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readytotaxi
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Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:04 pm

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-56743571

Horror stories coming out of LHR, six hour lines sometimes to clear immigration, the Home Office not supplying enough staff to conduct checks.
Maintaining social distancing was hard as the airport was never built to "have so many people held up" in queues.
10-15,000 people arrive at the airport each day, and "certainly more than half are having delays in excess of 2-3 hours each day".
The queues would become a "much bigger" problem if rules on foreign travel are relaxed on 17 May, as the government is planning.

Sounds like the recipe for the perfect storm.
 
mxaxai
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:21 pm

For comparison, the current "10-15,000 passengers [arriving] per day" would result in a total yearly passenger count of 7-11 million. That's 9-14% of 2019's passenger numbers.

If the tests and immigration procedures are kept unchanged, this will be a disaster at the slightest hint of a return to pre-COVID traffic levels.
 
RexBanner
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:30 pm

mxaxai wrote:
For comparison, the current "10-15,000 passengers [arriving] per day" would result in a total yearly passenger count of 7-11 million. That's 9-14% of 2019's passenger numbers.

If the tests and immigration procedures are kept unchanged, this will be a disaster at the slightest hint of a return to pre-COVID traffic levels.


All completely predictable and yet overlooked. Just like how the government just seems to assume that everybody will be able to get a PCR test done. Never mind the cost it is clear that no infrastructure yet exists to provide PCR testing for the amounts of pax that would see the industry able to make a profit let alone return to anything like 2019 levels.
 
seansasLCY
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:30 pm

I travelled to LHR in January and had a pretty uncomfortable wait of about 1 and a half hours. The queue moved very slowly with only two immigration officers checking documents. Passengers getting irate and fed up too. At the time there were only two flights in the queue. A busier time must be awful. Especially as some don’t follow mask protocol and then others get annoyed too.
 
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flyingclrs727
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Wed Apr 14, 2021 8:15 pm

So are they going to have a provision for fully vaccinated passengers? It's awfully expensive and wasteful to require a PCR for every passenger.
 
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DocLightning
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Wed Apr 14, 2021 10:04 pm

Is the fact that the UK has left the EU also partially responsible for this, so now EU citizens have to go through the regular immigration?
 
Tristar787
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Wed Apr 14, 2021 10:48 pm

DocLightning wrote:
Is the fact that the UK has left the EU also partially responsible for this, so now EU citizens have to go through the regular immigration?


I flew into LHR yesterday from the US. The e-gates at the border are closed. All passengers are now required to speak to an immigration officer in person so that their documentation could be reviewed. I was in the formerly ‘expedited’ queue with British travellers, Americans, EU citizens, Canadians, etc. I waited about 1:30 and that was only to process a handful of flights. I can’t see how this current system can be in place should international travel be allowed next month.
 
seansasLCY
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 2:11 am

DocLightning wrote:
Is the fact that the UK has left the EU also partially responsible for this, so now EU citizens have to go through the regular immigration?


Nothing has changed in that regards. The UK always had checks on arrival as it wasn’t a member of Schengen. When the E gates are open, the UK actually allowed more than just EU members to use them with Canadians, US, Japanese, South Korean and Singaporeans among others also allowed. However because they now need to check all the documents - test, passenger locator form etc all these checks are being done by officers (usually - occassionally e gates are being opened). So no Brexit has nothing to do with this.

There are also issues because Border Force staff are working in “bubbles” to prevent transmission of covid etc so they can’t just bring in more staff which was needed anyway long before this crisis.
 
FluidFlow
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 11:08 am

I can imagine it will be really bad this summer and not only at LHR but all major airports around the world, because even if you are vaccinated, the governments will want to check that so either at and as there is no common system in place there will be different documentation from different countries for the vaccines. That will be a hell lot of paperwork that will need to be checked.
 
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chunhimlai
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 11:12 am

The queue is untenable long before covid19
 
Arion640
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 11:31 am

Sounds like me arriving at LAX at midday.
 
