Heathrow at 79% of 2019 pax levels in May; check-in ‘generally worked well’

By Luke Barras-hill |

A total of 5.3 million passengers used Heathrow Airport in May, its busiest since March 2020 (see below).

Despite images and videos depicting lengthy queues at UK airports during the Jubilee half-term week as aviation contends with staff shortages and a ramping up of passenger demand, Heathrow insisted that 90% of travellers handled during the month were processed by security in less than 10 minutes.

The airport stated that no more flights were cancelled at short notice than on any normal day and Border Force ‘performed well’.

Terminal 4 will reopen on 14 June, with 30 airlines moving in ahead of the summer peak.

Heathrow added that while resources remain ‘tight’, similar to other airports across the UK and Europe, the operator is working closely with airlines and handlers to respond to supply and demand.

May was Heathrow’s busiest month since March 2020 – nudging 80% of 2019 passenger traffic levels – spelling encouraging news for retail operators such as World Duty Free.

John Holland-Kaye, CEO, Heathrow Airport said: “I’m immensely proud of the way my team has worked with airlines and other partners to ensure passengers got away during the Jubilee half term.

“We continue to make good progress with our plans to ramp up capacity and are working closely with airlines and government to keep supply and demand in balance as we grow, so that passengers can travel through Heathrow this summer with confidence.”

For more on Heathrow Airport, watch out for the Top 10 Airports report in the forthcoming June/July e-zine.

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