Category Archives: British Airways

British Airways announces two new routes from London Heathrow, also increases Gatwick frequencies

British Airways logo

British Airways (London) has announced that it will serve two new routes from its London-Heathrow hub for Winter 2015/16, with one route ending a 7-year hiatus to and from Iceland.

The British flag-carrier will begin thrice-weekly services between London (Heathrow) and Keflavik (near Reykjavik) from October 2015, and then a twice-weekly service from London (Heathrow) to Salzburg, Austria beginning in December 2015.

Lynne Embleton, BA’s director of strategy and business units, said: “Reykjavik is a new destination for us, and customers will now have the convenience of flying from Heathrow as well as Gatwick to Salzburg.”

BA will also increase the frequencies on its routes from London (Gatwick) to Funchal, Faro, Seville and Turin for the winter 2015/16 season starting on October 27, 2015 and running to March 25, 2016.

The airline will add two flights from London (Gatwick) to Faro on Tuesdays and Thursdays, two flights to Seville on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, two flights to Funchal, Madeira, on Wednesdays and Fridays, and one extra frequency to Turin on Sundays, which will operate between December 13, 2015, and March 20, 2016.

Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock reporting from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: AirlinersGallery.com. Airbus A320-232 G-EUYA (msn 3697) taxies at the London (Heathrow) hub.

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British Airways to add London Gatwick-Vienna service

British Airways (London) will add the London (Gatwick) – Vienna, Austria route on September 17. The carrier will operate six days a week with Airbus A319s according to Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Airbus A319-131 G-EUPE (msn 1193) taxies at London (Heathrow).

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International Airlines Group reports higher earnings in 2014 due to Iberia turnaround

International Airlines Group (IAG) (British Airways, Iberia and Vueling Airlines) (London and Madrid) presented Group consolidated results for the year to December 31, 2014:

IAG period highlights on results:

Fourth quarter operating profit €260 million (2013: operating profit of €113 million) before exceptional items

Revenue for the quarter up 9.9 per cent to €5,015 million, up 5.8 per cent at constant currency

Non-fuel unit costs for the quarter down 0.8 per cent at constant currency

Operating profit for the year to December 31, 2014 of €1,390 million (2013: operating profit of €770 million) before exceptional items

Revenue for the year up 8.0 per cent to €20,170 million and passenger unit revenue for the year down 0.4 per cent at constant currency

Fuel unit costs for the year down 7.8 per cent also down 7.8 per cent at constant currency.

Non-fuel unit costs before exceptional items for the year down 1.9 per cent, down 3.9 per cent at constant currency

Cash of €4,944 million at December 31, 2014 was up €1,311 million on 2013 year end

Adjusted gearing up 1 point to 51 per cent and adjusted net debt to EBITDAR improved 0.6 to 1.9 times

Willie Walsh, IAG Chief Executive Officer, said:

“We’re reporting strong full year results with an operating profit before exceptional items of €1,390 million which is up 80.5 per cent. Total revenue was up 8.0 per cent with non-fuel costs up 7.0 per cent and fuel costs up 0.6 per cent on capacity growth of 9.3 per cent.

“Iberia made an operating profit of €50 million compared to an operating loss of €166 million last year. The airline’s turnaround has been remarkable, both financially and operationally, and we’re very proud of its achievement especially its strong cost discipline. In 2013 we said our intention was for Iberia to breakeven in 2014 and it has fulfilled that promise.

“British Airways’ operating profit increased to €1,215 million up from €762 million last year which shows significant progress towards its long term targets. Vueling made an operating profit of €141 million, compared to an operating profit of €139 million in 2013, with the airline focusing on flexible growth.

“We achieved a strong unit cost performance, down 4.1 per cent, through increased productivity, supplier cost savings and lower fuel unit costs. The latter was boosted by the introduction of more efficient aircraft into our fleet and lower fuel prices in the last quarter of the year. However, the positive effect of the oil price reduction has been partly offset by hedging and significant currency impact.

