Additional security checkpoint set to enhance Star Alliance’s Heathrow T2 experience

Star Alliance hopes a new security area within Terminal 2B at London’s Heathrow Airport will enhance passenger transfers between member airlines at the UK hub. Working with the airport operator on stand allocations the new checkpoint will allow many connecting passengers to pass through security within the same concourse, providing a more convenient and faster travel experience.


Summary:

  • Star Alliance hopes new security checkpoint within Terminal 2B at London Heathrow and new stand allocations will reduce transfer times and enhance customer experience for passengers.
  • 24 Star Alliance airlines fly from London Heathrow’s Terminal 2 providing over 117 flights per day to 44 destinations in 27 countries.
  • Star Alliance accounts of 18.4% of the weekly seats at London Heathrow, a major hub for rival alliance grouping oneworld.
  • The alliance has seen its Heathrow offering reduce this decade following the closure of bmi british midland, but it remains sixth largest European point in terms of group capacity.

The global airline grouping is the anchor tenant of the newly refurbished Terminal 2 at London Heathrow, known as The Queen’s Terminal. It’s vice president customer experience, Christian Draeger confirms that the alliance is already looking at the ways it can develop further synergies between its members alongside the obvious benefits sharing the terminal have already delivered. “It is our objective to provide passengers with the best possible Alliance travel experience at Heathrow Terminal 2. A special emphasis is on optimising the transfer experience,” he says.

It is over a decade since Star Alliance officials opened discussions with Heathrow to obtain infrastructure to support the grouping’s membership and common business goals. The opening of the new Terminal 2 in June 2014 was a key milestone in this process allowing all 24 Star Alliance airlines serving the airport to share the modern facility.

Having all member carriers located in the same terminal has allowed the Star Alliance to reduce the minimum connecting time between flights of its member airlines and this additional inspection point will make transfers more convenient. Its stand allocation talks with the airport means that on popular connection options inbound aircraft can be allocated a stand close to the departing aircraft meaning passengers will only need to walk a short distance for their next flight.

CHART – The Star Alliance member airlines account for a 18.5% share of the system capacity at London Heathrow, a notable inventory considering it is a major hub for its rival oneworld allianceSource: CAPA – Centre for Aviation and OAG (data: w/c 20-Nov-2017)

The Star Alliance carriers serving Heathrow comprise Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air India, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Avianca, Brussels Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EgyptAir, Ethiopian Airlines, Eva Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Swiss, TAP Air Portugal, Turkish Airlines, Thai Airways International and United Airlines. Together they operate over 117 flights per day to 44 destinations in 27 countries from the London airport, providing access into a wider alliance network of more than 18,400 daily flights to 1,330 airports in 191 countries.

CHART – Star Alliance members have increased their presence at London Heathrow since 2014, but its 18.8% annual share of system seats is down significantly on the 25%+ levels recorded at the start of the decadeSource: The Blue Swan Daily and OAG

The Blue Swan Daily analysis of historical OAG flight schedules for the past ten years highlights Star Alliance’s member operations at London Heathrow. This shows that the alliance’s penetration has reduced over this period, mainly due to the closure of bmi british midland and its amalgamation into British Airways after International Airlines Group (IAG) acquired the UK airline from Lufthansa. However, after hitting a ten year low in 2014, the alliance’s system seats at London Heathrow has grown in each of the subsequent three years, growing its inventory 6.7% during the period.

However, London Heathrow remains the sixth largest Star Alliance operation across Europe behind the hub operations of Lufthansa at Frankfurt and Munich in Germany, Turkish Airlines in Istanbul, Swiss out of Zurich in Switzerland and Austrian Airlines at Vienna. It is the largest Star Alliance network at a European airport where it does not have a dominant base airline.

CHART – London Heathrow is the largest Star Alliance European airport where it does not have a based carrier operation and sixth largest in terms of member departure seatsSource: The Blue Swan Daily and OAG