Restoration of BA flights to Pakistan

After a long gap of eleven years, British Airways once more flies to Pakistan. Crowds greet and wait at Islamabad International Airport for the British Airways 787 as it taxied towards the terminal. There is enjoyment not only about the return of the British carrier but also that British Airways opened an office in the capital of Pakistan Islamabad. On-board was the first flight in a decade was Chief Commercial Officer at British Airways, Andrew Brem. The environment on board state-of-the-art 787 aircraft was marvelous, as was the cordial welcome on the ground. British Airways have a magnificent record of flying to Pakistan operated flights to Islamabad in 1976.
The revival of British Airways flights between the UK and Pakistan after more than ten years will be a principal strength for trade between two friendly and sincere countries. British Airline is the first western airline to fly return to Pakistan. This is an indication of the healthier and developing relationship between the two friendly countries. It is hoped that British Airways will act as an accelerator to bring all the more British companies to one of the world’s huge markets. Presently British Airways have programmed three flights a week between Heathrow and Islamabad, departing on a Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday from London using a Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Three classes of service will be available to passengers for the 7 hour 50 minute flight, comprised of World Traveller (BA long-haul economy option) World Traveller Plus (BA’s upgraded economy) and Club World (business class).A halal meal will be served in all classes of service. Special attention will be paid to make sure that there is no pork or alcohol used in the preparation of sauces. Customers can also pre-order special meals including vegetarian and vegan options. The only competition that British Airways will face when it comes to direct Islamabad – London flights is from Pakistan International Airlines. So far PIA had a nearly complete control flying to and from the UK to Pakistan. This may change as BA penetrates the market with an excellent product. The new 787 Dreamliner is equipped with lie-flat seats in business class and a state-of-the-art inflight entertainment system.
Following the opening of Islamabad’s new International Airport, British Airways will be the first western airline to return to Pakistan after security concerns at the airport were not there. It is a good sign that the improved security conditions in Pakistan those British Airways has resumed its flights to Pakistan after a pause of 11 long years. British Airways resumed operations to Pakistan on June 3. It had suspended operations to Pakistan in September 2008 as a consequence of a splendid hotel bombing in Islamabad. British Airways’ Boeing 787 Dreamliner took off from Heathrow airport in London, with 240 passengers on board, and touched down at Islamabad International Airport at 9.15am on June 3. The same aircraft left Islamabad for Heathrow at 11am carrying passengers. The airlines will fly three times a week between London and Islamabad. Minister for Civil Aviation Ghulam Sarwar Khan, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razaq Dawood, Special Assistant to the PM on Overseas Pakistanis Zulfi Bukhari, senior officers of the Aviation Division, and British High Commissioner Thomas Drew welcomed the passengers and the crew at the airport. The British envoy described the resumption of BA flight operation as great. He said they were happy about the better security situation in Pakistan. Stringent security arrangements were in place at the airport at the time of the flight’s arrival. Zulfi Bukhari stated that the return of the British Airways was the first stage. The government would encourage other airlines to accelerate international network in Pakistan. Taking consideration to the fact that air travel has increased diversified in the universe, Pakistan should not be left alone to get its huge share in the ever-increasing international air traffic. It should encourage other airlines to fly to Pakistan and should also increase the number of destinations for Pakistan International Airlines. This is the correct time for PIA to bring its house in order. The launch of the three times thrice-a-week service from London’s Heathrow Airport to Islamabad International Airport was hailed by British and Pakistani functionaries. They all stated it would encourage tourism, trade and business. Some of the passengers who travelled in the flight mentioned it was a comfortable journey and would choose the airline when travelling to Islamabad. The resumption of the service will be compelling for Pakistani expatriates. UK is stated to be residence of in excess of a million people of Pakistan origin, making it the largest Pakistani community in Europe. Federal Aviation Minister Ghulam Sarwar Khan commended the push and asserted that other foreign airlines were also planning to resume their flight operations in Pakistan after seeing a friendly business atmosphere and better enhanced security condition within the country. In a series of tweets, Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Information and Broadcasting Firdous Ashiq Awan wrote that resumption of British Airways’ flights to Pakistan depict world’s trust in ‘Naya’ Pakistan and its government. Prime Minister Imran Khan also commended British Airways resumption of flights to Pakistan and said it would help tourism sector in the country and would also send out optimistic signs for trade and investment.

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