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MIA-LHR, GVA-LHR, LHR-MIA: AA And SA  
User currently offlineFlyVirgin744 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1313 posts, RR: 1
Posted (13 years 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 2385 times:

Hello everyone. I just got back yesterday (28) from my 4th trip to europe and these are my comments. Enjoy.

June 4th- Miami to London Heathrow on American Airlines flight 56

WOW!! That was the first impression I got when stepping onto my first 777. More legroom, hell yeah. I was actually able to cross my legs like on those commercials. The PTV was excellent. It was a touch screen which was awesome because I didnt need to touch the remote ever. The movies were ok but I watched the National Geographic channel along with the nickelodeon channel, I'm a sucker for cartoons. I took a pill right before the meal and passed out at 11 or so and didnt wake up till we entered the coast of Ireland. That was good for now I wouldn't be jet lagged. Seats were also very wide. AA makes use of the fact that they have only 9 abreast when the 777 can fit 10, so that's nice of them. Food was very good. The pilot came on twice and he was a real trip. Very funny and he was bragging about how wonderful the 777 was and how everyone has a PTV and more legroom. He spoke each time for about 15 minutes, right after we hit cruise, and a half hour before landing.

Bad stuff. The flight attendants. Mean, rude, and overall just not nice. This was my first time flying over on AA, I usually go Virgin. So my conclusion was that I'm getting lots more room than Virgin, but I'm sacrificing service. Virgin usually comes around with Baily's and will serve wine and other alcohols not caring about age. Not so with AA on this flight. Our flight attendant would not give us any wine with dinner nor anything else and I was shocked. My friend and I are 17. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a heavy teenage drinker, but I occasionly like some wine with dinner. So we asked why and they replied "you're not 21", we answered back "Were in the middle of the ocean, far from 3 miles off the American shore", she then says snotty "its an American Airlines rule." Well I really didnt really care that I didnt get the wine, but it was the principle I was pissed about. I wouldn't have minded so much if they would have told us that from the beginning. It could have went like this: "I would like some white wine please", "Sorry we have a rule that we don't serve under 21." but no we get an "You must be mistaken, we dont serve under 21" said snooty. Other stuff, the remote was on the top of the arm rest which means one can keep hitting stuff they dont mean to, plus they still have the ptv box under the seat ahead which subtracts from the legroom. Delta had this problem on their 764s but supposely has fixed that, and so should AA on their 777s. Other than that, a very nice flight, I like the 2-5-2 configuration, my friend and I had the 2 part and we were isolated.

Technical: We took off late by 40 minutes due to the fact that the printer in the cockpit was broken. Arrived about 15 minutes late. The plane was N797AN, Spirit of AA.

June 27- Geneva to London Heathrow on Swissair flight 830

I was very much looking foward to this flight with great expectations, and they were infact met. We boarded the A321 about 1/2 full, taxied at about the take off speed, then took off. Even though it was a short flight, we got drinks, a big breakfast, and a "just kidding" pranks video presentation. Seats were leather, wide, and plenty of legroom. The FA's were very nice. An ideal perfect flight. 10/10. Arrived early after circling London a couple times.

June 28- London Heathrow to Miami on AA 57

Due to my first flight, I was expecting more room more but less service. While there was more room, it wasnt as much as the first flight. I'd say the first had a pitch of 35" and this flight a 33", not that I'm complaining. Service this time was excellent, The FA's were very nice. Food was terrific. They came around with drinks first, shortly followed by a meal, chicken with salad, bread, mashed potatoes, and cake!!!! Holy crap, thats good food!! Then they gave more drinks. This time we got our alcoholic beverages with no problem, they didnt even hesitate, which brings me to the conclusion that either these FA's knew they could get away with it, or the other ones were just a**holes, excuse my French. They came around with coffee, tea, and water throughout the flight. The final meal was, thats right, pizza!! Movies were great too. 13 Days, Down to earth, Antitrust, Crouching tiger.... We took a very northern route. We came down north of Newfoundland, right over boston and so on..... This was my best transatlantic flight. I like the 777 less busy 2-5-2 interior than the 747 3-4-3.

