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AIR NEW ZEALAND to Cease London Services

The Kiwi national carrier has made a strategic decision to redeploy aircraft capacity on faster-growing markets. The upshot is that, from October 2020, the airline’s Los Angeles-London (NZ1/2) service will cease to operate.

“Today Kiwis have more than twice the number of ways to fly to London than a decade ago and preferences have changed. Less than seven percent of all airline travellers between Auckland and London chose to fly via Los Angeles last year.”

Jeff McDowall, Air New Zealand acting chief executive officer.

“At the same time, the Atlantic has become one of the most hotly contested routes in the world and Air New Zealand lacks the home market advantages and scale of the North American and European airlines we’re up against,” he added.

The news comes at the same time as the airline’s announcement of proposed year-round, non-stop 787-9 Dreamliner services between Auckland and New York also due to commence in October 2020.

The airline’s Auckland to Los Angeles services—up to 12 per week—will continue to operate.

From October 2020, Air New Zealand customers will be able to travel year-round between Auckland and London with partner airlines via 12 gateways in Asia and the Americas, including New York.

Air New Zealand’s Business Premier cabin.

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WE KNOW: British Airways ‘Club World’ Business Class

Emma Dalton, Senior Corporate Travel Consultant at The Travel Authority Corporate Sydney, has recently returned from an insightful (and luxurious) trip to Singapore and Europe.

Pics from Emma’s British Airways Club World experience.

Emma was invited by The Travel Authority Group’s friends at British Airways and Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts to inspect their luxury offerings first-hand. As she travelled, Emma put BA’s Club World Business Class through its paces aboard the airline’s Airbus and Boeing aircraft.

  • BA016 Sydney to Singapore – Boeing 777
  • BA012 Singapore to London – Airbus A380
  • BA011 London to Singapore – Airbus A380
  • BA015 Singapore to Sydney – Boeing 777

Club World cabin on British Airways A380 aircraft.

On the ground, Emma ran her discerning eye over Shangri-La hotels in Singapore, Paris and London, including some Hotel Jen by Shangri-La properties

CLICK HERE to read about Emma’s Shangri-La hotel inspections in Singapore.

With such high quality ingredients, it’s no surprise that Emma returned to work absolutely buzzing from her BA & Shangri-La experience.

“It was an amazing trip—just incredible”, said Emma.

“From the moment I entered The House lounge in Sydney to the moment I landed home nine days later, the entire experience was absolute luxury. British Airways Club World business class was great. Frankly, the reviews do not do it justice. I have absolutely no hesitation selling and recommending Club World”, added Emma.

British Airways now invites its Sydney Club World and First passengers to The House lounge, rather than the Qantas lounges which have been the airline’s longstanding choice.

The House location at Sydney International Airport.

However, Qantas lounges remain available to BA flyers under Oneworld alliance lounge access rules.

“The House lounge is quiet and intimate and has a great selection of food. You can have a sit down meal before you board your flight—great if you want to board your flight and get straight to work or sleep”, advises Emma.

Service at The House includes à-la-carte dining with waiter service, shower facilities and unlimited WiFi.

Upon boarding flight BA016, the premium service and comfort continued.

“The luxurious Club World bedding by The White Company is just lovely. I loved that they supply a day blanket as well as a duvet for sleeping. Topped off by the biggest pillows in business class, it’s incredibly comfortable. I slept almost as well as I would in my own bed”, she reports.

Club World bedding and in-flight amenity kit.

Emma also noted some nice touches on the in-flight menu.

“In addition to an impressive wine list, on overnight flights, BA offers an an entrée and desert menu to help passengers maximise sleep time. This is a great option if you want something light before making the most of the comfortable bedding. Breakfast can be ordered in advance so it’s ready for you when you wake up”, says Emma.

Comparing the Club World cabins on different aircraft, Emma notes the configuration on both the A380 and the B777 was very similar, although the A380 did feel a little more updated.

“I was seated upstairs on the A380, but made sure to visit the Club World cabin on the lower level. Interestingly, even though there are more seats downstairs, the higher ceilings did make the cabin feel more spacious than the upper deck”, says Emma.

Club World’s forwards-backwards ‘yin-yang’ configuration.

Of Club World’s forwards-backwards seat layout, Emma says, “I travelled forwards and backwards on different sectors and, apart from take off and landing, I found little difference between travelling one way or the other.”

At Singapore Changi Airport, Emma accessed the British Airways Lounge and Concorde Bar in Terminal 1 before pushing on to Paris via London Heathrow. In transit, Emma made the most of services available at the British Airways Galleries Lounge in Terminal 5.

Elemis Spa, T5 Heathrow.

“At Heathrow T5, I recommend heading straight to the Elemis Spa in the lounge area. The spa offers complimentary 15-minute treatments for BA Club World and First customers. Club World customers can’t book ahead but I secured a spot right away”, says Emma.

“The mini facial was just great after our long-haul flight, and filled in the time before our onward flight to Paris. It was the perfect way to transit T5”, added Emma.

For more information about Emma’s BA experience, simply leave us a note in the form below, or CALL US to discuss your specific requirements.

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BA Celebrates Centenary With Retro Liveries

This announcement from British Airways is sure to send plane-fancier hearts aflutter.

As part of the airline’s centenary commemorations, British Airways has today announced it will be painting four of its aircraft in much-loved retro designs from its past—the first confirmed as a Boeing 747 in a British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC) design.

This first aircraft will return to London Heathrow from the paint factory on 18 February ready to re-enter service the following day. Pleasingly, this coincides with the 50th anniversary of the first Boeing 747 flight only a few days earlier.

The 747 has been deliberately chosen for the BOAC livery as it is a later variant of the same aircraft type that adorned the design when it was initially in operation.

Three more aircraft will receive popular designs from British Airways’ past over the coming months with more details to be revealed in due course.

All four aircraft will fly British Airways’ routes, proudly showcasing some of the popular designs as part of the airline’s centenary celebrations.

“So many British Airways customers and colleagues have fond memories of our previous liveries, regularly sharing their photos from across the globe. It’s incredibly exciting to be re-introducing some classic designs, and what better place to start than the iconic BOAC livery”, said Alex Cruz, British Airways’ Chairman and CEO.

The BOAC livery will remain on the Boeing 747 until it retires in 2023. By this time, British Airways will have retired the majority of its 747 fleet, replacing them with new state-of-the-art long-haul aircraft. This includes
taking delivery of 18 A350s and 12 Boeing 787 Dreamliners in the next four years.

“This is such a lovely way to commemorate British Airways’ 100th birthday”, says Sarah Bush, Director of The Travel Authority Group.

“We look forward to seeing this gorgeous old livery—and the three to come—take flight on aircraft across BA’s global network, and we wish them a very happy 100th birthday”, adds Sarah.

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