London International Airport traffic soars to new record in 2018

London International Airport has seen significant traffic growth in recent years. Matthew Trevithick/980 CFPL

The number of passengers boarding flights at London’s International Airport continues to rise.

Last year was another record-breaking year as more than 537,000 walked through the airports’ doors in 2018, a 3.1 per cent increase over 2017.

READ MORE: London International Airport reports record-breaking traffic in 2016

More than 850,000 passengers are expected to walk through London International Aiport in 2019, a forecasted passenger increase of 50 per cent, which officials say represents phenomenal growth for the airport.

For the first time in the city’s history, London now offers direct flights to all major cities in Canada.

READ MORE: London’s airport adding daily flights to Calgary

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Swoop Airlines, WestJet and Air Canada each increased their service to allow London these direct flights.

“We were very fortunate to get the announcement from Swoop, WestJet and Air Canada. It’s a real positive for our community,” said London airport CEO Mike Seabrook.

Seabrook believes more non-stop flights to leisure destinations like Las Vegas, Phoenix, Florida and the Caribbean will be the ticket to an even busier airport.

“There is a list of destinations we believe we have a realistic shot at,” he said.

“As the airport gets busier and more people experience the ease of flying from here, it helps pave the way for additional growth.”

READ MORE: Swoop flying out of London to three Canadian cities for as low as $139

To accommodate growth, $12 million will also be invested in capital improvements during the 2019 fiscal year, with $6.5 million earmarked for one of the taxiways and another large portion is set aside for the baggage handling system.

“We are doing upgrades that may not be apparent to the passenger but certainly improves our process at the airport,” said Seabrook.

No expansion is currently in the plan for London’s airport, but Seabrook says that could change.

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“We have very little debt, we have low costs that we pass on to the airlines so if we ever do need to expand, we certainly can,” he said.

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