LONDON – London Heathrow Airport (LHR) is considering raising tariffs to access its terminal aprons to help compensate for losses due to COVID-19. The plan, which will be activated in the fourth quarter of 2021, is aligned with those of all other UK airports.

London Heathrow aerial view. Photo: London Heathrow airport

Low Emission

The Forecourt Access Charge (FAC) wants to replace plans to reduce emissions at LHR announced in May 2019. HULEZ would introduce minimum emissions standards by charging the dirtiest and most polluting vehicles. FAC’s plans also included a proposal for the Heathrow Vehicle Access Charge (HVAC), which was to be fitted with the construction of the third runway.

In fact, the ultimate goal was to establish public transport as the main transport to reach the main London airport.

London Heathrow T5. Photo: Wikimedia.

FAC Policy

The FAC will cost each user £5 and will apply to all vehicles entering the apron, with some exemptions. Similar schemes include Manchester, which charges £5 for five minutes outside the main terminal doors, and Glasgow, which charges £4 for ten minutes.

Surrey live reported that London’s second major airport, London Gatwick (LGW), will introduce the same fare.

London Heathrow Airport Terminal 5. Photo: Pascall Watson.

Car Trips Dropped

Air Quality News claimed that in the UK car travel dropped 80% during the spring lockdown – this is because people are hoping to travel safer and more socially distant. KPMG has published in a report that transport operators will have to promote public transport as a safe means of transport.

Indeed, The Guardian announced that auto sales in the country rebounded after lockdown restrictions were eased.

London Heathrow Photo: Heathrow

Statement from London Heathrow Director

Tony Caccavone, Heathrow’s Director for Surface Access, said, The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have been severe, especially on the aviation industry with Heathrow’s passenger numbers down more than 80% and the company loses £5m a day.”

“These changes will help us financially protect the company and save jobs in the short term, while also allowing us to stay on track to our long-term goals of providing safe, sustainable and affordable transportation options in the future.”

Featured image: LHR by night. Photo: London Heathrow