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British Airways Finally Ditches Bespoke Check-In System That Caused a Slew of Operational Meltdowns

British Airways Finally Ditches Bespoke Check-In System That Caused a Slew of Operational Meltdowns

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British Airways is to ditch a bespoke multi-million-pound check-in and flight management system that caused a slew of operational meltdowns after concluding that the IT platform was getting in the way of the airline running a ‘smooth operation’.

The Heathrow-based carrier introduced its spiffily named FLY check-in system back in 2016. It is essentially a nice-looking interface for employees to access a much more complicated but otherwise reliable back-end system used by more than 100 airlines worldwide.

The backend system, designed by aviation IT company Amadeus, manages the entire check-in and flight departure process, and was already being used by British Airways before the airline decided to add an additional layer on top of the older IT system.

Designed as a friendlier IT system that didn’t require as much training to use, FLY didn’t work out to be the success that British Airways was hoping it would be.

On several occasions, FLY has failed altogether, leading to long delays and flight cancellations, while on a daily basis, FLY struggles to process information efficiently from the backend system.

Now, eight years later, British Airways has decided to ditch its FLY interface and adopt a new and upgraded version of the more complicated back-end interface. British Airways intends to slowly roll out the new interface over the coming months, although the airline will wait until the busy summer season is over before the transition begins.

The new system is part of a £750 million investment that British Airways is making into its ageing IT infrastructure over the next three years, which will include a new website and mobile app, along with new online service options for customers to better manage their bookings.

The IT upgrades will also allow British Airways to introduce “real-time contextual pricing options based on marketplace dynamics”.

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