London's Heathrow Airport told to cut airline fees

STORY: London’s Heathrow Airport has been told it’s overcharging airlines.

Britain’s aviation regulator has ordered the hub to cut the fees starting in 2024.

It’s a major victory for airlines, who have long said they were paying too much.

That’s a big boost to carriers with a major presence at the airport, such as British Airways and Virgin Atlantic.

They will now see a significant drop in the cost of operating there.

Though both said the ruling didn’t go far enough, and they would consider their options.

Meanwhile, it’s a big blow for the airport, and its owners.

They include Spanish group Ferrovial and the Qatar Investment Authority.

Heathrow said the ruling made no sense at a time when regulators should be incentivising investment in its facilities.

It says it needs higher fees to pay for things like new scanners and a modern baggage handling system at one terminal.

The company has six weeks in which to lodge an appeal.

Aviation watchdogs say the bounceback in air travel means Heathrow can generate more revenue without higher fees.

Passenger numbers at the hub are expected to recover to about 90% of pre-health crisis levels this year.