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Airplane News / Virgin Atlantic / Boeing 787 Dreamliner / 787 / LHR / LGW / London Travel / 787-9 / Boeing / Boeing 787 / 787 Dreamliner / Dreamliner / → All Tags
After all the hype (and drama) with the introduction of Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner, this summer should see the arrival of another 787 sibling to the family, the 787-9. Like the long-wheelbase version to the existing 787-8, Air New Zealand will be the first to fly it, but Virgin Atlantic is hoping to get their hands on the first few of their order list too.
While the airline hasn’t formally announced launch routes yet, it did brainstorm possible destinations way back when the aircraft order was placed, before being hit with its years of production delays.
So what will it be? In addition to replacing older aircraft for routes in its existing network (we wouldn’t be surprised if it goes head to head with some of the choices British Airways has made), Virgin mentioned routes of London to cities like Bangkok, Melbourne, Rio de Janeiro, Seattle, Toronto, and Vancouver.
Google / Google Street View / Google Maps / Britain Travel / LGW / Travel Technology / Travel Tech / London Travel / → All Tags
It's been only a couple of years since Google Maps made the leap into airports, mapping the inside of - depending on what kind of a day we're having - either our favorite or absolutely least favorite places in the world. Since then the Mountain View kids have not only expanded their airport offerings, but have even gone inside actual airplanes 'waiting' on the tarmac. What's left to do?
Do more and go bigger, obviously. TechCrunch reports that Gatwick Airport has become the newest location to receive Google's 360 degree panoramic Street View treatment. The UK airport - the second busiest in the country - is now apparently open to virtual touring. It only required stitching together 2,000 overlapping photos, matching the results to the airport's actual layout, and uploading everything. Piece of cake.
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Dominic Howard-Jones. The embodiment of BA’s "To Fly, To Serve" slogan
Zany cabin crew might be par for the course these days (if you fly Southwest or Jetblue at least), but it’s not often you get a pilot who gets the whole plane laughing, especially if you’re flying fusty British Airways, right?
A huge exception would be the man, Captain Dominic Howard-Jones, who flew us from Pisa this last week. Or, as he would say, “drove the beast” down to Pisa. From boarding to disembarkation, he kept us entertained (though never irritated), doing the usual piloty announcements with his own personal twist, as if he was actually happy to be leading this flight, rather than going through the motions.
For example, the cabin crew were “gallant staff,” the plane became “the beast,” the co-pilot was “driving us” and, at Pisa, we may as well sit down again because the jetbridge was making “excruciatingly slow progress” towards us.
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Showgirls in their scanties and an open champagne bar aren’t what you’d normally expect at London-Gatwick Airport at 9am on a Monday, but what happens in Vegas came to London this week, as Gatwick came over all Sin City in honor of British Airways’ inaugural LGW-LAS flight, which left on Monday.
Showgirls, Cirque du Soleil-style performers, a pianist and a bar, Oscar’snamed after former mayor and Vegas man about town Oscar Goodmanwere doing their stuff in the check-in hall, while, through security, an Elvis impersonator (attended by two more showgirls) took up residence at Duty-Free. There were speeches from Silla Maizey, BA's Gatwick Managing Director, as well as the Vegas tourist board. There was even a cake cutting ceremony! Unsurprisingly, most people gravitated to the sequins and champagne.
Jaunted Originals / Virgin Atlantic / Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse / Airline Lounges / JFK / EWR / LGW / LHR / SFO / Virgin / First Class Travel / → All Tags
What's that saying? Ah yes, "the best camera is the one you have on you." Since we're never without a camera and hardly ever not traveling, we've managed to capture a serious collection of travel photos in our numerous Photo Galleries.
Here at Jaunted, we devote a lot of enthusiasm to exploring the the premium airline lounges of the world, but time and time again we're asked about what behind the doors of the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouses. Must be the mystique, or you know the fact that their cocktail list is legendary.
Now is as perfect a time as ever to share their interiors with youthe ones we've been inside, at least. That includes the Clubhouses of London-Heathrow, London-Gatwick, San Francisco, Newark-Liberty and the very spicy, very new digs at New York-JFK. Just keep in mind that, coming this October, the Newark lounge reopens with a completely renovated design, with the aim of evoking Manhattan's downtown vibe.
