Transatlantic airfares war heats up with BA’s new budget airline

Transatlantic airfares war heats up with BA’s new sister budget airline

LONDON — British Airways has officially thrown its hat into the ring by unveiling plans for a sister budget airline, set to launch in June.

The new long-haul budget airline by parent company IAG is called ‘Level’ and will be based in Barcelona, which is also the hub for Vueling, IAG’s Spanish no-frills airline. Level will debut with two new Airbus A330 aircraft featuring 293 economy and 21 premium economy seats, and will fly from Barcelona to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Buenos Aires and Punta Cana. Sister carrier Iberia will staff the pilots and cabin crew.

With the launch of Level, IAG will boast five main airline brands, including Aer Lingus, British Airways, Iberia and Vueling.

According to The Telegraph, IAG chief executive Willie Walsh said that other European destinations are in the works. Fares will start from €99 for a one-way ticket, with checked luggage, meals and in-flight Internet access among the perks in premium economy. Those in economy will be able to choose what perks they want to pay for.

The new airline aims to take business away from competing low-cost airline Norwegian, which also offers flights from Barcelona to U.S. cities like Los Angeles and Oakland, both of which will also be serviced by Level. In June, Norwegian will surge ahead with expanded flights from Edinburgh and Belfast to secondary airports in the northeast U.S.

There’s no word yet if Canadian destinations could be on the horizon.

Flights on are currently on sale.

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