Heathrow Airport in London has requested airlines to reduce their flying capacity this summer to no more than 100,000 passengers per day.
The airport, which has apologized for substantial queue and luggage difficulties in recent weeks, has stated that extraordinary measures are being taken to reduce future inconveniences. The new limit is in effect until at least September 11, according to Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye.
Despite the increased passenger cap, Holland-Kaye believes airlines have already sold an excess of seats for the summer, therefore “we are encouraging our airline partners to halt selling summer tickets to minimize the impact on customers.”
“By making this intervention now, our objective is to protect flights for the vast majority of passengers at Heathrow this summer and to give confidence that everyone who does travel through the airport will have a safe and reliable journey and arrive at their destination with their bags,” Holland-Kaye said.
“We recognize that this will mean some summer journeys will either be moved to another day, another airport or be canceled and we apologize to those whose travel plans are affected.”
According to the BBC, the request comes as Heathrow has been battered in recent weeks, with photographs emerging of piled-up, misplaced luggage, and lengthy lines. British airlines, like airlines throughout the world, have been hit hard by widespread cancellations.
Heathrow, for its part, reported 40 years of passenger increase in only four months, with daily passenger counts “routinely” reaching 100,000 and over 6 million passengers transiting in June alone. By the end of July, the airport intends to have the same number of security staff as there were just before the pandemic.