American travelers arriving at Heathrow Airport in London get Thanksgiving pie surprise

London's Heathrow Airport gave out pies to travelers arriving on U.S.-originating flights the day before Thanksgiving. (Photo: Heathrow Airport)

What says Thanksgiving more than pumpkin pie?

Travelers arriving at London-based Heathrow Airport on U.S.-originating flights experienced a little taste of the holiday on Wednesday.

The airport arranged a Thanksgiving surprise for travelers in the spirit of the holiday. Heathrow teamed up with Whole Foods Market to organize to have the pies ready for travelers arriving the day before the American holiday. 

Ross Baker, Heathrow’s chief commercial officer, told USA TODAY that the airport is proud to be the main gateway for Americans flying into the United Kingdom and into Europe.

“With Thanksgiving being such a key holiday for bringing Americans together to celebrate with friends and family, we wanted to surprise passengers traveling from the USA today with a special taste of home,” Baker said.

Passengers pick up pie at Heathrow's baggage claim. (Photo: Heathrow Airport)

That special taste was delivered in wicker baskets as travelers waited at baggage claim. 

The airport called on baggage ambassadors to help out with the pie distribution and to offer a dollop of whipped cream to top off the welcome dessert. 

One traveler reacted on social media to the treat.

Passenger Regan Vincenza wrote on Twitter that she arrived in London on a flight from New Orleans to a “chorus of ‘Happy Thanksgiving’!” in addition to the pumpkin pie.  

Arrived into Heathrow this morning from New Orleans to a chorus of ‘Happy Thanksgiving’! They were handing out pumpkin pies from @WholeFoodsUK courtest of @HeathrowAirport ??

Both Heathrow and Whole Foods UK responded to Vincenza’s tweet. 

“We hope you enjoy them Regan! Happy early Thanksgiving!” Heathrow replied. Whole Foods echoed the statement: “Enjoy your holiday and welcome to the UK!”

Jade Hoai, director of purchasing and operations for Whole Foods Market UK, said in a release that Thanksgiving is the busiest time for the seven Whole Foods Market locations in the United Kingdom. The reason being that American ex-pats are looking for a piece of home around the holiday. 

“While turkey might get first billing on the day, we know that it’s just not an American Thanksgiving without pie,” said Hoai. 

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The airport also set up screens around the terminal to wish travelers a “Happy Thanksgiving.”

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