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BA starts Ibiza flights from Stansted

One way from €63

British Airways is going head to head with its low cost competitor Ryanair by offering flights from London Stansted for the first time. The flights, which start at €63 one way will start from 28 May this year with Ibiza, Malaga, Palma and Faro in Portugal amongst the destinations on offer from this airport.

The flights are operated by BA Cityflyer and will run only on Saturdays for now, though this marks the establishment of a presence at what is now London's third largest airport, which is itself expanding steadily.

The low prices combined with BA's legendary service and reputation for offering free refreshments might just tempt tourists to try them out and will possibly give all budget airlines a run for their money if successful.

Ryanair itself recently invested over €90 million in a beefed up presence at Ibiza Airport with the potential to handle an additional 350,000 new customers per year. BA also increased the number of flights during winter by 50% to cater for demand for Ibiza as an all-year-round destination.

Willie Walsh boss of BA's owner IAG admitted he had a “huge admiration” for rival Ryanair boss Michael O'Leary, but that he wouldn't “necessarily do things the way he does”.

BA's move sees a reverse of the budget airlines' invasion of London's main airports and puts the company squarely into the home of cheap flights where it must hope to steal market share back from the low cost crew.

With higher-priced summer flights to Ibiza, the increased availability of flights could go some way to making them affordable. The trick though always is to book well ahead.

WORDS: Julian Heathcote

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