Heathrow opens T4 plane-spotting deck

London Heathrow has opened a new plane-spotting observation deck at Terminal 4.

The “View Heathrow” area marks the end of a five-year absence of any aircraft-viewing platform at the airport.

The old Terminal 2 had a plane-spotting platform before it was demolished in 2009 to make way for the new Queen’s Terminal, which opens in June (see news, June 2013).

Heathrow T4 viewing platform

Terminal 4’s new 270-degree observation deck is located between gates 15 and 16 and was converted from a former airline lounge. It is open to all T4 passengers during normal operating hours.

It has a view of the southern runway, the control tower and British Airways’ Concorde.

Fixed ipads on the platform show live flight radars, so that passengers can identify the aircraft movements in front of them, and binoculars to get a better view.

Kathryn Leahy, director of Terminal 4, said: “We are proud to be opening this viewing facility for passengers. We know that many travellers enjoy plane spotting and we are pleased to be able to provide them with the opportunity to do so once again.”

Last week, Star Alliance’s chief executive told Business Traveller that passengers travelling through the new Terminal 2 will encounter a “completely different” customer experience (see news, February 20).


Graham Smith

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  • Is this an airside facility or a landside one, because it sounds like the former and if so isn’t quite a like-for-like replacement of the old facility which anyone (including non-travellers) could enjoy.

  • Nice idea and I give Heathrow a big pat on the back, but it’s of absolutely no use to anyone unless they are flying out of T4!

    Come on Heathrow, do something for everybody just like FRA, ZRH, ORY, HAJ, DUS, HND, NRT, KIX, HKG, PEK, FLL and countless others have done.

  • Lets have a viewing area as good as the old Queens Building somewhere at LHR for all to use. I wouldn’t begrudge an entrance fee of £5.00.

  • It’s a start. First time for ages that anyone from Heathrow has admitted to being “delighted” to welcome plane spotters.

  • Come on ….should be open to all , I remember visiting the airport a long long time ago in 1959! and the facility now is less than we had as simple visitors way back then. Dave Peace

  • I miss the old Queens Building viewing area, as a child many a Sunday was spent there watching the aircraft & listening to the announcements made. A lot of European airports have great facilities & turn it into a real family day out which is what Amsterdam has done.

    The old Queens building used to have a great tiered restaurant where you could sit & watch the aircraft over a great lunch & was open to all general public as well as the roof too. This announcement is not really new news, this plane viewing area used to be part of what was the lounge for T4 run by KLM Holideck….

    So come on BAA lets open up a new viewing deck at Heathrow for the general public to use, it will be a great revenue earner & perhaps get some of today’s children away from their computer games & cell phones for a few hours!

  • It’s a passengers viewing area only;what about the true spotters like me?

    I don’t see any families visiting like up here in Manchester.

    Pull your finger out LHR.

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