Edinburgh Airport Transatlantic Traffic Returns to Pre-COVID Levels

Edinburgh Airport (EDI) has almost fully recovered its international passenger numbers.



August 6, 2022

DALLAS - Edinburgh Airport (EDI) has almost fully recovered its international passenger numbers, reporting that its transatlantic flights are back to 2019 levels.

Flights to and from the UK and inside the Common Travel Area, which includes Ireland and the Channel Islands, have recovered more slowly, with traffic in June only reaching 65% of pre-COVID levels, according to The Scotsman.

Scotland's busiest airport reported similar July numbers but forecast that overall passenger numbers would not reach 2019 levels until the end of 2020.

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LoganAir G-LMRD ATR 42-500. Photo: Ervin Eslami/Airways

Summer of Chaos

Due to manpower shortages, the sharp increase has caused serious issues for airlines' baggage handling companies, resulting in a backlog of thousands of bags at the airport.

According to the most recent official statistics, EDI welcomed more than 1.2 million travelers in June, a rise of 84% from the 1.4 million travelers in June 2019.

In contrast, the numbers are only 176,000 from a year ago and 19,000 from the same month in 2020.

In June, the airport's peak hour between 6-7 am reached 90% of pre-pandemic levels, with a higher percentage of leisure flights than typically business-traveler-dominated services, like flights to London.

According to EDI, the number of travelers through the airport this year has reached 70% of pre-pandemic levels. By year's end, that number is predicted to reach 75%. However, international traffic has surpassed 2019 levels by 95%. with United Airlines (UA) et al returning to EDI in March 2022 after a two-year hiatus.

United Airlines N12125 Boeing 757-200 KIAH. UA resumed flights between Edinburgh and New York, Washington DC, and Chicago in March. Photo: Brad Tisdel/Airways

Comments from Edinburgh Airport

An airport spokesperson said, "It's encouraging to see the recovery trend continuing and it demonstrates the pent-up demand for travel we knew was always there. The fact our transatlantic travel is fully recovered is hugely positive.

"Clearly there have been some issues, as we warned there would be, but thankfully our operation has performed relatively smoothly and we've seen improvements in security, resulting in quicker clearance times and shorter waits."

"We know partners such as baggage handlers continue to face some issues across their network and we continue to support them when and where we can."

Featured image: Lesley Martin 20/02/2020 via Edinburgh Airport media center. © Lesley Martin 2020 e: lesley@lesleymartin.co.uk t: 07836745264