News story

Government puts consumers at heart of the aviation industry

Next steps to make UK aviation a world leader.

Passengers at an airport.
  • greater focus on passengers, to improve their experience throughout their journey
  • creating an ever cleaner, greener sector which prioritises sustainable growth
  • building a global and connected Britain with more trade opportunities

The government will today (7 April 2018) set out its plans to make the country’s aviation sector world-leading in prioritising passengers, fostering sustainable growth and promoting trade.

The aviation strategy next steps document outlines proposals which will build on the aviation industry’s work to improve the flying experience for passengers at every stage of their journey.

This will include new measures to help passengers make a more informed choice about their flight including providing more transparency on additional costs.

The document also outlines how the government will work with industry to ensure all passengers have a dignified and comfortable travelling experience, including ways to improve accessibility at airports and on aircraft and tackling the issue of disruptive passengers.

Work will be carried out to improve the compensation scheme for consumers, ensuring passengers are properly informed about their rights to claim when things go wrong and exploring greater powers to enforce regulations.

Baroness Sugg, Aviation Minister, said:

Our world class aviation industry has a proud and accomplished history, from pioneering the first international routes to championing consumer choice.

Working with industry, we want to improve the flying experience from booking to arrival, ensuring passengers are truly at the heart of the aviation sector.

This demonstrates our commitment to creating a transport system which works for passengers as we build a Britain fit for the future.

How will a new aviation strategy help the industry and the UK?

The government is also providing more details about its ambitious plan to make Britain’s aviation sector the world’s greenest, including proposals to tackle issues around noise, greenhouse gas emissions and airspace congestion.

Environmental proposals include the introduction of new noise targets, strengthened noise controls at airports and improved compensation for people living near airports. The government will work with industry to reduce the usage of single use plastics and improve recycling rates.

The government will also explore measures with industry to support the use of quieter and more fuel efficient aircraft, as well as the emergence of electric and hybrid technology.

The ‘next steps’ document makes clear the government’s commitment to ensuring the aviation sector continues to grow.

The sector already contributes at least £22 billion to the UK economy each year and the strategy will examine what can be done to help it develop even further.

The strategy will examine the agreements UK has with other countries to operate flights, identify opportunities to improve connectivity and open up new routes for overseas investment.

Other proposals include reviewing the allocation of airport landing slots to ensure the process is fair, transparent and fosters a competitive marketplace which benefits consumers by offering more choice.

An initial call for evidence for the aviation strategy was launched in July of last year, receiving almost 380 responses. The proposals being outlined in the ‘next steps’ document will be consulted on further in the autumn, with the final strategy due for publication in early 2019.

Background

The aviation strategy is designed to achieve a safe, secure and sustainable aviation sector that meets the needs of consumers and of a global, outward-looking Britain. It will look to:

  • help the aviation industry work for its customers
  • ensure a safe and secure way to travel
  • build a global and connected Britain
  • encourage competitive markets
  • support growth while tackling environmental impacts
  • develop innovation, technology and skill

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Published 7 April 2018