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British Airways Boeing 787-8 fleet getting Club Suite – Autumn flights showing at ba.com

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The British Airways Boeing 787-8 fleet will be the next to get its latest business class seat as the Club Suite rollout progresses.

Some beady-eyed FlyerTalkers spotted the changes on flights to Baltimore and Montreal for later this year. The seat maps are showing a 1-2-1 layout, which would indicate a Club Suite refurbishment, and British Airways has confirmed the move to us.

Club Suite is BA’s new business class seat, first unveiled in 2019 on the brand new A350s. It is a big step up from the now dated yin-yang layout first introduced in 2006. Our full guide to Club Suite is here.

British Airways 787 Club Suite

British Airways is installing Club Suite on Boeing 787-8 Dreamliners

The Boeing 787-8 is the smallest variant in the Dreamliner family, and a whole 11 metres shorter than the 787-10, the largest variant.

BA uses its 787-8 for long, low volume, routes, predominantly to the United States. It is also often the aircraft that British Airways uses to launch new routes such as Cincinnati, which is new this year.

According to Cirium, British Airways currently has 787-8s scheduled to fly to the following destinations this summer:

  • Baltimore
  • Boston
  • Buenos Aires
  • Chennai
  • Cincinnati
  • Delhi
  • Hyderabad
  • Islamabad
  • Montreal
  • Nashville
  • New Orleans
  • Pittsburgh
  • Rio de Janeiro
  • San Jose (California)
  • Toronto

Looking at the new seat map for the Club Suite refurbished 787-8 aircraft, British Airways is reducing the overall seat count in favour of installing additional premium capacity:

  • 31 in Club World (business class) – down from 35
  • 37 in World Traveller Plus (premium economy) – up from 25
  • 136 in World Traveller (economy) – down from 154

As before, the 787-8s do not feature a first class cabin.

It is not entirely surprising to see the business class cabin shrink by three seats, as Club Suite is marginally less dense than the old yin-yang style seat. It also makes sense to bump up the premium economy cabin as this is usually the most over-booked cabin on British Airways flights, and indeed the most profitable across many airlines.

British Airways Club Suite

How long will the Boeing 787-8 Club Suite refurbishment take?

BA has 12 Boeing 787-8s in its fleet. At current rates, it would take just under a year for those aircraft to be refurbished, although I’ve been told that we can expect a significant ramp-up of Club Suite seat deliveries this year as supply chain issues start to resolve themselves.

That said, British Airways has fallen short of refitting the entire Heathrow based fleet of Boeing 777s in 2022, which it committed to at the end of 2021. As of right now, there are nine aircraft still awaiting their makeover.

With that in mind, I thought I’d recap where we stand with BA’s Club Suite refurbishment program.

British Airways Club Suite

How many aircraft have Club Suite now?

Here are the latest fleet numbers as of January 2023, courtesy of travel and data analytics expert Cirium and Flyertalk.

British Airways currently has 53 long haul aircraft with the new Club Suite cabin:

  • 13 brand new A350s delivered between 2019 and 2021
  • 5 brand new 787-10s delivered last year
  • 25 777-200ERs that have been refitted
  • 10 777-300s (which also feature the new First Suite)

This equates to 51% (53 of 104) total long haul aircraft that currently have Club Suite installed, which is an improvement from 36% in October 2021. It also includes a number of new A350 and 787-10 deliveries, which have helped to increase the Heathrow fleet size from 97 to 104 aircraft.

Still outstanding is the 787-8 fleet (12 aircraft), the 787-9 fleet (18 aircraft), the A380 fleet (12 aircraft) and the remaining nine 777s.

How do I know if my flight features Club Suite?

By far the easiest way of checking whether you are in Club Suite is by checking the seat map on ba.com.

If the Club cabin is in a 1-2-1 layout like the image below then it is currently scheduled to have Club Suite.

All flights operated by an A350 or 787-10 are guaranteed to have Club Suite. Your chances are also extremely high if you are on a Boeing 777 from Heathrow, as almost 80% of the fleet has now been refurbished.

If you want to find out more about Club Suite, and why it is a big upgrade over the old seat, you can read our British Airways Club Suite guide here.


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Comments (75)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Lou says:

    Does that mean there’s a chance we’ll be flying in club suite to Tokyo in November?! I hope so!

    • Graham says:

      I believe BA are using the 787-9 fleet for Tokyo, so probably not.

      • Frank says:

        BA 5 on the 9th Nov is showing as an -8.. I checked the seatmap, but sadly still jingjang layout….

  • 1958 says:

    I have booked Singapore in December 2023 – still showing as “Yin/Yang”, unfortunately, as is Sydney for the same month.
    Changing Sydney from the current Club Suite to old Club World seems a retrograde move.

