After a lovely visit to the Clubhome, which is located landside, I made my method airside around 70 minutes before departure, considering that I likewise wanted to walk approximately a little prior to the flight. I headed for protection, which was sensibly quiet. While I was able to use the premium security line, I wasn’t able to “self select” whether I wanted the complete body scanner or metal detector. Sure enough they were sending everyone via the full body scanner, and as usual I opted out. I requested a personal pat down. I’m constantly annoyed at the agents that quizzically ask why I pick to opt out, so I sindicate respond with “because I choose to acquire my money’s worth.”
A couple of minutes of fondling later, I was great to go. The international terminal is fairly nice, so I was happy to walk roughly for a bit, prior to heading to gate A11, which is at the incredibly finish of the pier.
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About 45 minutes prior to leave boarding began with Upper Class, and the genuine fun began.
Virgin Atlantic 20San Francisco (SFO) – London (LHR)Sunday, March 6Depart: 5:50PMArrive: 12:25PM (+1 day)Duration: 10hr35minAircraft: A340-600Seat: 11A (Upper Class)
Based on pictures that I had actually viewed of the A340-600 cabin, I had actually assumed Upper Class would feel especially crowded, given that tbelow are 17 rows of Upper Class seats in a single cabin, in a 1-1-1 configuration. I was hoping to fly the 747 bereason of that, provided that tright here are several sepaprice Upper Class cabins – in the nose, then a major cabin, and also some Upper Class seats on the upper deck.
My impression couldn’t have been additionally from the fact. Yes, tbelow were a lot of seats, however the cabin was sleek and each seat felt quite private. The trip attendant at the door welcomed me aboard and directed me to my seat, which was a little more than halfway ago in the Upper Class cabin on the left side of the aircraft.
It’s worth noting that while the cabin is in a 1-1-1 configuration, the center section seats confront the left side of the aircraft for the first half of the cabin, and the right side of the aircraft for the second fifty percent of the cabin. In other words, I was actually happy to be sitting more than halfmeans ago, given that I was facing a wall surface instead of various other passengers. So for those flying Upper Class on the A340-600, I imply either sitting on the appropriate hand also side if you’re in the front of the cabin or left hand also side if you’re in the ago of the cabin.
Anymethod, earlier to the flight. The mood lighting was on, the music was relaxing, and the cabin felt remarkably “fresh” despite having been around for fairly a while currently. On my ottomale was the menu and “snooze load,” and also alongside my seat was a bottle of water and noise canceling headphones.
As soon as I settled into my seat a trip attendant came by to introduce herself and ask me if I wanted anypoint to drink. I went through ice water. She then told me around the trip and also asked me if I was acquainted via the seat, to which I responded that the seat looked awtotally similar to that of Air New Zealand also and also Air Canada. She defined the “lovely turndown service” they carry out (her words), urging me to take benefit of it as soon as I was exhausted. She also defined that I might have actually my seat in any position I wanted for takeoff and landing (which is awesome), given that it’s a herringbone style seat. Lastly, she offered me a set of pajamas. A massive thumbs as much as Virgin for supplying pajamas in service class — they’re the first airline I’ve flown that provides pajamas in company course.
As the cabin ongoing to fill up, I experienced the flight attendants perform the exact same for every Upper Class passenger, which I believed was outstanding.
So before we go any kind of better, let’s bust myth number one around Virgin Atlantic. All the flight attendants aren’t cigarette smoking hot, 20-somepoint year old supermodels. In reality, they’re perhaps marginally more attractive than average trip attendants, but simply perform a little even more to “maintain” their appearance and have confidence, which goes a long means. Don’t obtain me wrong, they were attractive, yet I was happy to view they were actually expert as well. Besides, I really don’t like being fed by supermodels.
About 10 minutes prior to leave time the trip company manager asked all ground personnel to leave the aircraft, advising us of the flight time of 9hr30min. She informed us that tbelow were 292 passengers and 16 crew on the trip too (only 2 Upper Class seats were empty). The safety and security video started to play, which was quirky. I’m all for creative security videos, as it’s the best method to make passengers actually pay attention to what they’re saying.
Here’s the security video:
Despite the weather not being especially nice and tright here being circulation regulate, we pushed earlier early and also began our quick taxi to runmeans 10L. Now, I’m a seasoned traveler through SFO, offered that I affix there probably 50 times a year, yet never have I taken off from runmethod 10L.
Sure enough we were quickly airborne with a bit of disturbance on the climb out, though after about ten minutes the ride smoothed out and the seatbelt sign was turned off.
As we leveled off warm towels were dispersed. Not that it’s surpclimbing given that Virgin Atlantic flies solely longhaul, yet the flight attendants have actually the overnight service dvery own to a “T” in regards to effectiveness.
About 30 minutes into the flight the entertainment system was turned on. It’s beyond me why they can’t rotate it on previously, as many airlines also turn the mechanism on while on the ground. It would certainly be nice to at leastern be able to watch the airdisplay while climbing out. I found the entertainment device controls to be a bit counter intuitive and also slow-moving to respond, so I invested quite a little of time acquiring provided to it.
The trip attendants began establishing up the bar, which is situated behind the Upper Class cabin, which is also where they prepare drinks during the meal organization. The flight attendants came roughly taking beverage orders, and also I went through a Diet Pepsi, which was offered with the option of oresides or snack mix (I went via olives).
Then dinner orders were taken, and passengers were asked whether they wanted to be woken up for breakquick and whether they wanted to make a duty complimentary purchase.
