Does anyone know when, why and how BA has gotten away with withdrawing discounted one-way economy class seats between LHR and MAD?

7 replies

TheRealBabushka

Member since 21 Apr 2012

Total posts 2,059

Does anyone know when, why and how BA has gotten away with withdrawing discounted one-way economy class seats between LHR and MAD?

I recently did a search and found out only full-fare Y class seats available for economy class on that sector. If you chose to fly return then discount economy class seats (O/V/S booking class etc etc) are available.

The only option to fly cheaply one-way on BA from London to Spain appears to be via LCY or LGW.

I'm in no doubt that this is down to BA's partnership with IB (well union as opposed to partnership...IAG). But I am amazed this was done so obviously and blatantly.

Has anyone else noticed this? Is this something OFCOM would look into?

I haven't explored IB's pricing on that sector but I'm less keen to go with them as I'm an AAdvantage member and non-US flights with IB only attract 60% base mile accruals (as opposed to 100% when flying BA).

AlG

Member since 04 Nov 2010

Total posts 155

Ah, sorry but why would this matter to a website that's about "Australian Business Travel"? You might want to try the UK-based BusinessTraveller.com.

TheRealBabushka

Member since 21 Apr 2012

Total posts 2,059

Oooops sorry. I didn't realise the intent of this website/forum to be parochial in nature. As far as I could tell the content of this website has always included international non-Australian elements. 

But I am in fact based in Australia and curious to know anyone's thoughts on this matter. Presumably readers of this forum indulge in international travel and may have encountered a similar experience. Especially since QF is in the OW alliance with BA resulting in a possible increase in the use of BA to accrue QF points. Ergo, I higher propensity of encountering this incident.

PeterLoh

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 25 May 2012

Total posts 356

I think you'll find the same thing between AA hubs like DFW & MIA.

Anyway, unless you're connecting at LHR why would you want to fly from LHR over LCY? Heathrow is further out and delays are all too common especially in the mornings and early evenings.

StuParr

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 01 Mar 2012

Total posts 195

I think it is a good question. I fly individual sectors a lot in Europe and have seen this. Prior to the ability to book individual sectors at competitive prices, one way fares were Full Y fares. For some reason BA still do that for some bookings. i had the same problem in December between LHR and BCN. If you are looking for miles, then reserve with the BA brand and not IB as it is a BA operated flight normally, just be prepared to pay a premium for the pleasure I guess.

I agree with PeterLoh, unless you are connecting, fly out of City Airport. Much easier.

rcooper

Member since 10 Jun 2011

Total posts 26

It is a very valid question considering how much business travel there is from Australia to both Spain and the UK, with both destinations being done on the same itinerary.

London to Madrid and Barcelona vv is one of BA and IB's key corporate routes due to the high volume of high yield premium traffic, driven by the financial, pharma and manufacturing sectors.  There is at times a severe lack of capacity, combined with the two airlines working together meaning fares can be very high.  A full fare business class ticket comes in at about $2500 return

The discounted one way tickets on this route went a long time ago and it has never been deemed anti competitve

There are a few ways to work around this, either fly from LCY or LGW as suggested, although dependant on where in London you are coming from both those airports may not be convienient - LGW is 30 minutes from Victoria and London Bridge stations, LCY is great if you are in the City/Canary Wharf/East London area

The most common way to overcome this is to buy a cheaper return ticket and not use the return. Choose a return date avoiding peak travelling periods FRI/SUN/MON and go for midday flights.

Although you wont earn points dont forget Easyjet has multiple flights from Gatwick, Luton and Stansted airports to MAD who offer competitive one way pricing.  

If connecting over LHR then is there a reason that your fare from Australia cannot include the London to Madrid leg?

 

TheRealBabushka

Member since 21 Apr 2012

Total posts 2,059

Thank you guys. I appreciate the comments and validation. As it happens, I will be flying from LCY as I'll be staying near Rotherhithe. The only thing that bugs me is that there are no lounge facilities at LCY and although I've read comments about being able to check in at the very last minute, I'll be terribly stressed out for not giving myself ample time!

rcooper

Member since 10 Jun 2011

Total posts 26

that is what this site is all about getting first hand experience and feedback specific to the Australian market, which makes it a really valuable tool.  LCY is a great airport and very easy to get to from Rotherhithe.  No there are no lounge facilities - the airport does not need it.  

As per other comments this is an excellent airport to fly from - very cleverly designed, allowing you to turn up 20 minutes before departure time and still have a hassle free experience from airport arrival to getting on board.  No need to stress at all - and dont aim to be there hours before flight departure time you will be bored

The airport is designed to get bankers from the office and onto a plane in the shortest amount of time - and get a window seat - dependant on the way the plane takes off and lands - incredible views of Canary Wharf and if visibility good - central London

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