Friday, May 24, 2024

Demand for flights as quarantine rules ease: BA

Within hours of announcing the elimination of quarantine rules, British Airways (BA) witnessed a surge in demand from holidaymakers on the company website. Starting July 19, in time for the start of the school summer holidays, fully vaccinated people in England can skip quarantine when they fly back into the country. Since the announcement, the airline witnessed a 96 per cent increase in the number of views on its website as compared to the same day last week.

The top destinations being searched included Barbados, Palma, Ibiza, New York, Antigua, Malta and Malaga. As it stands, British Airways flies to more amber and green list countries than any other UK airline, 43 in total.

British Airways has agreed further reassurance measures which mean customers travelling until September 30, 2021 to a country which is added to the red list from amber while they are at their destination will be able to change their flight without any change to the cost of their flight, subject to availability. The move is expected to support Britons when they travel to a country that might be on a Government watch list to help them get home.

The airline has already publicly confirmed that its rules around the wearing of masks will remain in place to protect travelers, provide reassurance and boost customer confidence. Despite the relaxation of the mask rules, the Government has also recommended the wearing of masks in busy public areas and British Airways asks its customers to remain mindful of the rules around mask wearing in airports at a customer’s destination.

Sean Doyle, British Airways’ Chairman and CEO said: “This is an important step for Britain as we start to make travel possible again after 18 difficult months. There is still more to do, including opening the US, but we are enthusiastic about welcoming more of our customers back over the summer period and reassuring them that British Airways is ready.”

The airline recently announced a proving trial in partnership with Heathrow and Virgin Atlantic to demonstrate that all WHO approved fully vaccinated travelers can safely enter the UK seamlessly using digital technology to prove vaccination status. VeriFLY, which already provides British Airways customers with access to an app to host verification documents, will be a key partner.

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