British Airways announces new service to Osaka

British Airways has announced a new service to Osaka next summer as the airline is launching direct flights to Japan’s second largest city.

Starting March 31, 2019, the UK airline will operate a four-per-week service, with flights departing from Heathrow Terminal 5 and landing at Osaka’s Kansai International Airport.

The new service to Osaka will depart from Heathrow at 14:20 hours on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays arriving at Kansai at 09:50 hours the following day. On return, the flight will depart Kansai at 11:30 hours of Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays reaching Heathrow at 15:50 hours. All times are local.

Sean Doyle, British Airways’ Director of Network and Alliances, said: ‘Our partners Japan Airlines and Finnair have demonstrated that Osaka is a hugely popular route with leisure and business travellers alike, so we are excited to launch direct flights from London, giving customers another gateway. Japan is a highly sought-after destination for British tourists and many of the country’s key attractions are within easy reach of Osaka. This new route will also open up more opportunities for companies to explore and build business in the region so we’re expecting this new service to be well received by our customers.’

Hideki Oshima, Japan Airlines’ Executive Officer International Relations and Alliances, said ‘We are extremely excited with the announcement of British Airways’ new route. Not only does it provide more choices and greater convenience for our passengers traveling between Japan and Europe, but it is also great news for the Kansai region. We look forward to serving our mutual customers through our code share service and contributing to the regional economy in Osaka.’

The route will be operated by one of British Airways’ newest aircraft, the Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner, with special return fares from £599 in World Traveller, £999 in World Traveller Plus and £2,499 in Club World available to book now on ba.com and jal.com.

With the new route, the number of daily flights between London and Japan offered as part of British Airways’ joint business with Japan Airlines will increase to 32 per week. British Airways is also adding four cities to its agreement with Japan Airlines, with the BA code being put on flights between Tokyo Haneda and Miyazaki, Kumamoto, Komatsu and Matsuyama. The airline’s Siberian Joint Business partner, Finnair, currently flies direct between Helsinki and Osaka with up to 10 direct services a week.

As part of its expansion plans, British Airways will launch 17 new routes across the globe this year including direct flights to Durban that start next month, the airline said.

British Airways announces more routes from London City

British Airways has announced an expansion plan at London City Airport saying that more aircraft, more routes and more frequencies will be added to the network this winter.

Starting November 11, a new year-round service will be launched to Rome from the Docklands airport, with one-way hand baggage only fares from GBP55. In addition, the airline will add a fifth daily service to the Zurich route on week days. Rome is the first of a number of new routes and extra flights to be announced for next year, the airline said.

Further, four additional Embraer E190 aircraft will join the BA CityFlyer fleet during 2019, bringing the total fleet number to 26 aircraft. These aircraft will add nearly 20 per cent more seats from London City Airport in 2019 and enable the launch of new destinations.

Tom Stoddart, managing director BA CityFlyer, said: ‘It is an exciting time for us at London City Airport. The four new aircraft shows our commitment to giving our customers an even bigger range of destinations and flight times. This growth will see the number of job opportunities in East London increase with direct employment opportunities for pilots, cabin crew and engineers, as well as indirect roles for our various suppliers in and around the airport.’

Luke Hayhoe, general manager commercial and customer, said: ‘It is very positive to continue the year-on year-expansion at London City Airport. We added 13 per cent more capacity in 2018 and will add nearly 20 per cent in 2019. The new route to Rome will increase the number of British Airways’ destinations from London City Airport to 33.’

Richard Hill, Chief Commercial Officer at London City Airport, said: ‘BA CityFlyer is London City Airport’s largest airline partner and this investment in four additional E-Jets demonstrates absolute commitment to its base at London’s most central airport, and continued growth as we enter 2019.

‘An enlarged fleet will mean more choice for tourists and business travellers alike, giving customers more flights to the destinations they love, under the British Airways brand. Introducing a Rome service and adding frequency to Zurich, already one of our busiest routes, keeps London connected to major European cities, and is a real endorsement of the London City proposition by our home-based carrier. We look forward to further new route announcements in the near future.’

British Airways is undertaking £4.5 billion investment for customers over the next five years, which includes the installation of WiFi and power in every seat, fitting 128 long-haul aircraft with new interiors and the acquisition of 72 new aircraft.

British Airways announces expansion to Inverness-Heathrow service

British Airways has announced recently that it is planning to expand its Inverness – Heathrow service from seven to ten flights a week, from March next year.

As per the plan, the airline will operate a double-daily service between Inverness and Heathrow on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays from the week beginning March 25, 2018.

