BOOKED: Etihad & British Airways A380 First Class, And More!

BOOKED: Etihad & British Airways A380 First Class, And More!

91

I just booked my latest review trip, which I’m looking forward to taking in the near future. Actually, I’ve only booked one direction of travel, so I’m open to feedback as to what y’all would most like to read about in the other direction.

My Etihad & British Airways first class award

I managed to redeem 115,000 American AAdvantage miles for a first class award from Abu Dhabi to Chicago via London, all in A380 first class (yes, some Etihad partner awards are still possible). I’ll be flying Etihad’s A380 first class from Abu Dhabi to London, and British Airways’ A380 first class from London to Chicago.

Here’s my logic for booking this:

Etihad Airways A380 first class

Since I was flying the Abu Dhabi to London sector, I figured I might as well include a transatlantic segment in British Airways’ A380 first class:

  • I haven’t reviewed the Concorde Room, the Galleries First Lounge, and the Galleries Club Lounge, in a very long time
  • Since an Abu Dhabi to London award would have cost 62,500 AAdvantage miles, I’m only paying an incremental 52,500 AAdvantage miles for the transatlantic first class segment
  • This was actually pretty economical, since I don’t have to pay the UK APD (as I’m spending less than 24 hours in the UK), and the total surcharges are only $300 or so
  • I haven’t reviewed British Airways’ A380 first class in around a decade
British Airways A380 first class

I am trying to decide on two things when it comes to hotels:

  • If I’m spending a night at Heathrow and arriving at T4 and departing T5, where should I stay? Should I stay at the Hilton T4, the Sofitel T5, or is there another interesting option?
  • If I do spend a night in Abu Dhabi (probably just a quick transit), what review would you most like to read? I’m not usually a fan of W properties, but I’m oddly intrigued by the W Abu Dhabi Yas Island, and it’s also nice and close to the airport, so…

Deciding on an outbound itinerary

What I haven’t decided on is how exactly I should get to Abu Dhabi (or Dubai). I’m trying to keep this trip as short as possible, to minimize time away from home. Nonetheless, I want to have a bit of an adventure on the way out.

For whatever reason, I’m leaning toward flying Ethiopian Airlines to Dubai via Addis Ababa, to review two of the carrier’s long haul aircraft types. However, I’m actually planning to travel to Africa anyway in February, so I guess I could save the experience for then, even though Ethiopian doesn’t yet have availability for my dates.

Should I fly Ethiopian Airlines to Dubai?

I also haven’t reviewed Emirates’ A380 business class in about a decade, so I guess I could check that out. However, if I do this, I’d like to check out Emirates’ refreshed A380s, and those are only available on select routes, and I don’t see much award availability as of now for my dates.

It’s probably time to check out Emirates’ refreshed A380

As an alternative, I’d kind of love to fly Air India, though best I can tell, the airline doesn’t release much business class award space on its flights between the United States and India? I assume there’s nothing I’m missing there?

I guess I could also travel via the Far East, perhaps flying EVA Air to Taiwan, and comparing it to my recent Starlux experience. But I also feel like I’m getting a bit carried away. I’m open to ideas, so let me know what y’all would enjoy most!

Is it time for another trip on EVA Air?

Bottom line

I’m excited for my upcoming review trip, where I’ll definitely be flying on Etihad and British Airways in A380 first class, allowing me to check out the new Terminal A in Abu Dhabi, plus a variety of lounges. What I’m undecided on is what I should fly in the other direction, as I’m all over the place…

Any thoughts on what I should fly on the outbound?

Conversations (91)
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  1. Michael Guest

    so wheres the actual review?

  2. Bill Ferguson Guest

    I’m looking for confirmation that the Abu Dhabi transit hotel (formerly Aerotel) is closed. Its web presence was already terrible after unflagging as Aerotel. All I can tell now is that it’s not bookable in early January, and it’s probably closed until they figure something out with the new terminal. 12 hour overnight layover, and it seems silly to go off property. Premier Inn is fine, but its shuttle only runs hourly, so if I...

