United777
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Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 5:12 pm

Hello all -

Do you think BA will retire the B744 soon from it's entire fleet and maybe replace them with the new 773ER or 772LR for the longer routes such as Asia and Australia. What plans does BA have for there B744's?

Farhan Ali
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 5:17 pm

I see no reason why they would phase out any 747-400:s anytime soon except in a further downturn in intercontinental traffic. A replacement would, I think, be financially unwise in their present position. But eventually of course they will be phased out. But I don´t think that will happen inside five years.

What do you think ?
747-400/747-200/L1011/DC-10/DC-9/DC-8/MD-80/MD90/A340/A330/A300/A310/A321/A320/A319/767/757/737/727/HS-121/CV990/CV440/S
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 5:37 pm

BA is the world's largest B 747-400 operator. From what I heard they have the highest number of international routes. So I would say it is unwise to retire them now. They need them.

Besides they are still very new.

They should just wait for a true-replacement to come. Could be the B 747 Advanced or the A 380. Or even a stretched 747 if Boeing builds one.

 
MD-11 forever
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 5:41 pm

As I mentioned already in a different thread, BA will soon retire 15 B744 and replace them with 773ER's. The 15 744's will head to Cathay Pacific....... Not offially confirmed, but I consider the source of this information as reliable (GE).

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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 5:51 pm

OK, if they placed them already it may be financially sound... It´s probably good to strive towards a common type on intercontinental routes...
747-400/747-200/L1011/DC-10/DC-9/DC-8/MD-80/MD90/A340/A330/A300/A310/A321/A320/A319/767/757/737/727/HS-121/CV990/CV440/S
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 6:14 pm

Nothing is confirmed yet but this rumour is pretty wide spread.

Why do they have to retire those 15 744s? They aren't that old are they?
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 6:21 pm

BA has too many 744s I think.
 
na
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 6:34 pm

As all 777s are smaller than 744s there is no way that BA will retire ALL Jumbos with its smaller sister. They would be dump stupid.
In the longterm they will have to plan for replacements of cause as the first batch of 744s is passing mid-life. A mix of 773ERs (some of them might even replace older 772s), 747 "NG"s and A380s is the most likely scenario in 10 years time, when this transformation away from the then old 744s will be nearly over.
But I expect BA still operating 744s after 2010. They have many that will still be under 15 years old by then.

To your original question "Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?": of cause they will. And the 767, 757, 777, A320, ... too.
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 7:30 pm

BA will probably have a mixture of B 747 NG as well as B 777-200ER and 300ER in the long run.
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 8:06 pm

A brief trip to Heathrow will explain why BA will not retire the 747-400 en masse. They are everywhere. Retiring this plane simply isn't feasible for BA right now. It will likely give them another good 10 years or so, then start looking for a good replacement.
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killerbabe
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 8:24 pm

This is not the case with BA, but to all the carriers who launched the 747-400 at the end of the 80's. The 777-300ER is a very good replacement and a much more modern design.already mentioned is SQ who is planning to replace the 744 with the 773. BA Could be next and who knows who is next. LH, KL, NW.......
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 8:26 pm

It may make economic sense, but where's the fun in flying a 777-300 ? Just a great long tube, not sexy at all. I hope BA keep the 744 until they realise the error of their ways and order the A380 to compete with SQ and EK on Far East/Oz routes.
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N6376M
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 8:26 pm

"Ever" is a very long time. Of course they will - eventually.

When you ask? When it becomes financially beneficial for them to do so.
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 8:58 pm

BA should wait until things become solid before they make a final decision.

Those 744s are still new...... They need not be replaced anytime soon. Maybe the oldest ones yes.
 
COAB767
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 9:23 pm

Is British Airways seriously considering purchasing the A380? If so than that's a joke cause that's the ugliest plane i've ever seen in my life, If that plane actually flies you know how many airports will have to make modifications just to accomodate the size of that plane.
Continental Micronesia: "Fly With The Warmth Of Paradise"
 
JGPH1A
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 9:26 pm

Apparently very few airports in markets that the A380 will serve will have to make any modifications at all - most new terminals have been built with the A380 specifically in mind, and it was designed specifically to fit into the same size ground footprint as the 747, to allow it to used the same hard stands. I think that some airports will have to widen the corners of some taxiways, but its not big changes overall.
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Shamrock_747
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 9:32 pm

Slots at LHR are very hard to get so BA need high capcity aircaft. They are very likely to order the A380 at some point in the future. Even if there is a downturn in traffic some routes still require 744s for example the daily LHR-LOS-LHR flight which is one of the most profitable routes for BA, and the 7 daily 744s to JFK.

