St Albans district residents are among Luton’s most frequent flyers
- Credit: Archant
Residents of St Albans district are the county’s most frequent flyers from Luton Airport, according to a new report.
More than 1.2 million passengers travelled through the airport in total during March, marking the airport’s busiest ever Easter and the 14th consecutive month that the airport has had more than a million passengers.
Data released by the CAA (Civil Aviation Authority) shows that more passengers from Hertfordshire use Luton than any other London airport, with 1,897,215 flying from the airport last year - a 24 per cent increase from 2015. Herts residents made up 12 per cent of the airport’s total passenger numbers.
Of these, St Albans residents flew the most, with 402,980 passengers passing through the airport in 2017, the equivalent of 2.9 journeys for every resident.
After St Albans, Dacorum and North Herts residents were the next most frequent flyers, with 323,511 and 265,838 from those areas respectively.
In total, 13 per cent of passengers from Hertfordshire travelled for business while 87 per cent travelled for leisure.
Both easyJet and Wizz Air have announced six new routes from Luton, with easyJet now flying to Palermo and Genoa in Italy, Reus in Spain and Dalaman in Turkey, and Wizz Air flying to Bratislava, Slovakia and Bari, Italy.
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Fourteen new retail stores have also opened at the airport, with 30 more due to open by the end of the year as part of Luton Airport’s £160 million redevelopment programme, which includes an expanded terminal with more seating and new boarding gates.
Andrew Lambourne, of airport noise campaign group LADACAN (Luton and District Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise), said: “It’s preposterous for the CAA to highlight that St Albans residents are the most frequent airport users, in a way which implies that they shouldn’t be complaining about noise.
“The truth is that it’s the antiquated airspace design which forces flights across this whole region to be held low for as much as 25 miles. Planes leaving Luton cannot climb because Heathrow flights go over the top of them. This is grossly inefficient, wastes fuel, and causes far more noise and pollution than necessary.”