    I’m looking for confirmation that the Abu Dhabi transit hotel (formerly Aerotel) is closed. Its web presence was already terrible after unflagging as Aerotel. All I can tell now is that it’s not bookable in early January, and it’s probably closed until they figure something out with the new terminal. 12 hour overnight layover, and it seems silly to go off property. Premier Inn is fine, but its shuttle only runs hourly, so if I must take a taxi/rideshare, I’ll take it to the Andaz.

  3. wcpierce62 New Member

    Hilton Garden Inn in LHR T2 has great views from the higher guest rooms. The rooftop bar has amazing approach views during normal operations.

    1. wcpierce62 New Member

      Didn't see Jmccarron's comment saying the same thing better three days earlier. Sorry.

  4. CH Guest

    Just curious. As you are based in Miami why don't you fly home direct to Miami with BA rather than flying to Chicago. They use A380's on the Miami route.

  5. WTT Guest

    A review of these airlines, again??!!! I already know the conclusion:- You hate, BA. You love, EY. (You seem be running-out new content ideas.)

  6. Akpululu Guest

    Anybody else have their EY First changed to Business?

  7. Aaron Tan Guest

    Aim for Ethiopian, Air India etc. Give us something with a different flavour. Less Emirates please.

  8. jmccarron New Member

    "If I’m spending a night at Heathrow and arriving at T4 and departing T5, where should I stay? Should I stay at the Hilton T4, the Sofitel T5, or is there another interesting option?"

    Hands down the Hilton Garden Inn T2&3. Great runway view rooms and the most amazing runway view bar/restaurant on the top floor with a deck (you're between runways and have phenomenal view of the southern runways). You have to transit via...

    "If I’m spending a night at Heathrow and arriving at T4 and departing T5, where should I stay? Should I stay at the Hilton T4, the Sofitel T5, or is there another interesting option?"

    Hands down the Hilton Garden Inn T2&3. Great runway view rooms and the most amazing runway view bar/restaurant on the top floor with a deck (you're between runways and have phenomenal view of the southern runways). You have to transit via T2&3 to get to T5 from T4 anyway. Also, the staff is great, and the rooms are perfectly nice and much newer.

  9. tony Guest

    I would also vote for Kenya Airways JFK-Nairobi-Dubai

  10. David Guest

    Edition Abu Dhabi is the best hotel in town

  11. Karim Guest

    I would try using finnair from Chicago to Dxb or Doha and either taxi(award booking not elligible for f class limo) to auh or reviewing the short hop to doh/auh which should give you also access to first lounge in Doha. Plenty to review. Would be nice to get a review on new business in finnair and short hop on Qatar. I saw 3 finnair aircraft parked at gates in Doha last night so plenty...

    I would try using finnair from Chicago to Dxb or Doha and either taxi(award booking not elligible for f class limo) to auh or reviewing the short hop to doh/auh which should give you also access to first lounge in Doha. Plenty to review. Would be nice to get a review on new business in finnair and short hop on Qatar. I saw 3 finnair aircraft parked at gates in Doha last night so plenty of options. As for Auh hotel St Regis could be nice to review.
    On a personal not it would be good to know which airline has excellent premium class catering ex USA, especially ORD. So testing air France F class ex ORD or other gateway would be interesting. Could do ORD/CDG then on to AUH/DXB via muscat on Oman air to review Oman air.

  12. Albert Guest

    Is it possible to do A380 RTW (or at least from West Coast west to Chicago)?

  13. eponymous coward Guest

    Been a while since you’ve done TG F…

  14. Guy Guest

    The rooms at the T4 Hilton are feeling dated but in terms of staffing and breakfast I find the T4 Hilton to be the best of the on-premise hotels.

    The newest and arguably best rooms for a standard room is the Hilton Garden Inn Terminal 2. Since you have to change trains to get to T5 from T4 at T2 anyway you could also consider that. More basic hotel but best rooms and some rooms...

    The rooms at the T4 Hilton are feeling dated but in terms of staffing and breakfast I find the T4 Hilton to be the best of the on-premise hotels.

    The newest and arguably best rooms for a standard room is the Hilton Garden Inn Terminal 2. Since you have to change trains to get to T5 from T4 at T2 anyway you could also consider that. More basic hotel but best rooms and some rooms have great runway views. Also good bar on top floor.

    Hope to bump into you on the CCR one day - it was your site many years ago that got me to fly BA First for the first time.