Arion640
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 11:32 am

flyingclrs727 wrote:
So are they going to have a provision for fully vaccinated passengers? It's awfully expensive and wasteful to require a PCR for every passenger.


I’d rather have testing in place to protect the public.
 
Aceme
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 11:37 am

People will complain if there is a queue or complain if there isn't (lack of checking/ensuring people are travelling for the right reason). You can't win. My question is: Are these travellers travelling for the right reason, or bending the rules to have a holiday. When Pakistan went onto the Red List, the amount of flights and people arriving makes me wonder!? I dare say India could be next on the "hit list".
 
airbazar
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 12:24 pm

twicearound wrote:
Arion640 wrote:
flyingclrs727 wrote:
So are they going to have a provision for fully vaccinated passengers? It's awfully expensive and wasteful to require a PCR for every passenger.


I’d rather have testing in place to protect the public.


Vaccines protect the public. Being fully vaccinated means your risk for transmission is very low which in turn protects the unvaccinated. This isn’t new to COVID, this is basic vaccine science.

You don't know that. Not even those who made the vaccine will tell you that. It has been well documented that people who have had the vaccine can still get infected and spread it to others. The only thing we know for sure is that the vaccine will protect you against severe illness. We don't even know how much the vaccine protects against the newer strains.

As for the person who prefers to have testing in place, go ahead and have fun waiting in the 12-hour line :)
 
NickLAX
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 12:42 pm

seansasLCY wrote:
DocLightning wrote:
Is the fact that the UK has left the EU also partially responsible for this, so now EU citizens have to go through the regular immigration?


There are also issues because Border Force staff are working in “bubbles” to prevent transmission of covid etc so they can’t just bring in more staff which was needed anyway long before this crisis.


Which is hogwash - as you are now ENSURING high spread among passengers you deal with EVEN if they are vaccinated there are still risks

The blame lies with the UK Home Secretary, Priti Patel who is about as inept as everyone else in the current government - all flash and incompetence abound.
 
twicearound
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 12:52 pm

airbazar wrote:
twicearound wrote:
Arion640 wrote:

I’d rather have testing in place to protect the public.


Vaccines protect the public. Being fully vaccinated means your risk for transmission is very low which in turn protects the unvaccinated. This isn’t new to COVID, this is basic vaccine science.

You don't know that. Not even those who made the vaccine will tell you that. It has been well documented that people who have had the vaccine can still get infected and spread it to others. The only thing we know for sure is that the vaccine will protect you against severe illness. We don't even know how much the vaccine protects against the newer strains.

As for the person who prefers to have testing in place, go ahead and have fun waiting in the 12-hour line :)


Studies out of Israel say otherwise, as do the phase 1 pre clinical trials in Macaque Monkeys that showed no viral transmission after vaccination. And what the manufactures have said is that the clinical trials were not designed to TEST for transmission reduction, not that it won’t. Vaccine history should make us pretty confident that they work well to prevent transmission. Just like past vaccines, where the real world data takes time to populate, expect the CDC and relevant groups to change their guidance yet again on vaccinations. That’s really what we know if you sift through the info.
 
TMccrury
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 12:59 pm

Arion640 wrote:
flyingclrs727 wrote:
So are they going to have a provision for fully vaccinated passengers? It's awfully expensive and wasteful to require a PCR for every passenger.


I’d rather have testing in place to protect the public.


Testing on the other hand is not the be all end all it is cracked up to be. For example, I had covid in October. I was tested on a Thursday and tested negative for it but I felt like I had been beat with a stick. My wife tested positive the same day. A week later, I was tested again and tested negative. Yet 3 months later, I had an antibody test done and had the antibodies. The test, in my opinion, does nothing to keep anyone safe and can be false either way.
 
clipperlondon
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 1:00 pm

NickLAX wrote:
seansasLCY wrote:
DocLightning wrote:
Is the fact that the UK has left the EU also partially responsible for this, so now EU citizens have to go through the regular immigration?


