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BA 242 MEX/LHR, 1155pm departure, is F worth it?

BA 242 MEX/LHR, 1155pm departure, is F worth it?

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Old Jun 10, 15, 8:32 am
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BA 242 MEX/LHR, 1155pm departure, is F worth it?

Hey all, my wife and I are headed to Finland from Oklahoma City in mid September. We have an itinerary on hold with AA that includes BA 242 on Sept 10, MEX > LHR, depart at 1155pm and arrive around 430pm. 125k AA miles + $1000 in fees.

I'm second guessing booking the itinerary for a few reasons, and I'd like some comments if you have them.

1) No lounge access in MEX.

The flight leaves so late that all the lounges will be closed by the time our connecting flight from DFW arrives, leaving us little to do for the 3 hour layover and no way to get a good meal before the late boarding. I've read the lounges there aren't too great, but this will be my first lounge experience, and I was looking forward to it.

2) Meal service on a late flight..?

Here's where I'd like some input. From my experience in AA F, I'm imagining more limited options and more rushed service as most people in the cabin will want to get to sleep. I've heard the breakfast options aren't so great, but I could be wrong there. Half of what we'd be looking forward to in F is the eating/drinking, and I'm not sure we'd be able to take full advantage on this flight.

3) Late arrival in LHR / quick connection to Finland flight

A 430pm arrival into LHR means that the Arrivals lounge will be closed, which is something else I was looking forward to. The Finland flight leaves around 630pm, so I'm guessing that would leave us fairly minimal time to enjoy any other lounges too.

What thoughts / comments do people have? Should I go ahead and book this one, or hold out and hope that something else opens up between now and mid September?

Last edited by ValueAdd82; Jun 10, 15 at 8:56 am
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Old Jun 10, 15, 8:55 am
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You'll no doubt get a zillion other replies, but in order:

1) I'd be surprised if the BA lounge wasn't open in MEX until such time as the flight boards, and the last time I was there, it was OK

2) despite the late hour, you'll get a full meal service in F if you want it, so don't worry on that score

3) yes, the arrivals lounge is closed, but with that connection time, you don't want to go landside anyway. Arriving in F, you get the Concorde Room (assuming your next flight is on BA from T5), which should give you everything (and more) that you need from a lounge before your next flight.

Now you've explained you're going on to Helsinki, that flight leaves from terminal 3, so you won't get the Concorde Room sadly, but you will get BA's T3 lounges which again are perfectly nice
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Old Jun 10, 15, 9:01 am
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1. Can't help you there I'm afraid, perhaps a regular in MEX can comment on food there.

2. You can eat when you like in F. So you can ask them to serve the meals in a different order from the usual - just make it clear what you want later so they keep it for you. I have, for example, reversed the small and large meals on a daytime flight. F has ample catering on all flights. In your situation I would consider eating some of the "breakfast" before going to sleep then wake up and eat the "dinner" as a brunch before arrival.

3. You won't have too long but you ought to be able to get yourself a shower over in T3 GF and some food. Shower wait should be minimal. T3 GF is nice (nicer than the T5 GF) and overall you aren't missing out on much of the arrivals lounge experience when you're getting most of it in T3 GF. With a 2 hour connection I wouldn't risk going landside in any case.

So I think you can have pretty much as F an experience as you can from most other outstations, bearing the above points in mind.
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Old Jun 10, 15, 9:02 am
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Last time I used MEX BA did not have their own lounge but used AA. Well, it was a lounge but poor food and limited drink. If open the IB lounge is better.

But I may be well out of date on this!

Concorde Room in LHR T5 is great. Arrivals lounge if it were open is good for a bath but little else. If flight from T3 then the F lounge there is also very nice.
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Old Jun 10, 15, 9:06 am
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For point 3. Your transfer time between T5 and T3, even with a following wind, will be over an hour, maybe more. That won't give you much time to visit the GF lounge in T3 before you need to leave to board.
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Old Jun 10, 15, 9:07 am
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You have lounge access.
Even though it's a late departure they will be a full service, Mexicans eat late and I wouldn't expect a rushed service.
As I remember the food ex Mexico City is of a good quality.
You don't need the arrivals lounge as you will access to the BA First lounge in T3 while in transit.
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Old Jun 10, 15, 9:56 am
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1) I'd be very surprised if BA didn't have a contracted lounge to use. There is both an IB and AA lounge in the airport (plus at least one 3rd party lounge), and I guess you'd be able to use at least one, although none are particularly good. The rest of MEX airrisde is pretty glib.

2) MEX-LHR is a long flight, and if you want it, there will be a full F meal service available. A full breakfast will also be on offer in the morning. Quality of both meals varies and is unpredictable. I'm sure you'll be able to find something edible though.

