TRIP REPORT INDEX
Why are you sitting separately? You're Married? Yep. These seats are why.
Have you ever wondered why a married couple would choose to sit separate in the business class? Maybe they have enough of each other, but we had a different reason. I didn't really expect it but there were many questions and people were confused why we weren't sitting together. The agent at check in offered to change our seats (Nooo please!!), the flight attendant asked and other kind passengers offered to switch seats (Thanks but no thanks!). I wanted exactly those Captain Kirk Seats.
We paid for round trip tickets to fly on the new Aer Lingus Business Class to Dublin using 80,000 British Airways Avios per person round trip (40,000 each way). This is a short 5.5 hour overnight flight so there is not much time to sleep. In 2015, Aer Lingus introduced their new business class with lie flat seats + 2 “Captain Kirk” seats and I was looking forward to trying it out. The service was VERY friendly while the food was just ok.
Plane: Airbus 330-200
Flight: JFK (New York City) – DUB (Dublin)
HOW TO BOOK IT
As of April 28, 2015, the Avios devaluation caused the price of this award redemption to go up to 60k (BA charges the peak price for partner awards all year round) up from 40k. Availability is scarce and not searchable on BA.com, so you will have to call into BA to search or book. The easier way would be to go to United.com and search for an award seat with the box checked off for NONSTOP only. United.com searches Air Lingus award seats without issues. So use United.com to search, and if you find any availability, call BA to book (800) 247 9297.
CAPTAIN KIRK SEATS
I didn't know it at the time, but there are 2 seats in business class that are better than all the rest. TravelSkills wrote about these “Captain Kirk” seats in his review. I immediately selected these seats (3K and 5K) which take up as much space as the two seats in front or behind you and have the benefits of both a window and isle seat. There is space on both sides and no one sitting next to you. One downside is that it seems the leg room when you lay flat isn't as wide since it goes under the 2 seats in front of you. I didn't care and would pick those same seats every time.
These “Captain Kirk” seats (3K and 5K) are probably my favorite feature of the flight. They give you so much space on both sides and plenty of privacy. When checking in, the agent didn't appear to know that these are different (better) than the single seats on the left side of the cabin. Check out the Seatguru.com seat map (they have this listed as an Airbus 330-300 but the safety pamphlet in the backseat pocked said it's a 330-200). This video shows the entire cabin and the layout of all the seats.
- Best/Largest Seats: 3K and 5K
- 2nd Best Seats: 3A and 5A (single seats with the console on the aisle to prevent people bumping into your elbow)
On the bottom to the right of your feet there is a storage compartment for a laptop, some magazines, and my shoes below.
The two seats in front share the same amount of space. One more seat forward is 3K — where Mrs. Rewardboss was sitting. The guy in front of her was a bit friendly and confused about why we were sitting separately, or maybe he was hitting on her.
All of the seats lay flat and give you a very light massage (which I used during dinner).
This sexy lighting set the mood near the water holder. Below that was a convenient USB and an outlet to plug in your phone and/or laptop. As nicely lit up as it was, that water holder was stuck and made it really hard to get the water out. I had to almost rip out the water bottle from the top making it bend in the middle… and was worried I might spill it everywhere.
A pic from the front – a friend enjoying the “Captain Kirk” seat. He took the flight on a different day and gave me permission to post this pic.
This is what happens when you only have 20,000 Avois points and have to fly coach (each way, r/t was Avios, half the cost of Business). This is another friend flying on another day. I really hope she gives me permission to post without blocking her unhappy face because it's quite funny.
The service was excellent. The flight attendants were extremely friendly and hospitable. Here's an interesting piece on why they don't like to be called “stewardesses“…miniskirts, eye candy, and flirting.
Since the pre-flight meal options in the lounge left a lot to be desired (it sucked), we had dinner on the flight. I choose the “express option” which could be brought out quickly so you can get to sleep sooner – that was the Whiskey-braised beef short-ribs, celeraic, broccoli, and roasted red peppers. The presentation is ok – and the meal is perhaps an upgraded version of what I've had in coach on other flights. Good… not great. I was having flashbacks again to the awesome experience on Eva Air's Royal Laurel Class.
and I made it a complete Irish dinner experience with Jameson's Irish whiskey.
If you're willing to wait for the food (or don't eat meat), you can choose the salmon. Again the food was good…not great.
One dessert option – Irish coffee tart. I skipped this one. Coffee anything is not for me.
In the morning, you can look forward to this: An Irish Bacon roll. A good, basic, quick snack. I swear I had something like this on a coach flight before but maybe without the raspberry.
I was pleasantly surprised to find out that WIFI was free and it worked! They hand out these cards soon after take off. They are good for a 1 time use for the entire flight.
The amenity kit is not fancy at all. It's a fabric bag that will likely get thrown in the trash, which includes some Pepsodent toothpaste and mouthwash, Voya facial cream and lip balm, ear plugs, and a really really lousy toothbrush. After about 3 uses, the the bristles were flatted as if it had been used for months. This makes me appreciate the Eva Air Royal Laurel Class amenity kit that much more!
The business class seats offer a very nice 16” Panasonic high definition multi-touch screen. While it is nice, my priority was to get a couple hours of sleep so I can keep my eyes open while driving in the morning. Since I had some time to kill before my food arrived, I watched part of a movie before and during dinner, then went to sleep. They provide noise canceling headphones either in the small pouch below the TV or drop them off one by one.
The movie selection was pretty good too!
Aer Lingus offers business class passengers a second lounge – one to visit when you arrive. This will be my first arrival lounge. In addition to showers and light breakfast foods, they offer to steam press your shirt or suit. We stopped in for a bathroom break and hoping for some breakfast… but I'll cover that in another post.
And one last photo of an airline that I loathe for charging me 45 € per person because their website wouldn't allow me to check in before the flight. At this point, I didn't yet know I was going to despise them.
My Cameras: These photos were taken using my Canon S110 Digital Camera (which has been replaced by the S120) as well as my larger Nikon D50. I love the S110 – it’s tiny, fits in my pocket, and takes amazing pictures/videos.
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