There are also issues because Border Force staff are working in “bubbles” to prevent transmission of covid etc so they can’t just bring in more staff which was needed anyway long before this crisis.


Which is hogwash - as you are now ENSURING high spread among passengers you deal with EVEN if they are vaccinated there are still risks

The blame lies with the UK Home Secretary, Priti Patel who is about as inept as everyone else in the current government - all flash and incompetence abound.


Correct, correct and correct. Patel has to be the most useless Home Secretary ever to have served in Government. All mouth and trousers to coin a phrase. She was even found guilty of bullying staff in her department and yet Johnson kept her on, one of only many disastrous decisions made by the PM..

She is ill suited to one of the four great Offices of State and should be sacked, along with the majority of this so-called Cabinet - students playing at Government.
 
Arion640
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 1:26 pm

twicearound wrote:
airbazar wrote:
twicearound wrote:

Vaccines protect the public. Being fully vaccinated means your risk for transmission is very low which in turn protects the unvaccinated. This isn’t new to COVID, this is basic vaccine science.

You don't know that. Not even those who made the vaccine will tell you that. It has been well documented that people who have had the vaccine can still get infected and spread it to others. The only thing we know for sure is that the vaccine will protect you against severe illness. We don't even know how much the vaccine protects against the newer strains.

As for the person who prefers to have testing in place, go ahead and have fun waiting in the 12-hour line :)


Studies out of Israel say otherwise, as do the phase 1 pre clinical trials in Macaque Monkeys that showed no viral transmission after vaccination. And what the manufactures have said is that the clinical trials were not designed to TEST for transmission reduction, not that it won’t. Vaccine history should make us pretty confident that they work well to prevent transmission. Just like past vaccines, where the real world data takes time to populate, expect the CDC and relevant groups to change their guidance yet again on vaccinations. That’s really what we know if you sift through the info.


Vaccination and testing should both be required for double security - I want to keep britain safe.
 
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jfklganyc
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 1:59 pm

Arion640 wrote:
twicearound wrote:
airbazar wrote:
You don't know that. Not even those who made the vaccine will tell you that. It has been well documented that people who have had the vaccine can still get infected and spread it to others. The only thing we know for sure is that the vaccine will protect you against severe illness. We don't even know how much the vaccine protects against the newer strains.

As for the person who prefers to have testing in place, go ahead and have fun waiting in the 12-hour line :)


Studies out of Israel say otherwise, as do the phase 1 pre clinical trials in Macaque Monkeys that showed no viral transmission after vaccination. And what the manufactures have said is that the clinical trials were not designed to TEST for transmission reduction, not that it won’t. Vaccine history should make us pretty confident that they work well to prevent transmission. Just like past vaccines, where the real world data takes time to populate, expect the CDC and relevant groups to change their guidance yet again on vaccinations. That’s really what we know if you sift through the info.


Vaccination and testing should both be required for double security - I want to keep britain safe.



Ill mail you a rock then. If you hold it, it will protect you.

Sounds ridiculous right?

There’s a natural human emotion to try to cloak yourself in protection anytime a risky situation arises.

The reality is the instant tests are give or take 50 percent accurate. Much like HIV tests, It just means that you don’t have a viral load at the moment. But an hour later, you may very much have a viral load and be contagious.

Bringing that full circle to travel, You are either open or you’re not. If you are open and make it untenable or impossible to conduct normal business, people can and will go elsewhere.

US travelers have a slew of islands they can go to with ease at the moment.

Britain is now an island unto itself. They have done an excellent job with their vaccination program, now it is up to them if they want to rejoin the world travel economy or not.

