CAA to Enforce Reduced Passenger Charges at Heathrow Airport

The UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has published its Final Proposals for the maximum passenger charges that Heathrow Airport (LHR) will be able to charge airlines over the next five years.

The average maximum price per passenger that airlines will pay Heathrow will fall from 30.19 GBP today to 26.31 GBP in 2026. When the effects of inflation are removed, this is equivalent to a reduction of almost six percent each year.

The higher-level price cap was initially put in place in 2021 due to the reduction in passengers during the pandemic. The new pricing now reflects the airport industry’s continued recovery.

Heathrow Charges
In May 2022, passenger numbers at LHR were approximately 79% of pre-pandemic levels

Following extensive analysis, the CAA anticipates that these changes will ensure affordable charges for consumers while also allowing Heathrow to efficiently finance its activities. This consumer benefit will help support the recovery in passenger numbers, but should not prevent Heathrow from investing in a safe and efficient airport environment.

Richard Moriarty, Chief Executive at the UK Civil Aviation Authority, said:

“Today’s announcement is about doing the right thing for consumers. We have listened very carefully to both Heathrow Airport and the airlines who have differing views to each other about the future level of charges. Our independent and impartial analysis balances affordable charges for consumers, while allowing Heathrow to make the investment needed for the future.”

With the announcement, the CAA aims to protect the interests of consumers, as Heathrow is among the most expensive airports in the world for passenger charges. However, the charges will also allow passengers to benefit from LHR’s planned investments, which include updated security equipment and a new baggage system for Terminal 2.

Following these proposals, the Civil Aviation Authority is expected to publish a Final Decision on the modifications to Heathrow’s licence in autumn 2022.

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