phil747
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Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:20 am

I have been a loyal BA flyer and Silver Exec Card holder for years. I have got to the point where I have had my fill of BA. The cabins are tired and shabby and the crew are generally rude and sarcastic. Last week on a 777 flight back to the UK, I was sitting in WT+ and the cabin attendant asked the woman in front of me sitting at the bulkhead before take off to either wear her shoes or put them in the overhead locker. Not an unreasonable request until he followed the request swiftly and a sarcastic smile adding the words "if thats not too much trouble". The comment was totally unwarranted but I said nothing. Later in the flight when I asked to buy a watch from the Duty Free shop, I was told it was in First Class. The attendant really didn't want to help. Leaving aside the food which is generally not up to much on any airline, the 777 IFE is impossible to watch on the small grainy screen which populates most of the 777s. So the question is who is the best out of LHR or are they all much of a muchness?
 
beakerltn
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:24 am

Where do you generally fly into? - it makes quite a difference..
300/319/320/321/330/732/733/734/73G/738/744/772/77W/146/EMB135/EMB145
 
phil747
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:26 am

Generally into JFK, EWR, IAD and MIA
 
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Mikey86
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:27 am

In terms of frequencies, I would say British Airways.
mikey86 - Greenslopes, Queensland
 
phil747
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:29 am

LOL! and in terms of quality of in flight product?
 
crazyfoo88
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:29 am

Haha did you even read the OP's first message? Looking purely at schedules alone, your next bet would be AA through JFK or United/Continental through EWR/IAD. Depends really on the product I guess!

Quoting mikey86 (Reply 3):
crazyfoo88
 
330guy
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:29 am

While not from LHR the best airline iv flown to the U.S. is CO to EWR from DUB (I dont know about the new UA but I doubt its too much different yet)
I could not really fault much if anything, Iv flown BA out of LHR to YVR and I enjoyed it quite a lot but I get your point about being a bit tired of them.
Aircraft flown: a300/10/20/21/30/40, b727/37/47/57/67/, DC9, MD80-90, l1011, f50, atr42/72, shorts360, pc12
 
DullesFlyer
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:30 am

I have flown UA, AA and BA into/out of Heathrow, and they are ok, but nothing memorable. I have friends who have flow VS to and from the States, and say they will never fly anyone else on that route again. I'll be on the IAD-LHR route via UA later this month. Last year I went out of my way to transfer via FRA on LH (LHR - FRA - IAD).
 
phil747
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:38 am

Has anyone tried the new Delta services to JFK or MIA out of LHR?
 
GCT64
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:38 am

In the last 12 months I've flown: BA, NZ, AA, UA, CO, AC (via YYZ), VS, EI (via DUB) ex LHR to / from the US, all in Economy class. The best is definitely AC and I go out of my way to fly on them, although pre-clearance at DUB on EI works well and they are well up the list of my preferred options. The worst is definitely UA, I will not fly them transatlantic.
Flown in: A30B,A306,A310,A319,A320,A321,A332,A333,A343,A346,A359,A388,BA11,BU31,B190,(..54 more types..),VC10,WESX
 
anstar
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:44 am

If you fly mainly in WT+ (as that is the cabin you mentioned) then the VS offering is much better than BA and the other carriers dont have a similar product. With Premium economy you get extra luggage, priority checkin, pre take off drinks, hot towels etc and better food and wine than economy (unlike BA). They also fly non stop to JFK/EWR/IAD/MIA.

If you fly mainly in economy, then I would say most carriers will be very similar - awful!
 
MYT332
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:51 am

Quoting phil747 (Thread starter):
and the crew are generally rude and sarcastic

If you are willing to stick with BA a bit longer then you'll potentially notice some changes in crew types as more Mixed Fleet start flying. For instance, LAS is now the first 747 route operated by solely by Mixed Fleet crews. If any of my European flights with Mixed Fleet crews are anything to go by, you'll notice a subtle change in attitudes and the way the service is delivered.

In my opinion I've actually found it quite a refreshing change and no, I'm not just talking about the hats! I think moving forward the idea is to keep some of the service values of 'old BA' whilst bringing in a more personal, down to earth touch. This isn't of course to say all old BA crew are bad, as obviously they aren't, but some change will be a good thing.
One Life, Live it.
 
G-CIVP
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:52 am

Quoting anstar (Reply 10):
If you fly mainly in economy, then I would say most carriers will be very similar - awful!

Got to agree with Anstar - if you are sitting down the back, it's pretty awful. There isn't any glamour in flying anymore, it's more of an endurance test.

