British Airways is to launch double daily business class-only flights from London City airport to New York next year.The new flights will operate on Airbus A318 aircraft with 32 seats onboard.
Willie Walsh, British Airways’ chief executive, said: “This niche service will fly passengers between the heart of the two largest financial centres in the world. London City airport is located minutes away from some of our key corporate customers and is in one of the fastest growing areas of the capital.
“We will offer a 15 minute check-in for customers in both London and New York. London City’s size means that it is a quick and easy airport to use and, with a maximum of 32 passengers onboard, getting on and off the aircraft will be a smooth process. Once onboard, customers will experience all the benefits of our business class cabin including a fully flat bed.
“The London - New York route is a key market for us and these flights will be in addition to our current Heathrow schedule from where we fly eight times a day to JFK and three times a day to Newark. As well as the business market, we are confident that there will also be a demand from premium leisure customers for this service.
“The A318 is the perfect aircraft for these flights. It is capable of operating at London City and is large enough for us to provide the number of business class seats required to make this a viable operation.”
The airline has ordered two A318 aircraft to operate these flights. They will be the first A318s in the British Airways fleet though the airline already operates 69 Airbus A320 family shorthaul aircraft.