With millions jetting off on a well-earned break, new research has uncovered which day of the summer is due to be the busiest.
According to data published by aviation and travel analytics firm Cirium, August 23 will see the highest number of passengers flying from the UK, with almost half a million travellers forecast to take to the skies. The company cites the late August bank holiday weekend and school holidays as a key factor in the results.
The busiest single carrier on August 23 is due to be easyJet, which is scheduled to operate 614 flights from the UK on domestic and international routes. Elsewhere, British Airways is expected to offer up to 102,558 seats between its short-and long-haul network – with the bulk of these due to depart from its home at Heathrow’s Terminals 3 and 5. Irish low-cost giant Ryanair is in third place, with Jet2 and Flybe completing the chart.
But where is everyone going? Cirium’s number crunching suggests Spain is at the top of the list, closely followed by the United States. Italy, Germany and France finish the top five.
As for the airports themselves, unsurprisingly London dominates the figures, with Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Luton all in the top five. Manchester is the strongest performing regional hub in third position.
Jeremy Bowen, Cirium chief executive officer commented: “Our data shows that the summer holiday season for UK travellers is set to be busier than ever, with almost half a million people flying on August 23. Short-haul destinations across Europe are seeing a surge in popularity as airlines operate peak schedules to meet traveller demand.
“But, while flights to the US remain popular among UK travellers, services from the UK to the States are down by 0.3% on last year. The softening in demand could be due to a fall in the pound relative to the dollar, amid ongoing Brexit negotiations, or the changing political climate in the US.”
Cirium analyses more than 70 million passenger journeys annually as part of its industry insights. The group has grown significantly in recent years following the acquisition of various data intelligence companies, including Ascend, Innovata, Diio and FlightStats.