The newly announced flight by BA is a very good thing for the Lowcountry and frequent business travelers like me should support it. Business-class tickets will make or break the viability of this flight, not just tourists in economy. However, Mr. Wren is overselling this offer and I am concerned that an unrealistic hype will be counter productive. Two issues:
Charleston Airport (CHS) is already well connected internationally as with only one stop (Miami, Charlotte, Dallas Ft.Worth, Houston, Seattle, Chicago, Wash. Dulles, Philadelphia, Newark, JFK) you can reach with the existing carriers most major destinations in the world be it in Asia or Europe. And the current one stops get you to Europe, if you leave around noon on Sundays, in time to have at least half a productive day in the office on the European continent.
Taking BA is only eliminating one stop if you go to London Heathrow (LHR). Only then the arrival time (11.30 a.m.) allows some kind of business that Monday. As 11.30 a.m. is an awkward arrival time at LHR - too late for the morning connections and too early for the afternoon flights of BA, you loose the entire Monday. Examples for our businesses: Gothenburg with BA 222 via LHR arrives 7.30pm; Frankfurt 5.55pm; Zurich 5.45pm and Stuttgart 6.20pm.
So, outbound from my pov no real great addition. But, coming back the departure time is fantastic. Almost full day of work if you are in London and half a day or at least some morning hours if you are on the continent.
So, I guess you will see business people fly outbound oneworld flights (American via Charlotte, Miami or Philadelphia) as usual and come back on BA 221 on Thursdays.
If BA wants to change something to optimize it, they could even make the departure time from LHR and CHS even an hour later, thus one would have a full Sunday of family time or tourism in CHS, shorter layover in LHR and an even better connectivity from the Continent coming back.
So, CHS airport officials should have a realistic view and not oversell this flight.
W. Ashley Avenue