Having spent about 20 minutes in the Flagship Lounge at Heathrow it was time to board and on approaching the gate it was clear we were going to be late as the crew were still in the gate area. As I had not had the security check before this on my journey, I was taken aside and quizzed about my reasons for travel. As they were quite innocuous I answered the questions simply. It amused me that, when explaining that I was going shopping, I was asked to name the stores that I proposed to visit and to give their addresses. Fortunately Macy’s address in Manhattan in burned in my memory. I was also asked twice, where I worked, what I did and how long I had been there. Presumably to ensure that I was consistent in my explanation.
I found a seat and indeed we were about thirty minutes late in leaving. Boarding was chaotic with families with children charging the boarding area as soon as boarding was announced. AA clearly decided to make no attempt to restrict the size or volume of carry on baggage.
The plane was full, and I had a seat mid-cabin in the converted 777-200 aircraft’s business Class section. The seating features some backwards facing seats, but I had managed to get a forward facing one. It is a 1-2-1 config. This is a backward facing central seat – 2H.
This is backward facing window seat.
My seat had a blanket/pillow pack as well as an amenity kit, bottle of water, headset and menu, already at the seat. The staff had used the delay efficiently. These are the new seats that AA is in dispute with the maker about and it’s easy to see why. They move up and down when the person in adjoining seat shifts around. Not much, but it is clearly a rocking motion. This is the new Cole Haan kit, one of which I am giving away in a draw launched earlier today.
Soon it became clear that the flight was going be stressful when two very small children took their seats at the back of the cabin.
We left still late and taxied to the end of the runway when the Etihad A380 was getting ready to leave. I had just cashed in a pile of American miles for my first trip on this whale for January 2017.
The video screen is large but as it flips out of the adjoining wall, you cannot watch during take off and landing. The headset is in a small cupboard near the seat. There are two control screens, one for the seat and another for the video.
The seat can be placed in to a large number of positions and you can save your favourite so you can return to it later.
Soon we were offered a drink and nuts. I had pre-ordered the beef and the crew knew this when they took orders. The menu was as follows:
The beef was tasty and well prepared. Images of the meal are here:
The ice cream sundae was prepared to my specification.
I watched a movie and tried to sleep which was hard over the sounds of the crying babies.
It was a slow flight due to winds and I decided to have the second meal. It was OK, but no better than that. It was a flatbread pizza really.
We landed at the main terminal at JFK Terminal 8 and with Global entry I was out in about 10 minutes an in an Uber to Manhattan.
All round a decent flight and it would have been nice had I been able to sleep.