The boss of one of the busiest airports in the world has denounced a TikTok travel “hack” aimed at avoiding queues.
These are non-disabled travelers requesting wheelchair assistance in order to be expedited to their flights.
Heathrow chief executive John Holland-Kaye said the trend was “wrong”.
Heathrow Airport boss John Holland-Kaye blames a TikTok ‘travel hack’ for delays for people with mobility issues, saying some passengers ‘use a wheelchair carrier to get through the airport faster “.@NickFerrariLBC pic.twitter.com/XZodA7a9Tm
July 26, 2022
“For passengers requiring wheelchair assistance, we have more demand than before the pandemic. Why is this happening? It’s partly because people are using wheelchair assistance to try to access quickly at the airport. This is absolutely the wrong thing to do,” he told LBC radio station.
“If you go to TikTok, you’ll see this is one of the travel hacks people recommend. Please don’t do this.”
LBC host Nick Ferrari called it “scandalous”.
A recent video from TikTok showed a traveler at Bristol Airport pretending to have an ankle injury, so he could avoid queues at security and check-in.
Wolf Jenkins’ video, which has been viewed more than 2 million times, sparked a huge backlash, with some commentators calling it “a new low” and an “abuse of the system”. Others called the stunt “smart”.
Heathrow Airport is one of many European hubs that has struggled to cope with a surge in travellers. The daily number of departing passengers was capped at 100,000 at the start of the month to ease the pressure. Huge demand for summer travel coupled with a shortage of pilots, cabin crew, check-in staff and baggage handlers has led to long queues and travel frustration.