LOGANAIR has announced that it has struck a new codeshare agreement with British Airways to enable islanders to book directly onto services going through three major London airports.
The agreement, which comes into effect on 1 September when Loganair’s existing tie-up with Flybe ends, allows customers to book services through BA’s network at Heathrow, Gatwick and London City, which serves over 200 destinations.
Loganair customers will be able to connect onto BA services in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness with a “through ticket” allowing them to check hold baggage at their departure airport straight through to their ultimate destination.
Shetland MSP Tavish Scott welcomed the news and immediately called for Flybe – which starts operating its own daily flights in and out of the islands at the end of this month – to strike a similar arrangement with Loganair.
“Many Shetland folk and tourism businesses need codeshare between airlines,” he said. “So Loganair’s deal with BA is good news. I expect Flybe to behave professionally and agree similar terms with Loganair. That would help islanders. It will be a further test of the impending changes from the beginning of September.”
Loganair’s flights between the Highlands and Islands and Scotland’s four main cities will be eligible for the Scottish Government’s Air Discount Scheme (ADS).
New Loganair services to and from Manchester will also be part of the codeshare.
Although the companies have enjoyed a business relationship stretching over a quarter of a century, it is the first time BA has operated a codeshare with Loganair as an independent airline.
They operated as franchise partners between 1994 and 2008 and since then have operated a codeshare under Loganair’s franchise agreement with Flybe, which is ending after an acrimonious fall-out between the two airlines.
British Airways’ head of alliances Rishi Kapoor said the company was “delighted to be strengthening our business relationship with Loganair” and felt the agreement would “bring enormous benefits to the Highlands and Islands” including a potential boost to its tourism.
Loganair managing director Jonathan Hinkles said the announcement marked a “new and welcome development” in the company’s long-standing partnership with BA.
He added: “This agreement will offer new travel options to customers connecting via Inverness and Manchester, together with excellent connections between British Airways’ global network and Loganair’s extensive services in the Highlands and Islands.”