British Airways Flies First Boeing 777 Havana Flight For 20 Years

British Airways is currently flying three Boeing 777s to Havana. The flights are the first to be operated to Cuba by the British flag carrier’s 777s in 20 years. The aircraft have been dispatched to rescue British citizens stranded on the Fred Olsen Braemar cruise ship in the Caribbean.

British Airways, Boeing 777, Havana
British Airways is operating three Boeing 777 flights to Havana to rescue stranded cruise passengers. Photo: British Airways

The last time British Airways operated a Boeing 777 to Havana was some 20 years ago from Gatwick. However, in these desperate times, we are seeing some unique flights being operated around the world. Let’s take a look at the story.

Stranded at sea

It hasn’t been the best week for the Braemar cruise ship by all accounts. According to The Points Guy, the Fred Olsen cruise ship attempted to dock in Barbados on Thursday at the end of a scheduled voyage. However, due to a coronavirus outbreak onboard the vessel, it was turned away. As the ship is registered in the Bahamas, it made its way to Freetown, however, was unable to dock here either.

British Airways, Boeing 777, Havana
The Braemar has been turned away from two ports already. Photo: Ian Boon / Simple Flying

The ship is predominately carrying British citizens and, as such, the UK government became involved in rescuing those onboard. The boat is currently en route to Mariel in Cuba (near Havana) according to MarineTraffic. Here those onboard will finally be able to disembark.

British Airways, Boeing 777, Havana
The ship is currently en route to Mariel near Havana. Photo: MarineTraffic

British Airways to the rescue

Thankfully, those on board will soon be able to return to the United Kingdom. Three British Airways Boeing 777s are currently en route to Havana to rescue these passengers. These flights are:

  • BA9111, being flown by G-STBA, a Boeing 777-300ER. It departed from London Heathrow at 10:31. At the time of writing, it was due to arrive in Havana at 16:19.
  • BA9158, being operated by G-STBG, a Boeing 777-300ER. This aircraft is due to arrive in Havana at 16:46.
  • BA9159, being operated by G-YMMT, a Boeing 777-200ER. It is due to arrive in Havana at 18:06.
British Airways, Boeing 777, Havana
Three British Airways Boeing 777s are currently en route to Havana. Photo

The exact return flight times are still being confirmed. However, Fred Olsen has confirmed that anybody with flu-like symptoms will be placed on an entirely separate flight.

British Airways declined to comment on the incident. However, in a statement a Foreign and Commonwealth spokesperson said:

“We are working around the clock to arrange evacuation flights from Cuba to the UK as soon as possible for passengers on the Braemar cruise ship.”

Simple Flying will update readers when the rescue has been completed.

Are you stuck on the Braemar? What do you think of the rescue measures? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.