More Pleasure, More Business.
To Chicago and Hamburg with American Airlines and British Airways
Featuring Aircraft Interiors Expo, The Crystal Cabin Awards, and a lot more.
In this divided trip report
Part One: The Pleasure
- Part 1
- Two o’clock in the morning. I love this time of day. Honestly.
- The Cathay Pacific, American Airlines Lounges… and a five-hour delay
- AA87 London Heathrow to Chicago O’Hare International (Premium Economy)
- Crowne Plaza O’Hare
- A photographer’s paradise? The Central Camera Company
- Hyatt Regency O’Hare
- Airplane Art Extra: From the Balcony of the Hyatt Regency O’Hare
- Back to the Bunny, British Airways Lounge
- BA294 Chicago O’Hare to London Heathrow (World Traveller Plus)
- Wait. My Bag is Re-Flighted???
Part Two Onto Business
- Part Two – The Business
- British Airways Galleries South Lounge
- BA962 London Heathrow to Hamburg – Club Europe
- IBIS Budget St Pauli
- Crystal Cabin Awards Roundup
- Aircraft Interiors Expo – What you might have missed
- Back to Hamburg Airport, Hamburg Airport Lounge
- BA967 Hamburg Airport to London Heathrow – Club Europe
- Not going home in a hurry
- Compensation Fun, Games and Paperwork
- Life is in many parts
Editor’s note: Welcome back again dear reader to another compound trip. I’m going to try something different this time – splitting out the transatlantic “pleasure” trip, and the very much “business” side. Hence the very long chapter list to start with – but it will get shorter during the segments.
But apart from that difference, welcome to some more of the same that you’ve come to expect on Economy Class and Beyond trip report. I’ll be taking a close look at the passenger experience in-depth on American Airlines and British Airways in the long haul department, whilst dealing with British Airways short-haul business class and seeing if Club Europe is taking the steps to be competitive again.
And I’ll be the first to say that this trip descended into farce faster than you can say “trip report” or “Brexit Negotiations”.
Whilst I am using Grammarly a lot more than I should (dyslexia is a pig), my usual detractors who moan about my spelling and grammar can read this press release I wrote a few years ago in regards to this inconstancy.
Dividing a trip.
With my friends organising a get together in Chicago, I – of course – wanted to catch up and say hello – as well as have a break from the “Real world”. Which let’s face it – is never a bad thing to do.
However, it can be annoying when another event pushes itself next door to it.
As you can guess – the Passenger Experience Week in Hamburg is right next door to this event. Rather than cancel meeting my friends, there is only one thing to do – cram everything together and see what I can do with this.
As such, I’ve divided this trip report in two – the Pleasure part and Business part
Let’s look at the Pleasure side first.
Part One: The Pleasure
If there’s one thing to be thankful for, the low-cost carriers continue to make transatlantic fares a lot better value for all us out there – no matter what class of travel you’re going for.
Even in the expensive oneworld land, it is more than reasonable these days. Fares were slightly higher than they were in October 2018, with an economy ticket with luggage costing £375 (up from £353). However, knowing that I would have limited time to be asleep and do jet lag recovery, I instead opted for a seat that I could stand a chance to get some rest in.
Club World was pricing up at £953 for the return segment, whilst World Traveller Plus was coming in a £526. With the Chicago to London leg being a mere six hours on a good day, Club World wasn’t factoring in any scenario as good value. Therefore, I chose World Traveller Plus as a compromise solution to try to get rest in, as well as a bit more space
In addition, the Chicago-London leg is a handy 90 Tier Points (vs the standard 30 you get in cheap economy class).
At £526, the hammer went down, and all the Advance Passenger Information went in.
With that done, it was time to select seats. I went for my usual of 9H on American Airlines (because I learned my lesson NOT to sit in the exit row on a Boeing 787), whilst on the BA flight, it would be 35K in World traveller plus. Yes, it’s in front of the toilets, but it is a window seat. And I don’t do aisle seats thank you, please.
In terms of hotels, it was a simple choice, to be honest. I need to maximise time, as well as save a few pennies. So, unsurprisingly, I’ve got a night at the Crowne Plaza (to knock another IHG goal off), and the rest of the time at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare.
Nothing stunningly different this time.
Finally, to round things off, I spent £42 on a return coach ticket. Because only idiots like me travel at 2 am in the morning and 8 pm at night long distance without heading to a hotel each way.
So, here’s the map for part 1 of the run.
Let’s enjoy the pleasure of travel… unless someone delays a flight or loses a bag…
Welcome to Economy Class and Beyond – Your no-nonsense guide to network news, honest reviews, with in-depth coverage, unique research as well as the humour and madness as I only know how to deliver.