The UK government has today (26 February) introduced legislation to extend the airports slot allocation waiver, further supporting the aviation industry through the upcoming summer months.
Acting on calls for relief from the aviation sector, the legislation will support the industry through a period where air travel is likely to be lower than other years – protecting future connectivity and preventing airlines from operating high-cost, carbon-inefficient “ghost flights” to retain historic rights to slots.
Due to expire in Spring, the legislation to extend the waiver will come into force from the 26th March – two days before the start of the summer slot season. This will provide much needed flexibility, ensuring that airlines do not have to operate flights at least 80% of the time to retain their slots.
Transport secretary Grant Shapps said: “I want to restart international travel as soon as it is safe and the slots waiver is a critical part of making that happen.
“With airlines flying a smaller proportion of their usual schedules, the waiver means carriers can reserve their finances, reduce the need for environmentally damaging “ghost flights” and allow normal services to immediately restart when the pandemic allows.”