British Airways and Virgin Atlantic limit ticket sales to Heathrow due to strikes

LONDON (Reuters) – British Airways and Virgin Atlantic will limit ticket sales for flights to London’s Heathrow Airport during planned strikes by border agents over Christmas and New Year to reduce disruption, it said on Friday. airlines.

UK Border Force workers at several major UK airports, including the country’s busiest Heathrow, will go on strike for eight days this month over a pay dispute, threatening to slow passenger processing arriving from abroad during the holidays.

A BA spokesperson said the carrier was working with the government and the airport “to ensure we are playing our part in ensuring our customers can travel as planned at this important time of year”.

A Virgin Atlantic spokesperson also said it was working closely with the government to “minimize the impact of Border Force strikes on our customers’ travel.”

The strikes, from December 23-26 and December 28-31, come at one of the busiest times for airlines, and the affected flights were already occupied. Heathrow is a hub for both airlines and BA is the dominant carrier.

British Airways and Virgin Atlantic have also given customers the option to move their travel to a non-strike day, and flight times – as well as ticket restrictions – are being reviewed.

“We intend to run our schedule as planned, with additional flexibility to allow customers to change their flight dates if they wish to avoid arriving on strike days,” the Virgin Atlantic spokesperson said. .

(Reporting by Alistair Smout; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

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