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19 Dec 2017

Christmas Getaway 2017

As the big day approaches, the North East’s largest airport, Newcastle International Airport’s annual Christmas getaway is in full swing, with Christmas carol performances from three local primary schools kicking off the festive season last week. The recently-awarded ‘Airport of the Year’ is also now looking ahead to what is set to be a very happy new year.

More than 215,000 passengers will pass through Newcastle Airport over the festive period (16th December – 7th January), travelling in and out of the North East, visiting friends and family or simply escaping the cold British weather. The most popular destinations people are jetting off to this year include winter sun favourites the Canary Islands, mainland Spain, Dubai and beyond, as well as ski-spot Geneva and city breaks Berlin and Madrid.

While travelling to far-flung destinations, or returning home for Christmas, those 215,000 passengers will enjoy around 35,000 festive coffees and hundreds of mince pies and festive pastries in the airport’s restaurants and coffee shops.

Nick Jones, Chief Executive at Newcastle International Airport said: “Christmas is a fantastic time of year and that’s no different here at the airport. We always enjoy a really busy festive season at Newcastle and this year we’re on course to hit our busiest overall year in a decade – a fantastic Christmas gift.

“Thousands of people will make use of our flights, with some heading off for some much-needed winter sun, while others make use of our global hub network to make extra special visits to family and friends over the holidays. As well as those heading off, we have thousands of passengers returning to the North East for Christmas. Our arrivals halls are a wonderful place to be this time of year and it’s a privilege to play a part in so many people’s special moments.”

Invited to the airport last week to start the festive cheer were local schools St Mark’s RC Primary School in Newbiggin Hall, Newcastle; West Rainton Primary School in Houghton-le-Spring, County Durham; and St Patrick’s Primary School in Stockton, who wowed the crowds in the main terminal with their Christmas carols. The schools were invited by the airport’s nominated charities Middlesbrough Football Club Foundation, Newcastle United Foundation and Sunderland’s Foundation of Light, who have received thousands of pounds worth of donations in the last 12 months from fundraising at Newcastle Airport as official charity partners.

In addition to its fundraising achievements, the airport has enjoyed a number of successes in the last 12 months; the number of passengers travelling through the terminal reached the highest number in a decade, it was named ‘Airport of the Year and it was recently placed fifth in a list of happiest airports in the world. Looking ahead to the New Year, 2018 is set to raise the bar once again.

With investment into the airport continuing, the next 12 months will see the opening of the newly expanded Border Hall, the launch of a state-of-the-art baggage system and the use of two multi-million pound radars. Customer feedback will also continue to play a crucial role in development as the airport strives to continue offering the best experience in the UK to its passengers.

Nick Jones finished: “I’d like to take this time to thank all of those who have travelled through the airport this year, those who have helped us fundraise for some incredibly worthy causes and to everyone who has contributed to a record-breaking, award-winning year. I’d also like to wish all of our passengers and staff a very merry Christmas and a happy new year.”