New London Heathrow Airport (LHR) slot reports show many new arrivals at the historically difficult to reach airport. In addition to JetBlue, several other carriers appear to have secured slots at Heathrow for the summer. Assuming the UK opens in time for the summer, these airlines could benefit significantly from the new slots.
The new report comes from Airport Coordination Limited (ACL). The report details some of the new slots granted to carriers.
New inbound carriers
One of the biggest winners of new slot machine applications is JetBlue. The airline now has the option of operating routes from both New York and Boston to London, although it will likely be at more than one airport in London.
A new carrier on the market is Bamboo Airways. The daring Vietnamese startup appears to be targeting flights from London to both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. Two of Vietnam’s largest cities, Bamboo Airways, appear to be planning to send a Boeing 787 Dreamliner on this route, assuming Vietnam opens up to regular international travel.
Our 787 #Dreamliner The family has just grown a bit with the welcome of a new special member, China Aircraft Leasing Company (CALC). We are delighted to deliver their first 787-9 which joins the @bamboo_airways rented fleet to transport passengers directly to their dream destinations. pic.twitter.com/zrzafD6IVt
– Boeing planes (@BoeingAirplanes) January 8, 2020
Loganair, a UK regional airline, appears to have secured a significant number of slots and operations at Heathrow. Loganair targets regional routes from Heathrow. in Newquay, Teesside and the Isle of Man.
Rwandair, a growing African carrier, has also received slots from Heathrow to serve its hub in Rwanda. Rwandair has traditionally served Gatwick and had planned to travel to Heathrow as late as the end of last year.
Canadian carrier WestJet also received slots. According to the report, the carrier is considering both Vancouver and Calgary to perform Heathrow flights. WestJet currently flies to Gatwick.
Next up is Wideroe, which has been given slots to run operations in Bergen, Norway. The airline will likely use its Embraer E190-E2 aircraft to perform these flights to maximize slot capacity and value.
Indian carriers get slots
SpiceJet and Vistara have also been given slots to operate routes to India. SpiceJet has been given enough slots to operate in Delhi. Vistara was also given the slots to conduct operations in Delhi, although Vistara was given more rights. Vistara will likely use its Boeing 787 Dreamliners on flights to London.
India is traditionally served by Air India, Virgin Atlantic and British Airways. However, there is a huge market for flights between India and the UK. Assuming there is enough demand to run flights and border restrictions have been lifted on both sides, this summer there could be plenty of new air services.
The slot machine situation in London
London-Heathrow is known for having some of the most expensive slot machines in the world. Carriers paid tens of millions of dollars to get the slot pairs they wanted for flights to and from one of the world’s most important business centers.
There is still a demand for airlines to launch flights to London, although business travel is on the decline. The outlook for leisure travel is much better, however, and London has a lot to offer. A mixture of pent-up demand and a general desire for tourism has fueled many hopes of continuing to operate London’s services.
Heathrow has seen a reduction in air services from some of its existing carriers, which has led to new slots for carriers. As these slots become available, carriers can apply for and expect to obtain and hold the slots for the long term to operate their flights as long as those flights are still profitable.
Are you happy to see these new carriers getting slots at Heathrow? Let us know in the comments!