Entries in Gatwick (14)

Saturday
Jun252011

EasyJet starts route between London-Gatwick and Catania on Sicily

Starting today, the United Kingdom's popular budget airline EasyJet will fly three times a week between London's Gatwick Airport (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) and Vincenzo Bellini Airport (IATA: CTA; ICAO: LICC) on the eastern coast of the Italian island of Sicily.  The flights will operate in each direction on Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday, according to the route's timetable, available on the airline's official website.  The route will be flown with the Airbus A319-100, according to results returned by the airline ticket booking engine at www.kayak.com/flights.

EasyJet is the most popular airline for leisure travel, based in the United Kingdom.  Its largest hub is Luton Airport (IATA: LTN; ICAO: EGGW), 35 miles (57 kilometers) north of London.  It was established in 1995, and based its business model on the one used by the American carrier, Southwest Airlines.  One aspect of the budget airline business model is exclusive use (or at least very heavy use) of a single aircraft model.  Southwest, for example, is by far the world's largest operator of the Boeing 737, flying more than 550 of them, and having 130 more on order as of this posting.  EasyJet is the world's largest operator of the Airbus A319.  As of this posting, EasyJet operates more than 150 of the A319, in a fleet of fewer than 200 planes.

[To the right is a photograph of the 100th Airbus A319 delivered to EasyJet, landing at Bristol Airport (IATA: BRS; ICAO: EGGD) in special livery, in September 2008.]

related stories

Sunwing starts Toronto-Lisbon; EasyJet cuts London-Helsinki (June 22, 2011)

U.K.-based easyJet will debut a new ash detector (June 5, 2010)

original stories

EasyJet LGW-CTA timetable (EasyJet)

Easyjet Launches Catania - London Gatwick in June 2011 (http://airportsinitaly.blogspot.com)

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Friday
Jun242011

Hellenic Imperial to start Gatwick, JFK today; Kuwait tomorrow

The Greek airline Hellenic Imperial Airways is flying four times a week between its hub at Eleftherios Venizelos Airport (IATA: ATH; ICAO: LGAV) in Athens, and Kennedy International Airport in New York (IATA: JFK; ICAO: KJFK), starting today.  The route will be operated with the Airbus A340-300.  It is scheduled to depart from Athens at 5:30 in the afternoon local time, and arrive in New York at 9:30 in the evening, local time.  It is scheduled to depart New York at 11:30 in the evening local time, and arrive back in Athens at 5:00 in the afternoon the following day, local time.  The creation of this route makes Hellenic Imperial the only airline based in Greece to currently operate its own aircraft, non-stop, to the United States.

The airline will operate from Terminal 1 at Kennedy International.

Hellenic Imperial also announced that, starting today, it will fly thrice weekly between Athens and Gatwick Airport (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) south of London.  This route will be also operated with the Airbus A340-300.  Initially, the round-trip service will be operated three times a week, but this will be increased to six over the next few months, according to the U.K.-based Online Regional Travel Group.

Additionally, starting tomorrow, Hellenic Imperial will fly between Athens and Kuwait (IATA: KWI; ICAO: OKBK), the capital of the eponymous Middle Eastern nation.  According to www.flight965.com, this round-trip service will operate two times a week.  It did not give any further details.  When these routes were first announced, the Athens-London round trip was first scheduled to commence on July 1.  But the start date of this route was changed to June 24, to match the start date for Hellenic Imperial's Athens-New York route.

The Dutch airline Arkefly starts non-stop twice-weekly service between Schiphol Airport (IATA: AMS; ICAO: EHAM) in Amsterdam and Miami International Airport (IATA: MIA; ICAO: KMIA) in the American state of Florida today, according to a reader blog at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer website.  The route will be flown with the Boeing 767-300ER.

