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British Airways is celebrating the Lunar New Year with surprise upgrades & new menu items (very limited time)

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Apparently, 10 February is the Lunar New Year, so in honor of the ‘year of the dragon’, British Airways is adding a few new things to its menus (for a limited time), and on select long haul routes, some passengers will receive a surprise upgrade into Business Class.

The menu items

During the Lunar New Year festival, all British Airways passengers traveling on the airline’s routes to/from Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Singapore can expect to find some new items on the menus.

First Class passengers will be able to select black pepper spiced fillet of beef with Chinese seven spiced broccolini.

a person pouring sauce on a plate of food

Business Class passengers will be able to order spicy Kung Pao prawn, a dish which British Airways assures us was ‘previously served in the Chinese Imperial Palace‘ (as well as my local takeaway!)

a plate of food on a table

For dessert, both First Class and Business Class passengers will be able to order a white chocolate tangerine mousse which, apparently, is a fruit that symbolises gold in Chinese culture (can someone please confirm if this is true or is BA making things up?)

a bowl of orange ice cream

Premium economy and Economy Class passengers will be offered ‘Lion’s Head meatballs’ (made of steamed pork in oyster sauce) which, apparently, is a traditional Huaiyang dish.

a person holding chopsticks to a plate of food

These new menu items will be on offer on the following dates & routes:

  • Flights between Singapore, Hong Kong and London between 10 and 13 February 2024.
  • Flights between Beijing and London on 13 and 18 February 2024.
  • Flights between Shanghai and London on 13th and 16th February 2024.

I have no idea why the new items are being offered on such a limited number of dates, but that’s what BA has told us.

Surprise upgrades

British Airways has said that select travelers heading to London on flights from Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Singapore between 10 and 18 February 2024 may be fortunate enough to be surprised with a free upgrade to Business Class.

More specifically, a ‘handful’ of passengers born in ‘year of the dragon’ years (1928, 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, and 2012) will be getting these upgrades, so if you were not born in one of these years, you’re not in the running for a cabin boost.

There’s a chance that some passengers on flights from London (to Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Singapore) will also be surprised with upgrades, but BA is being a bit vague about this.

We know that red envelopes with ‘gifts’ will be handed out at Heathrow T5 during the Lunar New Year festival, but it’s unclear if those ‘gifts’ extend to surprise upgrades or not.

Bottom line

For a (very) limited time, British Airways will be helping to celebrate the Lunar New Year by offering some new items on its menus on flights to/from Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Singapore, and a few lucky people (born in the year of the dragon) will be getting a surprise upgrade to Business Class on these routes as well.

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  1. Tagines/mandarins in Chinese sound like “gold”. So it’s traditionally lucky to give mandarins during the Lunar New Year.

    It’s also why if you visit countries that celebrate Chinese New year, one of the common decorations are mandarin plants/trees. “Trees of gold”

    • ‘Apparently’ because I only have BAs press release to go on I don’t repeat any information that an airline has given without caveating it.

      And my local Chinese restaurant makes a fantastic Kung Pao prawn dish which is why it got a mention.

      Is that clearer?

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