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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.

  • Jack says:

    Ultimately covid delayed the completion of the suites unfortunately but good to hear they are progressing well . I personally don’t mind the current ying Yang seats I think the club suites are rather gimmicky with a door but just my view . Can’t wait to hopefully one day fly in one on a long haul flight

    • James says:

      But BA had an amazing opportunity to refurb all these planes when they were grounded over covid – now it’s busy and they need to remove them from flying … doh

      • BlueHorizonUK says:

        I think the issue was the manufacturer wasn’t able to make them quickly enough which wasn’t BAs fault.

  • MT says:

    Good to see it finally picking up speed. Been seeing other airlines roll out the same seat family, it felt like BA got some kind of heavily discounted deal where other airlines could jump the queue.

  • Kevin says:

    Great info Rhys. Such a difference between the 2 Club World products. I pay my own fare each trip and I would rather take a short connection and do the long leg in Club Suite then the whole trip in old Club World.

  • Robert Jenkins says:

    I’m planning on a trip to Japan next year, from the brains here is it likely that will be club suite?

  • babyg says:

    bed mode in new club suite is lumpy, plus the new club suite is totally impractical when flying as a family… weirdly unless im travelling alone i prefer the old seat.. that said i spend my avios mostly on Qatar now…

  • Craig says:

    Will the a380s be retrofitted as well??

  • Indy500 says:

    We were down for Club Suite for MIA in April but have now had the flight switched to a A380. Snagged 53A on the upper deck so happy with that. It will be our first 380 flight!

  • Swifty says:

    Hi what is happening to Gatwick planes then? You only mention Heathrow. There are other airports in the south as well! 😉

    • Nick says:

      No current plans to refurbish the LGW fleet. May change in future of course.

      • Thegasman says:

        They were “refreshed” as part of densification of economy cabin I believe? New seat coverings & IFE. Same old CW seat but there’s definitely pros as well as cons with that.

        • Mark says:

          I’ve got a return flight from Doha to LGW in mid-Feb that is showing the Club Suite seat plan – came as a surprise, not sure if it’s just one flight a week as the outbound is in old Club World.

          • Mark says:

            Likely a one-off substitution. BA regularly moves aircraft between Heathrow and Gatwick for operational reasons, e.g. to cover maintenance.

      • Mark says:

        Unlikely. The Gatwick 777 fleet has already been refurbished, in most cases moving to a smaller 32 seat (old) CW cabin and 10 abreast in economy. I’d be surprised if there were any further change to those between now and when they are retired. It was a deliberate decision not to fit CS on those aircraft.

        Three of them are in a four class configuration with First, currently operating routes from Heathrow since BA decided to cease offering first completely from Gatwick. It’s unclear what will happen with those, but they are often used currently on Heathrow leisure routes such as Nassau and Bermuda (and Barbados prior to the peak season). The Nigerian routes also appear regularly (possibly because they still have 14 F seats), and Atlanta for some reason….

        With 9 still unrefurbished, there are currently as many as 12 777s with old CW still operating from Heathrow, although at least one of them currently appears to be out of service.

    • Rob says:

      Nothing …..

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