Evelop to fly London Gatwick to New York for British Airways – without fully flat business class

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Whilst British Airways continues to struggle with engine issues on its Boeing 787 fleet, it has chartered an A330 from Spanish airline Evelop to operate the Gatwick to New York flight.

It will cover flights between 27th October and 12th January.

It appears to be an ex-Singapore Airlines regional aircraft.  This aircraft does NOT have flat beds in business class – they are the ‘slope at an angle to the floor’ variety, which most airlines got rid of years ago.

Evelop operating New York flights for British Airways

British Airways is allowing anyone booked onto this service to switch, free of charge, to any British Airways-operated service from New York to Heathrow.  If you are on the day flight outbound then the 2 x 2 x 2 seating should be OK, especially if you are travelling with a partner and so don’t mind being directly next to someone.

If you are on the overnight return, I would be tempted to switch.  If you are smart, of course, you will try to switch to an A350 (although none are currently scheduled on JFK) or Boeing 777 service with Club Suite!

There is a photo below so you can make up your own mind.

There is also no Premium Economy on this Evelop aircraft, so those passengers will need to move to a Heathrow service or accept a downgrade to Economy.  Economy passengers can also switch to a BA service if they prefer.

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  1. OT – not sure how much apetite there will be for this, but I’m looking for inspiration and advice re Easter family holiday. It will be first time we have travelled abroad with our two children who will be aged 5 and 3 by the time we go.

    I’m looking to do it as far as possible by redeeming points / miles. The current ‘household’ balances are roughly as follows:
    – 200k in Amex points
    – 180k in Virgin miles
    – 90k Avois
    – 90k IHG points
    – 55k Bonvoy points
    – £100 in Tesco vouchers which could go to Avios or Virgin
    – £200 in a certain affiliate link site which could go to Avios

    Local airport is BHX but MAN and LHR are accessible easily enough – will happily pay for flights if need be. I have the usual hotel statuses with Amex Plat and am about to tip over to IHG Spire through card spend.

    Suspect the preference will be for european short haul as opposed to long haul given that its the first time the kids will have been on a flight. To this end I’ve been looking at Conrad Algarve and Pine Cliffs but wonder if there is anything better?


    • You got a good stash there but unless you earns 250k+ a year you aren’t going to be able to make loads of longhaul trips, and of course the fees are £2k for 4. So I wouldn’t suggest you do a longhaul until you can utilise two Amex 241s.

      Do you want to take them to Disney World. We took ours at 4 & 1 and it was great for the 4yo in particular. But if you want to do that, you should be planning for 2021 (availability and 241s)?

      I always find Europe tricky at Easter. You’d need a heated pool and the sea will be too cold so it feels a bit of a waste. Canaries are warmer of course. Typically we tend to wait until May half-term or we do a trip in Northern Europe: city, theme parks, Centerparcs (not comparable to Conrad but if they like swimming/slides!).

    • When our twins were 18 months we went to Japan, and it was absolutely amazing! our kids were already used to travel because before that they were in many European break, but the only issue we had was really only 2/3 nights of jet leg.
      In Japan you can organise everything in advance and there are many things interesting for them
      Without a 2for1 voucher you maybe can only get return tickets in economy, but a direct flights is a must for me with kids and even economy flight with Ba are 7/800£ So you will still get a good value for your Avios. Then Bonvoy and IHG can help you to keep hotel cost down.
      Portugal in easter can still be a bit chilly, while Japan will be already warm and you can maybe also see the cherry blossom
      I’m sure you will get different point of view about this, but I thought to share!!!

    • TGLoyalty says:

      its not really a 25% bonus as you can withdraw today for 16% off your local boozer or next meal out (dining out card) I’m not a buyer at those prices just withdraw as soon as it becomes payable.

    • Scallder says:

      We had a week at the Westin Costa Navarino in Greece (mainland) which was great with our 2 year old. They have a large splash park and also a nursery (surcharge) which is great if the two of you want some time to yourselves!

      Unfortunately it seems you’d be slightly too early for BA’s direct flight to Kalamata (which is 45 mins away) so it’s a 3 hrs 15 drive from Athens airport.

      We booked a standard room on points and got what turned out to be a 9 level room upgrade to a 1 bedroom suite with an Infinity pool and I’ve got Gold Bonvoy status through the Platinum card.

      As an alternative, i’d suggest looking at Club Robinson – it’s a German/Italian brand that have a number of resorts across the Med and is an all-inclusive with a full kids club program and huge number of activities all in the price. Not available on points unfortunately, but it can be booked through Hotels.com meaning you get some rebate on your outlay. Can then do the flights on points. We’ve booked for their Puglia resort for a week next year.

