British Airways will be flying its A350 plane this summer (July), which we will review soon after launch, but the question that many frequent flyers are asking is ‘which routes will this new plane be flying’?
Bear in mind that this plane will feature a new Club World or Business Class but no First Class. Yep, this plane will feature the brand new Club World seat which is why you want to be on this plane rather than any other plane in the BA Fleet if you are flying in Club!
The New Club World Seat
According to British Airways, their highly-anticipated new Business Class seat, the ‘Club Suite’ will arrive on the first of its A350 aircraft in July.
They say: “The airline’s sophisticated and newly-branded ‘Club Suite’ offers direct-aisle access, a suite door for greater privacy and luxurious flat-bed seats in a 1-2-1 configuration. Boasting 40 percent more storage, including a vanity unit and mirror, WiFi, enviable 18.5-inch inflight entertainment screens, high definition gate-to-gate programming, and PC / USB power”
The fact that there is direct aisle access is a game-changer for British Airways, who previously offered a rather dated Club World seat that was thin, lacking in storage, and lacked privacy and crucially, aisle access. You can see more of my current British Airways flat bed Business Class or Club World flight reviews below. Bear in mind these are of the old product that will remain in circulation for a while to come.
In this trip report, I review my flight on British Airways A380 in Business Class, HKG To LHR. In the middle of January, I had to go to London for a business trip. For this trip, due to scheduling, I… Read More.
On April 10th 2016, I flew First Class On The British Airways Dreamliner B787-9 from London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR) to Muscat International Airport (MCT) in Oman. The BA flight from London to Muscat is not a direct one, as the… Read More.
In this trip report, I review my flight on British Airways in Business Class or Club World on the Upper Deck of a Boeing 747 Jumbo plane. In the middle of May, I decided to switch up my usual direct… Read More.
In May 2016, I flew Business Class, or Club World, in a British Airways Boeing 777-300ER (B77W) from Tokyo’s Haneda Airport (HND) in Japan to London Heathrow. British Airways has 58 Boeing 777 planes in its fleet, most being older… Read More.
On March 14th 2015, I flew Business Class in an Airbus A380 of British Airways (BA) from London Heathrow (LHR) to Los Angeles (LAX). The world’s largest passenger aircraft entered into service for BA last year and is currently flying… Read More.
In this trip report I review Club World, British Airway’s Business Class, on the Dreamliner B787-9. If you want to experience the Dreamliner, BA currently routes its B787-9 to Abu Dhabi, Austin, Boston, Calgary, Delhi, Dubai, Houston, Jeddah, Kuala Lumpur,… Read More.
In this trip report I review Club World, British Airway’s Business Class, on an Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner from Calgary (YYC) to London Heathrow (LHR). You can also read my outward review on the British Airways A380 from London Heathrow (LHR)… Read More.
In this trip report I review Club World, British Airway’s Business Class, on an A380 from London Heathrow (LHR) to Vancouver (YVR) which I flew in September 2016. The Airbus A380 is the world’s largest commercial passenger aircraft and is… Read More.
In this trip report I review British Airway’s World Traveller Plus, also known as Premium Economy, on their new Boeing 787-900 Dreamliner on my trip from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to London. This product was newly launched a few months before,… Read More.
In this trip report, I review short haul Club Europe or Business Class on my flight within Europe on an Airbus A320 from London Heathrow to Nice. British Airways offers a fairly consistent Business Class offering throughout Europe which means… Read More.
How’s The Aeroplane?
They say “The A350 aircraft itself will also promote a feeling of well-being, space, and calm due to its reduced noise levels, high ceilings and ambient lighting which is intended to compliment the time of day and outside light. Customers will leave their flight feeling rested thanks to higher levels of humidity and refreshed air as the cabin pressure is equivalent to an altitude of just 6,000 feet. There are also environmental benefits to flying on the state-of-the-art A350 as 25 percent lower fuel burn significantly reduces CO2 emissions.”
“As well as a new 56-seat Club World cabin, the three-cabin A350 will feature the latest World Traveller Plus cabin (56 seats) with new furnishings including a plush new pillow and warm quilt, new amenity kits and enhanced service and an improved dining experience. The World Traveller (economy) cabin offers 219 seats. Customers will also benefit from high-speed WiFi, allowing travelers to browse the internet on their personal electronic devices.”
Note, there is no First on this plane, but First looks to be less necessary as the new seat is such a game-changer for British Airways, and such a leap from the current Business Class, dare I say it, bringing it close to the British Airways First Class product.
The First A350 Flights
During phase one, the first A350 aircraft will start some short-haul flying between London and Madrid to allow the airline’s teams to perfect their customer service delivery and familiarise cabin crew with the aircraft layout.
In phase two, from October 1, 2019, the aircraft will begin long-haul flying. During this period another three A350 aircraft will join the British Airways fleet and two Boeing 777 aircraft will also be retrofitted with the new cabin.
At the start of 2020 phase, three will begin which will see British Airways rolling out its Club Suite on further long-haul aircraft across the network. This investment program is costing British Airways £6.5 billion but is long overdue.
Álex Cruz, BA’s Chief Exec said “Each new suite has direct aisle access and comes with a personal door – design features which were incorporated as a direct result of the feedback we’ve had from our customers. We’ve worked hard to ensure every aspect of the Club World experience from the lounges we’ve refreshed, to the new gourmet menus from Do&Co on flights from Heathrow, and the luxurious bedding we’ve introduced from The White Company exudes the very British style and quality customers expect from us.’
“At British Airways we have one of Europe’s largest long-haul fleets and most far-reaching global networks, so it will take some time to make the cabin available to everybody. We hope that as more customers have the chance to experience it, they’ll enjoy traveling in it as much as we’ve enjoyed designing it.”
There will also be changes to its First, World Traveller Plus and World Traveller cabins, delivering new restaurant-style catering from Do&Co, rolling out industry-leading Wi-Fi on board and opening new lounges across the world. New routes being launched this year include Osaka, Pittsburgh, and Charleston.
Worth knowing: It is standard practice for aircraft manufacturers to advise an airline 30-days in advance of the specific delivery date of a new aircraft so British Airways will announce the date the A350 will join its fleet in June.
The current ‘selling from’ date for A350 long-haul flights is October 1 and over the next five years, British Airways will take delivery of 72 new aircraft, including four new types: The Airbus A350-1000, Boeing 787-10 for the long-haul as well as A320 and A321 Neo aircraft for short-haul.
So Where Do I Need To Fly To Try It?
We know that this plane will start with European familiarisation flights to and from Madrid and BA will then launch these planes on longer-haul, rumours suggest that this might be on transatlantic routes. This means that if you book Club Europe to Madrid, you might just snag yourself a brand new BA lie-flat seat… what a nice way of experiencing this new plane.
If the launch plan follows that of the A380, it is likely to be placed on routes with competition, so that it differentiates itself as a newer better offering. By this reckoning, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Newark New York, and Hong Kong may be possible routes for this plane. Other routes suggested by the rumor mill include Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Miami.
What Will The Next Plane Be Which Features The New Club World?
Following the A350 flights, BA will retrofit to some of its B777-200s, so these will be the next planes to receive BA’s new Business Class.
Wherever this A350 flies, this is THE BA plane to try to fly on, and you need to be booking into one of those brand new Club World seats!
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