The airline is expecting to take delivery of their first double-decker airliner in July of this year and will first use the plane on short-haul routes for training and then on their London (LHR) to Los Angeles (LAX) route starting on October 15th. The second A380 will be placed on their LHR to Hong Kong in November (tickets for both flights are on sale now).
British Airways first Airbus A380 in Hamburg. Image from BA.
The airline has 12 A380s on order, which are expected to all be delivered by 2016.
British Airways first Airbus A380 in Hamburg. Image from BA.
“This will be a very special premiere,” Keith Williams, British Airways’ chief executive, said. “The A380 is a great aircraft that has been developed with huge amounts of British engineering ingenuity. London and Los Angeles are two world-leading cities, and we are proud to be the first airline to connect them with the A380.”
Although the outside of the British Airways A380 is beautiful, the inside is not too shabby either:
British Airways Airbus A380 World Traveller Cabin. Image by BA.
British Airways Airbus A380 First Class Cabin. Image from BA.
British Airways A380 Club World seat. Image from BA.
This story written by…David Parker Brown, Editor & Founder.David started AirlineReporter.com in the summer of 2008, but has had a passion for aviation since he was a kid. Born and raised in the Seattle area (where he is currently based) has surely had an influence and he couldn’t imagine living anywhere else in the world.
Earlier this week marked the 37th anniversary of the first Concorde flight and to help celebrate, Jaunted ran a story by Joe Corrigan who re-lived his JFK-LHR flight he took in July 2003. I wanted to share and here is the first two paragraphs of the story and the rest can be read on Jaunted.
I don’t know quite what it was about Concorde, but ever since I first saw her as a kid, I was mesmerised. That shape, those lines—there was something about her that drew me in. I was 14 the first time I saw her with my own eyes, as my my uncle had discovered Concorde would fly into Sydney, my home town, on a round-the-world charter. Together we headed to the airport to see her land.
That aircraft, F-BVFC, zoomed in and landed with full reverse and later took off with full afterburner as I watched from afar. I was hooked. The experience was not only visual and aural, but earth-shaking. Everything in the vicinity shuddered under the engine power; you could feel Concorde slice through the air and this in itself made it all the more visceral. It became a dream of mine to fly on her, one I never thought likely to come true.
British Airways Boeing 777. Photo by Jeremy Dwyer-Lindgren.
Recently, British Airways started keeping information on some of their VIP customers and searching for their images online all in the name of service. The program, called “Know Me,” has some privacy advocates worried.
“Last year we re-committed to the ethos: To Fly. To Serve. That’s what ‘Know Me’ is all about – enabling us to recognise our customers in a way that is individual to them,” Jo Boswell, head of customer analysis at British Airways, stated. “We’re essentially trying to recreate the feeling of recognition you get in a favourite restaurant when you’re welcomed there, but in our case it will be delivered by thousands of staff to millions of customers.”
The idea is simple enough. Airline employees have iPads which contain information on high-end passengers. What kind of food they prefer, if it is the first time they have flown with a certain product and if they might have had previous issues flying on the airline. The software also allows the crew to identify a passenger by searching Google Images.
Although many passengers probably appreciate this high-level of service, not everyone is so happy. According to CNN, Emma Carr, deputy director of privacy campaign group Big Brother Watch stated, “Since when has buying a flight ticket meant giving your airline permission to start hunting for information about you on the internet?” Fundamentally, British Airways has not asked their passengers’ permission to take part in this scheme. Surely, if they want to search Google to find pictures and any other information all they have to do is ask?”
Why wouldn’t an airline take advantage of this? I am pretty sure photos found on the internet are part of the public domain, that anyone could find.
The airline states that they will not be doing this level of service for a huge majority of the passengers, but just the rare few who probably are used to being known. According the British Airways, the service is being well received. “The early results have been extremely positive, our customers love being recognised and treated as an individual, and our customer service staff and cabin crew feel empowered to deliver a really bespoke service,” Boswell said. “This is just the start though – the system has a myriad of possibilities for the future.”
What do you think? Is this a genius customer service move, creepy or an invasion of privacy?
I know, I know — two video posts in a row. Not something I normally do, but British Airways is doing some pretty cool stuff right now, that I want to share. It involves a Boeing 777 in places you wouldn’t expect. The video above was posted a few days ago from what I suspect is a “fake” account operated by the airline.
It is not something you would expect and made me wonder what was up — which was probably the point of the video. As expected, British Airways had a game plan.
You might know about this little event where people get together every four years and compete against each other in a number of different sporting events — you might know it as “the Olympics.” You also might have heard that the 2012 Olympics will be held in London. You also might know that British Airways is based in London. The airline is looking to build motivation and support for the Olympic and Paralympic games with this unique ad campaign.
Frank van der Post, British Airways managing director of brands and customer experience, explained to AirlineReporter.com: “We’re rallying the country to get behind Team GB and ParalympicsGB to capitalise on home advantage. Whether it’s delaying your summer holiday, finding where to get behind the country with our ‘best sports bars abroad’ guide, or cheering them on at Park Live at the Olympic Park – we are encouraging every extra clap, cheer and whoop we can get.”
The ad below is the most recent one that comes directly from the airline and is pretty freak’n cool. Who doesn’t like seeing a Boeing 777 driving through London? Well, if it really happened, there might be a few people who wouldn’t be so thrilled, but in a video, it is quite epic.
British Airways also made a third video, highlighting why this idea of “home advantage” is so important to London and the thinking behind the ad concept (notice the British Airways Boeing 787 model in the background of some of the shots).