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NEWS Last modified on January 11, 2018

World's airports continue to report healthy 2017 traffic rises

Heathrow (+3%), Los Angeles (+5%), Oslo (6.6%), Manchester (+8.5%), Glasgow (+5.8%) and Edinburgh (+14%) today unveiled record breaking traffic figures for 2017.

Heathrow's increase ensured that it handled an all time high of 78 million passengers in 2017.

It also accommodated 1.7 million tonnes of cargo – equivalent to the weight of 134,000 London buses or 136 London Shards – during the year.

Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: “Heathrow had its best year ever in 2017 helping to strengthen the British economy as the country seeks to redefine its role in the world.

"Our colleagues welcomed 78 million passengers and supported the delivery of record volumes of British trade to markets around the world. We’re looking forward to continuing to deliver for Britain in 2018 as we progress our expansion plans.” 
LAX planes
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) handled 84.9 million passengers in 2017 to register its fourth consecutive year of traffic growth.

Of those travellers, close to 25 million — or around 2 million over last year — were international.

Operator, Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA_ attributes the upturn to the improving economy, competitive fares, and new and existing airlines adding more flights to LAX.

The record numbers coincide with LAX’s $14 billion modernisation project which is helping to cement the airport’s place as a world-class transit hub.

“Los Angeles World Airports is excited to continue to embrace and amplify the message that Everyone is Welcome to Los Angeles, and our multi-billion dollar investment in LAX modernisation is a testament to our focus on creating a gold-standard airport worthy of our international city and visitors,” said Los Angeles Board of Airport Commissioners president, Sean Burton.

“In 2028, we will welcome the world to Los Angeles through the gateway of LAX, and every day we are taking steps to improve the guest experience, increase our global reach, and welcome more travelers to the Southern California region."
Oslo take off

Oslo Airport handled 27.5 million passengers in 2017 as traffic across Avinor's Norwegian airport network inreased by 2.1 million passengers last year.

Tromsø (8.7), Harstad/Narvik (6.2%) and Bergen (2.8%) saw the strongest increase.

"Improvements in the Norwegian economy, and consequently greater optimism both among businesses and individuals, is the main reason behind the increase in passenger numbers," noted Avinor CEO, Dag Falk-Petersen.

"Furthermore, the economic upturn that we are seeing internationally, has a positive impact on visitor numbers to Norway as well."

Manchester copy
A total of 27.8 milllion passengers passed through Manchester Airport in the UK in 2017 – an increase of 8.5% on the previous year.

MAG's other UK airports, Londion Stansted and East Midlands also enjoyed healthy traffic rises of 6.5% and 7.3% respectively.

It claims that Manchester Airport's growth was helped by the success of long-haul routes to Beijing, Singapore, Hong Kong, San Francisco and Houston, combined with continued strong demand for summer holidays to Spain, Greece and the Canary Islands. 

Glasgow kerbside
Glasgow Airport reports that it enjoyed its busiest ever year in 2017, with more than 9.9 million passengers passung through the Scottish gateway.

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: “To carry more than 9.9 million passengers is a huge achievement and testament to the hard work put in by more than 5,000 people across the airport.

“It was also particularly pleasing that we were able to considerably increase our connectivity, particularly across Europe, by securing more than 30 routes and services during the year.

“Over the last 12 months we also made considerable improvements to the airport by investing more than £25 million on a number of successful projects including the resurfacing of the runway, increasing aircraft stand capacity and the opening of our new consolidated car rental centre.

"Phase one of the expansion project to increase our Central Search security area by 20% also got underway in December and should be completed in the first quarter of 2018.

“While Glasgow Airport enters 2018 in a position of strength, the wider aviation industry faces a number of challenges in the year ahead. These challenges will be particularly heightened by the Brexit situation, so it’s important we have clarity as early as possible on how the UK’s future relationship with the European Union will work."

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Edinburgh, Scotland's busiest airport, welcomed 13.4 million passengers in 2017 breaking all records in the process.

Chief executive, Gordon Dewar, enthused: “This is a fantastic achievement for Edinburgh Airport – to welcome more than 13 million passengers is a real triumph and one that we are delighted by.

“That success is of course down to the vast choice of destinations we offer, our partner airlines and businesses, but it’s also down to the dedicated and expert staff who work across our campus to ensure the airport operates smoothly and successfully.
"We thank all of them for the sometimes unseen work that they do that is so crucial to our operations.

“We’ve already announced new and extended routes this year and construction continues on our £80 million extension project so we are preparing for further growth.

"We know we play a crucial role in the economy and we want to use Edinburgh and Scotland’s global appeal and standing to bring further benefits – but that sense of adventure that an airport offers is also important to us.

“We are excited about what 2018 will bring and we hope to deliver more choices and destinations for our passengers throughout the year.”

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