Heathrow tells airlines to cancel 61 flights as average airport delays revealed

Heathrow Airport Tom Eversley shutterstock.com

Heathrow airport has told airlines to cancel 61 flights warning that more cancellations may be necessary, on the same day that average airport delays are revealed.

Heathrow’s instruction comes on Monday, July 11 with the airport advising airlines that it does not have the capacity to serve the expected passenger numbers.

Warning that more scheduled flights could be cancelled, Heathrow said that if airlines did not make sufficient adjustments to their schedules given limitations at the airport then the decision will be made for them.

A spokesperson for Heathrow told Sky News: “To maintain a safe operation we have asked some airlines in Terminals 3 and 5 to remove a combined total of 61 flights from the schedule.

“We apologise for the impact to travel plans and we are working closely with airlines to get affected passengers rebooked onto other flights.”

Airlines were given until last Friday to make adjustments to their schedules without penalty, resulting in many more scheduled cancellations with WizzAir the latest to do so. The Hungarian-owned airline despite forecasting strong sales reduced its schedule by a further five per cent.

John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow’s Chief Executive said: “We will review the schedule changes that airlines have submitted in response to the government’s requirement to minimise disruption for passengers this summer and will ask them to take further action if necessary.”

Average UK airport delays

Figures for the current year have yet to be made public but they do provide insight into what the situation may be currently, with the CAA saying that the staffing problems experienced this year are likely to have made the situation worse.

On average the CAA said flights ran 11 minutes and 48 seconds behind schedule according to data extracted by the PA news agency. Heathrow’s problems appear to have arisen in 2022 with the airport instructing airlines to cancel flights in an effort to ensure those that do fly, do so on time.

  1. Birmingham (12 minutes and 24 seconds)
  2. Southampton (12 minutes)
  3. Heathrow (11 minutes and 48 seconds)
  4. Exeter (11 minutes and 12 seconds)
  5. Aberdeen (10 minutes and 36 seconds)
  6. Doncaster Sheffield (10 minutes and 18 seconds)
  7. Luton (nine minutes and 42 seconds)
  8. Manchester (nine minutes and 30 seconds)
  9. Glasgow (eight minutes and 30 seconds)
  10. Leeds Bradford (seven minutes and 42 seconds)

Heathrow has warned that today’s instruction to cancel 61 flights is just the start with more expected once the airport has had the chance to review the changes made by airlines to their schedules for the foreseeable future.


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Written by

Peter McLaren-Kennedy

Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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