British Airways Connecting Flights


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This is a British Airways connecting flights guide.

It covers everything from how to book connecting flights with British Airways to baggage rules and air passengers rights. British Airways, sometimes referred to as BA or British, is the flag carrier of the United Kingdom. The airline operates flights to all continents, except for Antarctica. British Airways is a full-service traditional airline.


Did you miss a connecting flight? File a compensation claim online.


British Airways airplane
British Airways airplane

1

Is It Protected?

Yes, it’s a protected connection.

Traditional airlines sell airline-protected connecting flights. It’s more convenient and more safe than self-transfer flights. You don’t need a visa for connecting flights like this.

Unless you book flights separately.

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2

Baggage Rules

Airline takes care of your baggage.

Mostly, you will check in baggage only once — you won’t have to recheck baggage for every flight. This is how it works with traditional airlines and airline-protected connecting flights.

Baggage allowance depends on the ticket, destination and occasionally some other factors. 


3

Travel Insurance

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1. British Airways Connecting Flights

British Airways is a full-service traditional airline.

What’s the best part about it? The airline, just like other full-service traditional airlines, offers airline-protected connecting flights. Not self transfers but protected connections.

Airline-protected connecting flights are:

  • More safe. Your airline takes care of flight problems.
  • More convenient. Baggage transfer is automatic.
  • Easier to book. You book several flights as a single journey.

Last but not least, you get all boarding passes for connecting flights at once, when checking in for the flight. It may not be possible when checking in online, but will work at the airport, at the check in desk.

Yes, British Airways sells airline-protected connecting flights.

1.1 Connecting Flights, One Airline

Connecting flights with British Airways aren’t all the same.

You see, sometimes you will be flying with British Airways, but another time your British Airways flight may also be operated by another airline. This happens because airlines share flights. These kind of agreements are called codeshare agreements.

You may have all flights with BA, and you may have one flight with BA and second with another airline. Both options are possible. Both are normal.

1.2 British Airways Codeshare Partners

Sometimes airlines share their flights.

You booked a flight from British Airways, but it’s operated by another airline. As already mentioned, it’s completely normal. Connecting flights with different airlines is a norm in aviation. It’s nothing unusual. These flights are so-called codeshare flights, and airlines collaborating — codeshare partners.

What you should know is that:

  • If you miss a connecting flight, it’s British Airways’s responsibility. You should contact them, British Airways, not the airline operating your flight (if that’s a different airline). Because in this case British Airways are the marketing airline — they are responsible for finding solutions.
  • If your flight is heavily delayed, cancelled or overbooked, compensation is paid by airline operating this particular flight. If it’s operated by some other airline, not British Airways, then they are called operating airline — they have to pay compensation when it’s due.

See a list of British Airways codeshare partners here.

Doha International Airport
Doha International Airport

2. What If British Airways Cancels a Flight?

Why is British Airways cancelling flights?

This could happen due to a number of reasons.

Bad weather. Employee strikes. Technical problems with airplane engine or air conditioner. Missing or delayed aircraft. Not enough crew in times of high demand. The important thing is that whenever it happens due to airline’s fault, not something unavoidable, you may be entitled to cancellation compensation. More on this further below.

2.1 One of Your Flights Is Cancelled

British Airways is a British airline (European airline).

According to the EU Regulation 261/2004, they must:

  • Offer you a choice between a new flight and full refund.
  • Offer you assistance at the airport (you have a right to care).

The rules are the same on all their commercial flights.

It applies to all all cancelled British Airways flights.

If you miss a connecting flight as a result of this, it’s British Airways’s responsibility. You should contact them, British Airways, not the airline operating your flight (if that’s a different airline, which might be true). Because, in this case, if there are several airlines, British Airways are the marketing airline — they are responsible for finding solutions. You may opt for a refund instead of a new flight.

You may have a right to compensation (more on this below).


Did you miss a connecting flight? File a compensation claim online.


2.2 All Your Flights Are Cancelled

Overall, for you as a passenger, the options are the same.

