Bits: BA cancelling strike flights from 1 July, Gatwick Express cancelling trains from Thursday

News in brief:

British Airways cancelling flights pre-strike

British Airways seems more worried about the upcoming 16-day strike by Mixed Fleet crew members than it was for previous strikes.  Perhaps it is the higher summer passenger loads, which make it harder to consolidate two flights into one.

As I wrote recently, BA is planning to lease nine fully-crewed Qatar Airways short-haul aircraft for two months.  This would cover the strike and give BA some extra flexibility over the summer.

No long-haul flights have been cancelled in previous strikes.  This is NOT the case this time.

The following services have already been cancelled:

1 July – BA079 (Muscat)
2 July – BA080 (Muscat) & BA083 (Abuja)
3 July – BA082 (Abuja) & BA125 (Bahrain)
4 July – BA124 (Bahrain) & BA109 (Dubai) & BA173 (NYC) & BA112 (NYC)
5 July – BA108 (Dubai) & BA133 (Jeddah) & BA075 (Lagos) & BA074 (Lagos)
6 July – BA132 (Jeddah) & BA67 (Phil’) & BA66 (Phil’) & BA083 (Abuja)
7 July – BA083 (Abuja)

More will presumably follow for the latter half of the strike.

British Airways is generally slow at telling people their flights have been cancelled.  The best thing to do is download the free MyFlights app to your phone (iOS only) (I reviewed MyFlights here).  MyFlights checks the Amadeus booking system on a regular basis and notifies you if there are any changes to your flights, well before BA will tell you.  This allows you to beat the rush to rebook.

As for other flights, BA is saying “we are still reviewing our shorthaul services.”

Remember that only Heathrow services will be impacted.  You have no chance of disruption if you are flying from another airport.

Gatwick Express new trains

Gatwick Express cancellations resume tomorrow

Drivers on Southern Railway and Gatwick Express are resuming their overtime ban tomorrow, Thursday.

This is an open-ended overtime ban which will lead to considerable disruption for the forseable future.

The RMT union has also called a one day strike for 10th July.

Details of the revised and much reduced Southern and Gatwick Express timetable from tomorrow are here.

If you are travelling to Gatwick, take a Thameslink service from Blackfriars or another Thameslink station which will be unaffected.

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My review of the Park Inn hotel, Southend on Sea
UK court ruling may lead to 6 years of refunds for cancelled returns on missed flights
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Comments

  1. OT – Virgin MBNA sign up at Virgin Clubhouse, does anyone know whether you have to apply whilst in the lounge or can you take the sign up forms home and send in the post? Mrs Tom is using the lounge later this week and would like to take advantage myself.

    • Jonathan says:

      They give you a laptop in the lounge to do it there and then.

      • Genghis says:

        Didn’t @Alan apply for the Black in the lounge and then the White at a later date?

        • Indeed he did 😛 PINs just arrived for White, card should be here any day. Already hit the spend target on Black (= 1 transaction!). Going to move a recent £1 Curve on IHG transaction over to White Virgin when it arrives.

          • the_real_a says:

            Have they launched that feature yet? Its not on my app right now.

          • Not launched yet but in testing and works flawlessly to date, so I’d expect it to come out soon.

    • I used the lady’s ipad to apply and it took me 5 mins to complete all the info, which included an immediate response on my acceptance. I didn’t see any paper forms but might be worth asking if you can still get the higher signup bonus by applying at your leisure.

    • They’ve got a tablet to complete there and then. They’ve got glossy brochures for both, you might be able to persuade them to let you take it away for white, not sure about for black though.

    • When does the Virgin clubhouse offer expire?
      And do you have to do it from the lounge? If so, I’m assuming you have to pay to get in?
      Have 2 loungeclub passes with Amex gold, hoping to use in August, so unsure what to do?
      Thanks

      • You can’t pay, Upper Class / Gold only.

      • We don’t know when it expires, but it is now even more generous than the standard offers given they dropped today. Looking at the expensive print of the brochures I can’t see them changing the amounts in the Clubhouse offer anytime soon. You need to be flying Upper Class/Delta One/VS Gold/Delta ?Plat to get in though.

  2. the real harry1 says:

    do I get the right to re-routing if my flight is cancelled due to a strike?

