British Airways (BA) is to halt flights to Harare from the start of the winter season at the end of October, citing mounting losses on the route as the southern African nation struggles with its worst economic crisis since independence in 1980. Passengers for Zimbabwe however, can still stay with BA by using franchise partner Comair via Johannesburg.
Also losing its BA connection, but from next March when the summer programme starts, is Detroit (pictured above), a US destination for more than 50 years. As things stand the one time capital of the world”s car industry (Motown) will only be served from the UK by a daily Northwest service from Gatwick.
BA commercial director Robert Boyle, however, was in an upbeat mood: ”We”re taking advantage of the opportunities provided by Open Skies to further enhance our market leading network from London to the US. Next summer, we will offer our customers 41 daily flights to 18 destinations across the US.”
The airline”s daily flight to Dallas Fort Worth and double-daily flights to Houston will move from Gatwick to Heathrow from 30 March 2008. In addition, the airline will increase frequencies from Heathrow to New York JFK, Seattle and Washington and from Gatwick to Orlando.
Three of the ten Boeing 777 aircraft based at Gatwick will move to Heathrow to operate the Dallas and Houston services.
For the summer 2008 programme there is further tweaking of the flight programme. The current Algiers flights from Gatwick will move to Heathrow to ensure that the airline”s oil and gas destinations in North Africa and the US are still linked through the same airport; Warsaw will go the other way, relocating from Heathrow to Gatwick.
In addition, there will be a new short haul route from Gatwick to Genoa in Italy starting on 4 April, 2008, with daily flights.