Alaska Airlines expands partnership with British Airways, offers direct flight to US destinations

Alaska Airlines has announced an expansion of its long-standing partnership with British Airways, a founding member of the oneworld alliance, by enabling guests to book nonstop British Airways flights to London directly at alaskaair.com.

This seamless travel experience includes flights between London Heathrow and Alaska’s gateway airports in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, as well as Chicago and New York JFK.

‘We’re excited to add our longstanding partner, British Airways, to our growing portfolio of alaskaair.com book direct airlines,’ said Andrew Harrison, chief commercial officer for Alaska Airlines. ‘London is one the most requested global gateways by our guests and no one serves it better than British Airways and the oneworld alliance.’

British Airways offers significant service to and from London and key West Coast gateways, including:

* Seattle: Two daily flights

* Portland: Daily flight

* San Francisco: Two daily flights

* Los Angeles: Three daily flights

* San Diego: Two daily flights

Additionally, guests can book British Airways nonstop flights from Chicago (three daily flights) and New York JFK (eight daily flights) on alaskaair.com. British Airways tickets purchased on alaskaair.com are for flights beginning June 18 and beyond. Later this year, guests will also be able to purchase Alaska flights connecting to British Airways, along with flights beyond London on British Airways.

‘We are extending our partnership with our fellow oneworld member Alaska Airlines to offer travellers seamless access to British Airways flights to London directly at alaskaair.com,’ said British Airways Chief Planning and Strategy Officer Neil Chernoff. ‘It will enhance the travel experience for our customers, providing convenient connections between London Heathrow and Alaska’s key gateway airports. We look forward to connecting even more travellers between the Pacific Northwest and the UK capital.’

Mileage Plan members earn one mile for every mile flown on British Airways flights booked at alaskaair.com, with 100% elite qualifying miles (EQMs) also awarded. Additionally, flights purchased with the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature credit card earn triple miles, including overseas flights on British Airways.

British Airways launches inaugural winter flights to Tromso, Norway

British Airways has announced the commencement of its first-ever winter flights to Tromso, Norway, set to take off from December 1, 2024. The addition marks a significant milestone, with Tromso becoming British Airways’ northernmost destination worldwide.

Situated within the Arctic Circle, Tromso offers travellers a unique opportunity to experience the captivating beauty of the northern lights, thanks to its prime location within the aurora borealis oval.

With average winter temperatures ranging from 0-degreeC to -5-degreeC, the city provides an ideal setting for a wide range of cold-weather activities, including skiing, mountaineering, and whale watching.

In addition to its natural wonders, Tromso boasts vibrant Christmas markets and iconic seasonal displays, making it a sought-after destination for holiday enthusiasts. The city’s main square, Stortorget, hosts a picturesque market and a stunning Christmas tree, creating a magical atmosphere for visitors.

Neil Chernoff, British Airways’ Chief Planning and Strategy Officer, said: ‘Those who missed the northern lights in the UK need not worry! We are excited to welcome Tromso to our route network – it is a growing winter leisure market thanks to its abundance of cold-weather activities and we’ll be the only premium carrier operating there from the UK. We’ve optimised the schedule for three- and four-night trips, which we know are perfect for a destination like this.’

British Airways offers flights departing from London Heathrow twice a week, on Thursdays and Sundays.

British Airways Holidays offers a range of holiday packages to Tromso, starting from £379 per person for a three-night stay at the Comfort Hotel Xpress Tromso in January 2025. Packages include economy-class return flights from London Heathrow, a 23kg baggage allowance per person, and flexible payment options.

Return flights to Tromso are available for booking, with fares starting from £153. Customers can also transport skiing or snowboarding equipment as part of their checked baggage, provided it meets specified dimensions.

Bookings and more information is available at the British Airways website, www.ba.com.

British Airways launches daily route to Abu Dhabi from London Heathrow

British Airways has recently announced its return to Abu Dhabi after a four-year hiatus.

British Airways will now operate a daily flight from London Heathrow to Abu Dhabi Zayed International Airport throughout the year, using the Boeing 787-9 aircraft during the summer of 2024. This new route enhances the airline’s extensive global network and strengthens connections between the UAE and the UK, catering to travellers whether they are journeying for leisure, business, or to visit family and friends.

