Cobalt Air introduces Heathrow-Larnaca, Cyprus, flights

Heathrow

By Heathrow

Published 29th March 2018

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Cobalt Air, Cyprus’ largest airline, has inaugurated a new daily service between Heathrow and Larnaca, re-establishing an important link last served by the former Cyprus Airways in 2015. A new, enhanced business class offering, including dine on demand, is being introduced coinciding with service start, complementing the airline’s increasingly popular economy experience.

The addition of Heathrow on 27th March makes it a hat-trick of London airports for expanding Cobalt Air, which is already established at London Stansted and Gatwick, plus Manchester in north west UK.

Paul Simmons, Commercial Director, Cobalt Air, commented, “Cobalt is already Cyprus’ largest airline, offering flights to over 20 destinations from the island. We are delighted to be extending our network further with a daily service between Heathrow and Larnaca. At Cobalt, we offer great value and service in our Economy cabin and large bespoke seats plus dine-on-demand catering in our Business cabin.”

Simon Eastburn, Director of Airline Business Development at Heathrow said, “We are delighted to welcome Cobalt Air to Heathrow. This daily service gives passengers more choice and greater opportunity to fly to this popular short-haul holiday destination.”

More about the new Cobalt services…

Cobalt is flying Airbus A320 aircraft from Heathrow to Larnaca with 12 seats in Business and 144 in Economy. It’s new business class product is in a two-by-two configuration with a 40” pitch and economy a generous 30”.

Timed to appeal to both business and leisure passengers, flights depart Heathrow’s Terminal 3 at 17.20 and arrive into Larnaca at 23.50. On the return journey, flights leave Larnaca at 12.45 midday and arrive back at Heathrow T3 at 15.45.

Heathrow’s Terminal 2 beat international counterparts to win Skytrax World’s Best Airport Terminal for the first time, whilst Terminal 5 was close behind as 4th best globally.

  • Terminals 2 and 5 top lists of best terminals in the 2018 Skytrax World Airport Awards

  • Heathrow also awarded ‘Best airport in Western Europe’ and ‘World’s Best Airport Shopping’

  • Awards follow year of both record-breaking passenger numbers and satisfaction scores

Passengers from around the world once again voted for Heathrow to win multiple major accolades at the 2018 Skytrax World Airport Awards, held yesterday evening at the Passenger Terminal EXPO in Stockholm.

For the 4th year running, Heathrow has been recognised as the ‘Best Airport in Western Europe’ and for the 9th year, ‘Best Airport for Shopping.’The Awards follow a record-breaking 2017 for Heathrow where investments in facilities, along with the team’s dedication to service, led to the airport’s best annual passenger satisfaction scores and highest number of passengers – 78 million – to date.

Nearly all (82%) of passengers surveyed in 2017 rated their Heathrow experience as ‘Excellent’ or ‘Very Good.’ Heathrow’s operational team this year has worked to improved flight punctuality so now a record 80.2% of flights depart within 15 minutes of theirscheduled departure.  Passengers in Terminal 5 enjoyed new terminal offers in 2017 like the ‘First Wing’ fast-track, dedicated security lanes to the British Airways’ lounge.

To have two of our terminals be voted  amongst the world’s top five is testament to the hard work our team has done to transform Heathrow for the better.

Heathrow CCO Ross Baker

Heathrow Chief Commercial Officer Ross Baker said, “To have two of our terminals be voted  amongst the world’s top five is testament to the hard work our team has done to transform Heathrow for the better. We are tremendously pleased our passengers are not only voting for us through these awards – but also with their feet –  as we saw with this year’s record breaking numbers.”

“Going forward, we will continue to invest in Heathrow to give passengers an enjoyable, reliable and affordable journey every time they travel through the airport.”

How are the Skytrax awards decided?

Skytrax’s World Airport Awards are the most prestigious accolades for the airport industry, voted by passengers in the largest, annual global airport satisfaction survey.  The 2018 Awards are based on 13.73 million airport survey questionnaires completed by passengers flying through more than 500 airports.

