Updated August 13, 2012

UK NATS has advised that they will terminate the 2012 Olympic Air Traffic Incident Crisis Communications Cell (ATICCC) on Aug. 14 – one day prior to the planned removal of the Olympics airspace restrictions

Civil aviation authorities in the United Kingdom are expecting a significant increase in aircraft movements during both the 2012 London Olympics and also the Paralympic Games. The Olympic Games are scheduled for July 27 to August 12 and the Paralympic Games will be held August 29 to September 9. Operators can expect airspace restrictions and slot restrictions at certain airports while the games are in progress.

Current plans call for takeoff and departure slots to be allocated at many airports, with slots at peak times expected to be in heavy demand. The 14 principal business airports in the UK are expected to handle more than 110,000 movements in addition to their normal traffic during the 31-day peak period.

The UK National Air Traffic Services (NATS) has designed a computer-based training package to aid operators in the preparation for travel throughout the UK during the 2012 Olympic period. Review the training package.

Airspace Restrictions

The UK government is in the process of developing airspace restrictions that will be in place during the Games. The major restrictions will be centered on London and the Olympic Park and will run from July 14 to August 15. A smaller set of airspace restrictions will in place for the Paralympic Games from August 16 to September 12. Airspace restrictions around other Games venues will only be in place for the duration of the event at each venue, in line with those used for major sporting events. Extra security restrictions may be placed on flights at any time.

Within the restricted airspace there will be an inner prohibited zone where only aircraft that have undergone crew, passenger and baggage screening in accordance with the relevant aviation security program, and are inbound to or outbound from Heathrow, London City RAF Northolt and under the control of those airports or NATS TC or Thames Radar will be allowed.

Biggin Hill airport has been removed from the prohibited zone. Aircraft inbound to Biggin Hill using the instrument approach procedure to Runway 21 may transit the Prohibited Zone provided that they are in contact with NATS TC or Thames Radar and meet all the requirements to enter the Restricted Zone.

There will also be an outer restricted zone where aircraft with an approved flight plan, in communication with ATC, and squawking a discrete transponder code will be allowed to operate.

Airport Slots

From July 21 to August 15, a slot reservation system will be in place for the 40 coordinated airports in Southeast England listed below. Non-scheduled operators on an IFR flight plan will need to have an arrival/departure slot before using a number of airports in the London area.

Eurocontrol will reject any flight plan filed without a slot booking reference number (to be entered in field 18 – ‘other’ – on flight plans) during this period.

Airports Now Requiring Slot Reservations:

  • Biggin Hill, Birmingham, Blackbushe, Bournemouth, Cambridge, Chalgrove, Coventry, Cranfield, Damyns Hall, Denham, Dunsfold, Duxford, Elstree, Fairoaks, Farnborough, Goodwood, Lee-on-Solent, Leicester, London City , London Oxford, Luton, Lydd (London Ashford), Manston, Northampton, Northolt, North Weald, Old Sarum, Peterborough (Conington), Redhill, Rochester, Shoreham, Southend, Southampton, Stansted, Stapleford, Thruxton, White Waltham, Wycombe.

London Gatwick: Slot reservations will remain as per UK AIP – not more than 10 days and preferably not less than 24 hours before the intended movement.

London Heathrow: Unlikely to be available for non-scheduled flights during the Olympic period due to expected declaration of reduced capacity during peak demand.

Requesting Slots

  1. Review slot availability of the airport through the online coordination website.
  2. Contact the Airport/Handling Agent as appropriate.
  3. Airport uses the Online Coordination System to obtain slots.
  4. For General and Business Aviation the Airport will receive in return a unique Slot ID for use with confirmed slots.
  5. Slot ID must be entered by the operator in field 18 of the flight plan, with the prefix of RMK/ASL: i.e RMK/ASLGBXXAPVT554300

Learn More about Slot Requirements


July 23, 2012
Security Expert Warns “Keep Your Guard Up” at 2012 Olympics
July 16, 2012
London-Area Airports Ready for the Olympics
April 30, 2012
UK Airspace and Procedure Changes Surround Olympic Games
September 22, 2011
2012 London Olympics: Start Planning Now
August 5, 2011
UK 2012 Olympics Summit to Clarify Expectations for GA
May 18, 2011
What’s In Store For the 2012 Olympic Games?