Trip Report: British Airways (B747-400) First LHR-BOS

The Details

  • Flight: BA213
  • Aircraft: B747-400
  • Class: First
  • Seat: 1A and 1K
  • Route: London Heathrow (LHR)-Boston Logan International (BOS)
  • Distance: 3,259 miles
  • Duration: 7hrs 35min
  • Departure: 11:39AM
  • Arrival: 1:32PM

The Preflight

After spending New Years Eve 2019 in Abu Dhabi with a flight aboard the Etihad Apartments on New Years Day 2020, we decided to spend a day in London before our flight back to the United States.

Ahead of our 11:20AM flight to Boston, my SO and I arrived at LHR Terminal 5 around 8am. We made our way to the First Class check-in area and then through to the dedicated security lane.

First Class Check-in

Passing through the Galleries First Lounge we made our way into the Concorde Room. We decided to have breakfast first and I had an excellent Full English Breakfast. My SO had the pancakes which were good as well (sorry no pictures!).

Full English Breakfast

After the breakfast we found a daybed on the terrace area which had a great view of the tarmac.

Concorde Room Apron View

Still feeling a bit peckish, we both ordered food from the a la carte menu. I had the smoked salmon and my SO had a bowl of granola.

Smoked Salmon and Granola

Boarding was at the B gates which required a quick ride on the train. From exiting the Concorde room to the gate the transit took about 10 minutes.

Our gorgeous 21.4 year old Queen of the Skies, registration G-CIVX, was delivered to British Airways back in 1998.


Next door was a BA B777-200 having some engine issues.


Boarding was a bit chaotic with those with the dreaded SSSS on their boarding passes and their families invited to board first before Group 1.


The Flight

We boarded after standing in the Group 1 lane for about 15 minutes as the gate agents made multiple overhead announcements for passengers with SSSS on their boarding pass.

I was shown to my seat in the nose by one of the First Class crew. I was seated in 1K while my SO was in 1A. These two seats are probably my favorite seats on any airplane, being in the nose of the 747.


The First Class seats are basically glorified reverse herringbone seats. There was 79 inches of pitch and the seats were 22 inches wide.

Two pillows were waiting at the seats. The larger one was very plush and comfortable.


The IFE screen folded out.

IFE Screen

There was a small closet for storage as well as a hanger for jackets.

Coat Hanger

The ottoman area was quite narrow and not comfortable for a wider person to sit in.


The seat was showing some age and the carpet was pretty dirty. There was a 110V outlet on the floor to the right.

Foot Space

There was a chic ambient light lamp at each seat. The IFE control and seat control were on the right.


The handset control was not the best. The green and blue buttons where broken which made playing Tetris impossible.

IFE handset

The ambient light switch and reading light switch were above the seat control dial, and the lumbar and headrest adjustment switches were below the dial.

In addition, there was a USB port, blind control buttons, and headphone jack.


I loved the stylish blinds with blue lighting.

Awaiting us at our seats where a pair of Meridian noise-canceling headphones. They were quite painful after an hour (my ears are big) and I switched back to my own pair of Bose headphones.

There were separate male and female amenity kits. The male kit came in a grey, velvety Temperley bag. It was very well provisioned with Elemis Spa products.

Male Amenity Kit

The cabin crew also came by to handout black Temperley branded pajamas. The male and female tops were different while the bottoms were the same. They were comfy but I miss the BA First logo on the previous PJ sets.

Male Pajamas

The First class cabin had two dedicated lavatories behind the cabin. One lavatory had a window while the other did not. Nothing special about the lavs and they both became dirty by the end of the flight.

Lavatory Window

Once my SO and I were settled in, the cabin crew came by with amenity kits and asked what we would like to drink. I had a glass of Grand Siècle which was served with a ramekin of cold nuts.

Warm towels were distributed.

Next, the menus were distributed. We both had pre-ordered our food online but there was no mention of our pre-orders when the cabin crew came by to ask what we would like.

