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Yup, I know what you’re thinking… that silly Norwegian is at it again! Scandinavia’s low-cost carrier has been on a long-haul tear recently, adding loads of flights between the US and the UK, Spain and beyond. Now Pittsburgh (PIT) is getting a nonstop to London (LHR) of its own — but the credit goes to a legacy carrier with slightly less aggressive growth plans, instead.
I’m talking about British Airways — the UK’s flag carrier and long-time master of the North Atlantic crossing. BA just announced plans to launch the new Pittsburgh flight, operating four days per week (Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday) with the Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner. Service will begin April 2, 2019, with the following schedule:
- BA170 Pittsburgh (PIT) 10:00pm Departure → London (LHR) 10:35am (+1) Arrival
- BA171 London (LHR) 5:00pm Departure → Pittsburgh (PIT) 8:15pm Arrival
The flights are timed to allow Western PA-based travelers to connect to British Airways flights to more than 130 destinations around the world. The new Pittsburgh flight could also be a good option for award travelers based elsewhere in the US — American Airlines operates PIT service from its major US hubs. BA170 joins Pittsburgh’s other Europe-bound flights, including a seasonal daily to Paris (CDG), operated by a Delta 767, and year-round service to Reykjavik (KEF) on WOW.
British Airways’ 787-8s offer a total of 214 seats, including 154 in economy, arranged in a 3-3-3 configuration, 25 in premium economy (2-3-2) and 35 in business class, with a funky 2-3-2 staggered config.
The airline’s currently adding the new flight to its booking engine — as of now, it’s only possible to book for travel beginning June 18, 2019. Full-service round-trip economy fares appear to start at $1,282, while premium economy is available from $1,805 and business class starts at $4,048 round-trip. Keep in mind that this is for peak summer travel — fares will likely be considerably lower during the spring and fall.
Awards are available to book as well, starting at 13,000 Avios or 22,500 AA miles each way in economy, or 50,000 Avios or 57,500 AAdvantage miles in business class.
Of course, British Airways is tacking on its outrageous “carrier-imposed charge” here, adding more than $1,000 to the co-pay cost of a round-trip business ticket, regardless of how you book.
And that’s in addition to the sky-high taxes and fees — in total, you’re looking at about $525 in cash co-pays for economy, and $1,350+ round-trip for biz. Ouch!
If you’re booking a paid fare, note that you can save up to $200 by signing up for an AARP membership, as detailed here. Hopefully, British Airways will extend its 10% cardholder discount, too, for customers with the British Airways Visa Signature Card. Meanwhile, if you’re hoping to lock in this new flight using miles, or points transferred from Amex Membership Rewards or Chase Ultimate Rewards, be sure not to miss our detailed booking guide.
- 50,000 bonus Avios after you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.
- Earn an additional 25,000 bonus Avios after you spend $10,000 total on purchases within your first year from account opening for a total of 75,000 bonus Avios.
- Earn a further 25,000 bonus Avios after you spend $20,000 total on purchases within your first year from account opening for a total of 100,000 bonus Avios.
- Every calendar year you make $30,000 in purchases on your British Airways Visa card, you’ll earn a Travel Together Ticket good for two years.
- In addition to the bonus Avios, you will also get 3 Avios for every $1 spent on British Airways purchases and 1 Avios for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
- Pay no foreign transaction fees when you travel abroad.
- Chip Technology allows you to use your card for chip based purchases in Europe & beyond, while still giving you the ability to use your card as you do today at home.