    1. The nice Paul Guest

      Another vote for the T4 Hilton — the best of a fairly bog-standard bunch, but it’s completely predictable and I like that when I’m travelling.

      Though my preference is to stay in the terminal from which I’ll be departing so in your case I’d stay in the T5 Sofitel.

      Have you reviewed KLM’s new business class yet?

  15. tuotuo Gold

    Start your trip at NHL.ANA 380 to NRT.Then Emirates 380 to DXB.

  16. RKC Guest

    Not sure if you’ve flown them recently but what about Kenya Airways JFK-DXB via Nairobi? 787 and 737

  17. stuart Guest

    I mean it might not sound exciting but what about United's route from EWR to DXB which at least would make a quick trip

    1. Antwerpen Guest

      Matthew did a small review of this flight in August. Looks pretty UA J standard with some slight improvements in catering ex DXB.

  18. Creditcrunch Diamond

    Sofitel T5 is your best bet if you plan to arrive early to check out the lounges, T5B lounge has had a refurbishment recently and is a nice space and I don’t think you’ve reviewed.

  19. Rob Guest

    Why not to stay in newly opened Raffles? You liked the hotel in Warsaw - maybe worth to check it out in London? No need to stay at the airport unless it's a very short stay
    Are you planning to upgrade to Residence? I have seen special offer from Etihad

  20. Tim Guest

    Will you be flying on the new refurbished BA A380 ?

  21. CPDC10-30 Guest

    Hilton Heathrow T4 would be my choice over the Sofitel T5. Though it is an older hotel, the rooms are more modern and in better condition than the Sofitel. The restaurant at the Hilton is excellent, especially the breakfast selection.

    I will be very impressed if you go with the Premier Inn, it’s my usual choice as much cheaper and the rooms are still quite decent. Sometimes I’ve stayed there for less than £50. The...

    Hilton Heathrow T4 would be my choice over the Sofitel T5. Though it is an older hotel, the rooms are more modern and in better condition than the Sofitel. The restaurant at the Hilton is excellent, especially the breakfast selection.

    I will be very impressed if you go with the Premier Inn, it’s my usual choice as much cheaper and the rooms are still quite decent. Sometimes I’ve stayed there for less than £50. The main downside is there is no gym. I typically stay at the Premier Inn T4 and eat at the Hilton. The Premier Inn is down the same walkway as the Hilton ( as are the HI Express / Crowne Plaza).

  22. Mark R Guest

    I stayed at that W last summer on an Etihad First from DC to Lahore (mis)adventure. I got a generous upgrade despite being a mid-tier loyalty member. Interesting hotel in that the rates are normally fair except during most of the year but absolutely outrageous when there's a race. I was able to see the race track from my room. Unique hotel for sure, especially an up close view of the art installation at the reception desk.

  23. Peter Fox Guest

    I would seriously try to get the new Etihad service from CPH-AUH, and then may get to Copenhagen via one of your last trips on the SAS A350, as the six originally aircrafts are leaving by the hour (months), I believe there is only the CPH- (SFO-LAX-EWR) that has them in their schedule and of course the far East of Asia.

  24. Peter Fox Guest

    Please avoid the Sofitel. I was there last February during the BA-break down of all systems. The hotel was packed. They were asking for volunteer's to share rooms with strangers.

  25. Briggy Guest

    I know the Galleries lounges aren't exactly the best in the world, or even the best at Heathrow, but make sure you check out the T5B lounge. I was there this week; it was very quiet, very calm, and the food and service has gotten a lot better. I was really impressed.

  26. James Guest

    Id definitely stay at the sofitel in T5 just because its connected to the terminal. In terms of getting to dubai, maybe its time for another cathay pacific adventure as they just reopened the pier recently.

  27. Mick Guest

    Aweosme! Sounds like a sweet trip. I love the apartments and am hoping they return to syd.

    I flew EVA a bit over summer and loved the whole experience. Previously flew on the hello kitty plane from ord to tpe. Pretty fun ha!

  28. FoxtrotMikeLima Guest

    I've done this exact route. I bet you'll love it!

