M&S foods to replace free meals on short haul British Airways economy

M&S foods to replace free meals on short haul British Airways economy

British Airways is scrapping free meals on short haul flights in economy class, instead offering a selection of Marks & Spencer salads and sandwiches.

Prices will include £1 for hand cooked crisps, £3 for a cheddar cheese ploughman's sandwich and £4.95 for a spiced chicken with quinoa and rice salad.

BA claimed the move is in response to customer feedback.

Passengers are currently given a light snack, such as a bacon roll, and a soft drink.

BA's chairman and chief executive, Alex Cruz, said: "We know our customers expect a great experience with British Airways.

"They've told us we are experts in flying and service, but when it comes to catering on short haul flights, they want to choose from a wider range of premium products.

"Like British Airways, Marks & Spencer is a well-known, premium British brand that is respected and trusted, so it's an ideal partnership, providing our customers with a choice of products they recognise and value."

Low cost airlines such as easyJet and Ryanair already offer small snacks for sale on their flights, but Mr Cruz claimed BA's offering "sets a new standard in short haul catering".

The M&S food selection will be updated four times a year.

It will replace free snacks on short haul and domestic flights from Heathrow and Gatwick from January 11 2017 and from London City and Stansted by next summer.

Business class customers will continue to be offered a full, complimentary menu.

Aviation expert Julian Bray said BA has been engaged in a battle to "catch up" with its competitors who have made inroads into its traditional market.

He said: "Passenger loyalty is a thing of the past with business travellers now seeking the most cost efficient deal and essentially the most attractive headline price.

"Many passengers are already picking up a gourmet premium price in-flight meal pack from the airport terminal prior to their flight, so this would seem to be a logical development."

Andy Adcock, director of food at M&S, said: "We're proud to be supplying a great British brand with a reputation for quality and customer service that mirrors our own.

"For 35 years we've had a market leading Food on the Move offer and we'll supply British Airways with customer favourites and healthy choices made with outstanding ingredients, all with the provenance you'd expect from M&S."

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