BAA sees traffic at Stansted and Southampton airports slump
recovery has hit demand for air travel
aviation industry by fragile consumer confidence and rising oil prices as it reported
falling passenger numbers at Stansted, the country’s third-largest airport.
months, warning that the leisure market, dominated by
performers last month, posting year-on-year falls of 7.4% and 8.7% respectively.
fragile, affecting airports up and down the country. Continued rises in the price
of oil are a concern for airlines and passengers in all our markets.”
all airports last year falling to the same level as in 2004.
2.3% increase in passenger numbers last month as it handled 5.3 million people.
vulnerability of secondary airports to the cost factors of low-cost carriers,
which often move their fleets around, and to weak discretionary spending. Matthews
added: “While Stansted and Southampton’s traffic performance remains disappointing,
both are well placed to benefit from an upturn in leisure travel as the economy
performance by moving their jets around in search of cheaper landing fees. “The
low-cost carriers are moving their planes around Europe.”
airport and reported a 1.4% increase in traffic last month, despite its popularity
with low-cost airlines such as easyJet, Ryanair and Flybe.
holidays or weekend breaks via short-haul flights, industry experts have warned
that rising oil prices could further dampen demand by pushing up fares. Last week
BA increased its fuel surcharges for the third time in less than four months as
the price of jet fuel rose to $134 (£82) a barrel – three times its low point
in early 2009. Fuel accounts for nearly a quarter of airline operating costs and
is largely out of carriers’ control, although they can mitigate some of the financial
pain through hedging, or betting on the long-term fuel price.
is still the oil price. It is rising rapidly.” Strickland added that charter operators
will be dealt a double blow by the unrest in the middle east, which is affecting
demand for destinations such as Tunisia and Egypt as well as raising fuel prices.