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    The British Labour party created the British Airways Group in 1974. Four airlines, BOAC and BEA of London, Cambrian Airways of Cardiff and Northeast Airlines of Newcastle were dissolved to form the newly nationalized company. Privatized in 1987, it acquired additional airlines on its way to becoming the largest airline of the UK in terms of number of passengers carried.

Service Areas

    British Airways services six destinations within Great Britain and 143 international destinations in 69 countries on six continents.

Largest Hubs

    The largest hubs for British Air are London’s Heathrow and Gatwick airports.

Popular Routes

    The current most popular British Airways routes are to Paris, Madrid, Rome and Athens.

Frequent Flyer Program

    The Executive Club is the British Airways frequent flyer program. BA Miles are awarded on all British Airways flights and qualifying oneworld® and partner airlines. The number of miles awarded to Executive Club members depends on the distance flown and the cabin class, the kind of ticket purchased and Executive Club tier. Tier status is based on the number of miles accrued. Starting at Blue, members move to Silver then Gold as they fly more miles. Members can also earn BA Miles by staying in select hotels, renting cars and using a British Airways credit card.

Cabin Amenities and Classes

    British Airways High Life includes entertainment (movies, TV, games, radio and music), a magazine and shopping. Meals are offered at no-charge on all flights in all classes. First Class offers a private concierge, champagne, formal dining and incredibly soft cotton pajamas. Club World class was designed for sleeping, eating, working and relaxing. A privacy screen allows for an enclosed space in which to work or sleep. Fresh meals are served and access to the self-service kitchen is available. Club World London City begins in September 2009 on flights between London and New York. Club Europe offers incredible comfort and service throughout Europe. World Traveller Plus class provides privacy, extra space and a three-course meal. World Traveller class provides attentive service and an ergonomically designed seat. Children are very much welcome in World Traveller class. Euro Traveller and UK Domestic classes are priced for every budget.

Baggage Policy

    The British Airways standard hand baggage size is 22" x 18" x 10". Adults are allowed one standard-sized bag and one laptop, handbag or briefcase. Infants are allowed one standard-sized bag. Customers are entitled to a free checked baggage allowance as long as they do not exceed 50 lbs in weight and 35" x 30" x 17" in size. Checked bags, however, cannot exceed 70 lbs in weight or 94" x 30" x 26" in size. A fee of £25 is assessed on all bags over the weight or size allowance. The number of free bags allowed varies based on the destination of the flight and the ticket purchased.


    British Airways is headquartered in Waterside, Harmondsworth, which is in the London Borough of Hillingdon. London Heathrow Airport, the busiest in the European Union as far as passenger traffic is concerned, is also located in Hillingdon.

Airline Codes

    The IATA code (International Air Transport Association) for British Airways is BA. The ICAO codes (International Civil Aviation Organization) are BAW, SHT and XMS. The Callsign for British Airways, which is also the name of its logo, is Speedbird.
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