The top 10 rankings (1-10) for World’s Best Airport Terminal in 2018:

  1. Heathrow Airport – T2

  2. Munich Airport -T2

  3. Singapore Changi Airport – T3

  4. London Heathrow Airport -T5

  5. Tokyo International Airport (Haneda) – Int’l

  6. Madrid – Barajas Airport -T4

  7. Dubai International Airport – T3

  8. Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport – T2-M

  9. Mumbai Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport – T2

  10. Baku Heydar Aliyev International Airport – T1

Starting this summer, Heathrow-based Hainan Airlines and Tianjin Airlines will provide the UK’s first direct connections to the growing cities of Changsha and X’ian in 3 weekly services. Beijing Capital Airlines has also announced it will convert its existing charter operation to a scheduled route to Qingdao, by providing 2 scheduled weekly services from 26th March.

  • Hainan Airlines launches new direct services from Heathrow to Changsha and Tianjin Airlines from Heathrow to Xi’an – the UK’s first direct connections to the growing Chinese cities – and Beijing Capital Airlines launches scheduled Heathrow services to Qingdao

  • Frontier Economics research estimates the new routes will contribute a £26 million boost to UK economy annually

  • Heathrow pushes for the opportunity to push forward on its plans for expansion to allow more Chinese connections

These services will provide more than 217,000 new seats every year for passengers, travelling to and from China, and an additional 6,700 tonnes of new cargo space for British exports. As the UK’s largest port by value for non-EU trade, Heathrow will be uniquely positioned to make the best of the new export opportunities connectivity to these new markets offers.

Xian bell tower (chonglou) in Xian ancient city of China at dusk

According to research by Frontier Economics, the new UK connections to Changsha and Xi’an and scheduled connections to Qingdao will enable £26 million annually in economic benefits through trade and FDI and create 830 direct and indirect jobs in the UK.

More about the destinations…

Besides being known for its ancient Mawangdui Han Tombs, parks and temples, Changsha is home to more than 7 million people, and is a major commercial and transport hub, with unique local products including Changsha famous tea, stone carvings and fermented soybeans.

IMAGE:  Xian, China.

X’ian, China.

Xi’an is one of China’s most popular tourist destinations, as the starting part of the Silk Road and home to the Terracotta Army of Emperor Qin Shi Huang. With more than 8 million residents, Xi’an is an important industrial and educational centre, with major facilities for research and development, national security and China’s space exploration programme.

Well on its way to being classified as a “mega city,” Qingdao is home to more than 9 million people and has been ranked as a “golden city” by the World Bank, due to its investment climate. It is a major port, manufacturing base and home to home to Tsingtao, the best-known Chinese beer export.

An Elevated view of Qingdao Skyline. Villa and Office Buildings, Skycarper near the sea. Qingdao is a famous tourist city in east China.

More than 100 direct flights to China from Heathrow each week…

As the UK’s Hub airport, Heathrow, is already the biggest gateway to China, offering more than 100 direct flights to Chinese cities every week. Today, 55 of these go to Hong Kong, 22 to Shanghai, 20 to Beijing, 10 to Guangzhou and two to Qingdao. According to Frontier Economics, these routes already contribute more than £510m annually to the UK economy and create nearly 15,000 jobs.

While connections to Chinese cities are clearly valuable to the UK, rival EU hub airports with capacity to connect directly to 12 other Chinese destinations, including mega cities like Hangzhou, Chengdu, and Kunming, are facilitating more trade and investment to their respective countries.

Heathrow’s plans for expansion will allow the airport the capacity to offer up to 40 new long haul destinations, as well as double its cargo capacity – providing the UK with much-needed trade infrastructure at a time when the country is looking to extend its trade relationships outside the EU.

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye welcomed the new routes, saying, “China is booming and the appetite for British goods is stronger than ever. We are delighted to welcome these new airlines and routes. However, it is clear that the UK’s access to these Chinese market continues to lag behind our European rivals.”