I would argue the benefits outweigh the risks. Given the economic fallout coming from the Brexit situation, they may want to reopen to the world for business
 
jomur
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 2:03 pm

Maybe they should be using all the terminals to spread the flights about. Doesn't airporst have to pay the Home Office for the services of the Border Force? If so then this is all about Heathrow trying to save money.
 
VSMUT
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 2:11 pm

This is for passengers entering the UK only, right? Transit passengers are exempt from this mess?
 
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Aesma
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 2:32 pm

My only experience with LHR was a couple of months before COVID. CDG-LHR-SFO on BA to take advantage of cheap Y+ fares and on an A380.

The transfer window seemed large but proved a bit stressful, the airport seemed overwhelmed by people (in October), we had to do the security (including swabs on the hands and shoes etc.) again despite having it done in France already, I'm not surprised that adding checks is causing issues.

Also the CDG-LHR flight consisted on climbing towards London, then circling and circling and circling, because of airport congestion.
 
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ClassicLover
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 2:40 pm

Aceme wrote:
People will complain if there is a queue or complain if there isn't (lack of checking/ensuring people are travelling for the right reason). You can't win. My question is: Are these travellers travelling for the right reason, or bending the rules to have a holiday. When Pakistan went onto the Red List, the amount of flights and people arriving makes me wonder!? I dare say India could be next on the "hit list".


Who, in the history of the world, has ever complained about no queue? :)

Come on now.
 
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flyingclrs727
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 3:31 pm

airbazar wrote:
twicearound wrote:
Arion640 wrote:

I’d rather have testing in place to protect the public.


Vaccines protect the public. Being fully vaccinated means your risk for transmission is very low which in turn protects the unvaccinated. This isn’t new to COVID, this is basic vaccine science.

You don't know that. Not even those who made the vaccine will tell you that. It has been well documented that people who have had the vaccine can still get infected and spread it to others. The only thing we know for sure is that the vaccine will protect you against severe illness. We don't even know how much the vaccine protects against the newer strains.

As for the person who prefers to have testing in place, go ahead and have fun waiting in the 12-hour line :)


The Pfizer study in Israel shows vaccinated people do decrease transmission of COVID-19 even if they get a COVID-19 infection. They have lower viral loads than immunologically naive people who get COVID-19. Combine being fully vaccinated with social distancing, masking, and hand washing (which we should have been doing before anyway), and there is extremely low risk of transmission.
 
noviorbis77
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 3:52 pm

seansasLCY wrote:
DocLightning wrote:
Is the fact that the UK has left the EU also partially responsible for this, so now EU citizens have to go through the regular immigration?


Nothing has changed in that regards. The UK always had checks on arrival as it wasn’t a member of Schengen. When the E gates are open, the UK actually allowed more than just EU members to use them with Canadians, US, Japanese, South Korean and Singaporeans among others also allowed. However because they now need to check all the documents - test, passenger locator form etc all these checks are being done by officers (usually - occassionally e gates are being opened). So no Brexit has nothing to do with this.

There are also issues because Border Force staff are working in “bubbles” to prevent transmission of covid etc so they can’t just bring in more staff which was needed anyway long before this crisis.


EU citizens with UK settlement now have to meet immigration rules and provide evidence of funds etc.
 
seansasLCY
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 4:26 pm

noviorbis77 wrote:
seansasLCY wrote:
DocLightning wrote:
Is the fact that the UK has left the EU also partially responsible for this, so now EU citizens have to go through the regular immigration?


Nothing has changed in that regards. The UK always had checks on arrival as it wasn’t a member of Schengen. When the E gates are open, the UK actually allowed more than just EU members to use them with Canadians, US, Japanese, South Korean and Singaporeans among others also allowed. However because they now need to check all the documents - test, passenger locator form etc all these checks are being done by officers (usually - occassionally e gates are being opened). So no Brexit has nothing to do with this.

There are also issues because Border Force staff are working in “bubbles” to prevent transmission of covid etc so they can’t just bring in more staff which was needed anyway long before this crisis.


