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IB Vs BA Vs VS/BA Vs AA To Madrid  
User currently offlineTsaord From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 3813 times:

I wanted to take this trip this year but I didn't have the money. I am now full time with my employer and have access to overtime. With that said I want to go to Madrid next March to attend a Spanish school for two weeks.

I'm thinking that if I can get my lazy self to do overtime this winter on my days off I could save up some money to fly in something above Y. This is my first time out of the USA and I do not want to be cramped up for over 12 hours.

My option out of the USA starts at ORD my home airport which host Iberia, AA, BA, and Virgin Atlantic. I'm wondering if paying above $2000 is worth it.

My possible routes are as follows:
IB - ORD-MAD
BA - ORD-LHR-MAD
VS/BA - ORD-LHR-MAD
AA - ORD-MIA-MAD

Now, I am a member is AA's AAdvantage yet I only have 1000 miles in my account lol.

I would like to know which airline would you choose based on Premium Economy and or Business Class offered from IB, BA, AA, and VS.

29 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 1, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 3798 times:

Quoting Tsaord (Thread starter):
to fly in something above Y. This is my first time out of the USA and I do not want to be cramped up for over 12 hours.

My option out of the USA starts at ORD my home airport which host Iberia, AA, BA, and Virgin Atlantic. I'm wondering if paying above $2000 is worth it.

I have no personal experience with either carrier mentioned in longhaul !

If you intend to fly Premium Economy you need to go via LHR, but beware that connecting there can be a hassle.
VS's product gets its acclaims, but so does BA's ...
.
If you intend to fly Business Class, you might want to go for a nonstop flight, as flight sectors in Europe usually will be on standard a/c without a specific Business Class seat. There is no big difference in comfort level flying LHR - MAD in Business compared to Economy.

OTOH, IB's Economy Class longhaul gets criticized quite often; no idea about their longhaul Business product. You might want to get qualified input on this before shelling out $$$ and then afterwards find out that the product you received does not match your expectations.

Flying AA via MIA might be a good option.
Check the a/c used for the domestic leg and see if there is a dedicated Business Class available (go to amadeus.net and then setguru.com - Sorry, but I have no time right now to do the checks).
If the overall price is right, I would consider this option.

Quoting Tsaord (Thread starter):
VS/BA - ORD-LHR-MAD

VS and BA on a single ticket ? Is it being sold that way ?
-HT



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 2, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 3798 times:

Quoting HT (Reply 1):
Flying AA via MIA might be a good option.
Check the a/c used for the domestic leg and see if there is a dedicated Business Class available

ORD-MIA-ORD usually is flown with a B752, a single flight shows a B763 - each of these planes has a dedicated B/F-class.
MIA-MAD-MIA is operated by a B763ER (make sure that you do not wind up on the IB-flight that has similar timings), however the seat width is a bit limited at 18.5 inch.

Quoting HT (Reply 1):
If you intend to fly Premium Economy you need to go via LHR, but beware that connecting there can be a hassle.
VS's product gets its acclaims, but so does BA's ...

After some more research I found that VS offers the wider seat (20 inch) compared to BA (18.5 inch) in their Prem Eco class. Seat pitch is reported to be identical at 38 inch.
-HT



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 3, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 3781 times:

Quoting HT (Reply 1):
Premium Economy you need to go via LHR

See also the following thread for some opinions about Prem-Eco to LHR (albeit from LAX): LAX- LHR - Which Is The Best Premium Economy? (by Gkpetery Oct 9 2007 in Aviation Polls & Prefs)



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineUPPERDECKFAN From Spain, joined Jun 2007, 992 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (7 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 3781 times:

If you can afford J, I'd recommend IB, it's nonstop, their new J product is very good and you'll have the chance to practice some spanish right from scratch (most of IB crew only speaks spanish).

Having said that, 2000USD is not enough for an IB ORD-MAD-ORD in J.



