BA Strike Is Off, But Service Is Still Disrupted

British Airways on Monday reached an agreement with its cabin crew, fending off strikes planned throughout the end of January and the month of February. Strikes scheduled for February 5, 6 and 7, as well as February 12, 13 and 14 have been called off, although British Airways said it may not have time to reinstate the 1,300 flights canceled for travel on January 30 and 31. "Unfortunately, the decision has come too late to prevent disruption to the travel plans of tens of thousands of our customers [Tuesday] and Wednesday," BA's CEO Willie Walsh said in a statement. "We will endeavor to reinstate as many flights as we can for those days," he encouraged, adding that more details would be released as they became available. Unfortunately, such conditions have put agents in an inadvisable situation. "The important thing is to stay abreast of what's happening," says Bob Watson of the Watson & Watson agency in Scarsdale, NY. "You're really in a terrible bind if you double book. It can be a loose-loose situation." Adding to the inconvenience is lack of catering services onboard some Tuesday flights from Heathrow, due to the late reinstatement of the flight schedule. Any affected customers will be offered vouchers to spend in the airport, the carrier stated. Check flight status at [www.britishairways.com/travel/arrdep/public/en_us] and find out refund and rebooking procedures at www.batraveltrade.com.

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