10 Airlines I Still Want To Review In 2019

Filed Under: Travel

Unfortunately over the past several months I haven’t been able to review as many new airlines as I would ordinarily like to, and that’s largely because I’ve been prioritizing spending time with my mom over flying. While I have no regrets about that, I do want to set a goal for the remainder of the year, given that we have just over two months remaining.

Before the end of the year I want to review at least 10 useful first & business class products with points. Some of these are products I’m embarrassed not to have tried yet, but like I said, I’m setting a goal here and hope to follow through with it. I figure by putting it out there I’ll feel the pressure to try each of these.

So, in no particular order, here are the 10 airlines I hope to fly before the end of the year (I’ve already booked the first four):

Turkish 787-9 Business Class

I love Turkish Airlines business class to begin with, but the airline recently took delivery of their first 787-9 featuring an all new business class product. This should be a new era for Turkish Airlines, and I’m very excited to see what the product is like.

Tiffany and I are soon headed to Romania, and we’ll fly Turkish in one direction, between Atlanta and Istanbul.

Virgin Atlantic A350-1000 Upper Class

Virgin Atlantic recently took delivery of their first A350-1000, featuring an all new Upper Class. I’ve long enjoyed Virgin Atlantic’s soft product, though I’m curious to see what their new hard product is like, as it’s essentially a modified herringbone and reverse herringbone product.

We’ll fly this on our upcoming trip to Romania, between New York and London.

Air France A350-900 Business Class

Air France recently took delivery of their first A350-900. While I like the A350 in general, what makes this plane unique is that it features a new business class product for the airline, with the same seats you’ll find in United Polaris.

I booked this for just 32,000 Flying Blue miles one-way between Toronto and Paris using a recent Promo Award sale from the airline.

La Compagnie A321neo Business Class

The last time I flew La Compagnie was back when the airline started service about five years ago. The airline now has new A321neos featuring fully flat business class seats, and I’m curious to see how the product is nowadays. I managed to book a one-way ticket for under $700 using their recent fare sale.

British Airways A350-1000 Club Suite

One of the two most surprising new business class products of the year has to be British Airways’ new Club Suites, which debuted on their newly delivered A350-1000s. To fly British Airways business class with a solid hard product is really exciting.

The airline is flying the A350 from London to Dubai and Toronto, so I look forward to trying this with miles. They seem to be opening up a fair bit of space last minute.

ANA 777-300ER New Business Class

In addition to British Airways’ Club Suites, I’d say the other most surprising new product is ANA’s new 777-300ER business class, given that it seemingly came out of left field. The airline only released info about this new product a few weeks before it entered service.

ANA suddenly introduced business class seats with doors, and based on what I’ve heard this is among the best business class products out there. Currently the airline flies planes with these seats between London and Tokyo Haneda, and it’s expected that it will also be available to New York and Frankfurt as of this winter.

There seems to occasionally be some last minute business class award availability, so that’s my plan for booking this.

Hainan 787-9 New Business Class

I’ve flown Hainan’s 787 business class before, though only their old product in a 2-2-2 configuration. In the meantime the airline has 787s with reverse herringbone seats, which represents a great improvement. This is also a great use of Alaska miles, as you can redeem just 50,000 miles for one-way business class between the US and China.

Brussels Airlines A330 Business Class

I reviewed Brussels Airlines many years ago, but the airline has a new A330 business class in the meantime. This seems to be available on their route between New York and Brussels, and they at least sometimes have award availability in the westbound direction. So this seems like an easy enough way to cross the Atlantic.

TAP Air Portugal A330-900neo Business Class

TAP Air Portugal has new A330-900neos, featuring new business class seats with direct aisle access. I’ve flown TAP’s A330-300 and A321LR business class, so I do wonder how their A330-900neo business class stacks up.

I could either redeem miles for this, or book a cheap business class fare originating in Europe.

American 777-300ER First Class

I flew American’s 777-300ER first class several years ago, but I feel like it’s time to see how the product is nowadays. I’d like to fly them from Dallas to Hong Kong for a few reasons:

  • I’d like to review the Flagship Lounge and Flagship First Dining at DFW, since those are the only Flagship facilities I haven’t reviewed
  • I’ve heard some pretty bad things about service on American’s Dallas to Hong Kong flight, and I want to experience it firsthand

I’m still figuring out how best to book it, though.

Bottom Line

As you can see above, I’ve booked four of the above 10 products, so over the coming weeks hope to book the remaining ones, so that I can review all these airlines before the end of the year.

If anyone has any other special requests or would like to swap out any of the above, please let me know. As much as I’d love to review Air Peace, Air Tanzania, etc., I’m going to put that off for now, because I’m focused on reviewing the most useful airlines, rather than airlines I find to be exciting/exotic.

Comments
  1. I’d love to see a review of Egyptair’s new 787 seats! It’s such an easy ticket to book using United miles.

  2. Garuda new A330-900 business from AMS to Indonesia. Lot of budget cuts at GA lately and wanna see how the product has held up.

