Gatwick’s busiest ever December closes record-breaking year as 45.6m passengers travel through in 2017

London Gatwick ended 2017 with its busiest December on record, as 3.2 million passengers travelled through the airport during the festive month, an increase of 1.5% year-on-year. 45.6 million passengers used the airport in 2017, +5.2% on 2016.

After a year of continued booming growth in Gatwick’s long-haul connections, with new routes including Singapore, Rwanda, Seattle and Denver, December saw a 16% year-on-year rise in passengers travelling long-haul.

The airport’s long-haul network grew to 63 connections in 2017, and Gatwick welcomed 7.3 million long-haul passengers across the year – an increase of almost one million compared with 2016.

Oakland, San Francisco proved to be the long-haul destination with the biggest growth at Gatwick in December, as the number of passengers travelling there increased by 97% on the previous year.

The airport’s Asia routes also continued their significant growth with Hong Kong +62% and Tianjin +41.7% in December. A new China Airlines service to Taipei joined Gatwick’s burgeoning Asia route network at the start of the month.

Meanwhile, Gatwick’s growing global connectivity continues to drive a surge in the volume of cargo handled by the airport – tonnage was up 33.6% in December.

Gatwick Airport, Chief Executive Officer, Stewart Wingate said:

“2017 was a great year for Gatwick in which we delivered record passenger growth and an array of new long-haul routes, bringing our annual passenger total to 45.6 million and extending our long-haul network to 63 connections.

“Gatwick’s soaring long-haul and cargo growth in December is an impressive conclusion to 2017 and we’ll be strengthening the airport’s global connectivity even further this year, with new services to Buenos Aires, Austin and Chicago already confirmed to begin in the first quarter alone.

“This year, we’re also looking forward to British Airways’ biggest summer schedule at Gatwick for almost ten years, which will see 15% more weekly BA flights than last summer.

“We have ambitious plans to build on the success achieved in 2017 and reach 50 million passengers per year and beyond, setting new standards for Gatwick and playing an increased global role for Britain. This will be done while continuing to deliver the best passenger experience, which is at the heart of everything we do at Gatwick.”

Month   Moving Annual Total
Growth Jan-17 Jan-16 Growth
  Dec-17 Dec-16 (%)   Dec-17 Dec-16 (%)
Total terminal passengers (000s) 3,170.5 3,122.7 1.5% 45,561.7 43,289.5 5.2%
Market Analysis:
UK + Channel Islands 299.2 326.4 (8.3)% 4,084.8 3,886.9 5.1%
Ireland 143.3 138.6 3.4% 1,687.9 1,618.2 4.3%
European scheduled 1,851.3 1,859.1 (0.4)% 29,356.9 28,314.3 3.7%
European charter 219.5 232.1 (5.4)% 3,055.0 3,011.2 1.5%
North Atlantic 242.4 190.0 27.6% 3,251.4 2,704.1 20.2%
Other long haul 414.7 376.5 10.2% 4,125.7 3,754.8 9.9%
Air transport movements 20,486 20,752 (1.3)% 285,969 280,089 2.1%
Cargo (metric tonnes) 9,849 7,375 33.6% 97,045 77,995 24.4%