According to the EU Regulation 261/2004, British Airways must:

  • Offer you a choice between a new flight and full refund.
  • Offer you assistance at the airport if it’s a last-minute cancellation and you are already at the airport (you have a right to care).

This applies to all their commercial flights.

Refund must be paid within seven days.

You may have a right to EU flight cancellation compensation.

2.3 British Airways Refund for Cancellation

Yes, you have a right to ask for a refund.

You don’t have to accept coupons from British Airways.

You don’t have to accept alternative flights.

If you don’t wish to fly anymore, ask for a full refund. According to the Regulation UK261, all British Airways refunds for cancelled flights must be processed within seven days from the moment of flight cancellation.

Hong Kong airport layover
Hong Kong airport

3. British Airways Missed Connecting Flight

Your flight was late. Or cancelled. And you missed a connection.

As long as it wasn’t your fault, the airline should help you.

3.1 What Happens If You Miss British Airways Connection?

If it’s your fault that it happened — it’s your responsibility.

If it’s not your fault, then your airline has to take care of that. If you booked a flight from British Airways, it doesn’t even matter if the flight is operated by British Airways or not, you should contact British Airways. They must offer you a solution. Most likely it’s gonna be a new flight.

According to the EU Regulation 261/2004, they must:

  • Take you to your final destination as soon as possible.
  • Offer you assistance at the airport (you have a right to care).

This is how it works with BA connecting flights.

Read more: Missed Connecting Flight Due to Delay 

3.2 Right to Compensation from British Airways

Sometimes you have a right to compensation.

If you’re 2, 3, 4 or more hours late, you may be entitled to EU, EEA or UK flight delay compensation. These rules apply to all British Airways delayed flights to and from EU, EEA or UK, which is… basically all their flights, because all of them either depart from or arrive in EU, EEA or UK airports. So, don’t forget to file a claim for British Airways compensation for delayed flights!

Flight cancelled less than 2 weeks before the trip?

You might be entitled to flight cancellation compensation. Check with the airline and / or flight compensation company to see if your flight falls under the flight compensation regulation. And claim British Airways compensation for cancelled flights!

GET FLIGHT COMPENSATION

File a Claim Online

3.3 Right to Care from British Airways

On all British Airways flights you have a right to care.

According to the EU Regulation 261/2004 airline should provide:

  • Free food and drinks in a reasonable relation to the waiting time.
  • Free hotel accommodation if a stay of one or more nights is necessary;
  • Free airport transfer to hotel and back.
  • Plus, two telephone calls, telex or fax messages, or e-mails. 

It applies to all domestic and international flights with British Airways, all delayed British Airways flights. Again, it’s because British Airways is a European airline. With non-European airlines it applies only to flights departing from European airports.

In some cases with British Airways you are protected by the Regulation UK261. What you should know is that it’s basically the same law as the EU Regulation 261/2004. That’s why on this website, for simplicity, we often refer to EU, EEA and UK simply as Europe. 


When it comes to air passenger rights, unless otherwise stated, we talk about air passenger rights in the EU, EEA and UK. When we say Europe or European, we mean EU, EEA or UK. This is done for the simplicity, since the according laws in these countries are about the same.


Istanbul Airport
Istanbul Airport

4. How to Book Connecting Flights with British Airways?

You can do it directly from British Airways or via a third-party.

These are the best options that you have. Which option to choose, that’s up to you. When the price difference is less than 10% or 20 euro or dollars, we recommend to book directly from an airline. Alternatively, you can also book a flight from a travel agent, if you don’t want to bother with searching for a flight yourself.


How to Book?

Airline website (directly).

This is the easiest way to book a connecting flight. It’s also the safest way to book a connection. You make a single booking, have a single reservation code and the booking includes several flights. Sometimes they are all with one airline, other times – two or more. Anyway, in this case, you can be 100% sure that you have a proper connecting flight.

Other Option

Flight booking websites.

Few examples: skyscanner.net, expedia.com, momondo.com.