EU citizens with UK settlement now have to meet immigration rules and provide evidence of funds etc.


That doesn’t cause long queues. You don’t have to present those things at the border. Once you have settled status you get proof of your residency and that’s done. The same as non-EU citizens who resided in the UK before brexit and managed to still travel without issues.

UK citizens in Europe also require similar requirements but we’re not getting long queues elsewhere.
 
seansasLCY
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 4:30 pm

VSMUT wrote:
This is for passengers entering the UK only, right? Transit passengers are exempt from this mess?


Yes they are exempt if they are not transiting to UK or Irish destinations. However it has a knock on effect, some flights passengers are held on the plane and released slowly to stop the queues going through the terminal. The rush and queues seems to be in the evening though so at the moment there are few connections then.

jomur wrote:
Maybe they should be using all the terminals to spread the flights about. Doesn't airporst have to pay the Home Office for the services of the Border Force? If so then this is all about Heathrow trying to save money.


I don’t believe that is correct. Heathrow publicly complained about the lack of Border Force and the Home Office said people shouldn’t be traveling anyway.

Terminal 3 is set to reopen in July apparently.
 
asdf
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 4:38 pm

flyingclrs727 wrote:
So are they going to have a provision for fully vaccinated passengers? It's awfully expensive and wasteful to require a PCR for every passenger.


Antigen tests have a really high false-negativ rate ... even if correct applied

You need the PCRs
 
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flyingclrs727
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 4:47 pm

asdf wrote:
flyingclrs727 wrote:
So are they going to have a provision for fully vaccinated passengers? It's awfully expensive and wasteful to require a PCR for every passenger.


Antigen tests have a really high false-negativ rate ... even if correct applied

You need the PCRs


If you're fully vaccinated and asymptomatic, why do you need any testing at all? Vaccination has been shown to be effective in decreasing transmission.
 
N766UA
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 5:54 pm

Heathrow had the worst lines I’ve ever seen in my life, including amusement parks, and that was 13 years ago. If they never addressed that, I can’t imagine how that airport is even usable at this point.
 
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Nomadd
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 6:06 pm

flyingclrs727 wrote:
asdf wrote:
flyingclrs727 wrote:
So are they going to have a provision for fully vaccinated passengers? It's awfully expensive and wasteful to require a PCR for every passenger.


Antigen tests have a really high false-negativ rate ... even if correct applied

You need the PCRs


If you're fully vaccinated and asymptomatic, why do you need any testing at all? Vaccination has been shown to be effective in decreasing transmission.

Because people would get their panties in a twist if you treated vaccinated folk differently than the ones who think astrology is a science.
 
wr911
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 6:39 pm

Heathrow has never been great, nothing better than standing for hours at end with low ceilings and no air movement. I heard JFK was/is bad as well.
 
noviorbis77
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 6:40 pm

seansasLCY wrote:
noviorbis77 wrote:
seansasLCY wrote:

Nothing has changed in that regards. The UK always had checks on arrival as it wasn’t a member of Schengen. When the E gates are open, the UK actually allowed more than just EU members to use them with Canadians, US, Japanese, South Korean and Singaporeans among others also allowed. However because they now need to check all the documents - test, passenger locator form etc all these checks are being done by officers (usually - occassionally e gates are being opened). So no Brexit has nothing to do with this.

There are also issues because Border Force staff are working in “bubbles” to prevent transmission of covid etc so they can’t just bring in more staff which was needed anyway long before this crisis.


EU citizens with UK settlement now have to meet immigration rules and provide evidence of funds etc.


That doesn’t cause long queues. You don’t have to present those things at the border. Once you have settled status you get proof of your residency and that’s done. The same as non-EU citizens who resided in the UK before brexit and managed to still travel without issues.

UK citizens in Europe also require similar requirements but we’re not getting long queues elsewhere.


True.