Conclusion: As stated, this was my first time not taking Virgin. Virgin may not have the space, but theres a certain spirit on board that AA doesn't have. It may just be that I'm going on vacation and the moment I get on Virgin I already feel like I'm in Britian due to the english accent, they give the temperature in celsius..... while with American, everything is still in yes, American. However, that last AA flight was really awesome. Also, when I've flown Virgin, there has always been a problem with the PTV either with the remote or a problem with the actual screen, on AA I had no such problems.

Side notes: I visited the Paris Air Show since I happened to be in Paris. I went on the last day. It was very hot and very crowded. The show moved very slowly and I decided to leave. I saw most of the exhibitions and got a cool Boeing bag.

My inbound MIA flight left at 10:50am so I checked in at 8 and headed for the terminal 2 spectators gallery. Heathrow has very good signs all over the airport directing us hobbyist toward it. I saw all sorts of cool stuff. However, I only saw two 747 landings in the span of an hour. A BA in Union colours, and a South African 744. The special Qantas racing plane was parked at a hanger for reasons I dont know why, and so was a South African 747sp. I saw 3 Concordes resting at hangers. There were many people at the gallery, should have asked them if any come here. Geneva airport is small but I got to see some cool stuff.

Hope you enjoyed my report and I wish to see some replies.  Smile


Sometimes I go about in pity for myself and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky.
20 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineBA747-436 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 1259 posts, RR: 12
Reply 1, posted (13 years 3 weeks 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 2241 times:

Great Report!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
It's nice to finaly read a good report about AA long Haul service. They must be finaly improving!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
I think that 21 rule sucks, i'm from the UK and whenever i fly i like to get a few glasses of Champagne to make the flight a little easier.  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
But on the US based airlines they are all like "If you havn't got ID then your not having a drink", i get pissed sometimes, but i had a realy funny experiance when on a BA flight to Boston we had a US Flight attendent and she said i couldn't have a drink, and after about 5 mins of arguing about that this was a British Carrier and it didn't go by American rules, the Purser finaly came along and told the FA that she was wrong and should have known better from working with BA for 5 years!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
I was laughing so much!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy She wasn't.  Smile/happy/getting dizzy



Dan Valentine - Bad Ass MOFO Photographer
User currently offlineIronminds From Australia, joined Apr 2001, 556 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (13 years 3 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 2228 times:

Nice report. I think the stews on your flight out were an anomaly; I've always found AA's crews to be, if not always hyper-friendly, at least competently polite. And when I was under 21 (a ridiculous law forced on the states by that Hillary Clinton of the Right, Liddy Dole, while she was transportation secretary -- an interesting story in and of itself, as apparently she wanted to force states to bring hte age up to 24!) I can't ever recall having such problems on any carrier, US or domestic; either the bottles were handed over without a second thoght, or with a knowing wink.

Was your flight back on a 777? The last time I took AA across the pond was on a 767, maybe three years ago. I'm looking forward to trying the More Room Throughout Coach thing on a flight that long, though. (I have flown in JFK-LAX, and really enjoyed the difference).


User currently offlineFlyVirgin744 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1313 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (13 years 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 2217 times:

Thanks for replying, the aircraft back was indeed a 777.


Sometimes I go about in pity for myself and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky.
User currently offlineTrintocan From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2000, 3225 posts, RR: 4
Reply 4, posted (13 years 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 2188 times:

Great trip report indeed. The detail was good. I just returned home on a BA 777 with 10-abreast seating and the legroom was a bit tight. Otherwise, the Triple Seven is a great plane indeed. BA's PTVs do not have the touch-screen feature as do American's.

US aeroplanes are technically US territory and so US federal laws would apply to them even in flight. Hence the rule about being 21 for alcohol service would apply. That however does not excuse the F/A's rude behaviour.

Trintocan.



Hop to it, fly for life!
User currently offlineIronminds From Australia, joined Apr 2001, 556 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (13 years 3 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 2185 times:

Of course, technically, the drinking age is a matter for the states to decide -- the only reason they are all in agreement on it is because of the federal gov's constitutionally distateful decision in the 80s to withold highway funds if they didn't tow the line. But there is no federal law on the books that says a word about drinking age, which is as it should be. So really I think it's a matter of airline policy, not a matter of law, unless there is some other FAA regulation on the books that covers this.

