Heathrow Airport handled 6.4 million passengers
in August 2009, up by 0.3% on 2008, its busiest ever
August. Heathrow’s figures for August suggest that people are
cutting back on discounted leisure travel, less than they are on
The significance of long-haul markets
not only to UK business but also to UK society was illustrated by
a 19% increase in traffic to India. The people and communities who
use these routes to visit friends and family count on Heathrow as the only London airport that serves
The number of passengers transferring at Heathrow
continued to rise, with travellers taking advantage of the shorter
waiting times between connections at Heathrow, which come from the
high frequency of services and the improved terminal facilities.
The British Pound’s position against the dollar and euro has also helped
Heathrow’s transfer business. Airline load factors grew by 2.7% to
In aggregate, BAA’s seven UK airports handled a total
of 14.4 million passengers in August, a drop of 3.1% on the same
month last year.
Around the airports, performance was mixed. There were again signs
of a revival in European Scheduled traffic (+0.4%). Long Haul
traffic, excluding North Atlantic, was up by 4%. North Atlantic
traffic remained weak with a 7.7% drop on last August. Domestic
traffic fell by 5.9%.
Gatwick’s performance is improving.
While it recorded a 4.6% reduction against August 2008, it was the
only airport to grow its domestic market (1.2%) and its important
European scheduled traffic grew by 5.6%.
numbers are up for the fifth consecutive month (4.8%), helped by
new low-cost scheduled services to Europe.
Stansted recorded a
drop of 7.8%, largely down to airline capacity reductions and
Southampton’s figures fell by 3.7%.
Glasgow recorded a 13.4%
decrease in August, and Aberdeen was 9.8% down on last year.
For the group as a whole the number of air transport movements
in August was 5.2% lower than a year ago when airlines were only
beginning to respond to the downturn in traffic by cutting
The drop in cargo tonnage (-7.5%) marked the first time
since November 2008 that the decrease has been in single figures
and August was the fourth consecutive month of reducing losses.
See other recent news regarding: