Friday will be busiest day for travel over Christmas
Published on Wednesday, December 18, 2019
Friday will be the busiest day for travel over the festive period, according to ABTA and easyJet.
ABTA estimates that five million passengers will head abroad from December 18 to January 2.
It said the peak travel day over Christmas and New Year would be December 20, while Christmas Day will be the quietest.
All airports are reporting high numbers, with564,000 set to depart from Stansted, 395,000 from Luton, around 550,000 from Manchester, 150,000 from Bristol, 146,000 from Glasgow and 80,000 from Newcastle International.
Heathrow is anticipating record numbers, according to ABTA.
EasyJet said it will fly 280,000 passengers on 1,772 flights on Friday, its busiest day – including 146,000 to or from the UK, toppling the record for the most passengers traveling with the airlne on one day during Christmas.
The airline will carry a record 3.8 million passengers between December 21 and January 5. The airline said many customers were travelling early to avoid the Christmas Eve rush next Tuesday.
Amsterdam and Geneva top the list of easyJet’s most popular destinations, followed by Paris.
ABTA members are reporting people heading shorter-haul this Christmas to the Canary Islands, Cape Verde, Morocco, Turkey and Egypt.
The first flight to Sharm El Sheikh since travel restrictions were lifted will also be heading out from Birmingham on December 19. For long-haul, Dubai and Goa have sold well.
ABTA agreed Geneva is likely to be popular, while Budapest and Barcelona are other winter destinations which are selling well this year.. Popular New Year’s Eve breaks include the cities of Amsterdam, Dublin and Berlin, whilst domestically London and Edinburgh continue to lead the way, it said.
Ali Gayward, UK country manager for easyJet said: “We are seeing high demand across our entire network of more than 1,000 routes on Friday 20 December as more people than ever before are flying either home or on holiday with us this Christmas in what will be our busiest Christmas ever.
“The Christmas period has always been one of our busiest times of year for our customers and this year will be no exception.
“Whether customers are flying to visit friends and family or incorporating skiing into their Christmas breaks by flying via any number of our ski destinations including Geneva, Lyon, Grenoble and Innsbruck, we are doing everything possible to make our customer’s Christmas travel as easy as possible.”