East Midlands Airport welcomes Shannon and Santorini in 2019

  • - Demand for Christmas travel up on last year
  • - More choice for passengers in 2019

Almost 231,000 passengers flew to and from East Midlands Airport (EMA) in December, that’s 5000 more than in the previous year. 120,000 of those flew during the peak Christmas and New Year get-away period.

As well as ending a busy year for EMA, December saw the conclusion of a five period of consistent growth in passenger numbers for the airport. Since 2013, passenger numbers have increased by 12.7%. During that time, the airport has also hit new milestones for cargo. It now facilitates over £10bn worth of non-EU trade a year and handles 1000 tonnes of goods a day making its dedicated freighter aircraft operation the largest of any UK airport.

The New Year is often when people start looking ahead to their holidays this year. And the short, gloomy days provide the perfect catalyst for thinking about sunnier climes.

While winter sunshine resorts such as the Canary Islands and those in Southern Spain continue to top the list of destinations for EMA passengers between now and April, over the coming weeks the airport will be popular with winter sports enthusiasts flying to Geneva, Salzburg and Chambery for their Alpine fix.

EMA passengers looking ahead to the spring and summer (the official summer season kicks off on 1 April) will have more destinations to choose from thanks to new routes and the welcome return of flights to some former favourites.

Greek Island Santorini (TUI) and Shannon in the Republic of Ireland (Ryanair) are new additions to the 80 plus destinations available to EMA passengers. After a gap of nearly five years, Flights to Tunisia return with TUI to Enfidha Hammanet. And, in response to the national increase in demand for travel to Eastern European resorts, have added Bourgas in Bulgaria to its list of routes from EMA this summer.

In the coming years the aviation sector is forecast to grow strongly which means more demand from airports like East Midlands. The airport is hoping to rise to this challenge to facilitate growth in both trade from its nationally important cargo operation and more routes for passengers.

Even with Brexit looming, airport bosses are advising passengers not to worry and book this year’s holidays and trips with confidence. Agreements are in place to ensure that passenger flights between the UK and EU can continue post March, even in the event of a no-deal.

Karen Smart, EMA’s Managing Director, says: “This is great news for people looking to get away for a weekend city break, skiing or a much-earned summer holiday by the pool and beach. And with a wider selection of routes, coupled with our family-friendly facilities and convenient location, we’re the perfect choice of airport to begin your next holiday.”

Gearing up for its busy summer season, EMA is recruiting additional staff for important roles across its security, passenger services and retail operations. People interested in working at the airport can find out more at the airport’s jobs fair on Saturday 26 January 10am-2pm, which is held in the departure hall.