Is business travel returning? City Airport surpasses 1m passengers after bumper May.

Following two years of passenger numbers below the 1 million-mark, London City has announced that it has surpassed that milestone and are confident of finishing the year close to three million.

This follows a very successful May where the airport welcomed 290,000 travellers, representing 65% of 2019 numbers for the same period. There were also very few cancellations in the month with airlines operating 98% of their schedules and delivering the best on time performance of any London airport.

But does this mean that the business traveller is returning to London as historically, City Airport was a favourite for business travel due to its easy access into the city?

It seems that 290,000 passengers flew from London City Airport in May, up from 256,000 the previous month with total passenger volumes for 2022 already 29% up 2021’s end of year total. Leisure routes are proving popular, particularly Florence, Ibiza and Nice. Nine new routes to commence in June, including Thessaloniki, Barcelona and Guernsey

According to research, the number of summer leisure routes from London City is set to swell in June with nine new destinations being added to the departure board over the next three weeks.

Pent up demand for leisure travel, despite the recent travel,cancellation, staffing issues seems to continue from strength to strength which understandably is positive for the industry and cities alike.

Interestingly, Amsterdam remained the most popular route but – ahead of the Platinum Jubilee weekend – a number of leisure routes proved popular, including Florence, Ibiza, Nice and Malaga. For the Jubilee weekend itself, the airport saw a spike of inbound bookings from Edinburgh, Luxembourg, Zurich, as well as from Amsterdam.

It is fair to say that business travel has still much room for improvement and there is positivity that things will return to a healthier state of affairs in the near future. It is welcoming to see that leisure travel continues to improve and with so many more departing from and arriving to City Airport, perhaps this will help to continue to improve numbers returning to and enjoying London.