Our nation’s biggest port is full and new routes from the UK to huge markets like Changsha and Xi’an are sadly the exception not the rule. If the UK is going to be a global trading powerhouse after Brexit, we need to expand Heathrow now – opening up to 40 new trading links that will help all of the UK thrive.

John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow CEO

Details of the new flights:

  • Hainan Airlines will fly a 3 weekly service (Mon, Weds, Fri) to Changsha starting 23rd March on a Boeing 787-800 and will go to the larger 787-900 ( capacity of 289 seats, 8 tonnes of cargo) on 1st September

  • Tianjin Airlines will fly a 3 weekly services (Mon, Fri, Sun) to Xi’an – Tianjin in May on an Airbus A330-200 (capacity of 260 seats, 8 tonnes of cargo)

  • Beijing Capital Airlines will fly a 2 weekly service (Mon & Fri) to Qingdao on an Airbus A330-200 ( capacity of 222 seats and 8 tonnes of cargo)

Download the full Frontier Economics report here.

Heathrow and Airbus are celebrating the 10th anniversary of A380 operations at the airport, which began on March 18th 2008 with the arrival of the first A380 – a Singapore Airlines flight SQ308 from Singapore Changi airport, making Heathrow one of the first to welcome Airbus’ iconic double decker.

Heathrow is now the world’s busiest A380 airport by number of A380 operators, serving 78 million passengers a year.

Every day, some 50 A380 flights carry 10% of Heathrow’s daily passenger traffic on a choice of nine airlines* to reach 15 global destinations.Passenger traffic doubles every 15 years and the A380 is and remains the best solution for absorbing growth by using aircraft slots more efficiently; especially where airport capacity is limited. Like no other aircraft, the A380 unlocks growth in a comfortable and eco-friendly way.

The A380 is also a good neighbour and won a UK noise abatement society award in recognition of its low noise operations, generating 50 per cent less noise energy on departure than its nearest competitor, as well as up to four times less when landing.

Heathrow Airport, airfield operations marshals guide Singapore Airlines Airbus A380 on to stand after first UK commercial flight, 18 March 2008.

Simon Eastburn, Director of Airline Business Development at Heathrow, commented on the milestone, “It’s been fantastic to see nine of our airlines welcome the Airbus A380 over the past decade.”

“Ten years from first flight, this pioneering aircraft has helped us reduce noise and improve efficiency whilst supporting continued passenger demand for long haul routes. This is one of the most popular aircraft for many passengers so we look forward to celebrating this milestone with them.”

10 lucky passengers to receive VIP experiences…

To celebrate the tenth anniversary, Airbus and Heathrow will surprise passengers landing at Heathrow on select A380 flights from 18 to 28 March with A380 goodies.

Ten lucky passengers will also receive VIP packs to continue their journey to London in style, including complimentary Porter service at the airport, Heathrow Express Business First tickets to Central London or WeKnowLondon Chauffeur Drive to winners’ chosen address, and a £250 WeKnowLondon voucher.

To date, more than 200 million passengers have enjoyed the A380 experience. According to a survey carried out by Epinion, 98% of A380 passengers would recommend flying on the A380 to their friends and family, and 60% are willing to make an extra effort to fly with the aircraft.

A modern feat of engineering and design, the A380 is the universally recognised benchmark. It provides airlines with a canvas to create the most outstanding business and first classes in the air, with amenities like showers, beds, bars and lounges.

Flying with the world’s leading airlines on over 120 routes and 60 destinations, the A380 is the passenger’s favourite. Airbus’ iconic superjumbo jet offers more personal space and the widest seats in the sky in all classes, including economy class.

Building on passengers’ excitement around the flagship A380, Airbus launched the first booking assistant of its kind in 2016: iflyA380.com. In January 2018, following the website’s success, Airbus unveiled the iflyA380 app, which enhances the website with more choices, features and content and new possibilities to interact with the A380.

