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Anonymous7 Feb 2013
Looking for some advice on flying from Scotland to the USA later in the year, will be going to Texas.
I fly with United EDI – EWR, their business product isn’t fantastic, nor is it dire, it is what it is – for me direct from EDI without the hassle of transferring at LHR, this pays big dividends coming home on an overnight flight and I don’t have to sit in T5 for hours wanting to sleep.
Looking at United’s schedules the smartest way for me to go to cut down airport connection times is to go to Brussels then to Denver or Washington but at both US destinations I have a long wait until my Austin flight.
So, long story short would be if anyone has any better ideas? I’ve done BA business/first and Virgin upper class plenty via LHR but my hope is to avoid Heathrow, I’ve not tried AA or US Airways business class and am curious if I am missing out. I’d even give Lufthansa/Air France a go but I’m not sure if they all offer lie-flats in business?
Thanks in advance.
AOTG.7 Feb 2013
Looking at the schedules everything is 3 flights unless you are happy to go United via Newark which can get you to Austin with 3 hour connections both ways (based on May travel dates). I guess anything else will take quite a bit longer as you will need 2 hours I guess for a connecting point in the US plus whatever ever else in Europe which would be a minimum of an hour in the most likelihood.
Otherwise you could look at KLM/Delta via Amsterdam and Atlanta/Minneapolis though I’m not sure if there Business Class products are any better than United.7 Feb 2013
No one knows because its new B777-300ER doesn’t enter service at Heathrow until the beginning of March. Its first route will be one to Dallas.
Comments elsewhere on this Forum suggest that, on paper, AA will have a class-leading product.
Of course, much depends on the flight itself and the quality of the cabin staff but it would be worth giving it a try. Just make doubly-sure though that the B777-300ER will operate the flight or flights you wish to take.7 Feb 2013
Thanks again, I’m on AA’s website just now and their fares are very competitive….I might also throw in a South American weekend too seeing how cheaply I can do this trip.
AOTG.7 Feb 2013
Service on AA isn’t bad. I haven’t tried the new seat, but it is based on the same base as the new CX seat which is arguably the best J seat in the sky right now. Mind you, I suspect AA won’t have put all the same refinements into it as CX! Whether it is worth the extra stop… Hmmmm…
Incidentally, US Airways also use the same base seat for their Envoy business class, but I am told that they have a fairly basic iteration of it and the service is fairly dire…7 Feb 2013
I’m a wee bit confused about the AA seat – is it lie flat? It says in the blurb that it is, however, looking at their images it is angled.
Coming back from Singapore I had the misfortune of a BA flight changing to a Qantas plane and it was one of those angled seats, I hated it and never slept a wink…..
AOTG.7 Feb 2013
The webpage is out-of-date. It shows the old J product on existing B777s. This is angled lie-flat and was dated before it even saw the light of day.
Here’s the relevant page for the B777-300ER:
Also see this previous thread on the new AA J class:7 Feb 2013
There is some confusion in the nomenclature used.
Lie Flat is used for “lie flat at an angle” seating – a wedgy bed, and not very comfy in my experience on Air France, Thai, old Qantas and SilverJet.
Fully Flat is what you need – 180 degrees horizontal, like BA’s longhaul Club World.
Confusingly, some airlines are duplicitously using lie flat for the horizontal beds, which confuses everything.
The old AA seat is dreadful, but if you can get on the new 777-300ER then it will be a superb experience, though naturally the lounges and onboard experience will be of variable quality.7 Feb 2013
If i was flying to the US, i would definately investigate using EI through Dublin…the benefits of pre clearing US customs and immigration are obvious, although as you say there is no better feeling than landing @ EDI knowing your almost home….
And if i was paying for the journey myself, i would definately consider DUB as my origin city, and flying over very cheaply from EDI to DUB even if its on Ryanscare!!!7 Feb 2013
Indeed, you are correct about the ‘lie-flat’ misdirection, I’ve read quite a bit more on AA’s website and it appears the new product is designated as 77W on their flight numbers….which in fact works out a treat for my journey’s as I’m on those aircraft.
AOTG7 Feb 2013
May I elbow in here. I have to book LHR IAD in the summer and looking at UA fares in Global First they are pretty healthy compared to BA CW. As I will have my wife with me who is already missing the CCR will the seats save me from her wrath? They look fine to me and at £80 or so more than CW, several £K less than F for a return on my dates. Lounges at T1 passable? Generally only use T3 and T5 so appreciate any advice guys. Thanks L7 Feb 2013