3) You will have to change from T5 to T3 plus go through security (but not customs/immigration), which will probably eat up an hour or so giving just an hour in a lounge. In T3 you'll have a choice of 6 lounges, the first and business class sections from BA, CX and AA. If I were you, I'd head to the BA First lounge for a shower and whatever meal you feel like having. All lounges have showers and hot food. AA is probably the weakest of a good bunch.
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Old Jun 10, 15, 10:30 am
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Both IB and AA lounges at Mex are very poor for food and both are OK to spend time in but three hours will feel like an eternity.

Last edited by sorp222; Jun 10, 15 at 10:43 am Reason: spelling
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Old Jun 10, 15, 6:36 pm
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BA 242 MEX/LHR, 1155pm departure, is F worth it?

From what I understand, BA use Iberia's Plus lounge at MEX. I haven't experienced it myself but certainly that's what's indicated online.

BA tends to depart from the north end of T1 at MEX, which has two or three eateries selling light food and drinks, plus a few souvenir shops. It's an area shared by about 6-8 gates so it can be quite busy normally, but it might be a lot quieter at that time. Generally though, there's very little to do to be honest.

There is no connections service at MEX so you will have to clear customs and immigration upon arrival. You mention that you have a 3 hour layover, so I imagine you'll be arriving 8:30-9:00pm. It could be quite busy in immigration at that time, with the arrival of the European flights as well as other flights from less far afield. Bear in mind that this whole process might eat up at least an hour of your layover, maybe more.

There is a bigger range of eateries on the upper floor landslide at MEX, if you don't fancy venturing through security so early.

Last year I flew back from MEX on the 242. We left over an hour late at 11pm and whilst it is to be expected that we would still receive the planned service, it wasn't until 00:45 local time that we had dinner, so I believe the late departure will not affect the dinner service.

I hope that helps you make a more informed decision about your itinerary.

Incidentally, is there any reason why the 242 leaves MEX so late that night? It's normally a 9:45pm departure I think (or thereabouts).
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Old Jun 10, 15, 9:01 pm
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Originally Posted by ValueAdd82 View Post
Hey all, my wife and I are headed to Finland from Oklahoma City in mid September. We have an itinerary on hold with AA that includes BA 242 on Sept 10, MEX > LHR, depart at 1155pm and arrive around 430pm. 125k AA miles + $1000 in fees.

I'm second guessing booking the itinerary for a few reasons, and I'd like some comments if you have them.

1) No lounge access in MEX.

The flight leaves so late that all the lounges will be closed by the time our connecting flight from DFW arrives, leaving us little to do for the 3 hour layover and no way to get a good meal before the late boarding. I've read the lounges there aren't too great, but this will be my first lounge experience, and I was looking forward to it.

2) Meal service on a late flight..?

Here's where I'd like some input. From my experience in AA F, I'm imagining more limited options and more rushed service as most people in the cabin will want to get to sleep. I've heard the breakfast options aren't so great, but I could be wrong there. Half of what we'd be looking forward to in F is the eating/drinking, and I'm not sure we'd be able to take full advantage on this flight.

3) Late arrival in LHR / quick connection to Finland flight

A 430pm arrival into LHR means that the Arrivals lounge will be closed, which is something else I was looking forward to. The Finland flight leaves around 630pm, so I'm guessing that would leave us fairly minimal time to enjoy any other lounges too.

What thoughts / comments do people have? Should I go ahead and book this one, or hold out and hope that something else opens up between now and mid September?
If I were you, I would hold out for AA Z space TATL.
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Old Jun 13, 18, 12:00 am
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Can someone explain why one wouldn't be able to access the concord room if they are arriving on this flight out of MEX? Couldn't you just walk to it when you get off in T5?
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Old Jun 13, 18, 12:13 am
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Travel choices and route/cabin decisions are usually relative. What other main options are you thinking about?
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Old Jun 13, 18, 12:17 am
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Originally Posted by DrBernardo View Post
You'll no doubt get a zillion other replies, but in order:

Now you've explained you're going on to Helsinki, that flight leaves from terminal 3, so you won't get the Concorde Room sadly, but you will get BA's T3 lounges which again are perfectly nice
The Cathay First lounge a short stroll from the BA one in T3 is nicer, Also have the Qantas lounge with a lovely gin bar. And the AA lounge has some nice candy. Why not do a little tour!
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Old Jun 13, 18, 12:18 am
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Originally Posted by CiscoKid08 View Post
Can someone explain why one wouldn't be able to access the concord room if they are arriving on this flight out of MEX? Couldn't you just walk to it when you get off in T5?
Flight to Helsinki leaves from Terminal 3. So upon arrival at T5 the OP has to proceed to flight connections and get the bus over.
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Old Jun 13, 18, 12:23 am
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Originally Posted by CiscoKid08 View Post
Can someone explain why one wouldn't be able to access the concord room if they are arriving on this flight out of MEX? Couldn't you just walk to it when you get off in T5?
It's just because the OP connecting flight leaves from Terminal 3. There will be no access to Terminal 5 - and the CCR - without a BP for a flight departing from there.
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