The British budget airline EasyJet also restarts a seasonal service today between mainland Spain and the Canary Islands.  It operates four times a week, on Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, according to a timetable printed on EasyJet's website.  It operates between Barajas Airport (IATA: MAD; ICAO: LEMD) in Madrid, and Lanzarote, the furthest east of the Canary Islands (IATA: ACE; ICAO: GCRR).

original stories

Hellenic Imperial Gatwick-Athens (www.countryconnect.co.uk)

Hellenic Imperial to launch Athens - London Gatwick late-Jun 2011 (www.airlineroute.net)

New scheduled route between Athens - New York to start on June 24th, 2011 (Hellenic Imperial Airways)

Hellenic Imperial Airways plans Athens - New York JFK launch from late-June 2011 (www.airlineroute.net)

Hellenic Imperial Airways to start visiting Kuwait! (www.flight965.com)

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Thursday
Feb172011

Air Berlin adds London Gatwick to its network

Earlier this month, the Germany-based airline Air Berlin made its first flights to Gatwick Airport (IATA: EGKK; ICAO: LGW), south of Central London.  Germany's second-largest airline now flies non-stop between Hannover-Langenhagen Airport (IATA: HAJ; ICAO: EDDV) and Gatwick, and also non-stop between Nuremberg Airport (IATA: NUE; ICAO: EDDN) and Gatwick.  From Hannover, the new non-stop round trip will operate twice daily through the week (Monday through Friday inclusive), and once on Saturday.  The round trip from Nuremberg will operate twice daily through the week, and once on Sunday.

This is a seasonal route which will be suspended indefinitely this coming October.

Air Berlin is located in the North Terminal at Gatwick.  Air Berlin now has a permanent presence at two London area airports, the other being Stansted (IATA: STN; ICAO: EGSS) northeast of the city, which connects travelers non-stop to three other German destinations.

related stories

Air Berlin will commence year-round JFK routes this coming fall (February 3, 2011)

Air Berlin starts flying between Berlin and Dubai non-stop (November 11, 2010)

American Airlines and Air Berlin codeshare is in effect (November 8, 2010)

Air Berlin begins Winter 2011 route to Spain's Costa Blanca (November 4, 2010)

original story (Air Berlin)

Saturday
Dec182010

London Gatwick suspends flights due to heavy snow, others delayed

One of the larger snowfalls western Europe has seen in a long time forced Greater London's Gatwick Airport (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) to close its runway, suspending all flights in to or out of the facility indefinitely.  The airport's website currently notes that British Airways, which uses the facility as a hub, has cancelled all "domestic and European" Gatwick flights today (coming and going) between the hours of 10:00 in the morning and 5:00 in the afternoon, local time.

The airport's website asks passengers with plans to travel through Gatwick soon, to check with their operating airline for details on the delay or cancellation of their flight.  The BBC reported that "regulations require [Gatwick] to suspend flights if snow lies thicker than 3cm on the ground."  Up to 20 centimeters of snow (8 inches) is forecast for some places in and near London, according to the BBC.

Greater London's busiest airport, Heathrow (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL), also expects that it might have to suspend flights because of the weather, according to Yahoo News.  In addition, other airports throughout northwestern Continental Europe are faced with cancellations and delays due to snow.

original stories

Heavy snow hits air travel, roads across Europe (Yahoo News)

Heavy snowfall closes runway at Gatwick Airport (BBC)

Thursday
Sep232010

British Airways resolves Iberia merger concern over deficit

Earlier today the largest airline based in Spain, Iberia Airlines, cleared another obstacle to its anticipated merger with British Airways (BA).  Iberia announced that it was happy with British Airways' plan for dealing with its 3.7 billion GBP pension deficit (4.36 billion EUR; 5.8 billion USD).  The United Kingdom's highest-profile airline showed Iberia how it plans to put 330 million GBP (388.55 million EUR; 517.67 million USD) annually into pension funds for the next sixteen years.