User currently offlineBlink182 From Azerbaijan, joined Oct 1999, 5480 posts, RR: 15
Reply 6, posted (13 years 3 weeks 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 2175 times:

Great Report and happy you had a good experience on the second AA flight!
On the first flight with alcohal, the FA probably thought you were trying to drink and get away with it(like freshmen drinking in college...) and technically, I don't really blame her. And also, I think the way the food is at MIA maybe different from LHR, so the food was probably better coming back to the states depending how it was prepared. Oddly enough, the best pasta I have ever had was on AA! It was DFW-YVR YVR-DFW and had the pasta on the first leg and decided it was so good I would have it coming back! Yummy, I can still taste it!
rgds,
blink182



Give me a break, I created this username when I was a kid...
User currently offlineFlyVirgin744 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1313 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (13 years 3 weeks 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 2159 times:

Blink, can you please clarify what you mean by "get a way with it"? Perhaps you mean did we order it just so we can have the satisfaction of being served alcohol because we are deprived from being served in the US. If so, thats a pretty dumb reason if you stop to think about it. It's not like we were trying to order a pint of beer like at a party, this was just some dinner wine which I'm usually acustomed to, especially when I travel overseas. I'm not sure if you've ever been overseas, but alcohol is done differently over there meaning its normal for people of all ages to have wine with dinner, infact its unusual when not. Even in the US, any fancy/expensive restaurant will serve underage mature young people wine.

And as for your first statement, "...happy you had a good experience on the second AA flight!...", I had a very good experience on my first flight, like I said, I'm not a heavy drinker so the fact I wasnt served didnt really make my flight so much worse, just that the flight attendents, well atleast the two assigned to our area, were not what I consider AA's best.

There's more I would like to say about the drinking issue but I feel it may deserve its own topic on the main discussion board. I'll start it up at a later time when I don't have much to do.

Thank you for your time reading my report and I hope I have clarified my thinking a little more for you regarding the alcohol.

One more thing, your comment about how you wouldn't blame her is a typical American attitude toward drinking and I don't think less of you because of that, that attitude was brought upon because of alcohol abuse which for some reason has hit the US's youth badly wheras when I have flown Virgin, they expect you to drink, thats right, the walk around with cups and a big Bailey's bottle. My first flight I declined the drink because of the American culture I was used to, but as I spent more time in Europe, I realized alcohol shouldn't be equated with shame or looked upon badly as it is over here. Hope that again clarifies some stuff fer ya and perhaps opens yours eyes to a little European culture.  Smile



Sometimes I go about in pity for myself and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky.
User currently offlineJason Seiple From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (13 years 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 2155 times:

Some other posters are right. AA follows US laws. The flight attendants could be fired, even go to jail, for serving alcohol to people who are underage. If I was a flight attendant, I certainly wouldn't risk going to jail so you could have a class of wine.

Understand the point of view of the flight attendants for a minute. Most mild-mannered teenagers know better than to order alcohol when they are underage. A 17 year old trying to get booze probably isn't up to any good, in the mind of that adult. Think about it for a minute.




Jason Seiple
OMA
jasonseiple@hotmail.com


User currently offlineSwiss-airplane From Switzerland, joined May 2000, 591 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (13 years 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 2152 times:

Very cool trip report. Very interesting for reading. Excellent. I loved American Airlines when I flow with them from Dallas to Zürich this april. For me, is American the best big US airline. Delta the worst. There I had also problems with Baileys in 1998 and at that time I was 18. The rude Delta Flight Attendant didn't give any alcohol drinks to me, while I got everything (just a Baileys and a bit wine) on my last Northwest Airlines flight in december and at that time I was 20 years old. Anyway, glad that you liked Swissair. It is really a good airlines.
Greetings
Mike


User currently offlineN-156F From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (13 years 3 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 2144 times:

AA is an American carrier, therefore they *must* obey United States rules at all times. Carriers based in the U.S. who have served you alcohol have broken the law, and had you been an ATF agent, the cabin crew would all have been liable to go to jail. The AA F/A responded as she should have, if a bit rudely. You, however, had no business smarting back at her because she, unlike most F/As you've encountered, cares about her job and her felony-free record.