    • Great. Thanks for all the suggestions. I’d love things like Disney and Japan with the kids but not until they are old enough to remember how lucky they are!

    • We’re currently at the Malta Westin with a 5yr old & 2.5 year old… using a travel certificate but I think it’s 30-40k Bonvoy/night which you should be able to get sufficient with your Amex points… hotel is decent, the town within walking distance is probably not the ideal style, but lots of nice villages within a short drive.

      Standard redemptions include 2 queen beds, I asked for an upgrade at check in – unfortunately suites aren’t an option without paying €1000/night… but they did find a Jr Suite which is working well for us.

    • Genghis says:

      I recommend you use that £200 quickly. It has a habit of disappearing.

      • I have £100 pending from Feb and was hoping this would become active soon, its from LI. Any pointers to how much longer it will take?

  2. Anyone that’s been downgraded from WT+, give BA a call and they will upgrade you to club world (space available).

    • Jonathan says:

      Will they? Never heard of them doing this before so can only assume there was a specific reason ie. Business empty & not enough space in Economy to accomodate WT+.

      • This happened to me. I had been downgraded to economy and got the standard email offering to move to another service from Heathrow.

        When I rang to do just that they instead offered to upgrade me to club world. This was an offer from the agent not something I asked for.

        Fwiw I’m only a lowly bronze this year, so I don’t think I have received any special favours.

  3. OT — I’m considering using the Virgin two-for-one voucher next summer for a LAX–LHR round-trip. I have no Virgin status so it will only be economy, but is it possible to ring up and ask Virgin to book this as two separate legs rather than a return and still use the two-for-one? I’ll save a couple of hundred dollars on taxes/charges if I can do that.

  4. Chris L says:

    OT Flybe news – they now have a 737 simulator. I wonder why?

    • That’s not happening! There were rumours over A220s but the new CEO was not in a hurry when I saw him last week to buy anything.

  5. OT – balance transfers, hopefully the finance experts on here can help. If you transfer a balance to a another credit card, are purchases on that card then charged interest, even if the purchase element of the statement balance is paid in full each month? Just looking at Lloyds and IHG MCs and this appears to be the case, which begs the question why would anyone use them?

    • Shoestring says:

      it all depends on the card

      for example, you can get a Sainsburys Purchases card where purchases up to your limit are interest free for about 30 months

      the same card allows BTs – you pay a small % fee (3%?) for the BTs – but then they are interest free as well for your 30 months, ie are considered as part of your interest free limit

      • Shoestring says:

        sounds like it’s down to 25 months these days

        • Just applied for that card last night.
          Does anyone know if you can use it with Curve at ATM’s without any fee and it will be 0% for the 25months?
          Wasn’t my initial plan so doesn’t matter but would allow me to keep hold of savings untill 0% interest runs out.

          • Shoestring says:

            worth considering that whilst we (the points people!) are generally concerned about getting 1% or better on points/ spend – then using said points to get a better outcome

            eg Tesco—>Clubcard—>Avios—>saving vs cash price of ticket
            BAPP (& Avios)—>2-4-1—>saving vs 2x tickets

            the purchases cards/ B/T/ stoozing people can be regularly turning in results such as 3%

    • I could be mistaken, but I think new rules have been introduced so that the highest cost elements of the balance get paid first… I currently have a 0% BT on my Hilton card for example… If I spend on it, I pay that amount back and the BT element remains the same. If I don’t then I make sure to pay at least the minimum amount and the BT reduces

    • Charlieface says:

      I think some of the cards have been getting around recent regulations on most-expensive-balance-first by only paying off transactions on existing statements, not current un-statemented balances. So in those cases only pay off purchases after the statement is generated each month.

    • In my experience if you have a balance transfer on a card then you lose the interest free period on other purchases as you’re not paying the balance due each month. What you would need to do if you buy anything on the card is wait for the purchase to show on the card then pay it off the same day to avoid paying interest.

      Any payment made should pay off the part of the balance that accrues the most interest first however

  6. Prins Polo says:

    Selling what is effectively premium economy as business class is just dishonest behavior by BA.

    The booking process mentions the LGW flight is operated by Evelop but suggests this is just regular Club World. How is an average traveler supposed to know he’s paying for flat-bed business class on his transatlantic trip but getting the same thing as Norwegian’s premium economy on this route over the past couple of months.

  7. Just flew back JFK-LGW in the Evelop business. Wasn’t sure what to expect after some negative reviews however I could not find fault with the journey back. The crew were marvelous, nothing was too much trouble. It was club BA catering and white company bedding etc. OK so the seat wasn’t complete flat but after an express dinner I slept very comfortably until woken for breakfast.

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