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    • BRITISH AIRWAYS INVESTS IN BELFAST BUSINESS LOUNGE

      Tuesday 18 Feb 2014

      British Airways has unveiled its new £300,000 lounge at George Best Belfast City Airport.
       
      Willie Walsh, chief executive of British Airways’ parent company, International Airlines Group, officially opened the 285sq metre development, telling VIP guests including Arlene Foster, Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Investment, that the new lounge demonstrated British Airways’ commitment to its customers from Northern Ireland.

      The refurbishment, which forms part of the airline’s £5 billion investment programme to make travelling more comfortable in the air and on the ground, will ensure that local customers will receive a top class and unparalleled travelling experience even before they have taken off.

      Mr Walsh said: “British Airways’ new lounge represents a significant investment and shows the importance of the Belfast operation within our global network. We want to continue to lead the way in customer service excellence and our lounges play a critical role in delivering a premium experience to our customers.

      “The Belfast City to London Heathrow route remains a vital artery for the flow of business and commerce and is essential to sustain and grow the local economy.

      “We recently announced that all our Belfast flights will be moving to our flagship Heathrow home, Terminal 5, at the end of October. Customers connecting to British Airways’ extensive worldwide network from Heathrow will now benefit from being able to connect to more long-haul destinations without having to transfer between terminals – cutting minimum connection times by 30 minutes.”

      The British Airways Belfast lounge offers panoramic views of the airfield, and offers an exclusive experience for customers. Located airside and adjacent to Door A, the lounge offers direct boarding on to the aircraft.

      Features of the British Airways lounge include:

      • 87 comfortable seats
      • Work zone
      • Power outlets throughout the lounge
      • Complimentary Wi-fi throughout the lounge
      • New ‘air’ print technology enabling customers to print from their mobile devices
      • Televisions and a choice of newspapers and magazines
      • Full complimentary bar
      • Extensive choice of food, with a menu that changes throughout the day

      Enterprise, Trade and Investment Minister Arlene Foster, said: “The return of British Airways to Northern Ireland has been a great success, both for the airline and for Northern Ireland. The British Airways London Heathrow service not only provides essential access to London, it also provides Northern Ireland with access to key business and tourism markets around the world.

      “British Airways is to be commended for investing in this new business lounge at Belfast City Airport, an investment which sends a clear and positive message about BA’s commitment to Northern Ireland.”

      Offering his congratulations to British Airways on the opening of the new Executive lounge, Brian Ambrose, chief executive of George Best Belfast City Airport, said: “At Belfast City Airport, we remain focused on enhancing the passenger experience and making the journey through the airport as easy and enjoyable as possible.

      “I am delighted that this focus is shared by British Airways, whose passengers will now have the option of using the facilities in the new lounge before boarding their flight.

      “We are the only airport in Northern Ireland to provide air connectivity with London Heathrow, and British Airways alone operates up to six flights daily. I look forward to working with the airline as we continue to provide the highest quality of service to all passengers.”