As Phil747 comments, sadly even as an old BA stalwart I have to agree. I recently flew in Club Europe and was less than impressed. The aircraft was grubby inside and out, the seats were shabby and the state of the bathroom left alot to be desired. Then again, I've flown the competition and it's all much of a muchness and it boils down to who is the best of a bad bunch.
 
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vhtje
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 12:17 pm

Have you contacted customer relations at BA, and told them about the shoe incident? I am sure they would love to hear your comments. If you look at the flyertalk forums you can see that BA are very responsive to complaints left here.

I travel to SFO about 4 times a year and I am currently spending 4 months in ORD in two week on, two week off rotations. I agree with you that the cabins are very tired but the new 77W is a great product. I just wish they would improve their catering, but then again I can get a fill up in the lounge before departure.

I personally have only had a poor flight attendant once - I was actually at the point of asking the Little Miss B*tch (LMB) to get the CSD so that I could discuss the LMB's performance with the CSD. Magically, though, LMB turned into an angel and couldn't have been more helpful for the rest of the flight. I've always wondered: did she look at the passenger manifest and spot that I was a frequent flyer, thus accounting for the sudden change in attitude? I find the BA crews otherwise terrific.

One bug bear I currently have is being bussed at terminal 5. What is this, Ryanair? My last 3 arrivals into LHR have all been bussed!

But my biggest complaint about BA across the pond is the lack of premium seating, or rather, the prices they are charging. I usually travel in Club but certainly not at the prices they are currently charging - my client would have a fit. Two weeks ago my company paid £1,600 for a return economy ticket to ORD, admittedly bought two days before I flew. BA then wanted me to fork out an eye watering £2,800 to upgrade to Club on the return leg.

In comparision, we usually pay around £3,200 for a return Club to SYD in January, admittedly booked well in advance.

On the other hand all the flights I am taking at the moment are absolutely chock full and if they are charging those prices, BA must be raking it in, and good on them for that, I suppose. I suppose this is must be a seasonal thing?
I only turn left when boarding aircraft. Well, mostly. All right, sometimes. OH OKAY - rarely.
 
PI4EVER
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 1:51 pm

Of US carriers, I would recommend DL for the following reasons:
1. Use of 767-400 aircraft on routes to JFK and MIA.
2. In-seat entertainment.
3. New Economy Comfort offers full bar service, increased legroom and recline in forward Y cabin.
4. Food is somewhat standard Y class type hot and snack service but overall varied and reasonably good.
5. Personable and professional crews.
A negative is the DL terminal complex in JFK. Can be a mess. MIA's terminal is attractive and relatively ease of use in comparison to AA's vast hub there.
Since you are not a SkyMiles Elite member, you will have to pay for Y+ but well worth the cost and a good gauge for you to consider DL service to the US for future flights.
I feel DL service overall in Y, Y+ and J is superior to AA for service to JFK and MIA. Cannot from experience comment on CO/UA services to EWR and IAD.
Thomas
watch what you want. you may get it.
 
daviation
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 5:59 pm

I flew Continental EWR-LHR-EWR just a month ago. Apart from my disappointment about being downgauged from a 777 to a 757, I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised by the whole experience. The gate agents were friendly when I requested that my daughter and I take a section with a vacant middle seat. The flight to LHR was ahead of schedule. The legroom was comfortable enough, the food was decent, the IFE was fine, the flight attendants were pleasant. The return flight was equally as good. No complaints at all - Continental were very professional.

The following week, I had a short flight on USAirways. My return flight was delayed for four hours, for no reason that I could see. The gate agents were as rude as humanly possible. I really couldn't believe their behavior at the gate. I will say however that the flight crew were very pleasant.
PlaneFlown:717,727,737,747,757,767,777,DC8,DC9,DC10,L1011,F100,A300,319,320,321,330,340,CRJ,ERJ,E190,Av85,DH8,Beaver,ATR
 
lhr380
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 6:32 pm

Quoting anstar (Reply 10):
With Premium economy you get extra luggage, priority checkin, pre take off drinks, hot towels etc and better food and wine than economy

You get extra luggage on BA as well. You will soon start to see changes in WTP and I cant wait for them to happen. Too long has it been left behind.

Priority check in wont really work for WTP as you can check in at any of the open zones in T5 so that's not much of a contender
(The views on this site are my own and no one elses)
 
jetblast
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Tue Jul 05, 2011 7:49 pm

Quoting lhr380 (Reply 16):
You will soon start to see changes in WTP and I cant wait for them to happen. Too long has it been left behind.

