British Airways goes budget(ish)

..and charges for checked in baggage.

Passengers of British Airways on some short-haul routes from London City and Heathrow will be charged a £10 fee for checking in a bag. How it will work is that from 24th September, passengers travelling without checked baggage to Amsterdam, Barcelona, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Paris, Rome, Rotterdam and Stockholm will get a £10 discount on the cheapest tickets. The airline has launched “hand-baggage only” fares that reward travelling light to eight domestic and European destinations and passengers who chose to check in a bag must pay £10 more. So is it a discount or a charge? It operates as an extra fee so we think it is a charge.

lost luggage mountain

Has anyone seen my bag?

This policy already applies to BA’s short-haul flights from Gatwick, but today’s move is significant in that there is no significant no-frills rival at either Heathrow or London City whereas Easyjet is a major rival at Gatwick.

But watch this space as if the scheme proves successful BA may introduce it across the whole short haul network in the months ahead.

However, an unwelcome feature of the scheme and some would say taking going too far into the budget airline model, passengers who book BA’s hand-baggage-only fare but turn up at the airport with a bag to check in will pay a £40 fee, a move likely to be very unpopular with passengers stung by the fee at check in.  Will such a move be compatible with BA’s brand? Time will tell.




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