London Heathrow (LHR) Airport

London Heathrow LHR Airport Overview

London Heathrow International Airport LHR - is the United Kingdom's most prominent  - and the largest  Airport serving London  (the others are LGW, STN, LTN & LCY), and is one of the world’s busiest airports - presently only trumped by Beijing's PEK - handling more international passengers than any other airport in the world.  In June 2015, ACI Europe awarded LHR its  'Best Airport' accolade -  with the highest passenger satisfaction in the over 25-M passenger category.

LHR Airport is located near the southern end of the Borough of Hillingdon, about 12 nautical miles from Central London, England, U.K., and covers an area of over 12 square km. It is accessible:
  - via nearby motorway M4, and by four parallel tunnels under a runway connecting the M4 and A4 to Terminals 1 & 3.
  - via motorway M25 leading to Terminals 4 & 5, and
  - the A30 road to Terminal 4.
If using the Heathrow Airport Express to LHR Airport  note that trains depart from platforms 6 & 7 at London Paddington (for more information and timetable open:
  - heading to Terminals 1 or 3:  take any train, getting off at Heathrow Central - taking 15 mins.
  - heading to Terminal 4:  change at Heathrow Central and use the free transfer service by connecting trains, departing every 15 mins and taking 4 mins. to get there.
  - heading to Terminal 5:  board London-Heathrow train at Paddington to Heathrow Central and take any train thereafter to Terminal 5, an added 6-minutes.

With two extra-long runways and an annual passenger count of nearly 72 million, London Heathrow International Airport is primary hub for BMI, British Airways & Virgin Atlantic, and is served by a host domestic and international  airlines, offering countless destinations with connections worldwide. 

On-Airport hotels are within walking distance of Heathrow's passenger terminals. The hotel reservation center maintains desks in the arrivals area of all terminals and in the London Underground concourse between T1 & 3. (National Express runs a shuttle bus to nearby hotels.)
- Near Terminal 5 is the Sofitel London Heathrow Hotel with 2 restaurants & conference facilities;
  - near Terminal 4 is the Hilton London Heathrow Airport Hotel with 3 restraurants, business and fitness centers; and 
  - at Terminal 4 is the YOTEL - a capsule hotel with 32 cabins, bookable for a few hours or more.
  - The Renaissance Hotel completed its renovation project and reopend Feb. 4, 2016 with a 32,300 sq.ft conference & events space, new restaurant, bar & lounge and additional 61 bedrooms (totaling 710).
   - T4 is to get two new hotels:  The Crowne Plaza London hotel with 300 rooms and business facilities, and the Holiday Inn Express London with 450 rooms.  Both hotels are to be connected to T4 by an air bridge.

Passenger dropoff: follow 'Departures' signs; for T5, use either of the two lanes on the departures forecourt; for T1 to T4, use outside lane.
 - Due to recent security changes (you may be asked to open your bags for thorough search) it is advisable to arrive for check-in for European flights 2 hours, and long-haul and El Al flights three hours prior to scheduled departure.
 - Visa requirements for travelers from India:  Tourists, travelers on business & other eligible visitors from India will now be able to visit both the UK and Ireland (North & South Ireland) - moving freely between the two countries on a single visa.
 - Due to Heathrow /Emirates new partnership, members of their customer loyaly programs (Heathrow Rewards & Emirates Skywards) results in increased earning & redemption options.
 - 'AirPortr' concierge baggage service may be booked from any device are now available in Terminals 3 - 5.  It will deliver two bags (any size, weight) to/from any London destination at 30 pounds.

London Heathrow International has five passenger terminals - T1 through T5.

Present and future Airport Developments:  Regarding the  long-ongoing endeavor by Heathrow Airport for approval of its third runway and subsequent second phase of Terminal 2 construction:  The Government's decision on a Third Runway was delayed until at least summer 2016 and will come with severe restrictions -  leaving two other options on the table:  Extending existing runway at Heathrow, or adding a second runway at Gatwick Airport.  As to the T2 expansion, the winning bidders are at ready to start upon Government's favorable decision.
Meanwhile in May 2016 it was announed that Heathrow Airport pledged to meet conditions or its expansion plans - set out by the Airports Commission: As part of the expansion plan, it agreed that upon opening of the third runway - there will be no nighttime flights between 11pm & 5:30am.  An Education & Skills Taskforce will create future employees for UK infrastructure projects; Local communities will get compensation ; a Community Engagement Board & independent aviation noise authority will be established. Four UK-based architects will be used for the expansion.

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