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Gatwick Airport is braced for its busiest ever Christmas departure day, with around 67,000 travellers expected to pass through its doors.
Over the course of the whole Christmas period, Gatwick is expecting to see a record 2.1 million passengers travel through the airport, which equates to a 6% increase on last year.
San Francisco is Gatwick’s biggest growing long-haul destination, seeing an increase of 122.6% when compared to this time last year.
Other popular long-haul destinations include St Lucia, New York, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Mauritius and Boston.
In terms of short haul destinations, Lapland has proved to be the most popular, closely followed by Tallinn in Estonia, Oslo in Norway and Antalya in Turkey.
Gatwick Chief Commercial Officer Guy Stephenson said: “Every Christmas we welcome millions of people through Gatwick airport but this festive season is set to be our biggest ever.”
The festive period is also set to draw 13 million drivers onto the roads in the UK as travellers look to head off on their Christmas breaks.
A survey from the AA, which sought the opinions of 18,547 AA members, showed that 40% of respondents are set to drive more than 20 miles ahead of the festive weekend.
As a result, it is set to be the busiest period on the UK’s roads, with 35% of people revealing they are set to travel on 23 December.
Planned train strikes and engineering works, coupled with further traffic thanks to Christmas shoppers and commuters, are also set to add to the traffic on the roads.
Vince Crane, AA patrol of the year, said: “With Christmas falling on a Monday, many drivers may hope that journeys would be spread across the weekend – but it means more days of traffic as the getaway from work on Friday is followed by the last major shopping opportunity on Saturday and visits to friends and family on Sunday.”
The AA has advised travellers to check reports before setting off on their journeys, whether that’s simply for a shopping trip or for their Christmas break, to ensure there isn’t too much congestion.
If you’re jetting off on holiday this Christmas, it’s not too late to organise your travel insurance. Get a quote today to make sure you have the right cover!
Date Created: 21/12/2017