It’s time for another snapshot, this time focusing on the passenger experience between London Heathrow and Chicago O’Hare International aboard American Airlines 87.
For those of you who are new to the blog:
- Trip Reports – These are full deep-dive reports taking you into the experience and the small things… as well as the big things!
- Snapshots – These are bite-sized reviews that show you the basic product in some nice gentle headlines (and normally, only images shot on the phone)
Premium check-in was handled at Check-in zone E at Heathrow Airport. It seems that AA has gone back to opening check-in at 5:45 instead of 5 am. I had attempted to check-in online, however, it seemed that had been flagged for extra security.
I was informed of the lounge location, and my bags were tagged to O’Hare.
Both the Cathay Pacific lounges were marked as available and visited. I skipped the British Airways lounge.
Cathay Pacific Lounge
American Airlines Lounge
I chose to base myself in the American Airlines lounge – mainly for conscience, but as my flight had rolling delays due to a maintenance issue. This causes us to miss our initial departure window of 8:40.
A new departure time was re-timed for 11 am, then 12 midday and finally at 1 pm.
Boarding was from Gate 26 in the Terminal 3 complex. I was selected for secondary screening – which was handled swiftly and courteously by the security staff.
Boarding was by zones. By the time I got onboard, zone 5 was being called.
In addition, leaflets regarding EC261 were handed out.
It’s a Boeing 787-8. This is one of the many planes fitted with a three-class cabin – with business class, premium economy and main cabin loaded.
I was seated in the Premium Economy Cabin on this Dreamliner. This is laid out in a 2-3-2 layout, with seats by Collins Aerospace.
Food and drink
After takeoff, a snack service was carried out.
Mid-flight ice cream was offered.
A pre-arrival snack of pies was offered – both on a veggie and chicken option
In flight entertainment
This was provided by a Panasonic ex3 system, with both a physical interface and a remote control. The user interface remains consistent across the fleet, with a mixture of content and LiveTV offerings.
Wi-fi was provisioned by a Panasonic Ku solution that seems to be improved, with much higher bandwidth observed in-flight, compared to previous experiences. Ku coverage was a little spotty, with areas that dropped for a short while before coverage resumed.
The full review of American Airlines 87 will follow soon!
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