Saturday, 1 September 2012

Flight Review: British Airways London Heathrow to Hong Kong

Who:  I was flying back to Hong Kong with 2 kids (3.5 yo, 10 mth old) plus mother in law.  Recovering from an operation, I paid extra for Premium Economy on British Airways.

What:  BA 27 London Heathrow departs 10pm, arrives Hong Kong 4pm

Check In
You can't check in online if you are travelling with an infant.  Allow at least 2 hours before your flight.

At T5 we were directed to an 'Assistance' counter as most are labelled 'Bag Drop'.  A rather surly member of check in staff then informed us we weren't all sitting together.  Had I been upgraded to First and my baby down to Economy?  No such luck but fortunately as the flight was empty the problem was rectified.

I took the stroller to the Gate and then switched the baby to an Ergo carrier.  On the Hong Kong side the stroller was returned promptly - there's nothing worse than a long wait with a heavy, crying baby.

Whilst approaching the Gate, a member of staff spied our kids in tow and informed us we could board first.


The cabins of BA's 777s have a newer feel to the 747s.  We trudged grudgingly passed a delicious looking business class and located our Premium Economy seats. I was impressed with the cabin; clean seats that were slightly larger than economy, foot rests and bigger TV screens.  The only downside is you can't move the armrests.  If you are in a bulkhead seat you don't have much space to put your belongings but once the bassinet table is in place you can stash things on there.

The flight was half empty and we departed on time.

As soon as the seatbelt sign was off, the staff came to set up a Britax car seat.  My baby was pretty comfortable in there and slept a solid 6 hours. However, at 10 months I'm not sure how much longer she's going to be able to fit.
Frustratingly every time the 'fasten seatbelt' sign comes on you have to remove your baby.  Yes even if it's taken 4 hours to get them to sleep.

Unlike other airlines e.g. Cathay, BA don't provide an infant meal.  I had also forgotten to book a Child's meal for my 3 year old (why don't I take my own advice?).  However, she tucked into the adult meal happily, a rather average beef dish with pasta salad to start and lemon posset dessert.  Breakfast was BA's usual egg mush with a sausage.  BA also put out crisps, raisins and biscuits in the Galley during the flight.

BA's cabin crew are a mixed bag.  You get some real gems who engage your kids and regularly offer you help.  Others are snarly and downright rude.

My toddler is usually given an Activity Pack but wasn't offered one on this flight.
The Video on Demand was excellent. There were plenty of kids movies and TV shows to keep my toddler entertained.  Her only complaint was that the headphones were too big but I didn't ask the staff if they had kids ones.

Changing Facilities
As the flight was empty, I changed my baby on the floor of the bulkhead.  There is a long walk from Premium Economy to the toilets at the back of the plane on a 777.  The toilets did have changing tables which flipped down over the toilets.  The toilets were kept in a good condition.


  1. Nicola I have found your blog invaluable as I'm just about to fly BA (econ) to SA with my 10 month old. Loads of useful info so thanks a million.

  2. My pleasure - good luck! Keep checking with BA that you have reserved the bulkhead seat