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Article from BTNews 2 NOVEMBER 2020

Heathrow’s frank admission

In an astonishing admittance Heathrow has highlighted that Paris is now Europe’s top airport, at least for September.  A pointer to Government!

“Britain is falling behind because we’ve been too slow to embrace passenger testing. European leaders acted quicker and now their economies are reaping the benefits. Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: “Paris has overtaken Heathrow as Europe’s largest airport for the first time ever, and Frankfurt and Amsterdam are quickly gaining ground. Let’s make Britain a winner again. Bringing in pre-departure Covid-19 tests and partnering with our US allies to open a pilot airbridge to America will kickstart our economic recovery and put the UK back ahead of our European rivals.”  

He pointed out that all three continental rivals have implemented testing regimes. The UK Government has announced an intention to introduce testing for passengers from high risk countries by 1 December to help restart the UK economy.   

In September Heathrow moved 1,256m passengers whilst for Paris it was 1,346m.

Holland-Kaye’s remarks could be seen as a veiled attack on the Government who appear not to have helped the travel industry in any way over the last six months.  An observer pointed out that whilst Transport Minister Grant Shapps was keen to promote support given in fact this was to all industries and not just travel.   

Losses widen on significant passenger decline – Heathrow’s have widened to £1.5bn in the first nine months as passenger numbers in Q3 remained down over 84%.


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