Lionesses to fly premium economy, not charter flight to USA

The women’s team say that premium economy was “best available option” and squad will return from the USA in business class; Both the senior men’s team and the U21s charter a plane for fixtures abroad

By Rebecca Williams

Last Updated: 27/02/20 2:17pm

The Lionesses will fly to the USA in premium economy

The Lionesses will fly to the USA in premium economy

The Lionesses will fly to the USA in premium economy

England Women will be flying out to the USA for the SheBelieves Cup in premium economy, rather than on a chartered flight that the senior men’s and U21 team would use.

The women’s side were planning to fly in business class, but by the time US Soccer confirmed the SheBelieves Cup schedule, there were not enough seats left.

England have decided to travel together as a squad and it meant to fly out in a lower class.

A statement from the women’s team said: “As soon as the match schedule for the SheBelieves Cup was confirmed by US Soccer The FA investigated business class flights for the England Women’s squad and staff.

“As Orlando is a hugely popular tourist destination, by the time the tournament fixtures were confirmed there was no longer sufficient availability of business class seats on a direct flight.

England women's team are holders of the SheBelieves Cup

England women's team are holders of the SheBelieves Cup

England women’s team are holders of the SheBelieves Cup

“The business class options available would have necessitated either an indirect flight via a US hub airport, or splitting the squad and staff onto two separate flights. Neither option was considered optimal from a performance perspective.

“The best available option was to travel premium economy on a single direct daytime flight to Orlando.

“The squad and staff will return from the US in business class.”

The decision highlights the stark differences between the men’s and women’s game. Both the senior men’s team and the U21s charter a plane for fixtures abroad.

England won the SheBelieves Cup last year and are looking to defend their title. The tournament gets underway on March 5.

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