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Syracuse, New York
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British airways - JFK to LHR and back

I need to travel from JFK to LHR in a few weeks via British Airways in the economy class. I have been reading very bad reviews about BA when it comes to economy, and wanted to get a sense from other travelers about the quality of flight BA offers on this route. I will be flying flight number BA 0174.

Can anyone share any insight on how good or bad this trip could be based on their prior experience, and if at all BA is too bad to travel on, and I should try to change the airline.

Thanks.

Vancouver, Canada
Destination Expert
for London
Level Contributor
56,337 posts
15 reviews
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1. Re: British airways - JFK to LHR and back

Keep in mind that those who have had 'bad' experiences are more likely to proclaim them in public than those who have had 'good' / uneventful experiences. One person may damn the entire airline for offering brand A soft drink instead of brand B and having one hot and one cold meal instead of two hot meals, but the next person you speak to will consider those things irrelevant.

A few weeks ago I had my first flights in World Traveller since 2003 (I usually fly in WT+ or Club World). They were ultimately fine in that they departed and arrived on time and cabin crew ensured passenger safety and were as professional as they have always been.

But BA have changed a few very small things about on board service. No longer is one offered a small packet of savoury snacks with one's drink before the main meal, and the amenity kit (which used to contain socks, an eye mask and a small toothbrush with toothpaste) has been downsized to toothbrush and paste alone. Socks and eye masks are available on request. You will find a pillow (with a papery cover on it) and wrapped blanket on your seat when boarding; there will be a wrapped headset waiting for you as well.

After departure from JFK crew will offer drinks then a hot dinner; tea and coffee will be offered after the meal service. Crew will work fairly quickly to get the meal served and trays collected as most pax will want lights out so they can get a bit of sleep. Crew will make runs through the cabin with trays of water and juice every 40 minutes or so, but if you want something else to drink just go to the galley and ask.

About two hours before arrival the lights will be switched on and you will be offered a breakfast box with a muffin and yogurt along with coffee or tea. Crew will hand out landing cards, and at the 20 minute call the seat belt signs will be switched on and you will (ideally) not have to stay in the stacks over Heathrow before wheels down.

Seat pitch in WT is about the same as on other carriers. It's an Economy cabin; if you want a seat with a bit more legroom you'll need to pay for a bulkhead seat. The IFE is all right; it can be a bit cranky on the 747s I fly from and to YVR but BA174 looks like it will be operated with a 777 so the IFE should be less temperamental.

I've been flying with BA for a very long time; unless things change dramatically I've no intention of reconsidering my relationship with the airline. I very much doubt you will find BA 'too bad to travel on'.

Syracuse, New York
2 posts
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2. Re: British airways - JFK to LHR and back

Thank you for taking the time to write the response; it was very helpful.

Edited: 13 July 2014, 03:44
3. Re: British airways - JFK to LHR and back

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Removed on: 13 July 2014, 10:07
Edited: 13 July 2014, 10:07
Hong Kong, China
Destination Expert
for Hong Kong, Osaka
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55,331 posts
158 reviews
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4. Re: British airways - JFK to LHR and back

There is nothing particularly good or bad about BA economy on this route. I have flown this route in business, WT+ and economy over the years. The economy service was very thoroughly described by T+ in #1. Overall, while you shouldn't expect anything royal about your experience, it won't be anything unbearable either.

Remember you can check-in online 24 hours before your flight's departure to choose your seat for free. If you are clearing immigration at LHR, a seat toward the front of the plane will at least make sure you beat a couple hundred people to the line.

Berkshire, England
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15,550 posts
60 reviews
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5. Re: British airways - JFK to LHR and back

I'm sure that BA economy is no better or worse than any other airlines economy product. The seats will be pretty cramped and the food will probably be awful but BA is certainly not too bad to travel on!!! I fly with them at least once a year and have never had anything to complain about with their service.

6. Re: British airways - JFK to LHR and back

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Removed on: 15 July 2015, 07:16