Flight BA073 to Abu Dhabi will depart London Heathrow at 22:25, arriving in Abu Dhabi at 08:30 the next day. The return flight to London (BA072) departs at 10:10 and arrives at London Heathrow at 15:20.

Elena Sorlini, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer at Abu Dhabi Airports, said: ‘We extend a warm welcome to British Airways as they start operating at Zayed International Airport with a daily schedule that promises to enrich connectivity and invigorate both business and tourism. Our new award-winning and cutting-edge terminal offers visitors an unparalleled introduction to the vibrant UAE capital, where they will be greeted with Emirati hospitality at its finest.’

Calum Laming, Chief Customer Officer at British Airways said: ‘We are really excited to be celebrating our Abu Dhabi route launch. The new daily flight connects Abu Dhabi with London Heathrow and beyond, providing our customers with another amazing destination within our expansive global network and further growing our connections with the UAE. With four cabins to choose from, including First, we are confident customers will enjoy our exceptional and original British Airways service brought to life by our incredible colleagues.’

British Airways doubles daily flights between San Diego and London

British Airways has announced the expansion of its service between San Diego International Airport (SAN) and London with the introduction of twice-daily flights.

Thirteen years after the launch of daily flights on this route, the growing demand has prompted British Airways to increase the frequency of flights from one to two per day.

Since 2011, British Airways has served approximately 2 million passengers traveling between San Diego and Europe. The market for this route has experienced a remarkable 50 percent growth from 2019 to 2023.

While London remains the final destination for approximately 60 percent of passengers on this route, 40 percent connect to other European cities such as Edinburgh, Dublin, Madrid, Barcelona, Lisbon, Cairo, Rome, and Mumbai.

‘We are looking forward to giving passengers on both sides of the Atlantic more options to fly nonstop between San Diego and Europe, while providing the same comfort and convenience of the popular route with British Airways that we already offer,’ said Kimberly Becker, President and CEO of the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority.

The addition of the second daily flight, which commenced on April 20, is expected to attract more local San Diego-area passengers who currently choose to fly to London from nearby airports. The second daily flight will operate seasonally and will conclude on Oct. 25.

‘We are delighted to launch this second daily flight from San Diego, further supporting the growth of business and leisure travel in the city and demonstrating our commitment to the region,’ said Neil Chernoff, British Airways’ Chief Planning and Strategy Officer.

With the introduction of the second daily flight, the current flight schedule will be retimed. Flights will arrive in San Diego from London at 6:10 p.m. and depart for London at 8 p.m. The new second flight will arrive in San Diego at 3:25 p.m. and depart for London at 5:15 p.m.

Both flights will be operated by British Airways’ Boeing 777 and 787 aircraft.

British Airways commences new service to Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen from Heathrow

British Airways has announced the launch of its new service between London Heathrow and Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen

Located on the Anatolian side of the city, Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen International Airport (ISG) is the gateway into Istanbul’s rich history, culture, shopping and dining.

The new route between London Heathrow (LHR) and Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen (SAW) will operate four times per week on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays on a mix of A320 and A321 aircraft. Return fares start from £368 in Club Europe (British Airways’ business class cabin) and £130 in Euro Traveller (economy).

British Airways’ Head of Corporate Sales in Europe, Elisabeth Ruff, said: ‘As we continue our investment programme into new products, services, and technology, we’re excited to open up even greater connectivity between two of the world’s leading cities, Istanbul and London.’

Berk Albayrak, CEO, Sabiha Gokcen Airport, said: ‘British Airways has become the 45th airline to operate to Sabiha Gokcen and now our passengers can benefit from its extensive global route network. British Airways serves 200 destinations in more than 65 countries and with their large fleet and renowned services, the addition of this route will undoubtedly further enhance the travel experience of our guests.’

Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen has become the latest destination to join British Airways’ network, with the inaugural flight landing on Thursday June 1, 2023. Sabiha Gokcen serves 154 destinations located across 51 countries via flights operated by 45 airlines.

UK holidaymakers opt for staycations and pub visits this summer

With costs rising on foreign holidays and high temperatures this summer, Brits are looking to holiday closer to home and enjoy the Great British Pub as part of their staycation this summer.