Phyllis Stuart, British Airways’ manager at Inverness said, ‘We’re delighted to be able to offer our customers more flights from the highland capital, offering more seats on the route after a successful first 18 months operating the route.

‘Our new schedule, which will come into operation at the beginning of the summer 2018 flying programme, will mean that on three days of the week, Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, British Airways will offer customers a double daily service between the capital of the highlands and islands and London.

‘We, and our partners at Inverness Airport and the business communities in Inverness and the highland region, have worked tirelessly to encourage business and leisure travellers to use the new route for the benefit of the businesses and individuals in the region.

‘The increased frequency on the route is the result of that partnership and further demonstrates British Airways’ long-standing commitment to the highlands and islands of Scotland.’

Inglis Lyon, managing director of Highlands and Islands Airports Limited (HIAL) said: ‘This announcement is excellent news for the highland community and Inverness Airport.

‘We have worked closely with British Airways to further improve connectivity and the new schedule provides additional two-way connectivity with destinations such as Atlanta, San Diego, Phoenix, Berlin and Mexico City.

‘We can also anticipate more than ten per cent additional inbound passengers to the highlands and islands to experience all the north of Scotland has to offer.’

The new Inverness-Heathrow schedule, which will see a 30 per cent increase in capacity on the route, comes after the airline’s agreement with Scottish airline Loganair of an extended code share agreement, which came into effect at the beginning of September.

Gatwick expands transatlantic network as British Airways adds new routes to Toronto and Las Vegas

British Airways has said that it will add two new transatlantic routes – Toronto and Las Vegas – to its summer 2018 schedule at Gatwick.

With the two new destinations, the total number of new routes introduced at Gatwick in 2017 will increase to six and the total number of routes flying from Gatwick to 71, of which 24 of them long-haul and 47 short-haul.

The new service to Toronto will commence on May 1, with three flights per week, and Las Vegas will be returning with three flights a week from March 27, 2018. The fares to Toronto in World Traveller will start from £453 return and fares to Las Vegas from Gatwick will start from £699 return, including taxes and charges.

The new Toronto service will be British Airways’ first flight to Canada from Gatwick, and comes after the launch of new long-haul routes to Oakland and Fort Lauderdale in the US. The Las Vegas route comes after high demand for the airline’s current service from Heathrow.

Sean Doyle, British Airways’ director of networks and alliances, said: ‘Gatwick has always offered a great range of long-haul destinations, but adding Toronto and Las Vegas to the summer schedule will take the number of transatlantic routes to 21, making Canada, the US and the Caribbean more accessible than ever before.

‘It’s particularly exciting to be adding Canada to the list of places our customers will be able to explore from Gatwick, and we look forward to welcoming our Canadian customers in to London.’

British Airways customers travelling from Gatwick will benefit from the airline’s modern facilities at Gatwick’s south terminal. Passengers travelling in Club World will also have access to a new lounge area at Gatwick, which opened in spring this year.

British Airways offering return flights to European destinations for £35

British Airways has announced return flights to several European destinations for a price of £35, plus 9,000 Avios as part of its Reward Flight Saver scheme.

The airline is offering a return price of £35 plus 9,000 Avios to destinations including Nice, Amsterdam, Zurich, Paris, Dublin, Brussels, Munich and Geneva. In addition, it is offering a return of £35 plus 15,000 Avios to customers choosing to travel to Oslo, Rome, Berlin and Stockholm.

James Hillier, The Executive Club manager, said: ‘We know our Executive Club members love to have a range of ways to collect and spend Avios so we are delighted to be able to offer return flights from just £35 plus 9,000 Avios, including all taxes, fees and charges, to a host of popular European destinations like Paris, Nice and Amsterdam to name a few, so there is plenty of choice for everyone.’

Lisa Harris, Customer Director at Avios, added: ‘It’s easy to collect Avios, not only through British Airways flights, hotel bookings and car hire, but also on day-to-day shopping via the British Airways Avios eStore where you will discover over 800 plus retail partners including some or your high street favourites. With so many easy ways to collect, that next travel adventure really is within touching distance.’

The flights are available for booking, enabling holidaymakers to plan a post-summer getaway. Travellers can book through British Airways’ app or website via the Reward Flight Saver page. To book using Reward Flight Saver, Executive Club members must have collected at least one Avios in the past 12 months.

Reward Flight Saver is available year round, the airline said.

British Airways announces new routes to three European capitals from London City

British Airways has said that it is planning to launch new routes from London City Airport to three European capitals: Paris, Prague and Reykjavik, in October.

