Best-ever December for Manchester Airport

PASSENGER numbers at Manchester Airport rose for a ninth month in a row in December.

The airport said last month was the busiest December in its 76-year history as passenger numbers rose 7.45% on 2013 to 1.43 million.

The moving annual total is now  21.97m, which is 6.15% higher than 2013, and means the its all-time record of 22.2 million in July 2006 is now just weeks away.

Ken O’Toole, chief commercial officer at Manchester Airport Group, said: “Looking back, 2014 has been an outstanding year for Manchester in terms of growth and gives us the momentum to attract even more new services and increased capacity on existing routes in 2015.

“The on-going success is testament to our Fly Manchester campaign, targeting people in our catchment who use airports other than ours. The large increase in passengers, with a mix of new long haul and short haul services, demonstrates the power of Manchester Airport and the critical role it plays in UK aviation.

“We now fly to over 200 destinations around the globe and continue to attract new airlines and routes.”

December also saw the start of the new Cathay Pacific service, flying direct to-and-from Hong Kong four times a week, making Manchester the only UK airport outside of London with a direct service to China.

2015 will see the launch of a host of new services, already announced in 2014, including: easyJet flights to Funchal (Madeira), Pisa, Porto and Marseille, Split and Kefalonia; Ryanair  to Bologna, Lisbon, Eindhoven, Zadar and Stuttgart and Thomas Cook flights to Miami.