In this blog, I’m going to share my review on the UA 767-300ER for all three seating classes on 7 hour long international flights across Atlantic. I’ll review the seats, food and the club lounges as well.
The family trip from Boston to London was initially planed for 2020 flying on Lufthansa. Then the pandemic cancelled international travel for 2 years. With all the international travel restrictions starts to ease, and United Airlines added daily direct flight between Boston and London (UA24 & UA25) I booked the round trip for the beginning of the summer vacation.
United uses the 3 classes 767-300ER (Economy, Premium Economy, Business) for this route. As a UA Platinum member, I was able to select 4 seats in the first row of Economy at booking (31A/B, 30D/F) for the round trip. These are all bulkhead seats with extra leg rooms which I plan to use inflated travel foot rest for the overnight flight.
As we got closer to the trip I noticed there were some Premium Economy seats available for upgrade by MileagesPlus point (25K each but on wait list) so I did that upgrade for 30D & F.
Now to the day of travel. United Airlines has a Club Lounge at Boston Logan International Airport Terminal B. I’ve been there many times before, but the food was so so because there isn’t any international flights directly from Boston for UA. But now with the direct flight to London, the food offering got better with flavorful hot entrees than just cold dishes in the past. There are more desert options as well.
As we get ready to board, the two upgrades to Premium Economy got confirmed. The PE seats got 38″ pitch compare to 34″ for Economy Plus and 31″ for Economy, but bulkhead Economy Plus actually has more leg room compare to none bulkhead PE.
Each PE seat gets nicer Saks Fifth Avenue pillow and blacked compare to regular blanket and pillow of Economy. There is also the simple version of amenity kit in a purple bag made by Away (the smart suitcase maker) which you don’t get in Economy. Seats can recline bit more than Economy and leg rest can come up a little to support legs. But I end up not sleeping well because my legs can’t get up to a more comfortable position as I would get at the Economy bulkhead with pillow stool. It’s better for a shorter person like my daughter who had a better sleep overnight. I should have swap seat with my son for sleep.
So my conclusion for PE vs Economy is, if you can get the bulkhead seat in Economy (Plus), don’t bother with PE. But if those seats are not available and you have extra money or points, you may consider PE. Also, that was a 6.5 hour overnight flight for us. You may consider differently if you have a daytime flight or longer flight.
Now for the food. It was a 10PM departure flight, yet UA still wants to serve a late night dinner. Food in PE are served in porcelain containers and metal silverware compare to the plastic wares in economy. I’d say the PE food experiences is the same as the domestic first class flights with meal service. I had the salmon salad and stewed short ribs with potato, the portions were bit big for midnight dinner, but were very tasty. The breakfast packed with protein was very nice too.
After a week in London and Paris, it’s time to come home. Due to the recent chaos at European hub airports due to staff shortage we arrived at London Heather 4 hours before departure at 2PM. We were lucky to get through security and boarder within one hour. The rush hours are in the morning and late afternoon.
I would say the best United Club Lounge (not comparing the Polaris Lounge) is at LHR since it has 10+ direct flights from/to US each day. It’s large with tons of seating. All the hot/cold dishes, pastries and deserts, better than some fancy hotels’ buffet breakfast.
Since the flight back (UA25) was a 7.5 hour afternoon/evening flight, I didn’t bother with upgrades. But I did notice UA oversold the Economy on this flight during check-in, and only one person was on the automatic upgrade list, I was hoping for some lucky bump to PE.
Our single reservation was splitted into 3 on the way over to London due to the upgrades. When we arrived at the gate, I noticed from UA App on my phone two of us got bumped into PE. That’s nice.
I went to the desk to confirm with the gate agent as they were still busy working on moving seats around to fit all the over sold economy. They noticed that there are four of us, and I told them about the splitted reservation. They looked at what’s open (10 open Polaris Business seats), packed PE and oversold Economy, and I was the only Platinum in Economy on that flight, and did the unbelievable thing of bump the whole family into Business Class!!! That upgrade would be >$6,000 if done by cash. HOLY SMOKE! That was AWESOME!!!!
The agent even took the time to make sure we are next to each other (12D, 15A, 16A, 16D).
Of course, the business seats get larger Saks pillow, a gel pillow, thicker blanket and better amenity kit compare to PE inside the mini suitcase made by Away.
I took 15A the window seat which has very good privacy. The footwell is wider compare to some configurations of the Polaris seats on 777. I was able to take an one hour nap in the full flat position and was mostly in half lay down position to watch movies besides eating. The rest of the family enjoyed every minutes of these nice seats.
The food options for the business class were better than PE. Not as fancy as some other Asian/Mid-Eastern/European airlines, but pretty good for US airlines standards.
For the first dinner, I had the halibut, which was surprisingly tender and flavorful. My wife had the slow roasted short-ribs, which she said melts in her mouth, and was better than the short-ribs we had in PE on the flight to London. Kids enjoyed grilled chicken breast. The ice cream with chocolate browny was delicious.
One hour before landing they offered second dinner and we all went for the Wellington Burger as to the other vegetarian dish. I knew Wellington Steak, but a juicy cheese burger wrapped with pastry style bum was heavenly.
This is all I have to share about all 3 classes on UA 767-300ER and the latest on UA’s offerings. I can see the improvements UA is making post pandemic, hope it can get better in the future to compete with none-US carriers.