Cash-strapped British Airways to sell memorabilia, surplus stock

Saleha Riaz
·3-min read
Items will be available to purchase from November 23. Photo: British Airways
Items will be available to purchase from November 23. Photo: British Airways

British Airways said today it is selling off surplus stock, including inflight dining items, slippers and blankets, in a first for the company, which has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic.

“British Airways has decided to unlock the doors to its warehouse this Christmas to give customers and aviation fans the unique opportunity to get their hands on items from British Airways aircraft which have circled the globe hundreds of times,” it said in a statement.

Photo: British Airways
Photo: British Airways

For a limited time, items such as aircraft trolleys and canisters taken from the Boeing 747, which it has now fully retired, are also up for grabs. One such plane is being turned into an educational facility and cinema in Gloucestershire.

Items will be available to purchase from from 23 November.

British Airways is encouraging customers to share photographs of themselves using the items, tagging @British_Airways and using the hashtag #BAathome.

READ MORE: British Airways and EasyJet 'ignore EU guidance' on voucher refunds

The airline also pointed out that since the start of the pandemic, it has donated thousands of items including washbags, socks, snacks and blankets to community projects, NHS hospitals, care homes and food banks across the UK.

Photo: British Airways
Photo: British Airways

From its range of First Class items, a blanket cost £9 ($12) while a set of four bread baskets cost £42.

An equipment canister used onboard the British Airways Boeing 747-400 is being sold for £75, and a set of five “luxurious Club World slippers, as seen on Far East flights” was put up for £10.

“This is an incredible one-off opportunity for people to bring the magic of flying with British Airways into their own homes,” BA director of brand and customer experience Carolina Martinoli said in a statement.

A Waste Top Loader Trolley for £150 appeared to be out of stock.
A Waste Top Loader Trolley for £150 appeared to be out of stock.

In June the company said it would sell at least 10 works of art including pieces by Damien Hirst to help raise funds.

The pandemic has taken a toll on the company, along with much of the travel industry. Its owner International Airlines Group (IAG.L) nosedived to a €6.2bn pre-tax loss for the first nine months of the year, compared with a profit of €2.3bn a year ago.

The FTSE 100 company said the results were “significantly impacted by the outbreak of COVID-19, which has had a material impact on the global airline and travel sectors, particularly from late February 2020 onwards and with no immediate signs of recovery.”

Last week it was reported British Airways passengers will be tested for coronavirus in a bid to prove the UK’s quarantine policy should be scrapped.

The airline announced it will trial a voluntary testing regime in partnership with American Airlines which will involve hundreds of travellers on selected routes from the US to Heathrow.

WATCH: What is the budget deficit and why does it matter?