British Airways has admitted disruption to flights caused by a “technical issue” that has led to thousands of passengers facing delays.
The airline said overnight that a small number of planes were affected by the glitch – the latest in a series of PR headaches for the carrier caused by apparent computer system woes and, latterly, damaging strikes by pilots.
It later confirmed: “Our teams are working hard to resolve a technical issue which is affecting some of our flights, and we have rebooked customers onto alternative flights and offered hotel accommodation where they have been unable to continue their journeys last night.
“We are very sorry for the disruption to their travel plans.
“We are advising customers to check ba.com for the latest flight information and to ensure that contact details are up to date on their booking, so that we can provide the latest information.”
Our teams are working hard to resolve a technical issue which is affecting some of our flights. I’m sorry for the inconvenience the delays have caused you, Nicole. Kimbers
— British Airways (@British_Airways) November 21, 2019
Tweets to BA overnight from customers suggested flights to Heathrow and Gatwick from the US, Asia and Africa were caught up in the chaos.
The airline was yet to provide details of how widespread the disruption was or what was behind the delays.
A number of customers suggested, via social media, that BA was having problems logging flight plans and their flights had been pushed back by up to a day.
BA said it was assisting customers whose flights had been cancelled by helping to make alternative arrangements.
But one customer, Robert Cottis-Wells, told Sky News via his Twitter account: “My flight back from Orlando tonight was cancelled 2 hours ago BA2036 ten minutes after their helpline closed.
“Sat here at 2:20am not knowing anything. No one willing to help until 7:30GMT when the line reopens.”
The glitch follows a torrid summer for the airline which saw an IT glitch in August lead to hundreds of flights being either delayed or cancelled.
In September, the airline was forced to cancel almost all its flights over two days as pilots walked out in a dispute over pay.
The airline’s parent firm, IAG, later issued a profit warning on the back of the costly strike action.
Its shares, down 11% in the year to date, were trading almost 1% lower on the FTSE 100 on Thursday morning.