Business class cabins can be radically different from one airline to another. Some airlines focus on the seats or their hard products, while others emphasize the soft products – like the meals and the service.
However, certain airlines highlight both. Among them are Delta and Virgin Atlantic. These two showcase two different business class products but both focus on quality and convenience so guests can enjoy the experience.
Find out more about their offerings in this Delta One Business Class vs. Virgin Atlantic Upper Class comparison.
- Quick Glance: Delta One Business Class vs. Virgin Atlantic Upper Class
- The Details: Delta One Business Class vs. Virgin Atlantic Upper Class
- Delta One Business Class
- Virgin Atlantic Upper Class
- Best For: Which Airline Class Should You Book?
- Wrapping Up
Quick Glance: Delta One Business Class vs. Virgin Atlantic Upper Class
|Delta One Business Class||Virgin Atlantic Upper Class|
|Ground Experience||Access to the Delta Sky Club Lounge is a primary perk when flying Delta One. These lounges are all around the United States. If you’re flying from a non-U.S. hub, Delta partner lounges are available too. You can bring 2 free checked bags at a maximum of 32 kilos each. Priority check-in lines and boarding are also on offer.||The Virgin Atlantic Clubhouses are free to use for Virgin Atlantic Upper Class guests. Inside the lounge are hot and cold meals, premium drinks, shower areas, nap rooms, and other amenities. In London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR), there are fast-track security, check-in, and boarding sections for Upper Class guests. Two free checked baggage weighing 32 kilos or less and 2 carry-on items and 1 personal item are allowed.|
|Seat||Available in the majority of their international routes, the Delta One is only offered on select domestic destinations. All seats in this cabin lie flat and have direct access to the aisle. Each one has spacious legroom, a built-in IFE, and on certain planes like the A330-900 and the Boeing 777-200LR, tall sliding doors for privacy. These seats carry a width of 19 to 25 inches and are arranged in a 1-2-1 configuration.||You’ll find the Virgin Atlantic Upper Class cabin in the A33neo, the 787, the A350, and the A330-300. The seats and arrangement vary depending on the plane. Both the 787 and the A330-300 carry similar styles with the 787 having an older 1-1-1 herringbone layout and a seat width of 22 inches. Both the 787 and the A330-300 also have The Bar installed – a social area where guests can hang out. Meanwhile, the A350 is the newest Upper Class cabin with a 1-2-1 layout and a seat width of 20 inches. All seats here are forward facing.|
|Amenities||Delta offers amenity kits from Someone Somewhere, a Mexico-based brand focusing on sustainable, handmade products. Inside the kit are skin items from Grown Alchemist, a lip balm, a bamboo toothbrush, a hand cream, and an eye mask.||Handed to each passenger is a “goodie bag” with a dental kit, a paper pen, ear plugs, an eye mask, socks, and REN Clean Skincare. If it’s an overnight flight, guests also get cotton pajamas aside from the duvet and pillows.|
|Food and Beverage||Pre-ordering meals using the Delta App is possible from 30 days up to 24 hours before departure. The meal service is 90 minutes before takeoff while the second meal is also served 90 minutes before the plane lands. There’s a host of appetizers, mains, and desserts. Delta also has a significant selection of wine, champagne, and drinks onboard.||Excellent meal service. Upper Class meals are presented in beautiful cutlery, plates, and linens. Meals start with an apéritif followed by starters, mains, then finally dessert. There are multiple options and it is coupled with excellent wine and drinks. Breakfast is served 90 minutes to 2 hours before landing. If you’re hungry in the middle of the flight, there’s food available as well.|
|Entertainment||Each seat on the Delta One is fitted with an 18-inch monitor and a bevy of movies, shows, podcasts, music, and an airshow inside Delta Studio. Delta-branded noise-canceling phones are on every seat.||You’ll get different IFE screen sizes depending on the plane. The 787 carries an 11.1-inch screen while the A350 has an 18.5-inch monitor. Aboard the A330neo is the newer 17.1-inch IFE screen which has Bluetooth capabilities. Vera comes pre-filled with shows, movies, music, podcasts, and more.|
