BA flight to Austin Texas

Old Jan 13, 19, 3:43 pm
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BA flight to Austin Texas

Hi,
​​​​​​I am looking to fly to Texas around September/October time. One of the options I am considering is the BA service to Austin.

Can any of you BA experts give me any info on the Boeing 747 which is used on this route. I understand it is likely to be older planes which have not been refurbished. Is that correct? And if so, just how uncomfortable is it likely to be in economy (and I appreciate that is a bit subjective). And I assume the IFE will be on the poor side? I also read that BA may switch to 777s on this route at some stage. Can anybody throw any light on this?

Grateful for any advice.
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Old Jan 13, 19, 4:39 pm
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The LHR-AUS route is currently being flown by a 777-300ER but, will switch back to a 747 for the summer. It will most likely be a mid-J aircraft and, in September/October, you should have around a 50% chance of a refurbished aircraft with updated IFE.
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Old Jan 14, 19, 6:33 am
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Thank you TedToToe. That's very helpful. A 50% chance of a refurbished is not good enough for me. So sadly it looks like I shall probably give BA a miss. After I posted my question I looked at some of the comments on the old BA 747s in this very forum. And it seems that some of the BA747s are in a woeful state. We struggle on these long flights in economy at the best of times, so the prospect of 10 or so hours in a decrepit 747 does not appeal. I flew on a United 787 last year and the newer plane definitely made it more bearable. Talking of United, can I assume a United 777 (a 200 to Houston) will be significantly better than an old non refurbished BA 747? Grateful for any comments.

Just as an aside. I read some of the press reports on BA switching to a 747 from a 787 on the London Austin route. Obviously BA were trying to spin it as some sort of upgrade. A chance to fly the "Queen of the Skies".
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Old Jan 14, 19, 6:47 am
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Originally Posted by HenleyBoy View Post
Talking of United, can I assume a United 777 (a 200 to Houston) will be significantly better than an old non refurbished BA 747?
I certainly would not think so. I often do IAH-LHR, and would even pick an unreferbished 747 and a UA 772 service personally. While AA and DL have caught up to BA in terms of their hard products in transatlantic Y, UA still lags IMHO.

This is my opinion. If you need to get to AUS, take the direct LHR-AUS flight with BA. Not even an old product (which still is a possibility) can outweigh the benefits of a direct service to your destination. If you want to fly to IAH, I believe the first BA flight of the day (the 194/195 services) are scheduled to be on a 789 for the summer season (and have the new cabin).

You could of course, connect at ORD/DFW/CLT/JFK and connect on American to get to Austin?
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Old Jan 14, 19, 6:51 am
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Originally Posted by HenleyBoy View Post
Thank you TedToToe. That's very helpful. A 50% chance of a refurbished is not good enough for me. So sadly it looks like I shall probably give BA a miss. After I posted my question I looked at some of the comments on the old BA 747s in this very forum. And it seems that some of the BA747s are in a woeful state. We struggle on these long flights in economy at the best of times, so the prospect of 10 or so hours in a decrepit 747 does not appeal. I flew on a United 787 last year and the newer plane definitely made it more bearable. Talking of United, can I assume a United 777 (a 200 to Houston) will be significantly better than an old non refurbished BA 747? Grateful for any comments.

Just as an aside. I read some of the press reports on BA switching to a 747 from a 787 on the London Austin route. Obviously BA were trying to spin it as some sort of upgrade. A chance to fly the "Queen of the Skies".
I'd take an iPad before a connection.

Any change, the associated bag pick up, re-check, security, other associated stresses, before you even consider the bare minimum of a couple of hours extra journey time are in no way worth a decent video screen when you can bring your own so easilly.

I'd choose 3-4-3 on a 747 before 3-4-3 on a 777 any day of the week too
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Old Jan 14, 19, 6:52 am
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Originally Posted by HenleyBoy View Post

Just as an aside. I read some of the press reports on BA switching to a 747 from a 787 on the London Austin route. Obviously BA were trying to spin it as some sort of upgrade. A chance to fly the "Queen of the Skies".
Read the reviews of the BA 787 in economy and you'll probably understand why it's seen as an upgrade.
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Old Jan 14, 19, 6:53 am
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Originally Posted by HenleyBoy View Post
Thank you TedToToe. That's very helpful. A 50% chance of a refurbished is not good enough for me. So sadly it looks like I shall probably give BA a miss. After I posted my question I looked at some of the comments on the old BA 747s in this very forum. And it seems that some of the BA747s are in a woeful state. We struggle on these long flights in economy at the best of times, so the prospect of 10 or so hours in a decrepit 747 does not appeal. I flew on a United 787 last year and the newer plane definitely made it more bearable. Talking of United, can I assume a United 777 (a 200 to Houston) will be significantly better than an old non refurbished BA 747? Grateful for any comments.

