Passengers take wings at Heathrow as airport sees growth despite Brexit headwinds

Heathrow Terminal Five - Official Opening
Heathrow launched its 10th domestic route last month (Source: Getty)

London’s main airport Heathrow showed its 29th consecutive month of record growth in March as passengers headed for Africa and North America helped push up figures.


The number of trips made on connections to Africa jumped 5.8 per cent to 304,000, while freight to and from the continent grew 11 per cent as Virgin increased its offer.

Read more: Ranked: Heathrow's greenest airlines

Meanwhile, passengers on North American routes were boosted by 4.9 per cent to 1.5m.

And in the face of Brexit uncertainty, passenger numbers to and from the EU grew by 2.9 per cent on the year before to 2.2m.


Overall passenger figures grew 2.3 per cent to 6.5m, the airport revealed this morning.

“Despite Brexit uncertainty, Heathrow remains a bright light for the UK, with the role we play in keeping people and products moving evident,” said the airport’s chief executive John Holland-Kaye.

It comes in a month when Flybe announced it would open Heathrow’s 10th domestic route with a flight to Newquay in Cornwall, the first direct link between the airports since 1997. The route started on 31 March, boosting Flybe loads by nearly a quarter.

Read more: Heathrow enjoys 28th consecutive month of passenger growth

In March British Airways also launched its second service to Inverness, helping push up domestic flights by 0.2 per cent.

“Our new domestic connections will be pivotal in linking more regions and nations to global opportunities, benefiting all corners of this great country and we look forward to announcing many more of these as part of the expansion programme,” Holland-Kaye said.