British Airways revamps flagship Concorde Room

  • Courtesy: British Airways.

British Airways has revamped its flagship Concorde Room at Heathrow Terminal 5, taking inspiration from the very best of British Design.

The refurbishment to the airline’s exclusive lounge included re-upholstering iconic pieces of furniture, and adding new feature pieces to the room, all of which are illuminated by hand-blown glass lighting with bone linen shades and ochre silk linings.

The terrace, which is so popular with travellers thanks to its position overlooking the runway, features luxurious sofas and new elegant loungers.

Mobile phone chargers are also on hand for travellers to ensure their devices are fully charged before they fly.

Carolina Martinoli, British Airways’ director of brand and customer experience, said: “In recent years we’ve invested in our lounges, including new ones in Boston and Gatwick South Terminal and revamped spaces in Edinburgh, Cape Town, Amsterdam, Belfast, Washington, Singapore and Dubai.

“We believe our customers will love the new look and feel of the Concorde Room, in particular the terrace that we have re-designed to create a private oasis in the middle of a bustling airport.”

Customers will still be able to dine before they fly in private booths with a full waiter service. If they wish to unwind ahead of their flight, private cabanas with a day bed and en-suite are available to book.

Next in the schedule for a revamp is British Airways’ lounge at New York’s JFK Terminal 7, along with improvements being made to the customer experience at check-in. Next year Aberdeen and Rome’s lounges will also be revamped, and Geneva will be expanded. Further investment is then planned in San Francisco, Johannesburg and Chicago and Heathrow’s other lounges will be refreshed over the next few years.

Earlier this year British Airways opened its exclusive First Wing at Heathrow T5, a new private check-in area for British Airways’ First, Gold Executive Club and oneworld Emerald customers. Providing a dedicated security channel leading directly into the Galleries First lounge and Concorde Room.

On board the airline’s First cabin, customers can also benefit from bespoke washbags designed by Liberty London exclusively for British Airways as well as regular updates to the in-flight menu and wine list.

The Concorde Room is exclusive to British Airways’ customers travelling in the airline’s First cabin.

Source: British Airways.

British Airways powers its future by turning household rubbish into jet fuel

Courtesy: British Airways.

British Airways has entered a partnership to design a series of waste plants that convert household waste into renewable jet fuel to power its fleet.

The partnership, with Velocys, a renewable fuels company, is part of the airline’s plans to develop long-term, sustainable fuel options.

The first plant will take hundreds of thousands of tonnes of household waste per-year, destined for landfill or incineration, including nappies, plastic food containers and chocolate bar wrappers, and convert it into clean-burning, sustainable fuels. This will contribute to the airline’s commitment to reduce net emissions by 50 per cent by 2050.

As well as helping the airline industry reduce its carbon emissions this initiative will also significantly reduce the amount of waste going to landfill. The UK still sends more than 15 million tonnes of waste per year to landfill sites which not only damages our natural environment but also releases further greenhouse gases affecting climate change.

The planned plant will produce enough fuel to power all British Airways’ 787 Dreamliner operated flights from London to San Jose, California and New Orleans, Louisiana for a whole year. It would be the first plant of this scale. The airline plans to supply its aircraft fleet with increasing amounts of sustainable jet fuel in the next decade.

The jet fuel produced at the plant will deliver more than 60 per cent greenhouse gas reduction, compared with conventional fossil fuel, delivering 60,000 tonnes of CO2 savings every year. This will contribute to both global carbon emissions reductions and local air quality improvements around major airports.

During the past week the Department for Transport has published changes to the Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (RTFO), and for the first time, sustainable jet fuel will be included in its incentive scheme. These changes to the RTFO are designed to promote sustainable aviation. Once implemented, they are expected to provide long term policy support for this market.

Willie Walsh, IAG chief executive, said: “Sustainable fuels will play an increasingly critical role in global aviation, and we are preparing for that future.

“Turning household waste into jet fuel is an amazing innovation that produces clean fuel while reducing landfill.

“From developing innovative operating techniques, to investing in the most modern and efficient aircraft, we have a strong track record in researching, identifying and implementing ways to reduce emissions.

“This partnership continues this tradition, and shows how we are investing in our long-term future – and that of our customers.”

Source: British Airways.

British Airways launches new premium transfer drive service at Heathrow to help customers avoid missing connecting flights

Courtesy: British Airways.

British Airways is introducing a new service called Premium Transfer Drive at Heathrow to ensure that customers who are at risk of missing their connection are able to catch their onward flight.

The new scheme applies to customers travelling on a UK domestic flight, who are connecting on to either a short-haul flight in Club Europe, a long-haul service in Club World (long haul business class) or First, or who are Silver or Gold Executive Club members.

British Airways’ team at Heathrow will track these customers, and where there’s a risk they will miss their connection, will provide an ‘airside’ car transfer between one flight and the next.

They will also send a message to the inbound aircraft, so the cabin crew can inform the customer that a car will be waiting to transfer them, thereby alleviating any stress or worry.

