Irony of ironies, British Airways’ “afternoon tea” available for purchase in economy class does not include tea!
British Airways has a new summer buy-on-board menu. Included in that menu is “afternoon tea” with the following description:
Enjoy our celebratory edition of a true British classic
An indulgent sultana scone served with traditional clotted cream and delicious strawberry preserve – pair it with a hot cup of Tea Pigs Everyday Brew for an authentic cream tea experience. Or why not add a bottle of Champagne to make it that little bit more fancy?
£5.00 / 715 Avios
I encountered this menu item on my recent flight from London to Basel and had planned to write about it this week, heralding BA for offering a nice afternoon tea option in economy class. But it turns out I misread the description. I read “pair it” as including tea (versus “adding” a bottle of Champagne). Clearly, I read it wrong. And I wasn’t the only one…
If you want tea, it will cost you an extra £2.50…
BA has been blasted with clever retorts like the one below on Twitter:
— Ben Fletcher (@BenSFletcher) May 1, 2019
One Flyertalk member said,
For us Brits it’s almost the law that afternoon tea includes tea. I dare say it’s the equivalent of an American buying a beefburger then being told it doesn’t include the bread roll which has to be purchased separately.
To my British readers, is that also your understanding of afternoon tea?
British Airways told the Independent:
Whether it’s a traditional cup of tea, our new espresso martini or a bottle of champagne, we offer a wide range of beverages to allow customers to choose which option they pair our popular afternoon tea with
BA has said that it will provide complimentary hot water if you bring your own cup and teabag. But don’t even think about asking for any milk or lemon…
This whole story is not much ado about nothing. It has gained traction precisely because British Airways comes across as so comically cheap. 5GBP for a scone and you don’t even throw in a cup of coffee or tea that probably costs 2o pence?