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London Gatwick saw record passenger numbers pass through its terminals in the first month of 2016, after catering for 2.5 million people.
The airport, which is currently in a contest with Heathrow to see if either can build an extra runway to deal with increased demand, noted year on year growth of 5.7%.
New routes announced
There have been 11 new routes already announced for this year, including direct flights to Hong Kong, Lima and San Francisco, while European routes grew 5.3% in January compared to the same month last year, with Vienna, Funchal and Dublin being especially popular.
The Airport's Council International Europe has recognised Gatwick's increased performance and named it as one of the fastest growing airports.
Growth in popularity
The first month of 2016 saw an extra 135,417 passengers travel through the airport than in the same month of 2015. Some of this increase is due to there now being more air traffic movements per hour, but the number of larger aircraft being used by various carriers has also had an impact, with average load factors standing at 75.1%.
The growth in the popularity of Gatwick for long haul flights is another factor that has added passenger numbers, with North Atlantic routes in particular driving figures up, having recorded a strong 8.7% year on year increase.
Three of the most significant destinations that have played a part in Gatwick's long haul boom are New York, Los Angeles and Las Vegas.
However, European links continue to be an important aspect of Gatwick's route network and passenger numbers have grown on these too.
Stewart Wingate, Gatwick Chief Executive, said: “Strong growth in our European routes – coupled with the ongoing demand for more and more long haul services - has helped ensure the airport's place among the fastest growing airports of Europe.”
Wingate went on to claim that Gatwick is “one of the biggest businesses in the UK” as well as being “the UK's best connected airport”.
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Date Created: 09/02/2016