British Airways are removing their last Airbus A318 from service. That means the end of the private jet like all business class service from London City to New York via Shannon.
This exclusive flight featured 32 Club World seats, using the old Concorde flight numbers, BA1, BA2, BA3 and BA4. For me, I found it the closest to what I imagine flying would have been like on the world’s first jet, the de Havilland Comet 1 back in 1952.
Memories of the British Airways Babybus
Thanks to sale fare, the British Airways babybus (the nickname for the Airbus A318 used on the service by frequent flyers) was the same price as the regular flights out of London Heathrow. I posted on Facebook pondering whether I should take the London City service or flights from Heathrow.
A crew member I know suggested I take the London City service and I took his advice. As he said, “You never know how long it might last” and so I took the plunge. For something a little over £1,100 return, it was a no brainer.
Flight day saw me relaxing in the gate lounge, chatting to other frequent flyers joining the flight. Boarding took no time, up the stairs and you’re on board. For me, I scored 1A and had no-one beside me in 1B, which was lovely. Luckily I documented the entire experience in a detailed flight review, so I won’t forget it.
Canapes and Champagne on the flight to Shannon, then you get off, go through US immigration pre-clearance and then it’s off to New York. Lunch, afternoon tea, a movie and a whole lot of drinking and chatting to others on board. A real party flight! I adored it. The overnight return flight was just as good.
Flying the British Airways babybus was some experience. It had slow Wi-Fi and of course seats arranged two by two so you had a good chance of having a neighbour. However the Gatwick based cabin crew clearly loved their jobs, the Captain was a lady, and all round it was memorable.
The removal of the service begs the question as to what will happen with the former Concorde flight numbers now. Will there be some kind of special service or will they be allocated to standard flights? I guess we have to wait and see.
Did you ever get to experience the British Airways babybus? What are your memories of the service and are you sad to see it go? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.