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Infratil Airports Europe Monthly Overview

22 Sep 2008

Glasgow Prestwick Airport

Glasgow Prestwick handled 256,271 passengers in August, an increase of 4% on the same month last year.

This rise, driven by new routes to Belfast, Cork and Katowice as well as additional Bournemouth services, equates to 10,000 passengers.

By comparison, passenger numbers at Glasgow Abbotsinch in August were down 5.2% on the prior year, with BAA’s overall Scottish traffic down 3.4%.

August was the fourth consecutive month in which Glasgow Prestwick has recorded a year-on-year rise in passenger traffic, demonstrating that strong low cost operators such as Ryanair and Wizz Air remain attractive to travellers.

The year-to-date passenger total of 1,157,751 is 2% ahead of the equivalent period last year.

Glasgow Prestwick handled 1,304 tonnes of freight during August, down 48% on last August’s total.  The loss of Atlas / Polar business in June continues to leave a large gap in the airport’s monthly freight performance, which accounts for most of the year-on-year shortfall.

Glasgow Prestwick remains very well placed to handle UK freight traffic, particularly to/from North America, and the capacity lost recently to the UK market is likely to be replaced as fuel price and freight rates rebalance.

The year-to-date freight volume of 10,277 tonnes is 23% down on the same period in 2007.

Kent International Airport

Kent International handled 1,081 tonnes of freight in August, an increase of 25% on the prior year total of 867 tonnes.

EgyptAir delivered an improvement of nearly 300% against August 2007 with regular export loads and Cargolux also grew year-on year volume.  

MK Airlines, the previous largest customer, has recommenced flying but has focused its flying in Luxembourg to shorten flying distance, although has operated an ad-hoc flight during the month. The year-to-date freight volume of 7,400 tonnes is 2% behind the equivalent period in 2007.  

Lübeck Airport

Lübeck Airport handled 56,467 passengers in August, 13% down on the prior year performance and a repeat of July’s result. This reflects the overall drop in capacity (13.6%) against August 2007.

The year-to-date passenger total of 249,709 is 14% down on the equivalent period last year, and therefore also consistent with capacity.

Ryanair will operate its Dublin service throughout winter after this capacity was moved elsewhere last year. It is hoped this will exploit a gap in the Hamburg market following Aer Lingus’s decision to cease their four times weekly service to Dublin from Hamburg Airport.

Seguro Travel Limited

Seguro Travel Limited stopped trading on September 10 due to the collapse of Futura Airways - which operated more than 80 per cent of its flight schedule.

Seguro had built a strong and loyal customer base at both Glasgow Prestwick and Kent International airports through its brands Seguro Holidays and Kent Escapes.  Demand for tailored charter services from Glasgow Prestwick and Kent International airports may be taken up by other tour operators for next summer.

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