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Heathrow is among the worlds busiest airports, with traffic mostly (entirely?) from airliners. Are private/business jets (e.g. Gulfstream G650 or Cessna Citation X) allowed to land at Heathrow?

If so, what are the landing fees and what criteria do they use in charging them?

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    $\begingroup$ Please tell me you're not typing this from 40,000 feet above London. $\endgroup$ – Richard Mar 14 '18 at 22:33
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    $\begingroup$ im not typing this from 40000 feet above London $\endgroup$ – securitydude5 Apr 25 '18 at 19:18
  • $\begingroup$ Please tell me you're not typing this from Heathrow's holding cells. $\endgroup$ – Richard Apr 25 '18 at 19:19
  • $\begingroup$ Please tell me you not Airport intelligence cause you'll foil my escape plans $\endgroup$ – securitydude5 Apr 25 '18 at 19:22
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The answer appears to be "yes", but unless you're transferring directly from the private jet to/from an international flight in/out of Heathrow, it's a poor choice. Fees are high and delays are common.

With no fewer than 13 other airports to choose from, chances are that one of the others will be a better choice. Luton and Farnborough are the most popular choices for private jets.

Reference:

PrivateFly: Inside London Airports - Private Jet & Helicopter charter

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    $\begingroup$ Thirteen if you're prepared to call places like Oxford, Farnborough, Stansted, Southend and Cranfield "London"... $\endgroup$ – David Richerby Mar 13 '18 at 21:13
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    $\begingroup$ Seems like if I was the kinda guy with a private jet I wouldn't be worried about a few grand on landing fees... $\endgroup$ – corsiKa Mar 14 '18 at 2:01
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    $\begingroup$ @corsiKa: Seems to me that if you didn't care about cost, London City Airport would probably be your first choice. Probably a few people who have jets but still care at least a little about costs though... $\endgroup$ – Jerry Coffin Mar 14 '18 at 2:53
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    $\begingroup$ @JerryCoffin I'll keep that in mind. Step 1) Become a billionaire. $\endgroup$ – corsiKa Mar 14 '18 at 3:28
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    $\begingroup$ @corsiKa In general the people who are billionaires tend to care at least a little about costs. It's usually a part of how they became billionaires. $\endgroup$ – DRF Mar 14 '18 at 8:09
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Yes, Private jets can land at Heathrow.

Charging is based, like many airports, on aircraft weight in the first instance, but also incurred are handling charges, parking charges, and extra charges for noise/emissions rating, as well as a different price for night landings. Many airports use similar pricing structures.

Heathrow publishes their landing charges, so you can go and calculate the total cost for next time you ask your Pilot to land you there!

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    $\begingroup$ An interesting paragraph: 3.2 Parking is free between the hours of 2200 and 0559 UTC (GMT) from 1 April to 31 March. Do I take that to mean that they do charge for overnight parking the evening of March 31 only? If it's year-round, it's an odd way to phrase it. I'm not sure how to parse it otherwise. $\endgroup$ – Tristan Mar 14 '18 at 14:44
  • $\begingroup$ @Tristan looks like it's a copy paste edit from the note about night landing charges $\endgroup$ – ratchet freak Mar 14 '18 at 15:16
  • $\begingroup$ @Tristan I was about to query this - it makes no sense! $\endgroup$ – John M Mar 14 '18 at 15:35
  • $\begingroup$ @Tristan It's so they can keep the provision and wording in place to ease changes in the future. That way, one, the numbering remains the same, and two, they can change just a simple number as an adjustment to a discount, rather than instituting a new fee. $\endgroup$ – user71659 Mar 14 '18 at 23:31
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The short answer is :

You could. But GA traffic is heavily discouraged both in terms of fees and policies.

Longer answer:

Most of the time, the only private jets you'll find at Heathrow are those operated by heads of state and their respective governments who, for whatever reason, feel they absolutely must land at Heathrow.

Most private private jet traffic that needs to be as close as humanly possible to Central London goes to RAF Northolt. A military airfield that's (pretty much) the same distance to Central London as Heathrow. But its far less busy than Heathrow (and probably cheaper too, I don't know the prices off the top of my head).

The added benefit of Northolt is that security is (obviously) MUCH higher than Heathrow. Which makes the job of keeping your VIPs safe (and the paparazzi and unwashed masses away from them) much easier.

Military needs obviously take priority at RAF Northolt in terms of availability, but most of the time its not a problem. The RAF do most of their stuff from bases outside London out of respect for the NIMBYs.

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    $\begingroup$ RAF Northolt is also where the No. 32 (The Royal) Squadron is based, which provides air transport for the Royal Family and the UK Government, so its security is not just higher by virtue of being a military airbase, but a military airbase that specialises in air traffic of VIPs. $\endgroup$ – Myles Mar 14 '18 at 18:12
  • $\begingroup$ @Myles Fair enough comment, but without going into detail, the sort of security elements I was thinking of in this context would be common to all airbases. Without going into details on a public forum, the security handling and general experience of private VIPs at Northolt is somewhat different to the treatment given to Windsors and UK Government. What private VIPs experience would be experienced at any airbase. $\endgroup$ – Little Code Mar 14 '18 at 19:05
  • $\begingroup$ Wouldn't VIPs prefer to use LCY as its the closest? $\endgroup$ – JonathanReez Mar 15 '18 at 0:50
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    $\begingroup$ @JonathanReez Closest to where? LCY is closest to the City in east London, but the seats of government around Westminster, Whitehall and Buckingham Palace are further west and the driving time to LCY or Northolt is about the same. $\endgroup$ – Mike Scott Mar 15 '18 at 7:26
  • $\begingroup$ @MikeScott With all due respect your comment gives the impression you've never been to LCY. If you had, you would probably see why they would be discouraging of GA traffic. You don't need to be a pilot to see why. That aside, there is also the little technical question of the approach which most private jets would be ill suited to. $\endgroup$ – Little Code Mar 15 '18 at 11:08

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