  3. Really glad your Mom is doing better, aggressive but love to hear your plans for the rest of the year! Good luck and best wishes to your family!

  4. @Lucky

    For AA First book HKG-MEX/CUN in Biz and use one of your SWU’s.
    You can even route HKG-DFW-MIA-MEX and just jump off in MIA.
    Select days through the end of the year are pricing at $1675 for the one way.

  5. The title is a bit off…you’ve already reviewed all of those airlines 😉

    Though I guess it’s a better title than “9 New Airline Products and 1 Older One I’d Like to Review in 2019″…

  6. You should try air mauritius a350, there’s a couple reviews out there but would love to se wit from your perspective

  7. Many don’t know but you can also book a mixed cabin award with ANA using Virgin Atlantic miles. This way you could fly ANA’s new Biz and new F in one trip. They will charge 50% of both cabin values, so for NY it would be 47.5k for biz plus 60k in F (total of 107.5k), if you are able to find the availability.

  8. “I’ve heard some pretty bad things about service on American’s Dallas to Hong Kong flight, and I want to experience it firsthand”
    LMAO

  9. Just buy a ticket to try Hainan’s 787-9. It makes no sense to redeem 50k AS miles and pay huge taxes & fees when you can buy a $1,500 ticket and earn 50k miles instead. I wrote about it earlier this month…

  10. I can vouch for service on AA’s DFW to HKG not being so good. Also, the Flagship Lounge at DFW is beautiful! It’s a bit more understated in terms of decor compared to the JFK lounge but still looks really good.

  11. The new Club Suite ist just great. At least, I think so. Because of bad weather and detour I spent almost 10 hours in the seat and loved it. Premium Eco is much better as well. Looking forward to fly Club Suite again.

  12. I appreciate this! Also, considering you’re an out and proud member of the LGBTQ community, Air Tanzania should probably be the last on your list…

  13. I’ve flown AA first class international out of DFW to HKG recently and it was great. And although I’ve been to only three Flagship Lounges (JFK, ORD, DFW), DFW was definitely the best of those. FYI, the PHL Flagship Lounge construction started on October 1st and is scheduled to be completed in nine months to open in July 2020.

  14. You can try to book the AA F using EY miles. Often times they just charge the J price as the award chart lists J/F and then a higher price for Premium (ie 3class F) but often times the agents don’t realize that and charge the lower rate.

  15. My wife and I backtracked to DFW from PHX to experience AA’s 777-300ER from DFW to HKG. The Flagship First dining was enjoyable (not CX, The Wing or Pier First nice), but enjoyable nonetheless. Not gonna lie, the on-board service in First needs work. The FA’s seems like they’re just going through the motions. It’s nothing to write home about.

  16. What about Emirates new 777 business class? You reviewed the A380 business class and the old 777 angled flat but not the new lie flat. I would love to see the 777-200LR on the FLL-DXB route to see how spacious the 2-2-2 actually is.

  17. Hey Lucky, don’t be too shocked at my recommendation to add Air China Business to your list for 2020!

    Just flew two legs over the weekend and they have REALLY upped their game big time! Flew the A350-800 (SIN-PEK) and their 747-800 (PEK-JFK) – both superb hard product, amazing food (best beef noodle soup on or off the ground, filet main and so on), modern cabin designs, proper duvets, entertainment system, etc, etc. Beijing lounge weak, but then again all lounges at Capital airport are very weak usually sharing, etc.

  18. Singapore Airlines 787-10 business class what happened weren’t you supposed to review that and didn’t you want to

  19. How about SCAT. Used to be one of the worlds worst rated airlines. Flies around Kazakhstan. They have some Boeing 300 series and other ancient aircraft. Recently watched a great You tube video on someone who took a flight. They previously were not allowed to fly to other countries due to safety issues. That ban has since been lifted.

  20. @Lucky, I say focus even more on your mom if you can…..the flight reviews can wait.

    I hope she is doing well and wish her and all your family the best and strength in what must be a stressful time for all of you.

  21. Hi Ben, looking forward to the reviews especially Turkish as I am flying the same route in a couple of months. Also, any chance of a fan meet & greet in Atlanta? 🙂

  22. Some of these sound so boring, but some im excited about, specifically Turkish and ANA’s new products.

    But how about some diversity?

    How about Azul’s business class from Campinas to FLL?? or LATAM’s new business class from Brazil to the US?

  23. “I’ve heard some pretty bad things about service on American’s Dallas to Hong Kong flight, and I want to experience it firsthand”

    Damn, Lucky. Taking one for the team haha.

  24. Dallas to Hong Kong in First on American Go in the winter when the flying time can potentially be 17:45 with head winds.

  25. @lucky – British Airways has some very reasonable fares in December from New York to Europe (from $1,200 roundtrip) in business class and could also help you re-qualify for AA status. While most fares feature their old business class or are on Aer Lingus, there are some days that route you via Toronto on the A350 or have you flying on their new 777 business class.

