Edinburgh Airport passenger numbers break 1.5 million barrier

The number of passengers using Edinburgh Airport broke the 1.5 million mark for the first time last month, new figures show.
Edinburgh is one of Europe's fastest growing airports. Picture: ContributedEdinburgh is one of Europe's fastest growing airports. Picture: Contributed
Edinburgh is one of Europe's fastest growing airports. Picture: Contributed

The capital’s airport recorded its busiest ever month on record with 1,501,988 passengers passing through, a 6.3 per cent increase on the same month last year.

Airport chiefs said it is the first time a Scottish airport has broken the 1.5 million passenger barrier, with new routes helping to drive the increase.

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Twenty five new routes have been launched since last July while some airlines are flying bigger aircraft.

Gordon Dewar, Edinburgh Airport chief executive, said: “These are fantastic figures for the airport, for Edinburgh and for Scotland, and they show an increase in passenger demand of 60 per cent over the past 5 years - that is phenomenal growth and easily makes us one of Europe’s fasting growing airports.

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“That growth is something we should be proud of as it delivers wide-ranging benefits for the country through job creation, tourism spend and business growth, but it also means we need to keep growing our infrastructure and build that additional capacity to cater for those increased numbers.

“We have invested huge sums already to keep up with that demand and are now for the first time in a position where we’re ahead of that curve thanks to a terminal expansion which will see us grow our passenger capacity to more than 17 million. That headroom is welcome and is a position we want to stay in and aim to do so through continued investment.

“Part of that wider picture is the need for improvements to the external infrastructure as well and that is an ongoing discussion with various partners as we must change and grow to maximise the opportunities that the airport brings.”

In July 498,699 domestic passengers used the airport, a 4.3 per cent increase on the same month in 2017.

This was driven by Flybe flying more passengers overall compared to last year and easyJet launching a new route to Jersey and operating more flights to Bristol than last July.

The airport handled 1,003,289 international passengers, 7.3 per cent up on last year following the launch of 24 new routes including flights to destinations such as Beijing, Tel Aviv, Budapest, Carcassonne and Eindhoven.