British Airways’ parent IAG will launch a new low-cost, long-haul airline in June, based in Barcelona and named Level.
The new airline has been compared to the Qantas launch of Jetstar, or Lufthansa’s offshoot Eurowings. It is taking bookings already.
Level will aim to head off the transatlantic threat from budget carrier Norwegian, which is reportedly the third largest low-cost carrier in Europe, the second-largest airline in Scandinavia, and the ninth-largest airline in Europe in terms of passenger numbers.
Norwegian is building a transatlantic network from Spain and Britain.
Level, which will initially fly two new A330 aircraft branded in the airline’s own livery, is a sister airline to British Airways. Both are owned by International Airlines Group (IAG), which also owns Ireland’s Aer Lingus and the Spanish carriers Iberia and Vueling. Like Level, Vueling hubs in Barcelona.
Iberia crews, presumably wearing different uniforms, will staff and fly Level.
Level’s website flylevel.com says the airline’s A330s will be fitted with 293 economy and 21 premium economy seats.
IAG chief executive Willie Walsh told The Independent that Level would “complement our existing airline portfolio and further diversify our current customer base”.
Level will fly from Barcelona to Los Angeles and Oakland in California (going head-to-head with Norwegian) as well as to Buenos Aires and Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.
“With mood lighting, personal entertainment throughout including Wi-Fi and a great selection of food options on-board, we’re all about comfortable and hassle free journeys,” Level’s site says.
Written by Peter Needham