BA long-haul – where to next & with what? Winter 2015/16+Back to Forum
Totally agree with those of you who are suggesting a re-focus on the regions.
And I’ll add the elephant into the room ….. The very real possibility of the abolition of APD in Scotland.
With EDI’s excellent connectivity to the North East and to a lesser extent west, could BA make a go of HKG, there’s a big Chinese community in Scotland and the north of England, plus Edinburgh’s financial hub could make it worthwhile.
EDI across the Atlantic I’d have thought was a no brainer…… having said that BA’s model is so LHR centric that I think it highly unlikely, it’s more likely they will use any new slots to increase frequency to established safe markets…….11 May 2015
BA won’t go out of any of the regions Transatlantic. Any routes this way they would get AA to do as their partners for whom logistically probably easier.11 May 2015
@ sparkflyer. Yes it is disappointing BA have still not announced where the 787-9’s will be deployed too. I would say there might be some re-jigging of current aircraft For example the 787-9 is meant to replace the 777 on the not even yet flown KUL route come winter this year.
I think we will definitely see new direct routes to smaller US cities – with the 787’9 likely taking over say the EWR 787 routes and freeing up 787-8’s for new US routes. BA has been amazed at the success of AUS and will be looking to replicate that. Having the might of a huge US domestic partner to market/sell the flights obviously helps. Which is why I also wouldn’t be surprised if we see another Japanese route launched with JAL plugging it from the japan end.
– LATAM. Santiago has been rumoured for AGES. And anyone can see why. Chile has had good economic growth, but also SCL has become somewhat of a major OW hub yet neither LAN or BA fly SCL-LHR. There were also some rumours that the 787-9 would operate a second daily GRU replacing the current few extra flights a week on the 747/777. There are also rumours of frequency increase on the MEX by a switch to 787-9.
Asia – this will be where the most surprises will be I think. CTU has disappointed, that is for sure. I heard a rumour the other day that BKK may be getting the chop altogether. The flight is consistently full. But the yields apparently are dire. Considering the competition and options available via the mid east as well as the customer profile of the BKK route it’s not difficult to see why. I still think Jakarta will happen though. BA came SO close to launching it as a tag onto SIN just a few years ago.
Mid east/Africa – I think we will see a big increase in QR/BA working together. I reckon that will either result in BA launching non stop flights to DOH or canning the route altogether and leaving it to QR.
Australia/NZ – I don’t think we will ever see BA launch another flight to Australia/NZ. Although I would love to!
Africa – as you say Liberia has become ‘ebola free’ and as that was apparently the only reason BA suspended the route I can’t imagine why they wouldn’t recommence.
But all in all will be interesting to see what happens. And with the 787-9’s arriving in SEP something will have to be announced SOON.
And for those lovers of the high tech 767 and it’s luxurious CW cabins – according to the 767 tech crew her life may be expanded beyond the (latest) end of 2015 deadline.11 May 2015
I still think Santiago de Chile (SCL), direct, using a 787 or conceivably 777.
The Chileans have been yammering for the restoration of the LHR-SCL service for years. They’ve got the highest per capita earnings in Latin America and while the population is small (17 million or so), I’m sure the business is there.14 May 2015
Some very interesting thoughts above here.
The 3 cities suggested by RF are plausible. As mentioned earlier, I think Hartford could be an option, but maybe initially by AA 757.
If BA does go for Santiago, I hope it is using 777. The seating on the 787 in economy is just so awful and that will be by far the longest flight on their route network. I think 777 could easily fill, after all AF uses 772/773 every day, so I am sure BA can fill one 3-4 times a week.
Personally a stop in Brasilia would successfully serve both markets, also I think Belo Horizonte, a major Brazilian industrial city, could be good as the companies there are eager to sell their good to markets worldwide, and as only TP go there from Europe, is very underserved!
