Aussies might not make it home for Christmas

Hotel News - 17/12/2009

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According to the latest information from Qantas, the 12-day British Airways strike may force them to cancel flights from the United Kingdom to Brisbane over the Christmas holidays.

It has already been estimated that this long strike over one of the busiest periods of the year is going to seriously disrupt plans to travel during this time, affecting more than a million would-be passengers all around the world. Even though British Airways does not run a direct service to Brisbane, passengers trying to complete this journey may still be affected as Qantas has a codesharing agreement with British Airways.

This means that passengers who have booked on one of 22 flights from London to Brisbane may have their travel plans disrupted, with Australians facing uncertainty over whether they will be able to celebrate with their families this year.

David Epstein is the Group Executive of Government and Corporate Affairs for Qantas. In a recent interview he said that every effort was being made to keep the impact for Qantas passengers to a minimum.

Epstein also went on to say that: "All Qantas services between Australia and the UK will operate as scheduled over the Christmas and New Year period. The action does, however, have the potential to disrupt the travel plans of Qantas customers booked on BA services. We have been working with BA overnight and today, and have determined we have sufficient capacity across the 12 days to accommodate Qantas ticketed passengers booked on BA codeshare flights between Australia and the UK on existing Qantas services. This will provide certainty for Qantas customers travelling to and from the UK."

While UK passengers may feel disappointed at having their plans for a Christmas holiday on the beach thrown into doubt, the blow may be far worse for anyone from Brisbane as the British Airways strike may separate them from their loved ones this Christmas.

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