The dinner food selection review as follows:
StartersGrilled chicken take-out style salad via tandoori Caesar dressing
Butternut squash soup through a swirl of spiced crème fraiche
Warm BreadsYour alternative of warmth breads – Pretzel Roll, French pistolet, sourdough or wholewheat roll
Key CoursesSteak and also mushroom pie with maburned potato, green beans and also pear tomatoes
Wild Alaskan whitefish and langoustine lobster via sherry cream sauce and also spinach fettuccini
Cheese filled tortellini pasta with produced pea cream sauce and also a drizzle of chilli oil
DessertSaigon cinnamon cake via crème anglaise
Caramel flan via crème anglaise
And the wine list read as follows:
ChampagneChampagne Pannier Brut Selection nv
WhitePinot Gris 2010 Spinsanti, ArgentinaFalerio 2009 Saladini Pilastri, ItalyChardonnay 2009 Domaine d’Antugnac, France
RedMinervois 2007 L’Ostal Cazes, FrancePinot Noir Coastal Reserve 2010, Clava, ChileChateau Blanquine 2007, Bergerac, France
I ordered the salad and also then pasta, and suggested I wanted to buy an adapter from duty complimentary (because I had loaned mine to my mommy, just to find out that she loaned it to someone else… gar!).
Once meal orders were taken, tablecloths were distributed, adhered to easily by tableware and also bcheck out. I do love the little bit aircraft salt and also pepper shakers! I went via garlic bcheck out and also a pretzel roll.
While I have the right to watch it as being “trendy,” I mean, it cracks me up that they serve “take-out style” chicken salad. Since when is take-out desirable? Anymethod, I felt prefer it actually “operated,” though it cracks me up nonethemuch less.
Anymethod, the chicken salad was fairly good, and I also made a decision on a movie, “Get Him To The Greek,” starring Russell Brand and Jonah Hill.
Once the appetizer was cleared the major course was offered. In this situation I wasn’t a fan. Not only was it tastemuch less, yet it was a small portion (which I’m fine with on an aircraft, given that I have actually a tendency to eat whatever the heck I’m served).
After the primary course I went with the cake for dessert, which more than consisted of for the poor main course.
Given that I had previously heard that the food on Virgin Atlantic is inedible, I was very pleasantly surprised. Not just was the food better than I meant, yet the organization gone beyond my expectations. The flight attendants were genuinely engaging, friendly, and also constantly smiling.
After dinner the cabin lights were dimmed and also I finished up “Get Him To The Greek,” which was pretty funny. The trip attendant came back to finish my duty free purchase, so I provided her my crmodify card and also passport for the £10 adapter. She ceded it around 20 minutes later in a bag, though as I later on discovered out, unfortunately she had offered me the wrong thing (which I blogged around here). Too bad I just uncovered out when I made it to my hotel room in London!
This is most likely a good time to talk a little about the onboard bar, which is situated at the earlier of Upper Class. It’s certainly among those gimmicks that everyone thinks is cool, though I discover it to be rather imhandy for a few factors. First of all, on my flight the exact same three or four world were at the bar for 5 hrs, literally from appropriate after takeoff till even more than halfmethod with the flight. This renders it reasonably difficult to acquire to the lavatories, because people standing at the bar block the aisle bring about the lavatories. They were likewise rather loud, so I would certainly hate to be in the last couple of rows of Upper Class, as they could easily keep anyone up.
The bigger concern, though, is that the bar takes up a disproportionate amount of crew sources. Between dinner and breakrapid the trip attendants alternate in between taking a break and being on duty, and also the 2 Upper Class trip attendants were both manning the bar for practically the entirety time.
When I wanted turndvery own organization I puburned the trip attendant speak to button (given that I couldn’t uncover a trip attendant at that point), and also it went unanswered for five minutes. I pushed it aget and it still went unanswered. So while I don’t blame that entirely on the bar, the crew did seem to be extremely, incredibly busy.
Once the turndvery own service was complete I chose to acquire some shuteye, and also slept for around 4 hrs, till we were about 2 hrs out of London. This can sound insubstantial to some, however for me it’s massively important – Virgin Atlantic has actually individual air nozzles, which is much appreciated, particularly after enduring the “sauna cabins” of some various other European airlines that don’t have actually individual air nozzles.
At that suggest I determined to watch another movie, and also went through “Due Date,” which was laugh out loud funny. I’m still laughing my rear off about the dog in the movie.
About 90 minutes out of London the crew started breakfast service for those that were awake. The breakquick food selection check out as follows:
BreakfastSelection of breakrapid cereals – choose from Cornflakes, Weetabix, Rude Muesli, or Special K
Fresh fruit salad with plain yoghurt
Croissants with butter and your option of jams
Muesli-topped apple muffin
Bacon roll made on soft white bread through ketchup or brown sauce
Scrambled eggs with cream cheese, grilled Irish bacon, banger saconsumption, potato hash brown, button mushrooms and cherry tomato
I went through the fruit salad, a croissant, and also the scrambled eggs minus the meat. I had actually an orange juice through breakrapid. The scrambled eggs were tasty (not runny), the croissant was fresh, as was the fruit.
About 40 minutes out of Heathrow the captain came on the PA for the initially time to advise us that we would be getting here in London around 40 minutes beforehand, and thanked us for flying Virgin Atlantic. As we began our descent the seatbelt sign was turned on, and also it looked prefer a beautiful day in London. The trip attendants came around through arrival develops and “Quick Track” passes for immigration.
Surprisingly enough we didn’t have to enter a holding pattern, though after a smooth touchdvery own we had actually a long taxi to the gate. Upon arrival we deplaned through 1L as the exceptionally friendly crew bid everyone farewell.
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While the immigration line was rather short, it was more than likely a mile walk to gain there. So about 20 minutes after landing I was in the arrivals hall all set to freshen up in the Revivals Lounge.