Hi everyone! Welcome to my first trip report of 2019 after a long hiatus, and to yet another one of my travel series. I've been super busy lately that I decided I'd take break from trip reporting. But now I'm back and ready than ever before!!
After a long discussion of where to go for the Christmas holidays since I wasn't able to go back to Hong Kong, I decided it'd be best to go to London yet again, along with some other places in Europe such as Paris and Brussels! I was quite excited as I've never been to either of the two cities, so this trip to Europe was going to be an extraordinary one. Anyways, without further ado, let's get on with the current flight! ;)
12 January 2019: BA172 JFK-LHR, B747-400, Club WorldYou are here
24 January 2019: BA115 LHR-JFK, B777-200ER, Club WorldComing soon
I booked my ticket to London about a month in advance prior to the trip. Normally, I'd go with flying Virgin Atlantic as I enjoyed the experience the last time I flew with them. However, I then decided to use my CX miles to get myself a business class ticket on British Airways. I thought to myself that this would be a good experience as it's been many years since I last flew with BA, and it wouldn't hurt to compare and see which is the better airline for this popular trans-Atlantic route. I was able to find flight with the perfects times, and within a few minutes, I was all set for my trip to London!
Anyways, back to the flight. I got an Uber in order to go to the airport. I left at around 6:00 PM, which gave me enough time to get to the airport as there is always the peak hour traffic. So, I was able to make it to John F. Kennedy International Airport with just enough time to spare. The process of checking-in for this flight was smooth as always.
Terminal 7 Departures exterior
I have to admit, it felt a bit weird coming back to Terminal 7 after 2 years. I started to get a little bit nostalgic after a few minutes. After all, I've flown out of this terminal often when CX was based here.
There have been some major changes at this terminal from the last time I was here
I headed to the BA First and Club World check-in counters, where it didn't take long for me to complete the whole process. Before I knew it, I was all set to go to London!
Heading towards security
I had to admit, Terminal 7 has changed that I almost felt like I was at a brand new terminal! I mean, it all seemed brighter than it was before!
My standard shot of Terminal 7 (2019)
Terminal 7 Gate Area
I decided to hang out at the British Airways Galleries Lounge, which I heard was going over some kind of major refurbishment
British Airways Galleries entrance at JFK
Shots of the Galleries lounge
To sum it up, I'd have to say that the lounge visit was quite average. Even though it looked a lot newer and brighter, it was pretty clear that the lounge was still going under refurbishment.
So, that meant that the lounge wasn't completely done with renovation, and that there was not a lot of choices in terms of seating and was definitely not that spacious. I was actually quite impressed with the dining area, which was huge in terms of space, and there were a lot of food options.
More seating options
Food and drink options
After some time, I moved to the dining area where I found some available seating and took advantage of their selection of food and beverages.
My "Build Your Own" pasta
Selections of wine
More shots of the lounge
After about an hour of relaxing at the lounge, I then proceeded to board the flight
Heading towards the gate
Plane to LHR: G-BYGA. If I had to be honest, I was extremely excited to be onboard a Boeing 747-400 after many years!
Gate 6 area
London, I'm coming for you!!
Down the aerobridges
Let's go! ;)
Some pre-flight information: Date: 12 January 2019 Airline: British Airways Flight Number: BA 172 Route: New York (JFK) - London (LHR) Aircraft: Boeing 747-400 Registration: G-BYGA Distance: 3445 miles Scheduled Departure Time: 8:55 PM Actual Departure Time: 9:36 PM Scheduled Arrival Time: 8:45 AM Actual Arrival Time: 8:21 AM Flight Time: 6 hrs 50 mins Departure Gate at JFK: 6 Arrival Gate at LHR: B46
Mini Club World Business Class cabin
Main Club World cabin
My seat - 19A
Views of the cabin from my seat
From what I heard, the seats on this aircraft have recently been given an upgrade. I had to admit, it looked quite nice.
View from my seat
Settling into my seat!
