This winter will see yours truly going across both the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans, without actually going around the world. This is a holiday of lots of flying and as a fellow aviation geek, truly a season of joy. I started my holiday first to Boston to see my best friend, and then will journey to Asia via Europe, before heading back to Colorado in January followed by a lengthy week back to London via Chicago, Tokyo and Hong Kong. I will be flying some exciting products too – starting with BA’s World Traveller economy product followed by a 747 upper deck experience, to the eventual climax of trying out ANA first class next year.
The trip has been in the clockworks for quite a while. I booked my flights back in May and I managed to score a very sweet deal. I paid for World Traveller on the outbound and World Traveller Plus on the inbound, upgrading the inbound with miles, and part paid for the whole thing in miles. It was fantastic value for a transatlantic return journey, not least being able to experience upper deck on a 747 on the way back.
My trip starts at the First Wing in London Heathrow Terminal 5
There was not a huge wait for check-in, though having to wait was indeed a bit of a novelty! Security was quick and I got into the lounge soon enough. I had quite a while in the lounge but I had to catch up on lots of work so I did not have much to report on. Plus, the Galleries First lounge provides lacklustre food options, anyways. The champagne bar is always fitting for a little celebratory post, however:
I left for the gate at 4 pm and arrived just in time for priority boarding. Despite as a gold (Emerald) member, I chose not to push ahead in the queue when they called for gold as I did not want to seem like a DYKWIA. I gladly allowed bronze members and those in Club World (rightly prioritised!) board in front of me before joining. This was not a very elite-heavy flight at the back I think: as the section lead only greeted myself and another person once we were on the way. The gate agents did a reasonable job enforcing priority boarding turning back economy class passengers and I did not have to wait for too long to board.
My seat is 26C – the first row of Economy Class and an exit row seat
We were underway shortly. The section lead greeted me, welcomed me on board personally and said that BA appreciates my business. This was a really nice touch, and I was later offered the new Club World amenity kit produced by the White Company.
Drink services started first. I opted for sparkling water and a G&T as per usual.
A relative small economy class cabin meant that dinner service started extremely soon. I was served my meal 1 hour 15 minutes after departure. I chose chicken casserole with kale mashed potatoes. The other choice was pasta (that was as much clue I had – both my neighbours went for chicken)
It tasted a lot better than it looked.
I asked for seconds and the section lead came back with another meal and another bread!
Just under 5 hours to go!
Soon after the meal service, the cabin lights were dimmed and I managed some rest while finishing my magazine
Approaching North America
I was provided with cups of tea by the lovely cabin crew during the time I was awake and I felt extremely well taken care of. One of the joys of flying BA is that their tea is really proper and nice. An hour prior to landing, the lights went on and snacks were provided
The flight went by extremely quickly and soon enough it was time to land into Boston
The flight went by extremely quickly. We were barely in air for more than 6 hours and we arrived 50 minutes ahead of schedule. I had to wait for my bag, which was a testament to the efficiency of the CBP check point at Boston. This BA flight was extremely enjoyable: the food and beverage provisions were above par – the white wine was very drinkable and fruity – and the cabin crew was extremely professional: constantly passing through the cabin was water and juice. The hard product was solid: the TV was easy to operate and with good content (admittedly I was saving the content as I have more hours of flying to do later this month) and the seat was a lot better than the older ones.
Some Boston highlights:
The Massachusetts State House
Make way for Ducklings
The Democratic Donkey – ‘jackass’
‘Tis the season to be jolly
Graveyards commemorating the fight for freedom
The Battle of Bunker Hill memorial
View from the top
The Halifax Christmas Tree
Ice skating at the Frog Pond in Boston Common
Boston Tea Party
The JFK Presidential Library
The flag inside
Dinner from the top of the Prudential Tower
Sunset on Massachusetts Av
Fusion food: Korean beef fries