British Airways is the largest airline at London City and London Heathrow airports. It also has a substantial presence at London Gatwick.
It is a subsidiary of International Airlines Group which also owns Aer Lingus, Iberia and Vueling who all have a presence in London.
BA is also a member of the Oneworld alliance and many of its fellow members such as American Airlines and Cathay Pacific have a substantial presence in London. BA therefore features very heavily on this site.
British Airways took delivery of its first Boeing 787 today and the airline has confirmed that the first two long-haul routes to feature the aircraft are New York (Newark) and Toronto. This is the first of some 42 Boeing 787 to delivered over the next few years.
A daily Boeing 787 service will operate to Toronto from 1 September 2013 with a 2nd daily 787 service between 15 September and 25 October. A daily service to New York (Newark) will operate from 1 October 2013. Full details about the aircraft are on ba.com
One of the many frustrations for air travellers are inconsistent rules between airlines. One specific irritation are the rules in respect of the use of mobile phones by passengers once an aircraft has landed on the runway.
The UK, in accordance with the rules of the Civil Aviation Authority (“CAA”), has always adopted a strict approach that mobile phones and other electronic devices cannot be switched on after landing until the aircraft has reached the gate and the aircraft engines have been switched off.
Some international airlines are not bound by such restrictions and allow the use of mobile phones once the wheels have touched down.
In practice, this often leads to passengers not following crew instructions.
BA has been working with the CAA and has been able to obtain agreement that mobile phones and other electronic devices can be used once the aircraft has cleared the runway and the all clear is given by cabin crew.
This is the second time in the past year that the CAA has relaxed its rules after lobbying by BA. Last year, BA obtained agreement that its in-flight entertainment systems could, subject to some restrictions, be used “gate to gate” rather than being switched on after take off and switched off before landing.
The new policy will apply network wide from 1 July 2013. Current policies on switching off electronic devices before take off remain unchanged.
British Airways has today, 10 June 2013, confirmed that is to take delivery of its first Boeing 787 aircraft on 26 June 2013, and a second Boeing 787 aircraft a day later. It will take delivery of its first Airbus A380 aircraft on 4 July 2013 at a special media event at Heathrow to celebrate the introduction of two new aircraft types to its fleet.
British Airways has today confirmed that it is, with immediate effect, to offer codeshares with Bangkok Airways on flights from Bangkok to Phuket, Koh Samui, Chiang Mai, and from Singapore to Koh Samui. These are three of the eight destinations in Thailand served by Bangkok Airways.
The move is not surprising. Both Bangkok and Singapore have previously acted as a “scissor hub” for British Airways and Qantas to provide onward connections to numerous cities in Australia. Although these codeshares between British Airways and Qantas are still in place, these are less competitive for passengers arriving from London. This is because Qantas has retimed its Australia bound flights from Bangkok and Singapore after ceasing to fly from London to Bangkok and Singapore.
BA has also downgraded the Bangkok route from a four class Boeing 747 to a three class Boeing 777 from 27 October 2013, indicating under performance on this route.
British Airways has announced it is to upgrade its London Heathrow – Rio de Janeiro route from a three class Boeing 777-200 aircraft to a four class Boeing 777-300 aircraft from Sunday 27 October 2013.
When London Heathrow Terminal 5 opened a little over five years ago (the opening was a day many will never forget!), much was made by BA of the introduction of its “Galleries” lounge concept. At Heathrow, this comprises the “flagship” Concorde Room for first class passengers and Concorde Room cardholders, a Galleries First lounge for BA Executive Club Gold cardholders, three Galleries Club lounges and a Galleries Arrivals lounge for arriving passengers. The lounges were designed by what was then known as Davies & Baron. The lounges feature bespoke Osborne & Little patterns, bold statements such as horse lamps as well as more subtle art and design statements.
British Airways has announced it is to launch a new, thrice weekly, route from London Gatwick to Larnaca.
The route launches on 30 June 2013 and will operate in addition to BA’s daily service from London Heathrow.
The flight operates on Sunday, Monday and Thursday. As is common for Garwick the flight operates at different times on each operating day.
Flight BA2674 departs at 08:35 on Monday (returning from Larnaca at 16:10), 14:40 on Thursday (returning at 22:05) and 09:25 on Sunday (returning at 17:00). The flight will be operated with a Boeing 737 aircraft.
From a network development point of view there are a couple of interesting points to note.
First this is another new London Gatwick route which, like Barcelona and Las Vegas, operates in parallel to Heathrow. In recent times London Gatwick and Heathrow have tended to maintain broadly distinct networks but the latest Gatwick routes are a reversal of this trend. Heathrow has also moved into Gatwick’s leisure territory with seasonal routes to Palma de Mallorca, Ibiza and Gran Canaria.
Secondly, this is a relatively long range route which indicates where BA sees growth in the difficult short haul market at Gatwick.
British Airways has confirmed changes to its London Gatwick short-haul timetable for the Winter 2013 season, which starts at the end of October.
The changes announced for so far are relatively minor, but in the context of perennial uncertainty over the future of BA’s London Gatwick short-haul operation, that is no bad thing.
Flights to Salzburg increase from 7 to 8 a week, with an additional flight on Tuesday.
Flights to Paphos continue twice weekly on Mondays and Fridays until 29 November 2013. Flights currently operate four weekly in the summer season.
Flights to Marrakech increase from 7 to 10 weekly, with additional flights on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday. Note that each additional flight has a different departure and arrival time. Flight BA 2668 departs London Gatwick at 11:35 on Monday (returning 15:50), 06:45 on Wednesday (returning 11:00), and 06:55 on Saturday (returning 11:10).