Just as an aside. I read some of the press reports on BA switching to a 747 from a 787 on the London Austin route. Obviously BA were trying to spin it as some sort of upgrade. A chance to fly the "Queen of the Skies".
To be fair, the 'Queen of the Skies' does look very impressive, from the outside anyway, and will probably be much bigger and more beautiful than any other aircraft at Austin. That said I can understand if the interior isn't refurbed it makes for a less comfortable journey.

However a few thoughts of mine: 10 across on a 747 is more spacious than 10 across on a 777 or 9 across on a 787, poor IFE could be mitigated by a pre loaded device or good book, the flight is non-stop, and 747s fly faster than most other aircraft which will shave off another 15 mins or so.
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Old Jan 14, 19, 6:56 am
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I’d take a wider seat before I’d take any 787 in economy. The improved air quality and IFE won’t fix your battered leg and twisted shoulders.
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Old Jan 14, 19, 7:42 am
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Originally Posted by BA0197 View Post
If you want to fly to IAH, I believe the first BA flight of the day (the 194/195 services) are scheduled to be on a 789 for the summer season (and have the new cabin).
Not so sure that is true. I am booked on the morning flight to IAH in July and it was originally showing as a 777 at the point of booking (November), and then literally a couple of weeks later I got a seat change notification and was DELIGHTED to find it was a 744!
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Old Jan 14, 19, 10:13 am
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Thank you everybody for your thoughts. Deep down I realise you are probably right. Best to take a direct 747 rather than an indirect 777. Even if it is not refurbished. The indirect flight would have added four or more hours to the journey.

A question re seat selection. One reason I haven't flown with BA in recent years is the inability to choose your seats when booking. I assume I cannot book my seats until 24 hours before the flight? And I guess there is no way around this? Short of paying, of course, which I am not inclined to do. Are the sets of two seats at the back of the plane standard seats, or are they chargeable?

One more question if someone can help. Are there any downsides to booking these flights through a codeshare partner (ie Iberia, or Finnair)?

Again, thank you for all your help with this.
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Old Sep 14, 19, 3:19 am
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Iím due to fly this route in February and booked first class. Is an equipment downgrade common, or is it now established that F is consistently offered?
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Old Sep 14, 19, 5:02 am
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Originally Posted by NWplatinum View Post
Iím due to fly this route in February and booked first class. Is an equipment downgrade common, or is it now established that F is consistently offered?
There are no 744s without F. Nor are there any 77Ws without it. It's been years and years since anything else was seen on AUS. So I'd say you have one of the best chances on the entire network of getting it consistently.
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Old Sep 14, 19, 7:05 am
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Originally Posted by HenleyBoy View Post
Hi,
​​​​​​I am looking to fly to Texas around September/October time. One of the options I am considering is the BA service to Austin.

Can any of you BA experts give me any info on the Boeing 747 which is used on this route. I understand it is likely to be older planes which have not been refurbished. Is that correct? And if so, just how uncomfortable is it likely to be in economy (and I appreciate that is a bit subjective). And I assume the IFE will be on the poor side? I also read that BA may switch to 777s on this route at some stage. Can anybody throw any light on this?

Grateful for any advice.
I've flown this a number of times, on 787, 747 and 777 which I think it's on now, in fact I'm flying 777 back from AUS - LHR on 1st Nov.

Firstly arrivals at Austin is a breeze, though its a long walk of the plane right now (or was a month or so ago) due to the airport development. Once you've done that your airside in 5 minutes. Coming out BA use the AA lounge which gets very crowded and is fairly rubbish, obviously there's not a massive amount to do at AUS, boarding can be a scrum as well as they use a gate right down the end of the terminal and there is not a lot of room.

Last time I flew it was a 747, it was refurbed IFE ut still a bit of a shed, however I was in J up in the bubble so all else is forgiven. I'm not overly looking forward to flying on the 777 and have yet to try to figure which variant it will be, however as I'm flying back it will be a case of just go to sleep hopefully.

That's one thing the is good for, decent duration, leaves at a sensible time to allow a good period of rest. Heading to Austin I've done IAH and driven but coming out, despite the aircraft 'issues' if you are leaving from Austin not having to factor in a connection state side is a huge plus.
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Old Sep 14, 19, 7:13 am
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Obviously flying to IAH or DFW would give more options and here's a bit of a curveball I've been waiting to try.....

Singapore Airlines have an A350 on Manchester to Houston direct service, times look pretty good as do a lot of the reviews... Not sure about prices and obviously depends how accessible Manchester is to you.
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Old Sep 14, 19, 8:27 pm
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Iím flying in February and itís a 777 with 4 rows in F, with rows 1, 2, and 4 with center seats.
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