London Stansted Airport growth spurt continues

Photo Credit: London Stansted Airport.

London Stansted Airport has continued to defy the industry challenges posed by the pandemic and subsequent recovery era.

Welcoming more than 2.6 million passengers in September, it has not only surpassed pre-pandemic passenger volumes but has also emerged as a significant catalyst for tourism in the UK.

September Surge

September 2023 marked an impressive milestone for London Stansted Airport, with a 10% increase in passenger numbers compared to the same month the previous year.

What’s even more striking is that it has now outperformed its September 2019 figures, further solidifying its position as a thriving hub for travelers.

This winning combination of choice and efficiency continues to draw passengers from not only London but also the entire East of England region.

With an impressive array of European routes, Stansted has made the UK accessible to countless travelers who previously had to rely on larger city airports.


London Stansted Airport Has A Strong July
Photo Credit: London Stansted Airport.

Boosting International Tourism

Stansted’s remarkable performance isn’t just good news for the airport; it’s also playing a pivotal role in revitalizing international tourism in the capital.

The airport’s success story supports the return of international visitors to London, which is a crucial aspect of the city’s economic revival.

Over the 12 months ending in September 2023, London Stansted served a staggering 27.3 million passengers.

This impressive figure represents a remarkable increase of 32.2% compared to the previous year, demonstrating the airport’s relentless commitment to passenger satisfaction.

Streamlined Operations

Efficiency is clearly the name of the game at London Stansted. With a remarkable 99% of passengers passing through security in just 15 minutes or less, and average queue times of less than four minutes during peak departure hours, the airport is setting a new standard for passenger convenience.

Stansted’s reputation as the leading UK airport for direct flights to Europe is well-deserved. The top three most popular countries for travelers in September were Spain, Italy, and Turkey.

Additionally, the busiest individual routes were Istanbul, Dublin, and Palma De Mallorca. This underscores the airport’s pivotal role in connecting the UK with European destinations.

Aerial view of London Stansted airport
Photo Credit: London Stansted Airport

Message from the Managing Director

Gareth Powell, the Managing Director of London Stansted, expressed his pride in the airport’s role in enhancing travel opportunities.

He emphasized the airport’s dedication to serving unique destinations and providing great value flights in a convenient and easily accessible location.

The Tourism Gateway to London

Powell also highlighted that Stansted is the second busiest airport for visitors to London. Its extensive European route network offers passengers from Spain, Italy, and France unparalleled access to the UK, bypassing the need to travel to larger city airports and providing a direct gateway to London.

The airport’s focus on delivering value, a diverse range of destinations, and a reliable and efficient operational experience has proven irresistibly attractive to passengers.

This winning formula has been the driving force behind Stansted’s continued growth throughout the summer and early autumn seasons.

An Optimistic Outlook

Muniya Barua, Deputy Chief Executive at BusinessLDN, shed light on the broader context. She pointed out that the demand for international travel has rebounded significantly following the challenges of the pandemic.

London’s status as a tourism gateway is thriving, and the strong growth in passenger numbers at London Stansted and other airports is a testament to this.

Barua also highlighted the campaign to restore VAT-free shopping for international visitors, which could further boost overseas tourism and, in turn, stimulate the UK economy.

As London Stansted continues to flourish, the airport is poised to play a pivotal role in this economic revival.

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By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 5 Min Read
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