British Airways Charges $6 If You Want Your Tea Extra Strong in Coach

British Airways tea service isn’t as extensive as tea at the Burj al Arab in Dubai but it’s a staple of the British carrier.

British Airways Tea Service, First Class London Heathrow – San Francisco

At least it used to be.

British Airways eliminated free meals in economy on intra-European flights, and even free hot water if you bring your own tea bags initially this spring only offering to serve you airline tank water for free as long as you don’t want it heated. That received significant negative publicity and pushback.

However tea is no longer included in the ticket price for coach. What’s more British Airways sells its tea by the bag so a passenger asking for their tea extra strong reports being charged double for tea.

‘Flying to Oslo with BA on expensive tickets, my son and I asked for strong cups of tea. We were told we had to pay double as they sold it by the tea bag. Was I right to be shocked?’

British Airways did not dispute the incident, instead saying that the teabag is already attached to the disposable cups that it sells travellers on its short-haul services.

An airline source said customers could make their cup of tea stronger by adding less milk.

At £2.30 per cup, tea on British Airways costs $2.95 — or $5.90 if you want two tea bags.

No wonder this passenger in a British Airways lounge at London Heathrow was caught on video stuffing 20 cans of beer and chips in their bag to go.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. We traveled BA Econ FLR to FRA this April. My husband ordered water and they expected payment. $eal hitch was that they only accept UK credit cards so he wasn’t able to buy the water and no, no *free water was available. Who knew. Crazy. Called BA to complain post-flight and even BA Customer Service agent didn’t know seam to know about the beverage change change (effective Jan 2017). BA is trying to be more Ryan Air or Easy Jet-like?

  2. @AliW “they only accept U.K. credit cards” – this is untrue. I regularly use my US-issued AMEX Platinum card on BA….in fact I used it to buy overpriced tea only yesterday.

  3. I flew BA earlier this year on a paid AA ticket and didn’t even bother ordering anything to drink. Felt like I was flying Volaris in Mexico with them asking people for money to have a drink on the plane.

  4. A truly substandard airline that provides inferior service even in long haul first class on their 787-9 dreamliner. A trip that was far from a dream and more like a nightmare. They should not even try to compete with low cost airlines as the service in Ryanair is far better than first class with BA.

  5. Tacky…tacky…tacky…nothing says “FU” to your customers better than charging extra, much less double, for an additional tea bag — on the defacto “flag carrier” for a country where drinking tea is part of its cultural heritage!!!

    Lady Thatcher, Lord King and Sir Colin Marshall surely are spinning in their graves as the ongoing and severe brand destruction of the former “World’s Favourite Airline” by Alex Cruz and Willie Walsh continues apace…

    Good grief…even McDonald’s doesn’t charge extra for an additional tea bag…

    Yet again, British Airways proves there is no low, low enough that many airlines will stoop to…

    Truly, this is “BLOODY AWFUL”…

  6. At least it’s drinkable now. Anyone who regularly asked for tea on BA knows their idea of extra strong tea used to be just tea that’s been sitting around since the previous flight. Perfect if you like the taste of mud.

  7. LOL in a “How low can BA go?” sort of way. (My guess: even lower.) Like AliW, my wife and I were surprised to find we’d be charged for bottled water. However, after chuckling and saying we weren’t going for that, we were given free cups of ordinary water instead. Though now I do wonder where that ordinary water came from…

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