ANALYSIS: London airport summer schedules snapshot

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Flightglobal analyses the changes in the summer 2014 schedule changes at London's airports based on new Airport Coordination Limited (ACL) slot data


Iberia will cut its seat capacity at London Heathrow by almost a third this summer, new slot schedules ACL data shows.

The Spanish flag carrier will reduce weekly available seats from 34,000 in summer 2013 to 24,000 in 2014, while weekly air traffic movements will be cut a third to 112. It is, though, lifting its seats per ATM 7%.

Fellow IAG member British Airways will also reduce its weekly seat capacity this summer, but just 1.1% to 923,000.

Delta Air Lines shows an almost 240% increase in seats, But this can be partly accounted for by the fact that more slots are registered to Delta this summer than in 2013, as well as the addition of new services to Seattle and Detroit.

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That trend is reflected elsewhere with Aer Lingus, American Airlines, Lufthansa and United Airlines all reducing their weekly seat count this summer, while SAS and Air Canada register small increases. Total seats at Heathrow will stand at 58.4 million this summer, a 0.1% increase on last year.

The schedules data shows a distinct upgauge in aircraft use at Heathrow. Weekly movements in ACL's "jumbo extra" category, which includes the Airbus A380, will increase almost 38% from almost 5,000 at the start of the 2013 summer season to over 7,000 this year.

Movement among "jumbo stretch" types, such as the Boeing 777-300 and the A340-600, will increase a quarter at the start of summer 2014 at Heathrow, while "jumbo wide" types, such as the 747-400 and the A340-500, will fall 10%. "Jumbo" aircraft, such as the Boeing 747-200, 777-200, MD-11, Airbus A330 and A340 and MD-11, will decline fractionally to 3,592. Movements by "large" aircraft types such as the 757, 767 and A300 will fall more than a quarter.

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Heathrow Terminal 2 will reopen in June as a base for the Star Alliance, and airlines have allocated more than 4.4 million seats' worth of slots at the new facility this summer, ACL figures show. There will be a knock-on 20% decline in seats at Terminal 1, 8% at Terminal 3 and 7% at Terminal 4. At Terminal 5, home of Heathrow's biggest operator BA, will register a 3% increase in seats at the start of the season.


Total seats on offer at London Gatwick have risen 8.2% to 30.3 million compared with the start of the 2013 summer schedule. Seat capacity will rise 14% at the North Terminal to 15.8 million and by 2.6% to 14.4 million at the South Terminal.

EasyJet will operate 173 rotations a week, helped by using the slots it acquired from Flybe last year. New services will start to Brest, Brussels, Bucharest, Jersey, Newcastle, Paris, Strasbourg and Tel Aviv in 2014, but services to Amman and Bergen will cease, ACL says.

BA will operate a new service to Malta but will drop its Tunis route. Additional frequencies will be added on flights to Grenada, Kingston, Orlando and Punta Cana. Thomas Cook will cease routes to Faro, Orlando, Punta Cana and Varadero.

Charter operations continue their decline, with aircraft movements falling 2.9% to a little over 17,000. Aircraft movement on scheduled routes are up 4.6% at nearly 150,000 for the airport.

By seat capacity, Barcelona is the most popular destination from Gatwick with just over one million seats this summer, followed by Malaga with 857,000 and Dublin with 696,000.

The largest airline at Gatwick by seats is EasyJet with a 40% share of the market, followed by BA with 15% and Norwegian with 8%.

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London Stansted will register a 10.4% increase in seats this summer, to 14.3 million, as its traffic growth deals with airlines such as Ryanair and EasyJet bear fruit.

Charter operations as measured by weekly movements will rise 11% to almost 3,000, while movements on scheduled routes are also up 11% at nearly 80,000.

Ryanair dominates at the north London airport, with a 74% share of movements and even higher share of available seats. ACL estimates that the Irish low-cost carrier will offer 11.4 million seats this summer.


Total seats at Luton will rise 7.9% at the start of this summer season to reach almost 8.36 million. Charter services by weekly aircraft movements fall 1.5% to just under 2,000, while scheduled weekly movements are 6.2% higher at the start of the season, at 45,364.

Budapest is the largest destination by seat numbers in 2014 at 328,000, followed by Palma Majorca and Amsterdam with about 267,000 each and Bucharest with 255,000 seats available. Capacity to all four destinations registered a rise compared with 2013.

EasyJet, which has just sealed a new long-term growth deal at Luton, is the largest operator at the airport, with a 41.3% share of seats. It is followed by central European operator Wizz Air with 28.2% and Ryanair with 13.5%.

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London City

Total seat capacity at London City rises 7.9% to 3.38 million in summer 2014. BA is the dominant carrier by aircraft movements, with a 44% share, followed by Air France with 27% and Swiss with 10%.

ACL schedules show Flybe has been allocated slots there for the first time, although there is no detail on any intended destinations or start of operations.

Top routes by available seats are Amsterdam with 379,000, Zurich with 317,000 and Edinburgh with 256,000.