American Airlines Premium International Flagship Service
Biz Class seat 4J
Now I really never do trip reports unless its a big trip like this one so here goes. After months of waiting for my trip to Italy the day finally came! I took the LIRR to the Air Train into JFK, no problems at all and arrived at T8 by 2Pm. I was flying in the forward cabin so I proceeded to the First Class/Business Class check in area which is nicely walled off with leather seating and plants for AA’s premium customers.
Like always there is very little wait to check in and I proceeded directly to the counter. The check in process was very quick and friendly. The agent wished me a safe and enjoyable vacation and off I went to security. The wait time at the premium security line was very short and I was through in 2 mins tops.
Since I was on a premium ticket I had access to the Admirals club and proceeded directly to the club. When I entered and checked in with the CSR at the desk she gave me two free coupons for drinks which I ensured I put to good use. I BS’d around the club a bit, had two vodka cranberry, some fruit, and updated my Facebook status for last time until I returned home.
About 45 mins before departure I preceded to my gate. Our plane was there for sometime, ship 375. I grabbed a quick Starbucks and waited for boarding. We were delayed 20 mins for connecting passengers which wasn’t a big deal. They did the normal preboarding announcements and then proceeded to call the Biz class cabin. I was the first to board. Upon boarding I was greeted by two very friendly FA’s who took my bag, escorted me to my seat and asked if I’d like a predepartrue drink, I had a glass of champagne.
While I was waiting for push back I explored the seat which was very comfortable and well designed. During this time the FA’s also passed out our dinner menu and wine list, they also refilled our glasses. The forward cabin was rather empty; each passenger had their own row, so I moved from the aisle to the window.
We pushed back and taxied out to runway 4L and were only 6 inline for take off. The line moved very quickly and we took position and then the off we went. It was a decently long roll. It really was at this point I was excited for my vacation.
About 5 minutes into flight the FA’s got up and began their work in the gallery. The forward cabin was being worked by 4 FA’s for about 8 passengers so the service through the flight was very attentive, our glasses never ran dry. The FA’s did the normal forward cabin routine, Bose headsets, media players, drink orders, etc.
After the first round of drinks in flight the FA’s came around served us hot nuts and a seasoned cheese which was very good. It was at this point they took our dinner orders and suggested what wine would work with our choices. For dinner we had the follow selections, Roasted Lamb, Beef Fillet, Grilled Salmon, and a Pasta dish.
I selected the Roasted Lamb. For an appetizer we were served a Salmon tar tar and prawns which surprisingly was very fresh. After the appetizer salad was served and then finally the main course. A bit after dinner AA served the hot fudge sundaes along with chocolates. A selection of after dinner drinks and coffee also offered.
At this point I was ready to get some sleep and took my amenity kit, brushed up a bit in the bathroom, turned the seat into the bed position and feel asleep. The next thing I knew I was being woken by the FA informing me they’d be serving breakfast. I asked to be notified so I wasn’t bothered she was waking me up. I couldn’t believe how well I sleep and how great I felt. AA’s NG Business class seats really are well done.
Breakfast was a selection of cereal, bread, fruit, and yogurt. It was very good and I’m happy I ate it as lunch in Rome wouldn’t be for a few hours. We began our decent over the Island of Elba and quickly made our way into FCO and to our gate. Overall the flight was simply outstanding and I’d be so bold to rank it the best flight I’ve ever had.
Y class Seat 14J
This was my first time on BA so I’m always excited to fly a new airline and it was also a BA 767 which I’m fond of. On arrival to FCO I was rather tired from the last 15 days running around Italy so I wanted a smooth easy check in. Being Elite with One World I used the Biz class check in and skipped the long Y class line. I gave my passport to the BA agent; he proceeded to ask me for my ticket. I said it was an E ticket. He said it wasn’t…well we went back and forth a bit until I said “Instead of telling me my ticket isn’t an E ticket when it is get on the phone and get someone to figure out why you can’t bring it up in the computer.” So he finally called a Supervisor who figured it out and finished my check in. I’m not sure if it was his fault or something with the computer systems but I expected better from BA.
After that I headed to customs which was joke…they took my passport stamped it and off I went. No questions NOTHING. It was the same way entering Italy as well, LOL. I BS’d around FCO a bit and picked up a Nike Duffle Bag to empty the contents of my two shopping bags full of Italian Loot I bought the last two weeks. It was a wise purchase and I needed to blow my last 40 Euro anyway.
