Going to Heathrow? A few survival tips
HEATHROW Airport in London operates at 99 percent capacity, with 13,070 take-offs and landings each day. Since it can’t add capacity to ease demand during the Olympic Games in July, the airport authority aims to boost organisation on the ground. That means constructing a temporary terminal for the 10,500 Olympic athletes and their delegations, who will be diverted there the day after the closing ceremony, when 65 percent of Olympic Village tenants are expected to fly out with their pole vaults, bicycles and oars in tow. But there are shortcuts for spectators, too. People travelling with children should look for security areas equipped with wider, stroller-friendly lanes, staff members trained to work with less familiar fliers, indicated by child-oriented signage, including a rainbow over the metal detector. Travellers into central London are encouraged to take the Heathrow Express train rather than the Underground, which may be subject to congestion delays during the Games. Heathrow Express reaches central Paddington Station in 15 minutes, shaving 35 minutes off an equivalent journey via Tube. Of course, the efficient ride costs more, £19 versus roughly £5 for a walk-up. Airport administrators have rounded up 1,000 volunteers to help Travellers navigate the airport. Attired in pink uniforms, they should be easy to spot.