Gatwick airport has joined a group of other transport hubs reporting record-breaking passenger numbers for the whole of 2017, seeing 45.6 million passengers.
The airport says December 2017 was its busiest on record, with 3.2 million passengers travelling through it – up 1.5 per cent on the same month in 2016. Whole year figures increased 5.2 per cent, out-pacing the 3.1 per cent growth seen at Heathrow.
Gatwick attributes the boost to continued growth in its long-haul connections, with new routes to Singapore, Rwanda, Seattle and Denver opening in 2017. December alone saw a 16 per cent year-on-year rise in passengers travelling to long-haul destinations, and one million more for the whole year compared to 2016.
Meanwhile, Gatwick says increase global connectivity drove a surge in cargo handled, with tonnage up 33.6 per cent in December.
Stewart Wingate, CEO of Gatwick airport, said: “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.”