metsfan1
Posts: 100
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:57 am

Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 2:49 pm

Going to be flying Virgin Atlantic to London in the winter. Just wondering which airplane is better to schedule my flight on, the 343, 346 and 744. Never flown the 340's but have flown the 744 numerous times on other airlines. Which is a better choice? I am inclined to book the 346 because it is brand new, slightly rare, and supposedly has the new Virgin IFE. Any suggestions? Also if I fly the airbuses, any suggestions as to seats?
 
PVD757
Posts: 3021
Joined: Sun Aug 24, 2003 8:23 pm

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 3:11 pm

Fly the new one. If you already have flown the other two, why not treat yourself to this? You'll have something to talk about. Plus, I'll be jealous because I never fly anywhere internationally.
 
tavve
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2003 4:24 pm

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 4:58 pm

My first intercontinental flight and at the same time my first widebody flight should have been in a VS 747 from LHR to LAX in late -99. To make a long story short I missed the connection at LHR but was very lucky to be on the next flight that day. I was lucky but also disappointed, I wanted to fly a 747 not a 343. Once in the air I loved that aircraft more than anything else I had ever flown. Actually that's when I became really interested in aviation. The service was outstanding and I was amazed by the flight entertainment system.

Two weeks later I flew CO from LAX to RDU via IAH. Didn't make the connection in IAH because the first flight was diverted to PHX due to a pregnant woman. I hope everything turned out well for her!

After some more CO flights I was about to fly a VS 747 from BOS to LHR. This flight was almost 24 hours delayed because of a break problem. When we finally took off I was surprised that it was so noisy. The 343 had been much more pleasant and relaxing to fly. No, sorry, I don't know if I flew a 744 or which type of 747 it was.

My advice is clear: Choose an Airbus flight. It's much more relaxing. An extra bonus is that the chance of getting an isle or window seat is much higher in a 340 than in a 747. If 346 is an option I would have chosen that one. As you say it is rare and as PVD757 says "You will have something to talk about".

How can I say VS has good service? All I really can compare to is the service when I made a round trip with UA 777 from LHR to ORD as a part of a longer trip from GOT to SAN. The service sucked. The flight attendant wasn't just not nice, she was really rude. We all looked at each other several times confirming that we all thought she was behaving very bad. I tried to get other attendants attention but that was absolutely impossible.

Although my heart beats for the 330/340 series I have to admit that the 777 is a great ac.

If you wonder: Yes I missed the connecting flight to GOT at LHR on my way back from BOS.

Finally, this would be my priority:

  1. 346

  2. 343

  3. 744

GOT, that's where I live
 
airchabum
Posts: 754
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2001 8:21 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 6:04 pm

Metsfan1

I'd go for the 600 if I were you. They all have the new v:port video-on-demand IFE and like you say they are a bit rare. Currently only the VS9/10 is planned on a 600 although the VS45/46 is showing as a 600 from the end of March 2004.

Cheers
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
Pe@rson
Posts: 16004
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:29 pm

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 6:35 pm

This would be my order:

1) 346
2) 343
3) 744

Could you not fly either 1) or 2) outbound and the other inbound?
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
metsfan1
Posts: 100
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:57 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 10:28 pm

Thanks for the advice. I will try and schedule at least one leg on the 346. I have flown the 332 before on Swissair a number of years ago. I remember it being a relatively nice airplane although I felt a bit cramped as opposed to the 777, which I happen to love flying. Are the 343/346 the same or is it just a matter of which airline you fly on?
 
manzoori
Posts: 1459
Joined: Sun Sep 22, 2002 7:08 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 10:33 pm

Are Virgin Atlantic even using the A340-600 on the north Atlantic routes?

I thought they were using them primarily for the London-Narita and London-Hong Kong routes, so your choice may be restricted to A340-300 and the 747-400.

Cheers

Rez
 Big thumbs up
Flightlineimages DOT Com Photographer & Web Editor. RR Turbines Specialist
 
metsfan1
Posts: 100
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:57 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 10:49 pm

They started using the 346 on VS 9/10 into and JFK. We now get all 3 Virgin types in New York.
 
Pe@rson
Posts: 16004
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:29 pm

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Wed Sep 10, 2003 11:01 pm

You're lucky: VS operates, during the winter, one 343, one 346 and one 744 per day each routing LHR-JFK-LHR.

JFK-LHR

VS004, a 744, leaves JFK at 1930 and arrives into LHR the next day at 0710.

VS046, a 346, leaves JFK at 2110 and arrives into LHR the next day at 0850.

VS010, a 343, leaves JFK at 2310 and arrives into LHR the next day at 1050.

LHR-JFK

VS045, a 343, leaves LHR at 0930 and arrives into JFK the same day at 1210pm.

VS003, a 744, leaves LHR at 1400 and arrives into JFK the same day at 1640.

VS009, a 346, leaves JFK at 1830 and arrives into JFK the same day at 2110.

Take your pick! Big grin Hopefully you'll be able to fly aboard both the 343 and 346.  Big grin
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
airchabum
Posts: 754
Joined: Sat Oct 20, 2001 8:21 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Thu Sep 11, 2003 12:11 am

Ok then, hot off the presses!! Just heard today that for the winter schedule (26Oct-27Mar) VS9/10 reverts to a 343 and VS45/46 will be on 346. It'll probably all change again though......
Biggidy biggidy bong
 
planesarecool
Posts: 3208
Joined: Sun Nov 11, 2001 12:37 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Thu Sep 11, 2003 12:26 am

Manzoori:

The A340-600 operated VS021/022 (i think) to/from Washington for some period of time before changing back to the B747-400. Now, for the winter, it's going back to New York Big grin

-Stephen
 
SInGAPORE_AIR
Posts: 11619
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2000 4:06 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Thu Sep 11, 2003 12:33 am

Most definately fly the A340-600.

The service and food are subjective to taste and what you're used to.

But with regards to IFE, you'll experience the best IFE in the sky (if all the features work which at the moment they don't so you won't), but you'll be greatly entertained by a choice of over 50 movies and CDs with Audio and Video on Demand and a 9" screen in Economy.
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
Demoose
Posts: 1891
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2001 8:06 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Thu Sep 11, 2003 1:01 am

I see the rehab is working Singapore_Air, congrats on managing to not mention you know what!  Laugh out loud

I may be flying this route with VS next spring, 346 would be excellent yet i've still never been on a 747 so I'm not too bothered which I end up on.
Take a ride...fly across the sky
 
SInGAPORE_AIR
Posts: 11619
Joined: Mon Nov 13, 2000 4:06 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Thu Sep 11, 2003 1:23 am

Nice, but I am under no such rehab. That was a lapse on my part due to a sudden heavy workload that needed me to expedite my posting.
Anyone can fly, only the best Soar.
 
Pe@rson
Posts: 16004
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:29 pm

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Thu Sep 11, 2003 2:04 am

And you didn't mention it in your last post, either!  Big grin
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
richardw
Posts: 3136
Joined: Tue May 08, 2001 3:17 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Thu Sep 11, 2003 6:20 am

Is Premium Economy best on the A346?
 
metsfan1
Posts: 100
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2003 12:57 am

RE: Virgin JFK-LHR, 343, 346, Or 744?

Thu Sep 11, 2003 10:02 am

Does anyone know the 346 schedule for sure? Someone mentioned that the 346 flies 045/046, but according to the schedule I just looked at the 346 is on 10/9 and 45/46 is still a 343. Can anyone confirm either of these?

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