British Airways sends flights without food due to lack of security staff at its Heathrow hub

British Airways is forced to operate some flights without any food and the airline blames a severe shortage of security staff at its Heathrow hub for its catering problems.

Food rationing affected short-haul services across Europe on Monday, but British Airways said passengers on affected flights had been notified in time so they could arrange their own catering for their journeys.

The problem, the airline says, is not due to a staff shortage in its catering department, but rather a lack of security staff at Heathrow Airport which is delaying food truck deliveries to the side. from the plane.

As with most airports, catering supplies at Heathrow are prepared outside the secure area of ​​the airport and then taken ‘airside’ through a security checkpoint. Food trucks are normally sealed and do not need to be searched, but drivers and caterers must be screened like any other passenger or staff.

However, it would appear that Heathrow is diverting security staff from these staff checkpoints in order to reduce the massive queues that plague the airport’s passenger security screening areas.

As a result, food trucks are left idling and there is no guarantee that food and other provisions will arrive on flights on time.

A British Airways spokesperson told us that on Monday some flights departed without catering and business class passengers were offered a voucher to buy something to eat at the airport.

Hopefully the problem has been limited to one day, but Heathrow is still diverting security staff to the passenger search lanes so catering incidents can be a regular feature of the summer. Similar issues have hampered Lufthansa’s summer operations in recent weeks.

Heathrow says it is confident it will soon have as many trained and available security guards as before the pandemic.

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Mateusz Maszczynski


Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the Middle East’s most important airline and flew throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centered stories. Always on the cutting edge, Matt’s knowledge, analysis and news coverage are often used by some of the biggest names in journalism.

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