    • the real harry1 says:

      My plane has been cancelled due to industrial action

      If your flight is cancelled due to an exceptional circumstance, you are automatically entitled to the care and assistance set out above (meals, accommodation, transport etc). In addition to this you are entitled to re-routing at the earliest opportunity, or for a refund and a return to your original departure point (ie If you are flying from London Heathrow to Sydney via Charles de Gaulle and industrial action leaves you stranded in Paris, you can request to be flown back to London).
      http://www.bottonline.co.uk/flight-delay-compensation/claim-guides/strike-action-effects-on-flight-compensation

    • the real harry1 says:

      My plane has been cancelled due to industrial action

      If your flight is cancelled due to an exceptional circumstance, you are automatically entitled to the care and assistance set out above (meals, accommodation, transport etc). In addition to this you are entitled to re-routing at the earliest opportunity, or for a refund and a return to your original departure point (ie If you are flying from London Heathrow to Sydney via Charles de Gaulle and industrial action leaves you stranded in Paris, you can request to be flown back to London).

  3. Wally1976 says:

    Completely OT – thought this might appeal to some on here…win a stay in the original flight control tower at Stockholm Arlanda Airport!

    https://www.homeaway.co.uk/lp/arlanda/?utm_campaign=HAUK_TRV_34442_ACQ_REC_NTB_1706&utm_medium=email&utm_source=Adhoc&

  4. Brian W says:

    O/T Bits – MyFlights app had notified me today of an aircraft change on my flight on Friday TXL – AUH from an A330 to a B772. As Air Berlin don’t have any triple 7’s does anyone know if they have started using Etihad aircraft?

    Just trying to figure out whose metal I’ll be on now. Amy thoughts appreciated.

  5. Nick M says:

    Sorry, completely OT – I am looking to book a seat (not lap) for a 4 month old, and the BA twitter team told me that this needs to be done over the phone (I’m fairly sure I have done this online before though) – am I correct in thinking that they will therefore waive any additional fees? Do you think I’d have much luck asking to also make/add an Avios booking to the same reservation?

  6. the real harry1 says:

    O/T Tesco is to axe 1,200 jobs at its head office as part of a major cost-cutting drive.
    The supermarket giant informed affected staff on Wednesday morning about the cull, which amounts to 25pc of employees at offices in Welwyn Garden City and Hatfield.
    Tesco is in the midst of a turnaround plan under chief executive Dave Lewis and last week said 1,100 jobs would be axed after confirming plans to shut its call centre in Cardiff.
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2017/06/28/tesco-axe-quarter-jobs-head-office/

    These are pretty big cost-cutting changes.

    I wonder what the Clubcard strategy will be going forward? Often money saved in one part of a business is [partly] used to re-invest in promotional activity.

    • I can see Tesco scrapping avios points to concentrate more on price.

      • the real harry1 says:

        I can see Tesco zoning in on stuff it did extremely well in the past – Dunhumby & understanding consumers – Tesco Boost – truly exciting & innovative Clubcard Rewards/ loyalty prog

        & using that to gain competitive advantage

  7. OT: what’s the cap on amex points for referrals. I had the gold originally. Referred 4 ppl giving 36k. I upgraded to plat and it says limit is 90k. But does that only apply if I’m referring plat to plat? I’m hoping to refer 3-4 gold cards soon and want to make sure they’ll all go through. Thanks

  8. Are the any android equivalent apps that check the flight status on Amadeus?

    • Londonbus says:

      Checkmytrip?

    • Not yet, although now MyFlights has a paid-for option they might develop one. In the meantime you can still use the web version and register your flights there.

    • the_real_a says:

      Tripit does the same. There is a free version, it will send SMS of changes. Web and Android apps available.

    • I have MyFlights on Android. It has just notified me that one of my BA flights on Saturday has changed, but only 30 minutes later than normal.

  9. OT – But Gatwick related !!

    Which is the best Gatwick North Priority Pass lounge ?? Is No 1 Lounge still vastly overcrowded due to BA’s closure of its lounges ???
    Not sure I want to fight through all the grumpy BA passengers angry at the lack of champagne (As I would be too – I’m O/W Emerald). In fact I hear that Priority Pass members will be turned away to keep space for BA passengers available.
    So is this still happening at No 1?
    And what’s the best lounge at the moment.
    Have 5 people in total, 4 able to get access via PP from Amex Plat and one we’ll need to pay for.
    Cheers.