I headed to the gate and in about 45 mins we started boarding. The plane was parked at a hard stand so we took buses to the plane. I always think it’s cool to board a heavy jet on the ramp, not sure why, but its cool. Being I was on the first bus I was able to secure overhead space which was gone pretty quickly. I was rather impressed with BA’s Y cabin and the seats on their 767. I was able to cross my legs and easily stretch out so I was very happy. We sat for a bit of time waiting for the rest of the buses to bring passengers to the plane so I just browsed through BA’s magazines.
After we were loaded up the Capt got on and man this guy was the classic Brit, it was awesome. We didn’t have a wait for take off and quickly got to the active. Being the engines on this 76 are the similar as the 75 I always wondered if they’d use more runway to take off, I was wrong. We rocketed off the ground to the groan of those lovely RR power plants!
Once we reached cruise the FA’s began a very full on beverage and lunch service. They served us sandwich for lunch, I had the Chicken and Ham along with a biscuit. For a sandwich it was rather good. However the cans of Coke they give you are the smallest cans I’ve ever seen! I asked for three of them, LOL
After lunch I proceeded to throw on my iPod and fall asleep to some music. About two hours later we begun out decent into LHR and had a really bumpy decent. After touching down we promptly arrived at T5. I was off the plane rather fast since they used 2L vs. 1L for the jet ramp.
From what I saw of T5 its nice…not much to report being I had to go to T3 and you’re basically are in lonely hall way until you come to the shuttle bus area. I hopped on the bus to T3 which runs around the ramp. Upon arriving at T3 I headed to the security area and was screened and then preceded to the AA check in counter. The AA reps were very fast and directed me to the Admirals Club since I was in the Biz cabin to JFK.
I had a four hour layover and I really wasn’t in the mood to explore T3…its not very nice and you can’t see all too much of the outside. So upon arriving at the Admirals Club I grabbed some snacks and drinks, sat myself down near a window and admired the Iran Air 742 parked between two AA 777s. I thought it rather ironic that an Iran Air plane was parked between two US flagged planes. During my time in the club I watched some TV, read a bit, and took a nap.
About an hour before departure the Admirals Club rep told me my gate and I walked over 45 mins before departure.
American Airlines Premium International Flagship Service
Biz Class seat 10J
Upon arriving at the gate I checked and sat down and waited for boarding. The gate area was rather ugly and much worn. My friend from my tour was on my same flight but arrived a bit later into LHR then I did. So we meet up chatted a bit. AA started boarding both F class and Biz class at the same time so I proceeded to board.
Again we were greeted by the FA’s at 2L and directed to our seats and offered a predeparture drink. I had a Diet Coke, after 15 days of drinking non stop I was just about done with Wine and what not. The NGB seats on the 777 are similar to that of the 767 but with a couple minor upgrades which were nice. The TV is built in, both arm rests go down, there’s more storage space, and the privacy divider doesn’t have to be raised.
After boarding was completed they closed up the bird rather quickly, it was a light load and biz class was empty, once again each of us had our own row which was nice. Push back and the taxi to the active was rather speedy and we were only 2nd in line for take off. As soon as we got up we proceeded to head east vs. Northwest. Later the Capt said there were storms to the Northwest which caused our diversion east.
As soon as the cabin service started we were offered drinks…Diet Coke for me again, lol Hot nuts were also served and along with hot towels. The FA’s also passed out the Bose headsets and I proceeded to watch The Office. After sometime in flight the FAs took our dinner orders. This time I had the beef, for the last 15 days it was pasta pasta pasta so beef sounded really good to me.
The meal was four courses starting with an appetizer of seasoned cherry tomatoes, followed by salad and then the main course. A bit after dinner desert was served, Chocolate ice cream and then a selection of chocolates. By this time I watched all the episodes of The Office and decided to watch the latest Indiana Jones Movie…I promptly turned it off during the sword fight in the jungle. I decided a nap was more entertaining then the movie so I took a nice three hour nap.
I woke up West of Greenland and invited my friend who was in coach up to chat a bit about the trip. When the snack service came he returned to coach and I had the UNO’s Pizza. It was pretty good and certainly very filling.
We began our decent just south of Boston and proceeded to head to the North Folk of Long Island, here we were put in a holding pattern and circled for 20 mins. After being released we shot down to the south shore of Long Island allowing me to clearly see my town and even where my street was which was pretty cool. Soon after that the gear was down and we headed to 31R for a smooth landing and the end of my 15 day adventure across Italy!