Wednesday, December 1, 2021
HomeAirlinesBritish AirwaysBritish Airways threatens to cut Heathrow flights due to hikes in charges

British Airways threatens to cut Heathrow flights due to hikes in charges

British Airways will consider cutting Heathrow flights if proposed increases in charges are implemented, the boss of the airline’s parent company has claimed.

IAG chief executive Luis Gallego said the west London airport’s fees are already among the highest in the world and are becoming “more and more expensive”.

In October, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) announced a plan to raise the cap on the airport’s average charge per passenger by up to 76%, from the current level of £19.60 to between £24.50 and £34.40.



Hiking charges will not help. It will not attract demand

Luis Gallego, IAG

Mr Gallego said Heathrow gives the UK’s aviation sector a “major advantage”, but warned that “we need to attract demand to stay competitive”.

He told the Airlines 2021 conference in Westminster: “The reality is that more than 40% of the people who use Heathrow are connecting passengers.

“They are simply passing through on their way to other destinations and could easily go by other, more competitive hubs.

“Hiking charges will not help. It will not attract demand – it will have the opposite effect.

“If the rise in landing charges goes ahead, I know IAG will not be alone in reconsidering our airlines’ use of Heathrow.”



Heathrow passengers want a reliable, quality experience. The higher charge will enable us to deliver key investments in the next five years to protect passenger service

Heathrow spokeswoman

Mr Gallego’s predecessor, Willie Walsh told the audience that the UK’s aviation sector risks “shooting everybody in the foot” by allowing Heathrow to hike charges, as passengers “have an option to go somewhere else”.

He said: “By pushing up the charges to such a high level you’re actually pushing people away from Heathrow, which will undermine significantly the recovery of the industry in the UK.”

Mr Walsh, who is now director-general of airline trade body the International Air Transport Association, added: “You can make a strong…

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