British Airways Heathrow Staff Vote For Strike Action

BA ground staff at London Heathrow represented by GMB & Unite have voted for strike action in a dispute over pay.

London Air Travel » British Airways

British Airways Coat Of Arms
British Airways Coat Of Arms (Image Credit: British Airways)

British Airways staff at London Heathrow represented by the GMB & Unite unions have voted in favour of strike action.

Around 700 GMB staff were balloted. They voted 95% in favour of strike action. The turnout was 81%.

A similar ballot of around 500 BA staff at Heathrow represented by the Unite union voted 94.7% in favour of strike action.

The dispute with BA is over pay. The unions claim that a 10% pay cut imposed on ground staff by the airline during the COVID-19 pandemic has not been reinstated. Check-in staff also not received a 10% bonus given to other BA staff.

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BA Plans Phased Move To New York JFK Terminal 8

British Airways plans a phased transition of flights from Terminal 7 to 8 at New York JFK from mid-November 2022.

London Air Travel » British Airways

Artist impression of co-branded American Airlines & BA premium check-in area, New York JFK Terminal 8 (Image Credit: British Airways)

British Airways has updated its plans to co-locate with American Airlines at New York JFK Terminal 8.

Earlier this year, BA and AA confirmed long anticipated plans to co-locate all flights between London and New York JFK at Terminal 8 from December 2022.

BA’s current home at New York JFK Terminal 7 will close. Terminal 7 will be demolished to allow a new terminal to be constructed on its site.

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BA Tightens Rebooking Policies On Flight Schedule Changes

British Airways has tightened its policy for rebooking passengers on to alternative flights where schedules have changed.

London Air Travel » British Airways

British Airways Airbus A350-1000 G-XWBA Aircraft, London Heathrow
British Airways Airbus A350-1000 G-XWBA Aircraft, London Heathrow (Image Credit: British Airways)

British Airways has updated its policy for rebooking passengers in the event of flight schedule changes.

This change applies from today, Wednesday 15 June 2022. It is assumed it applies to all existing bookings, as well as new bookings made from today.

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British Airways Africa Franchise Comair To Be Liquidated

Comair is to be liquidated after it failed to raise new funds to restart flights.

London Air Travel » British Airways

Comair Boeing 737 Aircraft
Comair Boeing 737 Aircraft (Image Credit: Comair)

Note: This article has been updated since first published to confirm that Comair is to be liquidated.

British Airways’ franchise partner in South Africa, Comair, is to be liquidated.

Comair suspended all flights and ticket sales on 31 May 2022. At the time the company advised that it was securing new funds and would restart flights as soon as these were obtained.

Its Business Rescue Practitioners have issued a short statement, today Thursday 9 June, to advise “they no longer believe that there is a reasonable prospect that the Company can be rescued.”

Comair has subsequently issued a statement to confirm that liquidation proceedings have started.

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British Airways Africa Franchise Comair Suspends All Flights

Comair, which operates as a BA franchise in South Africa, has suspended all flights and ticket sales with immediate effect.

London Air Travel » British Airways

Comair Boeing 737 Aircraft
Comair Boeing 737 Aircraft (Image Credit: Comair)

British Airways’ franchise partner in South Africa, Comair, has suspended all flights and ticket sales with immediate effect.

This will continue until the airline secures new funding.

Comair suspended all flights and entered into a Business Rescue Process in 2020 following the COVID-19 pandemic. The company had secured new investment and restarted flights with a smaller fleet of aircraft.

A number of factors have affected its planned recovery. This includes rising oil prices and countries including the UK putting South Africa on the “red list” in December 2021 due to the Omicron COVID-19 variant. This alone was said to have resulted in a working capital shortfall of ZAR 100 million / £5 million.

The South Africa Civil Aviation Authority also temporarily suspended Comair’s operating licence in March 2022 due to concerns over a number of safety incidents.

Comair’s Business Rescue Practitioners have advised for some months that the company needed additional funding. This, along with renegotiating payment terms with lenders, was said to be in process.

