RadarBox: British Airways Nearing Pre-COVID Numbers

Photo Credit: Emil Bree/AviationSource

LONDON – According to data from RadarBox.com, British Airways is nearing pre-COVID numbers when it comes to its flight statistics despite a cut to Winter services.

The airline has been reinstating services over the Summer, but with the Winter season coming, could we see these numbers decrease again?

Without further ado, let’s get into the numbers…

The Numbers…

Data provided by RadarBox.com

For September 17-24, the airline recorded 723 movements based on a seven-day rolling average, which is 49.07% more compared to the same period last year.

This means that British Airways is just 66 movements short of meeting pre-COVID levels of 789 movements.

Below is a list of how the airline has fared over the last four weeks:

DatePre-COVID Period (2019)2022 Figures
August 20-27855 movements737 movements
August 27-September 3858 movements739 movements
September 3-10649 movements737 movements
September 10-17881 movements738 movements

10,000 Flights to be Cancelled in W22…

Back in August, the airline announced that it would cancel over 10,000 flights, despite 120,000 being planned to still go ahead, according to Cirium.

The 120,637 flights that will take place in Winter 2022 equates to an output of around 23.2 million seats. The Winter season begins on October 30th and runs through to March 25th next year.

Of this number, around 94,166 of these flights will be short-haul services that will take place within the UK and Europe, which is a substantial percentage.

This means that around 26,471 flights will be long-haul services either across the pond or further afield into Asia and beyond.

47,400 of the flights will depart from London Heathrow, with 6,550 from London City and 5,501 from London Gatwick.

Within this as well, Heathrow to Geneva is scheduled to be British Airways’ largest route, followed by other routes such as:

  • Heathrow-Amsterdam
  • Heathrow-Barcelona
  • Heathrow-Edinburgh
  • Heathrow-Berlin

The 10,000 flights that are due to be canceled means that approximately 1 million seats will be wiped off the capacity books.

Alterations Needed Ahead of the Winter Season…

The airline has been making some alterations throughout the Summer season to ensure that there is little to no disruption on its network this coming Winter.

For example, the airline agreed on pay scales with its workers and the unions.

When check-in staff threatened the airline with industrial action earlier this year, British Airways and their workers’ representative Union met to discuss a deal that could be put forward to staff.

The morale-boosting deal that was accepted by five hundred Heathrow-based check-in staff is made up of three parts. They will receive a non-consolidated five percent lump sum in August’s pay, a five percent consolidated rise on their wages starting from September 2022, and then an additional consolidated three percent on top starting in December 2022.


It remains clear that British Airways has done well to near pre-COVID levels for movements, and even beat it once in the last four weeks.

However, there is no consistency in recovery just yet, with the airline needing to do more to achieve those numbers. However, with 10,000 flights slashed from the W22 schedule, it will be interesting to see how they achieve this.

Either way, it is definitely the case of wait and see what happens.

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