Gatwick Airport braced for a busy summer 2012

  • Around six million passengers expected to fly through Gatwick this summer
  • Brits set to escape wet weather and head to popular European holiday hotspots
  • As the world’s greatest sporting event comes to the UK, Gatwick gets ready to handle around 10% of all Games goers

Schools around the country are set to break for the summer holidays and from Friday 20 July through to Monday 3 September around six million people will be taking to the skies flying in and out of Gatwick to enjoy some quality downtime with their friends and family in the sun. A large number of UK holidaymakers are heading to popular holiday hot spots in Spain and Portugal to enjoy their well-earned break.

The busiest day for arriving and departing passengers looks set to be Friday 17 August, with around 138,000 passengers expected.

Holidaymakers flying out of Gatwick’s recently modernised South Terminal will experience the new walk-through World Duty Free (WDF), which is set to open on 20 July. People will be able to purchase their summer treats from a new range of brands including Bare Escentuals, Laura Mercier, Kiehls, Bobbi Brown and Crème de la Mer.

Those flying out of the North Terminal will be able to dine out at the new Jamie Oliver airside restaurant-cum-bar. Passengers who do not have the time to sit and eat a meal can order a freshly made “grab ‘n’ graze” from Jamie’s Italian Bakery to eat on the plane.

Commenting on summer at Gatwick, Paul Fitch, Gatwick Airport’s Head of Terminal Operations said: “Over this summer London will be turned into a huge sporting venue, watched and celebrated the world over. And although Gatwick is not a designated port of entry for this great sporting event, we are expecting to handle around 10% of all Games goers, so we will be doing all we can to make every journey for every passenger a positively memorable one this summer.

“Over the past few years, we have invested around £600 million to provide facilities that will ensure passengers can go from train to plane and back again with as little fuss as possible. There are more self-service check-in options to give passengers greater freedom to tag their own bags and drop them off. We have upgraded our security areas and introduced more lanes so that our guests can travel in confidence and know that we can get them through the process within five minutes or less 95% of the time – even during the busiest times of the day. We have also worked hard with our airlines and the Border Force to ensure the return journey is just as efficient.

“This is a special summer, and our staff and volunteers will wholeheartedly embrace the spirit of the Games and ensure all our guests arrive and leave with a positive impression of Gatwick and the great city it serves.”


Notes to Editors

Key summer traffic data

  • Between 20 July and September 3 2012, around six million people are expected to travel through Gatwick
  • Around 1.2 million UK holidaymakers will be flying out of Gatwick between 27 July and 12 August
  • 27 July is set to be Gatwick’s busiest summer departure date with around 71,500 passengers jetting off for their holidays
  • Around 1.1 million tourists will be flying into Gatwick between 27 July and 12 August – 13% more passengers than in the same period in the prior year
  • August 13, 14 & 15 are expected to be busy departure days at Gatwick with around 64,000 passengers leaving on each of those dates

Top ten holiday destinations for summer 2012

  1. Malaga
  2. Palma De Mallorca
  3. Faro
  4. Amsterdam
  5. Edinburgh
  6. Barcelona
  7. Dalaman
  8. Alicante
  9. Dubai
  10. Glasgow

Gatwick during the Games

  • Gatwick Airport is not a designated port of entry for, or sponsor of, the Games
  • That said, Gatwick is expecting to handle around 10% of the Games teams
  • The airport is ready and braced to cope with the Games challenges but passenger numbers will not be one of them
    • In any given year, Gatwick’s busiest months are July, August and September when planes fly at near full capacity. So Gatwick is used to supporting high passenger numbers during the summer season
    • The challenges Gatwick is ready and braced for are twofold; the first is ensuring the smooth and efficient handling of high volumes of bags and oversized bags. The second is around providing an efficient service to high numbers of reduced mobility passengers
  • Gatwick’s overriding aim during this period is to provide everybody a warm welcome and send off.
    • To that end, over 150 Gatwick staff have volunteered to greet and assist passengers and 300 Greater London Ambassadors will be on hand to help ensure all our guests receive a warm and positive experience from the moment they touch down
    • To help arriving passengers plan their onward journey Gatwick has launched an online Travel Hub which gives real time advice and information to help them plan their routes.
    • The travel section of the Gatwick Airport website has a ‘Getting to the Games’ page giving visitors all the links they need to plan their trip to the Games.
    • For those thinking of exploring the Sussex/Surrey region, Gatwick has developed a tourism portal for the region ( giving visitors inspiration and advice about the area’s attractions complete with route and traffic information


For more information contact:

Gatwick Airport press office

t: + 44 (0) 1293 505000


About Gatwick Airport

Gatwick Airport is the UK’s second largest airport and the busiest single-runway airport in the world. It serves more than 200 destinations in 90 countries for around 34 million passengers a year on short- and long-haul point-to-point services. It is also a major economic driver for the South-East region, generating around 23,000 on-airport jobs and a further 13,000 jobs through related activities. The airport is 28 miles south of London with excellent public transport links, including the Gatwick Express. Gatwick Airport is owned by a group of international investment funds, of which Global Infrastructure Partners is the largest shareholder.

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