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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:11 am   #1
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FT Exclusive: *LIVE* BA001 LCY-JFK Trip Report 30 Sept 09

As you'll no doubt be aware, British Airways’ new, flagship service from London to New York departed from City Airport, en route for JFK, for the very first time just about an hour ago.

Sadly, I’m not on board it .

In better news, I will be tomorrow .

I’m very possibly even more excited than I was on 7th August 1981, which was the day before my first ever flight, aged 7, on a midnight Air Malta charter to Luqa from Newcastle. The sausage served was, I distinctly remember, just like HIDDY’s.

Anyway, as soon as the much-heralded On Air in-flight internet service is activated, I’ll be Twittering and Facebooking to a few folks, but I thought that the people who would really be most interested would be fellow FTers, especially since some of the first mass-media Tweets etc are of the usually lamentably poor quality. The Times reported a moment ago that 'The cabin is the same as normal club world, just newer'.

However there’s only so much value in me telling you what I happen to notice though through my tears of unbridled joy, so I thought that I’d give FTers almost 24 hours notice of the trip. That'll allow you to ask the questions that you’re most interested in and I can then look out for and post the answers from LCY and the aircraft itself. Of course, if you have questions while I’m in the air, then you can keep asking them and I’ll answer (subject to the flight time being long enough!) LIVE and in real time.

In the meantime: yippee!

To ease viewing, this link will take you directly to the first post of the TR proper.

Photos and consolidated TR now posted here.

Or, skip straight to my overall, personal verdict here.

Thanks!

Last edited by continentalclub; Oct 3, 09 at 11:36 am Reason: Navigation Updates
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:13 am   #2
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Just so you know....

Before I start posting though, I think itís imperative that I mention a couple of things and answer a couple of questions before you wily and incisive FTers quite justifiably ask them.

Firstly, Iíll try as much as possible to describe the service objectively in my posts. When I make more subjective comment, it will be my own personal opinion and Iíll try to remember to flag it as such.

Secondly, Iím paying for all the parts of the trip myself, other than the flight LCY-JFK and back. As part of my professional life, I look after a number of people for whom the new service could be of immense interest and of both personal and professional value. BA is interested in my views and they will receive them in full. They have invited me on board and now know of the existence of this thread. Theyíll not be paying for the web access on board!

Thirdly, I am personally and professionally broadly well-disposed towards the airline, but they (and many of you) will know that I have been clear in my criticism of and concerns regarding various aspects of their service and product from time to time. I post that criticism (and praise, where due) here, elsewhere and communicate it directly through any other relevant official channels. This year, Iíve flown with EZ, BD, SQ, NZ, LX, QF and US on multiple occasions, quite apart from BA. LX F was, in particular, a real highlight. Please feel free to have a look at my blog (my signature is the link) if you want further background on some of those flights and my thoughts on them.

Lastly, I should tell you that I am so excited that I could almost wee, so Iíll hand over to you now and say Ďbring on the questionsí!
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:17 am   #3
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Originally Posted by continentalclub View Post
Secondly, I’m paying for all the parts of the trip myself, other than the flight LCY-JFK and back.
ie the DLR ticket to LCY and the subway ticket from JFK?!

Actually, one of our number is meant to be on todays flight.
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:20 am   #4
  
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Why wait until tomorrow? I've just received an e-mail from williewalsh@37000ft.com, sent from his seat on BA001 "somewhere over the Atlantic".
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:23 am   #5
  
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Why wait until tomorrow? I've just received an e-mail from williewalsh@37000ft.com, sent from his seat on BA001 "somewhere over the Atlantic".
Indeed - Except by my calculations when he sent it to me he was somewhere over Ireland descending in to SNN .. so he got that bit of geography slightly wrong
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:23 am   #6
  
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I put this on the other thread as well, so apologies for that.

Having just come back from the launch, I suspect there are some FTs on board who will be posting, but in the meantime, here are some pictures from this morning at LCY
http://www.businesstraveller.com/new...cy-jfk-flights
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:29 am   #7
  
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Originally Posted by Tom Otley View Post
I put this on the other thread as well, so apologies for that.

Having just come back from the launch, I suspect there are some FTs on board who will be posting, but in the meantime, here are some pictures from this morning at LCY
http://www.businesstraveller.com/new...cy-jfk-flights
"Page not found"!

No comment.................
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:31 am   #8
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Originally Posted by EvilDoctorK View Post
Indeed - Except by my calculations when he sent it to me he was somewhere over Ireland descending in to SNN .. so he got that bit of geography slightly wrong
Quite, I was just looking at my watch and thinking the very same thing! Having said that, the inaugural has apparently arrived SNN early.

Meanwhile, Raffles, you raise a relevant and more detailed point. My closest airport is MME, which lost its BD LHR link in March. This means that, potentially, BA J travellers from, say, Doncaster to Darlington would find the train to KGX, followed by CWLCY, the fastest way from home to JFK. Obviously there's no Y,W or F option, but it may be a quirky little submarket.

Anyway, on that basis, there are more than a few collateral costs beyond the DLR, but they're ones that I've no shame in saying that I'm delighted to be stumping up for this experience ,
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:36 am   #9
  
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Quite positive coverage in German online magazine

www.spiegel.de, one of Germany's more reputable news sources, just posted a rather upbeat article about the flight ("with return fares of Ä 2.200").

http://www.spiegel.de/reise/aktuell/...652072,00.html

As part of the same article, they actually correctly summarized the pay-for-your-seat rules in one paragraph, including the fact that OLCI provides seat allocation still free.
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:43 am   #10
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Look forward to reading your updates continentalclub especially about the Shannon stop....I think that could be the 'make or break' part of this routes future.
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:46 am   #11
  
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Sorry

http://www.businesstraveller.com/new...cy-jfk-flights
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:46 am   #12
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*humph*... not speaking to you any more...
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:47 am   #13
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Originally Posted by OPebble View Post
"Page not found"!

No comment.................
In fairness to Tom Otley, I think he's fallen foul of the 'cut and paste a link' bug on FT. FT often displays commuted versions of links, which won't work when pasted.

His original link, on the other thread, does indeed work:

http://www.businesstraveller.com/new...cy-jfk-flights
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:48 am   #14
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Originally Posted by BingBongBoy View Post
*humph*... not speaking to you any more...
Another upside to this trip, then .
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Old Sep 29, 09, 7:50 am   #15
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Another upside to this trip, then .
where is that crying smiley... heart... ripped... out... on... stamped... been...

*cry* *cry* *cry*...
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