British Airways suspends ticket sales for short-haul flights from Heathrow

Customers will be unable to book flights for domestic or European services from the west London airport until August 8.

02 August 2022

British Airways has suspended selling short-haul flights from Heathrow Airport for several days.

Customers will be unable to book onto domestic or European services flying from the west London airport until Monday August 8.

Fares are still available to book on short-haul BA flights flying into Heathrow.

The airline said the move came in response to Heathrow’s request to limit new bookings.

In a statement on Monday, BA said: “As a result of Heathrow’s request to limit new bookings, we’ve decided to take responsible action and limit the available fares on some Heathrow services to help maximise rebooking options for existing customers, given the restrictions imposed on us and the ongoing challenges facing the entire aviation industry.”

Heathrow announced last month that no more than 100,000 daily departing passengers are permitted until September 11.

BA earlier responded to Heathrow’s cap on passenger numbers by announcing it would cancel 10,300 flights until October, with one million passengers affected.

Many passengers flying to and from the UK’s busiest airport have suffered severe disruption in recent months, with long security queues and baggage system breakdowns.

Tens of thousands of flights have been cancelled to cope with the demand for air travel amid staffing shortages.

Passengers queue to check-in at terminal 2 at Heathrow Airport
Airlines have been accused of ‘harmful practices’ in their treatment of passengers affected by disruption (Steve Parsons/PA)

It comes after Emirates last month rejected Heathrow’s order to cancel flights to comply with the cap.

The airline accused the airport of showing “blatant disregard for consumers” by attempting to force it to “deny seats to tens of thousands of travellers” through the cap.

A Heathrow spokeswoman said at the time it would be “disappointing” if “any airline would want to put profit ahead of a safe and reliable passenger journey”.

Virgin Atlantic also criticised the airport’s actions and claimed it was responsible for failures which are contributing to the chaos.

Airlines on July 21 were accused of “harmful practices” in their treatment of passengers affected by disruption.

The Competition and Markets Authority and the Civil Aviation Authority issued a joint letter to carriers, expressing concern that “consumers could experience significant harm unless airlines meet their obligations”.

The letter stated: “We are concerned that some airlines may not be doing everything they could to avoid engaging in one or more harmful practices.”

These include selling more tickets for flights “than they can reasonably expect to supply”, not always “fully satisfying obligations” to offer flights on alternative airlines to passengers affected by cancellations, and failing to give consumers “sufficiently clear and upfront information about their rights”.

More from Perspective

Get a free copy of our print edition


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.
You need to agree with the terms to proceed

Your email address will not be published. The views expressed in the comments below are not those of Perspective. We encourage healthy debate, but racist, misogynistic, homophobic and other types of hateful comments will not be published.