pitch is the term used to measure the distance from the back of your seat to the back of the seat in front, i.e., a technical airline term for how much legroom you get.)
Basically, this means you get 32 to 33 inches of legroom.
We liked that the seat configuration was 3-3-3 on our flights.
Some of EVA Air’s 777 planes have extra Economy seats, however, and they’re configured 3-4-3, with four (not three) seats in the middle row. (See here for details of the different EVA Air plane configurations.)
That means a tighter fit. Too bad…
We hear that at least one North American carrier has reconfigured their 777s on their Asia routes to squeeze in over 100 additional seats in Economy, so Economy passengers are stuffed in like sardines.
And on Rouge (Air Canada’s leisure brand), the seat pitch is only 30 inches for European flights that we checked. No thank you…
Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner legroom
Interestingly, the Economy Class seats on the new Dreamliners have less legroom than on the Boeing 777s. Their seat pitch is 31 to 32 inches.
And it’s surprising how much difference an extra inch can make!
But there are only nine seats in a row (not ten), configured 3-3-3.
Best economy seats on EVA Air
When selecting your seats, check SeatGuru.
We have to mention the loos in our EVA Airlines review.
They’re set far apart from the food preparation galley areas. And they’re kitted out with hand lotion as well as foaming soap (so your hands won’t dry out on the plane).
The larger loos in the economy cabin got us smiling with cute vases of flowers and baby change areas too.
As well, we noticed that the flight attendants freshened the toilets constantly and kept them spotlessly clean.
This is in contrast to flight attendants on U.S. and Canadian carriers, who won’t deal with any lavatory freshening.
EVA Air food
Is EVA Airlines good in the food department?
The EVA Air meals in Economy Class on our flights were nutritionally balanced and fairly healthy (as airplane meals go).
For dinner – a choice of fish and noodles or teriyaki chicken and rice, with an accompanying salad, a hot bun and a plate of fresh fruit slices (plus the requisite dessert cake).
For breakfast – perhaps a cheese omelette with sausage and potatoes or pork congee, plus no-fat yogurt, a bowl of cubed melons and a hot croissant.
EVA Air inflight entertainment
Economy seats on EVA Air’s Boeing 777-300ERs have touch-screen TV displays 11.1 inches in size.
The movie selection is good and includes all the latest Hollywood blockbusters.
Entertainment screens in Economy Class are 12-inch HD touchscreen, with USB charging capabilities.
In Royal Laurel Class (aka Business Class), you can watch the latest hits on 18-inch screens with ergonomically designed, noise-cancelling headphones.
EVA Air Premium Economy review
Want to treat yourself a bit?
If you can’t spring for lie-flat beds in Business Class (called Royal Laurel Class on EVA Air), you might want to try its Premium Economy Class.
We hear this class of service is pretty good – if you’re not in the middle row.
These EVA Air Premium Economy seats are available on flights using the Boeing 777-300ERs, but not on the Dreamliners.
This means you can’t fly Premium Economy between Seattle and Taipei (because these routes only use the Dreamliners).
The configuration is 2-4-2. Ergonomic seats are 19.3 inches wide and have a 38-inch seat pitch and extra-wide armrests.
Along with an upgraded food service, other onboard Premium Economy perks include noise-canceling head phones, Erno Laszlo or THANN amenity kits, large down pillows and soft quilts.
If you can swing it, check out Premium Economy on EVA Air.
Price? Can you use points?
EVA Air is a Taiwanese international airline.
For our flight to Bali (with a connection in Taipei), we had a choice of China Airlines (less expensive), Cathay Pacific (more expensive) and EVA Air.
On EVA Air, we could have flown for about $100 USD less than what we actually paid.
But we chose to pay more to earn more Aeroplan points on Air Canada, which is a Star Alliance partner of EVA Air’s.
The hope was we’d get enough Aeroplan points to earn back our Elite status on Air Canada – any perk is a blessing when flying these days!
So, yes, you can use Star Alliance partner points to book EVA Air flights.
EVA Air Economy basic vs. standard tickets
When you buy an EVA Economy class ticket, you can get a discount, basic, standard or up ticket. (These are the booking ticket types.)
When you buy a Premium Economy Class ticket, you can get a basic, standard or up ticket (no discount tickets though).
They each have different fare rules.
For example, a basic Economy ticket doesn’t include free seat selection. For a long-haul flight, a regular seat costs $40 to book in advance.
On the other hand, a standard Economy ticket includes free seat selection for a regular seat. (But you have to pay extra for a “preferred” Economy seat closer to the front.)
See under “Charges” on EVA Air’s Fare Family web page for more information on this.
EVA Air baggage allowance
EVA Air checked baggage
The number of free bags you can check in on EVA Air depends on your ticket and whether you’re flying internationally or within Asia.
For example, if you’re flying long-haul to or from the U.S. or Canada and you have a standard or basic Economy ticket, you’re allowed two free checked bags (maximum weight 50 lbs. each) per person.
This is better than many other major airlines. Typically, Economy passengers are only allowed one free checked bag.
See EVA Air’s checked baggage allowance limits for more information.
EVA Air carry-on
As an Economy passenger, you can take two pieces of carry-on items.
You’re allowed a small rollaway (called “hand-carry baggage” by EVA Air) no bigger than 9 x 14 x 22 inches in size. And it can’t weigh any more than 15 lbs. This bag can be put in the overhead bin.
You’re also allowed a personal item like a purse, briefcase or small backpack, which can fit under the seat.
For details, see EVA Airline’s carry-on luggage allowance.
EVA Air rating and flight safety record
Is EVA Air safe?
For 2023, EVA Air again made the list of 20 safest airlines to fly in the world, according to AirlineRatings.com.
As for other EVA Air reviews, we’re not the only travelers who like EVA Air.
The 2022 Skytrax World Airline Awards also rated EVA Air one of the 20 best airlines in the world (in the #18 spot). This, however, is a big drop from its #7 rating in 2021.
China Airlines vs. EVA Air?
Both airlines are based out of Taipei in Taiwan.
But China Airlines has a 4-star airline rating, according to Skytrax.
EVA Air, on the other hand, has a 5-star airline rating for its onboard product and service (e.g., cabin and seat cleanliness, food and beverages, entertainment and attention to cabin safety).
We had a choice – and we picked EVA Airlines.
EVA Air Covid-19 rules
See the airline’s Covid-19 information center for guidelines, the EVA Air mask policy and any restrictions.
EVA Air ticket cancellation, changes and refunds
If you get second thoughts about going on a trip and wish to cancel your ticket, EVA Air will give you a full refund if you cancel within 24 hours of buying your ticket.
If you want to change your ticket and rebook more than 24 hours after purchase, there may be penalty and fare differences charged.
EVA Air Economy review: Bottom line?
So, is EVA Air a good airline?
EVA Air won our loyalty, and we’d definitely fly with them again.
Have you flown EVA Air?
What was your experience? Do you agree with our EVA Air Economy Class review? Do you prefer flying on Asian airlines rather than North American carriers?
You can share your thoughts in the Comments below – and read about the experiences of other EVA Air passengers in this section too.
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We paid full fares for our economy tickets both times we flew round-trip with EVA Air and didn’t receive any special discounts. Nor has the airline paid us to write this EVA Airlines review or influenced us in any way here. This post consists simply of our own independent unbiased thoughts and views. Images (except 1, 2 and 10) are courtesy EVA Air.