Recently, I took my first flights since the beginning of March and I finally got home to Los Angeles for a few days. I've been putting off a return to LA for months (I've cancelled four separate trips) but, eventually, things came to a head and I had no choice but to fly.
The Conrad London St James is arguably Hilton's best property in London, but it's a property I had never visited until recently as I usually prefer to make the most of the fantastic weekend deals that are often on offer at the London Marriott Canary Wharf. On this occasion, Joanna and I were looking for a change of scenery and with the Conrad selling award nights at a very reasonable price, it was easy to decide to see what the property has to offer.
American Airlines offers a Premium Economy cabin on most of its long-haul fleet and this is a review of the airline's product on its Boeing 777-200 aircraft flying between London Heathrow and Los Angeles. With a flying time scheduled at well over 10 hours, there was plenty of time to get a good sense of what the American Airlines Premium Economy cabin and service are all about.
On overnight flights, I like to board, settle down and get some rest as quickly as possible (especially on flights as short as the New York - London route) so I generally don't eat any of the meals served and my interactions with the crew are pretty limited. That's why what follows isn't going to be anything like a standard flight review and, instead, is just a look inside the Club World (Business Class) cabin of a British Airways 777.
Virgin Atlantic's Premium Economy cabin is known for offering the widest seats you'll find outside of a First or Business Class cabin and, combined with the airline's reputation for friendly flight attendants, that's what made this cabin an appealing choice for an overnight flight that I had to take between Washinton D.C. and London at a time when Business Class fares were sky-high.
American Airlines operates its best narrowbody aircraft (complete with lie-flat seats in First & Business Class) on a few select transcontinental routes on which the airline feels that it needs to compete for premium passenger traffic. One of the routes on which these aircraft operate is the route between Los Angeles and New York (JFK).
For a recent trip, I was booked to fly in British Airways Club World (Business Class) on an overnight flight between Miami and London. I asked the agent at the check-in counter if they were offering any upgrades to First Class and was quoted a price of $950 - I turned it down. On an overnight flight where I'm going to spend the majority of my time resting or sleeping $950 is considerably more than I'm prepared to pay.
It has been quite some time since I last flew with Virgin Atlantic and while my last experience in the airline's Premium Economy cabin was very good, my feelings towards the older of the Virgin Atlantic Upper Class A330 cabins were less than positive. It would be interesting to see how I felt this time around.
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Lounges like Cathay’s “The Pier” First Class lounge and Qatar Airways’ Al Safwa First Class lounge always make the "top airport lounges" lists (with good reason) and are a cut above most lounges, but the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse at Heathrow T3 regularly gets a mention too (it seems almost universally popular) so I was excited to finally be able to take a look inside and see what's on offer. Lounges like Cathay’s “The Pier” First Class lounge and Qatar Airways’ Al Safwa First Class lounge always make these lists (with good reason) and are a cut above most lounges but the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse at Heathrow T3 regualry gets a mention too (it seems almost universaly popular) so I was excited to finally be able to take a look inside and see what's on offer.