Without further ado:
Airport Restaurants / Airport Dining / Food Travel / AIrports / LGW / PIT / Michael Symon / Jamie Oliver / Celeb Travel / → All Tags
If you’re heading to or through the airport anytime soon you might just want to add a little bit of a layover in order to score a decent meal. Of course we’re always partial to the fast food finds we can’t get at home, but if you’re looking for something more substantial there’s a couple of celebrity chefs looking to earn your hard-earned travel money.
Up first is Jamie Oliver, as the ribbon has been cut on his new restaurant at London-Gatwick just in time to welcome and feed the first Olympic visitors. They'll call the North Terminal of the airport home, and the places will feature both a place to grab an entrée as well as a pre-departure beverage. All in all there’s three different places from which to choose, as Jamie's Italian Bakery, Jamie’s Italian, and Union Jacks Bar are all taking up valuable airport terminal real estate.
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We’re not quite there just yet, but if things keep going as they are then eventually we might just be visiting the airport to grab a good meal. Sure there are still plenty of Sbarro slices and sandwiches from Charlie’s Grilled Subs, but those grab-and-go fast food places are starting to be the exception rather than the norm.
Jamie Oliver is the next celebrity chef to head through the metal detectors, as he and his partners are kicking around the idea of bringing a brand new dining establishment to London’s Gatwick Airport. If everything goes as planned—and we’re thinking that it will—hungry airport travelers could be digging into his delicacies just in time for this year’s Olympic games.
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Not too long ago we were going on and on about the possibility of London building a pretty darn huge airport within the Thames Estuary. Well this is certainly still a possibility, but now that accountants and financiers have started to run the numbers and sort the spreadsheets, the bottom line is getting out of han.
Someone must pay for all the construction costs, costs which would be passed on down to the planes and passengers arriving at the new airport. Landing fees could be as high as £100 per passenger for the new airport—oof—a fact which may make the new airportdespite all its bells and whistlesa pretty hard sell. The thought is that the new airport could cost anywhere between like £50 and £80 billion to build, which is way more than what London-Heathrow is even worth (around £12 billion).
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Some of our recent shots on Instagram
Yo. We already told you last week that we're now on Instagram (username: jaunted), but we thought we'd give you a fair warning that things are about to quadruple in awesome as we prepare for a late winter and spring insanely packed with international travel. That means more awesome, behind-the-scenes travel shots on Instagram from our writers...wherever they may be on this blue globe of ours.
Not only that, but here's a few additional updates we've noticed among the travel brands on Instagram:
Airport Transportation / Airports / LHR / LGW / JFK / CDG / NRT / FCO / Travel Tips / → All Tags
Just because Thanksgiving has passed doesn't mean that travel will dwindle much; Christmas and other holidays are now less than one month away, and of course travel to wherever you're heading for them will start sooner. If you're heading home or on vacation, and you can't convince someone to come pick you up from the airport, we might be able to help.
Throughout December, we'll be adding more guides on how to reach airports around the world via both public and private transportation, but for now, here are six guides we've already got for you:
· London-Gatwick (just the Express train featured)
In-Flight Meals / Flight Reviews / Virgin Atlantic / LGW / LAS / Food Travel / Virgin / Airplane Food / → All Tags
You may remember we told you a little while back about a rather underwhelming experience in Virgin Atlantic's economy class from London to Vegas. Luckily, we're pleased to report the food was much, much better.
First, a bit of background. This member of Jaunted is not a fan of airline foodeven in business class. We were also seriously unimpressed with the meals consumed in premium economy a couple of years back, with the exception of a recent excellent Full English Breakfast. Alas, we still didn't have much hope for economy.
But what do you know...for economy, it was actually very decent.
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Heading to the UK this Wednesday, November 30? Bring a book, a snack and loads of patience because for the second time this year, the UK Borders and Customs employees who stamp your passports will be on strike.
The last strike by the PCS Union was exactly five months ago, on June 30, and we just happened to fly into London-Heathrow and get stuck in the middle of it (and the line's 17 switchbacks). Although Heathrow had obviously prepared well by handing out both bottled water and kid activity packs, the nightmare of standing for nearly three hours in the most boring, bureaucratic environment ever still happened. Just listen for your flight crew to warn you about "industrial action," as our Virgin Atlantic FAs did, just to make sure we were aware what exactly was the holdup.