Qantas opens London Heathrow lounge

Qantas has opened its first dedicated lounge at London Heathrow Terminal 3.

Qantas London Heathrow Lounge (Image Credit: Qantas Airways)

Qantas has officially opened its new lounge at London Heathrow Terminal 3. The lounge opens to passengers on Wednesday 29 November 2017.

Designed by Woods Bagot the lounge is split over two levels and features:

– An at seat dining area with a la carte menus
– Hot and cold buffet food
– A marble cocktail bar, overlooked by a brass chandelier
– A separate gin bar
– An all day barista coffee service
– A “Quench” hydration station with tisane, fruit infused water, sparkling water
– Six shower suites

As you can see from the pictures and video below wood and marble feature extensively throughout. Whilst Qantas lounges outside of Australia are relatively few and far between this is a typically high quality addition.

The lounge is open from 8am to 8.30pm daily. Passengers flying business and first class on Oneworld airlines are eligible to enter the lounge as are Oneworld Sapphire and Emerald cardholders. Qantas Club members and Emirates Skywards Platinum and Gold customers are also eligible.

Qantas London Heathrow Lounge (Image Credit: Qantas Airways)

Continue reading “Qantas opens London Heathrow lounge”

Travel Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 28 November 2017

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in travel and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 07:00 GMT.

MyFlights App Closure

Hello and welcome to the weekly bulletin featuring the latest developments on travel and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 07:00 GMT / 08:00 CET.

It’s a relatively short bulletin this week, in part due the Thanksgiving Holiday in the US last week.

MyFlights App to end on 31 December 2017

Over on this side of the pond, Chris Schofield the architect of the “MyFlights” app has announced that the app will be discontinued from Sunday 31 December 2017. MyFlights was an extremely useful third party app that periodically checked the status of your flight bookings on the Amadeus booking reservation system. It would often alert to you changes that airlines wouldn’t ordinarily tell you of such as seat and aircraft changes. The reason for the closure is that the app can no longer access passenger’s data without an agreement from the airline or travel agent. MyFlights was an extremely valuable tool that will be missed by many thousands.

Also of note this week:

ABC Australia has launched a new podcast The Urnbelievable Ashes featuring comedians Andy Zaltzman and Felicity Ward. Recorded in London, the podcast will take a humourous look at one of sport’s greatest rivalries.

This is a great marriage of landmark BBC TV series and the talents of BBC Radio 1 DJs. The BBC has released The Blue Planet II playlists featuring curated playlists of music to footage from Blue Planet II.

LBC has launched a new daily news podcast The Daily Debrief.

A great article from Bloomberg on why Apple’s delayed HomePod is three years behind Amazon Echo.

Our weekly Travel Technology Bulletin is published every Tuesday morning at 07:00 GMT / 08:00 CET. If you have any comments or suggestions, please contact us. And if you think it would be of interest to any colleagues or contacts, please share using the buttons below!

BA London – Doha cancellations December 2017

British Airways has cancelled its daily flight between London Heathrow to Doha throughout December and into January. Here are options for affected passengers.

British Airways Logo (Image Credit: British Airways)
British Airways Logo (Image Credit: British Airways)

British Airways is to cancel its daily flight between London Heathrow and Doha for December and early January for “operational reasons”.

The affected flight numbers are BA123 and BA122.

BA123 is cancelled from London Heathrow to Doha from Friday 1 December to Sunday 7 January 2018.

BA122 is also cancelled from Doha to London Heathrow from Saturday 2 December to Monday 8 January 2018.

No specific reason has been given for the cancellations other than “operational reasons”. This could be either aircraft or flight / cabin crew shortages.

Continue reading “BA London – Doha cancellations December 2017”

Aviation Business Briefing – Monday 27 November 2017

Welcome to our weekly aviation business briefing for the week beginning Monday 27 November 2017, as published every Monday at 07:00 GMT.

Heathrow Bears (Image Credit: Heathrow Airport)

BA – The World’s Favourite Headline

Pity the pour soul at BA’s Waterside Headquarters who drafted the now widely publicised internal memo on planned changes to its boarding procedures that its frequent flyers had been pleading for in focus groups for years. Presumably he or she was under the blissful ignorance that it would become one of the most read (and poorly drafted) stories on BBC News Online last week.

Heathrow’s Christmas TV ad

What more can be said about this year’s Christmas TV ad from Heathrow Airport?

