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Crew unable to offer bassinet in NF on a 747?

Crew unable to offer bassinet in NF on a 747?

Old Aug 18, 16, 3:24 pm
  #1  
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Unhappy Crew unable to offer bassinet in NF on a 747?

My wife and I travelled back from DEN this week with our two children in F.

Being a night flight, we had specifically pre-selected seats 5A, 5E & 5F, with my wife assigned to 5F with our 9-month old daughter. I understood this was the designated bassinet position in NF on a 747-400???

Upon boarding we asked a member of cabin crew if the bassinet cot could please be provided soon after take-off, as we were keen to ensure my daughter slept as much as possible – and to minimise ‘disruption’ for the rest of the cabin. After take-off, the member of cabin crew looking after us came and explained that in the NF cabin, there is no bassinet fixing provided and therefore infant cots are not offered for F infant passengers.

I explained that I believed this to be incorrect and pointed out the bassinet mounting positions on the seat structure at 5F (fixing positions which are not on any other seat in the cabin). I also pointed out that the BA online check-in seat map had shown 5F as being the ‘cot position’.

She went away and checked with her CSM, but she then came back to explain that he could not find anything in the "on-board manual" (they have a Haynes guide???) to show that a bassinet was available in NF. And therefore, regardless of whether the fixing points were in the seat at 5F or not, they could not attempt to fix the bassinet in place as they had "never been trained how to do it."

So - happy to be proven wrong - but I'm sure there is a bassinet offered in NF at 5F, (rather than in the first row in OF)? Anyone have any experience of using this? I'm sure I've seen a pic of this 'set-up' somewhere...

We'd have booked Club for the night-flight return if we'd known it wasn't offered in F. Caught us by surprise and didn't make for the comfiest of flights home, given it was a 'sleeping' flight...
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Old Aug 18, 16, 4:07 pm
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Here's the 777 version and CIHY saying it's 5F on a 747:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/briti...rst-777-a.html

But also note the comment that the crew on one flight couldn't find the bassinet.
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Old Aug 19, 16, 3:40 am
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Thanks for that flatlander - most interesting...
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Old Aug 19, 16, 4:05 am
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5F is most certainly a bassinet position on the 747 - we have used in on numerous occasions over the last 2-3 years. The crew have to install some form of a large 'table' (for want of a better word) in the pointy end of the seat (which means that the IFE screen cannot be moved anymore), and the child seat is then locked in on top.
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Old Aug 19, 16, 5:50 am
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That's really interesting to know - thank you for confirming so.

I was just amazed to be told by the crew that there wasn't a bassinet position on a 744, and then when I pointed it out and showed them the fixings, to be told they'd never been trained how to use it and their on-board manual made no reference to it... As an aside, it was a Mixed Fleet crew.

There was a spare seat in the cabin, at 5K, which they said we could put my daughter in to sleep. All very well, but a 9-month old in a lie-flat First seat isn't particularly safe. We put her in it, but she slipped her legs out of the seatbelt in no time and so my wife had to watch her constantly from 5F to ensure she wasn't about to roll out and onto the floor. Plus, we were told each time the seat-belt sign came on mid-flight (which it did), she needed to be picked up and put on my wife's lap, with the infant belt, again. Which woke her, and made things really difficult. So all in all, it didn't make for a relaxing flight for us nor the other passengers - despite our best efforts and intentions.

We appreciate flying with a baby is never going to be a doddle, but in the F cabin, you expect to have simple things like access to the bassinet which you've selected on purpose.

Suffice to say we were more than a little disappointed.
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Old Aug 19, 16, 6:54 am
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Originally Posted by 747_not_777 View Post
Plus, we were told each time the seat-belt sign came on mid-flight (which it did), she needed to be picked up and put on my wife's lap, with the infant belt, again. Which woke her, and made things really difficult. So all in all, it didn't make for a relaxing flight for us nor the other passengers - despite our best efforts and intentions.
As I understand it, that is indeed what the safety rules require for lap infants. If and as long as the seat belt sign is on (for whatever reason - take-off, landing, turbulence, etc.), they have to be strapped in with an adult and cannot remain in the bassinet.

