UK aviation: air traffic recovery led by medium haul and leisure in summer peak

Premium Analysis

Data from the UK's Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) show the recovery in passenger numbers in the third quarter of 2022 was led by international markets, with a focus on medium haul leisure destinations.

In the crucial 3Q2022, coinciding with the peak northern summer months, Spain was comfortably the biggest market by passenger numbers. The US, in second place, was the only intercontinental market in the top 10 to/from the UK.

Comparison with 3Q2019 passenger numbers shows the same 10 countries made up the top 10 in 3Q2022.

However, traffic to Greece and Turkey exceeded their numbers of the equivalent period of 2019 and so these two markets rose up the ranking. France and Germany fell the most in the ranking.

Overall, UK international passenger numbers recovered to 82% of 3Q2019 traffic in 3Q2022 - still a little short of the 85% level reached by seat capacity.

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