Flying home upgraded – when international travel is a pleasure

By Eileen Ogintz

Disney guide Torgeir and Kira with 6-year-old Sara Sophia on ride to Oslo
Disney guide Torgeir and Kira with 6-year-old Sara Sophia on ride to Oslo

OSLO, Norway (Day 9 of 9) —

It’s our lucky day! We’ve gotten upgraded to Club World on British Airways.  We’re not sure how it happened but we’re not complaining.

We’re returning home from our week-long tour with Adventures by Disney tour in Norway, which ended with a train ride to Oslo from the Western Fjord region and a farewell dinner at the Grand Hotel, where we say goodbyes to our terrific guides Kire Butler, from Cincinnati, and Torgeir Skjerdal, from Flam, Norway.  We also say bye to our great traveling companion, 6-year-old Sara Sofia Guthmann, from Chicago, who we’ve practically adopted on this trip!

The next day it’s a short hop from Oslo to London and then a mad-rush through Heathrow’s massive Terminal 5 to make our connection to New York’s JFK airport and home.

These days on long flights—like the seven-hour trip from London to New York—I usually spring for premium economy for the extra legroom.

But this was an entirely different experience, at a time when airlines are squeezing coach passengers (to guarantee a particular seat before the 24-hour check in, I had to pay on British Airways).

In Business Class, they couldn’t do enough for the passengers.  There were so many gadgets and buttons in my “pod”—yes my husband and I had a private area with privacy windows and the ability to make our seats into flat beds—that I had to ask how to use them all.

Of course we were offered a drink as soon as we settled in. Of course we were issued comfy quilts.  The sliding tray tables made it easy if I had wanted to work (I didn’t) I was having too much fun deciding which movies and British TV shows I wanted to watch.  Of course there was a designated kids’ channel too.

We were served a three course dinner –filet, chicken or pasta.  And should we get hungry before “tea” was served, there was ice cream, chocolates and cookies in the galley.

What a way to fly!  If only I hadn’t fallen asleep!       

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