Queen’s funeral: Heathrow cancels flights for Monday

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Image Source: Time Out

Due to Queen Elizabeth’s state funeral, a 15% schedule change is expected at Heathrow Airport on Monday. This, it was stated, is done to guarantee that the skies over London are silent throughout the celebrations.

As a result, 100 flights with British Airways and four flights with Virgin Atlantic will be canceled.

Separately, a French air traffic control strike on Friday is expected to have an impact on tens of thousands of passengers. Many flights that fly over France, not just to and from the country, will be among the ones that are canceled.

Flight disruption by Heathrow

According to Heathrow all takeoffs and landings on Monday will be delayed for 15 minutes before and after the two-minute moment of silence that will follow the burial.

There will be no entries after that between 13:45 BST and 14:20 BST for the hearse procession and no departures between 15:03 BST and 16:45 BST for the ceremonial procession down the Long Walk to Windsor Castle.

Departures will be lowered between 16:45 and 21:00 BST to support the committal service at St. George’s Chapel.

Also, flights will be rerouted to avoid flying over Windsor Castle when the private family service and interment occur.

In a statement, Heathrow expressed regret for the inconvenience but added that, out of respect, alterations would be made to the airport’s to-and-from operations on Monday to prevent noise impact in particular areas at particular times.

Due to guidelines from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), travelers whose flights are severely delayed or canceled on Monday due to improvements at Heathrow will not be legally eligible for financial compensation. This is due to the likelihood that these may be regarded as extraordinary circumstances.

Airlines do, however, provide passengers with refunds or new reservations.

British Airways stated that their cancellations were on short-haul European flights where many services operate on the same route and that it was adding larger planes where it was practical to aid passengers in rebooking on flights that were actually operating.

They also have the option of receiving a refund. There won’t be any long-distance BA flights impacted, although some will be rescheduled.

Virgin Atlantic expressed regret for the inconvenience as well. According to a spokeswoman, travelers on the impacted flights between Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Heathrow would, whenever feasible, be rebooked on alternate same-day services, given the option to rebook at a later date, receive a voucher, or ask for a refund.

In order to lessen the effect of these restrictions on travelers, it was stated that the airport and airlines were collaborating closely with the provider of air navigation services, NATS.

A representative for Heathrow stated that additional staff would be available in the terminals to assist travelers and that people were encouraged to take public transportation rather than drive because the area around the airport would be quite congested.

Along with these adjustments, Heathrow will observe the National Moment of Reflection with a one-minute silence at 20:00 on Sunday, air the Queen’s burial on screens on Monday, and close non-essential stores.

Read Also: Queen Elizabeth II has died aged 96 

Along with restaurants, cafes, and pubs, stores deemed “vital” will continue to be open, such as WH Smith, Boots, and Travelex.

French strikes

Separately, a French air traffic control strike on Friday is expected to have an impact on tens of thousands of passengers.

Eighty thousand people were impacted by Ryanair’s cancellation of 420 flights, the majority of which were planned to fly through France.

British Airways will cancel 22, EasyJet will cancel 76 flights, while Air France will only operate 45% of its short-haul flights.

As inflation climbs, the SNCTA air traffic control union claimed that the reasons for the walkout were recruiting and pay.

All impacted passengers, according to Ryanair, were informed this morning. Typically, the low-cost airline runs over 3,000 flights per day.

The operations director of Ryanair, Neal McMahon, referred to it as “inexplicable” because “thousands of European nationals and visitors’ travel plans will be unfairly interrupted.”

He claimed that domestic flights within France are protected by French law, but flights over the nation are not.