Heathrow Terminal 2 - what to expect from the new terminal

Heathrow Terminal 2: what to expect from the new terminal

On 4 June 2014, Heathrow's new Terminal 2 - AKA the Queen's Terminal - opens for business. The £2.5 billion terminal is one of the largest privately funded construction projects in the UK. More than 140 UK businesses have been involved in its construction and it is supporting more than 35,000 jobs. Following more than 180 trials and tests involving more than 14,000 people (including a Wexas staff member), it is now on the verge of being "passenger ready".

For those who remember Heathrow's old Terminal 2, which was demolished three and a half years ago, the Queen's Terminal is a very different experience.

The new terminal was built with sustainability in mind. It has one of the largest biomass boilers in the UK, saving 13,000 tonnes of CO2 per year. It also has a water efficiency plan to reduce water consumption by up to 30% and 10-metre high windows to maximise natural light and reduce the need for artificial lighting

The new T2 will be home to Heathrow's 23 Star Alliance carriers, bringing them together under the same roof for the first time in the airport's history. The alliance accounts for just over 20 per cent of Heathrow's traffic and there will now be shorter connecting times between member airlines. T2 will also be home to Aer Lingus, which has interline and codeshare partnerships with many of the Star Alliance carriers, as well as Virgin Atlantic Little Red and Germanwings.

T2's shopping experience will be impressive too. John Lewis is investing £1 million in a 3,600 sq ft shop at the airport, including the best of home, fashion, gift and seasonal ranges.

Cath Kidston, Bottega Veneta and Michael Kors are among the other big retail hitters who will open in T2. There will also be Heston Blumenthal's latest outpost, The Perfectionists' Café, to celebrate some of Britain's favourite dishes and The Gorgeous Kitchen, a new restaurant created by four local female chefs.

THE Wexas INTELLIGENCE:

Much in the same way that a revitalised St Pancras has revolutionised the terminal experience for international rail passengers, Heathrow's new Terminal 2 looks set to redefine the airport experience.

The bringing together of the carriers of the Star Alliance, such as Lufthansa and United Airlines, under a single roof will be very welcome and will make travelling through Heathrow far better for transfer passengers.

British business travellers will also benefit from the new terminal and not only from the excellent retail and food options available.

The terminal will have next-generation check-in desks which do away with the high barriers and replace them with open-style desks where an agent comes out to greet the passenger, and stands with them at the desk while carrying out all the required checks and procedures. There's also a scanner which lets passengers open their booking direct from their mobile.

Lufthansa's premium passengers will also be able to make use of the airline's largest lounge facility outside Germany, measuring 1,600 square metres and with space for 350. There will also be dedicated business lounges for United and Air Canada's top passengers.

Travelling through Heathrow is about to get a whole lot better.

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