Club World bedding package, which I've heard so much about
Welcome drink: Champagne
Exploring the inflight entertainment system
It took approximately 15-20 minutes by the time boarding was complete. This was when the first officer came on with his pre-flight welcome, stating that we would be arriving into London ahead of schedule, with the total flight time of about 5 hours and 10 minutes.
A little storage area
Prior to pushing back, the crew came around the cabin to take orders for the dinner service in advance
We began to pushback from the terminal at around 8:50 PM, with a view of British Airways Boeing 777-200ER, G-VIIX, which will soon serve as BA2272 back to LGW
At this point of the flight, the cabin lights were slightly dimmed in preparation for takeoff, but there was hardly any difference
After the long taxi to the runway, we finally took off at around 9:35 PM
View of Long Island
Cabin with mood lighting
Within 10 minutes after departure, I went off to discover the inflight entertainment
After browsing through the inflight entertainment, I ended up with watching The Big Bang Theory
Prior to the dinner service, I headed on to the bathroom
The iconic stairway of the Boeing 747
View of the upper deck
Heading back down
A glass of Perrier with a bag of pretzels
Menu for today's flight
Before I knew it, the cabin lights were turned off and the dinner service began
I went with the oven-baked four cheese ravioli for the main course. I have to admit, it was better than I expected
For dessert, I ordered some tiramisu, which was amazing!!
Once I was done with my meal, I switched to the inflight map to find out our current location, which was also interactive
Cruising over Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada
It turned out that we had about 4 hours left, and we were making it in good time!
The UK landing card, together with the fast track invitation and my passport
After watching a couple of episodes of The Big Bang Theory, I decided to call it a night after passing Canada
I then got out of my seat to set the seat to the flat bed position and get all the contents from the bedding package afterwards. The whole process took about 5 minutes
With everything included, I was able to sleep for the remainder of the flight.
I was sleeping soundly until the first officer woke us up with his pre-arrival announcement saying that they are now starting the descent into London and we had 30 minutes until landing
The next thing I knew was the the cabin lights were back on.
Pre-arrival drink: Orange juice
It didn't take long for the cabin to prepare for landing as the whole procedure was quick as always
View of the sunrise
Final shots before landing
Before I knew it, we landed at Heathrow Airport, approximately 20 minutes ahead of schedule. Even though the taxi to the terminal took some time, it did give me a chance to spot some planes!
Actual flight route
Taxiing to the gate
Docking at gate B46 at Terminal 5
Arrival into LHR
The walk to immigration was just like I experienced the last time I was in LHR. The only difference is this is in Terminal 5, which was significantly larger than Terminal 3
Taking the automated people mover towards immigration
Heading towards the baggage claim area
It took about 10 minutes to get my bag before I made my way to the arrival hall
Before heading out, I went on to the British Airways Galleries Arrival lounge, which is located two levels above the arrival hall
In terms of a first impression, I 'd have to say that the arrival lounge was quite huge in space and has a good variety of food and drinks.
Shots of the lounge
I ended up getting a cup of coffee a croissant to start off the day!
Afterwards, I decided to head to the car park where there Uber pickup area is, and headed off to my relative's house for yet another adventure-packed vacation in Europe!
Terminal 5 car park
British Airways Terraces Lounge
New York - JFK
London - LHR
Overall, this was a decent flight onboard British Airways. Despite my initial resistance, I must say that it was worthwhile to experience different airlines here and there. The last time I flew on British Airways was many years ago, and I could tell that there has been substantial improvement in terms of service and catering, compared to the last time I flew with them. It also wouldn't hurt to mention that it felt great being on a Boeing 747 after so many years. As always, the Queen of the Skies never disappoints!
In terms of the seating, there were some pros and cons to it. The pros for example, were that it was quite wider and looked very refurbished with the controls being very easy to use and the bed being much more comfortable compared to when I flew on Virgin Atlantic 2 years ago on the A346. The cons were how the seats in J class were arranged. It honestly looked quite weird on how the arrangement was a 2-4-2, rather than a 1-2-1 like most airlines. Nevertheless, I would say it was something worth experiencing.
As always, thanks so much for reading this trip report. I hope you enjoyed it. Tune in next time for the return flight which I'll be posting soon!
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