After a cold, exhausted, and fairly disappointing day in Seattle we were looking forward to our Premium economy flight back to London aboard the 787 Dreamliner. On our outward leg, we had received excellent service and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. But outward legs are always better than return legs. The giddy excitement of the coming trip, the more sociable time, and a generally better feeling all make the time fly by.
for our return leg we would be exhausted, depressed, and flying overnight with our body clocks completely messed up. It will need to be an exceptional service to make this enjoyable.
We will keep this fairly brief as we are in the process of a full review so just observe the particulars of THIS flight.
Boarding the plane using the Fasttrack lane was bliss considering the condition we were in. No hassle just walk up and straight onto our large comfy Premium Economy seat. Compared to the Delta Comfort plus offering these seats are incredible.
Within seconds we had a welcome drink of prosecco as we got comfy while the rest of the passengers boarded. This time around we were offered a fairly fancy amenity kit. It seems Virgin has really tightened up on giving these out. We used to get them every flight now it is just Night flights. Our Premium seats got us the upgraded kit. However, apart from the fancy bag, we don’t think we got anything different.
A Quick Peek into Business Class
Our heads were dropping already and this would be a fight to make it through to Dinner! The flight left on time and we quickly soared off into the sky heading for Canada. The Green landscape quickly turned white as we cruised towards the night.
We had a very lively crew, who cajoled us into staying awake for dinner and were very pleasant indeed. One Hostess was enthralled with the fact we were flying back from Hawaii and had no idea Virgin Atlantic served flights there. You always seem to get a good level of service in Premium and tonight was no exception. Fortunately, as the flight wore on and all anyone needs or wanted was sleep. The Cabin Crew dropped the energy and all but vanished.
We love the Virgin IFE and the Dreamliner’s implementation is the best yet. However, our attention span Meant we struggled to enjoy it much and simply focused on loading up on as much booze as we could to pass out.
Food and Drink
As we left a 2:00 pm Dinner was quite a time as the crew needed to, well wait until dinner time. This was a challenge for us. We really only had one thing on our minds and that was sleep. But we drank our way through and eventually, the meals were served.
The Premium economy meals are served on real china and are very good for airline food. Remember that caveat though as it is still airline food. The Menu was rather poor this time, The Starter was just the usual leaves and a bit of cheese and tomato. For the main, I opted for the Beef Stroganoff over the Chicken while Kate had the Four Cheese tortellini, which is one of her favs so the Veggie option was good for once.
The Lemon Pistachio Cake was a pretty poor pudding in both our opinions. Not in execution but in concept. The Meal came with the usual wine pairing but it’s just a choice of red or white really. But the offerings are decent. Shortly after the meal a choice of Brandy and Cream liquor are offered and we gladly excepted and this was the final straw.
Fancy Amenities kit for Overnight Flights
We both found something boring and monotonous to have on the screen, dimmed it down, plugged in the Noise canceling eyephones and got as comfy as possible, and drifted off as best we could. Sleep comes easier on a flight to kate than it does to me. But It didn’t take long until we were both off with the fairies.
Getting to sleep is rarely my problem it’s staying there I struggle with and a long fitful few hours followed as I jolted in and out of consciousness. This was no fault of anyone but my own physiology. The seat was fantastically comfortable and the cabin quiet and dark. Our Noise-canceling headphones meant it was practically silent but I just couldn’t stay under.
5 hours felt like about 1 so I obviously got plenty but by then I was coming around properly with still a good 3 hours to go. A morning movie and some long walks to the Wander Wall for drinks and snacks filled the time until breakfast.
Breakfast came as was probably the best Airline breakfast we have had. It wasn’t a lot but was actually appetizing. There was a Granola Yoghurt, a large and very tasty Pan Au Chocolat, and some fruit. Along with some Coffee or Tea. This was our first chance at decent tea in over two weeks so we jumped at the chance!
The Approach and landing all went well with me just cramming in the last few seconds of my film before the IFE went off and then we were first off the plane and on our way to immigration and baggage collection. All going as well as possible.
Homeward – Chaos
Upon leaving the Terminal things started to go wrong. We were parked at our Hotel the Crowne Plaza Heathrow which is less than a mile away. On the way in we had used Uber for a very reasonable £8. Now as we were at Heathrow the price had quadrupled up to £30+. We don’t like being held to ransom so decided to use the Heathrow hotel Hopper Bus.
As expected we arrive at the bus stop just as the bus left. so had a 30 minutes wait in the cold. It turns up and has a 3 hotel route. We were last. The traffic was unfathomably terrible and the ride took over an hour. At the second hotel, we waited 15 mins to through a junction to the hotel. The exit was back at the beginning of that queue and we had to do it all over again.
By the time we got to our car, 3 hours had elapsed since we landed. We were both tired and very grumpy at this point and still had London’s rush hour traffic to fight through! The idea to drive to London and park at the hotel had seemed a great one and worked so well on the way out. Coming back it was pretty nightmarish.
A rather solum 3-hour trek back up t Manchester ensued. No breaks just head down driving. We finally got home to Maui, our little cat, and fell into a long deep sleep. A rubbish end to an amazing adventure.
We don’t do not Travelling very well. So we had already booked our next trip before we had left for L.A / Maui. So this LIVE BLOG will return in November for our latest trip to NEW YORK CITY!
Hope You enjoyed reading.