British Airways and Iberia owners IAG (International Airlines Group) are planning on launching flights from Barcelona to US detinations in June next year. This comes as a response to the increasing competition from low-cost carriers on transatlantic routes.
Norwegian Air Shuttle is planning on introducing flights to the US from Barcelona in 2017, initially serving Newark, Los Angeles, Fort Lauderdale and Oakland. Barcelona is currently a base for Norwegian as well as IAG carrier Vueling, which will be used to feed passengers onto the flights.
The group has not decided whether it will use resources from one of the current airlines or set up a new one. “Barcelona has become a significant airport hub and we believe that there is a demand for these flights from El Prat,” IAG said in an emailed statement.
The possible destinations are Santiago de Chile, Havana, Tokyo, Los Angeles, Buenos Aires and San Francisco.
CAPA Centre for Aviation said that this looks like a response to Norwegians new flights. “Plans by the low-cost carrier Norwegian to launch long-haul routes from Barcelona in 2017 may have had a catalytic effect on IAG’s thinking,” they said.