Category / Travel

British Airways Ditches Free Meals on Short Haul Flights

British Airways ditches free meals on all its short haul flights.  Here’s a sample menu from their website – they’ve partnered with Marks and Spencer and will be serving food and refreshments in the Euro Traveller and UK Domestic cabins, to and from London Heathrow and Gatwick from January next year.  Replacing the complimentary food and drink service currently offered, you can pay using credit or debit card and if you’re an Executive Club Member, your Avios points.

Chuffed to see Percy Pigs have made it on, sad to say that my favourite G&T will set me back £6.00, sans nuts.

Don’t get too irate, an easyJet sandwich is £4.50 where’s an M&S will cost £3 and a bag of crisps on Ryanair costs £2.16, you’ll get a pack of hand-cooked crisps on BA for a pound.

British Airways Ditches Free Meals on Short Haul Flights
Picture, Courtesy of British Airways

M&S Sample Menu

Fresh food

Classic Fruit Salad £3.10
Yoghurt with Summer Berry Compote and Crunchy Granola – £1.95
Mature Cheddar Cheese Ploughman’s – £3.00
Aberdeen Angus Beef and Red Onion Chutney Bloomer – £4.75
Bacon Roll – £4.75
Mozzarella and Tomato Focaccia – £4.75
Spiced Chicken with Quinoa and Rice – £4.95

Savoury snacks

Oriental Snack Mix – £2.00
Hand Cooked Crisps – £1.00
Nut Assortment – £1.60
Wasabi Peas – £1.60

Something sweet

Percy Pig – £1.85
Gluten Free, Salted Caramel Hazelnut Millionaire Biscuit – £1.45
Chocolate Pretzels and Candy Popcorn – £2.45
Super Nut Fruit and Seed Flapjack – £1.45

Sample Drinks Menu

Hot drinks

Java Republic Coffee – £2.30
Twinings Tea – £2.30
Cadburys Hot Chocolate – £2.70

Cold drinks

Pip Organic Orange & Apple Juice (200ml) – £2.70
Vita Coco Coconut Water (330ml) – £2.70
Folkington’s Elderflower Presse (250ml) – £2.20
Appletiser (275ml) – £1.80
Harrogate Still or Sparkling Water (500ml) – £1.80
Coca-Cola or Diet Coke (330ml) – £1.80

Alcoholic drinks

Spirits (5cl mini bottles) – £4.50
Mixers (150ml mini bottles) – £1.50
Red or white wine (187ml) – £4.50
Prosecco Bottega Gold (200ml) – £6.00
London Pride (330ml) – £4.00
Becks Lager (330ml) – £4.00
Magners Original Cider (330ml) – £4.00

Catering on British Airways’ long-haul flights will remain unchanged with complimentary meals available to all.  In recent years the airline has increased the choice of meals on board, adding the option for customers to pre-pay for an enhanced meal in economy from £15, and to pre-order their complimentary meal in World Traveller Plus (premium economy), Club World (business class) and First to ensure they get their first choice.

Get your short-haul freebies while you can; British Airways ditches free meals from 11 January 2017.

Review Club World Cabin, British Airways, London to Los Angeles

Here’s my review of Club World Cabin food and drink on a British Airways day flight from London to Los Angeles.

British Airways Club World Cabin

Is it just me?  Or, are the meals coming out of British Airways Terminal 5 in London better than those on any return leg.  Am I biased, or have they finally nailed the catering at Heathrow Airport?  For a long-haul flight, I’ll always save the cash to enjoy the benefits of the Club World (Business) Cabin.  I personally don’t think First Class is worth the extra money, you get treated like Royalty in Club World, and I know because I’ve experienced both on more than one occasion.

British Airways Club World: Check Your Seats with SeatGuru

Before you book your seats, always check out specific seating options on SeatGuru.  You’ll need your flight date and airline details, whether you fly with British Airways or not.  A community of flyers add specific details to the site through message boards, and plane configuration helps to let you know if you’ll be near a galley, near a potentially banging door or a bulkhead.

Back to our flight on a BA 747-400 with upstairs seats, in the bubble.  I didn’t get a chance to check these out because they were all booked, but there are plenty of comments on SG.

Our seats on the outbound were very comfortable and my birthday trip began with a glass of champagne before I’d managed to sit down and a chance to catch up with Ronan and his new wife.

Review Club World Cabin

Club World Cabin Review: Champagne

After take off, out came the full bar and my favourite rose Champagne.  The Champagne de Castelnau Brut Rose is an award-winner with a beautiful salmon pink colour.  It’s super dry and smells of red fruits.  Two glasses of this and I was ready for food.  Feet up.  Movie on, even Scarlett approved.

Review Club World Cabin

A morning flight means lunch is served just before noon.  We’d taken advantage of the Lounge, but I didn’t have more than a cup of coffee and browsed through the papers, so it was welcome.

Club World Cabin Review: Menu

With all Club World flights, passengers are given a menu with a full explanation of what’s on offer for the entire trip.  You’re asked what you want for your main course, and there’s usually a selection of four.

The starter was superb.  A sweet pea pannacotta is of restaurant quality, richly sweet and light, but sadly there is only one plate of it.

Review Club World Cabin

I pick the slow-braised Herefordshire beef cheek with a cheese-laden gratin and baby shallots and gingered carrots.  I promise it wasn’t the three glasses of champagne talking.  This is one of the best airline meals I’ve eaten.  Period.

Review Club World Cabin

The dessert isn’t too shabby either I choose the oven-baked vanilla custard on a sweet pastry with cherry jelly.  Superb.  Often these desserts are gelatin-laden, and this has just the right amount of ‘wobble’.

Review Club World Cabin

I swerved the coffee and chocolates and settled down to a film.  My window seat meant that I did have to climb over the passenger’s feet to my right as he decided to have a snooze. It’s a bit of a party trick to try and not bash the extended footrest if you need to use the facilities or fancy a walk around the cabin.

Club World Cabin Review: Afternoon Tea

Next thing I remember the Twinings Tea Room had opened and it was time for Afternoon Tea.

Review Club World Cabin

Antipasti, while an option, is not afternoon tea, so I chose the sandwiches.  Red Leicester and pickle, truffled chicken and coleslaw and the ubiquitous smoked salmon.

Warmed buttermilk plain and fruit scones came with Rodda’s clotted cream (THE best) and Tiptree Strawberry jam.

Review Club World Cabin

I didn’t manage the macaron, Madeira cake or eclair.

Review Club World Cabin

The return food I’m afraid isn’t worth the time it takes to write and post.  Needless to say, the outbound journey entirely made up for it.

What’s your experience of airline food?