British Airways, G-BYGA, Boeing 747-436. Photo: Anna Zvereva.

MIAMI – Today, British Airways (BA) operated its ‘Golf Alpha’ aircraft for the last time. The Boeing 747-436 registered as G-BYGA flew for almost 22 years.

‘Golf Alpha’ bid farewell to the skies wearing the Union Flag/Chatham Dockyard livery in a flight from Cardiff (CWL) to Kemble (GBA). ‘Golf Bravo’ remains now retired at GBA. The retirement becomes the fifth of the 31 remaining Boeing 747 BA announced it would retire.

British Airways, G-BYGA, Boeing 747-436 at London Heathrow Airport. Photo: Andrew Thomas.

G-BYGA Stats


Wearing the Chelsea Rose’ World Images livery, the Boeing 747 entered in service on December 14, 1998. Since then, it operated popular routes between London (LHR) and Chicago, Dubai, New York, and Los Angeles.

As the pandemic hit, the last commercial flight of the aircraft was from New York (JFK) to London Heathrow (LHR) on March 21. By that time, the G-BYGA had recorded 89,593 flight hours in 10,981 frequencies and around 40 million miles.

Having been assembled with four Rolls-Royce RB211-524 engines, ‘Golf Alpha’ reached 565mph as top speed and 180mph as take-off speed.

British Airways B747-436 G-BYGA with Chelsea Rose livery. Photo: Bob Adams.

British Airways Passenger Service


Fitting for BA’s customer flying experience, the seating configuration of the Boeing 747 offered four travel classes. From the 275 total seat capacity, the World Traveller service offered 145 of them, closely followed by the Club 86-seat configuration.

On their part, the enhanced World Traveller Plus and First/Business classes gathered 30 and 14 seats, respectively.


British Airways, G-BYGA, Boeing 747-436. Photo: Anna Zvereva.