MIAMI — On July 1, 1946, British Airways’ predecessor British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC), began twice-weekly commercial services between London (Heathrow North) and New York (LaGuardia) paving the way for decades of scheduled operations between both cities.
The first flight was in a Lockheed L049 Constellation (G-AHEJ • Bristol II • MSN 1975), remembered as a symbol of luxury and comfort, besides being one of the most technologically advanced aircraft at that time. The flight was flown via Shannon and/or Gander, giving passengers a scheduled westbound journey time of 19 hours and 45 minutes.
Since that date, British Airways has always taken pride in sending to the route its most iconic flagships, having the distinction to inaugurate in 1958, the first regular jet-powered transatlantic flight with its DeHavilland Comet 4, thus beating its rival Pan American World Airways Boeing 707 service by just a few weeks.
Through the decades, the Comet 4, the Boeing 707 and later the Vickers VC-10 and Boeing 747 were just some of the aircraft deployed in the route, considered to be the busiest air route between the United States and Europe. However, the most remembered and cherished Speedbird aircraft on the route is the Concorde, which offered regular supersonic services to New York from 1977 to 2003.
Today, British Airways offers up to twelve flights to New York from three London airports: nine flights to Heathrow, two from London City and one from Gatwick, serving both New York’s JFK and Newark Liberty International Airports.