T2 hopes to make experience better
Heathrow’s new Terminal 2 opens this week, but let’s face it – air travel is no longer the glamorous experience of the 1950s. The brochure for the re-opening even has to use a 1950s photo of Maria Callas – today’s flying celebs look pretty awful in comparison.
But one good thing is you can save money by shopping for essentials at the
Airport, particularly if you fly out of the new Terminal 2.
The new terminal has been years in the planning – hopefully making the airport experience better, from more coordinated assistance, to saving money on buying our essentials.
And essentials to me cover skincare – which I need for my drug-ridden skin, thank you very much, and woe betide any supercilious doctor who sneers! Remind them that French cancer patients have a better survival record, and they take skin care very seriously.
So buying essentials costs us money, but you will find many well-known brands on sale here, at cheaper prices.
Or if you use Clarins, they are here too – and make a big effort to help men with their skin problems.
Other well-known and helpful firms are the Estee Lauder companis, such as Clinique.
And experts say that you can expect discounts from around 20% upwards on high street prices, all because of deals negotiated by World Duty Free.
Duty free, thanks to Brussels and EU regulations, was abolished in 1998, even though it was such a popular perk. By that time airports were making so much money from retail that it had impacted on the cost of flying – bringing down costs. So the BAA, who ran Heathrow at that time, decided to maintain the savings by introducing the concept of introduced ‘duty paid’ – paying VAT and/or Tax for passengers on their behalf (by measures such as suppliers taking this out of mark-ups, etc). Now retail turnover is so large that this can sometimes be as much as 60%, although there are a few firms who decided not to come into the scheme.
The world’s first “duty free” shop was established in Ireland. The country had a great part to play in the history of flying, as it was here that Alcock and Brown landed on 15th June 1919, having made the first transatlantic crossing by plane.
Later, along came Dr Brendan O’Regan, Catering Comptroller at Rineanna Airport (now Shannon International Airport). Dr. O’Regan established the world’s first Duty-Free shops at Shannon Airport in 1947. At that time, transatlantic flights had to stop to refuel on their way across the ocean, and every country along the way wanted to attract the business. O’Reagan had the idea of attracting them to do this at his airport by offering shopping for Irish goods such as Waterford crystal, whilst the passengers were having to dis-embark during the time the planes re-fueled. Then someone discovered that technically these shoppers wouldn’t have to pay purchase tax, and Duty Free shopping was born.
I don’t go through airports for their food – but there are two excellent ideas here:
1. If you are travelling on budget – or even scheduled airline – and can’t face the ‘plastic’ food they serve, you can pick up a carry-on packet, box or hamper – full of goodies YOU like to eat, and have a gourmet meal on board.
And Four TV Gorgeous Chefs (girls) have collaborated to provide in The Gorgeous Kitchen. Contains the usual international fast foods, BUT they will be serving Afternoon Tea with Scones every afternoon. I sampled these at the launch, and they were as good as home-made; light and delicious. And the girls know their stuff – they could even tell me the difference between Cornish (jam first) and Devon (cream first) Scones
Make use of disability services, such as transporting you and your luggage through the miles of Immigration queues. This is organised through the airline you are flying by, and is FREE. Book this when you book your ticket.