The anticipated merger would unite the two airlines under the same holding company, called International Airlines Group.  However, each of the two airlines would retain its long-established logos and branding schemes.  British Airways CEO Willie Walsh would become CEO of International Airlines Group, while Iberia CEO Antonio Vasquez Romero would become Chairman of the Board.  The holding company's operational headquarters would be in London, and its corporate headquarters would be in Madrid.  Iberia claims the merger will allow visitors from Europe to obtain inexpensive airfare to Central America.  The website www.beatthebrochure.com reports that the merger will make available "a vast array of services offering cheap flights" between destinations all over the globe.

British Airways was formed in 1974 with the merger of the British Overseas Airways Corporation and British European Airways.  It is the United Kingdom’s highest-profile airline, and is headquartered very near its main hub Heathrow Airport (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL) in the London borough of Hillingdon.  British Airways flies a fleet of 237 aircraft to destinations on all six permanently inhabited continents, and also maintains a hub at Gatwick Airport (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) southeast of London.

Iberia Airlines is the Spanish flag carrier, and was founded in 1927.  It is based in the national capital of Madrid.  Iberia maintains its largest hub at Barajas Airport in Madrid (IATA: MAD; ICAO: LEMD).  Spain's second-largest city Barcelona is a focus city for the airline.  Iberia flies 116 aircraft to 120 destinations in Europe, Asia, Africa, North America, and South America.

related stories

DOT grants anti-trust immunity to BA-Iberia-AA alliance (July 22, 2010)

BA-Iberia merger approved by the EU (July 14, 2010)

original story (www.beatthebrochure.com)

Saturday
Jun052010

U.K.-based easyJet will debut a new ash detector

Yesterday, the United Kingdom-based low-cost airline easyJet announced via its website that it will soon debut an ash detection device called the Airborne Volcanic Object Identifier and Detector, or “AVOID.”  It was invented by a senior scientist at the Norwegian Institute for Air Research, and will be put to use on an Airbus A340 test flight within two months.

AVOID uses infrared technology to enable pilots to see an ash cloud as far away as 100 kilometers (50 nautical miles), between altitudes of 5,000 feet and 50,000 feet.  AVOID is said to work similarly to the weather radar instruments already present on commercial airliners.

The low-cost carrier easyJet was founded in 1995.  It flies more of the 100 most popular routes in Europe than any other airline, and it was the United Kingdom’s most popular airline in 2009, carrying 46 million passengers that year, according to its website.  Its largest hub is Gatwick Airport, 28 miles (46 kilometers) south of central London (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK). Its headquarters is at Luton Airport, 30 miles (50 kilometers) north of central London (IATA: LTN; ICAO: EGGW).

Comments on this development, from the Chief Executive of easyJet, Andy Harrison; Dr. Fred Prata, the inventor of the AVOID system; and Andrew Haines, Chief Executive of the U.K.’s Civil Aviation Authority, can be read in the original article below.

related stories

The British cruise industry has benefited from eruption and strikes (May 31, 2010)

In Europe, ground transportation bookings are up significantly (May 21, 2010)

Airlines now criticizing British models of predicted ash movement (May 17, 2010)

Volcanoes in Iceland could affect aviation for decades  (May 17, 2010)

Heathrow and Gatwick closed as of 1:00 A.M. local time Monday (May 16, 2010)

Keflavík Airport is closed again due to volcanic ash (May 14, 2010)

Eyjafjallajökull damage report, and spectacular new video (May 13, 2010)

Keflavík and others might close temporarily tomorrow (May 7, 2010)

The spread of volcanic ash from Eyjafjallajökull over time (May 4, 2010)

original stories

easyJet Unveils Ash detector to End Large-Scale Disruption (easyJet)

Easyjet to Test Volcanic Ash Detectors on Its Aircraft (Aviation International News Online)

Friday
Jun042010

British Airways will expand its immediate-term flight schedule

On Tuesday, British Airways announced via its website that it will once again fly a greater number of originally scheduled flights than what it later predicted it would fly in light of threatened strike action by Unite the Union.  British Airways cabin crew employees, represented by Unite the Union, continue to show up for work in greater numbers than what the airline initially anticipated that they would.  The third of three scheduled strikes will commence tomorrow, and will run through next Wednesday, June 9.  The airport chiefly affected by the strike action will again be British Airways’ main hub London Heathrow (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL).  Heathrow is the U.K.’s busiest airport.

