Book it Danno! British Airways BA001 London City Airport – Shannon, Shannon to New York-JFK
EDITORS NOTE: IMAGE HEAVY.
- A Rock, A Hard Place and Tier Points
- To Birmingham Airport, Ryanair FR693 Birmingham to Dublin
- A morning around Dublin
- Dublin Airport, BA4467 Dublin Airport to London City Airport
- Travelodge, London City Airport
- A Morning at London City Airport
- British Airways BA001 London City Airport – Shannon, Shannon to New York-JFK
- Über Takes on Manhattan
- Holiday Inn Express, JFK
- JFK T8, US Airways Flight US510 New York JFK to Phoenix, Arizona
- US Airways Club/Admiral’s Club, US694 Phoenix Sky Harbour to Honolulu
- The Aston Beach Waikiki
- Travel Plus… Doing – Exploring the Diamond Head Trail
- Travel Plus… Doing – Pearl Harbour and The USS Arizona Memorial
- The joy of British Airways Rebooking
- Honolulu Airport, American Airline Lounge, US693 Honolulu International to Phoenix
- US425 Phoenix to New York-JFK, Economy Class
- JFK Omnishambles
- BA002 JFK to London City Airport
- Involuntary Downgrade Chaos
- BA4462 London City Airport to Dublin
- A Five Hour Dublin Layover
- BA0837 Dublin Airport to London Heathrow Airport in Club Europe
- Homeward bound
- Aftermath: Points and Reflections…
With boarding called it was time to head out on the tarmac and over to the waiting Airbus A318 that would be taking us to Shannon and New York today.
BA001 London City Airport to New York JFK via Shannon Airport
British Airways, Airbus A318. Seat 8F, Club World
3451 miles flown, 210 Tier Points Earned, 3451 Base Avios + 3451 Bonus Avios
I was welcomed aboard and begun to head to the back of the plane – well I might be flying Business Class, but I’m still at the back of the plane.
Some things never change.
Boarding was quick (well it was going to be with less than 32 people aboard. Even in the back row of the plane by the time the doors went to close I had the entire row to myself.
Yes. A row of business class seats. Life doesn’t get much better.
A welcome announcement was made and a safety demonstration given. With the formalities done, the plane begun its taxi – initially to a hold point, waiting for two planes to depart, the a taxi down to the end of the runway.
And as we know – take offs at London City Airport are powerful. This flight wasn’t any different.
With fast take off, our plane did a couple of turns, climbing up above East London and out into the English Countryside
Menus were distributed, with some interesting options on the menu.
As usual the food out of London City is a little different from that catered out of Heathrow – in other words, it’s a lot more edible I’ve found than what you get from Heathrow.
This flight was no different.
I went for the Mixed Starter – and it was nicely chilled along with some edible prawns, wrap and some mozzarella based things:
A nice combination – more of an amuse-bouche as opposed to a starter – least of all, we’d be on the ground in a short while dealing with the joy of US Immigration. In addition, not getting drunk before US Immigration is considered 1) good manners and 2) a good idea if you’re clearing immigration without too many questions.
Meanwhile, at the back of the plane, it was quiet….
The view from here
The seat is not the usual Club World Seat (with its Ying Yang Style) – rather it’s all the seats point forward. And I don’t mind this in the least – least of all there’s a privacy divider if needed. However, as I had no-one else in the row, I wasn’t exactly moaning.
However, with such a short hop, plates were collected in due time, and the path down to Shannon was set.
Descending through the cloud, it was not what I’d call ideal conditions out there in the least
The captain and co-pilot fought to get the plane down on the tarmac, with a go-around seeming a distinct possibility.
By distinct, this was by learning of this by chatting with the cabin crew after landing. None the less, it was a rather squally landing.
With a short taxi to the local gate, our little Airbus A318 wobbled to the gate. By wobble, the wind was rocking the tailfin quite a fair bit.
With the air-bridge connected, it was time to make tracks for us to clear immigration, and for the plane to get some fuel.
A Shannon Stop-over
As usual, it’s a matter of “following the signs” to the transit areas. Thankfully, Shannon Airport is designed logically enough for you to follow the signs and the crowd happily.
