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Heathrow Airport passengers down 88 per cent in July due to coronavirus

Heathrow Airport passengers down 88 per cent in July due to coronavirus

Heathrow Airport's passenger numbers fell by 88 per cent in July compared to the same time last year.

Over 860,000 passengers travelled through the London hub last month, which actually reflects an uplift compared to previous months.

This was largely thanks to the introduction of the "travel corridors" on 4 July, according to the airport, which meant that British holidaymakers could travel to selected European destinations without having to quarantine on their return.

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This was demonstrated by the fact that the majority of passengers – over 480,000 – were travelling to destinations within Europe.

However, the airport said 60 per cent of its network remains grounded due to the 14-day quarantine on arrival requirements, which it says is "preventing the UK from travelling to and trading with these countries".

Heathrow CEO, John Holland-Kaye, said: “Tens of thousands of jobs are being lost because Britain remains cut off from critical markets such as the US, Canada and Singapore.

"The government can save jobs by introducing testing to cut quarantine from higher risk countries, while keeping the public safe from a second wave of Covid.“

Holland-Kaye has recently suggested that some grounded routes could be safely opened up with the help of testing and a shorter quarantine.

It would mean a PCR test immediately on arrival, followed by either five or eight days of quarantine before a second test.

He told The Independent: “We think a double test is the way to go, where we test people on day one and then on day five or day eight.

“At day five, you’re picking up an 85 per cent confidence level that someone doesn’t have Covid, and day eight it is a 97 per cent confidence level.”

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