Champagne service in Business lounges

Old Nov 1, 19, 8:36 am
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Champagne service in Business lounges

Now I fully understand why BA doesnt have self pour champagne in the T5 business lounges as it would be a never ending bottle replacement service and cost a fortune.

However it is clear the staff are REALLY not happy about having to stop clearing plates and being asked to serve champagne.

Currently in T5 south business lounge which is reasonably busy and maybe the it's just this shift of staff but every request for champagne is met with a slight sigh and vague nod. Same when they deliver the drinks.
This is for all pax by the way not just us!

Not sure how it could be improved due to the sheer number of pax going through the lounge and doesnt detract from regular users really but for those who drinking champagne is a rare treat, especially in a lounge it's a bit of a let down as I have witnessed sitting here who were clearly excited about being in a business class lounge.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 8:49 am
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T5B lounge is much quieter and the staff more relaxed.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 8:56 am
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Is it the case of it being behind a curtain (so to speak) that people are more inclined and feeling of more exclusivity for asking for it.

Or the case of ‘oooo did you hear they asked for champagne, we should ask or I can’t see the champagne, let’s ask!’ Clearly this doesn’t apply to regulars.

Or possibly a case of having it locked away should deter people! I can’t imagine that when it comes to the public and ‘complimentary’m champagne, certainly not some FTers including me!

Put it out like wine or beer and maybe the demand would not be as strong coupled with less cumbersome process for people. A bit like the LGW south lounge.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 8:58 am
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Just have self pour Prosecco, with Champagne on request.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 9:13 am
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Another point is that once you have been served a glass of not chilled, not that great champagne you move on anyway. LPGS it is certainly not...

However that is the FTer in me speaking
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Old Nov 1, 19, 9:17 am
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I go all time to the kitchen and ask for Champagne instead of asking the waiter to bring me one.

Much faster and staff never had an issue with that - I always warn them that I'll come at least 5-6 times which gives them always a good laugh. Also I have seen it many times that other guests observe what I am doing and approx. 5 min later 10 people ask for Champagne (mostly husbands who need to bring Champagne to their wives who have seen me

How they manage to provide a 'help yourself' service at Gatwick but not at LHR (I would assume guests flying on their way to holidays drink even more, but clearly not an issue) is definitely another discussion.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 9:18 am
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Originally Posted by 225SG View Post
Now I fully understand why BA doesnt have self pour champagne in the T5 business lounges as it would be a never ending bottle replacement service and cost a fortune.

However it is clear the staff are REALLY not happy about having to stop clearing plates and being asked to serve champagne.

Currently in T5 south business lounge which is reasonably busy and maybe the it's just this shift of staff but every request for champagne is met with a slight sigh and vague nod. Same when they deliver the drinks.
This is for all pax by the way not just us!

Not sure how it could be improved due to the sheer number of pax going through the lounge and doesnt detract from regular users really but for those who drinking champagne is a rare treat, especially in a lounge it's a bit of a let down as I have witnessed sitting here who were clearly excited about being in a business class lounge.
I find it easier all round to go and wait by the doors to the kitchen and ask someone on their way in or out. Otherwise I find if you interrupt someone "on the floor" who is in the middle of another task that is less well received (and I can see why as it must be annoying for them) and can result in a long wait. Agreed it is not the best thing to have to do.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 9:25 am
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I still do not get this issue of having to ask presumably to deter consumption. It is either a benefit or not. In the BA first class lounge and the flagship lounges of AAnother airline, you just pour it yourself. Always thought it is pretty cheap (as anything with BA these days) to have it on request only.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 9:36 am
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I’m sure lack of free pour champagne in LHR J lounges is to control consumption. I can’t support the suggestion to have Prosecco freely available and asking for champagne. That would surely result in classic BA enhancement, no doubt “after feedback from our customers”.

Re the difference at LGW, I wonder if one of our semi-insiders is able to give ball-park figures for daily footfall across the 3 LHR J lounges v the LGW J lounge. BA have probably decided that it’s affordable at LGW but not at LHR.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 10:37 am
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tbh i always just say "Sorry to interrupt, when you are free could I get a glass or 2 of champagne please. I'm over there etc" can't say I've ever felt them sigh at the request

Maybe they do it behind my back or I just pass through LHR at none peak times.

If the reason to make it on request is to stop consumption then what about the indirect cost of all of the servers/attendants spending their time walking back and forth instead of cleaning etc, the extra glasses that are washed because you always get a fresh one rather than top up the one you already have etc?
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Old Nov 1, 19, 11:07 am
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Which champagne are they serving?
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Old Nov 1, 19, 11:25 am
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Originally Posted by TGLoyalty View Post
If the reason to make it on request is to stop consumption then what about the indirect cost of all of the servers/attendants spending their time walking back and forth instead of cleaning etc, the extra glasses that are washed because you always get a fresh one rather than top up the one you already have etc?
It will be relatively simple for BA to quantify the cost of free-pour champagne, far less so for staff inefficiency and extra washing-up. Plus the lounges will be contracted out and it’s far easier for a contractor to pass on the cost of extra champagne consumption than it would be for inefficiencies etc.
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Old Nov 1, 19, 11:26 am
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do they serve champagne all day?
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Old Nov 1, 19, 11:39 am
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Originally Posted by deb86305 View Post
do they serve champagne all day?
👍 Yes. There would be riots if they didn’t serve champagne from 5am onwards 😁🥂🥂
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Old Nov 1, 19, 11:41 am
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I always assumed the 'Champagne' served in the J lounge was actually Prosecco or some other bubbly not actually classified as champagne. Has anyone ever seen the bottle from which it's poured?
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