Cape Town – I recently had the opportunity to visit Las Vegas. It’s the perfect holiday destination if you are looking to escape from reality and live the ultimate Hangover movie dream.
The only challenge? Well, Las Vegas is on the other side of the world if you live in South Africa. So far in fact that there’s a 9-hour time difference between the sunny SA and smoking hot Vegas.
That means only one thing. A very long trip, a lot of waiting and some serious travel time. I’ve mastered some serious MacGyver travel hacks in my life. Plus flying long distance when you are prone to sinus infections can sometimes be pure torture.
So imagine my delight when I got the opportunity to fly business class during a recent trip to Sin City.
This is what it’s like to fly business class (Warning: This will change your life forever):
I flew with British Airways’ Club World which is the airline’s long-haul business class cabin. British Airways was the first commercial carrier to introduce fully flat beds in business class in 2001.
Their Club World "cabins" have the unique "yin yang" layout where passengers actually sit facing each other with a screen dividing the seats for privacy. You can choose to leave the screen open if you’re travelling with a friend, partner or family member or simply click a button to escape into your own world.
The Club World suites are very spacious and you can even adapt the area to suit your needs whether you want to sit up straight to work, lay down completely for a nap or just chill in a comfy recline.
The best part? If you travel Club World you get access to the British Airways lounges at airports (including the SLOW Lounges in South Africa) where you can wash up, have complimentary food and drinks, have access to WiFi or even go for a free luxurious spa treatment.
Some perks of flying Club World:
- No queues for checking in to your flight. There are special Club World check-in desks that over a great VIP service from start to finish.
- You also get fast tracked through security at London Heathrow, Gatwick and New York’s JFK.
- You get access to more than 60 British Airways lounges and 90 partner lounges around the world, including the Galleries lounge at Heathrow Terminal 5 and the Terraces lounge at Gatwick.
- Priority boarding! That means you get on the plane first. No pushing, shoving or panicking and there’s more space in the cabin for your carry-on.
- The small things make the biggest impact. Being able to quickly get on and off the flight was a huge perk. No queuing and waiting because of the handy priority boarding pass.
- I liked the privacy of the cabin. It was a real cosy cocoon that I could adjust to my comfort needs.
- From the second you sit down you get handed a glass of champagne and a very personal service experience.
- The seat can go from regular chair to comfy bed with the push of a button. The fact that I could sleep on the plane made my journey so much more comfortable and actually helped me deal with the jet lag.
- The in-flight entertainment offers everything from movies, documentaries to TV shows and my favourite part - complete box sets. I watched the whole Season 2 of The Affair on my way there and back. It's the perfect binge-watching experience.
- The airport lounges with the spa, snacks, drinks, wi-fi and showers was heavenly. Getting time to refresh and put on some clean clothes really makes travelling so much easier.
- After experiencing business class for the first time I can't imagine having to fly any other way in the future.
After flying Club World from Johannesburg to London we got to visit the British Airways headquarters for a tour behind the scenes and even got to try out a flight simulator for a Boeing747- 400. Getting a sneak peek behind the scenes at British Airways was very impressive. The airline is a well-oiled machine with an impressive history. The simulation exercise, used to train pilots and test their skills, is a very real experience and extremely nerve-wrecking. I have to add though...I totally nailed my landing.
Here's a look inside the cabin of a Boeing 747 - 400 (simulator):
Disclaimer: This trip was sponsored by British Airways and MGM Resorts.