  29. Michael Guest

    Hmm what about:

    Air Senegal:
    Baltimore/New York - Dakar
    ASKY Airlines:
    Dakar - Lome
    Ethiopian:
    Lome - Dubai (via Addis)

    1. Jason Guest

      Air Senegal dropped Baltimore

  30. John H Guest

    Gosh, I hope you have a similar experience but flew BA a380 first to LAX and La Premiere AF back to CDG - I think BA came out ahead (apart from lounge in Paris), Concorde Lounge service other than toilet/showers fantastic if busy, and who doesn’t love to see “spotted dick” in a desert menu, always makes for an ordering smirk - no ground service of course but in flight super, unless hung up on...

    Gosh, I hope you have a similar experience but flew BA a380 first to LAX and La Premiere AF back to CDG - I think BA came out ahead (apart from lounge in Paris), Concorde Lounge service other than toilet/showers fantastic if busy, and who doesn’t love to see “spotted dick” in a desert menu, always makes for an ordering smirk - no ground service of course but in flight super, unless hung up on caviar. We literally had a Karen FA on AF, who should not have not been rostered but otherwise great (her rest relief Nicholas was more on point) - I was shocked BA even in running….it’s hit/miss, I know and we got lucky but, but kudos

  31. Dereck Guest

    Lucky,
    I can't wait to see the report on this trip. We had LHR-AUH booked in Jan, but messed up and booked the 777. We are headed to Male, and I went ahead and cancelled that leg, so I'm going to miss out on the EY 380

  32. Ben Holz Guest

    Not sure how useful it'd be, but it would definitely be pretty practical if you reviewed UX's 789 J seat (featuring reverse herringbone seats, unlike their 788s with the 2-2-2 config.) which they fly on MIA-MAD. From there you could either review EK J on the A380... OR take advantage of Royal Jordanian's solid fares (ca. 1000€) and review J on their narrowbodies via AMM to AUH/DXB (assuming you're willing to give them another shot...

    Not sure how useful it'd be, but it would definitely be pretty practical if you reviewed UX's 789 J seat (featuring reverse herringbone seats, unlike their 788s with the 2-2-2 config.) which they fly on MIA-MAD. From there you could either review EK J on the A380... OR take advantage of Royal Jordanian's solid fares (ca. 1000€) and review J on their narrowbodies via AMM to AUH/DXB (assuming you're willing to give them another shot after what happened on that eventful BKK-HKG flight ;)

  33. François Guest

    Myrtle Road is conveniently near T4, so stay at the Hilton and then walk over for some afternoon planespotting.

  34. hc Guest

    Hotels Id love to see you review:
    Emirates Palace Mandarin Oriental
    Rixos Marina
    Ritz Carlton Grand Canal
    Abu Dhabi Edition

  35. Keith Guest

    For potential LHR hotel, the true avgeek hotel is the Renaissance. It isn't particularly deluxe nor is it convenient to the terminals (shuttle required), but it has the most spectacular views. It's the only hotel where upon awaking at 3:00 a.m. and peeking out the window, a 747 may be landing directly outside the window (like the far side of a suburban parking lot).

  36. Henry Guest

    Ben, you can fly Air India business on the ex Delta 777 from BOM-JFK for like 100K Aeroplan miles and $100. Only one seat per flight is available though. Just tried it a month ago. It's improved over what it was, though still has some ways to go before it's actually competitive.

  37. DMoney Guest

    Earlier this year, we stayed at Conrad Etihad Towers and loved our stay. It’s a bit far from the airport compared to the W, but the overall stay was amazing. We had two rooms booked (one on FNC and another using cash which was offset by my wife’s Aspire $250 credit). I had gold status with Hilton and my wife had Diamond. They upgraded both our rooms to one with club lounge access and for...

    Earlier this year, we stayed at Conrad Etihad Towers and loved our stay. It’s a bit far from the airport compared to the W, but the overall stay was amazing. We had two rooms booked (one on FNC and another using cash which was offset by my wife’s Aspire $250 credit). I had gold status with Hilton and my wife had Diamond. They upgraded both our rooms to one with club lounge access and for breakfast in the morning, allowed all of us to use the special area meant for Diamond members only. They even had a special menu (apart from the buffet spread) for Diamond members that included scrambled eggs topped with Cavier! My mother in law enjoyed several servings of that dish! Also, staying there gives you access to their restaurant on the top floor of the towers, where you can just visit even if you aren’t dining there or if you don’t have reservations. The views from there were amazing!

