British Airways To Operate San Jose’s First Boeing 747 Service

British Airways is set to operate the first scheduled Boeing 747 service to San Jose next summer, according to the airline’s booking engine. The service will be sure to excite San Jose based aviation enthusiasts.

British Airways, Boeing 747, San Jose
British Airways Boeing 747 aircraft are set to frequent San Jose from March 29th. Photo: Tom Boon – Simple Flying

British Airways operates flights to San Jose in the San Francisco Bay area on a daily basis. The flights are currently operated by a Boeing 787. However, British Airways is set to change things up for the IATA summer season as the 747 has been scheduled on the route. As such, aviation enthusiasts in San Jose may be able to see BA’s retro liveried 747s before they are all retired by 2024.

Summer 2020

British Airways will operate the Boeing 747 to San Jose on a daily basis for the duration of the IATA summer season. This means that the first Boeing 747 service will operate to the city from the 29th of March 2020 until the 24th of October 2020.

From the 25th of October, the route will revert back to the regularly scheduled Boeing 787. Along with the aircraft change, the timing of the flight has been adjusted for the summer season.

British Airways, Boeing 747, San Jose
The last Boeing 747 will leave the British flag carrier’s fleet in 2024. Photo: Tom Boon – Simple Flying

The flight will operate to the following schedule:

  • BA279 is scheduled to depart from London Heathrow at 14:55 local time. Following an 11 hour non-stop flight, the aircraft is scheduled to arrive in San Jose at 17:55.
  • BA278 is then scheduled to depart from San Jose at 20:10. Following a slightly shorter 10-hour 20-minute flight, the aircraft is due to arrive back at London Heathrow at 14:30 the next day.

Of course, schedules are always subject to change depending on a variety of factors.

Speaking to Simple Flying, a representative of San Jose Airport said:

“There is no doubt that the iconic and easily-recognizable 747 landing and departing SJC is a head-turner during its one-off operations here. It will continue to be so with seasonal daily operations on BA to begin March 29, 2020.”

They went on to add: “Also, it reinforces the message and perception that SJC, as a medium-hub airport, is and continues to be responsive to the travel needs of our 4 million market Silicon Valley service area. Additionally, it reinforces to our community that our parallel 11,000 ft. runways, four wide-body international gates, and facilities and services that we continue to expand/enhance can accommodate their service level demands.”

Retro-jet chance

There is a chance that San Jose could be graced by British Airways’ three Boeing 747’s which are painted in retro liveries. These have been specially commissioned for the carrier’s 100th anniversary earlier this year. The following paint schemes are currently in the fleet:

British Airways, Boeing 747, San Jose
There is a chance British Airways could operate its retro liveries to San Jose. Photo: British Airways

First Boeing 747

The change in the schedule was spotted by Simple Flying reader James. He pointed out that the local saying goes “SJC will never have a 747 service”. However, it seems as though this is due to change with the launch of British Airways’ 747 service.

Of course, it won’t be the first time that a Boeing 747 has ever been to the airport, as there has been the odd flight here or there, however, these haven’t been scheduled. For example, in 2015 two Delta Air Lines Boeing 747 aircraft flew into the airport. These were operating a military contract according to The Mercury News.

Are you excited that British Airways is set to fly the Boeing 747 to San Jose? Let us know why in the comments!