BA's CE Pluses & Minuses

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This topic contains 43 replies, has 20 voices, and was last updated by  Folium 15 Jul 2019
at 23:40
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Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 44 total)

  • canucklad
    Participant

    I’m not devoutly religious nor am I an expert in virtuous food for the pious soul. So please allow my ignorance.

    But , why don’t BA fill all the meals on the Tel Aviv flight to abide by Kosher laws, and the same for Islamic destinations with Halal meals ?

    Many of us probably frequent restaurants that serve up those meals without us even realising !


    ASK1945
    Participant

    I’m not devoutly religious nor am I an expert in virtuous food for the pious soul. So please allow my ignorance.

    But , why don’t BA fill all the meals on the Tel Aviv flight to abide by Kosher laws, and the same for Islamic destinations with Halal meals ?

    Many of us probably frequent restaurants that serve up those meals without us even realising !

    I asked BA that very question and they told me that it would be too expensive (Kosher meals are more expensive to produce because of the supervisory requirements). However, I then pushed them to at least provide some spare Kosher and/or vegetarian meals, but they declined.

    To be fair, I have observed that the proportion of passengers who are served these meals is much less than 50%.


    capetonianm
    Participant

    why don’t BA fill all the meals on the Tel Aviv flight to abide by Kosher laws, and the same for Islamic destinations with Halal meals ?

    I think it would be wrong to force people to eat meals prepared to the dietary laws of a religion they do not adhere to.
    In particular, I know there are some concerns about the way animals are slaughtered for Halaal (and possibly also Kosher) food as it supposedly cruel. I’m not debating whether that’s true or not, simply a fact.
    I suppose it could be solved by only serving vegetarian/vegan food but someone would object to that. You can’t win.


    rferguson
    Participant

    I would be interested to know if CC give feedback to BA catering about what the actual requests were, so that they can compile statistics of passenger first choice by route and day, and the ability to fulfil those requests. This could lead to less wastage, and also to happier passengers. It would certainly help if there was the ability to pre-order meals in CE.

    I must also say that CC normally ask BAEC Gold cards what their choice is, before the general service.

    We do. We actually have an online platform to do this which was launched recently. Prior to this it was a more cumbersome ‘onboard form’ completed on an iPad by the CSD.

    The problem is, it’s never an exact science. Sometimes there will be meal choices which we know from the get go will be a difficult sell. Pork for example as it is something so many religions or cultures won’t/prefer not to eat. Game/venison/pigeon – we’ve had all these onboard before and again they will not be popular. The chicken and beef scenario gets tougher. You can operate LHR-JFK working in business class on Monday and beef could be the most popular option. The same flight the monday next week it’s chicken. Thankfully on longhaul we do have buffers over and above the booked loads although i’m not sure if this is the case on short haul. We do sometimes have to refuse a first choice of course. World Traveller plus is trickiest in this regards. BA recently enhanced the product by introducing a third choice of hot meals. But the number of actual meals remains the same. So if there are 40 customers there are 40 hot meals divided by ratios into the three options. It’s frustrating for both the customer and the crew when it’s a case of ‘i’ll have the beef’. iI’m afraid we are out of that’. ‘Oh, ok i’ll have the chicken then’. ‘I’m sorry we’re out of that too. We only have the pasta’. A buffer would really help like we have in Club World.

    Pre-ordering works but for whatever reason BA don’t really push it and haven’t extended it beyond flights from the UK which is unfortunate.

    Personal opinions only.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    capetonianm
    Participant

    One of the airlines I worked for used to order 30% extra of each type of meal on longhaul flights, there was a ‘weighting’ where for example they knew that chicken was more popular than fish.
    Huge amounts of food were wasted and had to be destroyed.


    ASK1945
    Participant

    Actually, pre-ordering is offered for some short haul Business Class – for example Tenerife and Madeira. I am sure there are others. I think it’s because the plne is only on the ground for a short while, so they bring the meals out on the outward flight, ready for the inward.

    It’s also a good way of ensuring that you do get a meal. I was talking to a friend this morning, who had just returned from a short haul Club Europe flight – and they had run out of meals on the return journey, when they got to her.


    capetonianm
    Participant

    It can all go badly wrong, I remember being on a BMI flight early one morning from LHR-WAW, C class, cooked breakfast.

