British Airways made the announcement to staff on Monday via email with the airline’s Gatwick managing director Adam Carson telling workers they can “expect to hear more soon” about potential job losses. Mr Carson said: “Due to the considerable restrictions and challenging market environment, like many other airlines, we will temporarily suspend our flying schedule at Gatwick. “I know you will have concerns and questions about what this means for you.
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“I appreciate there is a desire for more detail about jobs and you should expect to hear more soon.”
A British Airways spokesperson said in a statement: “Due to the considerable restrictions and challenging market environment, like many other airlines, we will temporarily suspend our flying schedule at Gatwick.
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“We are contacting affected customers to discuss their options.”
However, the airline will still be carrying out essential functions such as maintenance, towing and cleaning to support the airfield and be ready for an efficient start up.
It comes after easyJet decided to ground its fleet yesterday in a move to save the airline from financial strain.
Ryanair also decided to cut down 80 percent of their flights to help halt the spread of coronavirus.
The move has also seen BA move all of its London flights to Heathrow Airport Terminal 5.
The airline announced on Twitter that they would be pulling out of Terminal 3 of the airport over the weekend.
They posted on Twitter: “We are temporarily moving all of our flights at Heathrow Terminal 3 to Terminal 5 from Sunday.
“If your flight is affected, we will be in contact by email to make sure you are kept up to date.”
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However, customers were not happy with BA’s announcement, accusing them of allegedly not responding to messages.
One customer replied: “How about replying to your customers phone calls, twits and emails? Will that happen anytime soon?”
Another said: “It’s nice to see replying to everyone here but you haven’t bothered to reply to the two messages I sent asking for help.
“Pretty sure all I need is a link to submit details and you can’t even be bothered to do that.”
Others questioned how the airline was still saying flights were running despite travel restrictions.
One user said: “I can’t even work out why flights are even allowed in or out of the country!
“What’s the point in a lockdown when you keep letting fresh people in the country and potentially contaminated people leave the country?”
BA responded saying, “We’re still operating rescue and repatriation flights to help people return home. Everyone entering a new country has to follow FCO and WHO guidelines on self isolation and quarantine.”
The remaining terminal 3 routes at Heathrow will now take off from terminal 5 where there is more room due to reductions to the schedule.
BA flights from Gatwick were already being pared back.
Jersey Airport also advised that “due to the current situation BA Jersey/Gatwick services will be suspended as from Tuesday 31 March until end of April.”
Virgin Atlantic have also moved all their London flights to Heathrow.
Gatwick Airport will close its North Terminal from tomorrow and then move its existing flights to the South Terminal.
Last week, London City airport decided to close until the end of April earliest after BA decided to suspend its services there.
Gatwick Airport has been contacted for comment.
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