Norwich International Airport (NI) has registered a 7.6 percent increase in passenger numbers in 2013, with over 460,000 travellers from the region using the facility, the airport said in a release.
The biggest rise was registered in the holidaymaker category, which increased by 45 percent on 2012, with over 107,000 people travelling on holiday from their own local airport. A major portion of the growth was generated by Thomson First Choice, which doubled its activity in Norwich in 2013, compared to 2012.
The holiday company has confirmed its commitment to the Airport in 2014 by increasing the number of weekly flights to Palma Majorca and offering better flight times for holidaymakers after designating an aircraft to stay at the Airport throughout the entire summer season.
Another sector to report strong growth was offshore helicopter traffic, with over 98,000 passengers travelling offshore, an increase of 18 percent on the previous year. Norwich is now the UK’s busiest offshore heliport after Aberdeen.
KLM’s hub feeder service to Amsterdam Schiphol also enjoyed a busy year after the addition of the fourth daily flight throughout the summer months. KLM will be reintroducing the fourth daily flight from March 30, 2014, due to the success of the 2013 operation.
Passenger numbers to both Jersey and Edinburgh declined following a reduction in the number of flights to both locations. However, Flybe’s recent announcement that Loganair will assume the operation of the Edinburgh route from March 30, 2014, is expected to offer holiday-makers flexible day returns and greater opportunity for short breaks in both Edinburgh and into the Highlands and Islands of Scotland, via Loganair’s wider network.
Andrew Bell, the airport’s chief executive, commented: ‘Posting strong passenger growth is good news for Norwich Airport and good news for the region, as ultimately the flights that are operated from the Airport must be used by the travelling public if they are to remain on offer. The addition of frequencies on the Edinburgh and Amsterdam services is testament to this.’
However, at the Airport we recognise that we still have a great deal to do in order to satisfy the demands of the region’s business and leisure travellers alike.’