British Airways took delivery of their first Boeing 787 today and announced Toronto and Newark as the first two destinations for the aircraft. In celebration of taking delivery of the most technologically advance bird in the sky, British Airways is offering “sale” fares to both destinations that the plane will serve.
Flights are now on sale and to celebrate the airline is launching with a fare of £787 return in World Traveller Plus (premium economy) to both cities. Customers can also upgrade to Club World for an additional £787 return (total of £1,574 return per person).
The Boeing 787 will make its initial transatlantic debut in BA colors on September 1, 2013 from London Heathrow to Toronto as flight number BA 93 and will return under flight number BA 92. When Newark comes online on October 1st, BA 187 will take you from London and BA 186 will take you back. The airline currently serves both destinations 2-3x a day with a mixture of 767s and larger 777s.
Yet, before the airline starts flying long-haul transatlantic flights, later this summer the plane will be featured on select domestic and short haul European flights. These “test” flights are to accustom crews to flying the 787. The routes have yet to be announced, so stay tuned!
For travelers looking to jump on board the plane without paying the high price of airfare, consider booking an award ticket! Economy award space to/from Toronto is not looking good in September but gets slightly better in October. An award ticket will cost you 40,000 Avios miles & about $540 in fuel surcharges & taxes. There is very little Premium economy space available on the 787 this fall/early winter and if you’re lucky enough to find space, expect to dish out 60,000 Avios miles & $645 in fees. Business class is slightly easier to find on the 787 and will cost 80,000 Avios miles & $809 in taxes and fees!
For those of you based in the NYC area, award space in Economy is slightly better and can be found on the launch date still! Other fare classes can be difficult to find, but are still available on select dates. Taxes and fees for the EWR route are as follows:
Economy: 40,000 + $552
Economy Plus: 60,000 + $735
Business: 80,000 + $819
The best way to find space on these routes is via AA.com or BA.com depending on what airline miles you plan on spending. Remember that BA is a direct transfer partner of American Express, meaning you can use your Membership Reward points for one of these bookings. In addition, American Air is a BA partner and award bookings can be made on British Airways via AA.com. American Air does collect a similar fuel surcharge as BA, so there is no way around these fees if you’re booking an award ticket. But, remember AA miles are not distance based, so if you’re coming from further away and are connecting via YYZ or EWR, AA AAdvantage miles might be a better option for you! AA charges 20K each way to Europe for off peak economy travel (Oct 15 – May 15) or 30K the rest of the year and 50K for business.
Be sure to check out the new 787 via the British Airways dedicated 787 webpage.