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British Airways to make those with cheapest fares board plane last

British Airways is set to make passengers who have paid the lowest fares board the plane last from next month

British Airways is set to make passengers who have paid the lowest fares board the plane last from next month.

The airline is to introduce the new “group boarding” system on all its European flights from 12 December.

When a passenger checks in they will be put into groups numbered from one to five. This number will then be displayed prominently on the boarding pass, printed or mobile. The lower the number, the earlier the passenger will be allowed to board.

The system was outlined by BA in an internal newsletter, which said: “This method has been used all around the world by many airlines and aligns BA with partners American Airlines and Iberia.

“Group boarding simplifies the process, making it easier for customers to understand the boarding sequence at the gate.”

The groups are as follows:

1: Gold members of British Airways Executive Club; First Class passengers on long-haul flights; short-haul business class travellers.
2: Silver members; long-haul business class travellers
3. Bronze Executive Club members; premium economy travellers
4. Economy passengers with no special status
5. Passengers on the cheapest, hand-baggage only fares.

Passengers with mobility issues and those travelling with young children will still be given priority, as will those with frequent flyer status through BA’s Oneworld alliance.

A spokesperson for British Airways said: “We are always looking at ways to improve the airport experience for our customers. Earlier this year we were the first UK airline to introduce automated biometric technology, with the launch of self-service boarding gates, and we also installed self-service bag drop points at Heathrow and Gatwick giving our customers an even quicker check-in experience.

“Next month we are looking at introducing new boarding procedures to further improve the customer journey by creating a number of groups to speed up the process. This method has been used by airlines around the world for a number of years, including by our partners American Airlines, Iberia and Qatar.”

  • Eunice McCarthy 21/11/2017

    If the price difference between BA and other low cost airlines was not excessive, I used to always choose BA.
    I usually travel for three to four nights, quite a few times throughout the year, and find that I am able to get the
    majority of my needs into one carry on bag.
    i have been a blue member for as long as I can remember and despite travelling many times with BA remain on that level
    BA clearly are gearing towards their elite members, if they persist, all I can say is Easy Jet here I come!

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