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-   -   Bad news - BA's NCL lounge reportedly to close permanently (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/british-airways-executive-club/2024726-bad-news-bas-ncl-lounge-reportedly-close-permanently.html)

KARFA Sep 15, 20 1:25 am


Originally Posted by chipster (Post 32676326)
Iíd be more concerned about the future of NCL flights than the lounge. There will be some sort of lounge provided for BA customers as long as there are flights

I donít think it is clear that a lounge will be provided even if there are flights.

passy777 Sep 15, 20 2:35 am


Originally Posted by secretplantofightinflation (Post 32675164)
Would any of our NCL-based travellers move away from
BA just because they no longer offer their own lounge?

Not specifically just because of the removal of lounge access, however, factoring in the other cost cutting measures BA are implementing, I suspect that for some, the removal of the lounge may be the straw that breaks the camel's back.

tigertanaka Sep 15, 20 8:41 am

I filled in the form yesterday and got a reply today:


Originally Posted by British Airways Executive Club
Dear TigerTanaka

Thank you for your email regarding the future of the lounge at Newcastle. At present, we have no information regarding the facilities here and whether they will reopen following the temporary closure due to the Covid restrictions, although I am aware of information that has been circulating on the internet.

However, I have passed your comments on to the relevant team, who will take this into consideration if they are indeed looking to close the lounge permanently.

Please feel free to let us know if we can help you with anything else.

Kind regards
xxxx
British Airways Executive Club


Tocsin Sep 15, 20 2:39 pm

Well, I've added my word for the lounge and staff.

It irks, seeing AF and KLM flying from NCL more frequently than BA at the moment...

layz Sep 16, 20 3:08 am


Originally Posted by Tocsin (Post 32677852)
Well, I've added my word for the lounge and staff.

It irks, seeing AF and KLM flying from NCL more frequently than BA at the moment...

I was going to say that now Teesside has better connections to London than NCL but it seems that their LCY flights were rather short lived. But it's not good that NCL doesn't even have flights 7 days a week to LHR while KLM are flying to AMS 3 times a day.

If you're choosing an airline to connect to another flight then KLM looks more attractive than BA right now as they have the better frequency. Pre-covid BA had a better frequency and had the advantage of their own lounge, now they have neither.

For point to point their competition is LNER (or driving), will people who normally fly switch to the train? It's frequent, convenient, only issue is they've not restarted the full catering offering. The first class catering is currently on a par with what BA are giving to economy passengers.

KARFA Sep 16, 20 3:20 am


Originally Posted by layz (Post 32678918)
I was going to say that now Teesside has better connections to London than NCL but it seems that their LCY flights were rather short lived.

They were short lived, but now replaced with a MME-LHR route from this week.

gms Sep 16, 20 3:55 am


Originally Posted by KARFA (Post 32678935)
They were short lived, but now replaced with a MME-LHR route from this week.

Which is perfect for me :). MME gets me closer to where I need to be, so if there won't be a lounge at NCL moving forward, then BA's probably lost most of my business on that route.

PGberkshire Sep 16, 20 3:57 am


Originally Posted by layz (Post 32678918)
I was going to say that now Teesside has better connections to London than NCL but it seems that their LCY flights were rather short lived. But it's not good that NCL doesn't even have flights 7 days a week to LHR while KLM are flying to AMS 3 times a day.

If you're choosing an airline to connect to another flight then KLM looks more attractive than BA right now as they have the better frequency. Pre-covid BA had a better frequency and had the advantage of their own lounge, now they have neither.

For point to point their competition is LNER (or driving), will people who normally fly switch to the train? It's frequent, convenient, only issue is they've not restarted the full catering offering. The first class catering is currently on a par with what BA are giving to economy passengers.


I personally much prefer flying from MAN to London than the train. For domestic and transit purpose.

As long as the lounge has good Wifi my productivity is only impacted on the short flight (35min) whereas on the train its 2hrs + with Wifi so bad its not even worth it. The only pain is Heathrow not being on Crossrail - but it will get better.

BA is in a great position to double down and challenge AF/KLM and the trains from regional airports.

Higher frequency, better service, own lounge. it has plenty of small planes (A319/320) going spare - or even A220 in the future. It's a bit of a joke that KLM has better regional presence that BA.

Yet it's happy taking the lower (but easier) natural margin from this and other routes.

Maybe BA doesn't calculate the forward benefit of that route.

For instance is someone routes via LHR to say SFO from NCL/MAN etc, does the domestic route get credited or acknowledged for the follow on traffic.
Also - what happens if they buy separate tickets, does it still track?

lhrpete Sep 16, 20 10:43 am

Until a couple of years ago I used to visit the north east at least six times each year and often more.

