BA Premium Economy

Old Apr 4, 15, 4:11 am
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BA Premium Economy

Decided to stop lurking and get involved in some conversation

Just a little background information before I get to the point of this thread...I joined Virgin's FFC and the BAEC last year after a monster hang over at Heathrow led to me enquiring at the Virgin upgrade desk about an upgrade from economy. A short conversation and 350 later I had a premium economy seat. After this experience I vowed to do everything possible to never fly economy again!. After a bit of research I took out the Virgin and BA black AMEX cards and have been avidly collecting points ever since.

Fast forward to this year and my friend and I decided we would book premium economy from the outset. The flight from LHR-DEN was wonderful as we were upgraded to CW! Not a bad way to get your first business class experience. We weren't so lucky on the return leg however and had to take our designated seats in WTP. I have to say I was thoroughly disappointed, these seats were a world away from my previous experience with PE on Virgin flights (I have done another PE return flight at this point) with the only obvious difference being slightly more leg room and the use of proper cutlery. Now I'm not a seat snob by any means, it's still a new experience and I appreciate all the little differences that can make a flight more comfortable but I was really struggling to see what the extra money paid for. Had we not gotten our flights in a sale I would have felt ripped off.

I'm just wondering if I had a bad experience or is WTP severely lacking when compared to Virgin's PE? I have been thinking about ditching either Virgin or BA as I would be better off putting all my eggs in one basket and as much as I like the Virgin experience there is no escaping the fact the BAEC is a far better loyalty programme when you add a partner into the equation. My thinking is that if I'm paying I will fly PE but points will be used for either Biz or F but I'm starting to try and justify paying for CW or F as based on that experience, PE is simply not worth the money with British Airways.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 4:19 am
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I think, to get a decent answer, you need to be a little more specific about what you felt was lacking?

If it's the seat - I think DEN is serviced on a 777 - which means you'd be on the latest WTP seat - so you'd have to mark that as 'not changing'.

If it's service - you'd need to be more specific about where you felt it was lacking to compare.

M.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 4:26 am
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Most people would with an extra 7 inches which is how much more legroom you have in WT plus and it's the same as Virgin.
The seat is wider, you get a CW hot meal option, pre takeoff drinks, newspaper, hot towels and an extra baggage allowance, so I don't think its a rip off at all.
I do know that Virgin have a better meal offering so I guess you make make your choice on that.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 4:26 am
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Cannot compare PE across the two as have only done this in VS and CW on BA. However, if CW is your preference then give ex-EU a look. You will probably find you can get CW for the same price if not less than PE when flying direct even without sale fares. You can still UuA these if booked direct with BA.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 4:33 am
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Originally Posted by MPH1980 View Post
I think, to get a decent answer, you need to be a little more specific about what you felt was lacking?

If it's the seat - I think DEN is serviced on a 777 - which means you'd be on the latest WTP seat - so you'd have to mark that as 'not changing'.

If it's service - you'd need to be more specific about where you felt it was lacking to compare.

M.
Sorry, I guess I'm trying not to be too much of a pedant but my main issue is that I didn't find the seat very comfortable and to me it felt no different to an economy seat with slightly more leg room. Also, it was just a normal arm rest between the seats as opposed to the extra room you get with Virgin.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 4:38 am
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Originally Posted by madfish View Post
Cannot compare PE across the two as have only done this in VS and CW on BA. However, if CW is your preference then give ex-EU a look. You will probably find you can get CW for the same price if not less than PE when flying direct even without sale fares. You can still UuA these if booked direct with BA.
That's fantastic, thanks. I thought I'd read everything out there on saving money on flights.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 4:40 am
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Originally Posted by Amtexfly View Post
Sorry, I guess I'm trying not to be too much of a pedant but my main issue is that I didn't find the seat very comfortable and to me it felt no different to an economy seat with slightly more leg room. Also, it was just a normal arm rest between the seats as opposed to the extra room you get with Virgin.
So taking back what I said earlier - I've just checked the fleet guide and the recent planes to/from DEN.

There's a lot of planes flying back and forth using the older style WTP seat (like this: http://www.airreview.com/BA/BA-777-WTP.jpg)

There is a new generation WTP seat which (personally) I find more comfortable - looks like this http://www.jaunted.com/pages/upload/...image-7318.jpg

I agree - the older seats could do with a refresh.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 4:52 am
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I also found the WTP seats underwhelming on the older fleet (747s). I haven't had an opportunity to fly WTP on, say, the A380 which I have heard are miles away from WT in terms of comfort and the IFE.

