View Full Version : BA & Virgin to restart Baghdad service?

huw stunn
17th Apr 2003, 19:14
Sir Wichard Beard making lots of PR on the UK news about VS planning to operate to BGW.

Last UK scheduled flights that I remember were BA Tristar's back in late 1980's. Don't they still hold the route licences ? I haven't seen anything in the CAA Official Records which show that he has applied for the licence.
But then really meaning to operate shouldn't get in the way of a good bit of PR should it ?

My guess is that we will see a scheduled BA 767 there before long.

17th Apr 2003, 20:01
More self publicity from the bearded one i think.

i seem to remember that he was going to buy BA when their shares hit 3 - they are now at 1.20 - off to the bank for the dosh then Mr B.

Oh, and now he wants to but concorde for 1 - again more self publicity.
Any of us could but ccde for a quid, that's the easy bit - running it at a profit is what is hard.

But give him his due, he IS very good at publicity. It's just a shame that it never seems to amount to anything.


Notso Fantastic
17th Apr 2003, 20:27
Why has he ditched the pullover for......a smart jacket? Is he going ........serious all of a sudden? But what incredible publicity for a single bloody charity flight!

17th Apr 2003, 23:05
What, he ditched the pullover?!?! No, surely not.................

Maybe he thought THAT in itself would generate some publicity, eh?


18th Apr 2003, 04:01
Hear hear the mans a complete joke, anything for a bit of publicity pity the media give him any credance!!.About time he started treating and paying his staff properly.:E

18th Apr 2003, 04:12
Whilst I wouldn't want anyone to think I'm a Virgin lover (damn - that was another of those publicity stickers wasn't it) but maybe PSYCOBFH is being a little disingenuous. The bearded one is running an airline that's still in business and keeping people in employment.

That's a bit of an achievement in itself, isn't it?

18th Apr 2003, 06:11
Why is it that people who are good at publicity get up others' noses so much? Pooh-poohing Branson's skill at it doesn't diminish his achievements and in this particular case it just takes the posting off-topic.

Now think for a minute about a London Baghdad link. That route is likely to go off the charts for the next five years. And well over half the payload are likely to be US citizens. Would you prefer it just be left to AA and UA?

18th Apr 2003, 06:33
I notice he has painted on the side of some of his a/c :

'More experience than our name suggests' !

Makes me smile whenever I taxi past them .....

You got to hand it to the chap, he built up the airline himself against all odds from emense competion from a nationalized airline .......

Try reading his autobiography ..... he is not just a chap in a woolly jumper ! (Not that he will need that in Baghdad !).

18th Apr 2003, 16:24
My money is on bmed to baghdad by the end of the year. The only prob is will the 320/1 be able to take all the cargo that will be a big part of the traffic on the route.

Press To Transmit
18th Apr 2003, 16:38
Love him or hate him.....you've got to admire his marketing skills in never missing an opportunity.

With all the foreign aid that is going to be pumped into Iraq, the salesman with his foot in the door is going to reap the benefits of being the 'early bird'.

Pity Mr PM & Big Air Birdways weren't in there first offering humanitarian support & free flights to Iraqi refugees wanting to return to their homeland.

If Big Air Birdways do still hold the licences to Baghdad you can bet your bottom dollar that The Bearded One will put up a good flight in the name of humanitarianism.....

Go get 'em Dicky..... :cool: :ok:

18th Apr 2003, 17:08
Hear hear the mans a complete joke

Plus he has balls and is an extremely successful businessman. Don't you wish you could be like him Stampe?

18th Apr 2003, 17:20
My moneys on Bmed being there within a year.

This is really their sort of thing. They have still been operating to Amman, Beirut, Damascus and Tehran during the entirety of the conflict

18th Apr 2003, 17:27
the B.A. rout licence was lhr-cai -bagdad and back via cai
and it was with the L.1011. i operated one of the last flight in and out acording to my log book.

18th Apr 2003, 18:01
If the speculation is correct, the loads may well justify a larger aircraft than a bmed 321! I imagine Virgin will be thinking of something bigger!

