British Airways Hints At Big Announcement Coming Tomorrow

British Airways is hinting at something big that’s expected to be announced tomorrow, February 1, 2019. They uploaded a short six second clip to YouTube titled “British Airways – It’s coming… #BA100.”

In the video they show a British Airways 787 being backed out of a hanger, with the “BA100” logo clearly displayed on it. The only text reads “DEPARTING 01.02.2019.”

Here’s the video:

On the surface you might think that this is just some sort of basic 100 year celebration, though it sure appears like there’s more to this.

We know that British Airways will be introducing some planes in retro liveries, so my first thought was that maybe they’ll be unveiling their first plane in one of these liveries. However, we know that’s not the case, because British Airways has revealed that the first plane to get a retro livery will be a 747, and that will be unveiled on February 18, 2019.

So, what could be happening? Could British Airways be unveiling their new Club World seat, could they be announcing some other innovation, or is this just a general party?

Well, there’s a second thing that makes this even more interesting. Oneworld is also having a big event in London on February 1, 2019. It’s expected that all oneworld CEOs will be in attendance, with the exception of Qatar Airways’ Akbar Al Baker.

Keep in mind that Qatar Airways owns a significant stake in IAG, the parent company of British Airways, which leads me to believe that there may be a big oneworld angle to all of this, given Qatar Airways’ current challenges with oneworld. If this were purely British Airways focused, I imagine Al Baker would be there, given that he has such a close connection to IAG.

At the same time, oneworld CEOs recently met in New York for the announcement that Royal Air Maroc would be joining the alliance, so it’s a bit surprising to see them all meeting again.

So yeah, I have no clue what’s going to be announced, though it sounds to me like this could be quite interesting. Hopefully it’s more interesting than when Qatar Airways for weeks teased the hashtag #LikeNeverBefore, only to release a minute-long (and totally mediocre) brand film.

Anyone care to guess what’s being announced tomorrow in London by British Airways and oneworld?

(Tip of the hat to Brad B)

Comments

  1. I suspect they’ll announce that they’re giving Endre a free ticket in Club World so he can finally fly longhaul premium. Congrats Endre!

  2. BA said on twitter a few days ago that this event would be their 100th anniversary (Daimler Airways formed in 1919 and later formed Imperial Airways which later formed British Airways LTD which later formed BOAC which then turned into modern BA). It also looks like they’ll be painting three more aircraft (a grand total of 3 747s and 1 A319) in retro liveries to celebrate the event.

  3. Feb 1, 2019 is also the 20th anniversary of the formation of Oneworld. I guess BA decided to time whatever they are announcing for their 100th anniversary to coincide with that.

  4. They have another animation on their website for the same date that is flicking through tickets for BA100 with various British celebrities’ names on them so I’m thinking it may just be some sort of party honestly. Hopefully not though!

  5. It’s just the first airing of their new ad for their centenary media campaign. It’s their largest media campaign since the London Olympics.

  6. @ Ben — All new Avios program, which will be a massive devaluation, marketed as the greatest thing ever.

  7. BA renaming their Avios program Blavios, with marketing and logo provided by same company that did Bonvoy.

  8. LHR-SYD non stop. Dream on. With what aircraft?

    Twenty years ago BA’s Australian route network looked like this:
    LHR-PER via SIN or KUL. LHR-BNE via KUL. LHR-SYD via BKK. LHR-SYD via SIN. LHR-MEL via SIN.

    Twelve years ago it looked like this:
    LHR-MEL via SIN. LHR-SYD via BKK. LHR-SYD via SIN.

    And today:
    LHR-SYD via SIN. It has traffic rights to carry passengers LHR-SYD-LHR, LHR-SIN-LHR and SIN-SYD-SIN. Only through that combination of traffic does BA fill its daily 777-300. There would be no benefit for them in flying LHR-SYD non stop.

    @ miles the BA JFK Concorde flight numbers were BA001 and BA002 – the same that the LCY-JFK all J class service now uses.

  9. Interesting as there’s an advert for this in the London paper and actress Olivia Coleman’s name features on a mocked up ticket sitting in seat 11C, departing London for “the world”…

  10. Perhaps have finally found 2 engines for the 787 that’s been parked by the threshold of 27L for about a year?

  11. I guess their PR team has concocted a bit of fluffery that will be met with a big yawn by all, other than the assembled bigwigs.
    Really, how much lipstick can you possibly put on this pig?

  12. Shame it won’t be their new uniform launching.

    Or maybe they’re helping me & my hubby celebrate our 9th wedding manniversary?

  13. Setting up an EU subsidiary and going back to BOAC and BEA to comply with EU ownership and control regulations post-Brexit? 🙂 Would be a more accurate reflection of their “100th birthday”, too (#BA100 is posted everywhere)

  14. Al Baker is actually in London and has been spotted at a hotel yesterday (incl. photo evidence). Just FYI. However, your assumption that it might be underwhelming (similarly to the QR video) appears to be correct, with just a new video ad.

  15. Don’t want to say ‘told you so’ but told you so. The new airing of BA’s ad pertaining to its centenary will air tonight (and is already available online).

  16. Yes it’s an advert a bit like Qatar but look very closely at the seat Olivia Coleman is sitting in right at the end of the adver when she says they serve a lot of tea. Don’t know about you but that looks like a type of suite style of seat.

  17. @ John Reeve

    It looks to me like the current CW seat – the stepped channel in which the divider screen raises looks exactly the same as now.

    The whole advert was a ghastly, cheesy nonsense, bolstering all of the UK’s tragic self-delusions about how wonderful and exceptional we are.

    As an Englishman, the smugly self-satisfied boasting was everything I think we are not about.

    The hint about being closet revolutionaries (nicely done with what I guess we are meant to assume was a gay couple) was the only thing I thought perceptive: contrary to our sense of self, Britain’s/England’s histories are littered with examples of our ideological passions driving us to do revolutionary things, from being the first European state to execute our monarch – to replace them with a republic (albeit a failed one) – to our current Brexit insanity. We pretend we are rational and measured but history says otherwise.

    See, it’s made me rant now. Typical Englishman.

  18. @The nice Paul
    That was an incredibly boring comment. It’s a shame as otherwise I normally like reading your offerings.

  19. @ Aaron Tan

    Sorry you didn’t like that one, though I’m glad you mostly enjoy the others.

    Brexit is poisoning everything in the UK at the moment, especially anything that reeks of nostalgia for the Good Old Days when God was an Englishman and spinsters cycled around the village green on their way to Sunday church…

    BA, for me, normally gets the emotional content pretty well, which is unsurprising given I’m their target market (“To fly, to serve” was, for me, a brilliantly evocative advert). But this one didn’t do it.

    Anyhow, I’ll try harder with my next comment. 😉

  20. And just be grateful I haven’t risen to the bait of the ludicrous NZ safety film, most of which my old ears can’t even understand…

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