Virgin Atlantic launches London Heathrow – Las Vegas for 2018 CES

Virgin Atlantic is to operate two special return flights between London Heathrow (departing on Sunday 7 & Monday 8 January 2018) and Las Vegas (returning Friday 12 & Saturday 13 January 2018) for the benefit of visitors to the annual Consumer Electronics Show.

Virgin Atlantic Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner Upper Class Cabin (Credit: Virgin Atlantic)
Virgin Atlantic Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner Upper Class Cabin (Credit: Virgin Atlantic)

Virgin Atlantic is to operate two special return flights between London Heathrow and Las Vegas for the benefit of visitors to the annual Consumer Electronics Show in January 2018.

The flights will depart London Heathrow on Sunday 7 and Monday 8 January 2018 and will return from Las Vegas on Friday 12 and Saturday 13 January 2018.

Flights will be operated using Virgin Atlantic’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner which features a larger Upper Class cabin as well as amenities such as in-flight WiFi.

These will complement Virgin’s existing Boeing 747 service between London Gatwick and Las Vegas and will compete BA’s own direct Boeing 747 services between London Heathrow and Las Vegas which can operate up to twice daily.

This new “pop up” route does point to Virgin being flexible with its schedule to take advantage of peaks in demand. The airline is to also launch a seasonal route from London Heathrow to Barbados in December 2017, which will again complement its London Gatwick service.

Flights are on sale now at VirginAtlantic.com

London Heathrow – Las Vegas

Flight VS961 Depart London Heathrow 11:15 – Arrive Las Vegas 14:00 (7, 8 January 2018)
Flight VS962 Depart Las Vegas 21:45 – Arrive London Heathrow 15:55 (12, 13 January 2018)

Norwegian launches London Gatwick – Buenos Aires from February 2018

Norwegian will fly from London Gatwick to Buenos Aires four times weekly from Wednesday 14 February 2018.

Norwegian Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner
Norwegian Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner

Norwegian has announced yet another long-haul route from London Gatwick.  The airline will fly to Buenos Aires four times weekly from Wednesday 14 February 2018. This will be the airline’s first direct route from London Gatwick to South America.

As per other long-haul routes at Gatwick, the route will be served by Norwegian’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner in a two class configuration.

Continue reading “Norwegian launches London Gatwick – Buenos Aires from February 2018”

BA launches new ski routes from London Heathrow to Grenoble & Turin

BA will fly from London Heathrow to Grenoble once a week from 2 December 2017 and Turin twice weekly on Saturdays and Sundays from 26 November 2017.

British Airways Short Haul Economy Cabin (Credit: British Airways)

British Airways has announced the launch of two new seasonal weekend ski routes from London Heathrow. BA will fly to Grenoble in France once a week on Saturdays from 2 December 2017. BA will also fly to Turin in Italy twice weekly on Saturdays and Sundays from 26 November 2017.

Flights will operate from London Heathrow Terminal 5 and will be operated by Airbus aircraft in a two class, Club Europe and EuroTraveller configuration.

BA also serves Turin from London Gatwick and it is possible to “mix and match” different London airports, if convenient.

Flights are on sale now at ba.com

London Heathrow – Grenoble

Flight BA384 Depart London Heathrow 11:55 – Arrive Grenoble 14:45
Flight BA385 Depart Grenoble 15:40 – Arrive London Heathrow 16:30

London Heathrow – Turin

Flight BA600 Depart London Heathrow 07:05 – Arrive Turin 10:10 (Saturday)
Flight BA600 Depart London Heathrow 06:50 – Arrive Turin 09:55 (Sunday)
Flight BA601 Depart Turin 11:05 – Arrive London Heathrow 12:05 (Saturday)
Flight BA601 Depart Turin 10:45 – Arrive London Heathrow 11:45 (Sunday)

BA 123 & BA 122 London – Doha cancelled 1 – 7 July 2017

British Airways has cancelled its daily flights between London Heathrow to Doha for a period of six days between Saturday 1 July to Friday 7 2017. Here are options for affected passengers.

British Airways Cabin Crew (Image Credit: British Airways)
British Airways Cabin Crew (Image Credit: British Airways)

British Airways has cancelled its daily flight between London Heathrow and Doha for a period of six days between Saturday 1 July to Friday 7 2017.

The affected flight numbers are BA123 and BA122. BA123 is cancelled from London Heathrow to Doha from Saturday 1 July to Thursday 6 July. BA122 is cancelled from Doha to London Heathrow from Sunday 2 July to Friday 7 July.

It is highly likely that this is connected to planned strike action by “Mixed Fleet” London Heathrow cabin crew on these dates. As the industrial action is planned to from 1 July to 16 July, there is the possibility of further cancellations

BA has a rebooking agreement with Qatar Airways (which is a fellow Oneworld alliance member and a 20% shareholder of BA’s parent company International Airlines Group).

