British Airways is to cut in half its business-only flights from London City Airport to New York from October 30.
BA will now offer only one transatlantic all-business flights daily on weekdays from the Docklands hub.
The service, using A318, required a stop-over in Shannon, Ireland, to take on more fuel with the chance to clear US customs during the wait as an added convenience. This time-saver, as well as the prospect of bringing New York closer to Canary Wharf and the City, was heralded as a major breakthrough for BA and London City when it was launched in 2009.
A British Airways spokesman “We constantly evaluate the commercial performance of our entire global network and will increase or reduce our schedules as we feel appropriate.”
It is understood that British Airways plans to offer a single departure at 9.45am daily, cancelling the 4pm service. It will offer only one return flight from JFK airport, New York, at 6.55pm, cancelling the 9.55pm. The cost for a return ticket is around £3,650.
No specific reason has been given for the reduced service by BA owner IAG did warn that it was anticipating a weakened trade environment following the Brexit vote. In addition, reduced staffing at Shannon meant that, from next month, only the early flight could take advantage of US Customs on Irish soil.
BA said: “Changes in the staffing regime at Shannon Airport, by the US Customs and Border Protection has shortened the opening hours of their pre-clearance facility in Shannon.”
Despite a number of carriers encountering difficulties sustaining business-only transatlantic crossing, newcomer Odyssey Airlines still plans to launch a service from London City next year.