With the new services to the three popular European cities, British Airways will fly to 30 destinations from London City this winter. The airline will operate three flights a day to Orly during the week and one a day at weekends, six flights a week to Prague, and two a week to Reykjavik. Flights are available to book on www.ba.com/londoncity, with each way hand baggage only fares to Orly available from £49, to Prague from £49 and to Reykjavik from £59.

The Orly flights are being transferred to London City Airport from Heathrow, offering customers a choice of two London airports from Paris. Flights to Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris will continue to operate from Heathrow, the airline said.

With the launch of Prague and Reykjavik routes, British Airways will be flying to Czech Republic or Iceland from London City for the first time. Reykjavik will be a winter-only service, and will replace flights to Granada, Spain, which will continue to operate as a summer-only service resuming next year.

Luke Hayhoe, British Airways’ general manager customer and commercial, said: ‘Paris and Prague are two great additions to our schedule at London City. Well timed flights and a quick and easy journey through the airport will give business customers another option to reach either capital city, which are of course also two of the most popular leisure destinations in Europe. Reykjavik is a leisure route, and gateway to some of the most dramatic scenery and skiing that Iceland has to offer.’

The new services will be operated using modern Embraer jets with a choice of Club Europe and Euro Traveller cabins and two-wide seating. Customers flying in Euro Traveller can obtain allocated seats and loyalty points that can be used to buy food and drink on board flights or towards other trips. Club Europe customers will also receive complimentary food and drinks on board, free seat selection and on-line check-in, the airline noted.

UK families to spend 13% more on holiday this year

British families are ready to spend 13 percent more on their holiday this year compared to last year, with a family of four now set to spend an average of £3,133 on their annual break, according to new research from ATOL.

The ATOL research also revealed that nearly two thirds of holiday makers (61 per cent) struggle with budgeting on holiday and unexpected holiday costs turn out to be quite huge. A family of four holidaying abroad should set aside an average of £536.80, to cover unexpected costs – the equivalent of two return flights to the Canary Islands or a four day pass to Disneyland Paris, the Civil Aviation Authority noted in a report.

UK holidaymakers are also most likely to pay for additional food and drink outside of their original booking, and by charges when withdrawing money abroad. Nearly a fifth of UK holiday makers (18 per cent) have had to pay for replacement accommodation, and a sixth (16 per cent) have had to pay for new flights.

According to the research, the top 10 unexpected holiday costs are food and drink bill, charges when withdrawing money, parking charges, additional car hire costs, airport transfers and shuttles, excess baggage, airplane food and drink, phone roaming charges, internet charges and sporting equipment hire. The survey of 2,000 UK adults who holiday abroad was conducted in March by Mortar on behalf of ATOL.

Commenting on the research. Andy Cohen, Head of ATOL, said: ‘Holiday costs can mount up quickly, while you’re enjoying your holiday, making it very easy to overspend.

‘Our research also showed the unexpected can happen, and over their lifetimes nearly a fifth of consumers (18 per cent) have had to pay for replacement accommodation and a sixth (16 per cent) have had to pay for new flights.’

Simon Read, personal finance expert, added, ‘Holidays are a great way to relax and switch off, but this can all be ruined if people overspend abroad. While we know budgeting and finances are not a top holiday priority it is important not to lose control completely. Foreign currency, changing exchange rates and excitable family members can all lead to budgeting confusion when you are away.

‘However, by taking simple steps such as checking for ATOL protection or setting a daily allowance, people can manage their budgets better while on holiday and avoid those unexpected costs that can dampen the end of a holiday.’

British Airways to operate new services to Milan from London City and London Stansted

British Airways has recently announced the introduction of new year-round services to Milan, Italy from London City and London Stansted in April, 2017.

From London City Airport, the new routes to Milan’s Linate Airport will start on April 24 and from Stansted Airport on April 29. The airline will operate two flights a day on week days and one a day at weekends from London City and two a week from Stansted. Basic each way fares from London City and Stansted to Milan start from £45 and are available to book on www.ba.com.

Luke Hayhoe, British Airways’ general manager customer and commercial, said: ‘Milan is a very exciting route for us as it will appeal to both business and leisure customers. The new services gives the choice of two alternative London airports with well-timed flights to Linate, which is Milan’s most convenient airport.’

In early February, British Airways announced new summer-only routes from London City to Skiathos, Greece and to Manchester. Including the new Milan route, British Airways will serve 30 destinations from the Docklands airport this summer.