On our last flight (from JFK to LHR in early July), when the seat belt signs went on mid-flight, the very proactive crew member who had been providing terrific service to us all along contacted the flight crew immediately to check what was up and then let us know that we did not need to take our baby in our lap as the seat belt sign would go off again very shortly (as it indeed did).
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Old Aug 19, 16, 7:05 am
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Unbelievable the crew wouldnt set up the bassinet in F. Poor show.
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Old Aug 19, 16, 7:14 am
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Most definitely exists and we used it many times.

Although, if a seat is available, using the cot on the bed, with the seat belt over it works well. In the event of seat belt signs coming on, you must still hold your child, however.
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Old Aug 19, 16, 7:35 am
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I cannot believe that the crew hadn't been trained to set up the bassinet, as said poor show especially from the CSM.
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Old Aug 19, 16, 7:59 am
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Originally Posted by brightstar100 View Post
Most definitely exists and we used it many times.

Although, if a seat is available, using the cot on the bed, with the seat belt over it works well. In the event of seat belt signs coming on, you must still hold your child, however.
We weren't offered the cot to even put on the bed. Plus they were short of F bedding for the flight, so put down a couple of Club World blankets folded over, and we lay her on that.

Originally Posted by Can I help you View Post
I cannot believe that the crew hadn't been trained to set up the bassinet, as said poor show especially from the CSM.
Glad you agree. I don't think I've ever written to BA to complain before, but I have on this occasion. As it was far from being a premium experience.

It had all been going so well - we gave my daughter her evening meal in the lounge, boarded early and asked the crew to heat her milk for her as we had a 7.40pm departure and she has her final feed of the day between 7 and 8pm. So we were looking good in terms of routine and getting her to sleep. She wolfed her milk down, and then fell asleep on my wife's lap for take-off...

But instead of the bassinet arriving post take-off, we had this whole debacle about whether it was offered in F or not. Faced with a choice of keeping her on my wife's lap vs the lie-flat seat, we opted to keep her asleep on my wife's lap. Which she did for 90 mins, but when she woke (clearly not the most comfortable position for either of them for an all-nighter), we tried her on the life-flat seat at 5K. She hated it and screamed the cabin down so much that my wife and I picked her up and stood in the galley for an hour calming her down. A nice passenger from WTP, also with kids, even came up and offered Tylenol (?) to help calm her, but we'd already been 'bad parents' and given her a Calpol minutes earlier whilst standing in the galley... to try and help her settle.

Finally, about four hours into the flight we got her to sleep at 5K and then my wife stayed up and played the watching game to check she didn't roll-off the seat, and to handle the seat-belt sign 'pick-ups'...

I understand totally that bassinets are subject to availability, and if everyone boarded with a baby not everyone could have one. But we had the only baby in F, we'd booked the right seat, and we even corrected the crew and showed them where it was to be fitted. And they still couldn't manage it!

As an aside, would love to see a copy of the CSM's 'manual' for a 744. Anyone got a copy!?
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Old Aug 19, 16, 8:27 am
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I cannot show you a copy but I can assure you that it's there, by the way we carry Calpol.
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Old Aug 19, 16, 8:32 am
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Originally Posted by Can I help you View Post
I cannot show you a copy but I can assure you that it's there, by the way we carry Calpol.
Had no idea you had Calpol on board! Question is, have the crew been trained in how to use it???
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Old Aug 19, 16, 9:58 am
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This is a sorry tale and goes to show how very disruptive it was for this family and by the sound of it affecting the whole cabin too. Very stressful all round. Is the crew training so insufficient that no crew member out of 13 or 14 could do it? So surprised by this story.
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Old Aug 19, 16, 11:12 am
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'Training' does seem a cop out.. on a recent PMI flight I wanted to drop the arm rest table in CE so my 2 year old could take a chance at napping (fat chance in reality..) only to be told it's a ground crew thing and they don't have training.

It took me 1 whole minute to figure it out myself
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Old Aug 19, 16, 4:38 pm
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Very poor.
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