|Lavatories||Inside the lavatories are Malin+Goetz products. There are usually 1 to 2 dedicated for Delta One guests.||Lavatory numbers can differ. On the 787 and the A350 are two lavatories. Meanwhile, both the A330-300 as well as A330-300 have a single lavatory.|
|Bed||The Delta One seats transform into a 76-inch flatbed. Coz-z-z pillows and blankets add extra comfort as well.||All beds measure 78 inches on the A330–300 and 787. On the A330-200, the bed is 71.3 inches while the A350 carries a bed pitch of 82 inches, the biggest of the seats.|
|Service||Delta attendants are attentive to details. They’re friendly, accommodating, and ready to assist with anything you need.||Cheerful and friendly are two words that best describe the Virgin Atlantic crew. Ready to help out with whatever you need, they can chat up passengers with ease so guests feel more comfortable flying.|
|Wi-Fi||Like most airlines, Delta offers free Wi-Fi for chat apps like Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp. For browsing and surfing, the plan starts at $6.95 and for streaming, it starts at $12.95. There’s a monthly subscription available for frequent flyers starting at $45 to $69.96, depending on the route.||Upper Class passengers can access Wi-Fi for 20 minutes for free. But for longer access, a one-hour plan starts at £5.99 or $7.20 while the entire flight will cost £18.99 or $22.89.|
The Details: Delta One Business Class vs. Virgin Atlantic Upper Class
Delta One Business Class
Want to access one of the best lounges in the United States? Fly Delta One! When you do, you get free access to the Delta Sky Club lounges in various airports across the United States.
Make yourself comfortable in any of the fantastic seating areas or indulge in a buffet of hot and cold dishes. There’s a fridge filled with beverages including a section for premium alcohol.
For those who need to squeeze in a bit of work, there’s a business center where you can do some printing or use the computer. There’s also a shower room and nap areas to catch some sleep.
Delta Sky Club lounges are in key cities like Los Angeles, Atlanta, Detroit, New York, and Seattle. You can also find them in other airports across the United States. When flying from overseas, guests can use Delta partner lounges.
Another great thing about flying on Delta One business class is you get 2 free checked baggage with a max weight of 32 kilograms each. There’s also dedicated boarding and check-in for passengers.
Stylish and modern, Delta One business seats are modified Vantage XL seats on the A350 and 777s. On the A330–200 the Cirrus seats are installed. Each seat shows off gorgeous upholstered blue and black leather with distinctive diamond-shaped flourishes.
Seats fitted with tall sliding doors are dubbed the Delta One Suites. These are on the Boeing 777–200LR, the A350, and the A330neo. You’ll find these arranged in a 1-2-1 layout and carry a 19 to 22-inch width.
On the seat are a giant monitor, spacious storage and cubbies, and a pullout tray. Each guest also receives an amenity kit.
After ending its partnership with TUMI, Delta has focused on greener alternatives. They’re currently partnering with Someone Somewhere.
Inside these handmade pouches are sustainable items like a bamboo toothbrush from the company Humble Companies as well as skincare products from Grown Alchemist. It also has an eye mask.
Aside from these kits, the seats also have Coz-z-z pillows and blankets for sleeping. Extremely comfortable, these are 96% recycled plastic which aligns with Delta’s commitment to becoming a greener airline.
Score excellent hotel and flight deals with the help of a points consultant. They can make full use of your points and get you tickets and bookings for fraction of the price.
Food and Beverage
Delta One business class comes with a great meal service. For starters, you can pre-book meals using the Delta App. You have the option to pick from appetizers, mains, and desserts.
It’s also possible to also order ahead of time – anywhere from 30 days up to 24 hours before departure. If Kosher or vegetarian meals are required, you can put in a request on the app.