18th Apr 2003, 18:30
Qatar Airways will commence operations to Baghdad before the end of the year.

18th Apr 2003, 18:48
Virgin operated a number of humanitarian flights into Kuwait at the end of the last Gulf war; why should the proposal to do the same kind of thing now be so controversial? They will have to be operated by someone, and I believe that the humanitarian flights will be at no cost to Iraq or the charities and humanitarian organisations who will use them.

As for ongoing commercial operations, surely any existing UK-Iraq route licences will be null and void and new ones will need negotiating? With the scale of the reconstruction effort likely to be huge, there will be room for many airlines from many countries to operate into Baghdad, and other Iraqi airports. Virgin is simply the first of the high-profile carriers to announce its intentions. There will be many others.

18th Apr 2003, 19:26
Digitalis-The old agreements do still stand.look at former yugoslavia-all agreements are still in place, even those that were implemented during Milosovic, same with Afghanistan, although they have created new ones, since ariana got new aircraft, but they still operate on old agreements, therefore ba has the upper hand at the mo and bearing in mind that last new mainline route to open was heathrow to luanda (angola).

21st Apr 2003, 06:26
LONDON (AP) -- British Airways said Sunday it will resume flights from London to Baghdad as soon as it is assured by the British government that Iraq is stable.

The airline canceled its service between the two capitals shortly before the 1991 Gulf War.

Rod Eddington, British Airways' chief executive, said the airline has been in discussions with the British government about providing relief flights and resuming scheduled services to Baghdad. "We have a long history of flying to Iraq and are keen to re-establish regular services as soon as political stability and security return to the country," said Eddington. "We have the rights to fly to Iraq and we are now awaiting confirmation from the British government that it is safe to return."

The airline plans to operate a Boeing 767 three times a week from London's Heathrow Airport to Baghdad.

British Airways first suspended flights to Baghdad during the Iran-Iraq war. The service resumed in November 1988 but was halted again in February 1990.

21st Apr 2003, 08:15
Good job BA, let's try and get back to regular schedule. My best wishes to the crew who work this leg.


21st Apr 2003, 08:37
Haven't heard about the plans of Air Canada, Air France and Lufthansa.

To the victors go the spoils...

21st Apr 2003, 10:47
Where the hell are they gonna park? I thought the terminal was destroyed.

White Knight
21st Apr 2003, 11:51
??? The last time I looked you only need some hard flat concretey bit to park on...;) ;) ;)

21st Apr 2003, 21:46
Me thinks that whoever flies more humanitarian aid into Baghdad will get their permission to go there first. Iraq needs to rebuild a bit and be safer before passenger services commence. So, if you fly in with tons of food and medicines, you will probably be lucky enough to be allowed tofly passenger services first.

21st Apr 2003, 22:13
Rather them than me.I think this part of the world will be very dangerous for some time to come (especially for aircraft with a Union Jack on the tail).

Engine overtemp
21st Apr 2003, 23:12
very dangerous for some time to come (especially for aircraft with a Union Jack on the tail).
Should be safe for BA then! :ok:

21st Apr 2003, 23:42
Airbubba - BA have the rights under an air services agreement signed between the UK and Iraq in 1951...

Dan Loader
22nd Apr 2003, 00:06
Looks like we could see a major legal battle if BA get the green light but Virgin are turned down by the CAA...

22nd Apr 2003, 00:57
I think the countries, including the UK, who achieved the liberation of the Iraqis from Saddam's brutal regime will have much influence in the rebuilding.

The countries who supported Saddam will find their influence lessened.

Not sure what happened to my earlier post, perhaps it wasn't politically correct to offer such an obvious observation.

22nd Apr 2003, 03:52
From BBC News: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/2962221.stm BA are in talks to start a 3 times weekly service to Baghdad using B763 equipment. Seems "highly unlikely" to be BMed!

Mister Geezer
22nd Apr 2003, 05:24
Good to see that Qatar are sticking by their guns. Their CEO said some time back that they would of started a route to SDA if Iraq was stable. Nice to see that they are still wanting to fly the route.

22nd Apr 2003, 08:15
Out of interest, anyone know why they've chosen a 767?