User currently offlineFlyVirgin744 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1313 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (13 years 3 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 2144 times:

N-156F, out of all the people who responded so far, not one has been sure if US law applies to the airlines internationaly. Ironminds brought up a good point arguing that the law would not apply, Trintocan brought up that it should. And you on the other hand didn't read my whole report. The FA didn't respond back the way she should have. If you would have read my report carefully, you would have realized that. And even if you are correct about the law, then she still is wrong because then she would have lied to me. She told me it was "AA policy", you told me its the law. Now why would she lie to me like that, surely you'd think she would tell me its against the law over "its AA policy." Infact, I would have rather had your answer. And whats this about you saying I "smarted back", I did no such thing, I was denied something that I'm usually given in the same circumstance and I just wanted to find out why. I wouldn't have needed to ask her (what you call "smarting back") if she wouldn't have been a bitch in the first place. And obviously she doesn't care about her job because once again, she wouldn't have been a bitch in the first place.  Big grin


Sometimes I go about in pity for myself and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky.
User currently offlineFlyVirgin744 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1313 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (13 years 3 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2145 times:

Jason, thank you for reading my report and replying. As for my comment back to you, I would not order liquor anywhere that I would be considered underaged. I have flown international flights many times before, and on my first flight, I didn't ask for alcohol, I was offered. They came around and asked me, not vice versa. Since then I have flown round trip 5 times to Europe each time having no rule with alcohol age. That is the reason why I felt I could order wine on this flight, not because I felt I might get away with underaged drinking, because I thought it was common practice, not breaking any rules.

If the US law is applied, I would respect the FA not giving me the drink, infact I wouldn't want her to risk her job knowing its just so I can have a glass of wine, it ain't worth it. You are making me out to be the bad guy here and I am not. But like I just explained, she told me it wasn't law, an AA rule, even if that risks her job, fine, I don't want the drink. As soon as she said that, we left her alone. I understood her point of view as soon as she gave me her reason, so you asking me to think about it, I feel it is not possible because I always had. If this had been my first international flight, I wouldn't have asked for a drink b/c as a "mild-mannered teenager" i would have known better. But after one intl flight after the other, I assumed for everyone it was ok. As of now I am still unsure so I will do some research.



Sometimes I go about in pity for myself and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky.
User currently offlineN-156F From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (13 years 3 weeks 3 days 21 hours ago) and read 2140 times:

FlyVirgin744, saying "we're in the middle of the ocean" as a response is smarting back. Period. The flight attendant is well-aware of the 3-mile limit, and is well-aware that DOT rules apply to *all* aircraft, vehicles, and ships of U.S. registry. And DOT rules clearly state 21. It's law. Her replying that it's AA policy is good- it's not only law, *but also* AA policy.
If your plane or cruise ship carries a U.S. registry, it follows U.S. rules. Airplanes just happen to be enforced more strictly. Her reply may have been rude, but your "middle of the ocean" comment was pathetically juvenile. On board, the F/As are in charge, and if you ask for alcohol and they say no, then too bad. Don't go off on them with crap about being far from the 3-mile limit- as long as you're on that plane, you're on U.S. territory. Laws are very clear about this. If a Vietnamese woman has a baby on an American Airlines jet, that baby is a U.S. citizen. If you have alcohol on a U.S. jet, you're breaking U.S. laws. Period. I hope someday an ATF agent is on a plane when you order it and are served, because the liquor will be confiscated, the F/A arrested, and the airline fined. You could face charges yourself.

Just some food for thought.


User currently offlineFlyVirgin744 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1313 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (13 years 3 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2132 times:

N-156f, you are not understanding me and I feel your remarks back to me saying "I hope someday an ATF agent is on a plane when you order it and are served, because the liquor will be confiscated, the F/A arrested, and the airline fined. You could face charges yourself." are pathetically juvenile .

