Page last updated at 20:07 GMT, Saturday, 29 March 2008

Your experiences of Terminal 5

Passengers and staff caught up in the problems at Heathrow's troubled Terminal 5 have been sending in their comments to the BBC News website.


I arrived on Saturday morning from Johannesburg, on only the second or third flight of the day. The guidance system for parking the aircraft delayed going on stand by five minutes, failure to operate the jetty 10 minutes, and luggage 90 minutes.

On the flight, the crew said they had no information about the situation at T5, but the ground crew would inform us. Didn't happen. In the baggage hall, the BA staff said that BAA would not let them make announcements, they seemed just as surprised when the bags materialised.

Only one lift working to the car park. Amazing. Is there a stronger description than fiasco, as that word doesn't do it justice?
Roger, London

We boarded a flight from Montreal to Istanbul via Heathrow on Thursday night at 8.45pm. The first time we heard of any issue was in the BA lounge as we awaited our connection (newspaper headline). That in itself is very poor communication.

As we have two children, we bypassed a large crowd of people near the escalators, which had broken down, in order to get to the security check-in area. This area was a complete shambles as people who worked there were not familiar with the process. The belt itself is not practical as there are gaps in between the rollers and small items (such as my glasses) fell through. The BAA employee had to crawl on hands and knees to retrieve them and then proceeded to share with my children some expletives.

Upon landing in Istanbul, only two of our nine pieces of checked-in luggage appeared. T5 should never have been opened prematurely as this is a poor reflection on British competency.
Roger Rees, Istanbul, Turkey

Terminal 5 is in terrible condition, for a new building - it is dirty and nothing works (escalators etc). To top it off, it is like a building site with all the contractor staff sitting in front of the TV screens moaning about their job all day. An absolute shambles!
Ben Cathcart, Aberdeen

Just arrived in Geneva without my luggage. Captain sounded like he was despairing of the situation as he had to leave nearly two hours late. Everyone's very cheerful (apart from the usual middle-want-to-be-upper class twits). Apparently my luggage will be delivered to my hotel this evening. I couldn't really pay for a service direct to my room without waiting by carousel, carrying my luggage etc, so not at all unhappy. Knowing there was a problem, I took a suit and spare clothes in my hand luggage with the essentials, so it's no big deal.
David Pearson, Southampton

This is nowhere near as bad as it is being portrayed. Looking at the departures board in the stunning new terminal you realise how few flights have actually been cancelled out of such a large network! I arrived on a flight from Boson on Saturday and found the whole experience to be very enjoyable and our luggage only arrived about 15 minutes late.
Connor Gower, Deal, Kent

Two lots of lost luggage on one trip, an hour and a half flight back from Germany, five and a half hours to get through Heathrow. Sitting there waiting to get off the damn plane for 45 minutes, watching the baggage handlers toss bags into puddles on the runway, then just leave them there in the rain while they shelter under the wing for 20 minutes until the baggage trolleys arrive.
Bill Morrison-Bates, Swindon

We have been stuck on the plane for hours, they keep taking luggage off and on because some bags were not screened properly and so they have now decided to take off without luggage. This is quite serious for people. Everyone is a bit disgusted, some people have been crying. The whole Terminal 5 experience has been appalling. I won't be flying BA again.
Elizabeth, Oxfordshire, UK

I am a manager at BA and I worked for nine hours (after a day in the office) on Friday at T5. I will be there again at the weekend, along with many others. I agree with our CEO that this wasn't and isn't our finest hour, but I wish we could all pull together and stop undermining the professional spirit of those who are trying hard to deliver the service our customers deserve.
Sandra, London, UK

I am flying to Heathrow on Sunday evening and have decided not to take hold luggage for risk of losing this when I arrive at Heathrow's Terminal 5. I think it may have been more sensible for BA to move into T5 gradually. Yesterday's South China Morning Post carried the story of T5's problems for all to see. I felt ashamed to be British.
Bob Hawkins, Hong Kong

I will never ever fly in to Heathrow again: rude staff, chaos and confusion abound. Not a good first impression for overseas visitors and depressing for regular travellers.
Ian, Connecticut, USA

Having seen passengers openly breaking down and crying, I can only say I am ashamed to be British
Dean Dunn

Having to spend the night in Paris due to the incompetence at T5 - my flight to Heathrow was cancelled. Spent 3 hours queuing in Charles De Gaulle. The service from BA staff here has been non-existent. I gave up waiting for them to sort something out and have made my own hotel booking for tonight, together with a return ticket to the UK via Eurostar tomorrow - I'm not risking another BA cock-up tomorrow. What a shambles - but hardly surprising considering BA were involved.
Jon, Paris

My daughter has travelled home to Newcastle after visiting me in New Zealand, setting off on Weds afternoon - it's now Friday afternoon here and she is still not home. BA have had to put her in a hotel in London (eventually, after a lot of heartache and tears) as there is no flight to Newcastle after travelling from the other side of the world. What are they doing??
Peter Rasul, Wellington, New Zealand

Myself and my girlfriend left T5 on Thursday after a 1.5 hour delay. We have arrived in Miami minus our bags and have had to spend circa 150 on essentials from late night Walmart. Not impressed at all as no-one seems to know when/if we will get our bags back!
Mark Nicholls, Surbiton, UK



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