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Flying to New York - Who would you travel with?

(37 Posts)
TeamLemon Fri 17-Jun-11 16:59:32

We were very disappointed not to get any Olympics tickets for next year, and DH suddenly announced "Sod it! Let's go and visit UncleLemon in America instead!"
I've not been over to see my family in the New Jersey area since 1995 and, obviously, a lot has changed in the world.

So who would you fly with?
We'd probably be flying economy, but don't want to be treated like cattle.
There would be 4 adults, a 7yo and a 4yo, so needs to be child friendly too.

Your advice would be very welcome!

expatinscotland Fri 17-Jun-11 17:00:20

From London with children those ages I'd go with whomever is cheapest, tbh.

TeamLemon Fri 17-Jun-11 17:04:45

So who is cheap?! wink

expatinscotland Fri 17-Jun-11 17:06:46

That depends entirely on time of year you go, day of the week, airport, length of time you go for, time in advance you buy the ticket, lots of factors.

TeamLemon Fri 17-Jun-11 17:15:58

This is stuff I haven't even thought of! Thank you.

We'll have to travel in the school summer holidays, and we'd go for at least three weeks.

When is the optimum time to book, do you think?

dinkystinky Fri 17-Jun-11 17:17:17

Virgin or BA I think - avoid the US carriers like the plague. Both Virgin and BA good with kids.

dinkystinky Fri 17-Jun-11 17:18:11

Oh and if you can stretch to it, try premium economy or world traveller plus - makes a world of difference when travelling with kids. We try to do one stretch of a journey in that (generally on way out) and does make it less stressful.

TennisFan Fri 17-Jun-11 17:19:20

Virgin would be my first choice - but i would have to factor in the price too - i dream of being able to pick and choose easily travel arrangments without looking really closely at my tiny budget.

Tsil Fri 17-Jun-11 17:20:11

We have used both BA and Virgin for fly to the US both were pretty good not much difference in the 2 for prices, service etc.

Emirates are really good as well but I am not sure if they fly to NYC.

mustdash Fri 17-Jun-11 17:22:09

If you're going to NJ rather than NY, I'd seriously consider flying to Philadelphia. Much nicer landing experience - small, clean, quick.

I also agree with Dinky about trying to upgrade a tiny bit on the way out. The small amount of extra space, makes a big difference with small people on a long flight.

expatinscotland Fri 17-Jun-11 17:22:18

I never fly out of London, we fly out of Glasgow and where we go in the US, there's no direct flights, so we usually wind up KLM to Amsterdam. On the way back, we spend the night in Amsterdam as we have three children, one of whom is only 2 so he's a handful.

So best getting advice from others here who fly from London more regularly.

I prefer European carriers or BA myself, however.

Sparkles23 Fri 17-Jun-11 17:25:01

Once you have an idea when you want to go check out Kayak-really good for finding cheapest flights and allows you to see cheapest dates in the month etc. Like someone already said though I would go BA or Virgin only even if was slightly more, I personally wouldn't use a US airline unless I had to - same goes for Air France too!

TeamLemon Fri 17-Jun-11 17:25:34

Lovely, thanks.

Hadn't thought of Philedelphia - will ask UncleLemon how feasible that is.

I'm going to check out BA & Virgin websites now.

Do you know what days/times offer cheaper flights?

Geordieminx Fri 17-Jun-11 17:29:36

We flew continental direct from Edinburgh, and honestly it was fine, no problems at all, cheaper and more convenient than flying via AMS or LGW which would have added 6 or 8 hours to journey.

The inflight entertainment was fab and the food was typical airline food.

MynamesMikeIswimlikeafish Fri 17-Jun-11 17:33:58

We flew with Delta from Manchester this Feb. It was fine, food was good (for plane fodder) the only issue was the lack of in flight entertainment on the way back but we had no children with us and it was a night flight so not an issue.

I have to say though that economy is economy whoever you fly with. Personally I'd avoid JFK given the option. Philedelphia a good idea.

I think we found our flights through Kayak.

Have a lovely time.

GollyHolightly Fri 17-Jun-11 17:34:50

I would fly with Johnny Depp. Or possibly Michael Palin. Perhaps Palin for the stories and Depp for the sex and the first class ticket.

TeamLemon Fri 17-Jun-11 17:38:00

<wanders off into Depp-induced fantasy daydream. Palin can watch>

JarethTheGoblinKing Fri 17-Jun-11 17:40:01

When are you planing on going?

follyfoot Fri 17-Jun-11 22:09:27

We went to NY with Virgin earlier this year. They were outstanding.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 18-Jun-11 07:53:02

Would use a British based carrier rather than a US airline.

BA and Virgin's prices can vary a great deal; do price compare on both websites before purchasing the flights. Would book it asap as these flights can and do fill.

Virgin's seat pitch is not at all good in economy; this may be a factor if either of you are very tall. BAs seat pitch in econony/world traveller tends to be a bit better.

NJ is quite a large state in terms of area. BA fly direct to Philadelphia (VA do not have this route). If UncleLemon lives in northern NJ, you'd be better off flying into Newark. Both BA and Virgin use Newark. Philadelphia is more suitable only if he lives in southerm NJ.

BTW do not rely totally on the airline to provide re foodstuffs and entertainment for the children. I've seen VA run out of childrens meals before now!. Bring along foodstuffs that they would like to eat and purchase a portable DVD player. Childrens programmes on longhaul can be limited.

TeamLemon Sat 18-Jun-11 11:17:13

We'd travel next August.

We are shortarses not a tall family, so legroom/pitch isn't a huge issue but obviously would like as much room as we can get!

I recall flying into Newark before (they're in Sussex County), so that is probably better than Philedelphia.

Thanks for the tips on children's food. DS1 has a DS that keeps him entertained the length of the M4, so would hopefully do the same on a flight. DVD player a good idea though <adds to holiday budget>

PestoCaffeinisto Sat 18-Jun-11 11:22:53


TeamLemon Sat 18-Jun-11 12:03:11

Wow, I just mocked up an itinery as if we were travelling this August.

Virgin came in at over £1700 cheaper than BA for the six of us to travel premium economy/world traveller plus.
That's quite a difference!

EmilyHallow Sat 18-Jun-11 12:13:12

Virgin's reliable and tends to be slightly cheaper but in my experience BA is better for kids. Don't forget about the time difference/ jetlag when you're thinking about flight times. I totally agree about trying to bump up to premium economy or business if you possibly can- makes a world of difference.
Fly into Newark or PA if possible, I would always avoid JFK unless we're staying in the City.
Have a fun trip!

TeamLemon Sat 18-Jun-11 12:26:05

Yes, I looked at an early afternoon flight outbound so arriving late afternoon having slept and rested.
Inbound I thought to get an early evening flight.

Does that sound sensible?

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