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A Hot Summer for MAG as Passengers Flock to Holiday Favorites

  • Airports
  • 5 min read

Manchester Airports Group expects a bustling bank holiday weekend.

With over 800,000 passengers projected to travel from an airport within the Manchester Airports Group (MAG) on the last summer holiday, the UK’s largest airport group anticipates its busiest weekend of the year. This surge in passenger traffic marks the end of a successful summer season and the conclusion of the school holidays. Travelers hailing from all corners of the country will either embark on a final getaway or return home. 

MAG, which manages Manchester, London Stansted, and East Midlands Airports, has observed a robust recovery in passenger footfall despite the lingering impacts of the pandemic. This resilience is a testament to the unwavering confidence of travelers who have effectively overcome the travel restrictions imposed during the COVID-19 shutdown. 

Record Summer Season and High Service Levels for MAG

During the initial three months of summer, MAG airports catered to over 22 million passengers, setting a new record for the group. This August bank holiday weekend adds to the group’s accomplishment by marking a successful end to summer. 

A recent survey of over 2,000 passengers conducted in July and August revealed an impressive 94% rating for their overall airport experience, labeling it as good, very good, or excellent. This strong level of satisfaction can be attributed to MAG’s recruitment of over 3,000 new staff members over the past year, resulting in 98% of passengers clearing security within 15 minutes in July. 

Moreover, all three airports within the group have received the highest ‘very good’ rating from the CAA for their assisted travel services, reinforcing their commitment to passenger comfort and convenience. 

Surge in Passenger Numbers at MAG’s Individual Airports 

Manchester Airport, one of the busiest hubs within the group, expects to facilitate the travel of approximately 395,000 passengers over the bank holiday weekend, with an anticipated 103,000 passengers on a single day. Meanwhile, London Stansted and East Midlands Airport are set to serve 389,000 and nearly 70,000 passengers, respectively, solidifying the group’s position as a key player in the UK’s aviation sector

In July, passenger numbers at MAG reached 97% of pre-pandemic levels, with London Stansted becoming the first major UK airport to exceed pre-COVID-19 traffic numbers at 102%. This weekend, passengers will continue to leverage MAG’s expansive route networks, granting them direct access to their desired destinations. 

London Stansted, which caters to more European routes than any other UK airport, identified Turkey as its fastest-growing market this year. At Manchester Airport, approximately 6,000 passengers will travel to Dubai, alongside other popular European destinations, using their popular triple-daily service this weekend. East Midlands’ network, on the other hand, will see travelers flocking to summer favorites such as Malaga and Alicante.

CEO Comments on Manchester Airport Group’s Stellar Summer Performance

MAG Deputy CEO, Ken O’Toole, said: “This summer’s performance demonstrates our commitment to offering travellers a great experience at our three airports at their busiest time of the year. 

“We have welcomed 22m people so far this summer and have been pleased that our work to bring in more colleagues and improve our customer experience has allowed passengers to focus on starting their holidays as soon as they get to the airport. That has reflected in the really positive feedback we have had from people who have travelled through our airports in July and August, more than 90% of whom said they had a good, very good or excellent experience.

“This weekend our airports will serve among their highest number of passengers so far this year, as people choose them for the range and frequency of destinations we offer, allowing them to travel on well-earned breaks at their convenience.

“I am proud of the high levels of service which we have offered to passengers on a consistent basis this summer. This is testament to the hard work of our colleagues across the Group, and I am confident in our commitment to continue delivering at this level.”

East Midlands Airport expects 70,000 travelers eager for a last-minute escape during the bank holiday.

As a hub of activity for seven popular airlines – Ryanair, TUI, Flybe, Eastern Airways, Aurigny, and Blue Islands – East Midlands Airport (EMA) is a swift and welcoming gateway for vacationers to diverse, enticing destinations. These range from the sun-kissed regions of Spain, the Balearics, and the Canaries to the captivating landscapes of Turkey, Greece, and the Greek Islands

Offering a blend of proximity and convenience, EMA is an attractive option for the approximately eight million individuals residing within an hour’s drive. The airport’s reputation for efficiency is further solidified by its record of fewer delays than any other UK airport in the previous year. Moreover, it boasts a remarkable achievement of facilitating over 99% of passengers through security clearance in under 15 minutes, thereby ensuring a seamless travel experience

In anticipation of the bank holiday weekend, EMA is poised to accommodate nearly 70,000 travelers embarking on their journeys to various European destinations.

EMA’s Customer & Planning Director Mike Grimes says: “Late August and early September are popular times for families to get away for that last bit of summer sun and our airport is within easy reach for millions of people across the Midlands. Close to the motorway network and small and efficient enough for most people to get from their car to the departure lounge in 20 minutes, EMA is a great choice for a quick getaway this bank holiday.”

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