We receive a lot of search enquiries from readers regarding what type of aircraft is due to operate on their flight, so this page we’ve sought to set out an overview of what different type of aircraft BA operates and how it makes a difference to the seating configuration and in-flight experience.
Whilst the vast majority of passengers choose flights according to schedule and price, it is of course useful to know what to expect in advance.
In summary by airport:
London City & London Stansted
All short-haul BA flights are operated using Embraer E170 or E190 aircraft in a 2-2 configuration in both EuroTraveller and Club Europe cabins.
The one exception is that some flights may be occasionally operated using Saab aircraft wet-leased from Eastern Airways.
BA’s daily service to New York JFK (BA1/BA2) is operated by an all business class Airbus A318 in a 2-2 configuration.
All short-haul flights are operated using Airbus A320 aircraft in a 3-3 configuration in EuroTraveller and a 2-2 configuration in Club Europe.
All long-haul flights are operated using Boeing 777 aircraft in either a three class (Club World, World Traveller Plus, World Traveller) configuration or a four class (First Class, Club World, World Traveller Plus, World Traveller). The Boeing 787, 747 and Airbus A380 do not operate at Gatwick.
BA is due to reconfigure selected Boeing 777s to increase seat density later in 2017.
Almost all short-haul flights are operated using either Airbus A319, A320 and A321 aircraft.
BA does have a decreasing number of Boeing 767s which operate on a small number of routes such as Larnaca and selected flights to high volume destinations such as Edinburgh, Frankfurt and Stockholm. The Boeing 767 should be retired from the BA fleet by the end of 2017.
BA does also operate long-haul aircraft on selected flights between London Heathrow and Madrid. This is so BA can transfer large volumes of cargo to Iberia which is owned by the same parent company, International Airlines Group.
At London Heathrow, BA operates the Airbus A380, Boeing 747, Boeing 777-200, Boeing 777-300, Boeing 787-800, Boeing 787-900.
The Airbus A380, Boeing 747, Boeing 777-300 and Boeing 787-900 all operate in a four class (First, Club World, World Traveller Plus and World Traveller) configuration. The Boeing 787-800 operates in a three class configuration.
As at 31 December 2016, BA has 12 Airbus A380s in service. It operates on selected flights to Miami, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington, Hong Kong and Singapore. BA has expressed an interest in acquiring more, but these are likely to be leased second hand aircraft so that it can easily adjust capacity in a downturn.
BA has 36 Boeing 747s in service. This number will be 23 by 2020. It operates two main versions with either 52 or 86 business class seats, all in a four class configuration. Whilst not the most modern aircraft, it does an efficient job on high volume routes to the North Atlantic. It has largely been withdrawn from longer range routes to Latin America and Asia. BA is likely to be one of the last passenger operators of the Boeing 747 in the world.
BA has 58 Boeing 777s in service. Whilst it never captured the hearts of passengers (we find it too noisy to start with) airlines like it and it is the mainstay of BA’s long-haul fleet.
BA has 8 Boeing 787-800s in service. It operates on “thin” routes with relatively low business class demand such as Calgary, Hyderabad and Montreal.
BA has 16 Boeing 787-900s in service. It operates in a four class configuration across the network to North America, Latin America and Asia. These include Abu Dhabi, Kuala Lumpur, San Jose and Santiago.
BA has orders for a further 18 Boeing 787 aircraft. It also has 18 Airbus A350-1000 aircraft on order, with options for a further 18 aircraft.