“In the quarter, we made an operating profit before exceptional items of €260 million which is up from €113 million last year. Revenue for the quarter was up 9.9 per cent. Non-fuel costs were up 10.5 per cent and fuel costs decreased by 0.4 per cent on capacity growth of 5.8 per cent.”

Copyright Photo: Iberia Airbus A321-211 EC-JQZ (msn 2736) taxies at London’s Heathrow Airport.

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British Airways unveils its “GREAT Festival of Creativity in Shanghai” special livery on G-YMML

British Airways 777-200 G-YMML (15-GREAT Festival of Creativity)(Grd) LHR (DAP)(LRW)

British Airways (London) today rolled out at London Heathrow its brand new promotional livery on this Boeing 777-236 ER registered as G-YMML (msn 30313). The airline issued this statement about the new design:

“BA’s paint bay teams have brought a fantastic design, created by Chinese fashion designer Masha Ma, to life.

The Boeing 777-200 is a centrepiece of the airline’s contribution to the GREAT Festival of Creativity in Shanghai.

 

Click on the photo above for the full-size view.

The design by Ma on the Boeing 777-200 aircraft, depicts a bamboo and a rose in an east-meets-west fusion of symbols and artistic styles.

British Airways 777-200 G-YMML (15-GREAT Festival of Creativity)(Logo) LHR (SA)(LR)

The Engineering team used specialist techniques to paint the aircraft with Ma’s design which combines a western impressionistic style with Chinese ink-and-wash painting techniques. The design took 2,472 manhours and 186 individual stencils to apply.

The festival, which runs from March 2 to 4 at the Long Museum in Shanghai, is part of the GREAT Britain campaign aimed at promoting the UK as a world-class destination for trade, tourism, investment and education to generate jobs and growth”.

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Qatar Airways acquires a stake in IAG

Qatar Airways (Doha) has bought a 9.99 per cent stake in British Airways’ owner International Airlines Group (IAG), becoming the company’s largest shareholder.

The move will cement a close commercial relationship between BA and the airline, whose owner, the Qatari government, is a significant investor in Britain.

Willie Walsh, chief executive of International Airlines Group, the BA owner, said in : “We’re delighted to have Qatar Airways, one of the world’s premier airlines, as a long-term supportive shareholder. We will talk to them about what opportunities exist to work more closely together and further IAG’s ambitions as the leading global airline group.”

BA sponsored Qatar’s entry into the Oneworld airline alliance, and they also have a cargo partnership. Qatar has indicated it would seek to extend ties following the investment, which could include codeshares on flights via the Gulf state, allowing the airlines to sell tickets on each other’s planes.

Akbar Al Baker, the Qatar airline’s CEO said: “IAG represents an excellent opportunity to further develop our westwards strategy.”

Qatar Airways is prohibited from owning more than a minority stake in IAG under EU ownership rules and said it does not currently intend to increase its 9.99% shareholding.

Report by Assistant Editor Oliver Wilcock from Manchester.

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Qatar Airways’ second Airbus A380, the pictured A380-861 A7-APB (msn 143) completes its final approach to London’s Heathrow Airport, the home of IAG’s British Airways.

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Will Aer Lingus now accept IAG’s new raised cash bid to acquire the Irish carrier?

Aer Lingus (Dublin) is now expected to recommend a takeover by the International Airlines Group-IAG (London) (British Airways, Iberia and Vueling Airlines) according to a report today by The Irish Times. This change of heart comes after the IAG raised its bid for the flag carrier to a €2.50 ($2.80) a share cash bid. The offer could face opposition from the Irish government. If accepted and approved, Aer Lingus would join the Oneworld alliance.

Read the full report: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo: SPA/AirlinersGallery.com. Aer Lingus controls valuable slots at London’s Heathrow Airport. Airbus A320-214 EI-DEF (msn 2256) completes its final approach to Heathrow.

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