A perfect blend of concept, technical excellence and emotional appeal. Perhaps the greatest signficance is simply how much the airport’s reputation has improved that it can run such an ad in the first place. It was seven years ago this Christmas that a hapless PR officer appeared before TV cameras claiming everything at the airport was operating normally, just as the airport seized up for days due to snow. The airport was subsequently castigated for its lack of preparedness and care for passengers.

We’ll be keeping on eye on this year’s Christmas videos from airlines and airports worldwide.
Continue reading “Aviation Business Briefing – Monday 27 November 2017”

Travel Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 21 November 2017

Our weekly bulletin on the latest developments in travel and technology around the world, as published every Tuesday morning at 07:00 GMT.

BA Smartphone App Upgrades

Hello and welcome to the weekly bulletin featuring the latest developments on travel and technology around the world, published every Tuesday at 07:00 GMT / 08:00 CET. British Airways updates its latest smartphone app

BA has this week released an update to its smartphone app which introduces a new functionality to purchase a fixed price upgrade on your flights.

BA has long offered one-way fixed price upgrades to the next available cabin (the most advantageous being from World Traveller Plus to Club World for anything betwen £399 and £599) through both the app and the Manage My Booking tool.

The offers tend to come and go at any point between purchasing the flight and checking in. These are of course primarily done for BA’s benefit. They generate additional revenue and convert what would otherwise be free upgrades on oversold flights into paid upgrades.

Well now you can purchase an available upgrade even after you’ve checked in for your flight. The availability and pricing of upgrades will of course vary by route and are more likely on routes with lower business class demand.

A likely explanation for this is that if premium seats become available at the last minute through passengers cancelling flexible tickets or missing connections, BA can now offer these seats for sale. The one downside for passengers is that the closer to departure you upgrade the fewer seats available to choose from.
Continue reading “Travel Technology Bulletin – Tuesday 21 November 2017”

Christmas Greetings from airlines & airports worldwide

The world’s airline and airports release their annual Christmas films to mark the festive season for 2017.

Heathrow Bears
Heathrow Bears (Image Credit: Heathrow Airport)

The release of a Christmas film by airlines and airports is now a regular fixture in the festive calendar. In previous years some have attracted audiences in the hundreds of millions.

Here is our collection of films released by the world’s airlines and airports for 2017 which we will update up to Christmas Eve.

As ever, these films are a timely reminder of the value of aviation in bringing people together.

For a retrospective view, here’s our collections from 2016,2015, and 2014.

Heathrow Airport: Closer This Christmas
Continue reading “Christmas Greetings from airlines & airports worldwide”

Aviation Business Briefing – Monday 20 November 2017

Welcome to our weekly aviation business briefing for the week beginning Monday 20 November 2017, as published every Monday at 07:00 GMT.

British Airways, First Class, Airbus, A380
British Airways First Class, Airbus A380 (Source: BA Press Office)

Hello and welcome to our weekly aviation business briefing for the week beginning Monday 20 November 2017.

Is BA going to order more Airbus A380s?

Interest in the future of the Airbus A380 was piqued this week following a claim in FlightGlobal that BA, as well as other airlines, were in talks about acquiring Airbus A380s that Singapore Airlines has returned to its lessor.

IAG CEO Willie Walsh is a fan of the Airbus A380: “It’s a great aircraft when you can fill it.” It clearly serves BA well on trunk routes such as Johannesburg and major US gateways such as Los Angeles and Miami. BA currently has 12 Airbus A380s in service, with options to acquire a further 7 from Airbus. However, Willie Walsh has declared the cost buying new aircraft as too expensive. Willie has expressed an interest in leasing second-hand Airbus A380s so the story, whatever the intentions of the source, is at least plausible. However, technical differences between BA and Singapore Airlines aircraft may prohibit a deal, unless it is at a very good price.

BA and IAG (which ultimately controls the purse strings) is clearly looking for a solution that gives flexibility to adjust capacity in a downturn. BA does not want to have to park 20+ A380s in the desert during the next recession.

The airline most closely associated with the Airbus A380 is of course Emirates which currently has some 100 of them in service. The airline was expected to announce a deal to acquire more at the Dubai Air Show, but it failed to materialise. Bloomberg has the story.
Continue reading “Aviation Business Briefing – Monday 20 November 2017”