British Airways is preparing to crack down on savvy travellers who use the dubious and possibly illegal practice of hidden-city ticketing to save money. The practice is also promoted on some websites.
BA is currently duelling with Gulf carriers on some routes and dropping prices strategically. In some cases, paradoxically, fares through a city can be cheaper than fares directly to the same city.
This lets some unscrupulous travellers rort the system by buying an airfare with a layover or stopover, and leaving the airport at the stopover city without completing the itinerary. Airlines ban the practice but it is hard to stop.
Business travel site Head for Points reports it has received reliable information from two sources that BA is about to take a harder line.
Travellers not taking the final leg of a trip are likely to find BA has cancelled any remaining parts of the trip. The airline is also considering billing travellers for the difference in price, according to Head for Points.
Digital, social media and tech site Mashable says BA confirmed that fares were sold “based on the original sequence of flights, and so the tickets need to be used in that order. If tickets are not used in the sequence they were originally purchased in, the tickets for the rest of the journey will be invalid.”
Heavy recent discounts on BA flights from Germany to Hong Kong have caught the eye of a few travellers who really want only to fly to London.
Written by Peter Needham