At least 600,000 passengers to cancel travel plans in December from Heathrow

At least 600,000 passengers to cancel travel plans in December from Heathrow

COVID-19 continues to pose significant challenges for the travel industry, with Heathrow welcoming only 19.4 million passengers in 2021 – less than one quarter of 2019 and below even 2020 levels

At least 600,000 passengers cancelled travel plans from Heathrow in December due to Omicron and the uncertainty caused by swiftly imposed government travel restrictions

There is significant doubt over the speed at which demand will recover. IATA forecasts suggest passenger numbers will not reach pre-pandemic levels until 2025, provided travel restrictions are removed at both ends of a route and passengers have confidence they will not return rapidly

We are urging the UK government to remove all testing now for fully vaccinated passengers and to adopt a playbook for any future Variants of Concern that is more predictable, limits additional measures only to passengers from high-risk destinations and allows quarantine at home instead of in a hotel

This creates enormous uncertainty for the CAA in setting a new five-year regulatory settlement. We believe that the focus should be on improving passenger service, aligning incentives for airlines and airports to work together to rebuild passenger demand and maintaining affordable private financing in uncertain times. This is a chance to safeguard a world-leading hub airport for Britain and avoid a return to the “Heathrow hassle” days of the early 2000s, undermining the UK’s global trading ambitions

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: 

“There are currently travel restrictions, such as testing, on all Heathrow routes – the aviation industry will only fully recover when these are all lifted and there is no risk that they will be reimposed at short notice, a situation which is likely to be years away. While this creates enormous uncertainty for the CAA in setting a new 5-year regulatory settlement, it means the regulator must focus on an outcome that improves service, incentivises growth and maintains affordable private financing.” 

Traffic Summary      
       
December 2021     
       
Terminal Passengers
(000s)
 Dec 2021% ChangeJan to
Dec 2021
% ChangeJan 2021 to
Dec 2021
% Change
Market      
UK             226173.6          1,76821.1          1,76821.1
EU             815134.0          7,258-9.9          7,258-9.9
Non-EU Europe             212161.9          1,537-13.8          1,537-13.8
Africa             16755.2          1,040-9.4          1,040-9.4
North America             798540.4          3,338-13.6          3,338-13.6
Latin America             116172.1             413-4.3             413-4.3
Middle East             483114.6          2,301-6.6          2,301-6.6
Asia / Pacific             304131.3          1,739-40.3          1,739-40.3
Total          3,122173.0         19,393-12.3         19,393-12.3
       
       
Air Transport Movements Dec 2021% ChangeJan to
Dec 2021
% ChangeJan 2021 to
Dec 2021
% Change
Market      
UK          2,118113.3         17,21413.5         17,21413.5
EU          9,792173.1         72,559-11.9         72,559-11.9
Non-EU Europe          2,102165.7         14,433-14.7         14,433-14.7
Africa          1,00632.7          7,8865.7          7,8865.7
North America          4,55999.6         34,7730.2         34,7730.2
Latin America             60990.3          3,1576.6          3,1576.6
Middle East          2,00333.4         17,0442.5         17,0442.5
Asia / Pacific          2,44314.2         22,966-6.9         22,966-6.9
Total         24,63299.1       190,032-5.4       190,032-5.4
       
       
Cargo
(Metric Tonnes)
 Dec 2021% ChangeJan to
Dec 2021
% ChangeJan 2021 to
Dec 2021
% Change
Market      
UK               10109.5             220-9.7             220-9.7
EU          9,0937.1       121,19559.3       121,19559.3
Non-EU Europe          5,151-12.3         67,60246.8         67,60246.8
Africa          8,5810.1         77,59512.2         77,59512.2
North America         45,61644.3       481,73324.6       481,73324.6
Latin America          3,109-5.9         23,490-30.4         23,490-30.4
Middle East         19,4715.4       228,6178.0       228,6178.0
Asia / Pacific         36,15711.1       402,46125.7       402,46125.7
Total       127,18816.8    1,402,91322.6    1,402,91322.6

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