Guests can expect two meal services on medium to long-haul routes. Everything starts with pre-flight champagne or beverage. It’s also at this time the crew hands out the paper menus or furnishes confirmation of your pre-ordered meals.
Meals start at least 40 to 90 minutes after takeoff. It begins with the tray table dressed in crisp white cloth as your meals are brought out in gorgeous Alessi cutlery.
Pair your meals with indulgent champagne or wine poured by your seat. The second meal or breakfast is lighter and composed of an omelet, bread, or fruit.
Choose from the best travel credit cards on this list. Scoring a superb credit card means you’ll get amazing value every time you swipe.
Appreciate amazing blockbuster films and popular TV shows on Delta’s onboard entertainment system. Delta Studio is filled with hundreds of Hollywood blockbusters, podcasts, music, and Live channels.
Most Delta One seats have an 18-inch touchscreen monitor with a remote so you can control it when lying down. Delta-branded headphones can be used with this IFE. While not as extravagant as other brands, these headsets offer decent sound and noise cancellation.
However, if you want to use your gadgets for entertainment, there are charging ports and outlets within easy reach.
Delta One offers different Wi-Fi plans to match your needs. You can connect for free when using chat applications like Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp. But for browsing, the plan starts at $6.95 per hour while for streaming videos, it starts at $12.95 per hour.
You can also subscribe to a plan if you fly monthly for $69.95 on international destinations.
The Points University makes it easy to learn all you need to know about the world of travel hacking.
The lavatory numbers differ between one or two depending on the airliner you’re using. While these lavatories are basic, they do have special Malin+Goetz toiletries for the business class cabin.
Like all premium business class seats, the Delta One lets you fully recline the seat so you can sleep on a bed while up in the air. When flat, the seat measures 76 inches in length with the footwell serving as an extension to accommodate your feet.
Guests will also receive comfortable Coz-z-z blankets and pillows. Turndown service isn’t available on Delta.
Staff and Guest Services
You can expect courteous and friendly service when flying in Delta One business class. The crew is well-trained, ensuring all your needs are met. There are occasional lapses in service which can be highly dependent on the crew, but in general, it’s pretty consistent.
Who Is It For?
Indulge in a fantastic business class product when you fly on Delta One. This cabin is made for frequent flyers who want a guarantee of comfort on their flight. It’s not the cheapest business class cabin but it provides a remarkable experience any luxury traveler can appreciate.
Delta One Business Class Gallery
Virgin Atlantic Upper Class
As an Upper Class guest, you can access the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse for free. These exceptional lounges are in most airports around the world like New York, San Francisco, Johannesburg, Washington D.C., and Heathrow, among others.
The Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse in Heathrow is humongous. It measures 26,000 square feet with ample seating, plenty of food and drinks as well as convenient workstations.
There are 3 buffet sections with cheeses, pastries, salmon, fresh fruit, and more. It’s also possible to order meals à la carte by scanning the QR code found on most tables.
To go with the bevy of dishes, there are premium wines, champagne, coffee, and more inside the lounge as well. Other amenities worth mentioning include a nap area, an outdoor patio, and an exercise area.
If you fly out of Heathrow, there’s a dedicated wing for boarding and check-in. There’s fast-track security as well.
In addition, as a premium passenger, you are entitled to 2 checked baggage of up to 32 kilos or 70.5 lbs. each. On the plane, guests can bring 2 hand-carry bags and 1 personal item.
Guests on the Virgin Atlantic Upper Class can expect a high-quality thick duvet and a fluffy pillow waiting for them on their seats. During overnight flights, additional cotton pajamas are given as well.
For the amenity kit, the “goodie bag” comes with a toothbrush, an eye mask, toothpaste, ear plugs, REN Clean skin products, and a pen. Noise-canceling headphones for the IFE are also nearby. But on particular planes, you can use your headphones via Bluetooth.