David Dufrenois, Head of A380 Market Development at Airbus, said“The A380 is essential to the operations of Heathrow, which is today the first hub in the world for long haul traffic.

“As 70% of long haul-traffic connects through hubs, the unique A380 offer strengthens Heathrow’s passenger appeal over other airports.”

*Nine airlines are operating A380 at Heathrow airport : British Airways, Korean Air, Malaysia Airlines, Thai airlines, Singapore Airlines, Qantas, Emirates, Etihad, Qatar. Find out more about the incredible Airbus A380 here.

** Epinion: Independent agency surveying passengers arriving on A380 flights at London Heathrow.

Heathrow passengers are set to benefit as The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and Transport for London (TfL), today announced that Elizabeth line pay as you go fares within zones 1-6 will be the same as the fares on existing TfL services.

  • TfL confirms that Elizabeth line pay as you go fares in central London will be the same as the equivalent Tube fare

  • Benefits of Mayor’s TfL fares freeze extended to cover the Elizabeth line

  • Oyster and contactless payments to be accepted on rail services between Heathrow and Paddington for the first time, with daily and weekly capping applying.

NOTE: The following release has been issued by Transport for London today.

All customer service and travel information on the line will be fully integrated with TfL’s other services, with daily fare capping for Oyster and contactless applying.

Customers will also see savings well in advance of the Elizabeth line opening in December. From Sunday 20 May, the current Heathrow Connect service between Heathrow Terminals 2/3, Heathrow Terminal 4 and Paddington will be transferred to TfL.While TfL zones do not apply to these Heathrow fares, for the first time, customers will be able to use pay as you go with Oyster and contactless across the route all the way from Paddington to Heathrow.

Fares will also be cheaper or in-line with the current standard fares charged for Heathrow Connect.Standard zonal fares will continue to apply for journeys between Paddington and Hayes & Harlington, with special single fares applying for journeys to and from Heathrow Airport.

Today’s announcement means that journeys on the brand-new railway from east London stations such as Whitechapel or Canary Wharf through central London to stations in the west such as Paddington, Southall or Ealing Broadway will cost the same as an equivalent Tube journey.

As a result, passengers on the Elizabeth line will reap the benefits of the Mayor’s TfL fares freeze, currently benefitting 4 million transport journeys across London every day.Example fares include:

  • A journey from Heathrow Airport to Ealing Broadway currently costs £8.00 using Heathrow Connect.  From May, this will fall to £7.30 (peak) and £6.00 (off-peak).
  • A journey from Canary Wharf to Heathrow Airport currently costs £13.20 using the Tube and Heathrow Connect. From May, this will fall to £12.10 (peak) and £10.10 (off-peak)
  • A journey from Shepherds Bush to Heathrow Airport via Ealing Broadway currently costs £12.50 using the Central line and Heathrow Connect. From May, this will fall to £7.30 (peak) and £6.00 (off-peak)

Daily and weekly fare capping to benefit passengers

As part of the integrated service, daily fare capping for Oyster and contactless and weekly fare capping for contactless will apply, with travelcards that cover Zone 6 able to be used on services to Heathrow. For daily and weekly capping, Heathrow will be designated as ‘Zone 6’, meaning that ‘pay as you go’ customers travelling to and from the Airport from within Zones 1-6 will never pay more than the daily cap of £12.50.

All concessions which offer free or discounted travel, including the Zip Card, 60+ photocards and Veterans Concessionary Travel, will be valid on the Elizabeth line.  This will significantly reduce the cost for families travelling to Heathrow via Paddington, and mean that, from May 2018, a family of four (two adults and two children under 11) will save more than £10 travelling from Paddington to Heathrow.

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said, “The opening of the Elizabeth Line this year will transform travel across London, with new state-of-the-art trains transporting millions of people more quickly around the capital.”