    1. TimR Guest

      I agree. I was just there and the Conrad is one of my favorite city hotels

  38. Phillip Diamond

    Air India had quite a bit of availability out of YVR recently.

  39. Daniel from Finland Guest

    If you want to experience and review a super-underwhelming business class, fly Finnair from Helsinki to Dubai DXB. I don't think a western J class flight can get a lot worse than that.

  40. Euro Gold

    You wrote about Aerolineas Argentinas yesterday so that would be my vote, but then that leaves the question of how to get to the Middle East from Madrid or Rome (their 2 destinations in Europe). Otherwise if you want to fly via Asia, then Garuda Indonesia in J would get my vote as well- they fly to JED from CGK and then a hop to AUH/DXB on Saudia.

    Or if you want to go for...

    You wrote about Aerolineas Argentinas yesterday so that would be my vote, but then that leaves the question of how to get to the Middle East from Madrid or Rome (their 2 destinations in Europe). Otherwise if you want to fly via Asia, then Garuda Indonesia in J would get my vote as well- they fly to JED from CGK and then a hop to AUH/DXB on Saudia.

    Or if you want to go for the VERY unusual (and probably problematic because visa/transit issues?)... Air Algerie from YUL to DXB via ALG?

  41. Preacher Guest

    Stay overnight at the Andaz Capital Gate in AUH. It’s awesome, and a stay in the Executive Suite is a great use of Hyatt points. Just take a look at the hotel’s exterior—it’s an architectural marvel!

  42. Jordan Guest

    I vote for a review for Four Seasons or Rosewood Abu Dhabi. W Yas Island is high key cheesy and underwhelming.

    1. Jason Guest

      He has reviewed Rosewood Abu Dhabi before.

  43. Willem Guest

    Any way to fit in Air Senegal from JFK to Dakar? Air India awards have been tough for about a year now, but an ex-Delta aircraft review would be exciting

    1. Willem Guest

      Actually, for lounges you should try Air Canada paid business class or an Aeroplan Business Flex reward and review their Signature Suite in either Toronto or Vancouver, iirc it’s one of the few lounges you haven’t yet visited

  44. Bryan Guest

    I like to stay in a runway view room at the Renaissance Hotel on Bath Rd. Great views of LHR. Airplanes land right outside your window if using runway 27R. It’s not as as good if LHR is on east flow and the hotel is adequate but nothing great.

  45. Bob Guest

    Kinda lame if you dont explain how you managed to get EY F on an AA award...

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Bob -- Literally booked through aa.com and it confirmed. I wrote a post yesterday explaining how some space is phantom, but other space isn't.

  46. VT-CIE Diamond

    AI’s ex-Etihad 777-300ER flies mostly from EWR and LHR to Mumbai, and the ex-Delta 777-200LR from JFK to Mumbai, from where you can consider the Vistara A321neo to Dubai, as Vistara will cease to exist soon. Alternatively you can fly from SFO to Delhi or Mumbai and connect from there, but Vistara doesn’t fly from Delhi to Dubai — it focuses more on LHR/CDG/FRA on its 787-9s. Should be fun!

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ VT-CIE -- Would love to review AI F, but at the moment not seeing much award availability for the near future, even on flights where the cabin is mostly empty. Any workaround/hidden city ticketing trick that I'm missing?

    2. ian Guest

      SFO-DEL has a alot of F AI space.

  47. splane21 New Member

    A Vistara review would be cool

  48. splane21 New Member

    If you’re planning on flying into India on AI add Bengaluru to your trip (BLR) to checkout the new Terminal 2. Its comparable to Singapore Changi and new Doha terminal. https://www.architecturaldigest.in/story/bengalurus-kempegowda-international-airport-t2-is-a-terminal-in-a-garden/

  49. splane21 New Member

    I look up award availability to India a lot and it seems like AI and Ethiopian are usually the two airlines that have availability on UA Mileage plus at the Saver level (and maybe Aeroplan too)

  50. James Guest

    We like you too much to let you go all the way to London to stay at the airport Hilton. It’s a nothing-burger. Those smarter than I am will be able to suggest an option worth your time. Happy Thanksgiving Lucky!

