British Airways’ service from London Heathrow to Buenos Aires will operate via Sao Paulo from Sunday 28 March 2021.
The last non-stop service from London Heathrow to Buenos Aires is currently scheduled to operate on Friday 26 March 2021.
As a consequence of the stop for one hour at Sao Paulo Guarulhos International Airport, the journey time from London Heathrow will increase from 14 hours to 15 hours and 40 minutes.
The flight numbers to / from Buenos Aires will also change from BA245 / BA244 to BA247 / BA246.
This is expected to continue until Sunday 31 October 2021 at the earliest. Long time BA flyers may remember that BA used to fly to Buenos Aires via Sao Paulo many years ago. A non-stop service to Buenos Aires is likely to return when economic conditions allow.
British Airways has cancelled outbound passenger flights from London Heathrow to Hong Kong until Friday 18 December 2020.
BA will continue to send aircraft to Hong Kong with cargo only. Inbound passenger flights from Hong Kong to London Heathrow will operate as normal.
According to a report in the South China Morning Post, BA has been banned by local authorities from operating passenger flights to Hong until Friday 25 December.
This is after it was found that four passengers who travelled on a BA flight to Hong Kong on Tuesday had COVID-19. Another passenger’s documents were not checked properly by the airline.
Whilst BA has been banned from flying to passengers to Hong Kong for two weeks and flights have been taken off sale until 25 December, at the time of publication the airline has only cancelled flights to Hong Kong up to Friday 18 December. This suggests that BA is seeking an alleviation.
British Airways will reinstate more long-haul routes in October as it gradually rebuilds its network at London Heathrow.
Routes that are confirmed as returning in October include:
Bahrain – 3 times weekly from 1 October Cape Town -Daily from 1 October Johannesburg – Daily from 1 October Kuala Lumpur – 4 times weekly from 2 October Montreal – 3 times weekly from 2 October Riyadh – 3 times weekly from 1 October The Seychelles – 2 times weekly from 10 October Tokyo Haneda – 3 times weekly from 1 October
BA will also operate one-off flights to Grand Cayman on 1 and 15 October.
Passengers must comply with entry restrictions and route specific procedures which can include:
Restrictions on entry based on citizenship and purpose of travel.
Evidence of a negative PCR COVID-19 test.
Completion and submission of a medical declaration before travel.
Advance registration with overseas authorities.
Some routes closing for sale up to 7 days before travel.
Restrictions on transit passengers.
Links to country-by-country guidance and relevant forms that must be completed before departure are on ba.com
Some countries require forms to be completed and submitted to relevant authorities 24-72 hours before travel. Passengers who do not comply may be denied boarding.
British Airways is to reinstate a number of long-haul routes at London Heathrow in the coming days.
The airline will also launch a new four times weekly service from London Heathrow to Lahore from Monday 12 October 2020, complementing its existing service to Islamabad which has also increased in frequency.
The following routes will also return from mid-September onwards:
Africa Abuja – Daily from Wednesday 16 September
Central & South America Buenos Aires – Initially only on Friday 25 September Mexico City – Twice weekly on Thursday 24 September
North America Atlanta – Daily from Saturday 19 September Grand Cayman – Only on 17 September, 1 October, 15 October Houston – Three times weekly from Sunday 20 September Philadelphia – Twice weekly from Sunday 20 September
Flights to Chicago O’Hare will also benefit from twice daily passenger flights on some days in late September.
Please see here for a full list of where BA will fly to in September.
Passengers are of course subject to entry restrictions. BA has provided a list of links to country-by-country guidance and relevant forms that must be completed before departure on its website.
Like other long-haul routes that have been reinstated at Heathrow, these have already been served by cargo-only flights. With airlines adopting a laser like approach to cash conservation, BA is likely to reinstate scheduled passenger flights where there is sufficient underlying cargo demand. There are few long-haul routes left where at Heathrow BA is operating only cargo flights such as Bangkok, Johannesburg and Kuala Lumpur.
British Airways is to operate flights from London Heathrow to Amman, Cairo and Moscow Domodedovo with short-haul configured aircraft from Sunday 25 October 2020.
