St Patrick’s Day battle video: Aer Lingus business class versus economy

Mar 17, 2022

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What better way to celebrate St Patrick’s Day with a classic TPG UK two-cabin comparison YouTube video on board Ireland’s flag carrier?

The London to Dublin route is incredibly popular, with as many as 40 daily flights between the two cities. However, the experiences on these different flights vary greatly.

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From the ultra-low-cost Ryanair, to the Avios collector’s favorite, British Airways, you’ll find a huge variety in pricing and service.

What you might not expect, however, is the variety of aircraft types that ply this route. Enter Aer Lingus. Alongside the usual short-haul products, Aer Lingus regularly flies an Airbus A321neo with an incredibly comfortable lie-flat seat that can be seen on routes to the U.S. They also fly a wide-body Airbus A330-300. With a flight time of as little as 45 minutes, it’s rare to find such a large aircraft on such a short route, and so we put this A330 experience to the test.

Related: Flight review: Aer Lingus business class on the A321neo, Dublin to Philadelphia

I drew the short straw, with a ticket for the economy cabin, while Liam Spencer bought an “AerSpace” ticket, allowing him to turn left and enjoy a business class experience.

You can watch the whole experience right here on YouTube:

Nicky Kelvin – Economy Class

Seat: 38K

We paid: $68 (£52)

Judging this product in the context of it being a flight of less than an hour, there was a lot to love. The seat was comfortable and spacious, and the 2-4-2 configuration, paired with a light load, meant that most passengers had a spare seat next to them allowing them to spread out even more. Having an inflight entertainment screen with a comprehensive selection of TV shows and movies was also a treat on such a short flight.

On the downside — while the service was efficient and friendly — there was nothing available for free which was a shame. I went with a tea and a slice of fruit cake. The pricing was reasonable, but the credit card machine was not working when I tried to pay. I promised I would go to the galley later in the flight to try again, and when I did, the cabin crew were almost shocked at my honesty and as a thank you, I was not charged for my drink and snack.

Liam Spencer – Business Class

Seat: 3K

We paid: $245 (£186)

My ‘throne’ seat was spacious, extremely comfortable and came with a lot of privacy. It even had a massage feature (that I enjoyed so much I kept it turned on for the entirety of the 50-minute flight). I really enjoyed the rare chance to fly a wide-body aircraft on a short-haul route, which made the flight feel unique and exciting.

The Aer Lingus lounge at Dublin Airport (DUB) was a peaceful place to relax before my flight. There was ample space to chill out in, along with extensive food and drink options. Obviously, I treat myself to the suitably Irish combo of a Guinness and a Thai chicken wrap.

However, it wasn’t all great. Even though this was a short flight, the lack of a quick meal service was noticeable, and would have been appreciated if it was available. Instead, I was offered a narrow range of snacks and my Twix and Diet Coke certainly didn’t match the quality of the hard product (or the aforementioned Guinness and chicken wrap chaser). Aer Lingus also didn’t provide an amenity kit or headphones for the IFE system, despite being in business class. Other than the seat itself, the usual extras you would expect for a business-class ticket were sadly lacking.

Featured photo by The Points Guy.

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