Showing posts from July, 2014

British Airways A318 JFK – London City service

I've been fascinated by the JFK – London City flight ever since I first heard about it — a tiny plane with 32 seats (all Business Class) that flies right into the heart of London to City Airport (LCY). I'd never pay that much in cash ($6000), but with miles I was able to score a seat (details are here). 
Prosinsanely fast boarding and de-boarding both in JFK and LCYLondon City has really quick security lines and customssmall cabin feels like you're on a private planearrival service is really nice (private room with shower at a hotel spa)LCY has a bag storage service so you can easily do a "day in London" layoverLCY is close to the city center and is on the Tube/DLR so it's quick and cheap trip inFlying into JFK you clear customs in Shannon, Ireland (a plus for non-Americans) Consthe small plane has a rougher ride in turbulenceno convenient connections to other places in Europe from LCYarrival service is off-site and you have to be driven thereUPDATE:Google s…

British Airways 747 First Class London Heathrow to JFK

I've only ever flown traditional international first once prior to this trip — Munich to San Francisco 10+ years ago on Lufthansa's previous-gen product. I've sat up front quite a bit, but usually in Business class or in the "BusinessFirst" cabin that's so popular these days. No, when I think of traditional International First it's when there's a fully separate cabin above the normal Business Class. They're a dying breed these days, and they're mostly on national carriers like British Airways
Honestly, for a day flight I'm fine with an exit row or premium economy. I just want a bit more legroom and a place to charge my laptop and I'm good. On long or overnight flights I just want a place to sleep. Having fancy food and drink is nice but i think Anthony Bourdain nailed it when he said:  "There's almost never a good reason to eat on a plane. You'll never feel better after airplane food than before it. I don't understand …

Using "Book and Upgrade" to upgrade British Airways flights

Last summer I did a mileage redemption to fly one-way JFK to Heathrow in British Airways' Business (Club World). It cost me 40,000 points + $437 in fees. While I'm no fan of BA's high fuel surcharges, it was still a great deal for the upper deck of a 747. 

I've been reading a lot lately about using BA's "Book and Upgrade" feature as a better use of your money/miles than a straight-up mileage reward seat. BA lets you use miles to upgrade one class of service, so you're essentially buying a ticket in Premium Economy with cash and then using miles to upgrade it to Business. This is a clunky process on many other airlines' sites, but BA has a nice interface to help you find an upgradeable ticket to purchase and then instantly upgrade in one step. I'm not going to price out the Economy-to-Economy Plus option because it's not something I'd bother with upgrading to, nor the Business-to-First option because I'd never pay full price for a …