BA cuts 10,000 flights to and from Heathrow

Staff shortages in the airline industry an ongoing problem

British Airways has announced that it is to cut 10,000 flights to and from Heathrow until the end of March next year. BA said that more than 600 return flights would be cancelled between now and 29 October, while the winter schedule, which runs until the end of March, would be cut by 8%.

The cuts are a reaction to the challenge it faces over staff shortages in the airline industry.

Heathrow was in chaos over the May half term and early summer, with many flights cancelled because of the shortage of staff. There were long security queues and baggage systems broke down.

The airport introduced a cap on the number of flights over the summer. Flights have been capped at 100,000 a day and a week ago the airport announced it would be extending the cap by another six weeks until the end of October. Heathrow has asked airlines to sell fewer flights.

BA, the airport’s largest operator, has already cut tens of thousands of flights over the summer and suspended sales of short-haul flights earlier this month. Now it is cutting thousands more flights.

“While the vast majority of our customers will travel as planned and we’re protecting key holiday destinations over half-term, we will need to make some further cancellations up to the end of October.”

Most cancellations will be on routes which have other daily services to the same destinations, it said in a statement. Passengers affected by the changes will be offered an alternative flight with BA or another airline or a refund, it added.

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