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A five-year investment plan, currently awaiting approval from airport bosses, could see passengers flying from Heathrow paying higher ticket prices from next year.
In a bid to secure investment to plough into the new Terminal 2 and improved customer service, Heathrow wants regulators to allow it to charge airlines more to use the airport between 2014 and 2019. The £3bn plan, which is yet to be approved by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), will see charges go up by the equivalent of £19.33 per passenger for 2012/3, reaching a possible £27.30 per passenger in 2018/9.
Heathrow chief Colin Matthews said that the airport expected passenger numbers to increase from its present level, which stands at just under 70mn, to around 72mn by 2018/9. The increase in charges would pay for investment including the opening of the new Terminal 2 in 2014 and improved check-in and baggage facilities. “Heathrow faces stiff competition from other European hubs and we must continue to improve the service we offer passengers and airlines,” Mr Matthews said.
However, some of the airlines that use the airport are not convinced the changes will have a positive effect. Virgin Atlantic said: “We are totally committed to improving the passenger experience at Heathrow. However, we believe this can be done without a repeat of the incredibly steep price rises we have seen in airport charges in the last few years.”
British Airways said: “We hope the regulator (the CAA) will give a fair ruling in the months ahead, which doesn't penalise customers and airlines.” The CAA will publish its final decision in January 2014. With the rising costs in mind, how can you keep overall holiday costs to a low?
Booking flights in advance or at the last minute is a good way to save money, as it organising your travel money in advance to avoid expensive airport rates. You can keep potential holiday costs to a minimum by taking out a travel insurance policy suitable to your needs, which will cover certain costs in the event of an emergency.
Date Created: 14/02/2013