Travel Industry News 15 August 2022

Heathrow says passenger experience improving since capacity cap

Heathrow has published an update on passenger traffic, with over six million customers travelling through the airport in July. Earlier this month Heathrow said it expected 13 million people to travel through the airport between July and September – this figure has now been revised upwards to 16 million.  But a capacity cap remains in place, limiting passenger numbers to around 100,000 per day, and Heathrow said that this cap was bearing fruits in terms of improving the customer experience.  The airport said there had been fewer last minute flight cancellations, and better aircraft punctuality and baggage delivery.  It added that an additional 1,300 staff members had been recruited, bringing security resources back to pre-pandemic levels and resulting in 88% of passengers being able to clear security in 20 minutes or less.

Emirates outlines $2 billion customer experience investment

Emirates has provided details of what it says is a $2 billion investment in its inflight customer experience.  A significant part of this is taken up by plans to upgrade cabin interiors across all classes, with retrofitted or reupholstered seats, and new panelling and flooring.  The works also include the continued rollout of the carrier’s premium economy seating, which will eventually feature on over 120 A380 and B777 aircraft.

Hong Kong cuts arrivals hotel quarantine to three days

Hong Kong has announced plans to further ease its arrivals quarantine requirements.  From 12 August overseas visitors are subject to three days of compulsory hotel quarantine, down from the current seven.  However they will also have to undergo a further four days of “medical surveillance”, during which they must test daily.  Provided they test negative each day, they will be free to take public transport, go to work and visit shopping centres, but will be restricted from visiting venues where the checking of vaccine passes is required, including bars.

Deal struck to allow UK-China flights to resume

Direct flights between the UK and China are set to resume after the UK government agreed a deal with the Chinese aviation regulator.  According to the British embassy in China, an agreement has been reached to allow two-way flights between the two countries to restart – Chinese airlines will initially offer these UK-China services.  More details to follow.

Travel news as a glance:

  • Spanish high-speed rail operator Iryo to launch in November
  • Avanti West Coast’s schedules to return to sparse pandemic levels
  • Travelodge opens first new build “budget luxe” properties in London Docklands
  • Jetblue launched its Gatwick-Boston route on 4 August