Scottish airports boosted by new flights

Glasgow airport Image copyright Glasgow Airport

Passenger numbers at some of Scotland's major airports were higher this October than they were in 2013.

Aberdeen airport saw an 8.8% rise compared to last year's figures, whilst Glasgow saw a 2.7% rise.

Both airports have recently added new international flights to their schedules.

Edinburgh airport saw a slight fall of 0.2% compared to last October, although its passenger figures over the previous six months have increased.

Record numbers

For Aberdeen, 10 October was the airport's busiest day ever, with 15,068 passengers using the site.

"We planned meticulously for the October get-away this year, recognising that it was set to be a busy time, and the hard work paid off," said the airport's operations director Roger Hunt.

"With growth comes capacity constraints and challenges, and we are working hard to address these in the short and medium-term."

This October was also the busiest in six years for Glasgow airport, and marked its 21st consecutive month of growth.

Meanwhile, Edinburgh Airport had its busiest-ever month earlier this year when 1.1 million people passed through it in July.

New flights

Ryanair has recently opened a new base at Glasgow airport, and will operate seven routes during the winter, growing to nine in the summer season. It is estimated that this will bring about 850,000 passengers a year to the airport.

Other recent route announcements include flights to Nova Scotia and Morocco, with further developments planned for 2015, including direct flights to Cuba and Munich.

"We have secured over 20 new routes and services in 2014 and have invested more than £20 million in refurbishing large parts of the terminal building," said Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport.

"During this time we have continued to welcome an increasing number of passengers through our doors."

Aberdeen airport has also experienced growth both in new international flights, and in its North Sea oil industry helicopter operations.

Image copyright Thinkstock

Looking ahead

Scotland has been the focus of a number of high-profile events in 2014, such as the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup.

Over six million people travelled through Edinburgh Airport in the six months between May and the end of October, which the airport says is partially due to the "fantastic summer of events" that the country has had.

"We're now fast approaching the end of yet another record-breaking year, and with Christmas just around the corner, are looking forward to a busy winter season," said Gordon Dewar, chief executive of Edinburgh Airport.

Ms McMillan also agreed that the months ahead promise to be busy.

"We helped welcome the MTV Europe Music Awards and a number of airlines, including Aer Lingus, have added capacity for Scotland's European qualifying match against the Republic of Ireland later this week."

"Large scale events such as these not only ensure the spotlight remains firmly on Glasgow, they undoubtedly help drive growth at the airport."

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