British Airways has announced it will cut 10,300 short-haul flights until the end of October, with long-haul travel unaffected.
The company said the move would allow it to “protect as many of our holiday flights as possible”.
The news comes after the airline announced it will also be cancelling over 600 flights in July from Heathrow and Gatwick to avoid the recent travel chaos that erupted at the start of the summer season.
Over 76,000 seats will be axed from Heathrow and 29,400 from Gatwick.
Around 105,000 passengers are expected to be impacted in the coming weeks.
A BA spokesperson said the aviation industry was going through the most "challenging" period in its history, the Express reports.
Here we explain why British Airways are cancelling more flights, which flights are due to be cancelled and the flights that are affected today.
What has the airline said about its decision to cancel thousands of flights?
Issuing a statement on the decision, the company said: “The whole aviation industry continues to face into significant challenges and we’re completely focussed on building resilience into our operation to give customers the certainty they deserve.
“The Government recently decided to give the whole industry slot alleviation to minimise potential disruption this summer.”
The statement added: “While taking further action is not where we wanted to be, it’s the right thing to do for our customers and our colleagues.
“While most of our flights are unaffected and the majority of customers will get away as planned, we don’t underestimate the impact this will have and we’re doing everything we can to get their travel plans back on track.”
British Airways said the “new flexibilty” offered by slot alleviation meant it could “further reduce” its schedule and “consolidate some of [its] quieter services.”
The statement said: “We’re in touch to apologise and offer rebooking options for new flights with us or another airline as soon as possible or issue a full refund.”
Why are British Airways cancelling flights?
The news of the airline cancelling more flights over the summer comes after widespread cancellations hit the industry over recent weeks, affecting thousands of passengers.
Airlines who sacked thousands of staff during the coronavirus pandemic are now struggling to recruit replacements, causing long queues at security checks.
There have also been claims that the pay is too low to attract new recruits.
The flights cancelled by Britain’s biggest airline represent 14 percent of those scheduled from Gatwick and seven percent from Heathrow.
BA is also facing strike action as hundreds of Heathrow customer service agents plan to take industrial action in July.
The workers are striking over an ongoing pay dispute regarding a 10% salary cut during the pandemic.
British Airways has offered the staff a one off bonus payment but the employees would like the money reinstated permanently.
A BA spokesperson said: "As the entire aviation industry continues to face the most challenging period in its history, regrettably it has become necessary to make some further reductions.
"We’re in touch with customers to apologise and offer to rebook them or issue a full refund.”
The airline suggested the cancellations would make it "easier to consolidate quieter daily flights to multi-frequency destinations well in advance and to protect more of our holiday flights."
Paul Charles, the chief executive of travel consultancy The PC Agency, warned that there could be more cancelled flights in August.
He said: "It is a sign that the airlines don’t believe people will come into the industry in time for 29 July, the busiest time of the year.
“If the airlines thought they were going to be having enough people, they would not need to make so many cuts."
A Department for Transport spokesman said airlines had to offer schedules they could "realistically" deliver.
Which British Airways flights will be cancelled?
The affected journeys will impact more than 70 destinations, including top holiday spots Malaga and Ibiza.
Trips to Amsterdam, Athens and Faro will also be hit, along with Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca, according to reports.
The airline has requested the cancellation of 650 flights from Heathrow and Gatwick in July.
The cancellations were discovered in a request to airport slot authorities, which allocate space for the landing of planes.
BA said the action was taken “pre-emptively earlier this year” in order to “provide customers with as much notice as possible about any changes to their travel plans”.
British Airways flights cancelled today
Here are the British Airways flights cancelled today (Thursday 14 July).
Gatwick Airport arrivals across all terminals
There are currently no cancelled British Airways arrival flights at Gatwick Airport.
Gatwick Airport departures across all terminals
There are currently no cancelled British Airways departure flights at Gatwick Airport.
London Heathrow airport arrivals
There are currently no cancelled British Airways arrival flights at London Heathrow.
London Heathrow airport departures
There are currently no cancelled British Airways departure flights at London Heathrow.