I lost my Virgin-ity!

London Travel Blog

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Virgin's new 789 Dreamliner. It replaced Delta's SEA-LHR route and is BA's only competitor on this city pair

It's like the guilt of cheating on your spouse!

Yes, for over a decade, I've been flying only BA or its oneworld sister AA to London that the thought of flying another airline felt like, well - dishonesty. How could I stray from my beloved BA? Was the marriage truly over, what made me commit to this one night stand with BA's younger and hotter competitor? Was it lust, was it indiscretion, was it poor judgement, or was it the "10 year itch"? I don't know what it was, but I succumbed to temptation, I was going to fly Virgin Atlantic. 

Virgin Atlantic (VS), the brainchild of Sir Richard Branson is 49% owned by Delta. So when Delta decided to take on AA-BA monopoly on the lucrative UK-North American market, he put the VS brand to good use.

I took this shot through the fancy dimmed windows of the dreamliner (this was after I boarded). Felt so odd knowing that I'm going to the UK but not on BA
They did some restructuring and redistributing of their loads which meant that the Delta Seattle-London route was replaced by Virgin, with Delta deploying its metal on Portland-London instead. Virgin Atlantic has been flying to Seattle since Spring 2016 and the route has been a resounding success with "load factors" at over 80%. Given its brand, my mancrush on Sir Branson and wanting to try something new, I was honestly excited! More so than other time I've tried a new airline.

I had some credit card and a whole bunch of other points which I used to buy me an upgrade. It's about knowing when to strike - I got a good deal for the points I spent.

So, on to departure day....

When did SEA-TAC get so darn busy?! Yes, I know it's America's fastest growing city and the crippling infrastructure at the airport says it all.

The Delta Sky Club lounge that Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Australia and Skyteam members can use
The experience is bearable after you're done with security and stuff, but awful in the checkin area. More and more seating areas are being replaced by self service checkin counters, or, actual checkin counters.

Anyway, even though my flight was near 6pm, I left with my parents early on that day as they had to board the LH afternoon departure. I was confident that I could check in well ahead of time (as Virgin Atlantic uses the Delta counters). But, VS now has its own set of counters which don't open 4 hours till departure. So I bid goodbye to my parents, waited (found a seat, finally), got some office work done and kept peering down the hallway to see if the counters opened. Fortunately, they did at 130p. I ran and checked in - I was one of the first! And then proceeded through security check and caught the train to the Intl terminal.

The Delta Sky Club lounge
My parents were boarding their LH flight so I had time to give them one big hug goodbye.

I then made my way to the Delta lounge which is so much better than BA's Terraces lounge in Seattle. Although, I will admit that it's not a very fair comparison as Delta's hub is SEA, not BA's. I tucked into some Beecher mac'n' cheese, coffee and finished a couple of phone calls. Whilst all the beautiful international flights land and depart by 230p, SEA-TAC becomes quite dead in the later part of the afternoon.

I couldn't believe how quickly time had flown. It was nearly 5pm - aka, boarding time. 

By the time I headed downstairs to the gate, boarding was on in full earnest. I was served a welcome drink on entering the plane. We pushed back ahead of schedule thanks to all passengers boarding soon, the pilot gave us kudos on the PA system! The flight was fairly peaceful. And we were going to land on time as well. 

Ils1976 says:
love the read ... wondering what the rest will be! :D
Posted on: Sep 09, 2017
cotton_foam says:
LOL on Paul's comment!!!
Wow what a Lustful use of analogy there, you --- "cheater" ( I quoted it from Paul ok?!). Lol!!
Posted on: Aug 15, 2017
Paulovic says:
You cheater!!! :P ;)
Posted on: Aug 14, 2017
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Virgins new 789 Dreamliner. It re…
Virgin's new 789 Dreamliner. It r…
I took this shot through the fancy…
I took this shot through the fanc…
The Delta Sky Club lounge that Vir…
The Delta Sky Club lounge that Vi…
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge - there …
The Delta Sky Club lounge - there…
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge- I loved…
The Delta Sky Club lounge- I love…
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge
The Delta Sky Club lounge
View from The Delta Sky Club loung…
View from The Delta Sky Club loun…
The Delta Sky Club lounge. The EK …
The Delta Sky Club lounge. The EK…
Our plane pushes back (you can see…
Our plane pushes back (you can se…
Cabin crew distribute first round …
Cabin crew distribute first round…
Cabin crew handing out drinks
Cabin crew handing out drinks
Loved the pod style of VS. That …
Loved the "pod" style of VS. That…
Drinks and crisps
Drinks and crisps
The salt and paper shakers are sha…
The salt and paper shakers are sh…
Appetiser of Tomato soup which was…
Appetiser of Tomato soup which wa…
Main course was some veggie fish…
Main course was some veggie "fish…
I had 2 desserts! Dessert #1 was f…
I had 2 desserts! Dessert #1 was …
Dessert #2 was a cheese platter wi…
Dessert #2 was a cheese platter w…
Boarded the flight, mandatory fir…
Boarded the flight, mandatory "fi…
VS famed purple moodlighting
VS' famed purple moodlighting
Breakfast menu
Breakfast menu
IFE
IFE
Breakfast - croissant, scrambled e…
Breakfast - croissant, scrambled …
London
photo by: ulysses