BA has announced that it will be operating twice-weekly flights from Heathrow to the Seychelles starting from March 24, 2018. It will be the only non-stop service between the UK and the Indian Ocean destination.
Most holidaymakers currently travel via the major Middle Eastern hubs to get to the Seychelles – having a non-stop flight will reduce travel time from around 13 hours to 10 hours.
Zoe Saunders, senior product and marketing manager, Indian Ocean and Middle East at ITC Travel Group, said: “BA’s direct flight to the Seychelles is great news for the destination. Being able to fly directly makes it all the more attractive for repeat visitors and the general noise around a route launch like this will also put it on the radar for new audiences.”
Saunders added that the non-stop flights could also make island-hopping and multi-centre trips within the Seychelles more popular with clients.
“Now holidaymakers won’t need to change planes en route, we believe it could encourage more island-hopping and multi-centre trips within the Seychelles,” she added.
“Travellers will have more energy and inclination to combine their time on Mahe with visits to one or more private islands, giving them a wider experience and a truly memorable trip.”
Sally Yendley, Indian Ocean sales consultant at Carrier, agreed that the BA flights would make Mahe “far more accessible”.
“The new British Airways flight will be the first direct UK–Seychelles route in years so we are confident it will be a real bonus for us,” said Yendley.
“As well as an increased number of business and first seats to the destination, it will offer the option of a premium economy service which we currently don’t have.
“Some of our regular Indian Ocean travellers are looking for an alternative and something different to the Maldives and Mauritius and so this is a great option.
“It also provides an ideal summer destination, as May–September is the best time to travel to the Seychelles so I would imagine it will be a really attractive option for families with school-aged children now too.”
BA’s Heathrow-Seychelles service will operate on Wednesdays and Saturdays from March to October 2018. The airline will use a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner on the route including economy, premium economy, Club World and First cabins.
The route is another boost for the Seychelles, which is already benefiting from the opening of Six Senses Zil Pasyon earlier this year, while Four Seasons will open its second property in the destination - Four Seasons Resort Seychelles at Desroches Island - early in 2018.