Wizz Air passenger numbers are flying after airline announced new UK base at London Luton last month

 
Rebecca Smith
The Eastern Europe-focused airline sad its number of seats grew 14.5 per cent last month
The Eastern Europe-focused airline sad its number of seats grew 14.5 per cent last month (Source: Getty)

Low-cost Hungarian carrier Wizz Air has announced a bumper rise in passenger numbers for last month.

Passenger numbers rose 21.8 per cent to 1.7m compared to the same month last year, while load factor, gauging how full the planes are, rose from 86.4 per cent in February 2016 to 91.9 per cent.

On a rolling 12 month basis, passenger numbers rose 19 per cent to 23.44m.

Read more: Wizz Air sets up new base at London Luton as it underlines commitment to UK

Last month the airline announced it was ramping up expansion efforts, adding 12 new routes across Macedonia, Latvia, the UK, Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary and Poland. It also announced a new base in London Luton, which will open on 18 June, taking Wizz Air's number of bases to 28.

Chief executive Jozsef Varadi said that while there had not been a change in passenger demand since the vote, the sterling slide had diminished the euro value of its sales.

Varadi said that this new announcement “underlines Wizz Air’s commitment to the UK”.

Read more: Wizz Air shares slump as airline cuts profit forecast

“By establishing base operations at London Luton, where Wizz is already the second largest operator and an important supporter of local jobs with our business partners, we are also creating direct local jobs with one of Europe’s fastest-growing airlines for the first time,” he added.