Comair issued a statement on the evening of Tuesday 31 May 2022 to advise it has no option but to suspend all flights and ticket sales until new funding is obtained.

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Iberia To Operate British Airways Heathrow Short Haul Flights

Iberia will operate select BA short haul flights from Heathrow Terminal 5 until 31 August 2022.

London Air Travel » British Airways

Barcelona at Sunrise (Image Credit: London Air Travel)

British Airways will once again turn to one of its sister airlines to operate short haul flights from London this summer.

BA is already leasing aircraft and crews from Iberia Express to cover flights at Gatwick.

Finnair is also operating select flights from London Heathrow Terminal 3.

The airline will now call on Iberia to operate select BA short haul fights from Heathrow Terminal 5.

This is currently due to start from Wednesday 1 June until Wednesday 31 August 2022.

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BA Extends Gold Upgrade Vouchers To American Airlines

Gold Members of the BA Executive Club can now use Upgrade Vouchers on American Airlines operated flights.

London Air Travel » British Airways

American Airlines Flagship Lounge, Miami, Views of the apron
American Airlines Flagship Lounge, Miami, Views of the apron (Image Credit: London Air Travel)

Members of the BA Executive Club can now use Gold Upgrade vouchers on American Airlines operated flights.

A Gold Upgrade For Two voucher is issued to Gold members of the Executive Club when they earn 2,500 tier points.

Two Gold Upgrade For One vouchers are issued when a member earns 3,500 tier points.

These can be used to upgrade a complete itinerary to the next cabin, subject to availability.

It was only possible to do this on flights operated by BA and its franchise partners. Any flights in the booking operated by other airlines would not be upgraded.

This is now extended to transatlantic and US domestic flights operated by American Airlines, including regional flights operated by American Eagle. This is regardless of whether the flight is sold by AA, or sold by BA as a codeshare.

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BA CEO Sean Doyle Makes Management Changes

BA CEO Sean Doyle has made a series of senior management changes at the airline.

London Air Travel » British Airways

Sean Doyle, Chief Executive & Chairman, British Airways (Image Credit: British Airways)

At the start of the year, BA CEO Sean Doyle announced a series of senior management changes to spearhead the airline’s recovery from COVID-19.

As has been well publicised the start of BA’s busiest travel season since the pandemic has been difficult. The airline has been beset by staff shortages, congestion at Heathrow Terminal 5 and sporadic IT issues.

During the first quarter results presentation of its parent company IAG last week, Sean maintained that the airline’s operational performance is improving.

IAG alluded to further senior management changes at BA. A second set of senior management changes in the space of four months have been reported today by the Financial Times.

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British Airways’ First Quarter Results

IAG and BA set out their plans to ensure operational resilience at London Heathrow over the summer travel season.

London Air Travel » British Airways

Side view of British Airways Airbus A380 aircraft registration G-XLEL.
British Airways Airbus A380 Aircraft G-XLEL (Image Credit: British Airways)

BA’s parent company International Airlines Group released its financial results for the first quarter of the year today, Friday 6 May 2022.

The numbers contain few surprises. IAG reported a loss of €754 million and expects to return to profitability from this quarter.

At the start of the year, IAG and BA had been selling a positive vision of the future to both investors and the wider press.

As has been well publicised, this has not turned out to be the case. Congestion and staff shortages at Heathrow have resulted short notice cancellations and disruption to baggage handling. This cost BA €50 million in lost revenues and additional costs in the first quarter.

IAG and BA management set out some of the steps taken to address these issues:

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Finnair To Operate BA Heathrow Short Haul Flights

Finnair will operate selected BA short haul fights from London Heathrow Terminal 3 throughout the summer.

London Air Travel » British Airways

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge, London Heathrow Terminal 3 (Image Credit: British Airways)

British Airways has called on its Oneworld alliance partner Finnair to operate a number of short haul flights on its behalf throughout the summer 2022.

This follows a similar move at Gatwick where BA has wet leased Iberia Express aircraft.

Finnair will operate selected BA short haul fights based at Heathrow Terminal 3. This will run from 3 May until at least 31 August.

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