British Airways, World Traveller Plus

THE FLIGHT: Flight BA015 from London Heathrow Terminal 5 to Singapore, departing on time at 9.45pm on Christmas Day and operated by a B777. I was flying in British Airways’ World Traveller Plus cabin.

THE PRE-BOARDING: While the chaos caused by drones at Gatwick pre-occupied the media, Heathrow T5 was full of festive spirit, decorations and cheery staff. Check-in was quick and easy.

THE SERVICE: Crew were warm and welcoming and were all entering into the spirit of the day with reindeer antlers or Santa hats and tinsel. Sparkling wine was offered promptly as a welcome, and festive food choices were advised on a special menu card. Drinks and pretzels were served within the hour with generous ‘well as it’s Christmas’ double G&Ts and two mini wine bottles with dinner. Dinner was served within two hours with our ebullient stewardess admitting her trolley was a bit like Santa’s sack – full of surprises. There didn’t seem to be any chicken stir-fry as per the menu but there was another chicken option, beef stroganoff or a Christmas dinner option. I went for the turkey. It was good – plenty of thick slices of meat, roast potatoes, parsnips, plenty of gravy, a couple of sprouts and chestnut stuffing, followed by mince pie and cream. The red cabbage salad and cheese and biscuits completed the offer. Two hours prior to landing a full English breakfast or omlette along with pastries and juice was served.

THE SEAT: Seat 24E was an aisle seat in a row of four with rows of two on each window side. The seat recline was stiff and hard to operate but the recline was good and the leg space ample. I was given an excellent noise-cancelling headset and there was a good selection of inflight entertainment. The in-arm tables mean the arm can’t be lifted which made it hard for middle seat passengers to get out. A small amenity kit included socks, toothbrush and eye mask. There was a good fleece blanket and pillow provided.

THE VERDICT: The premium economy seat was comfortable and my meal was good but the stand out feature was the staff. Great service from a crew that were upbeat and full of Christmas spirit.

THE DETAILS: British Airways operates two direct flights a day from London Heathrow to Singapore. Return prices start at £1,144 including all taxes. See: britishairways.com.

Reviewed by Julie Baxter (2019)