15 November 2013

London Gatwick saw 3.1 million passengers use the airport in October 2013 - an increase of 4.3% or 128,000 passengers over the prior year.

The growth in European routes continued with more than 2.3 million passengers choosing to fly from London Gatwick - an increase of 5.6% from last year. A notable increase in European flights was on key business routes. Destinations including Geneva, Luxembourg and Istanbul added over 100,000 passengers. This was tempered by fewer passengers on charter flights to European leisure destinations.

The reported loss of traffic to North America, down 10.5%, was nearly all due to US Airways ceasing services from London Gatwick earlier in the year. However, next summer’s launch of three new Norwegian services to the US will help support growth going forward.

Other long haul growth was up 9.0%, also mainly as a result of increases on business routes such as Dubai and Vietnam. This was complemented by growth on long haul leisure routes including Morocco and Sri Lanka.

For domestic traffic, increases on the Belfast (up 13,400 passengers) and Isle of Man (up 3,200 passengers) routes were offset by the withdrawal of some other routes including Manchester.

Load factors - showing how full the average flight was - were at 81.7%, in line with the prior year.

Other news in October included:

  • Norwegian Air announced it will launch direct services from Gatwick to New York (JFK), Los Angeles and Fort Lauderdale in July 2014. Norwegian’s highly competitive prices – up to 50% cheaper than flying from Heathrow - will make flying from London to the US much more affordable.
  • easyJet launched its new route to Bucharest, Romania. The new link means passengers can now travel to 44 of the 50 largest European business routes from Gatwick. easyJet also announced it will start double daily flights to Paris from next summer, as well as services to Newcastle and Jersey. It will also launch a summer service to Brittany.
  • Tickets for Garuda Indonesia’s new service from Gatwick to Jakarta – which will be the UK’s only direct route – went on sale for flights starting in May 2014.

Nick Dunn, Chief Financial Officer at London Gatwick, said:

“Gatwick continues to successfully compete with other London airports. Business and leisure passengers are choosing to fly from Gatwick thanks to the range of destinations we serve – more than any other UK airport – and our continued focus on delivering excellent service and facilities. As well as attracting more passengers, we have also added airlines and routes, ultimately building more connections between London and the world.

“In October, Norwegian announced it will start direct services between Gatwick and the US, including New York, and easyJet’s increasing connections on key European business routes mean passengers now have even more choice in terms of destination and price. The marketplace we operate in is becoming more competitive, which can only be good news for passengers.”

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