“I’m delighted to announce today that the cost of travelling on the Elizabeth Line in zones 1-6 will be the same price as a similar journey on the tube – fulfilling a key manifesto pledge to deliver truly world-class transport infrastructure which is also accessible and affordable for all Londoners.

“For Londoners going to Heathrow, many of the benefits will be felt in a matter of months, with Oyster, Contactless, and cheaper fares coming in when TfL takes over the service from Heathrow Connect in May.”

Mike Brown MVO, London’s Transport Commissioner, said, “From May customers travelling to Heathrow Airport from Paddington will be able to enjoy the convenience of using Oyster or contactless as they do across the rest of the TfL network, guaranteeing the cheapest fare.

Customers will also see staff at our stations at all times when trains are running to offer them assistance, and will benefit from our ‘turn-up-and-go’ service for anyone needing assistance.”

When Elizabeth line services through central London open in December, they will transform travel across London. The railway will provide many new direct journey options between Canary Wharf, central London and Heathrow Airport, and will cut journey times dramatically and ensure London remains a world-leading city.

The opening of the Elizabeth line will help make travel to the airport more accessible and sustainable for millions of passengers and colleagues. This service, along with new rail connections to the south and west and HS2 through Old Oak Common, will put Heathrow at the heart of an integrated transport network, reduce traffic around the airport, and improve local air quality.

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye

Heathrow’s Chief Executive John Holland-Kaye, said, “The opening of the Elizabeth line will help make travel to the airport more accessible and sustainable for millions of passengers and colleagues.”

“This service, along with new rail connections to the south and west and HS2 through Old Oak Common, will put Heathrow at the heart of an integrated transport network, reduce traffic around the airport, and improve local air quality.”

More about the Heathrow Airport / Elizabeth Line connection

Opening through central London in December 2018, the Elizabeth line will redefine transport in London with quicker, easier and more accessible journeys. The new railway, jointly sponsored by the Department for Transport and TfL, will connect stations such as Paddington to Canary Wharf in only 17 minutes, transforming how Londoners and visitors move across the Capital.

Crossrail

From May, TfL Rail services will operate two trains an hour between Paddington and Heathrow using the existing Heathrow Connect trains, an identical frequency to now. A further two trains an hour will run between Paddington and Hayes & Harlington using the new Elizabeth line trains, replacing part of the Great Western inner suburban route.

Testing is underway to allow TfL to introduce the new Elizabeth line trains to the airport.For more information about the Elizabeth line, please visit tfl.gov.uk/elizabeth-line

Virgin Atlantic is today announcing a second daily service between London Heathrow and Johannesburg, or Tambo, airport. The new flights will go on sale on 24th March 2018. The route will be operated by Boeing 787-9 offering the airline’s latest cabin interiors and inflight entertainment, as well as Wi-Fi on every flight.

  • Virgin Atlantic will introduce a second daily service between London Heathrow and Johannesburg from winter 2018

  • Route operated by new Boeing 787-9 aircraft

  • The new flight will add an additional 180,000 seats between London Heathrow and Johannesburg

NOTE: The following release has been issued by Virgin Atlantic today.

Virgin Atlantic’s new service will begin flying in winter 2018 with the first flight departing on 28th October 2018. With two flights per day to South Africa’s biggest city, Virgin Atlantic expects to carry over 300,000 customers annually – helping to support tourism and trade between the two nations.

The new flight times:

  • The additional daily flight will depart London Heathrow at 4.45pm and land into Johannesburg at 5.40am local time. The service will be the first Heathrow flight to land each morning making it perfect for business travellers or those with onward connections to the rest of Africa.
  • The return flight will leave Johannesburg at 10.20pm landing back into Heathrow at 7.30am. The route has been timed to enable customers to easily connect onto flights with Virgin Atlantic and Delta to over 200 US destinations, including Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Shai Weiss, Chief Commercial Officer at Virgin Atlantic, commented,“Virgin Atlantic has been proud to serve South Africa for over 20 years. Johannesburg is one of the most popular destinations on our network so we’re delighted to add a second daily service to create even more travel opportunities for our customers.”