But it will take longer. A glance at a passport and a scan taking a few seconds can now take up to a minute to ensure the EU citizen meet the requirements of the Immigration Rules.

Landing cards have gone which will save time.
 
seansasLCY
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Thu Apr 15, 2021 8:06 pm

noviorbis77 wrote:
seansasLCY wrote:
noviorbis77 wrote:

EU citizens with UK settlement now have to meet immigration rules and provide evidence of funds etc.


That doesn’t cause long queues. You don’t have to present those things at the border. Once you have settled status you get proof of your residency and that’s done. The same as non-EU citizens who resided in the UK before brexit and managed to still travel without issues.

UK citizens in Europe also require similar requirements but we’re not getting long queues elsewhere.


True.

But it will take longer. A glance at a passport and a scan taking a few seconds can now take up to a minute to ensure the EU citizen meet the requirements of the Immigration Rules.

Landing cards have gone which will save time.


It really isn’t increasing the time. EU citizens can still visit without issues. They just have a limit on how long they can stay. There are not other checks being carried out. It’s the EU which has banned brits from entering unless resident or meeting exemptions.

Once covid has gone, EU citizens will continue to be able to use the E gates so there will be no difference in the checks for them verses the checks for British citizens coming home.
 
itisi
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 12:32 am

why are so many people flying anyway?
 
ThomasCook
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 12:37 am

seansasLCY wrote:
noviorbis77 wrote:
seansasLCY wrote:

That doesn’t cause long queues. You don’t have to present those things at the border. Once you have settled status you get proof of your residency and that’s done. The same as non-EU citizens who resided in the UK before brexit and managed to still travel without issues.

UK citizens in Europe also require similar requirements but we’re not getting long queues elsewhere.


True.

But it will take longer. A glance at a passport and a scan taking a few seconds can now take up to a minute to ensure the EU citizen meet the requirements of the Immigration Rules.

Landing cards have gone which will save time.


It really isn’t increasing the time. EU citizens can still visit without issues. They just have a limit on how long they can stay. There are not other checks being carried out. It’s the EU which has banned brits from entering unless resident or meeting exemptions.

Once covid has gone, EU citizens will continue to be able to use the E gates so there will be no difference in the checks for them verses the checks for British citizens coming home.


The EU most certainly has not 'banned' brits from entering. The UK made itself a 'third country' by choice and as such it is now treated as one - and that means no entry into the EU from third countries unless you hold residency status or certain other particular exemptions. And quite rightly so. Why should the UK be exempt from this? Just because it's the UK?

As to the situation at the border, there really is no excuse for 6 hour waits regardless of what is going on. In some cases, I would have to wait in line to clear the border for almost as long as a flight from DXB-LHR would take. And that is just not acceptable. The UK government as executed its response to COVID horrifically at every junction. Do they score points for vaccine roll out? No, I don't think so as they are bending vaccine manufacturer guidance just to keep up appearances and for the sake of trying to save face and say "we've vaccinated millions". Yes, you have, but with 12 weeks between jabs. That isn't the case in Europe hence why they aren't at the same numbers the UK is at - that said there are still several EU nations ahead of the UK when it comes to % fully vaccinated.
 
seansasLCY
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Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 5:30 am

ThomasCook wrote:
seansasLCY wrote:
noviorbis77 wrote:

True.

But it will take longer. A glance at a passport and a scan taking a few seconds can now take up to a minute to ensure the EU citizen meet the requirements of the Immigration Rules.

Landing cards have gone which will save time.


It really isn’t increasing the time. EU citizens can still visit without issues. They just have a limit on how long they can stay. There are not other checks being carried out. It’s the EU which has banned brits from entering unless resident or meeting exemptions.

Once covid has gone, EU citizens will continue to be able to use the E gates so there will be no difference in the checks for them verses the checks for British citizens coming home.


