Will BA wow?

Hotel News - 21/02/2008

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As the opening date for the fifth terminal at Heathrow Airport approaches, both passengers and officials at British Airways have high hopes that the new terminal will improve the service offered by Britain’s flagship carrier.

BA’s record for flight delays and lost baggage is worse than any other airline operating out of Heathrow. Only a third of the airline’s flights take off on time and the number of bags lost by the airline each year is double that most airlines.

On March 27th, BA will move into Terminal 5 and take advantage of new space and new technology to solve its old problems. When the new terminal opens, 90 per cent of BA’s flights will operate from T5.

"Everybody will be wowed," one of BA's chiefs declared, "when they visit one of the busiest airports in the world and feel like they are visiting a five-star hotel."

T5 has been a long time in the making. Government approval for the terminal took nine years to secure, alone. Planning and construction took another seven. Many elements of the design that took so long to produce are in place in order to reduce passenger waiting times, expedite baggage handling and keep planes moving on time. After all the time put into the project, Britons have high hopes for the result, but can BA deliver?

When opened, the terminal will be linked to central London by fast and frequent public transportation. The terminal has 4,000 underground parking spaces available.

Accor Sofitel will operate one of the hotels linked to the terminal. The 600-room multi million pound hotel should be ready to open when the terminal does.

Travelodge also offers a hotel at Terminal 5 with 154 parking spaces available.

In 2010, Hilton hotels will open a 350-room hotel near the terminal, offering high quality hotel rooms near the new terminal.

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