In light of the planned series of strikes, British Airways had initially planned to fly sixty percent of its long-haul schedule throughout the planned strike series, ending June 9.  When more cabin crew employees turned out for work than the airline expected, that percentage was increased to seventy percent for the second strike (May 31 through June 4, inclusive).  British Airways announced Tuesday that this percentage will again be increased for the third five-day strike (June 5 through June 9, inclusive), to eighty percent.  In light of the planned series of strikes, the airline had initially planned to fly fifty percent of its short-haul schedule throughout the planned series of strikes.  That percentage was increased to fifty-five percent for the second strike.  British Airways announced Tuesday that this percentage will again be increased for the third five-day strike, to sixty percent.

Today is the final day of Unite’s second of three planned strikes against the U.K.’s flag carrier.  Once again, according to its website, British Airways does plan to fly all flights with other carriers that have a British Airways codeshare number.  And once again, flights to and from London Gatwick (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) and London City (IATA: LCY; ICAO: EGLC) will not be affected.  In the announcement released Tuesday, British Airways expressed the possibility of adding to this schedule depending on the number of cabin crew employees that show up to work during the final scheduled strike.

British Airways was founded in 1973, from the merger of the British Overseas Airways Corporation and British European Airlines.  It is headquartered in the borough of Hillingdon in London, near Heathrow.  Unite is a British and Irish trade union formed in 2007 with the merger of Amicus and the Transport and General Workers’ Union.

related stories

British Airways will expand its immediate-term flight schedule (May 26, 2010)

Unite the Union begins strike series against British Airways (May 24, 2010)

The Unite strikes against British Airways are back on (May 21, 2010)

Unite is barred from going forward with BA strike action (May 18, 2010)

British Airways has released its contingency plan for the first strike (May 15, 2010)

British Airways and cabin crew union are trying to avert strikes (May 12, 2010)

original story (British Airways)

Wednesday
May262010

British Airways will expand its immediate-term flight schedule

Today, British Airways announced that next week, it intends to fly a greater number of originally scheduled flights than what it later predicted it would fly in light of the second of three anticipated cabin crew strikes by Unite the Union.  This decision was made in part because this week, a greater number of British Airways’ cabin crew employees have shown up for work than what the airline anticipated.  The second strike is scheduled to run Monday through Friday of next week.  The airport chiefly affected by these decisions by British Airways is its main hub London Heathrow (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL).  Heathrow is the U.K.’s busiest airport.

In light of the planned series of strikes, the airline had originally planned to fly sixty percent of its long-haul schedule.  But because of the higher than expected number of cabin crew employees that have shown up for work this week, that percentage has been increased to seventy for next week’s strike.  In light of the strikes, British Airways had originally planned to fly fifty percent of its short-haul schedule.  But that percentage has been increased to fifty-five percent for next week’s strike.

Today is the third day of Unite’s first of three planned strikes against the U.K.’s flag carrier.  However, British Airways has announced no plans via its website to increase passenger capacity for the remainder of this week.  According to its website, the airline does plan to fly all flights with other carriers that have a British Airways codeshare number.  Flights to and from London Gatwick (IATA; LGW; ICAO: EGKK) and London City (IATA: LCY; ICAO: EGLC) will not be affected next week.  British Airways hopes to be able to add to this schedule, presumably depending on the number of cabin crew employees that show up for work during the remaining scheduled strikes.