Declan.
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 10:08 pm

BA said they have no interest in the A 380 but who knows???

The B 747-400 will always plan an important role in BA's fleet. There is always a place for these aircraft at BA's home.  Smile
 
donder10
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 11:00 pm

I wouldn't be surprised to see JFK be one of the first routes to see the 773ER.Too much economy capacity on the route.But it depends on the configuration of the 773ERs.
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Fri Nov 21, 2003 11:13 pm

Does BA manage to fill up their 744s to JFK?????
 
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Richard28
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:34 am

The LHR situation will force the A380 at some point.

As for the comments by COAB767, well enough said.

A380 amendments are being / have been made at many airports already.

Seems like the 773 could fit in for some of the BA 744's tho' if the Cathay thing works out, the balance being phased out with the A380 IMHO.

that will be many years away though..............
 
Delboy
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:41 am

Shamrock

Do BA really operate 7 x daily to JFK with 744's?

Do you not just mean daily as in one a day?
 
JGPH1A
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:42 am

Not QUITE 7 daily, but close enough on weekdays...

1 BA 117 D LHR 4 JFK 7 0825 1110 0 26OCT03 23DEC03 744
2 BA 175 D LHR 4 JFK 7 1055 1340 0 21NOV03 31DEC03 744
3 BA 177 D LHR 4 JFK 7 1330 1615 0 21NOV03 24DEC03 744
4 BA 115 D LHR 4 JFK 7 1600 1855 0 18NOV03 19DEC03 744
5 BA 113 D LHR 4 JFK 7 1730 2015 0 26OCT03 31DEC03 744
6 BA 179 45 LHR 4 JFK 7 1830 2115 0 04DEC03 05DEC03 744
7 BA 179 6 LHR 4 JFK 7 1830 2115 0 29NOV03 13DEC03 744
8 BA 179 27 LHR 4 JFK 7 1830 2115 0 30NOV03 14DEC03 772
9 BA 179 13 LHR 4 JFK 7 1830 2115 0 01DEC03 15DEC03 744
10 BA 183 2 LHR 4 JFK 7 2000 2245 0 02DEC03 16DEC03 744
11 BA 183 X26 LHR 4 JFK 7 2000 2245 0 26NOV03 15DEC03 744
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Delboy
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:47 am


Wow, that's better than our local bus service.

Thanks for the info.
 
LH423
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:56 am

wouldn't be surprised to see JFK be one of the first routes to see the 773ER.Too much economy capacity on the route.But it depends on the configuration of the 773ERs.

That's absolutely correct and it's for this reason that BA flights their lower density 744s on the JFK flights (14/70/30/177 v 14/38/36/263).

LH423
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A340600
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 1:58 am

All these 744s and none at LGW  Sad
Sam Sad
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gigneil
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 2:07 am

I think the reason BA flies lower density 744s to JFK is due to the high volume of J class passengers.

The 773ER and 744 are both overkill for the JFK route in terms of capability. A regular old 773 with some Trent 895s and a massive first and business section would serve this shuttle route just fine.

N
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 2:08 am

I wonder why BA don't put an all Club aircraft on this route, like a shuttle - 7 a day is great for businessmen, but they must struggle to fill the back of all 7, even with such a tiny Y cabin.
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Shamrock_747
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 3:36 am

It seems there is a very high demand for Club on the JFK route - on my JFK-LHR flight in August all of the upper deck was full and most passengers looked like they were travelling on business. It would be interesting to see what the loads are in Y and Y+.

Declan.
 
LH423
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 3:48 am

Actually, JGPH1A, I can attest that most of the time BA will leave with at most 20 seats open (I'm a BA employee and if it's slow on the counter I check to see how other cities are doing). Even the morning flight, BA178, goes out full a lot of the time, and morning flights generally don't do as well as afternoon/evening flights. BA has spent a long time building up these routes into NYC, and everything is very calculated. Also, when you add the 19 weekly flights out of EWR, they can pull capacity if they don't need it.

There is a high business demand on the LON-NYC route. As I said, the typical configuration on a NYC-LON flight will have 70 J seats and usually the loads are booked over 50 or 60. That alone can make the flight profitable.

