For more coverage of the new BA Club Suite, including a virtual “review” and an interview with BA’s CEO Alex Cruz, see:
- British Airways Club Suite reviewed
- BA’s CEO Alex Cruz on the new Club Suite
- Everything you need to know about the new British Airways Club Suite
- British Airways confirms Tel Aviv and Bengaluru as Club Suite destinations
British Airways has unveiled its long-awaited new business class seat, which will launch on the carrier’s first A350 aircraft in July.
Branded the Club Suite, the product features a sliding door, 40 per cent more storage, and a 1-2-1 layout with direct aisle access for all passengers.
New features include a vanity unit and mirror, IFE screen measuring between 17 and 18.5 inches depending on the aircraft, with the ability to watch inflight entertainment from gate-to-gate, and PC / USB power ports.
The current Club World ying-yang layout has been replaced by a Collins Aerospace Super Diamond seat in a herringbone formation.
Business Traveller’s Tom Otley had a virtual preview of the new suite last week, experiencing the new product through an Oculus headset. Tom’s detailed thoughts on the Club Suite can be read in a separate article here, while his interview with BA’s CEO Alex Cruz discussing the seat can be read here.
As the seatmap below shows, there will be 56 Club Suites in the A350 Club World cabin, along with another 56 World Traveller Plus seats, and 219 in World Traveller.
World Traveller Plus will benefit from new furnishings including a new pillow and warm quilt and new amenity kit, and the A350 aircraft will have wifi throughout.
It’s important to note that the new suite will initially only be available on a fraction of BA’s long-haul aircraft, with four A350 deliveries expected this year, as well as two retro-fitted B777-200s.
BA says that it will roll out the new product “in a carefully managed programme designed to minimise disruption to customers”.
The A350 will operate on selected short-haul crew familiarisation flights to Madrid in August and September, before being rostered onto selected services to Toronto and Dubai from October.
The exact delivery date of the first A350 will be confirmed in June, with A350 long-haul flights currently being sold from October 1.
Beyond that the carrier will begin to roll out the Club Suite “on further long-haul aircraft across the network” from the start of 2020.
Positive reviews for the new seat when it launches will be crucial – in recent years BA’s current Club World product has been overtaken by carriers offering direct aisle access, sliding doors and the latest IFE systems. For our comprehensive business class seat guide, detailing the products on major airlines worldwide, see:
BA will also be going head-to-head with rival UK flag carrier Virgin Atlantic, which is launching an all-new Upper Class suite on its own A350-1000 aircraft this summer.
Commenting on the news Alex Cruz, British Airways’ Chairman and CEO, said:
“The arrival of our first A350 featuring our new Club Suite is one of the most exciting developments in our £6.5 billion investment programme.
“Each new suite has direct aisle access and comes with a personal door – design features which were incorporated as a direct result of the feedback we’ve had from our customers.
“We’ve worked hard to ensure every aspect of the Club World experience from the lounges we’ve refreshed, to the new gourmet menus from Do and Co on flights from Heathrow, and the luxurious bedding we’ve introduced from The White Company exudes the very British style and quality customers expect from us.
“At British Airways we have one of Europe’s largest long-haul fleets and most far-reaching global networks, so it will take some time to make the cabin available to everybody. We hope that as more customers have the chance to experience it, they’ll enjoy travelling in it as much as we’ve enjoyed designing it.”