In (partial) defense of CW

Old Mar 31, 17, 5:33 am
  #16  
 
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maybe I'm just lucky with my routings, but I have never had a problem getting a decent enough CW seat even on tickets booked 2-3 days before travel...the occasional run I have had to do in an aisle seat back from JFK is, I agree, a much inferior experience - but I can generally get a seat that's OK even at short notice...


I should probably say that, for the real short notice ones, I often end up in First as the fares can be lower than Club...which also helps
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Old Mar 31, 17, 6:10 am
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Originally Posted by obduro View Post
As for the buying a ticket last minute...well that's not really got anything to do with the product has it?
I'm steering clear of commenting on BA's products generally these days, but this point in particular has *everything* to do with the product.

The point is a last minute traveler facing, say, a reverse herringbone layout doesn't really have a *bad* seat to be put in, missing the window seat is unfortunate but not the end of the world. The same traveler flying in CW is potentially in for a totally different experience, with definite seats to avoid which will be largely what's left at the last minute on popular (and therefore expensive) routes.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 6:15 am
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Originally Posted by smokie36 View Post
Yes experience has taught me to go to the kitchen early and grab a sandwich and some crisps since they never load enough for everyone.
It's not quite possible with HKG-LHR for example as one may sleep for hours before heading to the kitchen.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 6:34 am
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I used to love CW when I first started flying long haul, about 15 years ago. The upgrade to new CW seemed like a major step up and 'Raiding the larder' was always a treat - in every sense of the word.

Howeber, since I've flown AnotherAirline in business, I just don't think the CW seat compares any more. And the AA equivalent of the CW kitchen is far superior.

That said, the service in CW is generally still better and the main courses (but only the main courses) are probably also better.

Overall tho, I'm afraid I'm no longer as excited about flying CW as the OP, or as I used to be.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 6:38 am
  #20  
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Originally Posted by lost_in_translation View Post
I'm steering clear of commenting on BA's products generally these days, but this point in particular has *everything* to do with the product.

The point is a last minute traveler facing, say, a reverse herringbone layout doesn't really have a *bad* seat to be put in, missing the window seat is unfortunate but not the end of the world. The same traveler flying in CW is potentially in for a totally different experience, with definite seats to avoid which will be largely what's left at the last minute on popular (and therefore expensive) routes.
Well yes except that they tend to have foot coffins in the reverse herringbone formation which some people (myself included) absolutely hate. So on that score every seat is a *bad* seat. YMMV
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Old Mar 31, 17, 6:49 am
  #21  
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On the 744s 14AK and 62/64AK are outstanding -- you don't need F if you have those seats.

In terms of Club Kitchen, my flights to and from EWR/JFK - I don't think there is anything other than chips and chocolates anymore Eastbound, and Westbound I thought it was about the same. I was told westbound Club Kitchen only has sandwiches to NYC at certain times of day. I think the hot food was removed along time ago.

Compared to QR 777s - they J seems much wider - and if you don't have somebody next to you, it's nice.

QR's food service - quality and quantity - as well as snacks are far ahead of BA from my experience - but perhaps they have a different offering on US-DOH flights than shorter flights to the UK.

Overall, the CW seats for many years with far ahead of anything else -- it is only recently that other airlines have caught up and in cases passed the CW seating by. CW is not state of the art - it's also not bad. That said, BA could do a better job cleaning its cabins.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 9:30 am
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I've tried to express my love for the CW seat (in particular the 747 UD A/K seats) in various threads on the topic before, stating that the superior seat is why I always choose BA over AA on transatlantic night flights. I've always been met with disbelief, because everyone seems to love the AA business seats, but for me there's no contest - on AA the seats are too firm, the footwell is too narrow, and there's no privacy.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 10:12 am
  #23  
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I actually like the *good* seats on CW. The seat is not the problem. I may even prefer the privacy of CW to F or other airline's reverse herringbone.

The issue is the inconsistency of the service, the decline of the soft product and the des-integration of customer service when things go south. The 'we do not really apologise' culture is the latest incarnation of the loss of focus on the customer for me. To be honest, QR is 10x worse at CS but they have less to apologise for.

