Friday, August 10, 2007

Trip Report - ORD-LHR on United 777

My trip started in Seattle. After finding out my Seattle-Chicago flight was delayed (causing me to mis-connect on my London flight) I went to the Sea-Tac airport to try and standby for an earlier flight to ORD.

Upon getting to the First Class ticket counter, I was met by one of the most UNhelpful United Agents I have ever met. He was very un-sympathetic to my mis-connect issue. And told me I was unlikely to get out of Seattle early. Considering I am a Premier Exec, traveling on a Business Class ticket I was amazed at his poor attitude.

To make a long story short, I got the last seat from Seattle to Chicago on an earlier flight.

I arrived in Chicago to a sea of people, many who were standing in a VERY long line for Customer Service. I should have known not to fly via ORD during the summer -- on a Sunday.

In any case, I went to the Red Carpet Club on Concourse C. Its a pretty basic lounge, somewhat new furniture -- but it was a mess, with empty drinks and trash all over the place.

I found a good place to work -- they have converted the old Smoking Room into a "quiet room". It was very nice and only a few people even ventured into it -- even though the rest of the Club was fairly busy.




My London flight was right next door at C16. The flight was fairly busy and Business Class had only a couple seats open. Luckily there were a couple seats open, because THREE people had issues with their seats (ie. foot rest not working, audio not working, etc).

I was seated in 15A, which was nice since there was no one behind me -- only a bulkhead wall.

The seat was ok, but its very tight when everyone fully reclines and you are stuck on the window seat. My video screen, and seat adjustments worked fine.

The service on United was ok, but overall it was uninspired. The flight attendants were pleasant, but you had the feeling they were rushing through the service so they could take their break. In addition, my flight attendant referred to the wine choices as Chardonnay, The French "White" or one of the red ones.

The new business class seats can not come soon enough -- it will be a major upgrade to the dated business class experience on United today.

One tip for getting to London from LHR -- the Heathrow Express train now has a competing option if you are not in a hurry. The Heathrow Connect service is less than half the price (6.50 pounds) but it takes 30 mins and runs less frequently. The best part is it arrives at Paddington Station, right next to the Heathrow Express trains.

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