“From Winter 2018 Virgin Atlantic will operate two flights per day to Johannesburg to make it even easier for customers to travel for business and leisure between the UK and South Africa – as well as creating additional cargo capacity for the route.”

We’re delighted to see Virgin Atlantic add another daily service to Johannesburg from Heathrow – strengthening Britain’s connections with one of Africa’s most important markets. The new Virgin flight will boost choice for our passengers and open up new opportunities for Britain’s exporters to trade with South Africa.

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye welcomed the announcement, “We’re delighted to see Virgin Atlantic add another daily service to Johannesburg from Heathrow – strengthening Britain’s connections with one of Africa’s most important markets.”

“The new Virgin flight will boost choice for our passengers and open up new opportunities for Britain’s exporters to trade with South Africa.”

More about the new Virgin Atlantic service…

All customers travelling to and from South Africa will enjoy Virgin Atlantic’s award winning service, and a choice of booking into the Upper Class, Premium or Economy cabins.

Earlier this month Virgin Atlantic announced that it would introduce three new ticket types from spring 2018 – economy light, economy classic and economy delight.

The new South African flights will offer 36 Economy Delight seats on each service – with priority check-in and boarding, free seat selection and 34inch extra legroom seats which are expected to prove particularly popular on overnight flights.

Virgin Atlantic will fly twice daily from London Heathrow to Johannesburg. For further information please visit www.virginatlantic.com.

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Heathrow Terminal 5 today celebrates 10 years of operation, during which over 277 million passengers have travelled through on over 969,000 flights! We’ve taken a look at the astonishing facts and figures behind the Terminal.

The 10th anniversary comes just a day after HRH The Prince of Wales (Prince Charles) visited Heathrow Terminal 5 to view the amazing work that goes into keeping our passengers travelling safely and on time.

PHOTO: Her Majesty the Queen at the opening of Terminal 5

Her Majesty the Queen at the opening of Terminal 5

Our top 10 Terminal 5 facts:

  • 141 destinations across 57 countries are served from Terminal 5;
  • 149.5 million bags have travelled through the Terminal in the last 10 years;
  • The terminal has the second longest single-piece escalator in the UK at a length of 21.75m;
  • 60,000 people were involved in building Terminal 5;
  • The baggage tunnel which links Terminals 5 and 3 is 2.1km long and is part of the largest integrated baggage system in the world;
  • 277m passengers have travelled through Heathrow Terminal 5 – that’s more than the population of Brazil;
  • Terminal 5 was rated Skytrax World’s Best Terminal for 5 years in a row between 2012-2016
  • The terminal has an area of 353,020 square metres;
  • At almost a quarter of a mile long, Terminal 5 is the equivalent length of 40 Routemaster double deck buses parked end to end;
  • Her Majesty the Queen officially opened the Terminal on March 14, 2008.

Share these facts and more with our Terminal 5 10 Year Anniversary graphic below.

HRH The Prince of Wales (Prince Charles) paid a visit to Heathrow Terminal 5 this morning to meet some of the people tasked with safeguarding the UK’s busiest airport.

  • The Prince of Wales met security personnel at Heathrow during walk through of Terminal 5

  • Spoke to those responsible for safeguarding the UK’s busiest airport, including Heathrow’s Metropolitan Police Force, Border Force, Immigration Officers, Specialist sniffer dog Handlers and other Heathrow colleagues

  • The Prince observed a demonstration by NATS, responsible for keeping the skies above Heathrow safe

  • His Royal Highness met with British Airways and Heathrow Airport colleagues over tea and cake

  • Royal visit coincides with the 10th anniversary of the opening of Heathrow Terminal 5

The Prince met a wide range of security personnel including, specialist Metropolitan Police officers, dog handling teams Border Force and Heathrow colleagues. He then took time to meet air traffic controllers who demonstrated their role in securing the skies.

