When i redeemed my British Airways’ Avios points for an Aer Lingus business class ticket to Dublin from Boston, I was excited for my first flight with the Irish airline. I did need to reposition myself from Philly for the flight and luckily found a cheaper USAirways ticket (now AA) and stayed with a friend at the Westin Copley Square for a few days on my first trip to Boston. This was an added bonus to my trip to Dublin and an example of looking for award tickets at airports outside of your hometown airport.
The Aer Lingus Lounge (Boston)
In Boston, the international terminal airport lounges are located a floor below the departure gates. Aer Lingus has it’s own lounge which was quite comfortable and fairly empty during my visit, save the family with twins, one of which just learned how to blow raspberries for almost an hour non-stop. The drinks/snack area was adaquate with a few sandwiches in the refreigerator. As far as airport lounges go, it had strong wi-fi (with password), workstations and plenty of comfortable seating. The only negative was that the bathroom was outside the lounge, down the hall, make a right and continue for a while (i thought i might need to leave breadcrumbs to find my way back).
Aer Lingus Boarding in Boston
I boarded when the business class was called and when i reached my seat (2A), I was quickly welcomed by the flight attendant. I was offered water, juice or champagne (I started with water). The drinks were served in heavy crystal glasses with an etched shamrock (very cute glasses).
Aer Lingus Business Class
I was provided a toiletry kit as well as a free inflight wi-fi access card. Noise canceling headsets were in the seat pouch and a bottle of water in the side pocket (nice touch!). Thankfully, no one was seated next to me on the outbound from Boston so I didn’t need to utilize my ninja yoga moves to climb over anyone to access the bathroom (I would on the return flight when we tried our best not to make eye contact). The business class cabin consists of four rows of 2-2-2 for a total of 24 passengers. The cabin was half full on my flight to Dublin but full on the flight home from Dublin to Boston.
The green business class seat is not lie flat (they are scheduled to roll out in 2015) but an angled seat which I usually find awkward. As is hard for me to get comfortable when I fly (I don’t sleep on flights), I played with the two sets of seat controllers in my attempt to find a happy medium position for the seat. I then deployed a strategy of wrapping myself in a cocoon like state with the warm duvet hoping I wouldn’t slide down the seat. Thankfully, it is a short international flight and with the meals and movies, there isn’t much time to sleep.
Aer Lingus Business Class Meals
The menu on both flights offered a nice selection so I would not need to hit the lounge cookies in my bag. For the flight to Boston, I chose the beef, on the way home, the chicken – I kept it simple. For a carb lover like me, the bread basket was heavenly with many warm, soft options such as tomato/fennel, multi cereal, white and herbs de provence (yes, I did ask for more than one roll!). For dessert, I had a dessert mini tray (I wish more airlines did this) that had two nice sized portions. Overall, I was quite impressed by the meal service, especially as I cleared my plate each time (a rarity).
Aer Lingus Business Class In-Flight Experience
The crew was very attentive during the flight, at no point did I need to flag anyone down for assistance. My wine glass was quickly refilled to the point I had to just say “no” – those little glasses are deceiving! With such a short flight of 6 hours to Dublin (7 hours back to Boston), there were two meal services and yet still time to relax and watch a movie or two.
On the flight home, I used the free wi-fi to listen to my local Philly morning radio show (Preston & Steve on WMMR), it was very cool to live stream my commute without the headache of local traffic. For the most part, the wifi was strong and only cut out once or twice during my flights. What surprised me was how much online time I logged (mostly twitter) vs. my normal read a book to relax and enjoy being disconnected.
Aer Lingus Business Class Verdict
I’m glad that I redeemed my 50,000 British Airways Avios points for the business class flight from Boston to Dublin (the redemption at the time and subject to change). The Aer Lingus crew and ground staff were friendly and attentive which made for a wonderful, stress free journey to/from the Emerald Isle.
NOTE: Aer Lingus has since upgraded their business class product since my flight. This review is reflective of their older configuration of 2-2-2 in their angled seats at the time. I still loved my “old” seat and whole experience.