Scotland's biggest airports welcome record passenger numbers

Scotland's biggest airports welcomed record numbers of passengers in May.

Edinburgh airport saw record passenger numbers in May. Picture: Ian Georgeson
Edinburgh airport saw record passenger numbers in May. Picture: Ian Georgeson

Edinburgh Airport’s latest figures show 1,231,712 passengers passed through its doors, representing a 10.8% increase on May 2016’s statistics.

Airport chiefs say May this year was the third busiest month on record, just behind July 2016’s total of 1,332,142 passengers and the 1,296,087 welcomed in August last year.

The largest increase was in international passenger numbers which were up from 662,565 in May last year to 766,094 in 2017 - a leap of 15.6%.

Gordon Dewar, chief executive of Edinburgh Airport, said: “This is the busiest May on record and shows that our passengers are responding to greater choice at Edinburgh Airport.

“We continue to work with our airline partners to offer the destinations our passengers want, and in May launched Pula, Rhodes and Malaga with Thomson, and launched Thessaloniki.”

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On the other side of the country, Glasgow Airport had its busiest May on record after more than 910,000 passengers travelled through its doors - an increase of 10% on the same month last year.

International and domestic routes were up 16.5% and 2% respectively because of additional capacity on airlines including Thomson and Thomas Cook.

Airport chiefs say there was strong demand for its European city destinations including Eurowings’ Dusseldorf route and Ryanair services to Brussels, Sofia and Valencia.

A recently-launched Lisbon route by Ryanair is said to have performed particularly well as hundreds of Celtic fans travelled to the Portuguese capital to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the club’s 1967 European Cup win.

Long-haul services were also up by 15% because of an increase in demand for North American flights including Florida and Emirates’ double daily service to Dubai.

Amanda McMillan, managing director of Glasgow Airport, said: “May was an extremely successful month which saw the launch of Delta Air Lines’ inaugural New York-JFK route and new service to Bergen and the Isle of Man.

“Strengthening our EU connectivity continues to be an area of focus, so Lufthansa’s recent decision to expand its current seasonal weekly service to four flights per week all year round was extremely welcome news.”