As well as learning about how passengers and planes are kept safe, The Prince also heard more about how the UK Border Force work to ensure bio security measures are put in place to ensure the protection of the country’s biodiversity.

The trip coincided with the 10th anniversary of Terminal 5 and during the visit, His Royal Highness also boarded a British Airways 787 Dreamliner for a ‘tea party’ with the airline’s Chairman and Chief Executive Alex Cruz and colleagues.

IN PICTURES | HRH The Prince of Wales at Heathrow

During the reception His Royal Highness, a longstanding advocate of getting more young people into STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) also met apprentices and young people working in a wide variety of services throughout the airport.

Heathrow Chief Executive John Holland-Kaye said, “It was an honour and a privilege to be able to show His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales some of the great work being done here by our colleagues and partner agencies that keep our airport safe.”

Heathrow is the UK’s busiest airport with 78 million passengers travelling through last year. It is protected by leading intelligence services, a designated Police Force and dedicated security colleagues that work 365 days a year. It is a real boost for them to meet The Prince who thanked them all for their work.

John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow CEO

“Security will always be our priority and investing in people and technologies to ensure this, happens on a continual basis. Heathrow is the UK’s busiest airport with 78 million passengers travelling through last year. It is protected by leading intelligence services, a designated Police Force and dedicated security colleagues that work 365 days a year. It is a real boost for them to meet The Prince who thanked them all for their work.

Some of the most advanced passenger security and technology in the world can be found here at Heathrow and it was fantastic to show these to The Prince of Wales as we know he is the Royal Patron of Intelligence Services also.”

The visit and tour took place one decade on from the opening of Terminal 5 in 2008, by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

Heathrow town planner Suzie Opacic, 29, is set to take on the world and fly the flag for Great Britain in the World Women’s Snooker Championship in Malta this March. Ranked number 7 in the world, we caught up with Suzie to find out more about how she juggles working at the UK’s busiest airport with playing snooker on the world stage, as well as the rise of women’s game.

Suzie first picked up a cue when she 8-years-old after seeing the game on TV and by age 9 was playing on full size tables. A traditionally male dominated sport, Suzie found she had a competitive edge and a drive to win in competitions as a youngster that mainly pitted her against boys.

In 2006 Suzie became the World Ladies Junior Champion yet despite this was not allowed to play at some clubs around the country at the time due to historical “no women” rules. Since then, the atmosphere has changed, the circuit attracts more funding and publicity, and the game is on the rise as a result.

These days Suzie is not only putting in hours of snooker practice to compete on the women’s world circuit, but also working hard on the town planning elements of Heathrow’s high-profile expansion project.

In recognition of her incredible talent, Heathrow is providing sponsorship for Suzie to attend the Women’s World Championships this March.

What is your favourite part of working at Heathrow?

Suzie: As a town planner you can’t get much bigger or more complex than an infrastructure scheme that involves building a new runway and expanding one of the world’s busiest airports. It’s exciting to come into work each day knowing you’re having an influence on a scheme that will have a lasting legacy for years to come, both at a local level and nationally.

What are the biggest challenges you face with balancing your career and snooker?

For me the biggest challenge is time, as it’s a fine balance to strike between work and managing to find the time to practice. Heathrow has been really good at allowing me the time off to attend competitions where required and I do love the challenge of balancing a career I’m passionate about, with the game I love. Only a handful of women on the world circuit are able to play full-time and that does provide an even greater challenge for me though in terms of matching them in competition.

How has women’s snooker changed since you began your career?

The women’s circuit previously faced quite a few obstacles with raising its profile and funding – luckily there’s a real drive now by World Snooker to increase participation, inclusivity and diversity in the game. This does seem to be incentivising more women to play which is in turn increasing standards.If the current bid for snooker to be included in the Olympics is successful I believe this will help things even more.

What is your biggest highlight from your snooker career to date?

