British Airways (BA) has announced its largest summer schedule out of London Gatwick International Airport (LGW) in over a decade. After buying slots from the now-defunct Monarch, BA will see a 15% increase in flights of flights out of LGW during the summer of 2018, which runs between March 25 and October 27.
“Over the last five years our operation at Gatwick has seen 40% more customers travelling, with passenger numbers increasing from 4.4 million to 6.2 million,” said Alex Cruz, BA’s CEO. “We’ve also increased the number of routes we serve by more than 50%; in 2012 we flew to 48 different destinations, whereas now we serve 74. This undoubtedly highlights our commitment and focus to growing our Gatwick operation.”
Last year, BA operated roughly 1,000 flights per week during peak summer months. This year, the airline will add 150 additional flights per week. Most of the new flights will be increased frequencies on routes that BA already operates out of LGW. Service to Magala will increase to 35 weekly flights from 27; Alicante will see an increase from 14 to 22 flights per week; Faro will get 21 weekly flights; Tenerife will get 13 weekly flights instead of 6; Madeira will go from 6 services to 9; and Lanzarote will go from 3 weekly flights to 5. New destinations that BA will operate from LGW include Palma, Menorca, and Gibraltar.
“These exciting new routes give our customers even more choice of destinations at competitively low prices,” Cruz added. “According to CAA figures we are the most punctual of the three big short-haul carriers flying from London: at the 15-minute level and at Gatwick we outperformed easyJet’s punctuality by 13 percentage points and Ryanair’s by nine percentage points in 2017.”
BA is also expanding its long-haul operations out of LGW. It will add flights to Toronto and Las Vegas in the summer; service to Oakland and Fort Lauderdale began last fall.
“We are delighted to be able to further grow our presence at Gatwick by adding extra frequencies and improving our timetable,” said Cruz.
The summer season isn’t the only period getting an increase from BA. The airline will operate an additional 400 flights out of Gatwick between February 9 and March 24.
Featured image by Alf van Beem via Wikimedia Commons