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Holidaymakers in Gloucestershire warned of Gatwick chaos over baggage handler shortages

By The Citizen  |  Posted: July 31, 2014

Planes

Holidaymakers have been warned to expect chaos at Gatwick

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GLOUCESTERSHIRE holidaymakers have been warned to expect chaos at Gatwick airport due to a shortage in baggage handlers.

Airlines have warned that passengers could face lengthy delays and flying without their bags on one of the busiest weekends of the year.

Travellers should expect disarray as Swissport, the baggage handling firm, does not have enough staff to load and unload planes.

Difficulties could continue for around four months because airlines are locked in contracts with Swissport.

Airlines that use the baggage-handling company include British Airways, Virgin, Monarch, Thomas Cook and Thomson.

More than 400,000 passengers reportedly passed through Gatwick last weekend alone as families jetted off to holiday destinations during the school summer holidays began.

And it could be even busier this weekend.

Swissport apologised to passengers delayed last weekend, saying the problems were caused by a “level of off schedule activity” and planes arriving and taking off earlier or later than planned.

A spokesman for Gatwick said it is working closely with airlines to improve the performance of Swissport.

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