Home Business Heathrow passenger numbers soar as travellers flee wet weather

Heathrow passenger numbers soar as travellers flee wet weather

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The increase in flyers comes following a gloomy summer in the UK and after countries such as China lifted the last of their COVID travel restrictions.
By Daniel Binns, business reporter
Friday 11 August 2023 10:27, UK
Heathrow has said passenger numbers are almost back to pre-pandemic levels after an extra 1.3 million flyers used the airport in July.
The wet weather across the UK this summer helped boost flight sales, with sunny locations proving popular, a spokesperson said.
More than 7.6 million passengers travelled through the London airport last month – up a fifth on the 6.3 million who did so in July 2022, according to its latest figures.
That included 73,000 departures to Turkey – the busiest month ever recorded for the destination, the airport said.
The numbers of passengers flying to Gibraltar, Portugal and Italy were also close to record levels.
The total is just below the 7.8 million flyers who travelled through the airport in July 2019 before COVID led to lockdowns around the world in the spring of 2020.
The year-on-year increase was also driven by flights to and from Asia – which were up 129% – after countries including China lifted the last of their pandemic-era travel restrictions.
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Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: „It’s great to see so many passengers getting away to grab some summer sun.
„We’ve got a great range of popular destinations and our teams are delivering excellent service which will ensure your travels get off to the best start.”
The airport also said security queues had been „consistently under five minutes”.
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The figures further revealed that passenger numbers to North American destinations increased by 77%, with New York remaining the airport’s most popular destination.
Airlines have also reported an increase in ticket sales this year as the travel industry continues to recover from the impact of the pandemic.
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