    • Matt says:

      I’m in a similar position, albeit flying to Sydney in April. I was hoping that BA would see sense and swap the aircraft for a 777 or newer 787 with Club Suite, but I might need to temper my expectations at this stage…

      • Harry T says:

        You book business class, not club suite. There’s never any guarantee. BA are pretty bad on long haul anyway these days, regardless of the seat.

        • Matt says:

          True, but there was a lot of press coverage when they switched the Kangaroo route to Club Suite, many customers will see it as ‘bait and switch’ regardless of the fare conditions and seat layout at time of booking.

        • Russell G says:

          I find I have more issues with the other passengers in business than I do with BAs staff or product. I don’t know why but they always seem more arrogant and self entitled than other people on the plane (I don’t see this anywhere near as much in First). Maybe it’s just me though as I see similar attitudes at top end hotels and restaurants too. I commend anyone that works in the service sector these days, especially BA flight attendants, they have to put up with a lot of bad behaviour all with a smile and grace.

    • Harry T says:

      I wouldn’t worry about equipment allocation for nearly 12 months time tbh.

    • Rhys says:

      777s are currently operating Sydney flights through the Winter season, so I imagine they’ll be back next Winter. Not clear whether they will operate during the summer though – I’m hoping they do, but at the moment my flight in April is still showing 787-9

    • Chris says:

      Singapore/ Sydney is on the 787-9 which doesn’t sound like is in line for the seat swap right now.

    • rashomon says:

      Hi @1958

      I’m flying BA011 to SIN in Aug – this flight now is using the 777.

      Based on some dummy bookings this switch happens for BA011 from 26th March till 29th October … and then flips back to the 787 later in the year.

  • Claire says:

    Question re new 2 for 1 voucher. It looks like I may have 2 in my account when I want to book 3 seats in august for next year. Will I be able to book all 3 of us on one booking ie 1 x 2 for 1 and 1 x half number of avios. Thanks

    • Harry T says:

      No. The person who earned the voucher must travel on the booking made with the voucher, and you can’t combine two vouchers on one booking, as far as I’m aware.

      • Claire says:

        OK I thought before the change you could use 2 vouchers of the old style if you wanted to book 4 tickets (before this improvement which allows 3 people to travel and make use of the 2nd voucher for half avios). Both vouchers will be in my name. It’s easier if one booking and the avios are in a household account which includes my daughter and my husband. Just wondered if anyone had tried to do this yet.

        • OP says:

          I was allowed to do this, where both vouchers were in my name and all three other travelers were in my household account. Two bookings were made, two reference numbers, but the agent was able to do it over the phone.

    • Yuff says:

      You can book up to 4 seats, on one voucher, but you only get 1 free avios seat.
      If you use both vouchers I suspect you’ll get the 3 seats for half the required avios

  • tony says:

    That “ying-yang” seat layout was introduced far earlier than 2006.

    • Bob Bilby says:

      the last version of club was indeed 2006, there was the first lie flat version operating 6 years before with that dreadful fan separating the seats.

      • John says:

        It wasn’t dreadful in 2000! It was best business class seat in the world IMO.

        I stopped flying BA many years ago, but actually prefer the 2000 seat over the 2006 version with 30% of the “bed” comprising a flimsy footrest

  • Evie says:

    I do not like the old style Business Class seats . Pre 2020 I used my 2 for 1 vouchers to fly First Class which was a treat. I am no longer able to find any First Avios seats to Tokyo/ Singapore/Sydney. Have BA stopped First Class redemptions?

    • Harry T says:

      No but you’ll be lucky to find them. There’s no guaranteed First Avios availability on any flight and they have reduced the number of aircraft in their fleet with a F cabin.

    • elt says:

      There is no 1st class to Tokyo

    • Ronster says:

      Good evening Evie

      I hope everyone is well.

      This is what I am hoping will return

      Although BA is fling 787-9’s to Tokyo which have F seating, they just do not offer the service.

      You can see this by doing a quick search, cross referencing the aircraft on Google flights on the date your looking at and then doing a search on seat guru.

      I would have thought with Tokyo having opened up, there would be plenty of takers for F.

      If you are flying from LHR and prefer first then only JAL offer it. If your lucky and find availability this works out at around 125,000 avios +additional charges, per person per leg.

  • Alec says:

    Doesn’t the overall seat count stay the same at 214? Reduced economy

  • Chrisasaurus says:

    Might want to brush up on the maths Rhys, 214 overall seats is not down on the previous 214 overall seats

  • Richie says:

    BTW B781 G-ZBLG arrived this year.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

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