London airports buck traffic trend

London airports buck traffic trendThe London hubs of Heathrow and Gatwick Airport bucked an overall trend of falling passenger figures across the UK in May, airport operator BAA announced.

Heathrow handled more than 5.6 million travellers last month, a 0.6 per cent increase on May 2007, while Gatwick saw its figures increase by 1.1 per cent to reach three million.

BAA’s seven UK airports handled a combined total of 12.7 million passengers in May, which represented a 0.5 per cent drop on the previous year.

The operator attributed this reduction to falls of 5.3 per cent in domestic traffic and 2.5 per cent in European charter market passengers.

Small increases were recorded in the BAA airports’ European scheduled sector and the North Atlantic and long-haul markets.

Two hubs outside London managed small year-on-year increases in passenger traffic in May – Southampton Airport (6.9 per cent) and Edinburgh (0.7 per cent).

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