May 2012 traffic figures – BAA’s airports
Posted: 12 June 2012 | BAA | No comments yet
More than 9.3 million people passed through BAA’s airports last month, a fall of just 0.1% compared with May 2011…
BAA airports show resilience in the face of economic uncertainty.
More than 9.3 million people passed through BAA’s airports last month, a fall of just 0.1% compared with May 2011. Heathrow passenger numbers were down 0.6% with 5.8 million people passing through its terminals. Most of this fall was due to last year’s late Easter and Royal Wedding which boosted traffic in May 2011, whilst the move of the late May bank holiday into June this year reduced May 2012’s traffic figures.
Passenger numbers at Glasgow rose almost 10%, whilst Aberdeen saw passenger numbers rise nearly 16% and Edinburgh handled 2.2% more passengers compared with last year. The Scottish airports all saw their performance affected by cancellations in May last year due to the volcanic ash cloud. Even after stripping out this effect Glasgow still saw a 6.2% increase thanks to a 33% rise in European scheduled traffic and Aberdeen rose by 13%.
Stansted saw passengers numbers fall 5.5% with European scheduled and long haul traffic most affected. With a strong bias towards leisure traffic, the switch in the bank holiday and school half terms from their usual timing in late May to early June this year accounted for some of the fall. Passenger numbers at Southampton were 4.7% lower, due largely to an 8.3% drop in European scheduled traffic.
There was no pick up in cargo traffic, with 144,000 metric tonnes being moved, a drop of 2.4% for the group. Cargo traffic at Heathrow was down 3.8%. Both figures are likely to be a reflection of the continued economic problems, particularly in the Eurozone.
The impact of the Eurozone crisis can also be seen in passenger numbers to the worst affected countries. Passenger numbers between Heathrow and Greece dropped 11.3% compared with May last year, with numbers to and from Italy falling 9.2%, Portugal 11.4% and Spain 2.5%.
BAA Chief Executive, Colin Matthews, said:
“The continued resilience of our airports in the face of economic turbulence is encouraging. But the impact of the Eurozone crisis is still being felt with sharp falls in passenger numbers to the worst affected countries and reduced cargo traffic. This is why the UK needs to urgently build better links to the countries whose economies are growing such as China, India and Brazil. But with the UKâ€™s only hub airport, Heathrow, already full, France and Germany are forging ahead and we are being left behind.”