The world’s third busiest gateway says fast-growing emerging markets continue to be a driver of traffic growth with passenger volumes up 6.3% to Latin America, 5.2% to East Asia and 3.5% to the Middle East & Central Asia.
It also saw growth of 2.5% in transfer passenger volumes and attracted more long-haul flights to growth markets like China and Mexico. while there was growth of 5.3% in cargo volumes to 1.5 million metric tonnes, which it says is helping more of Britain’s exports reach new markets.
December was also the busiest ever at Heathrow 5.93 million passengers choosing to travel through the gateway over the festive season, a rise of 2.4% on December 2013
Heathrow says larger, quieter aircraft continued to contribute to passenger growth, and seats per aircraft increased 0.6% to 208.4, while load factors remained strong at 76.6%, and passengers per aircraft rose 0.4% to 159.6
Passenger volumes continued growth within emerging markets, increasing 15.1% to China, 10.9% to Mexico and 4.0% to the Middle East & Central Asia, and cargo volumes saw strong growth of 6.2% overall, including increases of 33.5% to Mexico, 29.4% to Brazil, 15% to Turkey and 11.2% to India.
Heathrow CEO, John Holland-Kaye, says: “Vietnam Airlines’ announcement that it is moving its operation from Gatwick to Heathrow is good news for Britain as it secures a direct flight to an important growth economy, with more frequent flights and cargo capacity.
“It also underlines that airlines can only make flights to many long haul destinations viable from a hub airport like Heathrow.
“Only by expanding Heathrow can we add direct flights to the world's growing cities, increase our exports and connect all of the UK to global growth. Expanding Heathrow will help Britain win the race for growth."