Lunch Menu
Afternoon Tea Menu
Wine List
Bar Menu

A few minutes later, the customer service manager introduced herself to the first class passengers. We began our push back on time at around 11:20.

We passed by Terminal 3 with the flotilla of American Airlines birds. Within 20 minutes, we were cleared for takeoff.

American Airlines Terminal 3

Unfortunately, the double pane of glass at the windows blocked me from having a good view outside.


About 20 minutes after takeoff, the cabin crew came around with drinks and canapes. My SO had a lovely Lanson Rose.

I stuck with the Grand Siècle. Canapes included blue cheese with pear chutney, grilled prawn with caviar, and air-dried ham. The Shropshire blue cheese was delicious, especially paired with the pear chutney.


We decided to dine together and the cabin crew happily set up our table for two. A warm bread basket was offered.


We both enjoyed the salted butter.


I had the artisan oak-smoked salmon with English crab and sauce gribiche.

Artisan Oak-Smoked Salmon

My SO had the warm truffle linguine which she devoured.

Warm Truffle Linguine

A large bowl of side dishes were also given to us. The Dauphinoise potato was great, the braised red cabbage tender, and the honey-roasted parsnips had a good crunch.


For her main, my SO ordered the pan-fried fillet of halibut. It was covered in a lobster bisque. The halibut itself was cooked well but the lobster bisque was way too salty, even with our dulled taste-buds.

Pan-Fried Halibut

I elected for the seared fillet of Hereford beef. It was served over a delicious carrot puree and topped with caramelized onion. The tarragon jus was flavorful.

Seared Fillet of Hereford Beef

I asked for the beef to be medium rare and it was very well executed. Exceptional job by the cabin crew chef.

Medium Rare

I opted to have a cheese plate afterwards. The selection of cheeses was excellent and I appreciated the variety of crackers.

Cheese Plate

We also shared a delightful chocolate and orange celice topped with almond granola and sugared pistachios.

After the meal service we were offered a selection of chocolates.


I had a black coffee as well.


The cabin crew did not proactively offer to make any beds for the first class passengers. I went back to the galley where the crew was and asked to have our beds made. I noticed that three passengers had fallen asleep with only the flimsy blanket provided at boarding.

The bedding itself was warm and plush.


I watched the air show for a while and managed to get about two hours of sleep.


Afternoon tea was served about 90 minutes prior to landing. Again my SO joined me at my seat. I had another black coffee and we both shared a pot of English Breakfast tea.

Afternoon Tea for two

Warm scones with clotted cream were also served.

Afternoon Tea

There was a cucumber cream cheese sandwich which tasted rather bland. The roast beef with horseradish on malt bread had a strong kick to it. The prawn Marie Rose on a bridge roll was ok as well.

Savory Sandwiches

The patisserie featured a Victoria sandwich, a dry Dundee fruit wedge, and a decadent Chocolate raspberry cremeux.


We were not offered the cold cuts plate and when I asked for it, the cabin crew responded that we would be landing soon and they did not have enough time.

I absolutely loved the scones that were served. The clotted cream was perfect and just the right consistency.


With about 30 minutes to go the cabin crew made preparations for landing. They came through the cabin and collected the pillows and blankets. It was a gorgeous day in Boston and we had some excellent views on our landing.


We landed 1:50PM Boston time and had a short taxi to the arrival gate.

Arrival Gate

On the way to CBP we passed an Emirates A380-800.

Emirates A380-800

Overall, the food was excellent, the champagne top shelf, and the china and glassware elegant. However, I felt that I was inconveniencing the cabin crew when I made requests for drink refills, having our bed made, etc. In the end, this was one of my most memorable flights given that my SO and I were flying in the nose of a B747-400 in seats 1A and 1K.

3 thoughts on “Trip Report: British Airways (B747-400) First LHR-BOS

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