Scottish airports prepare for Easter rush

Scotland's airports are preparing for one of their busiest times of year, as tens of thousands of passengers fly off for Easter.

Edinburgh Airport - which is Scotland's busiest - said it expected to handle more than 30,000 passengers a day on Thursday and Monday.

Glasgow Airport estimates it will see 180,000 passengers over the next two weekends.

Aberdeen's getaway was last weekend, due to earlier school holidays.

Meanwhile, Inverness Airport said its new year-round daily flights to Amsterdam were proving popular with holiday makers.

The British Air Transport Association (BATA), which represents UK airlines, has warned that full passport checks and possible staff shortages could cause hold-ups for arriving passengers.

But if those problems do arise they are likely to affect London hubs such as Heathrow, rather than Scottish airports.

At Edinburgh, airport officials are expecting the number of passengers for Friday, Saturday and Sunday to only drop by a few thousand below the 30,000 mark each day.

'Extremely busy'

Palma, Malaga and Alicante are among the top destinations for those travelling from Scotland's capital, while others are heading to Amsterdam, Dublin, Paris, New York, Geneva, Madrid and Frankfurt.

Gordon Robertson, head of communications at the airport said: "We're expecting an extremely busy day on Thursday with people keen to maximise the days off they have this Easter, and as a result we are preparing for a very busy weekend.

"Most people are going for short breaks, and of course we'll be welcoming all those arriving here to spend their holiday in and around the Scottish capital."

The majority of Glasgow Airport passengers travelling over the next two weekends are heading for popular sunspots such as the Canary Islands, Turkey, the Balearic Islands and Florida.

Amanda McMillan, managing director at Glasgow Airport, said: "The Easter school holiday break is always a busy time for the airport and this year will be no different, which is very encouraging.

"We have enjoyed a great deal of success in recent months in expanding our route network and the greater choice of destinations is one of the main reasons why more and more people are choosing to start their holiday from Glasgow Airport."

Popular flights

Extra staff will be in place to help guide passengers through the check-in process.

Drivers are also being advised to allow extra time for their journeys to and from Glasgow Airport due to roadworks on the White Cart Viaduct on the M8.

An Aberdeen Airport spokeswoman said last weekend was busier when the schools had broken up, and that this weekend was expected to be "quite normal".

A spokesman for Highlands and Islands Airports Limited (HIAL) said: "We certainly expect this Easter to be the busiest for a number of years.

"We have seen passenger numbers grow across the HIAL group, with Inverness particularly strong.

"Inverness now has daily flights to Amsterdam and this is proving extremely popular, both with Highlanders flying to the continent and with Europeans looking for holidays in Scotland."

A Prestwick Airport spokeswoman said: "During the Easter holidays we are expecting over 60,000 passengers.

"Load factors on the majority of flights are extremely high with sun routes such as Alicante, Barcelona, Malaga and the Canaries being the obvious favourites.

"We are finding that passengers are travelling to Glasgow Prestwick from across Scotland and also the North of England to take advantage of Ryanair's low fares."

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