Carolina Martinoli, British Airways’ new director of brand and customer experience, said: “Missing a connection is one of the most stressful situations a customer can experience, so helping them through that journey and keeping them informed is critical. The new premium transfer service will enable us to identify customers who are at risk of missing their onward flight, and proactively arrange to collect them by car, whisking them directly to their next flight.

“We’re already receiving great customer feedback from customers who have benefitted from the new service and as WiFi is introduced on our aircraft, we’ll also be able to use that to communicate directly with customers about their onward flight.”

British Airways is investing £400 million in Club World with an emphasis on improved catering and sleep. At Heathrow a First Wing check-in area with direct security and lounge access has opened, and lounges around the airline’s network are being revamped and improved.

The Club Europe cabin has been introduced on UK domestic services and recent catering improvements have been introduced in Club Europe as well as across all long haul cabins.

British Airways customers can look forward to the latest generation Wi-Fi across British Airways’ long-haul and short-haul fleets over the next two years.

Source: British Airways.

The Air France Boeing 787: 10 destinations to explore the world!

Courtesy: Air France.

In 2017, Air France has already taken delivery of two Boeing 787s and will receive three more by the end of the year. These 5 aircraft will serve 10 destinations around the world.

The Air France Boeing 787, which already serves Cairo (Egypt), London (UK) and Montreal (Canada) from Paris-Charles de Gaulle, will also soon fly to Abidjan (Côte d’Ivoire), Bamako (Mali), Boston (US), Toronto (Canada), Panama City (Panama), Lyon (France) and São Paulo (Brazil).

Flight schedules (in local time) operated by the Boeing 787

Cairo

AF0570: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 14:30, arrives in Cairo at 18:55 Flights operated on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

AF0567: leaves Cairo at 00:40, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 05:30 Flights operated on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

London Heathrow

AF1680: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 07:35, arrives at Londres-Heathrow at 07:50 ; AF1681: leaves Londres-Heathrow at 09:45, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 12:05. Flights operated on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.

Montreal

AF0344: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 13:35, arrives in Montreal at 14:55; AF0345: leaves Montreal at 16:50, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 05:50 the following day. Flights operated daily.

Lyon

AF7640: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 07:50, arrives in Lyon at 08:55 ; AF7641: leaves Lyon at 10:25, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 11:35. Flights operated daily as from 29 May 2017.

Abidjan and Bamako

AF0520: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 10:00, arrives in Bamako at 14:45; leaves Bamako at 15:45, arrives in Abidjan at 17:25. AF0521: leaves Abidjan at 19:30, arrives in Bamako at 21:10; leaves Bamako at 23:10 arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 05:50. Flights operated daily as from 9 October 2017.

Boston

AF0334: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 15:35, arrives in Boston at 17:40; AF0333: leaves Boston at 19:40, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 08:15 the following day. Flights operated daily as from 29 October 2017.

Toronto

AF0356: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 14:10, arrives in Toronto at 16:40; AF0351: leaves Toronto at 18:35, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 08:00 the following day. Flights operated daily as from 20 November 2017.

Panama City

AF0474: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 13:45, arrives in Panama City at 19:05; AF0475: leaves Panama City at 21:10, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 13:10 the following day. Flights operated daily as from 9 December 2017.

São Paulo

AF0456: leaves Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 10:10, arrives in Sao Paulo at 18:05; AF0459: leaves Sao Paulo at 20:10, arrives at Paris-Charles de Gaulle at 11:15. Flights operated on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays as from 5 February 2018.

Source: Air France.

First is flying with British Airways

  • Courtesy: British Airways.

Since The First Wing opened on April 5, the new exclusive check-in area for British Airways’ First, Gold Executive Club and oneworld Emerald customers at Heathrow Terminal 5 has welcomed nearly 200,000* travellers through the dedicated security channel leading directly into the Galleries First lounge and Concorde Room.

That’s around 1,800 customers a day transferring through The First Wing from check-in to the lounge. The smoothness and convenience of the innovation has resulted in great customer feedback and has also reduced the number of customers travelling through the normal security search areas, delivering a benefit for all fliers.

The airline is continuing to invest in other improvements to First, including a refresh of its flagship Concorde Room at Heathrow Terminal 5 to be unveiled in October 2017. The lounge, which is exclusively for First customers will receive an updated look and feel, as well as improvements to the terrace area.

  • Courtesy: British Airways.

Additionally new Liberty London washbags will take to the skies at the end of July. The kits feature prints from Liberty’s vintage textile archive. The ladies’ version features an eye-catching print called ‘Indiana’ flower pattern in a range of blues, while the male washbag showcases a more understated black and grey paisley design called ‘Arundel’.

The gentlemen’s washbag features Refinery’s revitalising moisturiser, lip balm, deodorant stick and shave gel as well as a razor, brush and comb, toothbrush/toothpaste, eye mask, socks, ear plugs and pen. The ladies’ kit includes Aromatherapy Associates triple rose renewing moisturiser, hydrating hand lotion, renewing cleanser and deodorant stick, along with a lip balm, cotton wool pads, toothbrush/toothpaste, hairbrush and pen.

  • Courtesy: British Airways.