Personally, I think a better deal would be to simply pay extra for an infinite leg room exit rows seats in WT (if you can get them). I would choose one in an instant over a WTP seat on an older plane (unless in an exit row in WTP - or the famous throne seat which I was lucky to occupy on a PEK-LHR flight).
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Old Apr 4, 15, 4:55 am
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Welcome to Flyertalk Amtexfly

Welcome to Flyertalk Amtexfly and welcome to the BA forum. There is apparently a similar forum for Virgin somewhere around here too! I hope that you will continue to participate here, welcome on board.

As hinted above, it makes a big difference which aircraft type you were on. The 747s have the worst WTP product, the 787 and 380s have the best, according to many. The 777 is also in the "better" category. Also, as a very general impression, BA staff returning overnight from USA to the UK tend to be a bit lower on their energy levels compared to the outbound day time flights.

I doubt one airline/alliance will completely deal with all your needs, but it does make sense to have one airline's scheme as your approx 80% focus. The worst approach, in my view, is to scatter point and miles across too many schemes.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 5:01 am
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Originally Posted by MPH1980 View Post
So taking back what I said earlier - I've just checked the fleet guide and the recent planes to/from DEN.

There's a lot of planes flying back and forth using the older style WTP seat (like this: http://www.airreview.com/BA/BA-777-WTP.jpg)

There is a new generation WTP seat which (personally) I find more comfortable - looks like this http://www.jaunted.com/pages/upload/...image-7318.jpg

I agree - the older seats could do with a refresh.
Yeah that is the style of seat I flew in, which in my opinion paled in comparison to this http://i.ytimg.com/vi/cOzryXhgwa8/maxresdefault.jpg.

So to answer my original question, the old WTP is out dated but BA have a better WT product on newer flights?
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Old Apr 4, 15, 5:05 am
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It's good to know that I may have seen the worst of the bunch and that a better product is out there. Do people go as far as to check the aircraft before booking to decide if your going WT or stumping up the extra for CW?
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Old Apr 4, 15, 5:28 am
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Originally Posted by Amtexfly View Post
Do people go as far as to check the aircraft before booking to decide if your going WT or stumping up the extra for CW?
If you're trying to decide between WT, WT+ and CW, aircraft type may indeed influence your decision (but the fare difference (!) is likely to be far more important).

I flew to BNE in Y+ a couple of years ago and made sure to book the LHR-SIN leg on BA15 as it meant I'd be on the 77W and hence get the new WT+ seat. I could have paid more for J, but didn't feel it was worth it.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 5:33 am
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Obviously YMMV does apply to everyone.

I try to fly WT+ with BA to/from Europe and North America whenever I can I simply HATE economy seats and sometimes need a (prescribed for pain) Lorazopan to put up with the situation.

I am 6'5" and just over 105 kg and have a (healed) busted right knee. I am willing to pay for additional leg room/pitch. The extra comfort in the seats (because of padding/softness) is IMHO just perception.

I quite liked the old 747 WT+ seats. Similarly, I prefer 777 seats to Airbus (A3XX) seats. I simply DESPISE A380 seats because of their LACK of adequate pitch. My sons (both over 6') have flown the A380 and they also prefer the 777 seats because of the pitch. New is not always better

Between the Arabian gulf region and Asia/Australia BA does not fly so I cannot do WT+ with them. Thus, I try to fly UL or AI in J class because of the legroom, knowing IFE is poor. Between KUL and Australia I have flown Air Asia in business class, strictly for the seats. This summer I will fly MH (and bid for) and hope for an upgrade to business simply for the legroom. Time will tell, but I have stopped taking Lorazepam Oh, FWIW, I fly for pleasure and on my own dime - if that matters.
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Old Apr 4, 15, 5:48 am
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Two friends who often fly WTP were impressed with the new seats on the 777-300 on the flight to SYD compared to the old seat.

They were even more impressed with CW when they took advantage of a POUG on the return!
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Old Apr 4, 15, 5:57 am
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These are some interesting points when comparing both airlines premium economy cabins. I have flown both recently and also been seated in extra legroom seats in economy and in my opinion taking into account my height (6' 3") the extra legroom seats in economy win every time, but they need to be exit row seats as opposed to bulk heads so you can maximum room. It can be challenging booking the extra legroom seats so that is a bit hit and miss and obviously depends on availability at the time of your booking. A better meal or entertainment system doesn't really swing it for me plus depending on which seat you choose in premium you could have one of those lovely video boxes under the seat in front of you restricting leg room.

Obviously the best thing to do is to travel business but my company shudders at that thought and restricts us to a premium economy seat, however some intelligent searching as some else points out can mean the price difference is minimal.
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