I was quite happy that I finally had the chance to fly on the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. I was heading to London ie Heathrow Airport and onwards to Edinburgh. The airline of choice for such a route – British Airways (BA). I was also happy that I did not have to change terminals (and airline) for the switch and it happened to be the state-of-the-art Terminal 5 (shared by BA and Iberia Airlines only) at Heathrow.
The award-winning British Airways are the only airline to offer a four-class option (First, Club World business class, World Traveller Plus premium economy and World Traveller economy class) for this route on the 214-seater. It was Club World (only 35 seats) for me and that made the close to 13 hour flight go very smoothly and it seemed surprisingly fast.
The seats in Club World were very comfy and whatever position you decide to have your seat set-up in for a snooze/rest, it was quite restful. Including if it was converted into a 1.83m length bed. Lots of space between seats and a foot stool which can be set up to three different positions. Full marks there.
There is also an amenity kit with Elemis products, some storage space (for magazines, shoes and so on) and two USB sockets, next to a Britain/US/EU power socket and under the entertainment set screen handset. There is also a video RCA connection beneath the USB socket to enable passenger to connect their own digital equipment with the entertainment set display 12.1 inch screen.
My only little wish is a small space at arms reach to store your bottle of water!
However I’m still in a quandary, which part of the cabin I want my seat to be at. The configuration for Club World is 2:3:2 and there is a privacy screen which can be activated with one button to keep the seats separated. On my flight to Heathrow I was in the aisle seat in the 3-seater row. Easy access to the toilets and to the Club Kitchen (British Airways’ self service snack and refreshment area, which I didn’t really use as I was too well-fed, but more on that later).
But when my seat was in the bed position, that left no gap for anyone to walk in-between. And the passenger in the middle-seat had to basically cross over my stool seat, where my legs rested. And ever single time he bumped me. It’s a bit of a pain when you’re drifting off into slumberland to be jolted awake every single time.
On my return flight, I was in the middle seat which meant I was the one scrambling over the space on either side of the aisle. More often on one side when I needed to access my luggage in the large overhead compartment. My tip – try and get the seats by the window as they face each other so you don’t have to do any calisthenics.
But perhaps one needs those stretching exercises as its good for the blood flow and to burn some calories from being fed too much. The three-course meals were all served plated and the dishes were top-notch. There was complimentary bar-service so if you’re hankering for some bubbly just give the lovely cabin crew a buzz.
Service is top-notch and they were all very attentive, friendly and polite. The best of British courtesy indeed on this award-winning airline!
If you can’t sleep and need to be entertained or lulled into dreamland, try the more than 1,600 hours of programming available to passengers, including more than 130 of the latest Hollywood blockbusters and classic movies, more than 650 TV shows from around the world (including the very best in British content). And movies in many of the major languages. Yes, gamers, you have options too. And WiFi options if you need it too.
Big plus for the very comfortable headphones
I decided to get to Heathrow early for my return flight so I didn’t have to rush and to also enjoy the Gallery Club Lounge (for business class, as there is a separate one for First Class). I appreciated the fast track pass that took through Immigration and security super fast.
I’m not sure if I visibly gasped but the lounge at Terminal 5A South’s Concourse is massive – it can seat 800!
Whatever you want or need in a lounge is there – nice selection of food and drinks, plush and comfortable seating, showers, plug and USB points, speedy WiFi, and computer terminals, a cinema room and reading materials. And a business centre – always useful for those business-related trips.
Those vintage posters of British Airways advertisements were certainly a nice touch.
And if you need further pampering there is also the Elemis Spa, the travel spa – which provide a complimentary service and also offers a range of specialist grooming treatments for both men and women.
So yes, add another satisfied passenger to the long list.
British Airways, part of the oneworld alliance, operates daily non-stop flights to London from Kuala Lumpur.