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BA flights to Hong Kong experiences - good or bad

40 replies

Yourownpersonaljesus · 20/12/2019 23:26

Has anyone flown with BA to Hong Kong recently? My adult DD (she's not on MN herself) is off to HK in January and I was wondering if anyone could tell me anything useful about BA's service etc. She'll be flying alone. Does she need to book a seat?
Thanks.

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Dolorabelle · 20/12/2019 23:51

It's an 8 hour flight (or is it 10, can't remember). you can book a seat fo free when you check in, otherwise they charge on a sliding scale.

It's a pretty standard flight really. Don't know that there's anything special your DD needs to know.

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 21/12/2019 07:51

Thanks Dolarabelle. How are British Airways? She's only flown long haul with Virgin and short haul with the budget airlines.

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notimagain · 21/12/2019 09:23

"It's an 8 hour flight (or is it 10, can't remember)"

FWIW it's can be well over 11 hours (actual flying time, so maybe 12 hours gate to gate) eastbound at this time of year. FWIW it can be significantly more coming back to the UK due to the prevailing winds at altitude.

BA currently operate two flights a day on the route, the BA 27 is usually a A380, the BA 31 is usually a Boeing 777-300, so whichever flight she will be travelling on she will be on newish "equipment"...

She can select her seat for a fee now, via ba.com ( go to "manage my booking,") within 24 hours (I think) of departure on-line seat selection becomes free..if she doesn't select ahead of time she will be allocated a seat when she checks in, either on-line or at the airport

I'll leave the rest of the customer experience for others to comment on.

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Ginfordinner · 21/12/2019 09:25

We flew Cathay Pacific from Manchester via Paris. It is a lot longer than 8 hours without the stop.

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AttilaTheMeerkat · 21/12/2019 09:32

She will need to check in online 24 hours in advance and print off her boarding pass or have this on her mobile phone.

Have done this routing with BA within the last year, its a long flight of around 11-12 hours. It was ok as far as flights go and the service was as expected for such a flight.

HK is a huge airport and it can therefore be a long walk from the arrival gate to immigration.

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notimagain · 21/12/2019 09:41

I'd agree it is probably best to check-in on-line since it removes a lot of the on the day stress but it is still possible to check-in and print the boarding pass at LHR.

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 21/12/2019 10:06

Thanks for the helpful replies everyone. Her flight out is just under 12 hours and slightly longer coming back. She's on an airbus 380 which apparently have been recently updated. She's travelling alone as she's studying there for a semester as part of her degree - that's why I was wondering if she needed to book her seat in advance (I'm guessing it's necessary if families want to be seated together).

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HouseworkAvoider10 · 21/12/2019 10:36

Just flew HK to LHR.
Wasn't great.
No on board entertainment for me as the movies/shows kept spooling and none of them would play.
For all 13 hours of it.

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notimagain · 21/12/2019 10:58

"I was wondering if she needed to book her seat in advance (I'm guessing it's necessary if families want to be seated together)."

Even if flying "solo" it might be worth her considering booking a seat before check-in, especially if she wants an aisle seat so as to avoid being trapped for 12ish hours in a window seat or between to other passengers. Whether it's worth paying to do so now or risk waiting until the free window open is obviously her choice, but IMHO those flights do get busy..

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notimagain · 21/12/2019 11:19

...free seat choice window is open..

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 21/12/2019 13:01

Thank you. Any recommendations for good seats from those who fly often? She's at work at the moment but I'll let her know later.

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 21/12/2019 13:04

Oh no that doesn't sound good HouseworkAvoider10.

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notimagain · 21/12/2019 13:49

Probably help if we knew which flight number is involved ( no need for the date), because that will tell us which type of aircraft your daughter will be flying on and the frequent passengers can take it from there..upper deck on the 380 tends to be popular and gets good reviews but she is booked on the BA31 that's not an option..

As a starter I'd suggest an aisle seat away from both the toilet and galley areas...easy access to/from her seat for her but less risk of galley noise or being disturbed by people queuing for the loo..

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 21/12/2019 14:02

She's on the BA0027 (Airbus A380).

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 21/12/2019 14:04

Regular economy.

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notimagain · 21/12/2019 15:11

Being a relative newbie I'm not sure what mumsnet rules are on mentioning other forums is - I'll take a risk

Try Googling something like: "flyertalk, Best economy seat for solo traveller on A380"

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 21/12/2019 16:10

Thank you so much. I'll take a look.

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BubblesBuddy · 22/12/2019 00:08

Seat guru web site gives you reliable info on the seats in the aircraft for the route. Red seats are the ones to avoid. I would pay the tarrif for the extra leg room seats now. They won’t be around 24 hours before the flight. Otherwise avoid seats by loos and the galley as suggested. Book a few rows back from the front of the class. This tends to avoid anything annoying and she won’t be last off the plane. Avoid the back!

My DD flew to meet a friend in HK when she was 16 on her own and found BA looked after her very well and upgraded her to business. She was surprised and delighted. We fly BA regularly and they are better than some! Virgin cattle class is not anything great either.

A few aircraft might have issues but all airlines can suffer from that. Take your own entertainment! Read a book and do puzzles.

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 22/12/2019 10:03

Thanks BubblesBuddy I'll tell her to look on there. That's amazing that your daughter got upgraded.

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MozzchopsThirty · 22/12/2019 10:10

I do this route every year
Always flown with BA but this year we went with virgin which was much better

Flight is about 11 hours

I'd pick the BA flights on the A380 rather than the 777. Slightly nite room and I prefer larger planes

Both are night flights so sleep is good

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 22/12/2019 10:20

Thanks Mozzchops. She's on the A380.

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MozzchopsThirty · 22/12/2019 10:25

Sorry OP just read full thread!

The A380 is the better option.
Always ask for the CSD on board about the possibility of upgrade as a solo traveller

Book extra legroom seat if finances allow. These were only £80 on Virgin and also on Thai recently.
Definitely look on seat guru for best seats
Take snacks although they do offer some onboard

And tell her to enjoy HK it's one of my favourite places in the world

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 22/12/2019 13:16

Thanks Mozzchops. That's all really helpful. What does CSD stand for btw? As she's a student and paying for most of the trip herself I don't think she'll worry about the extra legroom seats - also she's not very tall! She's studying at The University of Hong which is on Hong Kong Island. As a regular visitor, is there anywhere you'd recommend she should visit?

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MozzchopsThirty · 22/12/2019 14:00

Cabin services director - basically the person with the power to upgrade.

Oh wow she will have the most amazing time. I have friends there, it's pretty quiet at the moment but it's been rough

So much to see and do, some touristy some not so much

Taxis are cheap
MTR is cheap and super safe
Food is ridiculous unless you're eating local

Touristy:
Big Buddha (on the cable car)
The peak (take the tram)
Chi Lin Nunnery has beautiful gardens
Mid levels escalators
Tai O
Star Ferry
Ladies market or night market

Other stuff:
Must eat a fresh warm egg tart
Chicken feet & dim sum
Monogamous - fantastic western Chinese food
Mr Wolf - great cocktails, food and the best Sunday lunch I've ever had
Beach at silverstrand
Visit some of the local areas like Hang Hau, Sai Kung etc
Sugar - rooftop bar

Any other questions just ask Smile

We're going out again in April and I can't wait

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Yourownpersonaljesus · 22/12/2019 14:47

Thank you - that's brilliant. I'll forward your post onto her. I wish I was going!

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