Gatwick airport has come out on top of a new survey by the Department for Transport, on the passenger experience of security screening.

The survey – which covered Gatwick, Heathrow, Luton, Manchester and Stansted airports during 2016 – asked travellers visiting the airports how satisfied they had been with their experience of the security screening.

A total of 89 per cent of Gatwick passengers said they were either satisfied or very satisfied, compared to 87 per cent for Heathrow, 83 per cent for Luton, 79 per cent for Manchester, and 78 per cent for Stansted.

Gatwick also scored highest when it came to perceived waiting times at the security, with 83 per cent saying they queued for five minutes or less, compared to 66 per cent for Luton, 60 per cent for Heathrow, 48 per cent for Manchester, and 41 per cent for Stansted.

Interestingly the average perceived security waiting times across the airports surveyed are broadly unchanged over the last few years, with 62 per cent of respondents saying they queued for five minutes or less in 2016, compared to 61 per cent in 2015, 62 per cent in 2014, and 60 per cent in 2013.

Across the five airports surveyed, over nine out of ten (91 per cent) of respondents agreed that inconvenience caused by security screening was acceptable – again Gatwick topped the chart, with 96 per cent agreeing.

Overall, passengers found queuing the least satisfactory aspect of security screening, followed by “the slow speed of the security process”, general organisation, staff attitude / politeness, and the removal of shoes.