British Airways deployed the first of 18 refurbished Boeing 747s this week, using it for the route between London Heathrow and New York Kennedy.

The revamped jumbo jet sports new carpets, curtains and seat covers, as well as new seat foams in the craft's economy and premium economy sections. In addition, the plane has been fitted with the Panasonic eX3 in-flight entertainment system, which offers a choice of more than 130 movies and 400 TV programs on high resolution seat-back screens.

British Airway's updated 747s will operate first on selected London flights to and from Chicago, Lagos, Dubai, Boston, Riyadh and Kuwait, in addition to New York. Further routes will be added next summer.

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