Due to high demand and staff shortages, British Airways has temporarily halted sales of short-haul flights out of London Heathrow Airport in response to the airport’s request to reduce bookings.
The domestic UK and European flights departing from Heathrow Airport will be subject to a limit on ticket sales until Monday when the restrictions will be lifted. Only flights lasting less than three hours will be affected by the airline’s new policy, which excludes places like Manchester, Paris, Berlin, Madrid, and Zurich.
However, short-haul flights to the airport can still be booked by travellers.
After Heathrow set a daily departure passenger limit of 100,000 until September 11th, BA said it would take action. As a result of the airport’s decision to ask airlines to cease selling tickets and reduce flights, there has been a backlash against the airport.
Although passenger traffic at Heathrow and other European airports has increased following two years of pandemic travel restrictions, airports and airlines have not been able to keep up because they laid off thousands of employees during the depths of COVID-19.
Some Heathrow services have been restricted in order to offer existing customers rebooking choices because of Heathrow’s request to limit new bookings and the continued problems confronting the aviation sector, British Airways said in a press statement.
Heathrow has been the scene of travel mayhem this summer, with long queues for security and technical problems with the baggage system that led to massive heaps of lost and unclaimed bags.
Last month, the airport issued an apology to travellers who had to reschedule or cancel their flights due to poor service.
Initially, BA cancelled 10,300 flights until October in response to Heathrow’s restriction on passengers.
The daily passenger limit at Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport has also been extended until October.