BA new First a bit cramped on 747?

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This topic contains 103 replies, has 39 voices, and was last updated by  FlyingChinaman 25 Jun 2012
at 04:41

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  • Anonymous


    I just flew BA in F from LHR to HKG (first time in New FIRST on 747 but having being in new F on a 777)

    My impression was that it was a bit cramped as compared to old First. (my Travel partner also agreed) and given the choice I would have preferred the 777 rather than the 747 experience where there seems to be a bit more space [we were in 4E and 4F] partifularly behind my seat in 2K!

    Having been in Emirates F (in 777 and 380 configerations) for the last 10 long hauls [DXB, BOM,SYD, SIN] The experience is indeed quite inferior but manages to just about hold the level due to experienced and competent Cabin Crew (and Concorde Lounge @ LHR)

    I fear however that if BA have this (cramped) configeration inF on the A380 then a great opportunity might be missed!



    Agree 747 is tight but the 777 is much better. I avoid E and F on either aircraft as those seats feel to exposed and you have to get out to get to your personal cupboard. However there are more spacious if you decide to let a guest use the buddy seat. 1A and K are two small being cramped in the nose. Otherwise I find the seat very comfortable and funtional.


    Plenty of space in 1K of a 744 and a big improvement on the walnut-fest that was/is old First. IFE not relevant as my iPad has what I want on it. Grub was good quality bistro. Concorde room was rather special. Vino very agreeable. Service understated but excellent. A real treat.


    If you think about first in the nose of the 747, BA have fourteen seats. In the same space, LH have sixteen business seats on their 744s and will have eight F seats on their 748s. CX have nine F seats on the 744 so when BA cram in in excess of 50% more seats and still call it first class when in terms of space it’s closer to business on LH you can see why it feels cramped in comparison to other carriers.

    Add to that poor food and Jekyll and Hyde crews and you really do wonder why you would pay their prices.


    Thanks Henkel.

    I suppose there is noting better than a factual comparison with other carriers operating the same equipment.

    Upstairs in 744 club feels roomier!

    I suppose they get away with this (and all 14 seats were full on my last sector!) because persons in the South East of the UK have not got a significant choice in F (with direct carriers ex LHR) and the BAEC is so good that accumulating Avios and status keeps bringing PAX back. No wornder EK is doing so well out of the UK regions.


    I would have to agree. BA First, least worst choice ex UK. Disinterested cabin crew, woeful food, wine hit and miss and an on board arrogance which is just comical. Henkel is absolutely correct, CX First is a delight, amazing cabin ambience , cabin crew who make you feel special. QF First on the A380 also amazing, why BA First is so horrible is anybody’s guess – it is sub par and don’t get me started on the Concorde room – staff seem to be doing you a favour, nothing like the QF First lounge in Sydney – Concorde room – generally a mediocre experience.


    Any cabin with shell seating is going to looked cramped, irrespective of the number of seats.

    What matters more though is not how cramped the cabin may look, but how spacious and open the seat and pax space feels, when in the seat.


    Not sure I would agree about shell seating, QF A380 business feels very roomy indeed, in fact would go as far as to say there appears to be more personal space in J than BA F.

    Would also take issue with comment about QF F on A380 especially ex LHR. Ground product poor (T3) crew inexperienced though very willing and food is dire, even wine has been downgraded and so the just leaves the seat which I would agree is fabulous.

    From my first experience of New BA F in August 2010 I have been critical of the layout. The 747 foot print of seats is greater and the introduction of personal wardrobe has reduced the amount of personal space. There is also a rather nasty slope to the floor at rows 3 and 4 which in the dead of night can pitch the unwary into the seats of other passengers.

    I am also yet to be convinced that it is a new seat and I maintain it is a revamp of the old one….despite the much hyped and alleged £100 million investment……pure spin and double accounting in my view.

    The product is sufficient to satisfy the North Atlantic Trade but if going East it is a very poor relation to CX SQ etc and the fares BA charge cannot be justified. Especially given the comments around food crew and IFE with which I would entirely agree. On their day BA are fantastic but those days are rare.

    CX 9 seats in an area where BA squeeze in 14 is wonderful and the whole experience is First Class. I have not yet enjoyed a SQ suite but would like too…..just too mean to part with my own money to do so….

    I am not so concerned about the number of seats and would maintain that when there 18 seats in F on BA with 2 x 2 seating the service on board was First Class. Silver service, joints carved at your seat etc…it was service. I appreciate he fact the beds are now essentials but something was lost when trolley service was abolished. Much has changed and much has got better but overall First Class has lost a great deal and especially service.


    I agree, BA F is cramped, far too many seats in the space and I don’t agree that once you are in the seat it’s OK if the cabin is full. One of the pleasures of F is being able to get up and move around without bumping in to seats and walking sideways in the aisles.

    On the 744 CX have the best config by a long way with nine seats but I’m looking forward to seeing how LH arrange eight seats.


    Henkel.Trocken: 16 seats on Lufthansa F class cabin …

    Not strictly true as on a number of 747s, LH is cutting the upper deck seat count from 16 to 8 under its “seat and a bed” concept:


    For the avoidance of doubt, the new BA First Class is a completely new seat with a totally different “action” compared to the previous iteration. It also includes a unique window treatment and a unique “sky drive” control system. Patent available here:

    You can see more about the new F here:


    New maybe, cramped definitely. It wasn’t a game changer.

    As for the window controls, the are a gimic. A bit like SQ C seats, they are yet to be copied and are underwhelming.


    It wasn’t meant to be a game changer.

    BA hasn’t set out its offering for the A380 due in 2013; again I doubt that will be a game changer, but when you are already getting high loads in premium cabins and demand is such that you can sustain that cabin rather than removing it (as Lufthansa is doing, and Qantas has done) then I think they have the right product for the market served.

    It may not be the most spacious cabin out there, but it’s profitable, competitive particularly on the North American route and, importantly, isn’t in danger of being removed just yet.

    Here’s a pic, demonstrating the space:


    Of course, I forgot, it’s BA reaching for the ceiling again, not the sky.

    It was an awful lot of hype for a refresh.

    Typical, poor product and Jekyll & Hyde crews, awful food. Sums it up perfectly.

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