Read this next statement please, for it is what I have been trying to get across to you: WE DID NOT KNOW THAT WE WERE BREAKING ANY RULES WHEN WE ORDERED THE DRINKS. Was it so wrong that we wanted to know why they wouldn't give us the drink when we had never had that problem before. Our remark about the ocean was just used to justify our reasoning not as what you call "juvenile". It would have never come to that if the flight attendent would have told us why she couldn't give us the drinks in the first place. If she could risk her job over it, I wouldn't want the damn drink. How was I suppose to know "If your plane or cruise ship carries a U.S. registry, it follows U.S. rules." I didn't! It sure as hell doesn't apply to ocean liners so I figured why planes. My knowledge of commercial aviation is extensive, but my knowledge on how certain laws apply to the DOT and FAA is not. So I simply asked her why. I don't want to go through this again so please read my last reply to Jason's topic which obviously you didn't read before you typed your last message. Thanks and once again, I am not the bad guy here, there are no bad people here. The flight attendent was rude, not because she didn't serve us drinks, she was rude from the second the flight started. Although I have said it before, I will say it again because I know you don't read well: I don't want anyone to get in trouble over me getting a drink on a flight, I had never encountered that problem and I wanted to know what the rule was. Sorry that offends you.

I understand perfectly what you are getting at, but it was not the case in the situation I was in. I don't want to discuss this under this topic anymore because this issue was not what I wrote the trip report for. If you have anything else to say to me, I would be delighted to discuss it with you over email.



Sometimes I go about in pity for myself and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky.
User currently offlineIronminds From Australia, joined Apr 2001, 556 posts, RR: 3
Reply 15, posted (13 years 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 2131 times:

Amen, FlyVirgin744! If I'm ever sitting next to you on a flight, I'll share my wine with you anytime!

User currently offlineAirliners From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2001, 56 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (13 years 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 2121 times:

Hi, im flying from LHR - GVA next week - how long was the flight? what kind of entertainment is there on board? Whats the food like? and the plane? Great trip report.

Airliners


User currently offlineFlyVirgin744 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1313 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (13 years 3 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 2112 times:

Hello Airliners. The flight could have been very short but was longer for a few reasons. There were very large thunderstorms along eastern/central France so we did quite a bit of maneuvering around them. Second, as you're probably quite aware of, LHR is a very busy place in the morning. We circled the area many times before we were put it on final. We took off about 10 minutes late and landed early so that we actually got to the gate at our arrival time. So the flight was around an hour and 20 minutes. Food was a sub (a bit weird for breakfast but it worked!), yogurt, grapes, cookie, and all the croissants you can eat. Entertainment was a video presentation of "Just Pranks" which I found terribly harsh but I couldn't help but laugh (as long as I'm not the person in the video  Smile). The plane was gorgeous, I checked the tail and my census showed it was delivered in 95. The seats were wide and legroom was plenty for such a short flight. Its a great airline and you will definitely enjoy your trip. Your flight will probably be shorter since you won't have to go through LHR arrivals and GVA is a small airport. Enjoy the view coming in over lake Geneva, ask for a seat on the left side of the plane (left facing flightdeck from cabin).


Sometimes I go about in pity for myself and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky.
User currently offlineAdam84 From United States of America, joined exactly 15 years ago today! , 1400 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (13 years 3 weeks 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 2106 times:

Well what someone above said, American Airlines may be quite strict about alcohol. For example, serving alcohol to anyone under 21 may be a terminable offense. I know alot of us may find some companies policies extremely stupid (I do) we cant really change them. For example, when I worked at Kmart (where we sold alcohol, cigarettes and unedited cd's) if anyone, even a manager was caught selling any of the above to anyone underage they would be terminated on the spot no questions asked. So if I was in that f/a's shoes and AA had a strict policies on serving to anyone under 21 damn skippy Im not going to serve anyone under 21 considering the persons job would be at risk.

User currently offlineFlyVirgin744 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 1313 posts, RR: 1
Reply 19, posted (13 years 3 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 2103 times:

Adam: Neither would I.


Sometimes I go about in pity for myself and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky.
User currently offlineBlink182 From Azerbaijan, joined Oct 1999, 5480 posts, RR: 15
Reply 20, posted (13 years 3 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 2095 times:

FlyVirgin744- As people have said, serving liquor to people under 21 is illegal on a United States registered plane, so she might have thought,"Well, as long as it isn't too much liquor, I can get away with it".
I have been overseas in Europe(and will be again later this summer) but have never had the guts to say "Hey, I'll have a molson on the rocks"  Smile
rgds,
blink182



Give me a break, I created this username when I was a kid...
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