At Stansted, British Airways will introduce flights to three new destinations, including a second Italian city Florence, and increasing frequency on some existing routes. The new service to Milan will be the airline’s ninth route this summer.

All services will operate on modern Embraer 190 jet aircraft, with large cabins and two abreast seating offering all customers the choice of an aisle or window seat. In addition to allocated seats, customers flying in Euro Traveller will earn loyalty points which can be used to buy food and drink on board flights or towards other trips. Meanwhile, Club Europe customers will receive complimentary food and drinks on board, free baggage allowance, free seat selection and on-line check-in.

British Airways also said that Italian airline Meridiana, which currently codeshares on the British Airways services between Linate and Heathrow, will also codeshare on the new services from London City and Stansted.

British Airways launches new Chambery route from Stansted

British Airways has announced the launch of new flight services starting December 17 to the French Alpine city of Chambery from Stansted, offering winter sports a direct access to some of Europe’s top snow resorts tomorrow.

The winter only flights from Stansted to Chambery will operate until April 16, 2017. Flights depart from Stansted at 07.20 hours returning at 10.50 hours am on Saturdays and at 08.20 hours returning at 11.50 hours on Sundays.

The weekend flights will give customers access to snow and ski resorts like Val d’Isere, La Plagne, Meribel and Courchevel. Each way fares are available for £49 on www.ba.com. Other fares that include ski carriage are also available.

Luke Hayhoe, British Airways’ general manager commercial and customer, said: ‘British Airways has enjoyed a very successful first summer at Stansted and we are delighted to launch Chambery, our first winter-only service offering skiers and winter sports enthusiasts a gateway to one of the best Alpine snow regions direct from their doorstep.’

Mats Sigurdson, Stansted’s Aviation Director, said: ‘It’s fantastic news for passengers that British Airways is launching an exciting new route to Chambery to serve the Alpine ski resorts of France. The announcement is a real vote of confidence in Stansted and recognition of the strong demand that exists across the region and will provide passengers with even more opportunities to fly from their local airport this winter.’

The new twice-weekly service to Chambery is in addition to the British Airways service from London City Airport that operates three times a week, which is expected to increase to a daily service over the Christmas holiday period. All British Airways flights include a choice of two cabins, Club Europe and Euro Traveller.

British Airways started flying from Stansted for the first time in May this year, adding a fourth London airport to its network. The airline currently operates from the three other major London Airports, Heathrow, Gatwick and London City.

British Airways adds seven new routes to summer schedule at London Heathrow

British Airways has announced the addition of seven new routes to its summer schedule at London Heathrow.

The airline has added Brindisi, Montpellier, Murcia, Nantes, Pula, Tallinn and Zakynthos, which will be available for booking effective immediately. The first services will commence from March 28, 2017. All destinations will be served by a mixture of A319 and A320 aircraft from Heathrow Terminal 3 and 5.

Flights to the sun-spot of Brindisi, located on the Adriatic Sea, will be operated on Tuesday and Saturday starting June 3, 2017, with fares starting from £85 return. Meanwhile, fares to Murcia, known for its golf courses, will start from £65 return, with flights operating on Tuesday and Saturday starting from March 28, 2017.

Flights to the French city of Nantes – gateway to Brittany and the Loire Valley and famous for Muscadet wines – will launch on March 29, 2017, with return fares starting from £71. The twice weekly flights will be operated on Wednesdays and Saturdays. 

A twice weekly service to Montpellier will start operating from May 3, 2017, offering holidaymakers a break to the beaches of the Mediterranean Sea and the mountains of the Pyrenees, from just £78 return. The twice weekly flights will be operated on Wednesdays and Saturdays. For water sport lovers, British Airways has launched a two-per-week direct service to the Croatian coastal town of Pula starting July 4, 2017. Fares start from £76 per person, operating on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

The Estonian capital of Tallinn, one of the best preserved European medieval cities and listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, will also be added to the airline’s short-haul network from March 28. The flights will be operated on Tuesdays and Saturdays, with fares from £65 per person. The airline has also announced a twice weekly service to Zakynthos, operating on Wednesdays and Saturdays starting June 3, 2017, with fares starting from £81.00.

Neil Cottrell, British Airways’ head of planning, said: ‘We are thrilled to be launching seven new European routes this summer and we are confident these cities will be a big hit with holidaymakers, especially with return fares from just £65 per person.

‘More flights to more cities across Europe is fantastic news for families wanting to get away for summer sun or sightseeing and with so many new routes from London, extra services to Palermo, Mykonos and Reykjavik and convenient flight times our customers have more choice than ever before.’