London Stansted Airport passenger volume surpasses pre-pandemic levels

London Stansted Airport (STN) has achieved a significant accomplishment by returning to pre-pandemic levels of passenger traffic, becoming the first major airport in the United Kingdom to do so. With the travel season peaking, summer is expected to be the busiest time in Europe. 


In July 2023, London Stansted recorded its third busiest month in history, with a total of 2.81 million passengers, equivalent to 102% of the number it served in July 2019, according to a report by City A.M. As reported by The Independent, London Stansted saw an average of 90,322 passengers per day in July, compared to 88,709 in the same month in 2022. 


Located northeast of central London, Stansted is the fourth-largest airport in the country after Heathrow (LHR), Gatwick (LGW), and Manchester (MAN), serving over 160 destinations across Europe, Asia, and Africa. It is part of the Manchester Airports Group. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, London Stansted handled 23.29 million passengers in 2022, representing only a 10% decrease compared to 2017 figures, which is one of the most impressive improvements among all UK airports. 

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London Stansted has been experiencing a series of positive developments recently, including the expansion of services by various airlines such as Pegasus, which has its largest schedule yet, and Emirates, which has resumed twice-daily Dubai flights in 2023. Additionally, the airport authorities have revealed their ambitious plans to expand the terminal, with the project set to begin in the summer of 2024 and expected to be completed in approximately three years, pending approval. It is important to note that Ryanair dominates London Stansted, with more than 100 destinations served by the low-cost carrier. Ryanair recently reported its busiest month on record, carrying 18.7 million passengers across Europe in July, despite ongoing pilot strikes in Belgium and Italy. The airline is expected to be just as busy in August, with last-minute vacations being prompted by poor weather in the UK and Ireland.

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