Luton airport and London City fastest growing
The London airports showing the fastest growth are Luton airport and London City airport according to the latest figures from the Civil Aviation Authority.
Take-offs and landings at London City airport were up by 15.9% in 2007, and by 5.8% at Luton airport. London City and Luton airport also handled more than half a million more passengers in 2007. The number of passengers was also up by more than half a million at Heathrow airport. But the biggest growth in passenger numbers was at Gatwick airport, up by a million.
However, overall growth in passengers at UK airports was only 2.4% in 2007. "This growth is slower than that seen over the last decade and continues a trend which began in 2005," notes the CAA.
Passenger growth at regional airports was 2.9% to 101 million. London airports now account for 58% of total UK passengers, down marginally on the 58.2% in 2006. There are now nine regional airports handling more than 5 million passengers a year - Manchester airport, Birmingham airport, East Midlands airport, Bristol airport, Liverpool airport, Newcastle airport, Edinburgh airport, Glasgow airport, and Belfast International airport.
The figures show new trends emerging in air travel. The biggest increase was in passengers on flights to and from Poland - up by one million, or 30.7%. Passengers on flights to and from North America were also up, reversing the previous trend, and perhaps an indication of the strength of the pound against the dollar.
The greatest decline in passengers for countries in Europe was Ireland, down by 0.8% after showing growth of 4.8% in 2006. Overall passengers on domestic flights fell by 1.9%, the only market segment where numbers are not increasing.
Passengers on flights to and from Australasia and the Middle East were up by more than 10% on 2006. The CAA figures also show that charter flights are declining in popularity, down 4.6% in 2007.
Written by: Nick Purdom
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