744,742,741,772,773,762,732,735,738,752,727,717,DC10,DC9,M82,M87,319,320,321,343,346,L1011,CRJ2,CRJ9,E190,ATR42,DSH8,
User currently offlineBHXFAOTIPYYC From Portugal, joined Jun 2005, 1644 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 3754 times:

Quoting UPPERDECKFAN (Reply 4):
Having said that, 2000USD is not enough for an IB ORD-MAD-ORD in J.

Not far out though. From my wonderous Galileo system:

IB 2331.00R IRTUS I + 7/30 - india class, min 7 day / max 30 day . + taxes / fuel surcharges etc.

Has the whole fleet been redone now with the new flat beds in J ?



Breakfast in BHX, lunch in FAO, dinner in TIP, baggage in YYC.
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 6, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 3740 times:

Quoting BHXFAOTIPYYC (Reply 5):
Not far out though. From my wonderous Galileo system:

IB 2331.00R IRTUS I 7/30 - india class, min 7 day / max 30 day . taxes / fuel surcharges etc.

Would that be 2331 USD or EUR ?
Taxes and fuel surcharges would be around another 200 EUR ?

on http://www.bizclasstravelmarket.com IU found a fare at 2578 USD for random dates in March 2008 on IB.
DL, CO, US and AA were quoted between 2800 and 2900 USD.



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineBullpitt From Spain, joined Mar 2004, 871 posts, RR: 8
Reply 7, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 3735 times:

Hi all

Why fly J when you can fly I class with IB for EUR 1844.70 tax included. By the way I is the same as J except for the flexibility of the tkt.

Hope you enjoy your stay in MAD but whatever you do don't go through LHR it can be a nightmare.



These are my principles but if you don't like them I have others
User currently offlineAlexPorter From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 3729 times:

Okay, here's the deal with this one. There is a clear trade-off between service and convenience on this routing. Of VS, BA, AA, and IB transatlantic service, IB fairly consistently rates the lowest in various surveys. However, the connecting airport choices for the other options are really quite frightening. I've heard so many horror stories about trying to connect at LHR that it's not even funny. MIA doesn't have a very good reputation in terms of airport facilities either but connecting may or may not be easy there (I don't know). At any rate if you are willing to pay for the added service of business class, you aren't going to want to spend your arrival trying to weave through a busy airport trying to make another flight. I'd honestly go for Iberia's non-stop service in your case. Also, A340s tend to be nice planes.

The only way I'd choose another carrier is if you absolutely want the best possible service on the transatlantic leg and don't care about connecting, in which case I'd take VS and switch to BA at LHR as long as you have enough time between flights.


User currently offline767-332ER From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2030 posts, RR: 10
Reply 9, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3707 times:

Tip from an experienced traveler on Iberia, avoid IB like the plague!!!


Twinjets...if one fails, work the other one twice as hard!!!
User currently offlineBullpitt From Spain, joined Mar 2004, 871 posts, RR: 8
Reply 10, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 3696 times:

Hi all

Quoting AlexPorter (Reply 8):
Tip from an experienced traveler on Iberia, avoid IB like the plague!!!

I doubt very much you have ever travelled IB business plus in your life.  old 



These are my principles but if you don't like them I have others
User currently offline767-332ER From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2030 posts, RR: 10
Reply 11, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 3695 times:

Quoting Bullpitt (Reply 10):
Hi all

Quoting AlexPorter (Reply 8):
Tip from an experienced traveler on Iberia, avoid IB like the plague!!!

I doubt very much you have ever travelled IB business plus in your life.

I certainly do not see why you would doubt it, but you are entitled to your opinion. I have nothing to prove to you. The fact that you do work for the airline and have risen to such conclusions does extend the belief that many have regarding the attitude of the IB staff. This is the number one turn off to passengers that seem to fly on Iberia. Since you can make a difference, I suggest you take this back to the colleagues in MAD. Change your attitudes, remember that you are here to serve us, the passengers and to never forget that real alternatives have started to sprung around the spanish skies. Air Europa will certainly begin earning my euros everytime I have to travel intra-Spain and well, on the transatlantic portion, until Iberia changes the attitude and ways of conducting business, I will not set my foot again on an IB A340-600/300.

You might see this as criticism and negativity but I see if more of a positive suggestion for you and your colleagues. Work on the overall customer service of the airline, otherwise you might be eating some humble pie sooner than later. Remember Easyjet has already started operations in MAD and Openskies with the U.S. is coming this March. Passengers will have their choices and if it means BA from MAD to BOS or elsewhere, I will clearly choose BA than IB.

[Edited 2007-10-14 08:15:02]

[Edited 2007-10-14 08:25:10]


Twinjets...if one fails, work the other one twice as hard!!!
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 12, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 3679 times:

Quoting 767-332ER (Reply 9):
Tip from an experienced traveler on Iberia, avoid IB like the plague!!!



Quoting 767-332ER (Reply 11):
on the transatlantic portion, until Iberia changes the attitude and ways of conducting business, I will not set my foot again on an IB A340-600/300.

I think, it would be nice if you could share your negative experience on IB's Business Class longhaul by putting together some details ...
-HT



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineZRH From Switzerland, joined Nov 1999, 5569 posts, RR: 36
Reply 13, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 3669 times:

I don't know IB on long-haul. But I flew IB this year ZRH-MAD-TFS-MAD-ZRH. All four flights on A 32X (319, 320, 321). I was absolutely disappointed. The fares weren't low but the level of service and seat pitch. The flight MAD-TFS is more than three hours but you pay for everything, for example a can of normal water € 1.5 etc. The seat pitch is very, very poor. I think it's not better than Ryanair but more expensive.

User currently offlineFXramper From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 7365 posts, RR: 85
Reply 14, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 3662 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Lately, AA #68 has been using a 763 with the new J class seats.

 twocents 


User currently offlineSandroZRH From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 3660 times:

If you travel in late march, precisely on or after march 27th, or if you could move your trip to April, i recommend you go through LHR on BA as the new Terminal 5 will open on March 27th! It will with no doubt be the best option of the ones you mentioned.

User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 16, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 3658 times:

Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 15):
LHR on BA (..) new Terminal 5

{i]That[/i] indeed will make a positive difference compared to the current situation  checkmark 
-HT



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineUPPERDECKFAN From Spain, joined Jun 2007, 992 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 3643 times:

Quoting Bullpitt (Reply 10):
I doubt very much you have ever travelled IB business plus in your life.

Hi Bullpit!

Just a tip from a long time IBPlus Gold/Platinum FF

Not everybody can afford Business Plus (in fact very few) so IB should take a better care of the people flying Y, specially in the intraeuropean network.

Just to mention a single example it's a shame IB can't even offer a bottle of water for free on european flights when all their competitors do it (I'm asuming IB competitors are the likes of AF, BA, LH, LX, etc and not FR, EZ, VY)



744,742,741,772,773,762,732,735,738,752,727,717,DC10,DC9,M82,M87,319,320,321,343,346,L1011,CRJ2,CRJ9,E190,ATR42,DSH8,
User currently offlineBullpitt From Spain, joined Mar 2004, 871 posts, RR: 8
Reply 18, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 3635 times:

Hi there

Quoting UPPERDECKFAN (Reply 17):
Just to mention a single example it's a shame IB can't even offer a bottle of water for free on european flights when all their competitors do it (I'm asuming IB competitors are the likes of AF, BA, LH, LX, etc and not FR, EZ, VY)

If I'm not mistaken if you ask for a glass of water (not a bottle) it's free. I agree with you that if you fly Y class the service level is poor (but not much better in the rest) I allways say for the difference it's better to travel C

Quoting UPPERDECKFAN (Reply 17):
Not everybody can afford Business Plus (in fact very few)

Not that few, you would be surprised how many people fly J now days. Remember you can fly with a Promo I or descounted D for less than half the price in J and still benefit of the same inflight service.

Quoting HT (Reply 12):
think, it would be nice if you could share your negative experience on IB's Business Class longhaul by putting together some details ...

I second this request.

Quoting ZRH (Reply 13):
The seat pitch is very, very poor. I think it's not better than Ryanair but more expensive.

This comes up again and again can someone pls put a comparison of seat pitch in Y class in european and tranatlantic flights for the mayor airlines and LCC. My research showed a while back that IB's was similar to most and better than some.



These are my principles but if you don't like them I have others
User currently offline767-332ER From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2030 posts, RR: 10
Reply 19, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 3626 times:

Quoting Bullpitt (Reply 18):
Hi there

Quoting UPPERDECKFAN (Reply 17):
Just to mention a single example it's a shame IB can't even offer a bottle of water for free on european flights when all their competitors do it (I'm asuming IB competitors are the likes of AF, BA, LH, LX, etc and not FR, EZ, VY)

If I'm not mistaken if you ask for a glass of water (not a bottle) it's free. I agree with you that if you fly Y class the service level is poor (but not much better in the rest) I allways say for the difference it's better to travel C

Quoting UPPERDECKFAN (Reply 17):
Not everybody can afford Business Plus (in fact very few)

Not that few, you would be surprised how many people fly J now days. Remember you can fly with a Promo I or descounted D for less than half the price in J and still benefit of the same inflight service.

Quoting HT (Reply 12):
think, it would be nice if you could share your negative experience on IB's Business Class longhaul by putting together some details ...

I second this request.

Quoting ZRH (Reply 13):
The seat pitch is very, very poor. I think it's not better than Ryanair but more expensive.

This comes up again and again can someone pls put a comparison of seat pitch in Y class in european and tranatlantic flights for the mayor airlines and LCC. My research showed a while back that IB's was similar to most and better than some.

My experiences is first of all the rude service from the FA staff...well, not limited to them as the ground staff is horrible also (could'nt give me my boarding pass on Oneworld partner American for my intra-USA service).

Lost baggage, countless of times, and my time in J was not excluded to that.

Seats are uncomfortable (from a headrest perpective), as I am 6'2", and the tilt around the knee area was uncomfortable. Seats are not completely lie-flat.

Food was mediocre, but the wines as usual were good.

All in all, why would I pay more to fly on J when it's the same IB as always...that's mainly my rationale. Other airlines, when flying business or first, give you much better treatment. Your base on flying IB on J is the only way that you'll receive good treatment is absolutely ridiculous. What does IB do, neglect the other 80% of their customers because they didn't buy J? I am sorry to hear this, but you are indeed an IB employee and that seems to be your rationale. Again, as I state my previous message, IB needs to work on customer service and how they treat their passengers, whether flying Y or J.



Twinjets...if one fails, work the other one twice as hard!!!
User currently offlineBullpitt From Spain, joined Mar 2004, 871 posts, RR: 8
Reply 20, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 3624 times:

Hi all

Quoting 767-332ER (Reply 19):
Your base on flying IB on J is the only way that you'll receive good treatment is absolutely ridiculous. What does IB do, neglect the other 80% of their customers because they didn't buy J?

???? I have not made such as statement, It's seem you fall to the wrong conclusions quite often.

Quoting 767-332ER (Reply 19):
Lost baggage, countless of times, and my time in J was not excluded to that.

You must be a very unlucky chap as IB lost baggage rate is below some of the main carriers such as BA and LH .

Quoting 767-332ER (Reply 19):
Food was mediocre, but the wines as usual were good.

Again someything I wont argue as taste is very subjective, but IB's J class menues are designed by one of Spains best chef. I have flown Twice in J and have ejoyed the food tremendously. Bus as I have only Flown IB in J I can't copare to others. I have flown many others in Y and as far as I'm concerned food has been similar in all. (some I have enjoyed more than others but only becasue food is such a subjective matter.)

Quoting 767-332ER (Reply 19):
but you are indeed an IB employee and that seems to be your rationale. Again,

Again you judge someone you no nothing about. I take great pride in my work as most of my collages.

It seems to me you're just another IB basher, that's fine by me I just take your comments with a pich of salt.



These are my principles but if you don't like them I have others
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 21, posted (7 years 2 months 1 week 2 days 12 hours ago) and read 3621 times:

Quoting 767-332ER (Reply 19):
My experiences is first of all the rude service from the FA staff...well, not limited to them as the ground staff is horrible also (could'nt give me my boarding pass on Oneworld partner American for my intra-USA service).

Lost baggage, countless of times, and my time in J was not excluded to that.

Seats are uncomfortable (from a headrest perpective), as I am 6'2", and the tilt around the knee area was uncomfortable. Seats are not completely lie-flat.

Food was mediocre, but the wines as usual were good.

Thanks for posting your experiences with IB.
-HT



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offline767-332ER From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2030 posts, RR: 10
Reply 22, posted (7 years 2 months 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3594 times:

Quoting Bullpitt (Reply 20):
???? I have not made such as statement, It's seem you fall to the wrong conclusions quite often.



Quoting Bullpitt (Reply 18):
If I'm not mistaken if you ask for a glass of water (not a bottle) it's free. I agree with you that if you fly Y class the service level is poor (but not much better in the rest) I allways say for the difference it's better to travel C

By service level, I suppose you were implying service amenities, although service level encompasses not only amenities but the quality of service you are receiving from staff. You are indeed correct in both of those (if that's what you were implying).

Quoting Bullpitt (Reply 20):
Again you judge someone you no nothing about.



Quoting Bullpitt (Reply 10):
Hi all

Quoting AlexPorter (Reply 8):
Tip from an experienced traveler on Iberia, avoid IB like the plague!!!

I doubt very much you have ever travelled IB business plus in your life.

You took the first strike pal, I am just backing up my experience, as yes it is something subjective but something that as a passenger I have experienced. Take my suggestions as that, a passenger with qualitative information which I have given back for you and your colleagues to improve on. Also, if IB's baggage service is so pristine, then why would they not offer a free service line and not a 902?



Twinjets...if one fails, work the other one twice as hard!!!
User currently offline767-332ER From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 2030 posts, RR: 10
Reply 23, posted (7 years 2 months 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 3592 times:

Bullpit,

I suggest you read some of the comments in the following link. These are stories from a few unlucky chaps as myself. http://www.consumeraffairs.com/travel/iberia.htm



Twinjets...if one fails, work the other one twice as hard!!!
User currently offlineTsaord From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (7 years 2 months 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 3547 times:

Quoting SandroZRH (Reply 15):
If you travel in late march, precisely on or after march 27th, or if you could move your trip to April, i recommend you go through LHR on BA as the new Terminal 5 will open on March 27th! It will with no doubt be the best option of the ones you mentioned.

Well I'm going the first two weeks of March. But London was my desired first international route to take before I started learning Spanish.

I so I will be making a London trip next spring or summer. So I look forward to seeing the new T5 when I arrive. Hopefully next summer. London is so dang expensive lol


25 TruemanQLD : IB as it is direct and it is a nice airline. Not VS/BA as changing airlines is a pain in the ass
26 Daron4000 : If it is your first time in Business class long haul and you want a really good experience, don't care about travel segments/length, or are an airplan
27 FXramper : AA should announce DFW-MAD soon, another option. IB is awful. When is OW gonna give them the boot?[Edited 2007-10-23 16:51:20]
28 TACAA320 : A friendly advise: Try to be loyal, as far as you can, to your FF program. Always.
29 Post contains images UPPERDECKFAN : They won't give OW the chance, for some strange reason AF/KL and LH are fighting to death to purchase IB, so they'll end up moving themselves to STAR
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