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Fly British Airways Club World on short haul – or fly Titan

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As spotted by Simple Flying, British Airways is bringing its long haul Boeing 777 and 787 aircraft to selected European flights this Spring.

This is not the first time this has happened – during covid, BA operated a number of widebody flights to European destinations for cargo reasons, including to Athens.

British Airways has historically operated a widebody flight (usually a 777) to Madrid for cargo reasons, although this appears to no longer be the case. Iberia continues to operate its once-daily A350 service to London which makes it the best way to travel between the two cities.

British Airways 787

This time around the destinations and service are a bit more select, with the majority of widebody flights going to Frankfurt. However, a couple of services are also running to more tourist-focused cities – Berlin and Dublin. Simple Flying dug up the following dates:


  • February 18, 25
  • March 4, 6, 7, 11, 16, 23, 24
  • April 3, 4, 5, 7, 10, 11, 12 (x2), 14, 17, 18, 19, 21, 24, 25, 26, 28


  • March 4, 25


  • March 5, 7

If you are booked on one of the widebody services you’ll either get BA’s new Club Suite on the 777s, or the older yin-yang seat on the 787s.

Whilst Club Suite is the better product, the old seat is still a massive upgrade on the Club Europe seat you’d otherwise get on an A320.

Titan Airways British Airways charter

…. or you might end up on Titan Airways

It’s not all good news for short haul flyers.

British Airways appears to be facing a shortage of aircraft and/or pilots and/or cabin crew for its short haul operation, which is why the 777 is being used on certain routes.

This doesn’t seem to be enough extra capacity. In addition, British Airways has leased various aircraft from Titan Airways, complete with crew.

Titan aircraft will be operating selected services to Athens, Barcelona, Geneva, Lisbon, Manchester, Marrakech, Nice, Rome, Vienna, Warsaw and Zurich from Heathrow. The swaps will run from 16th February to 12th March.

If you wish, you will be allowed to change your flight by +/- 2 days to another British Airways flight which is operated by BA itself. No refunds are allowed.

That said, Titan Airways and its crew have a decent reputation so I wouldn’t rush to swap. Here is Rob’s review of a Titan Airways flight.


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (May 2023)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 30th May, the sign-up bonus on the Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard is doubled to a crazy 50,000 Avios! Apply here.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 30th May, the sign-up bonus on the free Barclaycard Avios Mastercard is doubled to 10,000 Avios. Apply here.

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

CRAZY 50,000 Avios for signing up (to 30th May) and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

10,000 Avios for signing up (only to 30th May) and an upgrade voucher at £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 13th June, the sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card is doubled to 60,000 Membership Rewards points – and you get £200 to spend at Amex Travel too! Apply here.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points AND a £200 Amex Travel voucher until 13th June! Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (77)

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

  • BA Flyer IHG Stayer says:

    It’s not closed at all. Plaza are operating it as a stand alone lounge,

    Given EWR has no VS flights the changes mentioned in the article don’t apply.

  • George K says:

    Is Titan using any of its 757s this time around by any chance?

    • Nick says:

      Given they removed them from their fleet some time ago, I doubt it……

  • Andrew says:

    Has anyone found Business reward availability on the BA flights? It looks like there’s none for just those flights with the long haul planes

  • Panda Mick says:

    KLM / AF already use Aspire at LHR for VS gold, so not sure there would be any impact to Virgin’s clubhouse.

    Speaking of which, there’s was no queue to get n this morning. And there was a sign on the reception welcoming PP card holders. It’s busy, but plenty of spare seats. Sausages were good but brown sauce 🙁 I think it’s my first time in an Aspire in a while.

  • Catalan says:

    Whilst our moaning is justified I think you’ll find most of the major European carriers operate shorthaul aircraft with Euro-business on those IST/AMM/CAI etc type routes.

  • Nick says:

    @Rhys the 777s aren’t for crewing, it’s cargo. Some of the flights are for specific shipments, others are because there are a few issues with the DHL aircraft that normally operate regular European cargo flights for IAG Cargo (so BA has temporarily taken over the FRA-LHR route for example).

  • Tiger of ham says:

    Does the Y seat recline with Titian on any of their aircraft ? If so it def an upgrade especially to athens. I have done that Y on BA. And they kindly loaded 9 sandwiches…. The mind boggles. It’s certainly should be a full service flight.

  • Rizz says:

    Two things:

    Not only VS passengers have access to these lounges – eg SQ Suites pax to VS’s JFK lounge.

    Also, OMAAT reported that Plaza Premium backtracked on these changes. Not that it matters much as eg the JFK lounge is always a flat “no” due to “capacity constraints” but here’s what the blog said:

    ” Well this is a strange but positive update. A couple of days ago I reported how most Virgin Atlantic Clubhouses would no longer allow access through Plaza Premium, as they were removed from Plaza Premium’s website. I’m now being told that’s not the case, and that these continue to be accessible. The website has been updated to reflect that.”

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

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