As almost 50% of international tourists choose to visit a pub on their trips to the UK, pubs are showcasing their international draw to UK holidaymakers with diverse food menus, newly renovated accommodation and great British hospitality. The call from pubs comes as data shows that the average cost of a family holiday abroad has rocketed over the past few months, with everything from car hire to accommodation rising in price.

Even before the pandemic struck, pubs across the UK were a hugely popular destination of choice for UK holiday makers. In 2019 Brits took 1.7bn day visits, 50 million of which were to a pub, generating £2billion for the economy each year.

Kevin Georgel, Chief Executive of St Austell Brewery, which owns over 170 pubs across the Westcountry, said: ‘People can see the pub as a place for a pint and nothing else, but that couldn’t be further from reality. We’re really proud to serve our beers in our pubs, but we’re also proud to offer menus teeming with locally sourced ingredients and classic Westcountry fare, in stunning locations that need to be seen to be believed.

‘Over the past two years, we’ve really invested in our accommodation for overnight guests too. If people are travelling a few hours, by car or train, we want to make it easy and enjoyable for them to make the most of their staycation and give them a memorable experience. There are so many elements which make Great British Pubs the perfect boltholes for relaxing and exploring new areas across the UK.’

Emma McClarkin, Chief Executive of the British Beer and Pub Association said: ‘We’re all feeling the pinch at the moment with rising costs all around us, but us Brits don’t need to spend money on travelling far, because we are lucky to have a world-renowned cultural institution on our doorstep.

‘We’re encouraging people to get out and explore the UK, and head for pubs not only for a pint but to eat and stay as well. And if you need some inspiration on where to go stayinapub.co.uk showcases pubs with accommodation in beauty spots across the country, from the highlands to the Cornish coast.’

British Airways to offer Aviation American Gin onboard

British Airways and Aviation American Gin have announced a new partnership with the Aviation American Gin launching on board.

The announcement comes as British Airways is set to launch a new route to Portland, Oregon on June 3. Flights will operate five times a week – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. This route will also open up a whole variety of connections for holidaymakers to explore the West coast of America.

Customers flying across the pond and all other long-haul routes will be offered the tipple from the in-flight menu, while short-haul customers will be able to buy it from the on-board Speedbird cafe. The partnership builds on the opening of a brand-new area – the Aviation Gin bar in the airline’s Club Lounge in JFK airport in October 2021.

Founded in Portland in 2006, Aviation American Gin is infused with a blend of botanicals – cardamom, coriander, French lavender, anise seed, sarsaparilla, juniper, and two kinds of orange peel to create a refined gin.

Tom Stevens, British Airways’ Director of Brand and Customer Experience said: ‘Offering our customers a premium experience throughout their journey is important to us. Partnering with Aviation American Gin is another great addition to our on-board service.’

‘We hope our customers join us in celebrating, with a refreshing gin and tonic,’ Gareth Williams, International Brand Director at Aviation American Gin said: ‘We’re so excited to get on board with the UK flag carrier British Airways and take Aviation American Gin to new heights – the sky! Through this partnership, we’re keen to enhance each traveller’s experience with a deliciously refreshing Aviation Gin cocktail for flyers to enjoy on journeys near and far, offering an American twist on this quintessentially British drink!’

Aviation American Gin is also available from British Airways’ US and UK lounges and to purchase from the in-flight shop High Life. 50ml Aviation American Gin is available from the Speedbird cafe priced at £6.

British Airways announces new daytime flight from Newark to London Heathrow

British Airways has announced the launch of a new, daytime flight from Newark Liberty International Airport to London Heathrow – its third daily flight from Newark to London as business travel returns in 2022.

The additional flight, which launches on June 6, will depart at 7.55am from Newark – allowing travellers to spend an extra night in the New York area before departing on business or leisure, or to arrive in the evening in London to spend the night at home or their hotel. The flight will depart Heathrow at 7.10pm, also allowing travellers to spend the entire day in London before flying to Newark.

The airline is also resuming its ‘daylight’ service from JFK in March – a convenient option particularly for business travellers, and customers who prefer to travel during the day. The additional Newark flight offers added convenience for customers living in Manhattan, Staten Island and New Jersey. The flight will operate daily on a Boeing 777-200 with 48 Club World seats, 40 World Traveller Plus seats, and 184 World Traveller seats.