These routes were, bar occasional short-haul substitutions, operated with medium-haul configured Airbus A321 aircraft with flat beds in Club World or Boeing 787 aircraft.
As a consequence of this:
First Class will not be offered. First Class passengers will be downgraded to Club Europe.
World Traveller Plus will not be offered, and passengers will be downgraded to Euro Traveller.
No in-flight entertainment will be available and catering will be offered in accordance with Club Europe and Euro Traveller standards.
First Class, Club World and World Traveller Plus passengers who do not wish to travel have the option of a full refund. Alternatively, passengers who do travel can make a claim for a refund of the fare difference.
All passengers have the option of moving to a flight on the same route with long-haul configured aircraft up to 14 days before the change of aircraft, to the extent they are operating.
The flight numbers will also change accordingly:
Amman: BA147 / BA146 to BA312 / BA313
Cairo: BA155 / BA154 to BA400 / BA401
Moscow Domodedovo: BA233 / BA232 and BA237 / BA236 to BA880 / BA881 and BA882 / BA883
As is standard practice when flight numbers change, passengers will be advised that their original flight has been cancelled and rebooked.
BA has now made a similar move for South Africa. The airline will be operating special one-way only flights from Johannesburg on Sunday 6, Friday 11, Friday 25 and Sunday 27 September 2020.
These flights will leave Johannesburg in the morning, rather than the evening. The exact flight times quoted by BA differ from what is currently showing on ba.com Flights will be operated with Boeing 777 aircraft.
These flights close for sale 7 days before departure. Seats are offered for sale in World Traveller economy, World Traveller Plus premium economy and Club World business class at fixed prices. Passengers must ensure they complete the forms specified by BA in advance of travel.
There are also specific procedures for check-in, which takes place at the Garden Court Hotel at OR Tambo International airport.
Whilst passengers can connect from domestic flights in South Africa, BA’s franchise partner Comair has suspended all flights until November 2020.
More detailed guidance is available in a document BA has released for its travel trade partners.
Whilst these are only two one-off flights, it is hoped it is at least the start of progress between airlines and governments to reopen scheduled international travel in a secure manner.
Update Friday 25 September
British Airways will resume daily scheduled flights from London Heathrow to Cape Town and Johannesburg on 1 October 2020.
British Airways has suspended plans to launch a new route from London Heathrow to Portland, Oregon.
BA was due to launch the route on 1 June 2020 with the Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft. This had been postponed until Wednesday 2 September 2020.
The route has today, Tuesday 21 July 2020, been taken off sale and removed from BA’s timetables entirely.
With no prospect of an imminent relaxation of travel restrictions to the US and reduced demand well into 2021, it is not surprising to see the launch of a new long-haul route postponed as they typically take a couple of years to establish themselves.
Passengers whose flights have been cancelled are entitled to a full refund. You will need to call BA to secure this. You can check the status of your booking using the Manage My Booking tool on ba.com. If you cancel your flight through ba.com you will be given a voucher which can be exchanged for travel up to and including 30 April 2022.
British Airways has transferred its winter seasonal route to Male, Maldives from London Gatwick to London Heathrow from the start of the winter season in October 2020.
The route will operate from Sunday 25 October 2020 to Friday 26 March 2021. Flights continue to operate three times weekly, with broadly similar flight times.
The route will be operated with a larger Boeing 777-300 aircraft, with the addition of a First Class cabin.
As the route will operate under a new flight number any passengers with an existing booking will be notified that their flight has been cancelled and they have been rebooked on to the flight from Heathrow.
BA does also codeshare with Qatar Airways to Male via Doha and it is possible to passengers to combine direct and indirect routings if that is more convenient.
Any passengers with existing bookings can check the status of their booking using the Manage My Booking tool on ba.com and should contact BA or their travel agent.
London Heathrow – Male
Flight BA61 Depart London Heathrow 18:15 – Arrive Male 09:40 (Wednesday, Friday & Sunday) Flight BA60 Depart Male 11:45 – Arrive London Heathrow 18:10 (Monday, Thursday & Saturday)