LH423
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bmacleod
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 3:54 am

The 744 is BA's flagship airliner; it would be like United phasing out the 777.
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 4:04 am

THe B 747-400 is also United's flagship airliner.
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 9:18 am

I think right now BA is looking at the economics of operating the A380 VERY carefully before buying the plane. I think BA will get the A380 but not until after 2009, when BA will accelerate the pace of 747-400 retirements.

The A380-800 could be enormously profitable for BA since it could allow BA to install larger First and Club World (Business) class seating areas than they could do for the 744. I can imagine nearly 1/3 of the main deck space is dedicated to First class seating and nearly 1/2 of the upper deck space is dedicated for Club World seating.
 
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 9:31 am

BA retiring the 744 in favor of a twin would be a big marketing mistake. Yes, I know the twins are very efficient, and not uncomfortable, but part of BA's premium image rests on being an operator of the most prestigious equipment, whether it was Comet, Concorde, or 747. For example, here in the NYC area BA and Virgin tend to be the frequent flyer's airline of choice to the UK because they are known to operate larger aircraft, whereas all of the US carriers operate twins to Europe. There are many frequent travelers, many that pay up for First and Club class, that prefer a large, 4-engine aircraft for longhaul flight. Virgin Atlantic has identified this trend and has always operated 4-engine aircraft exclusively. Even Emirates, once exclusively a large twin operator, is moving up to to quads for its longer range operations. I am a loyal BA passenger with a few hundred thousand Executive Club miles, but given a choice of Virgin's new 4-engine Airbuses vs a long 777, I'd go with VS. With Concorde gone and without the 744, BA would be just another European airline like Air France or Lufthansa without a 'prestige' aircraft in its fleet.
 
LH423
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 10:56 am

With Concorde gone and without the 744, BA would be just another European airline like Air France or Lufthansa without a 'prestige' aircraft in its fleet.

Correct me if I'm wrong here but both Lufthansa and Air France have 744s in their fleets as well. Maybe not the 50+ that BA does, but at this stage BA and AF have very similar fleets, with both mainline airlines operating 737s, 747s, 777s, and A32X planes. Only instead of massive fleets of 747s and 777s like BA, AF also has A330/340s. LH is similar with 737 and 747 fleets (the second largest in Europe if I'm not mistaken) and then fleets of A330s and A340s.

LH423
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 2:21 pm

Going back to the original question, I don't think the 744's will be retired from the BA fleet within the next 10 years. Most of them are still what would be considered as new. The last BA 744 I was on (G-BYGB) was JFKLHR 19OCT03 and it was spotless inside and outside. It looked like it had been delivered the week before even though the delivery date was 17JAN99.

Compared to the BA 767 fleet, who's future is still undecided (I believe) still do not have PTV's or even the new World Traveller/Club/First seats. They maintain the B-747-400 like their going to be around for at least the next decade.

Now if they were to sell some 744's to CX, it would probably be the older ones that were delivered in the late 80's, early 90's since the new ones have a long life ahead of them.


"JGPH1A - I wonder why BA don't put an all Club aircraft on this route, like a shuttle - 7 a day is great for businessmen, but they must struggle to fill the back of all 7, even with such a tiny Y cabin."

Actually, on most days F/J/W and M from JFK are packed with alot of overselling going on. Every seat in every cabin was taken on my last flight.
BA178 (the 1 morning departure from JFK) does well but the real money makers are the 6 other PM departures from JFK.

Recently I started watching traffic patterns from our big gateways like JFK, BOS, IAD, and LAX. A lot of the time our Prem, Gold and Silv PAX have to be UPG just to free up some seats in the M/W cabins. That's another reason I think the 744's will be around for a long while.

BAJax

[Edited 2003-11-22 06:24:58]
 
LH423
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sat Nov 22, 2003 3:38 pm

BAJax: You work in res? Ah, so you're my new worst enemy. If only you knew the crap you guys put us through on the front lines  Acting devilish

No, in all serious though, of the big stations (JFK, BOS, LAX, IAD, and MIA) it's not uncommon for us to actually have to do double jumps...as in some passengers booked in economy will actually receive club, just because we know we're gonna have to do them anyway. I've seen days where we've been overbooked by 60. Although the past few days we've been oversold in every cabin on both of our evening flights out BOS (BA212/214). I've been off  Smile

LH423
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sun Nov 23, 2003 7:21 am

LH423/ I will "kind of" agree with you about the crap that the counters have to deal with. The really sad thing is a lot of it can be handled in res but if you get a SUP that has no clue, their cop-out is to just send it the the counter on day of dep. I think that's really pathetic. I promise I don't send anything to the airport unless they are paying w/cash. Loyalty, Trade, and Holidays are all veterans. They don't send stupid crap to the counter, Direct and dumb SUPs  Yeah sure (and everyone in the YTO office) do.