Neil Chernoff, British Airways’ Director of Networks and Alliances said: ‘We are pleased to be launching our third daily flight from Newark, to further strengthen our New York – London schedule. The convenient morning departure is popular with customers who might prefer having an extra night in New York or arriving in London in the evening to start their following day more refreshed.

‘Including American Airlines, we offer the largest and most convenient schedules from the New York area to London and are the only airline or alliance that offers service to and from both major New York and London airports. As we continue to co-locate our New York and London operations with American Airlines, we will provide a more seamless journey for our customers allowing them to access our combined 15 daily departures’

From April 2022, all flights to JFK and EWR from Heathrow on BA and AA will depart out of BA’s Terminal 5, and by next year, all British Airways flights in JFK will depart from AA’s home in Terminal 8.

The new daytime flight is on sale with return fares starting from $690 in World Traveller and $3,195 in Club World. The fares include taxes, fees and carrier charges.

British Airways announces new route from Heathrow to Nuremberg

British Airways has said that it will be introducing a new destination to its Heathrow short-haul network, Nuremberg, Bavaria’s second largest city after Munich.

The airline plans to initially operate four flights per week on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays starting on the March 27, 2022, and then intends to increase the schedule to six per week starting from May 1, 2022 and four times a week in winter, from October 30, 2022 to March 25, 2023. Flights will be operating from London Heathrow Terminal 3.

Neil Chernoff, British Airways’ Director of Networks and Alliances, said: ‘After over 20 months of travel restrictions we know our customers are looking for new and exciting places to visit, so the addition of this route to our short-haul network ahead of the summer season is perfect timing for anyone who would like to plan their trips for the year ahead.

‘Nuremburg offers something for everyone, ranging from sightseeing in the sunshine to exploring the German markets at Christmas, so we hope our customers take full advantage of this new destination to our network.’

British Airways’ return flights to Nuremberg will start from £69 in Euro Traveller and £202 in Club Europe. Or customers can use Avios as part payment, £59 plus 1,000 Avios or £72 plus 24,500 Avios in Euro Traveller and Club Europe respectively.

Customers travelling in the airline’s Euro Traveller (economy) cabin can pre-purchase items from the Speedbird Cafe, in advance of travel, or can order additional snacks and drinks on board the flight directly to their seat using their mobile device. Customers travelling in Club Europe (business class) have access to priority check in, lounges and restaurant style complimentary dining, including items from the airline’s ‘Best of British’ menus.

Last month, British Airways CityFlyer also announced new short-haul routes from London City to Luxembourg, Barcelona, Guernsey, Jersey, Milan and Thessaloniki operating from March 2022.

The airline has also relaunched new gateways to the US, through the Atlantic Joint Business, such as London to Portland and Barcelona to Los Angeles as well as the addition of the islands of Sao Miguel and Terceira to British Airways’ Heathrow short-haul network launching this summer.

British Airways City Flyer offers new European routes for summer 2022

British Airways is launching four new routes across Europe for the coming summer season.

Operating from London City Airport, customers can now book to fly to Barcelona, Luxembourg, Milan and Thessaloniki – adding to BA CityFlyer’s network. Flights to all destinations will operate on BA CityFlyer’s Embraer E190 aircraft. Luxembourg and Milan will operate from March 27, every day of the week. On 18 June, Thessaloniki will launch, operating once a week on Saturday, while on 19 June, Barcelona will operate six times a week – every day apart from Saturday.

A limited number of tickets start from the below fares, based on a return ticket in Euro Traveller to Barcelona with fares from £82; to Luxembourg from £82; to Milan from £104 and to Thessaloniki from £126. Routes to Jersey and Guernsey are also returning following their launch in Summer 2021. Flights will operate on Monday and Friday from June 20 to September 2.

Tom Stoddart, Managing Director of BA CityFlyer, which will operate the new services, said: ‘As customers start to plan their next summer getaway, we wanted to offer new routes to some of the most popular European destinations. Conveniently accessible from London City airport, they are a great addition to our extensive network.’

British Airways has introduced a flexible booking policy allowing customers to exchange their booking for a voucher or move their dates without incurring a change fee if their plans change. British Airways Holidays’ customers also have access to a range of additional flexible booking options, as part of the company’s Customer Promise, including securing a holiday with a deposit from £60pp.