British Airways’ Famous BA1 Flight Number Returns… For One Day Only

British Airways’ Famous BA1 Flight Number Returns… For One Day Only

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British Airways is bringing back a famous flight number in a few weeks, but only for one flight.

BA1 will operate from London to New York on November 8

On Monday, November 8, 2021, British Airways will be operating a flight to New York with a special flight number. Specifically, British Airways will operate flight BA1 from London (LHR) to New York (JFK) as the first flight that day. The 7hr45min flight is scheduled to depart at 8:30AM and arrive at 11:15AM.

BA1 is making a comeback (for one day)!

British Airways will use an Airbus A350-1000 for this service, featuring a total of 331 seats. This includes 56 business class seats, 56 premium economy seats, and 219 economy seats.

While nothing has been officially announced, it seems highly likely that this flight is intended to celebrate the United States lifting travel restrictions against the United Kingdom. As of November 8, 2021, vaccinated Brits will once again be able to travel to the United States. Best I can tell, this early morning departure will be British Airways’ first flight to the United States under the new rules.

Interestingly the flight seems to be sold out in business class, even though not a single seat shows as occupied on the seatmap. This leads me to believe that British Airways may be planning something special for this flight — I’m not sure if it’ll be for media, or something else.

British Airways’ A350 business class

The significance of the BA1 flight number

Airlines place varying significance on flight numbers:

  • Some airlines use flight numbers totally randomly
  • Some airlines use the lowest flight numbers (like 1 & 2) for the most premium and flagship routes
  • Some airlines use the lowest flight numbers based on some historical significance

In the case of British Airways, the BA1 flight number used to be exclusively used for Concorde flights to New York, which was at one point British Airways’ flagship flight.

The Concorde stopped flying in 2003, and then the flight number wasn’t used for a while. However, British Airways brought back the BA1 flight number with its Club World London City service. This is the 32-seat all business class Airbus A318 that British Airways flew between London City and New York JFK for over a decade.

British Airways’ A318 business class

Unfortunately it was announced in 2020 that the Club World London City service would be discontinued permanently.

It remains to be seen if British Airways will once again use the BA1 flight number for a route on a more permanent basis, or if this is truly just a one-off.

Bottom line

On November 8, 2021, British Airways will operate BA1 from London to New York, to celebrate the reopening of travel between the UK and the US. I would guess there may be some celebrations on this flight, but who knows. This is a significant flight number for British Airways, as this was the flight number used first for the Concorde, and then for the Club World London City service.

Do you think British Airways will bring back the BA1 flight number on any route on a permanent basis?

(Tip of the hat to The Flight Detective)

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  1. Azamaraal Guest

    Loved our flight on BA1 Concorde in 2003.

    The hilarious part was that because of ancient (60's) technology Concorde was delayed almost 5 hours because 1) they couldn't start the only special legacy tractor used to move Concorde to the ramp and then 2) they had a pressure problem with the fuel tanks (ended up being a duff sensor).

    We sent the kids ahead on the 747 flight expecting them to arrive after us. We...

    Loved our flight on BA1 Concorde in 2003.

    The hilarious part was that because of ancient (60's) technology Concorde was delayed almost 5 hours because 1) they couldn't start the only special legacy tractor used to move Concorde to the ramp and then 2) they had a pressure problem with the fuel tanks (ended up being a duff sensor).

    We sent the kids ahead on the 747 flight expecting them to arrive after us. We were so delayed they checked into the hotel and were asleep before we arrived.

    But the 5 hours in the Concorde lounge was wonderful with all the Pimms, Champagne and strawberries we could handle while watching Wimbledon Tennis. A life moment for sure.

    I think they should not reintroduce BA1 until the next SST is flying.

  2. Marc Guest

    Hi Lucky,

    I agree with Niles. The comments don’t make much sense when displayed in any other order than date posted. Of course with the newest comments last.
    It would be great to fix this.

    Friendly thanks in advance.

  3. François Guest

    I'd love for them to bring back BA 1, if only because my flight on the baby bus got cancelled due to wind conditions at LCY, hah.

    1. Eskimo Guest

      And my Concorde got cancelled because the cartel is gouging the price of oil and some madman flew into WTC.

      20 years later, the cartel is gouging again, and some virus flew into our population.

      RIP supersonic then, RIP quad engine planes today.

      747 340 380 was a fun journey.

  4. Frederik Guest

    Anybody had any success calling British Airways recently. I am a Gold member but have not been able to connect with am agent, instead 2 minutes of waffle about how busy they are, then when finally I thought I was in a queue, they disconnect the call and say agents cannot answer right now mid afternoon London time. A shocking airline.

  5. bey Guest

    What happened to the babybus aircraft?

    1. Niles Guest

      Lucky, always been a great fan of the site. But the way the comment section is working right now, is just not working for me and actually driving me away from the site. Please re-install the chronilogic order of the comments (from the first one on top, the the newest one on the bottom). Maybe I'm standing alone in this, but to me the new comment section is confusing and frustrating.

      Anyhow, I enjoyed this report! Keep em coming.

      Cheers

  6. Sam G Guest

    Hi Ben - H/T to flyertalk - it's a joint press trip with Virgin to celebrate the reopening to Brits.

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Marc Guest

Hi Lucky, I agree with Niles. The comments don’t make much sense when displayed in any other order than date posted. Of course with the newest comments last. It would be great to fix this. Friendly thanks in advance.

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Niles Guest

Lucky, always been a great fan of the site. But the way the comment section is working right now, is just not working for me and actually driving me away from the site. Please re-install the chronilogic order of the comments (from the first one on top, the the newest one on the bottom). Maybe I'm standing alone in this, but to me the new comment section is confusing and frustrating. Anyhow, I enjoyed this report! Keep em coming. Cheers

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21five Guest

Scrapped.

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