Thousands avoiding roads and trains by flying home for Christmas

December 16th, 2015

With major engineering works planned on railway lines during the festive period and congestion and delays likely on some of Britain’s major roads, thousands have once again decided to take advantage of competitive fares and faster journey times by flying home for Christmas this year.

Nathan Stower, Chief Executive of the British Air Transport Association (BATA), said:

“According to figures collated by BATA and provided by the UK’s three largest airlines operating domestic services – British Airways, easyJet and Flybe – more than 335,000 people will be taking a domestic flight in the week before Christmas Day.

 “Many passengers book far in advance to get the very lowest fares, but less than two weeks from Christmas it is still possible to fly home on Christmas Eve for less than the price of a train ticket.

 “Domestic air services fulfil a vital role, linking regions such as the South West with the North East without the need to go through London, or operating ‘over water’ routes connecting the different parts of the British Isles, where there is no practical surface transport alternative.

 “With £13 of Air Passenger Duty charged on a domestic flight (and £26 for a return), passengers travelling in the seven days before Christmas Day will pay around £3 million to the Treasury in this exorbitant flight tax.

“I would also take this opportunity to urge all passengers to check for any potential disruption to road and rail access to airports over the Christmas and New Year period and to allow enough time to get the airport and catch their flight. Rail access to some airports, particularly Gatwick and Heathrow, may be more difficult than usual during this period.”



15 December 2015