British Airways celebrated this week as the most successful commercial airline to operate a business class-only service between London and New York. Previous all-business class airlines such as Maxjet, Eos and Silverjet, all ceased trading within five years, however this week, a milestone was reached as British Airways business only service is five years old.
The Club World London City service offers customers the choice of a twice daily service, using two specially-configured Airbus A318s, each with just 32 fully-flat business-class seats and a specially tailored service. Between them, the two aircraft have flownover three and a half thousand times between London and New York, racking up over nine million miles, since flights started on September 29, 2009. Carrying the prestigious ex-Concorde numbers BA001 and BA003, on flights to New York, and the BA002 and BA004 for the return back to London, it’s the only long-haul service available from London City Airport.
On board, passengers are treated to a bespoke in-flight experience with three cabin crew offering complimentary drinks and a full a-la-carte meal service. They can also access the internet, send and receive emails and texts from their mobile phones during the flight, thanks to connectivity provided by OnAir. Personal iPads provide the latest movies, top TV shows and best-selling albums to listen to. Spacious seats and the stylish interior enable customers to relax or sleep on fully flat beds while crossing the Atlantic.
Perfect for City workers, customers can check-in up to 20 minutes before the aircraft departs, with luggage, and just 15 minutes prior to departure if carrying hand luggage and use the airline’s private departure lounge to relax before the flight – the only one at London City Airport.
While both services land briefly in Shannon to re-fuel, customers travelling on the first service of the day (the BA001) can disembark clear US customs and immigration land fly on to New York’s JFK as a domestic US passenger avoiding any queues.
Stephen Humphreys, British Airways’ head of UK&I sales, said: “The Club World London City service to New York is unique and is one of the jewels in the British Airways crown. Fares are affordable, and the service is highly-exclusive; a winning combination for business customers who want to maximise their time, and travel to New York in comfort and privacy.”
Regular London City traveller Andrew Solum said: “Travelling on this plane is as close as you’ll get to a private jet without the price tag. Those who fly it regularly would really like to see this boutique service kept a secret, but as British Airways is celebrating the flight’s fifth birthday, we realise that’s probably unrealistic!”
British Airways Business Only Service fares and times
BA001: dep LCY 09.45 – arr JFK 13.55 BA003: dep LCY 16.00 – arr JFK 20.15
BA002: dep JFK 19.05 – arr LCY 07.15 next day BA004: dep JFK 22.55 – arr LCY 10.05 next day
Lead-in fares: From £2,627 return, including taxes and charges