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BA Passengers Face Major Delays After Glitch

The carrier has apologized after a global technical failure left passengers unable to check in on both sides of the Atlantic.

British Airways (BA) passengers arriving at London’s Gatwick (LGW) and Heathrow (LHR) airports faced long delays when a computer glitch hit the carrier’s check-in system on Tuesday morning.

While it’s not known exactly how many flights were affected by the issue, passengers reported delays of several hours as staff attempted to process travelers manually, issuing them with handwritten boarding passes. Travelers also reported long lines within the airports’ baggage drop areas as well as delays on the tarmac itself.

The glitch initially caused problems for BA passengers leaving the United States on Monday evening. Passengers in Chicago, San Francisco and Washington D.C. reported delays due to the technical problem, which left the carrier’s staff unable to verify which travelers had already passed through airport security.

Speaking to the BBC, Matthew Walker, a London-based financial analyst, confirmed that he waited more than two hours to board his flight from Chicago to LHR.

“People were lining up, some had already checked in and got through security, but others, when this thing happened, whatever it is, were stuck in the check-in line. So they (the staff) have the problem that they didn’t know who had already gone through the gate because all the systems literally just had a meltdown,” he said.

On Tuesday morning, the carrier confirmed that the glitch was causing severe delays on the opposite side of the Atlantic and advised passengers to check in online, where possible. A spokesperson for BA told Sky that while it was processing passengers as normal, the check-in counters at LGW and LHR were running, “a bit slower than usual”.

The cause of the glitch has not yet been confirmed. However, it has been revealed that the airline was in the process of upgrading its systems when the technical issues began. BA has apologized to passengers affected by this technical problem and said that operations are now running normally.

[Photo: Boeing]

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