My biggest highlight was becoming World Ladies Junior Champion in 2006. It was my first World ladies event and I had entered on bit of a whim. I’d only started taking snooker a bit more seriously that year, when I was 17, largely because I could drive myself to the club to practice. 

My ranking peak was 5th, and I had some pleasing results last season including semi-finals of the World Ladies 10 reds and coming runner up in the World Doubles – beating the World No1 on route to the final.

What advice would you give to other people wanting to get into snooker?

Just give it a go! There are a lot of local clubs and leagues, with divisions to suit players of all standards. Being in a snooker team is also a really great social activity, despite it being an ‘individual sport’.

For kids, there are a lot more children-friendly snooker clubs that hold organised junior sessions with players from 5 upwards welcome – provided they can just about reach the table of course.

And, what advice would you give to someone wanting to work at Heathrow?

Just like the snooker, I’d say go for it! There are so many different career opportunities available at Heathrow and it’s a great and varied place to work. With the Heathrow expansion project now in the planning phase there are going to be even more opportunities to be involved with one of the most exciting infrastructure schemes in the UK.

Good luck from all of us at Heathrow!

Heathrow Expansion Director Emma Gilthorpe has wished Suzie good luck ahead of the World Championships.

We’re proud to be supporting Suzie as she takes on the world at the World Women’s Snooker Championship and from all of us at Heathrow we wish her the best of luck for the competition. Suzie is not only a terrific Heathrow colleague who lives our values and is working hard on one of the biggest infrastructure projects in the UK’s history, but also someone who is doing great things to raise the profile of women’s sport.

Emma Gilthorpe, Heathrow Expansion Executive Director

“We’re proud to be supporting Suzie as she takes on the world at the World Women’s Snooker Championship and from all of us at Heathrow we wish her the best of luck for the competition,” Emma Gilthorpe said.

“Suzie is not only a terrific Heathrow colleague who lives our values and is working hard on one of the biggest infrastructure projects in the UK’s history, but also someone who is doing great things to raise the profile of women’s sport.”

The WSF World Womens’s Snooker Championship runs from 14-24 March. 

Heathrow broke passenger and cargo February records with over 5.4 million passengers and 133,000 metric tonnes of cargo, last month.

The passenger record marked a 2.4% increase on last February, also a record month. Emerging markets were a key source behind the growth with South Asia up 12.7% and Latin America up 6.5%, boosted by airlines flying larger, fuller aircraft to Heathrow.

Domestic routes also grew strongly in February, up 3.6% as regional airline FlyBe carried an extra 17,000 passengers in the month.

The UK’s busiest port by value…gets even busier…

Trade through the UK’s biggest port by value jumped by 5% in February on the back of growth in North American and East Asian markets, securing Heathrow’s 19th consecutive month of record cargo growth.

The record cargo performance is increasing the strain on Britain’s global trading infrastructure and underscores the need to expand Heathrow at pace. New analysis released in February revealed that six of Britain’s key trading routes, accounting for nearly 20% of the trade through Heathrow are already full – including Shanghai, Tokyo Haneda, Delhi, Mumbai, Los Angeles and Dubai.

Heathrow also published its firstExport Climate Index this monthwhich tracks the health of the UK’s export economy. The new report revealed that UK exporters are in their strongest position since 2000 – a positive sign as the UK approaches the anniversary of article 50 being triggered.

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye welcomed the results and commented on capacity at the airport.

Today’s figures show that Heathrow is filling up fast – if we don’t act soon to expand our nation’s global gateway, the UK will only fall further behind our European rivals. A prosperous, global-trading Britain needs an expanded Heathrow now.

John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow CEO

“Today’s figures show that Heathrow is filling up fast – if we don’t act soon to expand our nation’s global gateway, the UK will only fall further behind our European rivals. A prosperous, global-trading Britain needs an expanded Heathrow now,” Holland-Kaye said.

Heathrow

By Heathrow

Published 12th March 2018