The EU most certainly has not 'banned' brits from entering. The UK made itself a 'third country' by choice and as such it is now treated as one - and that means no entry into the EU from third countries unless you hold residency status or certain other particular exemptions. And quite rightly so. Why should the UK be exempt from this? Just because it's the UK?

As to the situation at the border, there really is no excuse for 6 hour waits regardless of what is going on. In some cases, I would have to wait in line to clear the border for almost as long as a flight from DXB-LHR would take. And that is just not acceptable. The UK government as executed its response to COVID horrifically at every junction. Do they score points for vaccine roll out? No, I don't think so as they are bending vaccine manufacturer guidance just to keep up appearances and for the sake of trying to save face and say "we've vaccinated millions". Yes, you have, but with 12 weeks between jabs. That isn't the case in Europe hence why they aren't at the same numbers the UK is at - that said there are still several EU nations ahead of the UK when it comes to % fully vaccinated.


Nobody was arguing that the EU should treat the UK differently. The EU has banned 3rd countries (with a few exceptions) and that includes the UK. Therefore the EU has banned brits from entering.

As to the other points they go off topic. I agree the UK had a poor handling of the pandemic but the vaccine is doing well and had a notable impact. The UK had the lowest rate of infection in Europe now. The time between jabs was approved by the UK Chief Medical Officer and there have been subsequent studies since which prove it has no negative impact. At the end of the day isn’t it better to get more people 70% protected than a small number 90% protected? The UK also funded vaccine research and development hence why supplies have gone to the UK.

I live in Sweden and the vaccine roll out here has been a disaster and every day we pay for that.

You are right. There is no excuse for a six hour wait. But this is the Home Secretary playing politics. The travelers have been scapegoated to be spreading this virus. The public can’t go on holiday so she can say look we make sure we check everything and they wait. It’s the worst kind of policy.
 
User avatar
ClassicLover
Posts: 5261
Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2004 12:27 pm

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 6:36 am

seansasLCY wrote:
That doesn’t cause long queues. You don’t have to present those things at the border. Once you have settled status you get proof of your residency and that’s done. The same as non-EU citizens who resided in the UK before brexit and managed to still travel without issues.

UK citizens in Europe also require similar requirements but we’re not getting long queues elsewhere.


wr911 wrote:
Heathrow has never been great, nothing better than standing for hours at end with low ceilings and no air movement. I heard JFK was/is bad as well.


N766UA wrote:
Heathrow had the worst lines I’ve ever seen in my life, including amusement parks, and that was 13 years ago. If they never addressed that, I can’t imagine how that airport is even usable at this point.


As someone else said, the queues at London Heathrow are because the UK Home Office is not supplying enough Border Control officers to process the amount of people passing through. The E-Gates are not in use due to Covid, so everyone has to see a person, as they want to check everyone's paperwork individually. Due to this rule by the UK Home Office, there are now huge queues. Heathrow Airport have constantly told the Home Office that they need more Border Control staff to be rostered on duty if they are to process people this way, but the UK Home Office has done nothing about it.

I was watching the LHR CEO talk on EuroControl's Aviation StraightTalk about this in his interview earlier this week. Heathrow Airport gets the blame, but it's not Heathrow's fault. Actually, the 45 minute thing on YouTube here is a really good look at how an airport operates. He gives some really interesting things about security and the lack of slots for new entrants, as well as other pressures they face. It's here - https://youtu.be/ueZHOMarydE
 
Jomar777
Posts: 614
Joined: Tue Oct 20, 2015 8:45 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 7:58 am

DocLightning wrote:
Is the fact that the UK has left the EU also partially responsible for this, so now EU citizens have to go through the regular immigration?


Nothing to deal with Brexit. All to deal with COVID19 restrictions and the usual lack of Immigration Staff at the Border (even before COVID19 - there is never enough of them - only empty booths)

When COVID19 restrictions ease and e-gates are Open, EU Citizens will still be able to use them so no disruption expected.
 
