Manchester Airport gears up for first of the year’s big getaways after best ever January
· Almost 700,000 passengers expected during half-term getaway
· This comes after 1.8m passengers came through last month – making it the airport’s busiest January on record
· 99.9% of passengers queued for less than 15 minutes to get through security
Manchester Airport had its busiest January on record as 1.8m passengers passed through the Northern hub last month.
It is the second consecutive record-breaking month for the airport, which also had its busiest December yet.
Dubai was the most popular destination for travellers in January, with winter sun seekers heading there either to enjoy its attractions or to connect to other far-flung destinations.
February is set to be a busier month at the airport with half term for many schools starting this week. Almost 700,000 passengers are expected between Friday, February 9 and Sunday, February 18, with the most popular destinations set to include Tenerife and Alicante.
Those passengers can feel confident of a good experience in the airport with data showing that during January 99.9% of passengers queued for less than 15 minutes to get to security – and nine out of 10 passengers waited for less than five minutes.
Manchester Airport Managing Director Chris Woodroofe said:
"January can be a great time to travel - whether you’re looking to get a bit of sun or heading for the slopes for some winter sports, you can take advantage of things being a bit quieter and get some good offers – and we’ve certainly seen that here at Manchester Airport.
"Our network of around 200 routes means we connect the people of the North to more destinations than any airport outside London and in practice that means that people here have real choice when it comes to their trips. So whether you’re travelling from Bolton to Bodrum or Bradford to Beijing, we have you covered all year round.
"It’s half term for lots of families this week so we’re seeing one of our first really busy weeks of the year – but with 99.9% of our January passengers queuing for less than 15 minutes to get to security, we’re confident that all those jetting off this week will be able to start their holidays here at the airport.
"We’re preparing for a really exciting year at Manchester Airport – we have a range of new routes launching – including Las Vegas from June and others still to be announced. We’re also continuing work on our award winning Terminal 2 as we reach the final stages of our £1.3bn transformation programme.”
January’s most popular destinations were:
1. Dubai – 89,783 passengers
2. Dublin – 82,188
3. Amsterdam – 79,841
4. Tenerife – 76,960
5. Qatar – 60,948
Manchester Airport is preparing for the launch of a number of new routes in the coming months including Virgin Atlantic flying to Las Vegas, making Manchester the only English airport outside London to fly direct to America’s West Coast, Royal Jordanian’s new service to Jordan’s capital Amman and Luxair’s flights to Luxembourg. This year will also see an increase in the service to Beijing with Hainan Airlines to make it daily.
In January the airport also marked a year since work started on the final phase of its £1.3bn transformation programme. The airport’s brand-new Terminal 2 is already open but work continues and will see it double in size, meaning the modern facility will serve over 70% of the airport’s passengers when it is fully open in 2025.
The first phase of the project was awarded the prestigious Prix Versailles in November, which recognises it as one of the most beautiful airport buildings in the world.
Over the coming months the programme will reach a number of key milestones, including the announcement of new retailers, bars and restaurants to go in the new section of Terminal 2 and the activation of a new, state-of-the-art baggage system.