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British Airways trying their luck

I've just received an e-mail from British Airways regarding my forthcoming flight to Mallorca in August that I fully suspect will not be taking place.

They're offering me an opportunity to upgrade to business class for the princely sum of £139 each. They are tempting me with the following:

  • Start your journey in the calm of our relaxing lounges*, away from the hubbub of the airport.
  • A greater baggage allowance means you can take 2 bags at 32kg each, as well as 2 pieces of hand baggage.
  • On board, sit back in a bespoke leather seat designed to maximise your personal space, and be first off the plane.
  • Dine on our gourmet foods and fine wines, including champagne.

Well, considering all airport lounges are currently closed and no sign of re-opening any time soon then lounge access isn't worth the money (plus we receive it anyway with our frequent flyer status).

Two 23kg suitcases are sufficient for our family of four so absolutely no requirement for two 32kg each!

Bespoke leather seat? The same leather seat that you get in economy albeit with the middle seat used as a table.

All food currently served on board is a packed lunch and is the same irrespective of what class of travel you're in.

Thanks for the offer BA but I think I'll pass on this occasion.

Posted by
2597 posts

I guess they know the worst passengers can do is say no, but some passengers probably accept, and that gets a little more money in the door.

Posted by
7485 posts

I suspect they are too busy with other things than to re-program ( or delete) the automated message that was/is set to go out to everyone in coach to try to sell an upgrade.

Posted by
4998 posts

Hmm ... we’d never gotten an offer to upgrade from World Traveller to Club World before, and under normal circumstances, £139 doesn’t seem waaay too bad a deal. But under normal circumstances, the upgrade cost would’ve been a lot more than £139.

That’s all assuming that flights would be happening this summer.

And the seats are bespoke?!?! I wasn’t aware that measurements and passenger specifications were taken prior to the flights, allowing for upholstery customizing prior to boarding. Sure, the seats have controls allowing motorized bolster adjustments, but the occupant is doing the adjusting.

August may be different, but at home, our restaurants aren’t currently providing inside dining, even with distancing space greater than an airliner provides. The offer you got, JC, sounds intriguing to consider, for a moment - temporary distraction from other things. But if you’re right that the flight won’t be taking place, they could’ve offered a chance to fly the plane, for no extra fee, and it wouldn’t have mattered. Still, it’s nice they’re thinking of your comfort 😊

Posted by
4368 posts

Hmm ... we’d never gotten an offer to upgrade from World Traveller to Club World before, and under normal circumstances, £139 doesn’t seem waaay too bad a deal. But under normal circumstances, the upgrade cost would’ve been a lot more than £139.

The upgrade cost is in line with the other upgrade offers we've had pre-pandemic. The flight is around two hours and Club Europe is a different product to Club World. Essentially it's the same seat as the rest of the plane, including pitch but the middle seat has a table incorporated into it so you don't have anyone sat right next to you.

In the old days of Club Europe before BA started trying to compete with the budget airlines there was a noticeable difference but these days it's comparable to what economy used to be like before it really went downhill. The long haul product is still good but for a two hour flight to Mallorca it's not worth the money, particularly as we paid inflated school holiday prices in the first place.

If you do want to consider upgrading your flight you don't need to wait to be offered. You can visit the 'Manage My Booking' area on the BA website and there is usually an option to upgrade your flight. Sometimes it will tell you what the cost is, other times it requires a call to an agent.

Posted by
2295 posts

The description of business class/Club Europe in this email is far removed from the reality that I have experienced on multiple flights. In September 2019, our "bespoke leather seats" were so uncomfortable that we asked to be moved - to seats that weren't much better.

Yup - you're right to pass on this offer.

Posted by
4368 posts

In September 2019, our "bespoke leather seats" were so uncomfortable that we asked to be moved - to seats that weren't much better.

That's because they're exactly the same seats throughout the entire aircraft. Gone are the days when business class seats were larger and more luxurious than economy ones (long haul flights excluded).

My most comfortable recent intra Europe flight was with Montenegro Airlines. They only have four aircraft, three Embraer 195's and one Fokker 100. The aircraft are relatively old and the seating hasn't been updated in line with most of the other major carriers which results in large, comfortable leather seats with plenty of legroom. It was the first time I can remember in economy where my knees didn't touch the seat in front.