I have seen new pillowcases and headrests being used in WTP over the last week or so, to go with the new blankets and amenity kits rolled out recently...the changes are slow but they are coming.
Speedbird Concorde One
 
milemaster
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Wed Jul 06, 2011 12:49 am

I'd say BA would be the superior product, but keep in mind it's basically the same honor as being the skinniest kid in fat camp.
 
slinky09
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Thu Jul 07, 2011 6:10 am

Define best?

For routes and frequency it has to be BA.

For preflight and onboard comfort and amenity I'd choose VS.

None of the US carriers can match either still, although DL is improving and CO is always good for food. I'd avoid AA like the plague (to many years of having to suffer that tied in by corporate contracts!), and UA I have never flown with (but do believe how bad it is ...).

If you fly PE then VS is still leagues ahead of WTP and all the E+ offerings. BA and VS are closer in J but offer several differences and people know what they like.
 
CHRISBA777ER
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Thu Jul 07, 2011 10:42 am

I fly T/A a lot - say four or five times a year, and have done for more than a decade. I'm basing my opinions on travelling in Y.

For IFE the VS A346s are excellent.

For seat comfort I like the leather seats in Y with the block headrests on BA.

For service CO is lightyears ahead of anyone else ex-LHR to the US.

For food nobody really stands out - lets say I've had fewer really poor inedible meals on VS than the others.

For terminal/airport experience BA win hands down as T5 is an absolute joy compared to any of the others.

For FF programme I like CO for StarAlliance. Generous perks, mileage etc. BA and VS seem stingy by comparison i feel.

For price DL is usually cheapest but I wont fly them because I dont collect SkyTeam miles and I dislike them as an airline.

In summary - Its between BA, VS and CO. Given that CO is now hit and miss because of the merger, I'd choose VS unless you are guaranteed a BA 77W as they are absolutely lovely and a real step up.
What do you mean you dont have any bourbon? Do you know how far it is to Houston? What kind of airline is this???
 
apodino
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Thu Jul 07, 2011 5:31 pm

Quoting daviation (Reply 15):
The following week, I had a short flight on USAirways. My return flight was delayed for four hours, for no reason that I could see. The gate agents were as rude as humanly possible. I really couldn't believe their behavior at the gate. I will say however that the flight crew were very pleasant.

Was this rude in LHR? Because if its LHR, with all the airlines that the handling agency there would handle, I can't say this is exclusively a US problem. The reason the flight was probably delayed is because the inbound plane from PHL was likely late due to some issues with PHL, and this delayed the return flight.


DL was pretty good before 9-11, but I flew them to NRT post merger, and my biggest gripe was after an ANC diversion for volcanic ash, the crew didn't do any extra beverage services, which I thought would have been a kind gesture on their part. Coming back was nothing special, though it was a very empty flight.


Given all the cities you mention, my money would go to VS. Their product is very good, their customer service is good, and on the US side, their check in's will be much less crowded due to them being the only flight as opposed to a US airline.
 
daviation
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Mon Jul 11, 2011 1:33 pm

Quoting apodino (Reply 21):
Was this rude in LHR? Because if its LHR, with all the airlines that the handling agency there would handle, I can't say this is exclusively a US problem. The reason the flight was probably delayed is because the inbound plane from PHL was likely late due to some issues with PHL, and this delayed the return flight.

No, this flight was a week after I returned from London. The rude behavior took place right at US's hub: Philadelphia. There was no excuse for it. Mild-mannered passengers approached the desk for information and assistance, and the agents nearly bit their heads off. This has been my experience with gate staff at US as well.
PlaneFlown:717,727,737,747,757,767,777,DC8,DC9,DC10,L1011,F100,A300,319,320,321,330,340,CRJ,ERJ,E190,Av85,DH8,Beaver,ATR
 
02hilliert
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RE: Best Airline Out Of Heathrow To The States

Mon Jul 11, 2011 7:37 pm

Quoting GCT64 (Reply 9):
In the last 12 months I've flown: BA, NZ, AA, UA, CO, AC (via YYZ), VS, EI (via DUB) ex LHR to / from the US, all in Economy class. The best is definitely AC and I go out of my way to fly on them, although pre-clearance at DUB on EI works well and they are well up the list of my preferred options. The worst is definitely UA, I will not fly them transatlantic.

I'd agree here, customer service is excellent on AC, food is pretty good, IFE is good, and connecting through YYZ is really easy. Seats are also very comfortable for an Economy product.

Having said all that, I've never had any problems with BA - I just prefer AC...
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