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British Airways to “suspends Heathrow Lahore flights”

British Airways Boeing 787-800 registration G-ZBJG. Photo: British High Comission

British Airways is planing to suspend flights to Lahore from the end of February this year. The airline website is not showing any bookings and two reporters who cover the aviation sectors have tweeted about it. Tahir Imran tweeted that British Airways to stop Lahore flights. Just after 16 months. Since BA has a code share with Qatar Airways there will be no major impact on the tickets of those who have booked with BA.

In September 2020 British Airways announced it will be expanding its flights to connect Lahore and UK for the first time ever. BA started its four days a week BA 259, flight schedule on 14 October 2020.

On 18 December 2018 British Airways announced that it will fly from Heathrow to Islamabad from June 2, 2019. Lahore flights were a likely outcome of this as well as the events that resulted in termination of PIA’s TCO to Europe. The absence of PIA and special support from government Virgin Atlantic started flights to Pakistan in a very short span of time. Virgin obtained all the permissions in a record time with special intervention from Pakistani PM office. Virgin Atlantic operates flights from Lahore and Islamabad to Heathrow but it also operates a flight from Islamabad to Manchester.

According to Tahir Imran key factors that played a role in BA flight suspension to Lahore are a recent visit by British officials seems to be the cause. No secret that Lahore airport is a mess lately. PIA TCO decision coming. Uncertain future of its Key supporters at PM office”. On 30 November it was shared that a British Department for Transport (DfT) group has inspected the security arrangements for aircraft at Lahore‚Äôs Allama Iqbal International Airport. On top of that Pakistani aviation market is abuzz that Pakistani airlines will get clearance to fly to Europe very soon. And we have confirmation that PIA as well as Serene Air are ready to grab the opportunity as soon as they the TCO from EASA.

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