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Big bday trip for husb - appreciate lounge advice (LHR T5>T3 and T3>T5)

Big bday trip for husb - appreciate lounge advice (LHR T5>T3 and T3>T5)

Old Jan 18, 20, 11:43 am
  #1  
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Big bday trip for husb - appreciate lounge advice (LHR T5>T3 and T3>T5)

Hi everyone,
It's a big bday trip coming up for my husb and I'm trying to make sure we maximize our lounge options in LHR. We're flying F for all segments, and here's our schedule: BA114 (JFK-LHR)->BA43 (LHR-CPT). Return BA42 (CPT-LHR)->BA113 (LHR-JFK). We've got pretty long layovers in LHR (~9 hrs in each direction). We leave on Friday (1/24), will be spending most of Sat (1/25) at LHR, and return on Weds, 2/5 (spending most of Thurs, 2/6, at LHR).

1) Outbound: I believe this involves a T5 -> T3 change. I had originally thought we would take the forum's advice to skip flight transfers, and go landside (We have US passports, so can use e-gates). We could then use BA arrivals lounge and CCR breakfast (if it's worth it). After reading reviews of BA T5 arrivals lounge, I now wonder if we're better off just making the T5->T3 transfer and then using the Qantas lounge for showers and breakfast. Does that make sense to people? If so, do we still bother with skipping flight transfers and going lanside, then re-entering in T3? Rest of the day plan would be Cathay lounge for noodle bar at lunch, then BA lounge for our pre-booked massages, which are about 1.5 hours before departure (thanks to FT for the heads-up on pre-booking!). Also lots of walking to make sure I still make my 10,000 step goal and close my rings on my Apple Watch. LOL.
2) Return: I think we'll have a T3->T5 change. Assuming we want to shower upon arrival, I think our best bet is to go landside, use BA T3 arrivals lounge to shower and have breakfast, then head over to T5 and enter through first wing. We can then spend time in the CCR and, if we get sick of it (or it sucks) we can just go into T5 for a relaxed lunch (and lots of walking...gotta close those rings!!). We've also pre-booked the spa on the way back, so we'll have those appointments about 2 hrs before departure. Am I missing any tricks here?

If anyone has any JFK advice, I'm thinking the best bet there is to stick to CCR pre-departure and not faff around with the spa or the business lounge. Am I wrong?

Thoughts? Suggestions?

I know it's a long time to spend in an airport, but it doesn't really bother us much. (To note: We lived in London for several years so, although we could theoretically head into London for a couple of hours, we're not really interested in doing that this trip. I could be persuaded to convince husb that we're really better off spending the return at the Sofitel, if that's the strong opinon of FT)

Appreciate all the help and suggestions from this forum!
AngelMcD is offline  
Old Jan 18, 20, 12:00 pm
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I tend to be understanding of those who seek long lounge visits, but 9 hours stretches that to the point of collapse. Even 2 hours x 4 lounges (good grief) would be difficult to imagine. A trip to Oxford instead?

Still,trying to stay to the terms of reference here, unless you or your husband are madly into gin or coffee then I'd suggest Cathay would be a better bet on the outbound, and CCR on the return. AA runs the T3 arrivals lounge on the return but that would involve going landside. You could be waiting for a shower there, you are unlikely to wait for a shower in T5 Arrivals. You could book a cabana for the return in CCR, but I'd only put in for a couple of hours which would avoid the wait, though in the main Elemis lounge by CCR they use buzzers and wait times rarely go beyond 30 minutes.

But yes, I'd say a day room in the Hilton T4, Hilton Garden Inn (T2 by T3), Thistle or Sofitel (T5) would be a much better idea.
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Old Jan 18, 20, 12:02 pm
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I feel a day room at a hotel would be good.
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Old Jan 18, 20, 12:15 pm
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
I tend to be understanding of those who seek long lounge visits, but 9 hours stretches that to the point of collapse. Even 2 hours x 4 lounges (good grief) would be difficult to imagine. A trip to Oxford instead?

...............................................

But yes, I'd say a day room in the Hilton T4, Hilton Garden Inn (T2 by T3), Thistle or Sofitel (T5) would be a much better idea.
Couldn’t agree more !

