Thursday 9 February 2017

British Airways First Class Review

British Airways first class amenity pack

2016 review (London - NYC)

Last summer with an Amex companion ticket running out I decided to book a trip to New York. Using some of my air miles I managed to get 2 British Airways First Class tickets and decided I would take Jess along with me.  

We few out in Business and First on the way home, our routing was Glasgow - Heathrow - JFK (you still get a free connection in the UK for Avios long haul redemption's).

Flight = 2 x Business outbound, First inbound
Total Cost = 125,000 Avios, 1 Companion Ticket & £1000 
Value of flight booked on same day = £7000

Our flight home started in Manhattan, with no plan of how to get to the airport we decided to just get the bus, Mistake!!!! I'm not sure what bus we got onto but it certainly wasn't a direct one (it did say JFK airport on to be fair), it took almost 2.5 hours diverting off the highway every five minutes to avoid tolls and getting stuck in traffic in-between. After a good few hours in a bus with no air-con and thinking we might actually miss our flight we thankfully arrived at the airport.

First Check In

(sorry this photo is actually in London, didn't get a chance to snap one in JFK)

At JFK instead of checking in at the normal desks there is a private First Class check in area where the BA staff will take you bags and assist you checking in while you relax in a very Union Jack sofa. After dropping your bags off you turn directly behind you and there is a private security to x-ray your hand luggage. Immediately after going through security you swing to the left and enter the Concord Lounge, no Que's, no fuss. It took about 10 minutes from check in to champagne in the lounge and only about 100y of walking. 

Concord Lounge (JFK)

Food at the British Airways Concorde lounge in JFK

The Concord Lounge is British Airways flagship lounge lounge, there are only two in the world and if you fly this route you get to use both. Once you enter a waiter will be walking about offering champagne or drinks from the bar (Taittinger). Now our flight back to London was an evening flight so had a dinner service but we couldn't pass up the opportunity to try out dinner in the Concord Lounge so we sat down for our first dinner of the night. The food was pretty good and the alcohol was plentiful, all top shelf stuff. Once we made the most of the included food and drink we were told that the plane was fully boarded and they were ready for us to board (no final call or we will off-load your luggage here). A short walk from the lounge and we were in our seat. 

BA0176 (JFK-LHR) (Seats 1E & 1F)
Relaxing with a glass of champagne in first class

When boarding the aircraft a member of the First Cabin Crew personally took us to our seat while offering both of us a glass of champagne. by the time we had finished exploring all the shinny buttons and cupboards we were cruising at 30,000ft. I picked the middle seats in First as they are good for travelling as a couple, there is a divided that you can put up or down electronically when you have had enough of you partners patter.  I would still say that the best seats for travelling as a couple are the two middle seats in club world, having these seats is like having your own little mini cabin but if you want some peace from your other-half there is no escape!

British Airways first class champagne menu from 2015
Photo of leg room and seat of BA First Class

After an hour or so we were asked if we would like to sit together for our dinner, after being a bit confused we were shown that the First Class seats can turn into a snug little dining space for two. 

Having dinner in BA First Class

Second dinner down and time for a nap, we made our beds and easily fell asleep while cruising over the Atlantic. After a couple of hours we were woken to a refreshing breakfast before we departed the plane (you get off first before anyone else gets to leave the plane).

BA First Class seat and screen

(Jess watching a scary movie before bed)

leg room and seat on British Airways First class

(Plenty of room to stretch your legs)

Concord Lounge LHR

Using fast track security we made our way to the LHR lounges, we stopped past the Elemis Spa which as a Business or First class ticket holder you can use between flights. After a quick massage and a shower we made out way to the Concord lounge for some breakfast. Again this was table service breakfast and was great, second breakfast of the day done! 

Eventually our gate was called and we ended our first class trip with a flight back to Glasgow. 

If you have a good chunk of Air-Miles or are saving them up then I definitely recommend booking a trip to NYC in first, there is always good availability and it is one of the lowest cost First Class per air-mile trip.

I hope you enjoyed this post and let me know what you think of BA First Class 

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