    The smell from the galley was not very appetising for the time of day, and when the foil covered pack was opened it contained …. sweet and sour chicken. They’d loaded the meals the wrong way round and this was the lunch offering.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    SimonS1
    Participant

    Actually, pre-ordering is offered for some short haul Business Class – for example Tenerife and Madeira. I am sure there are others. I think it’s because the plne is only on the ground for a short while, so they bring the meals out on the outward flight, ready for the inward.

    They do that on all SH flights, even those where the plane stops overnight.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    EU_Flyer
    Participant

    I think it would be wrong to force people to eat meals prepared to the dietary laws of a religion they do not adhere to.

    Without disagreeing with you, when Qantas flew to London via Dubai, all meals on board in all classes were halal. No bacon was served for years, causing much frustration to those purist Aussies who want their bacon and eggs.


    LaundryMan
    Participant

    I remember flying back TLV last year in CW and they offered shell fish as a main course which I thought at the time was a little insensitive
    I made a comment to the CSM but he was not aware of the problem with shell fish from TLV

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    K1ngston
    Participant

    I remember flying back TLV last year in CW and they offered shell fish as a main course which I thought at the time was a little insensitive

    I made a comment to the CSM but he was not aware of the problem with shell fish from TLV

    Wonder if they were wrapped in bacon???


    IanFromHKG
    Participant

    Beyond that, as we are now having regularly to commute to the Netherlands, Snr Management and I rather like the offerings onboard the late morning-early afternoon LCY-RTM-LCY services when we are frequently the only two up front and it’s a bit of a gulp to manage lunch and a drink during a 25 minute window between ascent and descent. But, as pointed out elsewhere, the onboard offerings out of LCY need to be better owing to the lack of a lounge (at either end in this case).

    I remember my first ever business trip by ‘plane, in 1987, from Heathrow to Leeds/Bradford (I don’t remember how long it was supposed to be but it is currently scheduled to take one hour, which seems about right). Somehow, within that time, the crew managed to serve the entire aircraft with a hot breakfast and drinks (I was in economy, and I remember it was still a damn sight better than the breakfasts you get in CE nowadays).

    Incidentally, it took me about five times as long to get to LHR and through the airport from the family home (back in Chislehurst in those days) as it did to get from LHR to Leeds/Bradford. I could probably have driven there faster. Although then I would have missed the excitement of having the pax three persons in front of me in the security queue being discovered with a handgun on his person. Back in the active-IRA days, as you can imagine that was quite a LOT of excitement. Damn nearly missed the flight!


    red_robbo
    Participant

    @ Canucklad

    Why assume that the majority of the Club passengers were of Icelandic origin. I would have thought that given the size of the Icelandic population they would have been way in the minority!


    rferguson
    Participant

    I’m not devoutly religious nor am I an expert in virtuous food for the pious soul. So please allow my ignorance.

    But , why don’t BA fill all the meals on the Tel Aviv flight to abide by Kosher laws, and the same for Islamic destinations with Halal meals ?

    Many of us probably frequent restaurants that serve up those meals without us even realising !

    On several Middle Eastern routes in economy the food is all Halal (chicken curry option one and vegetarian pasta option two). This also allows a non halal option for the handful of non-muslim customers you’ll find onboard who does not want to eat halal meat (which if you are a meat eater and travelling to the middle east you will be anyway!).

    It’s not the same on the TLV in regards to Kosher meals and I imagine that a large part of this is down to cost but also that Kosher laws regarding food seem to be a little more complicated and dependent on how orthodox a passenger is. It’s been a while since I operated a TLV (they have been Mixed Fleet routes for a while now) but I do recall that for some Kosher customers a vegetarian meal was OK, others would refuse it saying it wasn’t kosher. I’m sure someone more knowledgeable on here can explain better 🙂


    capetonianm
    Participant

    I wish I could remember the details of a fascinating conversation I had with a delightful Orthodox Jewish man with whom I shared the first class cabin of an SAA JNB-LHR many years ago.

    When the meal service arrived he mentioned to the miserable curmudgeonly old steward, who was only interested in pushing duty-free sales, that he had requested a Kosher meal. The steward snapped back : “You didn’t and we haven’t got any so you’ll have to eat what’s on board or go hungry. I might be able to find you a salad.”

    The passenger and I had a long and interesting chat about different ‘levels’ of Judaism and the various dietary laws. All very complex.

    And I had the worst airline breakfast I’ve ever eaten on any flight, probably the steward’s revenge for my refusing to buy duty free.

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