  26. @Ben

    I am surprised that the new F on ANA’s A380 is not on the list. It has been flying since May, and was also added to the new 77W cabin.

    There is now proper window views, the possibility to lower the partition on the middle seats fully, doors and features a 43″ IFE screen. Maybe more an evolution, but a lot of very positive steps taken to mitigate the draw backs of the old design.

  27. Flew the HKG-DFW in biz last year, service and food are both horrible, will not fly on AA’s international ever again. For Hainan, this year is not a good time to fly on them because of their ongoing financial situation which led to tremendous cost cut. If you have to fly, buying the tickets when there is a sale for under $2000 roung trip is way better value than using AS miles, especially considering the AS miles you could accumulate from the flight.

  28. Please do a review on the latest Delta One products (i.e., A330-900neo, refurbished 767-400). I’m curious about they compare to the suites in the A350 and refurbished 777s.

    I look forward to your ANA review. It looks really impressive. I love the cabin design. I’m curious what the first class product is like too.

    Request list:

    Delta A330-900neo: New Delta One Suite product in business class. Premium select.

    Delta 767-400: All new cabin. New Delta One seat.

    ANA 777-300ER: New F, New J

    JAL A350-900: Japan’s first big twin engine airbus

    Cathay A350 / 777: Are the weathering the storm? How is the product holding up?

    China Eastern A350-900: New suites

    Qantas A380: All new cabin.

  29. “I’ve heard some pretty bad things about service on American’s Dallas to Hong Kong flight, and I want to experience it firsthand”

    The Marquis de Sade would be right there with you, babe. #mAAsochism

  30. You’re “Lucky” to live near the world’s biggest airport, making it convenient to make all these trips.

    The Fake News are trying to downplay the size of MIA, but we know the truth.

    Touting the benefits of his Doral resort, Trump said today it is right next to Miami International Airport, “one of the biggest airports in the world — some say it’s the biggest.”

    “Facts” First (from the Commie News Network): Miami International is certainly not the biggest airport in the world.

    The airport was not in the top 20 for passenger traffic in 2018 or 2017. It ranked 15th in cargo traffic in 2018 and 14th in 2017, with less than half of the tonnage of cargo of top-ranked Hong Kong.

    Though world airports authorities do not release rankings of airports’ physical size, Miami International is not even close to the largest airport in the United States. Chicago’s O’Hare, for example, occupies about 7,200 acres, Miami International 3,230 acres.

  31. I just flew F on ANA’s New A380 HNL-NRT. Beautiful new lounge in HNL with direct boarding to the Upper Deck, Fantastic Suites that are far superior to the old ones, beautiful loungewear and amenity kit, Krug Champagne and excellent cuisine—and that superb understated Japanese service.

  32. Please try the all new SAS A350-900 business.
    My home airport is CPH and I hope they finally got something worth using.
    SAS economy is normally called the most overpriced low cost airline in the world

  33. How about Juneyao Airlines PVG-HEL. They are flying now 787 with good rates. I used their new 787 domestically between Shanghai and Shenzhen a couple of times in economy. Hard product is quite good with friendly service.

  34. I would strongly suggest that you just drop the TAP A330-900neo.
    I flew EWR-LIS earlier this month, and it is standard lousy TAP service. I had one of the solo-seats in Business Class, but heck….

  35. @Sam

    Similar to Qsuites, but not exactly the same. The seats are wider, the large counter but you can’t open any partition screens with the people seated facing you.

    @AB

    Yes, where is that MEA and Lebanon trip report?

  36. @Peter Frost – the A350-900 will debut on January 28th 2020.
    The aircraft is new, but the hard product onboard the CPH-ORD // CPH-PEK is all the same as on the A330/A340.

  37. I think it’s a great decision to prioritize spending time with your mom. Those business class products (especially the new ones) will be there next year, too. The seat is patient…

  38. Just did the Virgin NYC to London. Very private vs the old style and no more having to get out your seat to get into bed mode. Seat was very glitchy – just could not get it to a comfortable position without spending 15 mins of up/down/in/out etc. But comfortable for sleep, good PJ’s mattress pad and duvet. New amenities were very cool. The problem with the NYC to London is that it’s such a short flight… and breakfast is served 90 mins before landing vs say 60 mins which would be much more reasonable.

    Did think I’m starting to see more Delta cost-cutting measures creeping in – no more Bumble and Bumble in the Revivals Lounge, Club Lounge food was ok, but far from great, and the classic Delta move of not serving champagne, only sparking wine, before take-off to save on taxes.

    Plus everything about the Virgin app is now Delta, just red and purple instead… but as it’s one of the best flight apps out there, I’m all for it! One weird thing – why don’t they put the lounge location clearly on the app? Had to eventually go ask someone where it was, as the only alternative was literally scrolling through the whole of the terminal map using the app to try and find it.

  39. Ben, come along on Dec 28th on the DFW-HKG flight in First. Believe it or not, still available for 120K AA miles in FC.

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