Noshow
Posts: 2627
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 3:20 pm

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 8:06 am

If you want to see how to do airport immigration right, just look at Singapore. Enough staff, well organized processes, no lines, no wait, even friendly - but strict.
 
frmrCapCadet
Posts: 4986
Joined: Thu May 29, 2008 8:24 pm

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 12:58 pm

Airports in any number of ways are dysfunctional. Here is one, people from a variety of destinations so often have to funnel through a single narrow hole. At both ends of the journey. The passenger ultimately pays for the costs of the funneling. But costs are accounted for and allocated without taking customer comfort into account. A classic case of economic dysfunction. Airports and airlines know, almost to the person, exactly how many people need to pass through that funnel almost to the minute. If those passenger fees were more directly paid by the customer (the passenger, not the airline or the airport or the government) those providing the service could arrange to be there in numbers sufficient for the most efficient and timely manner. It is expensive to have a product sitting around doing nothing but standing in line. Just in Time is demanded now for most manufacturing, it is time for it to be applied to TSA, immigration, agricultural clearances etc. Both the customer and to supplier will be happy.

Technical detail, lots of TSA and immigration are required at certain times, while not the most efficient the solution is to pay more at some times than others. Standard traffic toll procedure.
 
Aither
Posts: 1313
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2004 3:43 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 12:59 pm

I think it's a general observation to be made not only for Europe but for Asia as well : there is too much downgauge of the capacity/infrastructure. There are few flights but they are 100% full, and I really mean 100%. I think airports have maintained their 2020 capacity while in 2021 the demand is much higher than a year ago.
Many observers think the passengers recovery will be limited by the capacity.
 
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spinotter
Posts: 888
Joined: Wed May 27, 2015 1:37 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 1:30 pm

itisi wrote:
why are so many people flying anyway?


On a.net, the more people flying the better.
 
Dufo
Posts: 827
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:41 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 2:23 pm

If airport were designed as what their name implies - air-ports - instead of overpriced shopping centers, more space would have been allocated to actual passenger processing needs. Passing through UK has always been a crappy experience, even before brexit and covid19. Rude, arrogant staff are a rule and everyone is treated as a suspect. No thank you.
 
IADCA
Posts: 2365
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 12:24 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 2:31 pm

"Untenable" is Tory lockjaw for "absolute disaster that we need to find someone else to blame immediately."
 
Virtual737
Posts: 1209
Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2016 6:16 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 3:08 pm

Dufo wrote:
If airport were designed as what their name implies - air-ports - instead of overpriced shopping centers, more space would have been allocated to actual passenger processing needs. Passing through UK has always been a crappy experience, even before brexit and covid19. Rude, arrogant staff are a rule and everyone is treated as a suspect. No thank you.


As a Brit I'm trying hard to find an argument against your comments... but I can't. If it makes you feel any better, the staff aren't any more polite to the natives. Even before COVID Heathrow had ridiculous queues for immigration. it's not as if the flight volume and even passenger loads aren't known well beforehand.
 
User avatar
Pellegrine
Posts: 2676
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2007 10:19 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 4:02 pm

Maybe these people should stay home and stop spreading pestilence.
 
32andBelow
Posts: 5645
Joined: Mon Sep 03, 2012 2:54 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 5:09 pm

Sounds like it’s time for people to go back to work.
 
seansasLCY
Posts: 1263
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 5:25 am

Re: Heathrow says airport queues are becoming 'untenable'

Fri Apr 16, 2021 5:22 pm

Pellegrine wrote:
Maybe these people should stay home and stop spreading pestilence.


Lots of people are traveling for work and don’t have much option. I commuted all of last year because I live in one place and had to work in another. I quit my job in March as the increased restrictions made it impossible to continue. Many people can’t afford to just quit their job and hence have to continue commuting.

When I was in the queue at LHR immigration everyone was traveling for work. We all had documents to prove it. The people around me were returning from working on a mining operation in Finland. Not everyone can work from home.

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