Number of air passengers expected to double in 20 years to reach 7.3bn

According to The International Air Transport Association (IATA), the number of air passenger is expected to more than double within the next two decades, The Scotsman has reported.

In its first 20-year growth forecast, IATA said that nearly 3.3 billion passengers are forecast to travel this year, and the overall aviation market is set to grow by 4.1 per cent a year over the next two decades. IATA, the trade association for the world’s airlines representing nearly 240 global airlines, predicts that global passenger numbers would reach 7.3 billion by 2034.

By 2030, China is predicted to overtake the United States as the world’s largest passenger market, in terms of passengers travelling to, from and within the country, IATA said. IATA also predicts that India could overtake the UK to become the world’s third-largest air travel market in 2031.

While Asia-Pacific is expected to register annual growth rates of 4.9 per cent, Europe is set to have the slowest growth at 2.7 per cent and North America will have 3.3 per cent.

Tony Tyler, IATA’s director-general, said: ‘It is an exciting prospect to think that in the next 20 years more than twice as many passengers as today will have the chance to fly. Air connectivity on this scale will help transform economic opportunities for millions of people.’

‘By 2034, the aviation sector could support about 105 million jobs – against 58 million today – and contribute $6 trillion (£3.8tn) to the global economy,’ Tyler said, adding: ‘Air connectivity can only thrive when nations open their skies and markets. It’s a virtuous circle. Growing connectivity stimulates economies [which] demand greater connectivity.’

‘If aviation were a country, it would be amongst the top ten largest contributors to climate change on the planet,’ the report quoted Lang Banks, director of environmental campaign group WWF Scotland, as saying.

‘Despite all the promised efficiency gains, the growth in passenger numbers and flights predicted by the industry are totally incompatible with the need to curb emissions from this sector,’ Banks added.


Manchester Airport registers over two million passengers in June

More than two million passengers have used Manchester Airport, the gateway to the North of England, in June, according to the latest data.

The 2.1 million passenger figure was up by 4.1 percent on June 2012. According to data released this month by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), Manchester Airport was above the UK airport average of 3.2 percent passenger growth for June.

June 2013 was the 13th consecutive month of passenger growth at the gateway, the growth being mostly fuelled by the introduction of new flight launches. New services have been launched, including Egypt Air’s service to Cairo that was launched in June, and TAP Portugal announced an increase of weekly flights to Lisbon, from 7 per week to 10.

Manchester Airports Group chief commercial officer, Ken O’Toole, said: ‘We’ve seen over a year of continued month-on-month growth now and the next few months will provide an additional boost as over 14m passengers are expected to use Manchester Airport during the summer.

‘We’re entering the full swing of the summer season and are expecting a further surge in passengers once the schools break up as millions of people fly away for a well-deserved break,’ he added.

Presently the top five overseas destinations for this summer are Palma, Amsterdam, Dubai, Alicante and Tenerife. According to the CAA, the busiest day of the summer this year is expected to be August 23, with more than 84,000 passengers expected to travel through the airport on that day.

The positive trend at Manchester is expected to be sustained, helped by Virgin Atlantic’s announcement that it will be offering 30,000 extra return seats to Orlando from Manchester Airport. Starting from summer 2014, the carrier will fly daily from Manchester Airport and twice a day on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.

Part of the Manchester Airports Group (MAG), Manchester Airport is the third largest in the UK, with three terminals and two runways, and is set to begin construction on the UK’s first Airport City project this year. The airport celebrated its 75th anniversary on June 25, this year.


60 million and counting as Easyjet breaks its annual passenger record

Easyjet, a low-budget airline based in Luton, UK, has announced that it has achieved a record-breaking annual passenger throughput.

The airline carried 60 million passengers in the year ending May 31, 2013, its largest ever annual figure.

To mark the milestone, over one hundred of the company’s employees came together to form a large ’60’ outside the airline’s Hangar 89 headquarters in Luton.

Carolyn McCall, Easyjet’s chief executive, said, ‘We are proud to be celebrating this landmark achievement of flying over 60 million passengers across our network for the first time in one year. It’s testament to the hard work and dedication of everybody at Easyjet. Our success lies in the fact that we provide low fares and friendly service on modern, punctual aircraft across a network that offers a choice of over 600 routes.’

Since it commenced operations in November 1995, Easyjet has achieved year-on-year growth, and it reached the milestone of 10 million passengers carried in a year as early as July 2001, having taken just six years to do so from the company’s launch. In terms of the number of passengers carried, Easyjet is the second largest budget airline in Europe, after Ryanair.

With its subsidiary, Easyjet Switzerland, the company now operates over 200 aircraft and has more than 20 European bases, with London’s second busiest airport, Gatwick, being its largest.

Easyjet’s fleet of aircraft mainly comprises Airbus A319-100’s and Airbus A320-200’s.

Full details of the company’s routes, availability and pricing can be obtained from


London Heathrow Airport Reports July 2012 Traffic Decrease

London Heathrow Airport has reported a fall in its July 2012 passenger traffic, despite the 2012 Olympic Games opening during the month.

The airport has reported that the fall in passenger traffic is due to ‘UK passengers staying at home, as well as non-Olympic visitors from overseas choosing to defer their journeys’, a situation that was not compensated for by the arrival of Olympic athletes, officials and international visitors to London for the sporting event.

