Heathrow airport has released its full business plan for Q6, the regulatory period between 2014 2019, with the continued investment of £3 billion being pledged, which could lead to higher charges for airlines operating from the hub.
The £3 billion investment will go towards the completion of Terminal 2, construction of wider taxiways to aid the movement of wide-body aircraft such as the A380 around the airfield, and a new integrated baggage system. Heathrow has already invested £11 billion in improvements since 2003.
Heathrow has outlined a set of priorities for this new injection of investment, which include: The opening of T2 in 2014 and the movement of airlines to the new terminal. This will also allow for the closure of T1 in 2016, leading to operational savings; building more self-service kiosks and bag drops and introducing free wifi; customer service training ; better surface access, including rapid transfer pods to link Terminals 2 and 3 with their business car parks; funding towards the government’s Crossrail project; new retail brands and lounge products; and ntegrated baggage system connecting T3 and T5 via a tunnel.
Airlines have been briefed on the Q6 plans, and a proposed RPI+5.9 per cent total increase in aeronautical charges over this period has already brought a reaction from carriers. This increase will see the average price per passenger across all flights reach £27.30 in 2018/19, an increase that could be applied to ticket prices by airlines, to some extent at least.