Soon enough, we were out to the semi-public area, where it was time to clear US Immigration and Customs.
As I had no luggage in the hold this trip, it was straight through to the security check, which was passed through with the minimum of fuss.
It was then onto US Immigration, and I was queried my business. The moment I said the word “Hawaii”, my passport was stamped and I was sent on my way.
Total time: 5 minutes. Beat that anywhere in the USA.
Once through immigration, it was a matter of heading back to the waiting area as we awaited the onward flight to board.
With only a short wait as everyone made their way through, it was time to board the plane again for the long leg to New York.
A boarding pass blip and rip, and I was on my way.
Heading down the jetway, I was welcomed back aboard – and headed to the back row, where there were occupants in the left hand side – the occupants being the pilots of BA3 who were hitching a lift to New York.
Meanwhile outside, conditions were deteriorating still, with the weather playing its merry hell, and the wind rocking the plane.
Good thing I can control my nausea.
iPads were deployed Once we were all aboard, and cleared for departure, our plane rocked its way around Shannon Airport, before beginning a few long takeoff roll for the upcoming 8 hour 15 flight – a full hour longer than normal.
With a fair amount of power, our A318 took through to the sky, and battled its way up the cloud layer until smoother skies were found. It found them eventually – it just took some time.
Amenity kits were made available, this time with a draw-sting style bag with loads of goodies inside – pretty much the same as a Club World bag.
Headphones were at seat already, with the BA iPad IFE system (which you could hack together into a GhettoIFE system in you had five minutes)
BA Noise Cancelling headphones. They work rather well. Not as good as the Bose’s offered by American Airlines, but they’ll do.
Food and drink was given out for this long segment over the pond.
Nuts, water and…. Pink Champagne. Well, it had to be done.
It is indeed pink.
Salad was offered with a starter as well as a bread
The mains came – and yes – I did say mains. Mainly as I was offered both… and I couldn’t make my mind up.
Rib of Beef with jalapeños, miso, sushi rice and caramilsed pineapple.
Paired with a braised shoulder of lamb with buttered pappardelle, tomatoes, peas and mint.
Both main dishes were good, but I’d have to go for the beef. Very succulent, and with the Japanese touches made it very enjoyable.
Meanwhile outside, things have settled down, even if we were crawling across the pond.
Desert followed, with a choice of cheese or a chocolate nought soufflé. Doesn’t take a genius what I chose.
And yes, it was very delectable.
With the food consumed and the tables cleared, it was time to relax – and that meant putting the seat into a semi flat position – with the top bit raised up a bit. Who needs pillows when you have an adjustable bed?
And with that, I crashed out for a good few hours.
When I awoke, dusk was beginning to settle outside, with a very pretty sunset outside.
Meanwhile, the lights came up in the cabin, as the pre-arrival snack was served.
Pre-arrival snack started with sandwiches
Well, it’s the tought that counts. Better options appeared with strombolis and Hot Ruben sandwiches. Being at the back of the plane… I had both.
There are small advantages to life in row 8.
The warm items really improved the basic sandwich service, whilst the onboard coffee… was just coffee. Nothing special to note.
Outside, night had fallen as we begun to descend for JFK.
The cabin also decended into darkness for the approach into JFK.
The cabin was sent into full darkness for the final part of descent.
Manhattan appeared in the distance, showing we were near our destination
With Manhattan in the distance, the wheels came down and our final approach into JFK.
With a fast landing like this, we were soon taxing at a rate of knots around JFK, to terminal 7 – the BA terminal.
Our plane came to a stop, and the lights came up. Next was the wait whilst we found a gate – there was no one to operate it. A short wait, and we were released.
I took the time to get ready and notify friends where I was and where I was heading.
Finally, we were allowed off the plane.
I thanked the crew, and off I went.
Overall: British Airways 001 is always a special flight in my book – and it still is, with a very tightly customer focused service and a great seat/bed product to match. The food is a cut above of what is catered normally, and it shows how much effort BA put into this service.
Whilst the extra hour in the air was… well – to a point unwelcome, it gave me the time to relax and enjoy the flight – as opposed rushing from A to B.
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