Delta vs BA for LON-ATL/TPA

Old Jul 19, 10, 9:28 pm
  #1  
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Delta vs BA for LON-ATL/TPA

All,

Please forgive me if I've broken any rules - this is my first forum post.

I'm a Silver on Delta with 50+ segments and 40K+ miles. I currently live in ATL and am about to book about 4-5 return flights during the next 3 months between LON and TPA/ATL for work. I'm trying to decide between Delta and BA for these flights.

I will be living in the UK starting next year and so status (Gold or Platinum) won't do me much good and I don't believe Delta offers upgrades on these flights. Not sure if I can get anything else out of Delta (extra year of status for when I return?)

BA offers premium economy (my company won't pay for business class) and does offer a direct flight to TPA.

Any suggetions on which arline to pick?

Thanks!
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Old Jul 19, 10, 9:50 pm
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Well the Nonstop flight ex-TPA in Premium >>> DL in Y with a connection. Connections double (at least) your chance for issues.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 10:11 pm
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Delta Business Class seats are .5 inches wider than those in Coach. They recline further but that is it.

If you are doing the mile for the seats, I'd go with BA.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 10:16 pm
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World Traveller Plus is far, far better than regular Econohell on either airline. IMHO it's like domestic F with the wider seats and recline, and I can sleep much easily in these than the 31" seat pitch of Econohell!

I don't see why DL offers you ANY benefit other than a shot at F on the short connecting flight TPA-ATL, but then a long flight in coach? You don't need the status.

I believe you should be able to credit the BA miles to the AS program if you don't want the crappy ExecClub of BA.
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Old Jul 19, 10, 11:12 pm
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World Traveller Plus and a nonstop make this a no-brainer. Take BA over Delta every single time.

If you do want to credit to BA, 4 TATL r/ts in WT+ will net you BA Silver status.
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Old Jul 20, 10, 4:29 am
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Originally Posted by saxmankartik View Post
All,

Please forgive me if I've broken any rules - this is my first forum post.

I'm a Silver on Delta with 50+ segments and 40K+ miles. I currently live in ATL and am about to book about 4-5 return flights during the next 3 months between LON and TPA/ATL for work. I'm trying to decide between Delta and BA for these flights.

I will be living in the UK starting next year and so status (Gold or Platinum) won't do me much good and I don't believe Delta offers upgrades on these flights. Not sure if I can get anything else out of Delta (extra year of status for when I return?)

BA offers premium economy (my company won't pay for business class) and does offer a direct flight to TPA.

Any suggetions on which arline to pick?

Thanks!
Summer connections to a once daily flight out of ATL??? Way too many chances for mis-connects. I'd take the BA option non-stop, though I think that flight goes into Gatwick, not sure how that fits your schedule but probably far better than adding 3-4 hours for the pleasure of seeing ATL
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Old Jul 20, 10, 4:33 am
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Originally Posted by mersk862 View Post
World Traveller Plus and a nonstop make this a no-brainer. Take BA over Delta every single time.
If you do want to credit to BA, 4 TATL r/ts in WT+ will net you BA Silver status.
I was once BA silver but never got to use it much as I moved here. If you will soon be living in UK, you get access to the BA biz lounges and it will be far more useful to you than GM on DL. You can upgrade with miles from BA WT+, but I would just enjoy the flights, save your miles for travel on OW and hope for Op-Ups.
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Old Jul 20, 10, 4:45 am
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On the face of it, I would say that you should go with BA, due to the non-stops (note, however, that LGW-TPA is not daily). If you or your company are willing to pony up for WT+ (premium economy), then the playing field tilts even further in BA's favor. Otherwise, here are my thoughts:

- I find the Y products to be pretty similar. BA might edge out on crews, generally, but food is a wash, though BA has booze for free, while DL only offers free wine and beer. In terms of cabin comfort, I would say that DL is better, if only because the 2-3-2 on the 767 (or 2-4-2 if you wanted to take the A330 out of LGW) is better than 3-3-3 on the 777.

- For J, I think the carriers are pretty close (assuming you fly the DL 767 out of LHR). The J cabin on the BA 777 feels a bit like a dorm and the layout means you will have to climb over someone or someone will have to climb over you. But the DL seats can feel a bit confined when reclined. Service is comparable and I think DL has slightly better food.

- In terms of the FFP, it is much easier to earn mileage with DL for discount coach. If you fly WT+ or J, then BA comes off a bit better, but the elite bonuses are relatively poor. Also, BA charges fuel surcharges on their awards (DL charges these only on awards originating outside the US). On the plus side for BA are that upgrades from WT+ to J are only 25k miles roundtrip, with solid availability. Also, if you fly in WT+ or J, then BA Silver is not terribly hard to get and provides lounge access to the typically quite nice BA lounges.
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Old Jul 20, 10, 7:03 am
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If you were flying J, then DL would have it all the way with their new lie flats (I really don't like the BA J class where every other seat faces backward).