Whenever there is talk of such incredibly long stints in lounges, I often find myself drawing an analogy (perhaps not the best, given that the OP is US-based ) with a rookie Test batsman, in his first walk to the crease, as he prepares to face an ultra-fast bowler : both are pretty undesirable prospects in my mind ....... even though I’m not personally involved in either scenario.
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Old Jan 18, 20, 12:33 pm
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I wouldn't necessarily forgo the spa at JFK. It's just around the corner from the CCR. I think the CCR desk staff will even phone to try and make an appointment for you if you ask.

You'd need to go there anyway if you wanted a shower before your flight.
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Old Jan 18, 20, 12:46 pm
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Hi,

I have done about 6 hrs at LHR T3 ( coming down from EDI going to LAS- had a treatment ( virtually walk in ( only had to wait 10mins) in the BA lounge then relaxed in CX F and visited QF,) , 6 hrs at LAX ( HNL-LAX-LHR) and 7 hrs in HKG ( hopped around the CX lounges whilst mum relaxed in the CX Pier F) and it was fine ( I do not get to vist the CX lounges that often so it was nice) but does get boring after a while and could be worse after an overnight flight. A day room is an excellent idea esp on the return flight from T5 as you can get a proper bed and hopefully a few hours good rest

Regards

TBS
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Old Jan 18, 20, 4:22 pm
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I always like the idea of a riverside pub. I know it's winter but that can make it feel even more inviting inside. And pick the less well-known places, so not Windsor. The Swan at Staines for example. Pre-book a local taxi and go for it. Still plenty of lounge time afterwards. Outbound it's well timed for a pub lunch, though on the return it might be a little early.
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Old Jan 19, 20, 8:14 am
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Thanks all. Is the current thinking re: T5->T3 transfer and vice-versa, still to go thru immigration, transfer and then go through check in (vs. following flight transfers)?

I also thought I had read that the chances of getting a cabana in T5 were virtually non-existent, but it seems that may not be in the case? If so, we'll not bother with T3 arrivals and just head over to get our names on the reservation list.

Thanks
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Old Jan 19, 20, 8:47 am
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If flying F, can reserve cabanas in advance.

tb
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Old Jan 19, 20, 8:50 am
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Originally Posted by AngelMcD View Post
Thanks all. Is the current thinking re: T5->T3 transfer and vice-versa, still to go thru immigration, transfer and then go through check in (vs. following flight transfers)?
Unless you are smokers I can't think of a good reason to go landside when airside is quicker. See the main Connection guide in the BA Forum Dashboard for longer details. Since you can use e-gates there may be a case for using airside to get to T5 and then using the UK Border to use the First Wing security rather than Flight Connection security, but there are a lots and lots of details in the main thread.

You can get cabanas reserved in advance by telephoning or emailing YouFirst.
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Old Jan 19, 20, 11:02 am
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This sounds like the perfect candidate for lunch at The Waterside Inn at Bray followed by a walk along the river. 3 hour lunch, 2 hour walk and then back to the airport. If you can afford F, you can afford The Waterside Inn!
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Old Jan 19, 20, 2:02 pm
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Tube to Osterley and a walk around Osterley park. There's a nice little coffee shop and book shop there too.
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Old Jan 19, 20, 2:13 pm
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With 9hrs I'd pop into London for 4hrs for lunch, some tourism, or something like that, then avoid rush hour times and get back to the airport at t-3hrs to enjoy a lounge as it's designed to be. 9hrs would be fatiguing - I've done it one time, fully with the intent of sleeping on the sofas around the corner (after landing from Chile (13hr flight) and flying from London to JFK 9hrs later (another 7hrs!)).
The destinations are more valuable than the lounges. Besides, you'll get to do the lot!
Enjoy
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Old Jan 19, 20, 2:14 pm
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Originally Posted by Adstring View Post
Tube to Osterley and a walk around Osterley park. There's a nice little coffee shop and book shop there too.
Or spend a few hours in Kew Gardens. Lovely!
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Old Jan 20, 20, 6:37 am
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I have done the Hilton T4 day room with my wife for he 60th Birthday trip to the Holy land in December last year, worked great.

First, getting from T5 is easy, Hoppa Bus directly to Hotel or Heathrow Express train to T4 an then short walk to hotel. When going to T3, train is the better option.

Day room also give the option of true rest (sleep) or venturing into the area including London proper if at the last minute you are so inclined. I'm a book fanatic so I had to go to Foyles and Ian Allan (transport books) during our layover in addition to our usual stops.

Hilton T4 staff are wonderful, I would strongly consider this over 9 hours at the lounges, which are also very nice but not a places to spend more than 3-4 hours.

All the best on your trip .
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