SenatorGold and Simon S1 thank you for your analysis of Maputo, so I guess that is unlikely. But I maybe be going there later this year and if I do will be eager too hear your tips on being there!
Good to hear from RF that the 767s could stay longer. They are very adaptable aircraft, just refurbished, and ideal for starting new routes into Africa etc.
I am going to guess that the 789s will initially be put on EWR and maybe Austin, (BA are SO cautious) and releasing 788s for the flights RF suggested. Maybe we will find out soon..?14 May 2015
It makes sense to use the B787’s on transatlantic thin routes, that’s what they’re designed for, though sad to read W.Walsh is very happy with the A380’s though doesn’t need any more (than the 12 on delivery) since there are no more suitable routes. BA has 7 additional options and the implication is they won’t be taken up.15 May 2015
if long haul from the regions is an option, should the airline consider India (Mumbai and Delhi) / Pakistan (Karachi) from both Manchester (tapping into the West Yorkshire population hub) and Birmingham (using the 789 perhaps or is that reserved for LHR routes)
another option would be to snaffle the Skymark A380s (at a discount), as well as the second hand Malaysian birds that will be available soon, and either use them to accelerate the retire of the 747s (expanding capacity to Beijing)
Jakarta tagged from Singapore is an option but SQ is very strong and popular on the route (also the in-out service is now operated by an A380, would it be able to sell enough tickets (both from the UK and local traffic) to make that option viable)
Hanoi / Saigon (all the locals still call it Saigon) operated direct from LHR (perhaps split across days, i.e. 4 to Saigon, 3 to Hanoi), competing with the frankly awful Vietnam (although they will have 789 and A350s soon) that’s in to LGW
Slots could be freed following a successful merger with the paddys, moving a couple of lunchtime departures to New York to Dublin (operating a bigger aircraft from LHR to Dublin using the Aer Lingus slots, perhaps one of their A330s)16 May 2015
AisleSeatTraveller a BA employee made the same suggestion (flying long haul again from the regions using 787) on an internal social media site. A manager responded and said basically it’s not going to happen. BA’s business plan is to ‘build on it’s strength at it’s hub’. Other employees replied highlighting that the likes of VS and others are launching long haul routes from other UK ports. Another manager said the reason for this is that VS is slot restricted at LHR so unlike BA has to look for other opportunities to make money. He also highlighted that the VS flights are only going to be operated in the summer, indicating that they are not confident they would turn a profit in the winter on routes from other UK cities. In terms of profitability he said that although BA could perhaps profit on a regional long haul departure the same aircraft could earn more profit flying long haul from LHR and BA hold enough slots to not have to look elsewhere.
Not saying i’m in agreement but there you have it……16 May 2015
As we have already reported, VN is moving from LGW to LHR this summer.
As for the A380s …I’m not sure how easy it would be for one airline to acquire another carrier’s A380s.
Performance is one issue but another is the question of premium seating. Seating in F, J and Y+ (where offered) differs enormously from one airline to another.16 May 2015
Portland I can see the logic of – big tech opportunities there but Nashville and New Orleans? What am I missing about them?
I was wondering if the moves Iran is making on the nuclear front might make Tehran a possibility at some point in the next we months. Ditto Cuba.
1F16 May 2015
How about making the 3 x daily a 7 days per week operation on the Dubai route, better still give us a 4th service and maybe use a 380 if possible. The BA services are always packed. Emirates are trying for a 6th service to LHR, seems weighted the wrong way in favour of the gulfies again.
We understand here in Dubai that VS are considering pulling off the route, that does not leave us ‘workers’ much option especially considring EK are much more expensive when travel is self financed.17 May 2015
New Orleans offers both a mix of leisure and business opportunities which is why I think it is a no-brainer. In terms of business, it acts as a gateway to the Gulf Coast from Mobile to Baton Rouge. A wide range of industries there especially in Aerospace with Airbus final assembly line at Mobile, some research centre in Mississippi and chemical industries in southern Louisiana.17 May 2015