  51. RichM Diamond

    If you have one night at Heathrow, don't stay at any of the airport hotels (all are boring and typical airport hotels). A 15 minute taxi ride will get you to some much nicer luxury country house hotels, such as the Fairmont Windsor Park, the De Vere Estate near Windsor, or the Langley, Buckinghamshire.

    1. Kredie Guest

      There is also a nice Four Seasons a little bit farther out.

    2. RichM Diamond

      That's over 30 miles from Heathrow though, down the M3, so maybe not practical for a 1-night layover.

  52. Patrick Guest

    What about JAL F to Tokyo and then Emirates F or J to Dubai?

    1. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Patrick -- Great idea, but I'm saving Japan Airlines first class for January, because I have a couple of speculative JFK-HND tickets, in hopes of getting the new A350 F.

    2. hanchicago Guest

      @ Lucky It is a 50-50 shot to fly in the new JAL A350-1000 First Class, given JL5 will fly only every other day at the beginning, right?

      I got a speculative booking in January also.

    3. NateNate Member

      Can I take some of the speculative bookings that don't work out?

    4. NomadDC New Member

      @Ben any chance you are reviewing the Park Hyatt Niseko?

  53. breathesrain Gold

    There might be more AI availability than you think if you're searching Aeroplan....they doesn't seem to be showing AI partner awards right now, even in economy. Found several seats on United and Lifemiles that were not on AP.

  54. Mike O. Guest

    As much as I would love a CX trip report, their Aria Suites are not due till the 2nd quarter of next year.

  55. seanp78 Member

    AUH - W Yas island is lovely but it’s in the middle of nowhere and quite dull. You will need to Uber everywhere. It’s great as a night before kinda place and I got upgraded to a huge suite both times. Give it a whirl. I think there are much newer choices and personally I would say closer to downtown AUH as the drive is still short anyway.
    Looking forward to AUH F lounge Terminal A Review! I'm passing through there Dec 19.

  56. R B Guest

    You have not reviewed KLM in a while...

  57. daftboy Guest

    At LHR suggest the Crowne Plaza/Holiday Inn complex at T4 (nice new construction) or the Hilton Garden Inn T2/3 (connected to T2 via the parking garage) - the latter has a great rooftop bar, including a terrace essentially between the runways, and would be the easier trip to T5 next morning (assuming you don’t stay at the Sofitel)

    1. Ian Snowley Guest

      I agree with DB - post Elizabeth Line opening, rail transfers between T4 and T5 are less frequent now! So Sofitel or T2/3 are easier! I’ve stayed at the Sofitel a few times and it’s perfectly pleasant with a nice but busy lounge! Hilton T4 is nice and updated but harder to transit, unless you book a car. HGI at T2 is fine, but nothing special!

  58. Antwerp Guest

    Personally I would be interested in a review of BeOnd to Maldives from MUC. It's intriguing and am curious how they stack up service wise. I am doing a lot of flights between Europe and the ME so I'm wondering if they could end up a disruptor.

    I'm surprised you didn't look for a cheap F fare to LHR on Etihad (Colombo has some attractive ones at around $3K) so you could do the...

    Personally I would be interested in a review of BeOnd to Maldives from MUC. It's intriguing and am curious how they stack up service wise. I am doing a lot of flights between Europe and the ME so I'm wondering if they could end up a disruptor.

    I'm surprised you didn't look for a cheap F fare to LHR on Etihad (Colombo has some attractive ones at around $3K) so you could do the paid upgrade to Residence and review what it's like now. While expensive it seems like a worthwhile investment for a first back review.

    Sofitel all the way at LHR. Especially if leaving out of T5. Even if not. Tried them all there and nothing compares.

    1. breathesrain Gold

      You can still get those cheap fares out of Columbo? That's good to know!

    2. Antwerp Guest

      Yep, just checked for January when I am there and they were showing on some days. On both of the connections to LHR in AUH.

    3. Lukas Diamond

      Lucky recently pointed out that from BKK and HKT you can travel o LHR for just ~$2500 one way in F.

    4. Antwerp Guest

      Even better. I'm eyeing these to see if I can do a buy up to The Residence. While not the same it's still on my av-geek bucket list.

