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British Airways

BA to Bring Back Second Meal and More in $5.9B Overhaul

BA to Bring Back Second Meal and More in $5.9B Overhaul
Jackie Reddy

The carrier will be spending billions on improving its current fleet. It is hoped that these changes will raise the airline’s profile among a slew of budget competitors.

British Airways has revealed its ambitions to regain its reputation as one of the globe’s more prestigious carriers, London Loves Business reports.

Speaking at World Travel Market in London on Monday, Alex Cruz, BA’s chief executive and chairman, announced that it will be shelling out £4.5 ($5.9) billion on 72 new craft over the next five years. While it intends to purchase an undisclosed number of new Boeing 787-10s and Airbus A350s, the carrier has also said that it will be spending money on revamping its current fleet and is seeking to roll out what it already says is ‘the best Wi-Fi in the sky’ on its planes.

Cruz also said that he wants to fit out the carrier’s craft with some additional amenities, including at-seat power points.

But it seems that catering is also high on Cruz’s agenda for the airline; indeed, the carrier has reduced its meal offerings in recent years, but says that it now intends to reintroduce a second meal for long-haul economy passengers, who currently only receive a light snack.

“We will upgrade catering so that everyone has better snacks and, on longer flights, everyone has a full second meal,” he said, as quoted by the Independent.

Cruz hopes that these improvements will help Britain’s flag carrier to stand apart from low-cost rivals like Norwegian, Ryanair and EasyJet. “British Airways is facing a combination of competitive forces more challenging than at any point in our history. We face waves of new competition on all fronts. And we also face changing customer behavior as online price transparency has opened a world of almost unlimited choice,” he said.

“As a national flag carrier, we are not granted some special immunity from the way the industry has changed. Incumbency does not grant any privilege. We have no divine right to flourish, and we don’t ask for one…We must shape BA for the future, as a premium airline committed to customer choice and one that is a byword around the world for British know-how and excellence,” Cruz added.

For the FlyerTalk discussion on this topic, head here.

View Comments (8)

8 Comments

  1. gordies

    November 7, 2017 at 8:54 am

    So, how many customers were alienated before someone sat up and smelt the coffee? Is this too little too late to save BA’s reputation?

  2. highstream

    November 7, 2017 at 10:03 am

    Need a lot more than a second meal. Coach is treated like a cattle car, with the pressed FA’s showing it; airport customer service is horrible unless one hits the right person – like playing the lottery; and some of the website (e.g., making seat change) is, or at least was, not obvious vs. U.S. airline sites – and no one at BA could figure out how to explain it – until I hit that just right customer service desk person after the fourth leg of a five-leg trip at Heathrow. I remember how much of a relief it was on the last leg back to the States having an AA flight crew that set on a whole different tone from the moment of boarding – and which continued all the way through to JFK.

  3. LukeO9

    November 7, 2017 at 11:08 am

    “at-seat power points”
    How innovative.

  4. jonsail

    November 7, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    What about 30″ seat pitch on intra-European flights in business class? Even with the blocked middle seat the 30″ pitch is super-budget, not flag carrier!

  5. starspookster

    November 7, 2017 at 12:08 pm

    I’m sure my brother and SIL will be happy to hear a second meal is being proposed. Especially since due to goof up there was no meal service at all on their LGW-TPA 9 hour plus flight on 11/6. .

  6. Legend717

    November 7, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    Frankly, none of this matters, when you consider BA is still charging the archaic FUEL SURCHARGE fees.
    I’m expected to pay an extra $600 or even $700 on transatlantic business class tickets, just for the privilege of flying in an obsolete BA “premium” cabin?
    These improvements won’t earn my business.
    At this point, I have about as much respect for British Airways as I have for UNITED; both are safe operations, but you certainly don’t fly them because you want to.

  7. a330boston

    November 7, 2017 at 7:14 pm

    You guys have nothing better to do than rant when something positive happens? Obviously not everything is going to change from mediocre to world class overnight. Give it time for crying out loud. I also was not expecting this, but look…It happened. Wait till BA becomes one of the top 10 and you guys still point at every little nook and cranny to complain about.

    highstream, Legend717, I suggest you guys find a job or something better to do with your lives than scrolling through articles and posting dumb comments.

  8. Sydneyberlin

    November 7, 2017 at 9:14 pm

    Oh, first we go cheap cheaper cheapest and now suddenly back paddling? Plus, all this won’t change the awful reputation that this once grande airline has earned itself over recent years- very deservedly so if you ask me!

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