In Y/Y+, I would give the nod to BA for the Y+, direct flight, and the free booze.
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Old Jul 20, 10, 8:12 am
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Let me throw out a 3rd option: the dAArk side.

Sign up for a challenge on AA, and try to get to Gold or Platinum pretty quickly. During this period you will have to connect with AA at JFK, but I think you will have multiple flight options out of JFK should something go bAAd on your day of travel. (Miami might also be an option.) You are riding in coach TATL, but you are getting AA miles and maybe getting some SWUs.

Once the AA/BA immunity is in place (which should not take too much longer), you can earn AA miles on BA and then you can start taking the BA flights on days when they work out better for you.

May not be your best option, but maybe worth thinking about. Downside is you ride AA coach for at least a while, but you put all your miles into one program. And if you fly enough to make Exec Plat, there is no doubt that you will be pleased with that.

And welcome to the Delta Forum!

David
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Old Jul 20, 10, 8:26 am
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I had a similar work schedule in 2008. I'd also go with BA...company paid for WT+ and it's only 12500 BA miles to upgrade this (one-way) to Club World (plus you earn the WTP miles for the flight, making it even cheaper than 12500), often with good availability. I usually did this Eastbound for sleep on a sun night and went straight to work Mon morning, and took WT+ back to the US on a day flight, which was more than comfortable. Seats are good, food so-so, service spotty, but I prefer BA over DL for TATL if BA = non-stop. T5 arrivals lounge if flying CW is good for business travelers (shower, english breakfast, etc).

You're guaranteed a flat bed in J if your upgrade clears too, with the novelty of rear-facing if that interests you. You should have afternoon tea (scones with clotted cream) in BA CW, high in the sky, at least once IMO

After a short while, you'll probably make BA Silver which is OW sapphire and gets you into any Admirals Club in the US, if that's worth anything to you.

BA T5 lounges (once you earn status or fly J) are excellent (in comparison). BA's website and award availability are better (but when you factor in earn/burn ratios, it can take a while to get a BA CW award to Europe).

Last edited by seanp7; Jul 20, 10 at 8:31 am
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Old Jul 20, 10, 4:32 pm
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Or if you don't want your FA to look like your Granny's older cousin fresh from winning a lemon sucking contest why not drive the hour to MCO and get on Virgin Atlantic's Premium Economy service to LGW? 3 Flights a day in Summer.
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Old Jul 20, 10, 4:39 pm
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I'm not a business traveller, but I do make frequent travels to London over several years. I live in Cincinnati so I also know Delta very well. I would take BA over Delta in a heartbeat! The service is SO much better, the seats more comfortable, the offerings more plentiful, the food is better...we always check BA first for flights home. If it is within $100-$200 of the price of Delta, we will spend more for it. And I'm pretty well known for being cheap with the money--but for the difference in comfort, it is well worth it!
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Old Jul 20, 10, 4:46 pm
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Originally Posted by Slow learner View Post
Or if you don't want your FA to look like your Granny's older cousin fresh from winning a lemon sucking contest why not drive the hour to MCO and get on Virgin Atlantic's Premium Economy service to LGW? 3 Flights a day in Summer.
Exactly what everyone elses has been saying here -- fly BA instead of DL. I suppose VS is an option too.
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Old Jul 20, 10, 5:52 pm
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I took WT+ to TPA last week. My first ever long haul on BA and I must say I was a bit underwhelmed. The WT+ on the plane I was on was a little better than Y but not quite domestic F. There were no dedicated FA's...just the same ones serving Y pushing the cart right down the aisle at meal time. Meal time that came with a very Y looking tray of chicken and another sandwich toss 90min out. The latter coming with a rejection of my request for a diet coke....we only have tea/coffee and OJ? What! It was 4 PM.

I had to sit in one of the middle 4 seats in the bulkhead and it was ok....but likely no better than sitting in an exit row in Y from what I could tell. A nice seat for not being in J but not worth the hundreds extra over Y I have seen it priced at. We used miles and money and it was all that was available...so we gave it a try.

All this being said I thought it would have sucked to have paid big money for this. I would much rather buy Y and try to work my way into an extra leg room seat....even if I had to pay for it.

I haven't been on VS PE - only Upper. It looked a hell of a lot nicer (seats and service) than what I got on my WT+ flight to TPA so I'll encourage the OP to check into that option.
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