British Airways has officially unveiled its first Airbus A350-1000 aircraft, G-XWBA, which arrived at London Heathrow on Saturday 27 July 2019.
This is the first of 18 Airbus A350-1000 aircraft delivered to BA, with the first aircraft not featuring First Class. The aircraft features an entirely new business class cabin, branded the Club Suite, as well as new World Traveller Plus premium economy and World Traveller economy cabins.
As is to expected, the aircraft is fitted with high definition personal on-demand in flight entertainment from Panasonic, at seat power, WiFi, and mood lighting in all cabins.
However, with BA’s parent company IAG keeping a watchful eye on its configuration there are no on board bars or social spaces as passenger density takes priority.
The aircraft will fly on selected flights between London Heathrow and Madrid in August to allow for crew familiarisation. It will begin long-haul operations to Dubai from 2 September 2019. Flight BA107 from Heathrow to Dubai will be operated with the A350 from 2 September, except for 7-8 September and 1 – 7 October 2019. Flight BA106 from Dubai to Heathrow will be operated with the A350 from 3 September, except for 8-9 September and 2-8 October 2019.
The Airbus A350 will then fly to Toronto (flights BA93 & BA92) from 8 October 2019, Tel Aviv from 1 December 2019 (flights BA163 & BA162) and Bengaluru (flights BA119 & BA118) from 1 January 2020. For both Tel Aviv and Bengaluru, the return flights to Heathrow operate with the A350 from the following day.
Here’s the Airbus A350-1000 pictured at London Heathrow today, in far better weather than the day of its arrival!
It is quite an aircraft, notably for its curved wing-tip featuring BA’s Chatham Dockyard flag.
Club Suite – Business Class
The aircraft features BA new Club Suite which provides, for the first time on BA, direct aisle access for every seat with all seats in 1-2-1 configuration, as well as optional privacy for all by way of a door.
The TV monitor is fixed into position meaning all passengers in business class can watch the in-flight entertainment gate to gate for the first time. The seat also features vastly more storage options, particularly at shoulder and arm level, compared to BA’s existing Club World seat.
As per the seat map on ba.com, the Club cabin is split into 11 rows at the front of the aircraft and a 3 row “demi-cabin” between the galley and World Traveller Plus. Had this demi-cabin been at the front of the aircraft, it would be very popular.
World Traveller Plus Premium Economy
The aircraft features a 56 seat World Traveller Plus premium economy cabin across 7 rows in a 2-4-2 configuration. Although, BA has not released specific seat dimensions.
World Traveller Plus has become an increasingly popular cabin in recent years. BA has invested in the cabin through larger configurations and improved amenities. However, it does lose the “demi-cabin” feel it had when it first launched.
World Traveller Economy
The aircraft features 219 World Traveller seats. Again, BA has not given specific seat dimensions.
This is split between 5 rows immediately behind World Traveller Plus and 20 rows at the rear of the aircraft. The vast majority of seats are in a 3-3-3 configuration. However, there are some two seat pairs at the very front and rear rows.