British Airways was founded in 1973, from the merger of the British Overseas Airways Corporation and British European Airlines.  It is headquartered in the borough of Hillingdon in London, near Heathrow.  Unite is a British and Irish trade union formed in 2007 with the merger of Amicus and the Transport and General Workers’ Union.

related stories

Unite the Union begins strike series against British Airways (May 24, 2010)

The Unite strikes against British Airways are back on (May 21, 2010)

Unite is barred from going forward with BA strike action (May 18, 2010)

British Airways has released its contingency plan for the first strike (May 15, 2010)

British Airways and cabin crew union are trying to avert strikes (May 12, 2010)

original story (British Airways)

Monday
May242010

Unite the Union begins strike series against British Airways

At midnight local time (7:00 in the evening yesterday, EDT) Unite the Union, which represents the cabin crew employees of British Airways, commenced the first of three planned strikes against the United Kingdom's highest-profile airline.  As a result, British Airways must begin coping with the economic effects of the inevitable cancellation of a significant minority of their long-haul and short-haul flights, to and from the airline's main hub, Heathrow Airport (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL).  Unite was initially barred from striking, by a High Court judge.  But on appeal, that ruling was overturned and the series of scheduled strikes was allowed to proceed.  British Airways expects that despite the strike, sixty percent of long-haul flights and fifty percent of short haul flights in to and out of Heathrow will take place as normal.  However, it has resorted to leasing planes, pilots, and cabin crew members from other airlines to do what it can to make up for the personnel shortage caused by the strike.

"Jobs, pay, and working conditions" are the three main, long running issues of contention between British Airways and Unite the Union, the BBC reported this morning.  British Airways flights to and from Gatwick Airport (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) and London City Airport (IATA: LCY; ICAO: EGLC) will operate as normal.  The airline does not operate regularly scheduled flights into Stansted (IATA: STN; ICAO: EGSS) or Luton (IATA: LTN; ICAO: EGGW).

British Airways was founded in 1973 with the merger of the British Overseas Airways Corporation and British European Airways.  Unite the Union was founded in 2007 with the merger of Amicus and the Transport and General Workers' Union.  It represents workers in both the United Kingdom and the Irish Republic, and is the United Kingdom's largest union.

related stories

The Unite strikes against British Airways are back on (May 21, 2010)

Unite is barred from going forward with BA strike action (May 18, 2010)

British Airways has released its contingency plan for the first strike (May 15, 2010)

British Airways and cabin crew union are trying to avert strikes (May 12, 2010)

original story (BBC)

Friday
May212010

The Unite strikes against British Airways are back on

Unite the Union have won their appeal of the recent High Court decision barring them from striking against British Airways.  As a result, what was originally planned to be the second of four strikes against British Airways, involving cabin crew employees of the U.K. flag carrier, will commence next Monday, May 24, and will cease on Friday, May 28.  A representative of Unite hinted at even more strikes to come (barring some kind of settlement with British Airways), but acknowledged that such action would still have to be voted on by the union.  Representatives from British Airways expressed confidence that the airline would still be able to fly as many as 70 percent of the originally scheduled flights during the strike period set to begin next Monday.  This prediction by the airline relies upon enough cabin crew employees ignoring Unite’s call to strike.

British Airways still plans to run “a full programme” at Gatwick Airport (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) and at London City (IATA: LCY; ICAO: EGLC) next week.  The airline estimates that its operations of long haul flights at its hub, Heathrow Airport (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL), will be cut to 60 percent of the regular schedule.  It estimates that its operations of short haul flights will be cut to 50 percent of its regular schedule.

British Airways was founded in 1973, with the merger of the British Overseas Airways Corporation and British European Airways.  Unite the Union serves workers in both the United Kingdom and the Irish Republic.  It was founded in 2007 when Amicus merged with the Transport and General Workers’ Union.  In 2008, Unite signed an agreement to merge with the North American union United Steelworkers.

related stories

British Airways has released its contingency plan for the first strike (May 15, 2010)

British Airways and cabin crew union are trying to avert strikes (May 12, 2010)

original story (Daily Telegraph)

Monday
May172010

Airlines now criticizing British models of predicted ash movement

The United Kingdom’s Daily Telegraph reports that airlines forced to cancel hundreds of flights over the past several days because of the movement of volcanic ash, are now critical of scientific models used to predict where that ash will go next.  These criticisms came directly in the wake of the nightlong closure of the United Kingdom’s two busiest airports by passengers, Heathrow (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL) and Gatwick (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK).  The CEOs of the United Kingdom flag carrier British Airways and the Irish low-cost carrier Ryanair, and also the managing director of Thomson Airways, the U.K.’s third-largest carrier by passengers carried, concurred that the model now in place is producing inaccurately ominous results.

