UK Posts

Spending a Heathrow Layover in Windsor

I spend enough time of my life in airports.  As lovely as the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse is, we couldn't justify spending the entire day there. We debated going into London proper, but with each of us having been there multiple times, we instead opted to head in the other direction, to Windsor. ...

Virgin Atlantic Upper Class on the A330 from Chicago to London

While counting down the days to this trip, I was irrationally excited for the legs on Virgin Atlantic.  It has been a trendy carrier for a long time, and they definitely have good marketing to build up their brand. Of course having Sir Richard Branson as founder and face of the brand certainly ...

Amenity Kit Review: Virgin Atlantic Upper Class

This amenity kit review is based on what I received on from my flights on Virgin Atlantic in Upper Class, their business class product.  I flew from Chicago to London then onward to Dubai.  For our introductory post and description of the categories, and the 5 point rating scale, please ...

Exploring Liverpool

The main reason for my trip to Europe was to attend a English Premier League match at Anfield, the home of Liverpool Football Club.  I've visited Liverpool before, but never attended a football match there.  I'm a fan of most sports, and love attending live events, but I've really started ...
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Hilton London Tower Bridge - A Review - Great London Hotel and VIP benefits!

 I get to London a lot and I’m always searching for the best hotel for the money. As a Hilton Diamond, I look for a hotel that will provide the best benefits. On my latest trip I gave the Hilton London Tower Bridge a try, and I was impressed, it is a very modern, well run hotel with great ...

Source: Virgin Atlantic to join Star Alliance

I’m told by a source at Star Alliance; Virgin Atlantic will be joining “very soon”. Again this is just leaked information. Richard Branson hinted that Virgin will be joining a global alliance soon. Star is the one that would not be a big surprise as Singapore airlines a Star ...

Going with your gut is the best policy when traveling.

I just returned home to the UK from a long weekend in the states. As a UA guy I booked Manchester (MAN) - Frankfurt (FRA) - Washing Dulles (IAD) round trip. Sure this is now a UA non-stop from MAN-IAD operated by B757 but upgrades are never opened in-advance on that flight. I was able to use my ...
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St Pancras Renaissance Hotel – London (A Marriott Property)

Overview: An acceptable mid-range hotel in London
Strengths: Iconic public areas, size of rooms
Drawbacks: A few service lapses (though nothing major), rooms uninspired
Unlike my last visit to London, for my most recent trip, I had the benefit of a bit of advanced planning. I carefully ...

The Guoman Tower Hotel – London

Overview:  A moderately priced hotel, best for short stays
Strengths:  View of the Tower Bridge, price
Drawbacks:  Location (relative to business locations), quality of rooms, quality of food offerings
A last minute business trip brought me to London for several days last ...

Hyatt Regency London “The Churchill”

I have been a Hyatt fan for a long time and I have always heard good things about the Hyatt Regency in London. My trips to London have been for business and the rates at the Hyatt were always out of what I could spend so I would pick the Hilton London Tower Bridge or Hilton Paddington; both very ...

Heathrow Express

I wrote earlier this autumn about Seattle’s fairly new light rail system.  At the other end of the spectrum in airport rail-based mass transit is the Heathrow Express.  Whereas Seattle’s service is highly subsidized, and also used for local transit, the Heathrow Express (HEX) ...

British Airways Arrivals at London Heathrow (LHR)

New York to London is one of the most heavily traveled international business routes in the world.  There are over 20 services daily on this route – BA alone operates eight each day.  Their oneworld partner, American, runs several more each day.
For many business travelers from ...

Not the best day to arrive at Heathrow?

Uh oh.  My current schedule has me landing at LHR Wednesday morning.  It appears that could be trouble...arriving during a labor (labour?) action by a number of UK unions, including the border officers.

BAA (the privately owned airport operator) has publicly written to all the carriers advising of 12 hour queues and are asking carriers to run flights at 50% loads.  Their letter is here.  Not good.

Barring the action getting called off, I think I may call off my trip!

Next week: Heading to London

Next week, I'm heading to London for a few days.  Though I've stopped over there enroute to the Gulf, I realized tonight that haven't been into the City there since 2007.  Pushing 5 years since my last will be interesting to see what has changed!

Unfortunately for me (though fortunately for my company's shareholders), Delta had a cut-rate business class fare available - roughly $1,000 lower than our negotiated fare on BA - so Delta will be my carrier this time.  Their 767-400 equipment on the route has the staggered lie-flat seats at least.  This will be my first time in that configuration - so if not BA, at least something new!

I will share my thoughts on the flights and my hotel upon my return.

Update on Chase BA Visa Card 100k Deal

I signed up for this deal when it was offered back in May of this year.  I'm pleased to say everything has gone exactly to plan.  I received the first 50k roughly on my first statement date, and I received the second 50k with my second statement, when I reached the spending threshold.  The ...

American Airlines Expands 5 Star Service

(Updated October 2011)
American has expanded where it offers Five Star service to nine domestic cities and five overseas.  The mystery surrounding Five Star is now gone, and almost of the details of the service, including how to book, are published on
The service is not ...