Food and Beverage
The Virgin Atlantic Upper Class has an extensive meal service. It starts with pre-flight champagne and some chips. A paper menu is given so guests can look at the specials and order.
On the menu, there are 2 options for starters, 3 for mains, and 2 choices for dessert. A cheese plate is also provided which can be paired with a selection of curated wines by Jeroboams.
After setting the table in white cloth, the dishes are brought out one by one for guests to enjoy. A second meal service begins 90 minutes before the plane lands. Here, you can choose from a full English breakfast or a simple pastry and coffee.
There’s a selection of snacks like sandwiches, ice cream, and more available as well. You can also grab food and drinks at The Bar or The Loft.
One of the more generous airlines, Virgin Atlantic allows guests to connect to Wi-Fi for 20 minutes free. For guests needing more time, the Wi-Fi plan starts at $7.88 (£5.99) for a 1-hour connection.
Those who want to have Wi-Fi throughout the flight can sign up for the full-flight connection starting at $22.23 (£18.99). This will allow you to stream and surf without any data caps.
On the 787, Upper Class guests will find 2 lavatories located at the back portion of the cabin. The A350 also has 2 lavatories but these are found at the front of the cabin. Only a single lavatory is provided for those flying on the A330-200.
Staff and Guest Services
Expect the crew and staff to be polite, attentive, and proactive with their service. Virgin Atlantic attendants are trained to be friendly and will always assist with any of the passenger’s needs.
Who Is It For?
Virgin Atlantic is known for its friendly staff and crew. Their business offering is also well-thought-out and ideal for anyone who wants to experience a luxury product, especially on longer routes.
Virgin Atlantic Upper Class Gallery
Best For: Which Airline Class Should You Book?
|Winner||What Makes It Great|
|Best for Food||Virgin Atlantic Upper Class||With a multi-course meal and a selection of curated wines, the Virgin Atlantic Upper Class elevates the meal service experience.|
|Best for Seats||Delta One Business Class||The Club Suites offer great privacy and excellent comfort. While Virgin Atlantic also has the Upper Class Suites on the A350, it can be hit or miss for passengers because the newer seats aren’t available on all of their fleets just yet.|
|Best for Ground Experience||Virgin Atlantic Upper Class||Access to the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouses is a huge plus when flying with Upper Class.|
|Best For Comfort||Tie||Both airlines prioritize comfort and relaxation for their guests.|
|Best for Families||Virgin Atlantic Upper Class||Virgin Atlantic’s numerous social areas like The Loft and The Bar make flying better for families since they can socialize without being confined to their seats.|
|Best for Couples||Tie||Both Delta and Virgin Atlantic have center seats equipped with privacy dividers to make it easy to interact with a partner.|
|Best for Service||Virgin Atlantic Upper Class||Virgin Atlantic staff and crew are always friendly and proactive.|
|Most Exclusive||Virgin Atlantic Upper Class||Virgin Atlantic Upper Class wins this one since it’s a cross between first class and business class.|
A business class cabin can transform your flight experience from mediocre to memorable.
Delta One business class is Delta’s most premium cabin on international routes. It has fantastic seats with tall sliding doors for privacy, enough cubbies to hold your small gadgets, and lies flat to give you ample room to sleep.
While the service can use a bit more consistency, it is generally a great experience for most passengers. They also provide access to premium Delta Sky Club lounges.
On the other hand, Virgin Atlantic Upper Class is focused on combining the world of business and first class. It has an amazing meal service, an attentive and cheerful crew, as well as generous social areas so you don’t have to be cooped up in your chair all the time.
The Upper Class Suites onboard planes like the A350 and A330neo are wonderful, but there are still remnants of the less desirable Upper Class seats on planes like the 787. These are set to be replaced but for now, it’s still possible to fly on them which can give you a less-than-stellar experience in Upper Class.
Both these airlines have their pros and cons so it’s really up to you which one you prefer.