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August 24, 2022

Gatwick ends capacity restrictions as it swings back to profit

The airport’s operating costs rose to £143.2m from £92.5m.

Gatwick Airport (LGW) in the UK has reported a profit after tax of £50.6m in the first six months of this year, as against a loss of £244.6m in the same period of 2021.

The airport returned to profitability with travel restrictions being lifted in the country ahead of the Easter holidays.

Its EBITDA for the January-June 2022 period stood at £148.3m, versus a loss of £50.2m in the first half of last year.

The airport’s operating costs rose to £143.2m from £92.5m while revenues jumped 589.1% year-on-year (YOY) to £291.5m.

Passenger footfall increased to 13.1 million from 0.6 million over this period.

It also reported a strong recovery in monthly passenger numbers, which grew to 3.8 million in July from 0.8 million in January and expects further increase in the peak summer.

Gatwick Airport has now scrapped capacity restrictions, which were imposed in June as it tackled with labour shortages.

The airport says that it is now ‘business as usual.’

Besides, it has lifted traffic guidance for this year to 32.8 million passengers.

The airport is now working alongside airlines to reduce the cancellation levels by proactively managing the capacity for July and August.

In advance of the peak summer season, the airport has reopened the South Terminal.

It is also consulting airlines to plan for the same quarter next year. However, the medium-term uncertainty remains due to the macro-economic climate.

To bridge resource gaps, the airport is working together with ground handlers and airlines by providing contingent resources and incentives.

Additionally, it completed resurfacing the main runway and made progress in preparing the planning application for the current northern runway for routine use.

Gatwick Airport CEO Stewart Wingate said: “We still have some considerable way to go, but strong demand has fast-tracked Gatwick’s recovery from the pandemic, particularly in the last quarter since all UK travel restrictions were removed.

“Air traffic volumes have reflected this strong passenger demand and have bounced back to around 75% of pre-Covid levels.

“The unprecedented growth in traffic led to short-term operational issues in June. However, our decisive early action to limit the airport’s capacity in the crucial school holiday period of July and August has ensured passengers have experienced reliable flight timetables over the summer months.”

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