Gatwick achieved its 23rd successive month on month growth in January, with more than 2.3 million passengers flying through the airport. This was 5.5% up on last year, representing an additional 124,000 passengers, and Gatwick’s busiest ever January.
Long-haul transatlantic plays a key role in Gatwick’s growth with an increase of 11.4% over 2014 - thanks mainly to Norwegian Air’s low cost flights to New York and Los Angeles which launched last summer. Other long-haul growth saw travel to Dubai up 12.3% as passengers take advantage of the extra capacity that Emirates is able to offer since introducing its A380 at the end of March 2014.
Gatwick’s ability to provide routes to emerging markets continues to be an area of growth with Turkey seeing 5,000 extra passengers over January last year, an increase of 19.8%.
European travel continues to perform strongly with an increase of 98,600 passengers in January across both chartered and scheduled. Gatwick now serves 46 of the 50 top business destinations in Europe with Paris, Amsterdam and Copenhagen providing the biggest numbers from Gatwick in January.
Gatwick is currently half way through £2.2 billion of investment; part of this has seen more efficiency on the runway and allowed the airport to introduce more slots than last year. Growth has also come from increased airline capacity with 138 more air traffic movements in January versus last year, as well as larger aircraft and increased numbers of passengers wanting to travel.
Nick Dunn, Chief Financial Officer at London Gatwick, said: “As the world’s busiest single runway airport, we are achieving great things, and our continued investment in optimising every aspect of both the passenger experience and the operation of the airport, continues to pay off. The pattern of growth is set to continue but will come at a price and we will struggle to meet demand in future years.
“When looking at airport expansion, only Gatwick can deliver the economic benefit and the extra capacity the UK needs at an environmental cost it can afford. Gatwick expansion will also deliver more competition between airports serving London and the UK, as well as greater competition within airlines, offering passengers more choice and helping keep airfares lower.”