bmi sold

By | Category: Travel news

What are we to make of the decision announced this morning that IAG (the owner of BA and Iberia) has agreed terms with Lufthansa to buy bmi for £172.5 million?
Virgin screams that this won’t be good for us travellers because IAG will control about 53% of slots at Heathrow. But Lufthansa has a greater control at Frankfurt as has Air France at Paris and KLM at Amsterdam so that argument isn’t going to work with the regulators. IAG says, according to Sky, that it is a great deal for consumers but doesn’t say why. But the deal may not include bmi baby, the low cost side or bmi Regional which is based in Aberdeen as Lufthansa can sell these separately.
It is going to mean fewer planes and fewer jobs but for the traveller it probably means little. Why? Because if routes close you can bet easyJet or Ryanair, amongst others, will be looking at picking them up. For passengers using East Midlands Airport where bmi is based, there may be fewer services as IAG “rationalises” the airline. In particular what competition will there be on the Edinburgh-Heathrow route if the takeover goes through? The Scottish government and business leaders have raised links to Scotland as an issue. Apart from that, Heathrow users might find a little less competition on some routes. For the rest of us, what happens to bmi Regional might be more important.

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