BAA Ltd, owner and operator of six British airports including London Heathrow, has announced that the airport, which has been the official airport for the 2012 Olympic Games, has announced a passenger traffic figure of 6.6 million for July 2012, a drop of 4.4 percent compared to the same month last year.

The airport’s recently completed monthly survey, which asked passengers to rate their experience at the airport on a scale of 1 to 5, and where 5 stood for excellent service, resulted in arrivals being rated at 4.3, and departures at 4.22, setting a new record for the month of July.

BAA chief executive officer, Colin Matthews, said, ‘We are proud to have played our part in giving the very best welcome to London 2012 to athletes and visitors alike. Seven years of hard work and planning, the warmth and enthusiasm of more than a thousand volunteers and additional Border Force staff produced our strongest ever passenger satisfaction scores.’

Domestic traffic at the airport has increased by 1.2 percent in July 2012, compared with the same period last year, while international traffic has fallen by 6.6 percent for European destinations, and 6.35 percent for other routes, except North Atlantic destinations, when compared to July 2011.


London Underground Completes Record Number of Journeys during 2012 Olympics

London Underground, a rapid transit system in the UK’s capital city, has reported the completion of around 46.95 million passenger journeys in the first 12 days of the recently concluded Olympic games.

The transport system has reported the completion of 11.05 million more journeys during the initial 12 days of the 2012 Olympics, or around a 30 percent increase, compared with same period in the preceding year. This is a record number of journeys completed in a given period by the network.

This news comes as the transport network continues to serve record numbers of passengers, as Londoners and visitors continue to flock to London’s attractions.

Weekend Tube traffic has seen the biggest percentage increase, with last Sunday’s numbers being 77 percent higher than the same day last year, and Tuesday saw more than 4.5 million Tube journeys – the highest number in the Tube’s history.

The transport commissioner for London, Peter Hendy, said earlier, ‘We’re incredibly grateful to Londoners for adapting their travel patterns throughout the Olympics. By travelling outside peak times or taking different routes, it’s made a huge contribution to ensuring the success of the Games and keeping London moving.

We will need to continue to keep this sensible planning going, avoiding the busiest times and places, as we enter the Paralympics in just 19 days time.

This summer presents a huge wealth of opportunities spanning sport and culture and Londoners and visitors should take advantage of the many theatres, restaurants, shops, free concerts, Live Sites and attractions that the capital has to offer.’


BA let passenger know how to survive a plane crash – but it’ll cost them

Money can’t save you from a plane crash… but now it can give you a better chance of surviving.


Richer passengers will now be able to take part in a British Airways course. But only members of BA’s elite executive club will be given the opportunity by exchanging air miles for the training session.


The four-hour course costs around £125 and focuses on the aftermath of a plane crash.  According the research by the Civil Aviation Authority, its is after the crash that many deaths occur – people panic or freeze and cant undo their seatbelt.


The BA course will allow its members to practice using oxygen masks, escape slides and life jackets.


Andy Clubb, who runs the course for BA, told The Independent:


‘It makes passengers safer when travelling by giving additional skills. It dispels all those internet theories about the ‘brace position’ and it gives people so much more confidence in flying.’


‘With other passengers around them reacting in a positive manner to the instructions being given by the crew, the few passengers that might have frozen might follow those who demonstrate that they know what they are doing.’


Virgin Atlantic also have a similar course for £78m which also states its to help passengers in the event of a crash landing.

New measures to cut delays at Heathrow


Passengers using Heathrow and communities around the airport could benefit from reduced delays, less stacking and fewer unscheduled night flights at the UK’s busiest airport as part of a trial of new measures announced today by Aviation Minister Theresa Villiers.

The measures are set out in the final report by the Government’s South East Airports Taskforce which has been published today. They are focused on making Heathrow more resilient and better able to recover on days when the airport’s operations are disrupted by poor weather or other problems.

When such problems occur, these proposals would allow, exceptionally, both Heathrow’s runways to be used simultaneously for either arrivals or departures as a way to cut delays and cancellations and get punctuality back on track.

The Task-force also endorsed plans for a switch to a smarter, more effective and more passenger-friendly airport security regime for all UK airports – details of which have also been published today for consultation.

Set up to identify operational improvements at the UK’s three busiest airports – the South East Airports Taskforce included representatives from airlines, airport operators, regulators and other interests.

Aviation Minister Theresa Villiers said:

“Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted airports play a vital role in supporting the UK economy. Improving the reliability of these airports, particularly Heathrow, was a priority for the Task-force.

“These measures have the potential to deliver greater reliability for passengers, while reducing the impact of unscheduled night flights on local communities. Trialling these changes will allow their benefits and impacts to be assessed and there will be extensive engagement and consultation with local communities before any decision is taken on whether to make the changes permanent.

“Coupled with today’s proposals to give UK airports more flexibility in the way they deliver airport security, passengers should begin to see real improvements. I am grateful to all Taskforce members for working so constructively together to help make our airports better.”

Under existing arrangements, Heathrow operates largely on a runway alternation system, whereby one runway is used for arrivals and the other for departures – with the roles reversed halfway through the day to provide respite from noise for residents living near the end of the runways. The Government has made clear its support for the continuation of runway alternation.