A busy Easter helped Heathrow Airport to break records as over six million passengers were welcomed during the month, an 11% raise compared to April 2016. Middle-East traffic rose 20% in light of an increase in the number of operational A380s and the new service to Tehran, whilst North American traffic rose 10% on higher load factors.
The most popular international destinations in April were Dubai and New York, which saw over 500,000 travelers. The added choices on Scottish routes was wall received buy travelers and the month saw a 19,000-passenger boost owing to Flybe’s new services to Aberdeen and Edinburgh.
British exports from Heathrow continue to grow, with the volume of cargo flying out of the airport increasing 12% in April compared to the same period in 2016. European volume increased 11%, but this was overshadowed by an impressive increase of 27% for Latin America and 19% for South Asia when compared to April 2016. A 14% growth in cargo to North America compared to April 2016 demonstrated a health state of affairs, especially as this region is the U.K.’s greatest export destination.
Qingdao in Shandong, China’s economic powerhouse and home to Confucius and Tsingtao beer, should be connected to Heathrow later in the year after Beijing Capital Airlines confirmed it will commence services to London. This will provide nearly 4,000 tons of new cargo space for British exports to a rapidly growing market in China.
According to Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye: “Heathrow had a bumper April – growth in 2017 has been faster than most expected, reinforcing the need for more capacity at the nation’s hub.
“Britain’s exports outside the EU are thriving and with Heathrow expansion opening up to 40 new long-haul trading links, the scale of the opportunity across the globe is tremendous. We’re working around-the-clock to deliver Britain’s new runway and secure the country’s future as a global trading powerhouse.”