We have flown BA several times in the last few years, mostly on their City Break deals, and this was our second time with them to Lisbon. It was our first time with BA since they stopped their complimentary cabin service, or - more accurately - since they abandoned any semblance of customer service.
The farce started at the departure gate, where despite having checked in early we were required to check in our cabin-sized bags to the hold. Not much point having the proper bags when dozens of people then board behind you to store their huge bags in the overhead lockers. Significantly, all the people who were singled out in this way were UK passport holders. We had travelled light as we needed to get to our hotel, being on the evening flight we didn't want to be hanging around waiting for bags.
As soon as we were airborne the staff were peddling the food and drink for all they were worth. A group of Americans around us were clearly well on the way when boarding, yet the dozy stewards were happy to keep selling them alcohol no matter how loud and rowdy they became. I had asked for a comment form which arrived just as we were about to land from an apologetic and embarrassed head stewardess. I did mention the drunks but it seems it is now BA policy to sell as much as they can.
The return flight was also a fiasco as far as baggage is concerned, since some passengers were bringing on three or four bags. The cabin crew seem to have given up and there were still bags in the aisle as we taxied.
We flew Ryanair a few weeks before this trip, and although they are bargain basement, they are at least well organised. It is very depressing that the national airline has been dumbed down to Ryanair standard, albeit without their low prices.