Heathrow Airport has cancelled more than 60 flights on Monday affecting thousands of passengers and warned more flights could be cancelled.
Heathrow cancelled 61 out of around 1,100 scheduled flights amid concerns of how many passengers they could safely accommodate amid widespread staff shortages in the rebound after the pandemic.
Virgin Atlantic, Air France and British Airways who are at Terminals 3 and 5 were those affected.
A Heathrow spokesman said, “We are expecting higher passenger numbers in Terminals 3 and 5 today than the airport currently has capacity to serve, and so to maintain a safe operation we have asked some airlines in Terminals 3 and 5 to remove a combined total of 61 flights from the schedule.
“We apologise for the impact to travel plans and we are working closely with airlines to get affected passengers rebooked onto other flights.”
Willie Walsh, the former boss of British Airways who now leads the International Air Transport Association slammed Heathrow as the airport “should have prepared better.
Walsh told the BBC, “Heathrow definitely should have prepared better.
“They were arguing that airlines should be operating at least 80% of their slots through the summer period.
“They clearly did not provide sufficient resources to deal with that level of activity, so you would have to be critical of Heathrow.”
The Heathrow chief executive, John Holland-Kaye, warned they could ask more airlines to cancel even more flights which will create further chaos for holidaymakers this summer.
Holland-Kaye said, “We will review the schedule changes that airlines have submitted in response to the government’s requirement to minimise disruption for passengers this summer and will ask them to take further action if necessary.
“We want everyone who is travelling through Heathrow to be confident that they will have a safe and reliable journey.”