For years I flew LHR-MME with BD and that really was personal service. The crews and lounge staff knew me by name and very often on arrival at the MME lounge my drink was already poured, presumably check in staff called the lounge and I know it happened for others too.

When BD ditched MME I switched to BA and less convenient NCL which I found lacklustre both on board and in the NCL lounge in comparison and so over the last couple of years I switched to the train which I found far more pleasant than T5, a BA flight even in business class and anything to do with NCL which was probably at the bottom of my airport satisfaction league.

I wouldn't be surprised if BA drop NCL completely and I think it's time people stopped anything but the longest domestic flights in any event since train services are pretty good.

ThatT1Feeling Sep 16, 20 11:02 am


Originally Posted by lhrpete (Post 32679826)
<snip>

I wouldn't be surprised if BA drop NCL completely and I think it's time people stopped anything but the longest domestic flights in any event since train services are pretty good.

Depends where you're starting from. I live close to LHR for good reason. Getting to Euston to get to Manchester can mean that I can't get there by train until gone 10am whereas I used to be able to land in MAN just after 8am which means a proper working day there.

TyneTraveller Sep 16, 20 11:28 am


Originally Posted by lhrpete (Post 32679826)
Until a couple of years ago I used to visit the north east at least six times each year and often more.

For years I flew LHR-MME with BD and that really was personal service. The crews and lounge staff knew me by name and very often on arrival at the MME lounge my drink was already poured, presumably check in staff called the lounge and I know it happened for others too.


I wouldn't be surprised if BA drop NCL completely and I think it's time people stopped anything but the longest domestic flights in any event since train services are pretty good.

I agree that the East Coast Mainline services are generally far faster and superior to those on the Western side, which perhaps is not ideal for BA's NCL schedule however, stopping taking all but the longest domestic flights basically isolates the vast majority of Northern English, Border Regions, and Southern Scottish travellers who wish to connect onto anywhere else in the world. It is often simply not practical, or cost effective to add an additional 7 hours onto an transatlantic journey from Edinburgh by way of example, and have to handball baggage across London to boot.

Also, I must say that sounds fantastic service from the MME staff but lounge footfall must surely have been minimal in those days comparably to that of NCL. Whilst I can imagine that that level of personal service does exist, it may perhaps not always be practical to do so in a busier environment for a total of six visits per year. The vast majority of custom would be given that treatment if it was being delivered on that basis. That's certainly not meaning to sound as if sub standard service is acceptable mind :)

KARFA Sep 16, 20 11:48 am

For anyone travelling in the NCL area who would be connecting onwards from LHR they will simply go with another carrier such as KL, EK. They wonít be getting trains to London then traipsing across to LHR to get an onward flight. Perhaps HS2 will change that but it is 10 years away at least, and the time savings from Newcastle are not very significant anyway since north of Leeds the trains will run at normal speeds on the existing east coast line and south of Leeds they would be faster but take a much longer route to London than the existing line.

Even for point to point flying Newcastle to London can still make sense. From EDI, GLA, INV, ABZ, flying clearly beats the train.

Geordie405 Sep 16, 20 1:29 pm

I agree with KARFA on this. I've only done the train to KGX and then on to LHR via tube to Paddington / Heathrow Express on one occasion and it's not exactly convenient, or relaxing. You need to factor in a lot of spare time to account for delays etc.

Tocsin Sep 16, 20 2:34 pm


Originally Posted by KARFA (Post 32679986)
For anyone travelling in the NCL area who would be connecting onwards from LHR they will simply go with another carrier such as KL, EK. They wonít be getting trains to London then traipsing across to LHR to get an onward flight. Perhaps HS2 will change that but it is 10 years away at least, and the time savings from Newcastle are not very significant anyway since north of Leeds the trains will run at normal speeds on the existing east coast line and south of Leeds they would be faster but take a much longer route to London than the existing line.

Even for point to point flying Newcastle to London can still make sense. From EDI, GLA, INV, ABZ, flying clearly beats the train.

Very much agreed - my earlier comment about AF & KLM had with it the unspoken "if BA make it inconvenient for me to travel to LHR, there's always the option of CDG or AMS". Most of my travel (was!) using LHR to connect onward...

layz Sep 16, 20 3:41 pm


Originally Posted by Tocsin (Post 32680433)
Very much agreed - my earlier comment about AF & KLM had with it the unspoken "if BA make it inconvenient for me to travel to LHR, there's always the option of CDG or AMS". Most of my travel (was!) using LHR to connect onward...

AMS is definitely a viable option, no way I'd use CDG except as a last resort (unless connecting to La Premiere)


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