British Airways chief executive Willie Walsh said flatly, there was “no evidence” of an ash cloud over London during the time the region’s two largest airports were closed this morning.  Michael O’Leary of Ryanair called the scientific model that prompted the closures “outdated, inappropriate, and entirely imaginary,” and current Volcano Concentration Charts, “substantially fictitious.”  Mr. O’Leary pushed for a total rejection of the model favored by the U.K.’s Civil Aviation Authority, and for acceptance of the American scientific model, which he described in precisely the opposite manner.  Chris Browne of Thomson Airways offered probably the mildest criticism, calling only for more efficient communication between decision-makers, and emphasizing safety.

Heathrow and Gatwick both reopened at 7:00 this morning local time (2:00 this morning EDT).  London City Airport (IATA: LCY; ICAO: EGLC) was also forced to close for six hours earlier today (local time) during the time when airspace over central London was closed to all aircraft, regardless of departure point or arrival point.  London City is now operating with only limited interruption according to its website.  The two suburban airports Luton (IATA: LTN; ICAO: EGGW) and Stansted (IATA: STN; ICAO: EGSS) did not close this morning.  However, both now caution air travelers of possible cancellations throughout today.  All Greater London airports advise air travelers to keep close contact with their operating airline for specific updates.

British Airways was founded in 1973 when the British Overseas Airways Corporation and British European Airways merged.  Its main hub is Heathrow.  Ryanair was founded in 1985 as a low-cost alternative, and has hubs at Stansted and Dublin Airport (IATA: DUB; ICAO: EIDW) in Ireland.  Thomson Airways is the product of a merger among three airlines, the oldest of which was founded in 1962.  It maintains fifteen equal hubs throughout the U.K. and the Irish Republic.  The Civil Aviation Authority is directly analogous to the American agency called the Federal Aviation Administration.

related stories

Heathrow and Gatwick closed as of 1:00 A.M. local time Monday (May 16, 2010)

Keflavík Airport is closed again due to volcanic ash (May 14, 2010)

Eyjafjallajökull damage report, and spectacular new video (May 13, 2010)

Keflavík and others might close temporarily tomorrow (May 7, 2010)

The spread of volcanic ash from Eyjafjallajökull over time (May 4, 2010)

original story (Daily Telegraph)

Sunday
May162010

Heathrow and Gatwick closed as of 1:00 A.M. local time Monday

The busiest and second-busiest airports in the United Kingdom are both closed for the night.  The closures are due to renewed concern about the levels of ash in the air, from the continued eruption of Eyjafjallajökull, the volcano in south-central Iceland whose eruption brought all commercial air traffic in Europe to a standstill for several days last month.  These closures will follow a day of frustration for many air travelers in North West England, where Manchester and Liverpool each closed its own major airport today.  The ash cloud is estimated to move south and settle in over Greater London during Monday and Tuesday.  It is estimated the ash cloud will have moved on through London by Wednesday.

The United Kingdom’s two busiest airports, Heathrow (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL), and Gatwick (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) are scheduled to be closed from 1:00 Monday morning to 7:00 Monday morning local time (8:00 Sunday evening to 2:00 Monday morning, EDT).  Officials at both airports advise travelers who are scheduled to fly during the night to contact their airline for further information.

London City Airport (IATA: LCY; ICAO: EGLC) the one nearest to the center of The Metropolis, reports that London airspace is entirely closed from midnight to 6:00 Monday morning, local time.  Suburban Luton Airport (IATA: LTN; ICAO: EGGW) does not give any indication that it intends to close at this time.

