HiFly’s A380 Helps Boost Stansted Passenger Numbers By 7.3%

Stansted Airport has increased its passenger numbers by 7.3% year on year. The huge increase comes, in part, due to a number of charter aircraft operating to and from the airport. This included the magnificent HiFly Airbus A380.

Stansted Airport HiFly A380
Stansted played host to a number of large aircraft for football charter flights. Photo: London Stansted Airport

The airport is more accustomed to handling the majority of London’s Ryanair flights, however in May it also saw a number of much larger aircraft including Boeing 787s, 747s, Airbus A340s and an A380. This was during the busy half term holidays. As a result, the airport saw its 15th busiest day since it opened.

Stansted, London’s third busiest airport

According to statistics from the UK’s CAA, Stansted Airport is the UK’s fourth busiest airport. Being behind Heathrow, Gatwick, and Manchester, it is London’s third biggest. In the 2018 travel period, the airport handled just shy of 28 million passengers. This equated to 201,614 aircraft movements.


London Stansted also acts as one of the nations main low-cost airports. Indeed, it houses the largest Ryanair base in Europe, despite the airline being based in Ireland. The airport’s additional capacity also makes it the perfect hub for charter operations. It has also played host to Air Force One while it visits London.

London Stansted Airport HiFly A380
The airport saw its 15th busiest day on record. Photo: London Stansted Airport

Football charters make the difference

Stansted Airport saw a huge increase of 7.3% in passenger numbers year on year. This was due in part to the half term holidays, coupled with a number of charter flights to Baku for a big football match. The aircraft played host to a large number of large aircraft that the airport is not accustomed to.

This included a Boeing 787, Boeing 747s, Airbus A340s, and of course, the HiFly Airbus A380. The HiFly A380 is a unique aircraft in that it is the only A380 to be used for charter and wet-lease operations. The company acquired the aircraft second hand from Singapore Airlines, and we can’t wait to see it in action at the Paris Airshow!

London Stansted Airport HiFly A380
HiFly operated the airport’s first ever passenger A380 flight. Photo: London Stansted Airport

Half term helps

The half term also helped to boost the numbers of passengers travelling. On the 31st of May, Stansted reported their 15th busiest day of all time, handling an impressive 97,349 passengers. The airport reported the destinations that had seen the biggest passenger increase were “Turkey (26.6%), Netherlands (19.7%) and Portugal (13.9%)”.

London Stansted’s CEO, Ken Toole, said,

“May was another very busy month at London Stansted – the busiest May on record – as we welcomed over 2.57 million passengers to the airport. In addition to the rush of families heading off for the half-term holidays, the airport also played host to thousands of football fans departing to the two major football finals in Baku and Madrid.”

Did you travel through Stansted Airport in May? How was it? Let us know in the comments!


Leave a Reply