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More Asian destinations for British Airways


British Airways will be flying to Kuala Lumpur

British Airways will be flying a Boeing 787 to Kuala Lumpur.


British Airways is beefing up its Asian timetable with direct flights to Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur planned later this year. 


The services will restart in October and November respectively with the Malaysian capital receiving a daily flight from London Heathrow while Bangkok will welcome three flights a week from London Gatwick.


British Airways is also returning to Abu Dhabi next month, Agadir in Morocco from the end of this month and Izmir in Turkey in May.


Tech upgrades

The British flag carrier has also announced a new website and mobile app as well as free onboard messaging. It will also be unveiling a first class suite as part of a GBP7 billion investment in the airline.


At the launch of the investment programme in London this week, British Airways chairman Sean Doyle said the airline will be using the money over the next two years “to revolutionise the business”.


“We’re going to take delivery of new aircraft, introduce new cabins, elevate our customer care, focus on operational performance and address our environmental impact by reducing our emissions and creating a culture of sustainability,” he said.


Overhauling its digital user experience, the airline will be launching a free of charge onboard WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger later this spring. The service will launch on April 3 to British Airways Executive Club Members, regardless of cabin, and will be available on all Wifi-enabled aircraft within two weeks of the rollout date. 


British Airways will also be introducing a new ba.com browser which will allow customers to make changes to their journey online rather than having to go through a British Airways call centre. The new system is currently undergoing testing and is expected to roll out at the end of the year. 


Japan to slash arrival times

British Airways is not the only airline business to be upgrading its tech. In what will be music to travellers’ ears, the Japanese government hopes to cut arrival processing times at its international airports to as little as one minute.


Currently passengers must present passports twice, at both immigration and customs, which can result in lengthy waiting times. Under the new system, passengers, both domestic and international, will need to enter their passport number onto the government’s Visit Japan website to receive a QR code. This code can then be used at the new electronic terminals, which will process both immigration and customs information. 


After a trial run at Haneda airport ends in late March, the programme will be expanded to more airports across Japan, including Kansai international airport in Osaka in time for the city’s Expo 2025 which opens in April 2025.


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