BA versus VIRGIN

Discussion in 'Virgin Atlantic | Flying Club' started by AndyMorgan, Nov 8, 2017.

  1. AndyMorgan

    AndyMorgan New Member

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    Currently weighing up return flights to New York. My options are:

    BA: WT+ return for 78K Avios plus £903 tax

    BA: CW out / WT+ return for 104K Avios plus £989

    OR

    VIRGIN: Premium Return for 70K Miles plus £755

    Seems a no brainer to me... but having never flown either I'd love a few opinions.
     
    JoeD likes this.
  2. endian675

    endian675 New Member

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    BA CW/WT+ for me. You may even get lucky and get bumped up on the WT+ leg.
     
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  3. JoeD

    JoeD Well-Known Member

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    If it was a straight comparison between Virgin Premium Economy vs BA WT+ then definitely Virgin for me. The CW possibility mixes things up a bit, but I'd argue is less important on the way out than on the way back (assuming that's a night flight) so I'd switch that if there's availability.

    I'd say the ideal would be Virgin PE out and BA CW back if there's availability and it doesn't mess with the surcharges too much. (Well, obviously the ideal would actually be Virgin Upper Class both ways!).

    The other thing to consider is whether using Avios/Miles for PE to New York makes sense given the relatively high costs both in Miles and cash, compared to booking a cheap Norwegian flight + £25 for extra legroom. You could likely make yourself very comfortable on Norwegian for less than £700 Return (buy a bottle of nice champagne with the savings!) and you'd still have your Miles.

    Or you could mix it up and do Norwegian (or Wow etc) one-way and CW/Upper Class the other. For Europe-East Coast USA outbounds I'd genuinely recommend just going for extra legroom Economy. It's about as comfortable as PE on a relatively short daytime flight.

    I always struggle to decide what to do on the way back though because I'm yet to find a way that makes a short night flight actually comfortable - you're getting a max of ~3-4 hours sleep and will feel pretty rubbish the next day even coming back in First (in fact, prob worse in First as the Grand Siecle is difficult to say no to). I've genuinely discussed the possibility of routing via Miami or something if travelling Biz/First to make the flight long enough to sleep!

    The last couple of times I've just booked the cheapest low cost carrier, got extra legroom, some nice food and a few drinks and made the best of it. The reasoning being that if I'm going to be tired and grumpy the next day regardless, then I might as well save myself some cash/Miles.
     
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  4. FlyingPiggie

    FlyingPiggie Active Member

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    Personally I find CW / F back from JFK to be a waste. Too short of a flight to sleep much, yet reduced service because the assumption is everybody wants to sleep. You also have higher surcharges ex-USA.

    So CW out / WT+ back would take it for me.

    Also... it's really time to be burning those Avios if variable pricing is on the way.
     
  5. Richies

    Richies New Member

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    Agree - the flight is too short to make Club World worthwhile!
     
  6. Richard1974

    Richard1974 New Member

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    I agree with JoeD's comments above. For me, additional factors to consider include the time of the flight (whether it's an overnight or daytime flight); who's paying (my employer or me); and whether I have to work the next day (if I do, then maybe it's worth a business class cabin to ease the journey). Definitely worth considering just flying economy cabin and getting additional legroom or an exit seat.
     
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  7. D4BV2

    D4BV2 New Member

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    Flown both. Prefer Virgin for comfort and class
     
  8. AlexBA9719

    AlexBA9719 New Member

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    With the current fleets in service - Virgin is much better for comfort/practicality. BA CW is good but currently isn't a brand leader
     
  9. Darren0291

    Darren0291 Member

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    personally i think virgin is much better than Ba, but BA have more options so usually forced to use them :(
     
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  10. AlexBA9719

    AlexBA9719 New Member

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    BA is currently lagging behind when it comes to travel. Their Business Class is one of the worst in the industry at the moment. But as many have said the vast number of destinations compared to Virgin makes it my first choice. When the new fleet starts to roll in this could change massively though... BA should step it up in a big way! *fingers crossed*
     
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  11. cathyb84

    cathyb84 New Member

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    BA definitely need to up their game
     
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  12. litefoot

    litefoot Active Member

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    BA are not going to get much better. That would require them to dramatically improve Business and First Class to compete with Qatar, Singapore and Etihad; drop fees for seat selection, baggage and food; improve their food; and improve their customer service.

    Despite the new fleet coming into action soon, I doubt the above is going to happen.
     
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  13. JoeD

    JoeD Well-Known Member

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    All fair - off the top of my head I can't think of a route where, if the prices were the same, I'd pick BA, assuming the competitor also offers a direct flight. But that's the crucial point for a lot of people I think - BA flies direct from London to lots of places.

    My schedule is usually relatively flexible so I actually like routing with overnight connections in places etc, but convenience/travel time is a huge factor for business travellers and leisure travellers without much holiday time.

    Basically, I don't really see the financial incentive for BA to improve much (however much we might like them to!)
     
  14. Themax3121

    Themax3121 New Member

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    I can't help but think BA is slowly becoming a discount airline with their service. But probably better than Virgin given their availability and options.
     
  15. tomlee80

    tomlee80 New Member

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    I find myself ending up with BA more and more lately due to price/availability. But if I had a choice it would be Virgin every time. The comfort and service is far better in my experience.
     
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  16. VinoTYT

    VinoTYT New Member

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    no first class redemption on virgin :(
     
  17. West

    West New Member

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    Are there any differences you find between BA and Virgin on point redemption seat availability? I keep wavering between getting either a BA or Virgin point Amex / Mastercard and ease of redemption would probably be the deciding factor.

    Thanks.
     
  18. tiribam

    tiribam New Member

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    Going to NY in March and still debating with my friends which airline to go for? Any help much appreciated
     
  19. JoeD

    JoeD Well-Known Member

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    Availability with BA is probably better in general, simply because of the much greater number of partner airlines you can also redeem on, but it really is very much route dependent - for some destinations Virgin would likely be a better option.
     
  20. JoeD

    JoeD Well-Known Member

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    To NY, in Economy I would honestly just pick the cheapest/most convenient flight and wouldn't worry about the 'service' etc. None of the options are amazing, but it's a relatively short flight.

    My usual 'trick' is to book a super cheap Norwegian flight and pay ~£20 for an exit row/extra legroom seat. You can buy food/drinks onboard for reasonable prices (about a tenner for something decent-ish to eat like a big chicken salad). I don't usually travel with a suitcase though, so you'd have to factor in the cost of that vs the other options, if you do.

    I wouldn't personally bother flying Biz/First (using miles or cash) - not long enough to make it really worthwhile in my opinion.
     

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