The airline moves would enable the early closure of Terminal 1 which would allow all passengers to travel through new or refurbished terminals from 2016.
The new terminal marks the latest phase of an £11 billion transformation of Heathrow. 20 million passengers a year will eventually use the new terminal, which consists of a main terminal building plus satellite building and aircraft parking stands. The £2.5billion development is the largest privately-funded construction project in the UK. 35,000 people will have worked on the terminal over the lifetime of the project.
The decision on which airlines will operate from the terminal follows a nine-month consultation with airlines which was prompted by the sale of bmi to IAG, the owner of British Airways.
The STAR Alliance includes Aegean Air, Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airways, Asiana Airlines, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EgyptAir, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa German Airlines, SAS Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Swiss International Airlines, TAP Air Portugal, Thai Airways International, Turkish Airlines, United Airlines, and US Airways.
From summer 2013, Virgin Atlantic will operate domestic routes from Heathrow to Manchester, Edinburgh and Aberdeen following the award of ‘remedy slots’ as a result of IAG’s acquisition of bmi. These flights will initially operate from Terminal 1 (where bmi was based) before moving to the new Terminal 2 in 2014. Virgin Atlantic’s international flights will continue to operate from Terminal 3.
Heathrow is still in discussion with those airlines which currently operate from Terminal 1 and are not members of the Star Alliance (El Al, Icelandair, Cyprus Airways, Germanwings and Transaero), about their future location when Terminal 1 closes.