Pay attention to the details. Because some of these sites are only search engines, and sellers are other websites. Apart from that, they often sell both airline-protected connecting flights and self-transfer flights. If it’s a self-transfer, know that it comes with its own risks, and there are things you should take into account. Self-transfer is not the same thing as airline-protected transfer. 

For extra protection, buy also a travel insurance covering flight disruptions, or book with sites like kiwi.com, who offer extra protection.

With kiwi.com you are more protected than normally.


Read more: How to Book Connecting Flights?

Two backpacks

5. British Airways Connecting Flights: Baggage

Since British Airways is a traditional airline, everything’s very easy.

Baggage rules on connecting flights with British Airways are simple.

In short, British Airways takes care of your baggage. Go to the check in desk. Check in your bag. And that’s all from you for now, wonderful isn’t it? That’s how baggage transfer works on connecting flights with full-service traditional airlines. You check in your baggage once and collect it only on arrival at your destination. Unless you’re traveling through some country that require everyone to recheck their baggage (like in the US).

If you have any doubts, just contact the BA staff.

5.1 Baggage Transfer: Different Airlines

What happens if there are several airlines?

What if one of your flights is operated by different airline, not British Airways? As we already talked, you may experience this, because British Airways does share some of its flights with its codeshare partners. In this situation the rules are the same — your baggage is being taken care of by an airline. 

Read more:

5.2 British Airways Free Baggage Allowance

Baggage allowance varies — it’s not the same on all flights.

The allowance varies depending on your class of travel, and destination. You can see it on your booking confirmation or by logging into your British Airways account. You can also see it when you’re making a booking. Not all tickets come with free baggage allowance.

5.3 Economy Light

This is the cheapest option for long-haul flights.

Economy Light comes without free baggage allowance.

We see this all across the industry. Full-service traditional airlines are offering also tickets without free checked baggage allowance. The wording is also often the same — Economy Light. So, if you see this, most likely it’s without checked baggage (carry on baggage only).

British Airways also has it. They call it Basic fare.

Most of cheapest British Airways flights tickets are Basic.

Basic fare comes without checked baggage.

A market in Fez Morocco
A market in Fez Morocco

6. Connecting Flight Examples

Here are two connecting flight examples with British Airways.

6.1 Protected Connecting Flights with British Airways (Most Common)

For this example I’ll be using the website of British Airways.

For example, I want to fly from Paris to Marrakech, Morocco.

I look for flights on October 1, and these are my options:

Paris – Marrakech connecting flight with British Airways

On their website British Airways sells only protected connecting flights with layovers. However, don’t forget that not all flights you will see there are also operated by British Airways. Some flights may be operated by British Airways codeshare partners. You can see the operating airline, when you click on “Flight Details” link. In this case, all flights are with British Airways. And all of them are almost identical.

The only variables — price, total flight duration, departure time.

6.2 Self-Transfer Flights with British Airways

Now, let’s assume, you want something slightly different.

You want to fly from Paris to Marrakech. Spend a day in Marrakech. And then fly from Marrakech to Agadir, a popular coastal city in the south of Morocco. All you want to do in Marrakech is to have a quick city tour, and then — have a sunny holiday in Agadir.

  1. You book a connecting flight to Marrakech. You choose one of the options from the example above. All of them arrive at the same time.
  2. And then you go to kiwi.com, or some other flight booking website, and book a flight from Marrakech to Agadir. Leaving yourself, let’s say, 20 hours in Marrakech. You may also book a flight directly from an airline. For example, Royal Air Maroc offers flights from Marrakech to Agadir via Casablanca.

Until Marrakech you have an airline-protected connecting flight. If your first flight is heavily delayed or cancelled, if necessary, British Airways will give you another flight for free. It’s their responsibility to take care of you. However, it’s not connected with the Marrakech – Agadir flight. So, if you arrive to Marrakech one day late, and you can’t make it for the next flight, it’s your responsibility (this last flight, from Marrakech to Agadir).

What is your experience with British Airways? Have ever missed connecting flight with British Airways? How did the airline solve this? Did you receive compensation from British Airways?

Featured photo by Pixabay from Pexels


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