Having said that, it's also a two way street. We have nothing to do with baggage but a couple of months ago there was an average of 1 hour waits to get through to the Loyalty Dept because the baggage info line was in overflow and they were forwarding them to us. For 2 + weeks we had nothing but 200 calls in queue waiting to call us every name in the book.  Nuts 8 hours of that, 5 days a weeks is not fun at all, for something that we had nothing to do with, or could do anything about. It got so bad that we had to create a way to have some fun so we started creating different names for ourselves to start the call with. One of the real cool ladies on the floor went from "Barbie" to "Muffin" to "Regina Fellangi" to "Cookie" to "Mrs Kat Meows" to "Mrs Dixie Normous", etc. That's how bad it was.

People seem to have all the balls in the world when they are on the phone.  Pissed


I've noticed the "Double Jumps" are quite often, especially lately. I'll usually pull some random names off the manifest (Prem, Gold, & Silv), print them out, and pull up the DCS record the next day to see who sat where. Sometimes it's kind of interesting. That's during LowVol time in the office.

In your profile it says you flew on Concorde. Was it the staff flight from BOS in OCT? We had lots of staff from our office on the flight that day. I was lucky enough to win a seat (with "Mrs. Dixie Normous") on the IADJFK flight the next week.

PS... As an extra note. We came across a PNR today that the BA office in TAS, Uzbekistan created and ticketed. It was a $190 ticket on DL to go JFK-TPA-JFK. I don't know that in the world they were/are thinking.

PSS... They wanted to re-route. It didn't happen. Big grin

BAJax

[Edited 2003-11-22 23:43:32]
 
ZK-NBT
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sun Nov 23, 2003 12:25 pm

Of course BA will retire the 747-400 oneday but not for another probably 15 years. They need the capacity of this aircraft for long haul routes and plus the fact they Heathrow is so slot restricted, I think they will take probably 15-20 A380's in the future for Asian routes which are very high capacity routes but liek Ray said above probably not until about 2010, the 773ER is a good idea for US routes that don't need 744's capacity although they have similar capacity.

It is amazing that they don't use any out of LGW though but I guess BA's highest capacity routes operate from LHR mainly.

Do BA have any plans for any new destinations? I would like to see them back in NZ.
 
airxliban
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sun Nov 23, 2003 3:27 pm

personally i think that it will be a sad day when that final 744 leaves BA's fleet.

they are stunning.

i would think it would be at least 10 years before this awful day arrives.

and i hope that the replacement is not the 773ER.

just like JGPH1A said...whats the fun in operatings a long tube. 744 is the Queen of the skies.

i'll probably shed a tear or two on that day. i love those 744s.

i do hope that something worthy does replace it.

Air Liban
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lehpron
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sun Nov 23, 2003 6:20 pm

Even if they purchase some A380's, I doubt they will, unless Boeing can improve on it.
The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
 
JBirdAV8r
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Sun Nov 23, 2003 6:29 pm

BAJax,

You work in that big office building with the BA ribbon off of JTB (Flytele)? Always wanted a job out there  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

To add my $.02....744 is the flagship of MOST airlines that operate it, isn't it?
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
Guest

RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Mon Nov 24, 2003 6:16 am

JBirdAV8r:

Yup, that's my building.

I think there is a new training class that begins 08DEC03, I think? One of the few airlines that are hiring.

It's actually a pretty nice place to work. The building is beautiful inside and out. There are two types of people who work here, the kind that enjoy what they do and like airlines and/or staff travel benefits and things like that. The others are just waiting for something better to come along and complain about every little thing, like with anywhere. I just block most of it out. I like working for a huge airline like BA. Plus I would have never been able to fly on Concorde twice without my job.

[Edited 2003-11-23 22:18:19]
 
maiznblu_757
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Mon Nov 24, 2003 6:34 am

Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Yes, someday they will replace the 747-400.
 
donder10
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RE: Will BA Ever Retire The 747-400?

Mon Nov 24, 2003 6:37 am

A340600,
SLIGHT chance LGW may see 1 more daily BA 744 but unlikely and 0 chance if UK-US Open Skies occur.