Review: American Airlines Business Class, Daytime Flight ORD-LHR

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Earlier in the week, I posted about daytime flight options to Europe, and how it’s possible to fly from the US in time to arrive to London by late evening.

For this flight to London, I decided to depart on AA 90, leaving Chicago at 8:45a and arriving into London at 10:45. I’ll speak on why I believe this is the better way to go to avoid jet leg in a bit.

Boarding commenced at 8:05am, and began right on time without delay. Boarding was announced for “First Class” even though there was only a Business Class cabin on this 767.

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Onboard, the seating configuration is in a 2x2x2 pattern, with the older angled-flat seats. Personally, I’m a fan of these seats since I like the “cradle” position when watching movies, or, even for napping.

The cabin crew for this flight were absolutely phenomenal, and the purser was as “chipper” as could be, introducing herself to each of the Business Class passengers. You could tell that the flight attendants on this trip were experienced and of the “old school” mentality.

Boarding was complete fairly quickly due to their being a light load on this trip, and the door was closed promptly.

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At each seat was the menu for the flight:

Interestingly, the flight attendants noted that this was a brand new menu and new breakfast options were being trailed. I had pre-ordered the bread pudding, and for the end of flight snack, asked for the lobster mac and cheese.

This time is as good as any to mention upgrade chances for this particular flight. Because it is a daytime flight, loads are traditionally lower than the red-eye. Consistently, I’ve seen “C7” on ExpertFlyer, though you may not see the seats open until several days prior. If you’ve got a systemwide upgrade to burn, or want to use miles, this is a pretty safe route to go with since I’d consider the chances of getting upgraded pretty high.

Prior to service, the traditional inflight entertainment tablets were delivered, as well as the Bose Quiet Comfort headphones.

After take-off, beverage service began using the trolley. I asked for some apple juice and hot tea. Then, meal service began with the trays being brought individually from the galley, which I thought was a nice touch. I chose the yogurt parfait as the starter, with some optional granola sprinkled on at my seat. Boy was it good! I really wished they served this as an option in domestic First. To add to this, an offering of bagels, muffins or cinnamon buns was served, and I of course chose the most caloric option… Ha. Following the starter, the bread pudding was served which was phenomenal. Now, I have low expectations when it comes to airplane food, but this dish was really terrific, and almost should have been served as a dessert instead of a breakfast (but who cares!). Mid-flight, a cheese and cracker dish was delivered, followed by the lobster mac and cheese prior to arrival, which was quite tasty, and had multiple chunks of lobster, so there was no shortage of the expensive stuff!

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Overall, a really good flight, with really attentive service.

My Thoughts on a Daytime Flight

We arrived into Heathrow at around 10:30p, about 15 minutes ahead of schedule, though encountered major delays in immigration, causing me to not get to my hotel, the Andaz Liverpool Street until around 12:30am. That said, I really liked the timing on this flight, though understand it isn’t good for folks with connections. That said, even with a connection the next morning, I think it breaks up the jet lag considerably, and from a personal standpoint, I was about 50% less “lagged” than having taken a red-eye flight. This is now my preferred method of getting across the pond, and I’ll be excited when they update the aircraft to something newer, too. 🙂

 

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Comments

  1. Jason says

    I have booked this flight for september and currently there is no award availability in the business cabin despite have zero booked seats. When, in your experience, do they begin to release the seat for upgrade or milage purchase?

  2. Graydon says

    Not a bad option but a bit of a jump for me from Florida. Looking for options now that VS awards on DL jumped the shark. Curious about immigration queue does AA provide cards for the fast track line for immigration like VS does? It’s a huge time saver. I bet it cut 45 minutes off our last trip and that equally more time in arrival lounge.

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