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British Airways has stopped selling tickets for short-haul flights from Heathrow

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British Airways has decided to suspend the sale of tickets on short haul flights from London Heathrow for travel today (Friday) and tomorrow (Saturday).

This may be extended beyond Saturday but a decision has yet to be taken.

This appears to have been done to both meet Heathrow’s capacity caps and to give BA flexibility to move passengers whose flights are cancelled at short notice.

BA has stopped selling tickets for short-haul flights from Heathrow for today and tomorrow

Here is the notice circulated to the travel trade a few minutes ago:

“To further support this goal and minimise additional close-in bookings which risk us exceeding the caps, as well as to enable us to reaccommodate any passengers whose flights are impacted at short notice, we’ve made the difficult decision to temporarily limit access to inventory on short-haul flights from London Heathrow, currently until the 30th July.

For technical reasons, we still need to permit access to BA office ID’s / IATA’s to allow us to reaccommodate passengers which consequently means that you may see some inventory available via that is not available via any GDS or via NDC.

Please be aware that the aim of this additional action is not to favour or drive last-minute sales via at a time when we’re operating within strict capacity caps and are encouraging customers to voluntarily move their travel plans to alternate dates. For technical reasons, we’re simply unable to open British Airways inventory designed for passenger reaccommodation without the side effect of also enabling some minimal selling.

We don’t intend to keep this additional short-term measure in place a moment longer than necessary and will be reviewing next week with a view to lifting it as soon as we possibly can. That said, we do want to be open and transparent in that limited inventory will continue to be a challenge in all channels for carriers operating from Heathrow until the capacity caps are removed. 

We apologise for the inconvenience this will cause and would like to thank you for your continued patience and understanding as we work through this challenging period together.

Whilst travel agents have been blocked entirely from selling tickets, some availability remains bookable because this is the only way that agents can rebook. However if we look at, say, Amsterdam for tomorrow, this is what you get:

The Business tickets being sold are fully flexible ones, at £681 each way …. if you’re willing to pay that then BA will ensure you get on, even if someone else does not.


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Comments (48)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Lee says:

    Am I correct in thinking you still cannot cancel an Avios booking online? If not, what is the best number to call? I’m a Silver and yes, I have checked online, but BA now hide their telephone numbers very well.

    • Rob says:

      You can cancel, as long as it meets the criteria for a voucher. Click ‘claim a voucher’ and then you get an email back saying ‘Avios tickets no longer get vouchers so we’re refunding it all’. I did this online last weekend.

      • Jess says:

        I am still waiting over 4 weeks later for my money to be refunded though the voucher and Avios were back instantly.

        • Alan says:

          I cancelled an AMEX 2-4-1 flight and had to call up, I tried to voucher option but got an email stating it didn’t meet the criteria (maybe because the flight was for after 30 September 2022?) I received the voucher and avios back straight away a matter of minutes. The cash re tax and charges surprised to get it back in about 3 days.

          I had a cash flight cancelled and took the refund option. The cash was returned after about 2 weeks.

      • Toby says:

        I have done this, but it seems to go into a queue to be processed. So every time I have had to call BA to ensure it is actually cancelled before the flight is flown (still showing as not cancelled 25 hours before). Haven’t wanted to risk BA claiming I didn’t cancel at least 24 hours before the flight just because their processing is slow.

  • Mike says:

    I have a feeling there are going to be a lot of short notice short haul cancellations over Fri and Sat for the next few weeks.

  • Mark says:

    Flying from Gatwick tomorrow on Wizzair at 5pm. Do I still need to go 3 hours ahead if I have a check in baggge?

    • Rob says:

      A Saturday in August, what could possibly go wrong?

      • Kevin C says:

        I was at Gatwick most of last Saturday. Our BA plane was delayed by a mere 5 hours. Big queues at check in counters. Security was fine. Of course tomorrow, the last Saturday in July, may be different.

      • Ivanka says:

        It was actually quite efficient last Saturday at Gatwick. Chatting to security they said pre 10am is worst, gets better later in the day. Food outlets were rammed but security took 5 minutes at 4am. Certainly not a bad experience. Seen it worse in Feb half term pre covid.

        • CamFlyer says:

          Five minutes for security at 4 AM is still too long….

          I’m scheduled to fly from Gatwick Monday @1545. I’m hoping 2 hours is sufficient.

    • Track says:

      I am liking Rob’s sense of humour! Written with the right apostrophe )

  • Susan says:

    What’s the easiest way to check for pulled flights (without an Expertflyer a/c)? I was looking at Limoges-Sou on 03/09 earlier this week with wide open availabilty but that seems to have disappeared completely from

    • pauldb says:

      If it’s still running it should be on the BA timetable. In this case it’s still on EF but zeroed out.

    • pauldb says:

      You can also search on with the “only show flights with seats” option unticked.

  • Len says:

    BA seem to e moving from one self inflicted mess to the next. Time to move on from a company that lives on their history but is a very ordinary airline being left behind. Many still showing blinded loyalty for an airline long past its best.

    • Catalan says:

      How is it ‘self inflicted’ if they’re required to meet Heathrow’s capacity caps and cancelling flights as a consequence?

      • Surreygp says:

        Not really, I have to go Vienna this coming week and BA doesn’t sell tickets, Austrian does. So in the last months I now had to change about 1/3 of my flights from BA to AF, Austrian etc, as BA doesn’t sell tickets, Cancels, etc. I managed to fly a lot (>3k tier points) even during COVID, but since April it has become a real struggle w BA.

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