Suburban Stansted Airport (IATA: STN; ICAO: EGSS) also does not yet plan to close.  But all advise air travelers to keep close contact with the operating airlines of their flights for updates.

related story

Eyjafjallajökull damage report, and spectacular new video (May 13, 2010)

original story (www.breakingtravelnews.com)

original story (CNN)

original story (BBC)

update from the BBC (BBC)

Saturday
May152010

British Airways has released its contingency plan for the first strike

Yesterday, British Airways posted information to its website about the percentage of regularly-scheduled flights during the first strike period that will operate despite the strike, and which flights those are.  As reported here early Wednesday morning EDT, Unite, the union of cabin crew employees staging the strikes, scheduled for later this month and into the first days of June, has announced initial strike dates of May 18 to May 22, inclusive.

On the web, British Airways includes flights originating on May 23 in its contingency plan for the first strike, even though that is not a scheduled strike date.  Travelers with the United Kingdom flag carrier whose itineraries during the first strike period involve either London Gatwick (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK) or London City (IATA: LCY; ICAO: EGLC) will not be affected during the first strike period.  All flights departing from or arriving at one of those two airports will operate despite the strike.

London Heathrow (IATA: LHR; ICAO: EGLL), British Airways’ main hub, the newest data from the airline indicate that it will operate “more than 60 per cent” of long haul flights departing from or arriving at Heathrow, and will operate “more than 50 per cent” of short haul flights departing from or arriving at Heathrow.

(This updates information reported here, that British Airways would run all short haul flights to and from Heathrow as scheduled.  The recent report on British Airways' website is not clear about which itineraries qualify as "short haul," and which qualify as "long haul.")

British Airways did not elaborate on the status of its flights during the first strike period not involving any of the three abovementioned airports.  Specifics on which flights involving which airports will fly during the second, third, and fourth scheduled strikes are forthcoming.  British Airways’ website has the latest information on the British Airways cabin crew union strike, as does the website of Unite.

British Airways was founded in 1973, from the merger of the British Overseas Airways Corporation and British European Airways.  It is headquartered in the borough of Hillingdon in London, near Heathrow.  Unite is a British and Irish trade union formed in 2007 with the merger of Amicus and the Transport and General Workers’ Union.  In 2008, Unite signed an agreement to merge with the North American union United Steelworkers.  Both unions will retain their current branding schemes and leadership.

related stories

British Airways and cabin crew union are trying to avert strikes (May 12, 2010)

original story (British Airways)

Wednesday
May122010

Afriqiyah Airways 771 crashes on landing, killing about 100

At about 12:10 EDT (UTC-4) early this morning, a Tripoli-bound Afriqiyah Airways Airbus A330-200 went down at its airline's main hub, Tripoli International Airport (IATA: TIP; ICAO: HLLT), killing about 100.  The flight originated in Johannesburg, South Africa.  About 61 Dutch, about 22 Libyans, and lesser numbers of British and South Africans were aboard the plane.  A child between eight and ten years old thrown clear of the explosion and carrying a Dutch passport is thought to be the only survivor of the crash.  No fire resulted.

The A330-200 was going to change its flight number and continue on to Gatwick Airport in London (IATA: LGW; ICAO: EGKK).  The plane reportedly came to rest not far from the end of the runway on which it was expected to land.  On its website, Afriqiyah Airways offered assistance with hotel accommodations and visa approval to relatives of the victims.  This is the most deadly accident in the airline’s nine-year history.  Libya’s Transport Minister has said the incident was not terrorism.

Here are some articles about the crash.

Libya plane crash: Dutch boy only survivor, Britons among 104 dead (UK Daily Mail)

Tourism Board says 61 Dutch killed in Libyan crash (Newsvine)

Libyan plane crashes on landing; 96 killed (CBS News)

Plane crash at Libya Tripoli Airport: Passengers killed in landing accident (www.sky.com)