If your flight is cancelled you have the option of rebooking on to one of Qatar Airways’ five daily flights from London Heathrow to Doha up to three days before or after your original date of travel.
Continue reading “BA 123 & BA 122 London – Doha cancelled 1 – 7 July 2017”

BA suspends London – Bergen & Stavanger from 28 October 2017

British Airways has announced that it is to suspend flights from London Heathrow to Bergen and Stavanger from 28 October 2017. Here are options for affected passengers.


British Airways has announced that it is to suspend flights from London Heathrow to Bergen Flesland airport and Stavanger Sola airport from Saturday 28 October 2017. 

These routes were inherited by BA when its parent company International Airlines Group acquired bmi in 2012.  The reason for the suspension is poor commercial performance.

The last flights will operate on Saturday 28 October 2017.

Passengers who are currently booked to fly from London Heathrow from Sunday 29 October 2017 have the option of:

  • A full refund
  • Rebook on to an alternative flight to/from Bergen and Stavengar from Friday 1 September 2017 to Saturday 28 October 2017 
  • Rebooking on to an alternative BA operated flight between London Heathrow and Oslo up to 14 days before/after your original travel date.  However, any consequential costs such as ground transportation must be met at your own expense

BA has not yet announced any rebooking arrangements with rival airlines.  It normally takes time for these to be agreed and further details may be announced over the next few days.

For passengers looking at alternative routes from late October, other direct options include Norwegian from London Gatwick to Bergen and Stavanger and SAS from London Heathrow to Stavanger.

Affected passengers should contact BA or your travel agent.

British Airways Cabin Crew Strike: Saturday 1 July – Sunday 16 July 2017

Some British Airways London Heathrow cabin crew are due to take industrial action from Saturday 1 July to Sunday 16 July 2017.

British Airways Cabin Crew (Image Credit: British Airways)
British Airways Cabin Crew (Image Credit: British Airways)

Unite, the union which represents British Airways “Mixed Fleet” cabin crew at London Heathrow, has called for further industrial action over sixteen consecutive days from Saturday 1 July to Sunday 16 July 2017.

This is continuation of a dispute that led to a call for industrial action today (Friday 16 June) which was suspended to allow for talks at the conciliation service ACAS.   Talks are likely to continue between now and July.

BA has yet to its confirm its schedules during the strike. However, it does say that all customers will be able to reach their destinations during the strike, suggesting that short-haul routes with multiple flights a day are most at risk of cancellations

What can be confirmed now is:

  • All flights from London City, London Gatwick and London Stansted will operate as normal.
  • All flights from UK regional airports (apart from flights to London Heathrow) will operate as normal
  • The majority of flights from London Heathrow will operate as normal with some flights merged and short-haul flights most at risk of cancellation. There may also be some tactical long-haul cancellations
  • BA will not publish a full list of cancelled flights as it evidently keen to play down the impact of the industrial action.
  • If your flight is cancelled you will offered the opportunity to rebook to an alternative flight or a refund

The impact of the strike is likely to be low. The best advice is to check your booking using the Manage My Booking tool and ensure your e-mail and telephone contact details are up to date.  In addition, it is a good idea to download the BA app to your smartphone to receive notifications about your flight.

At present, BA is not allowing any proactive rebooking to flights outside of the strike action and any changes or cancellations to existing bookings will be made in accordance with the fare rules at the time of booking.

In terms of the risk of further industrial action, the union is required to give 14 days’ notice to BA.  So if there are no announcements two weeks before your flight you can assume it is not a risk of strike action.

Are there any indications of routes most at risk of cancellation?

BA has three cabin crew fleets at London Heathrow. These are known internally as EuroFleet, Worldwide and Mixed Fleet. Each fleet operates designated routes. Only routes operated at Mixed Fleet are at risk of cancellation.

During the last strikes by Mixed Fleet earlier this year, these routes experienced cancellations:

Short-Haul: Aberdeen, Dusseldorf, Gibraltar, Hamburg, Manchester, Marseille, Oslo, Stuttgart

Long-Haul: Doha, San Jose

There is no guarantee that routes not mentioned above are not at risk of cancellation, nor that the above routes are at risk of cancellation this time. However, in the absence of any published contingency plans, it is the best we can give.

Update 21 June: BA operated flights between London Heathrow and Doha have been cancelled.  BA123 has been cancelled from 1 July to 6 July.  BA122 has been cancelled from 2 July to 7 July.  Affected passengers will be rebooked onto Qatar Airways.

BA releases 10,000 Club World reward seats for Christmas

British Airways Club World Boeing 747 (Picture by: Stuart Bailey / British Airways)

BA has made another move to curry favour from members of its Executive Club programme.

Hot on the heels of news that some members have been granted free renewal of their Executive Club cards, BA has announced that it has released an additional 10,000 reward seats in its Club World long-haul business class for Christmas 2017.

The additional 10,000 seats are available for travel over a 19 day period from Monday 18 December 2017 to Friday 5 January 2018. They are available to members of the British Airways Executive Club and the Avios programme.
Continue reading “BA releases 10,000 Club World reward seats for Christmas”