BAA reports 0.6% fall in August passenger numbers

| September 10, 2010 | 0 Comments
BAA reports 0.6% fall in August passenger numbers

Airports operator BAA has today reported a further fall in passenger numbers at its six British airports in August, hit by a weak holiday market, caused by economic uncertainty.

BAA, which is majority owned by Spain’s Ferrovial, said passenger traffic fell 0.6% in August year-on-year.

The group said 10.6 million passengers flew from its UK airports during the month, down from the 10.7 million in August 2009.

Meanwhile, BAA said 6.5 million passengers flew from Heathrow last month - a rise of 2.5% on the same month last year.

However, traffic was down 6.1% at Stansted - primarily due to a reduction in seat capacity at airlines in operation at the airport.

Commenting on its figures, BAA said: “Heathrow benefited from its greater exposure to the business travel sector, while the other UK airports in the group depend more on the currently weak UK outbound leisure market, which continues to be adversely affected by the continuing economic uncertainty that has led to casualties among smaller UK tour operators.”

Throughout 2010, BAA has reported falls in passenger numbers at its six UK airports - this has been due, in part, to the volcanic ash cloud disruption earlier this year, as well as the strikes at British Airways (BA).

BA cabin crew have held 22 days of strikes this year after being involved in a long-running dispute with the airline over cost-cutting measures, which include a pay freeze, a switch to part-time working for thousands of staff, as well as the removal of travel perks.

Last month, BAA also looked set to embark on industrial action, causing more travel chaos, but the company reached an agreement with the Unite union.

The threat of strike action, which arose after a dispute over pay, would have seen BAA’s six UK airports shut down over the crucial August bank holiday period as crucial staff including fire-fighters, security staff and ground staff at airports, would have taken part.

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