It may look like I will do about 6 commutes per year to (or rather from) Sydney soon-ish but there is no way I will choose BA as my carrier of choice. It will probably be CX as they seem to understand CS.

PS: I agree that this part of FT has become very adversarial, hence I don't post very much anymore (OMNI/PR is almost friendlier) and my post is not to be understood as either supportive of BA or bashing BA. We all have a choice and we choose what we love.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 10:27 am
  #24  
 
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My main route the past year and a half is London-Australia/NZ in business roughly every 3 months and so I've done quite a few options beyond CW, including CX, QR, QF, TG, SQ, NZ, VS/NZ as well as mixed AY/BA, OS/TG, LX/QF or CX.

CW is not the best, but it is definitely not the worst. QF A380 "flat" Skybeds, TG's angle lie flat seats on 747s and 777s (and the grim lounges at BKK) and the very mixed service on QR all rank below CW. CX seats and lounges are better, but on board catering is poor recently. SQ is generally excellent, but I much prefer the BA and QF lounges at SIN over the tired crowded Silver Kris lounges. NZ is good too, but to go all the way means LAX transit and it is generally pricey.

CW is ok, its strength is consistency, its weakness is hard product that means many seats are undesirable (aisle seats are very exposed, middle seats are too close to others except upper deck A380), and storage is poor. I can sleep in CW which is the main point in my view. Working is ok, but basically I choose on price. I have a limit in budget for long haul business on this route (sometimes it means going ex.EU) so I go CW if it is competitive. However, I'll generally make the trade-off on price and schedule, and if I can't get seats 16A/K on LHR-SYD on 777s, then I'll probably not bother.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 10:44 am
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**removed reply as I reply to the wrong thread, lol**

Last edited by cysyuen; Mar 31, 17 at 11:22 am
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Old Mar 31, 17, 10:56 am
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Isn't having an aisle seat much better than being wedged mid-row between the seat next to you and the curvature of the fusilage of a 777, where you have to step over someone sleeping flat just to use the washroom?
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Old Mar 31, 17, 10:58 am
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Club kitchen is "well stocked"? I remember when it used to be and the onboard menu even invited guests to "raid the larder". Now there's absolutely nothing to raid!

All I find are crisps, fruit, popcorn and chocs. And yes an occasional uneaten cold appetiser or salad from the earlier meal serving.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 11:23 am
  #28  
 
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I agree with the general comments, AK seats are great, the rest suck. Club kitchen always disappears towards the end of the flight. Crew I have mixed feelings about, sometimes very slow to serve meals, sometimes talk amongst themselves and seem annoyed if I interrupt to ask for something, sometimes lack common sense to leave the bottle of water in my seat when I am in the lav and have to track them down, and other minor annoyances.
My latest company pet peeve is asking me "IF" I want the amenity kit...I am guessing another great cost-cutting move? I expect the next iteration to be "You don't really need the amenity kit, do you?", followed by "Please tell me how you will benefit from an amenity kit and you may get one", lol...
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Old Mar 31, 17, 11:32 am
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Originally Posted by carrotjuice View Post
Club kitchen is "well stocked"? I remember when it used to be and the onboard menu even invited guests to "raid the larder". Now there's absolutely nothing to raid!

All I find are crisps, fruit, popcorn and chocs. And yes an occasional uneaten cold appetiser or salad from the earlier meal serving.
I totally agree with this, used to be good but not anymore now in my opinion.

Also the seat comparison with a Qatar 777 is fair and I guess I would prefer CW but not over the Dreamliner, A350 or A380.

Additionaly I find QR staff very friendly (I had several wonderful chats with them) and they did a personal welcome each flight.

My experience differs from the OP.
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Old Mar 31, 17, 1:35 pm
  #30  
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I agree there's still plenty shelf life in the CW seat. AA are still sending 2-3-2 config sloping J seats down to S America last I heard and across the Atlantic on certain routes as well many years after BA had all lie flat.

I don't like the middle middle CW seats but my wife does as will many others no doubt.
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