  59. Hammer New Member

    If you’re flying Ethiopian and they have availability from IAD you can review the Capital One and United Polaris lounges there

  60. Steven Guest

    I actually think if you’re going to consider Emirates it would be good to see a write up on the EK 777s with true flat beds in biz. They fly from all US routes now and despite the 2-3-2, I think it’s a really comfortable seat that gets an unfair bad rap because of the configuration.

    1. Alasdair Jones Guest

      Have you flown the TAP Portugal refreshed business class Ben? Would be interested as I can't find your review if so

  61. JBar Guest

    By no means luxury but would be curious to see how Norse’s premium economy is! Another interesting TATL review could be Aer Lingus and TAP (I think you’ve done both before though).

  62. James K Guest

    I’ve long been curious about the Sofitel as an option and it would offer a lot of utility to you so stay there please!

  63. Tony Guest

    How about KLM? They have the new business class with doors on about half the 777-300ER fleet, easy to find with seat maps. Yeah its not 100% sure you won’t get swapped but its worth it for a review and award space should be plentiful. Then you’d have more options with air india from Europe.

  64. Jason Guest

    I second it- the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi. But haven’t you stayed there? The W is okay- it use to be the Viceroy when I lived there. How about the Four Seasons Abu Dhabi?

  65. Andy Guest

    We really enjoyed the Ritz Carlton Abu Dhabi on our honeymoon but when we saw it on our tour I couldn’t help wishing we’d chosen Emirates Palace. Would love a review of that.

    I’m constantly intrigued by Royal Air Maroc who seem to frequently have compelling cash prices in J I could credit to AA. Unsure if you’ve reviewed that recently.

    1. Andrew Guest

      I think you will be pleasantly surprised with Ethiopian airlines. Not at the level of the middle eastern airlines but much better than the US airlines if you’re on their flagship cloud nine 1-2-1. Anytime we’re in the UAE my wife always wants to go back to Al Maha, but I guess you’ve already reviewed that.

    2. Antwerp Guest

      I use RAM quite a bit on trips to and inside Morocco. The biggest issue is no reliability in which 787 you will get to the U.S. They can swap them out at will and there is a huge difference in the hard product. Also, the soft product is meh and the lounge is dismal in Casa. Lastly, prepare for a massive fight to get your miles credited to AA. Though it will show on...

      I use RAM quite a bit on trips to and inside Morocco. The biggest issue is no reliability in which 787 you will get to the U.S. They can swap them out at will and there is a huge difference in the hard product. Also, the soft product is meh and the lounge is dismal in Casa. Lastly, prepare for a massive fight to get your miles credited to AA. Though it will show on your boarding pass, you will never get them until spending two months fighting with AA to have them credited.

    3. Ben Schlappig OMAAT

      @ Andy -- Funny enough, I reviewed Emirates Palace the last time I reviewed The Residence on Etihad, as it was included with the ticket:
      https://onemileatatime.com/emirates-palace-abu-dhabi-review/

  66. Gary Guest

    I've just flown in from Miami on the 380 with BA in F - will be interested to hear your thoughts.

    It is not a great hotel but you can ride the POD from the business car park if you stay at the Thistle T5 - such fun!

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Aaron Tan Guest

Aim for Ethiopian, Air India etc. Give us something with a different flavour. Less Emirates please.

1
jmccarron New Member

"If I’m spending a night at Heathrow and arriving at T4 and departing T5, where should I stay? Should I stay at the Hilton T4, the Sofitel T5, or is there another interesting option?" Hands down the Hilton Garden Inn T2&3. Great runway view rooms and the most amazing runway view bar/restaurant on the top floor with a deck (you're between runways and have phenomenal view of the southern runways). You have to transit via T2&3 to get to T5 from T4 anyway. Also, the staff is great, and the rooms are perfectly nice and much newer.

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VT-CIE Diamond

AI’s ex-Etihad 777-300ER flies mostly from EWR and LHR to Mumbai, and the ex-Delta 777-200LR from JFK to Mumbai, from where you can consider the Vistara A321neo to Dubai, as Vistara will cease to exist soon. Alternatively you can fly from SFO to Delhi or Mumbai and connect from there, but Vistara doesn’t fly from Delhi to Dubai — it focuses more on LHR/CDG/FRA on its 787-9s. Should be fun!

1
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