London Luton airport has reported that its summer passenger numbers were down 66 per cent compared to pre-pandemic levels.

The airport saw 1.2 million passengers in July and August this year compared to 3.6 million in 2019, which it blames on “the uncertainty created by changing travel restrictions”. This also equates to a 4 per cent drop compared to the summer of 2020.

The airport also revealed that its most popular destinations were Palma de Mallorca, Bucharest and Belfast.

The airport is calling for more support from the government in order to boost the recovery of the sector, citing cheaper testing as a solution for simplified approach to travel. It is also calling for additional financial support through the winter period, such as an extension of the job furlough scheme for travel businesses.

CEO of London Luton airport, Alberto Martin, said:

“We recognise the effort Government is making to try to help the sector navigate this difficult period, but these figures make clear the need to urgently overhaul the current travel system in order to restore passenger confidence and enable the sector to trade its way through the winter season and out of the crisis. Further specific financial support is also needed while the outlook remains so uncertain.”

The airport recently launched a range of new digital services to improve the passenger experience.