Alex Cruz, British Airways’ chairman and CEO, said: “We know that our First customers are used to the very best in life and have very exacting standards. They rightly expect every part of their journey with us to cater to their needs, so we’ve focused on areas that we know matter to them. First Wing enables them to maximise their time, whisking from kerb to lounge through the fast track security channel. And we’ve paid attention to the details that make a difference on board too, through elements such as the updated Liberty washbags and the ability to pre-order a preferred meal.

“From the feedback we’ve received from our First fliers, these changes are making a real difference to their experience, driving great customer reaction and there’s more to come with the revamped Concorde Room at Terminal 5, due to be unveiled this October.”

*: Actual volume of customers through First Wing between April 5 and July 24, 2017 is 199,200.

Source: British Airways.

British Airways: Customers love to join the Club on domestic flights

Courtesy: British Airways.

British Airways’ new business class cabin on domestic UK flights is proving a real hit with nearly 70,000 customers choosing the premium service in the first six weeks of its operation.

Alex Cruz, British Airways’ chairman and CEO, said: “Club Europe is proving incredibly popular with our customers on domestic services. In just a month-and-a-half we’ve had nearly 70,000 take to the skies with us and the feedback we’re getting is great.

“Customers are telling us that they love the new consistency throughout their travels with us. They are getting the smooth, easy experience they want, particularly for those transferring on to our European and long-haul networks. They’re also enjoying the additional benefits, and the improved catering and service that we launched across all our Club Europe services at the same time.”

Customers can take advantage of all the benefits related to the cabin, including lounge access, more personal space to work or relax, complimentary food and drink, dedicated check-in desks and priority boarding and a generous baggage allowance of two cabin bags and two checked bags.

The cabin features a 2:2 configuration with the middle seat free. The seats are bridged with a stylish ‘central console’ table, providing Club customers with a broad, functional space for drinks, snacks and personal devices, freeing up the main table for work or a meal.

The airline has also enhanced the catering for all Club Europe services across its short-haul network, including a new service style, a new crockery design and improved menus more closely tailored to the length of flight and time of day.

The airline’s domestic services around the UK and Ireland with Club Europe include flights between:

  • London Heathrow – Aberdeen, Inverness, Leeds Bradford, Manchester and Newcastle
  • London Heathrow/Gatwick – Belfast
  • London Heathrow/Gatwick/London City – Edinburgh and Glasgow
  • London City – Isle of Man

Prices start from £199 return.

Four hundred million pounds will be spent on Club World with an emphasis on improved catering and sleep, and a new seat in the future. At Heathrow a First Wing check-in area with direct security and lounge access has launched, and lounges around the airline’s network are to be revamped and improved. The Club Europe cabin has also been introduced on UK domestic services and all customers can look forward to the latest generation Wi-Fi across British Airways’ long-haul and short-haul fleets over the next two years.

Source: British Airways.

British Airways: The “Appy way to pay”

Courtesy: British Airways.

Courtesy: British Airways.

Customers on the move with an iPhone can now pay for their British Airways flights using Apple Pay through the airline’s hugely popular app.

Apple Pay automatically stores any payment card details to make it quicker and easier than ever to pay for flights with just a swipe of the finger*.

Entering card payment details every time to book a flight becomes a thing of the past thanks to Apple Pay’s added payment safety and security features.

As well as providing an additional way to pay for flights, the latest update to the British Airways app also has a new upgrade offers feature – for both Apple and Android phone users – which enables customers to take advantage of promotional upgrade offers, through their smartphone.

Sara Dunham, British Airways’ head of marketing and direct, said: “Adding Apple Pay to the British Airways app means more than ever customers can take control of their booking and travel experience.

“Apple Pay gives customers the simplicity and flexibility to pay how they want with absolute peace of mind and it also puts Apple and Android smartphone users in the best position possible to take advantage of any promotional upgrade offers.

“These new features are proof of our continuing investment to innovate in digital and online to make the British Airways app, and ba.com, the best mobile booking tools for our customers on the go.”

Apple Pay and upgrade offers are part of the latest upgrade for iPhone users, which are now available for download from the Apple App Store and on Google Play for Android phones.

Earlier this year British Airways introduced a new bespoke app specially designed for iPad users with exclusive features, such as a new 3D globe to discover British Airways’ destinations and prices and a way for customers to create their own viewing plan for their flight’s movies, TV shows and music.

The airline also launched a new multiple boarding pass feature which allows up to eight individual mobile boarding passes to be viewed on one phone, providing everyone travelling together is on the same booking reference number.

ba.com is also being revamped with beta testing of new technology to deliver an even smoother and simpler booking experience, and make it seamless to use whether on a computer, tablet or smartphone

ba.com is viewed by over half a million unique users every day, using it to inspire, plan, and manage their trips around the world while use of British Airways’ Mobile Boarding Pass has grown by more than 650 per cent in the last three years.

Editor’s Note:

*: Apple Pay is currently available for UK billed cards and for British Airways flights departing from all UK airports. It will be rolled out to include customers departing from other airports flying to the UK over the coming months.

Source: British Airways.