DALLAS – Terminal 4 at London Heathrow Airport (LHR) reopened on June 14 after a two-year hiatus. Both Terminals 3 and 4 at the global gateway were decommissioned at the height of the pandemic, but Terminal 3 reopened on July 15, last year.
During the time that the terminal was closed, it was briefly used to process passengers arriving from countries that required passengers to stay in government-approved hotels.
The facility, which is located on the airport’s south side, has traditionally housed SkyTeam alliance members as well as airlines that are not affiliated with an alliance. Qatar Airways (QR), despite being a member of the Oneworld alliance, was one of the most visible tenants at Terminal 4 prior to the pandemic. QR11 was the first flight to arrive at the reopened facility.
Due to lower demand, QR joined American Airlines (AA) and Japan Airlines (JL) in relocating to Terminal 5 to form a temporary Oneworld hub with British Airways (BA) and Iberia (IB). However, due to increased passenger demand, JL has returned to Terminal 3, and AA now operates a mix of flights from both Terminals 3 and 5.
Airlines Returning to T4
The airport operator is reopening in stages, with 16 airlines expected to refocus their operations at Terminal 4 by the end of June. With a number of airline lounges located within Terminal 4, it is expected that the majority, if not all, of the previous residents, will return. At the time of this writing, it was unclear when some airlines would return to Terminal 4.
There have been numerous reports of disgruntled passengers being stuck in long lines in airport terminals across the UK in recent weeks. Having enough staff in place will be critical to ensuring the success of the reopening, or we may see Terminal 4 returning to the news headlines for the wrong reasons.
Featured image: London Heathrow Airport media Center