British Airways

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British Airways flights and information

British Airways Check-in | British Airways baggage allowance | British Airways legroom

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Contact details


Reservations and general enquiries: 0844 493 0787 (6am-8pm daily).


British Airways

5 reasons to fly with British Airways

  • Even in the cheapest seats passengers have a generous (free) cabin baggage allowance. The maximum weight is 23kg; make sure you can lift it into the overhead bin by yourself. You can also bring a laptop or purse. The hold luggage allowance varies by route and class. It’s one bag (up to 23kg) for Domestic, Euro Travellers and World Travellers and increases with class. First-Class passengers may bring three bags, weighing up to 32kg (BA will waive their heavy bag charge).Baggage allowance
  • Seating
  • Booking fees
  • Meals and snacks
  • In-flight entertainment

British Airways Check-in

BA recommends online check-in (and printing off a boarding pass) via, which can be done from 24 hours before your flight. Checking-in times vary according to airport. At London Heathrow and Gatwick airports the desks close 45 minutes before the flight departs, while in smaller airports this can be as late as 20 minutes. “Fast bag drop” machines are available in many airports to drop off any hold luggage if you’ve checked in online or used one of the self-service check-in kiosks.

British Airways baggage allowance

Hand luggage: each passenger can carry one standard sized bag (56 x 45 x 25cm) and one laptop bag or handbag (45cm x 36cm x 20cm). The bag must be able to fit easily in the bag gauge at the airport.

Checked: varies by destination. For all routes except Brazil, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and direct connections between India and the USA, or Bermuda and Canada, the free checked allowance (in World Traveller or Euro Traveller Domestic) is one bag with a maximum weight of 23kg and maximum dimensions of 90 x 75 x 43cm. For the above exceptions, the free checked allowance is two standard-sized bags weighing up to 23kg each.

Excess: extra baggage allowance can be purchased via the Manage My Booking section. If you pitch up at the airport with a bag that weighs more than 23kg but less than 32kg, the charge is £40 or the local equivalent ($60 from US airports). Heavy bag charges are waived for some customers – Gold and Silver Executive Club members, First, Club World and Club Europe customers, American Airlines Platinum Plus members and Iberia Plus Platinum members. The first extra bag over the free baggage allowance is charged at £28 per bag online or £35 per bag at the airport for domestic UK, European and Russian flights. On international flights the charge is £34 per bag online or £40 per bag at the airport. Further extra bag charges are £77 per bag online or £90 per bag at the airport.

British Airways legroom

Seat pitch: 79cm (31in) in Economy Class, 96cm (38in) in Premium Economy, 185cm (73in) in Business Class and 198cm (78in) in First Class.

Pre-arranged seating

All passengers are assigned a seat at check-in. On UK domestic and Euro Traveller flights, all passengers can reserve their seat free 24 hours before departure via online check-in or can reserve seats during booking (up to 25 hours before departure) for a fee of £10 (€12 or $15).

Families travelling with infants and small children can select their seats free from the time of booking or will be allocated a seat by BA three days before take-off. Families with small children (not infants) can purchase their favourite seats for £10 (€12 or $15).

In World Traveller Class, passengers can select their seats free at check-in (available 24 hours before departure). The charge is £25 (€30 or $38) to choose seats (from booking flights up to 25 hours before take-off).

Exit-row seats cost £50 (€60 or $75) for exit row (between 14 and 4 days before flight is scheduled to take-off).

Seats for travellers with infants may reserve their seats free of charge and cannot purchase seats or exit-row seats.

Passenger change details

Name changes are not permitted, though corrections will be considered. Depending on the type of fare (restricted, non-upgradeable or non-refundable), the date and time of the flight can be changed online at the Manage My Booking channel or by calling the reservations number. There will usually be an admin fee plus any difference in fares.

Child fares

Discounted fares for children aged 2 to 11 are available on most long-haul routes and some short-haul routes, though rates vary. Infants (up to two years) travel for 10 per cent of the adult fare on any of the routes, as long as they are seated on an adult’s lap.

Senior fares

BA does not offer discounts for older travellers.


Pets are carried by British Airways World Cargo and travel in the hold. Guide dogs will be carried free of charge in the cabin on most routes – call the reservations number to book. No pets are permitted on flights from Austria and Denmark.

Carrying musical instruments

Small musical instruments can be carried on the aircraft as standard carry-on items. Larger items must normally be checked in, although it may be possible to buy a separate seat for them.

Carrying sports equipment

Bringing your sports equipment counts against your checked baggage allowance.

Onboard Wi-Fi

Business-Class travellers enjoy wireless access but it’s not available in the Economy seats yet.

In-flight service

The meal service is complimentary in all classes. While meals in First and Club World are designed by the Taste Team, a culinary council of some of the world’s top chefs, restaurateurs and food critics, the service in Economy Class is good. Even on UK Domestic flights you’ll be served a hot breakfast with tea and coffee. On-screen entertainment includes Disney and the Cartoon Network for junior flyers. All World Traveller seats have a personal screen (no charge for headphones) showing the latest films, TV programmes, games, audio books, music and radio.

Air miles

British Airways Executive Club.

Airline food link

Read reviews from fellow flyers and see photographs of BA meals at

Airline alliances

BA is a member of the oneworld alliance and partners with American Airlines and Iberia on Europe-US flights.

Airline overview

British Airways is the country’s flag-carrying airline. Its main hub is at London Heathrow from where it flies to nearly 400 airports.

In recent years, the iconic airline has gone global. It co-operates with American Airlines on scheduling and fares for transatlantic routes and merged with Iberia, the Spanish carrier, in 2011. The new airline – International Airlines Group, IAG – is the third-largest in the world and the second-largest in Europe.

Passengers are able now to purchase and combine fares across BA, AA and Iberia on codeshare routes between the UK and USA and Spain and the USA.

BA has a couple of subsidiary airlines – BA CityFlyer, based at London City Airport, and OpenSkies, a Business-Class only airline, with headquarters in France. Franchise airlines (operating flights on behalf of BA) are Comair, a US carrier, and Sunair of Scandinavia. In November 2011, it was announced that Lufthansa was to sell BMI to IAG.

April 2012: Bmi will be integrated into BA. However, BA will be operating bmi’s summer schedule. Bmi flights in and out of London Heathrow are available to book on If you book bmi flights on and need to change your booking, contact a BA call centre. To check-in online for a bmi flight, visit

Author: Oonagh Shiel (3414 posts)

Content Manager at Cheapflights whose travel life can be best summed up as BC (before children) and PC (post children). We only travel during the school holidays so short-haul trips and staycations are our specialities!