London City Airport predicts strong passenger recovery in 2022

London City Airport expects pent up passenger demand to fuel a surge in growth in 2022, with the introduction of new routes and the return of top-selling destinations, resulting in more than three quarters of 2019 routes operating at the airport this year.

The prediction follows the announcement of a busy summer schedule for British Airways, the airport’s biggest customer, and the easing of Covid restrictions, which is helping to fuel a return to business and leisure travel.

Flights to Milan, one of the airport’s top performing routes, and which alone carried 275,000 passengers from the centre of London to the centre of Milan in 2019, will be reinstated this year.

Barcelona will return to the London City network for the first time in almost a decade, while new routes such as Thessaloniki join established summer favourites like Split, Mykonos and Faro.

The upturn in confidence at the airport reflects the easing of travel restrictions and the proactive role London City Airport has played to work with and support its airline partners as the industry looks to bounce back from the worst of the pandemic.

Business traffic will be further strengthened in 2022 with British Airways moving the majority of its Luxembourg traffic to London City Airport, to complement the five daily flights soon to be offered by Luxair.

The impact of Covid-19 can be seen in the airport’s 2021 results. 714,000 passengers used London City, down 21% on 2020 and 86% on 2019. However, in the first six months of the year, when extensive global travel restrictions were in place, the airport handled only 75,184 passengers. In the last six months, as restrictions were eased, 638,785 passengers used the airport and very strong month on month growth was achieved.

Business travel returned strongly on all domestic routes in 2021, with Edinburgh the best performer. Internationally, Amsterdam was the airport’s busiest route, with KLM growing to four rotations per day in the autumn, with high passenger load factors. Other key business routes have included Zurich and Geneva, operated by SWISS and Frankfurt, operated by Lufthansa.

In October and November last year, business travel accounted for over 46% of all London City Airport journeys, which was the total year average in 2019. Between late September and late November, over 30,000 passengers used the airport each week, peaking at 37,000 in late October.

The announcement of additional testing and self-isolation requirements by Government to combat the Omicron variant saw passenger demand fall by 40% in December.

Commenting on the year ahead and on the 2021 passenger figures, airport CEO Robert Sinclair said:

At the start of the pandemic we made a conscious decision to work with and support our airlines, as we recognised they were facing the same challenges as we were. Investing in these relationships in the hard times has facilitated what we believe will be a strong bounce back starting with a really exciting summer schedule from London City.

2021 was certainly tough for everyone. However, despite predictions from some to the contrary, we did see the emergence of positive business travel trends, which we believe will continue in 2022 and will be so critical for the economic recovery of London and the UK more widely.

I am optimistic that the restrictions that remain today, particularly for vaccinated passengers, will be eased and in time, removed altogether so we can return to the simple and affordable ways of flying before the pandemic.

London City will be a huge asset for London in the years ahead and we look forward to welcoming more passengers and building relationships with new airlines so we can connect the capital to more destinations and opportunities across the world.

Negative Covid test required for passengers arriving in England or Scotland

Grant Shapps, the Secretary of State for Transport, announced the introduction of a new requirement for anyone travelling to England. 

He said,

If you are coming here from anywhere, whether you’re a Brit or a foreign national, then you’ll need to take a Covid test up to 72 hours before you come here.

If the pre-journey Covid test is positive, passengers will be required to quarantine, under the laws of the country from which they are travelling, until they recover.

Passengers will still be required to quarantine for ten days (which can be reduced using the test to release programme) on arrival in England. The quarantine rule does not apply when travelling from countries on the Government’s Safe Travel Corridor list.


The requirement for inbound passengers to show a negative Covid test before travelling to England, from a foreign country has been pushed back to 04:00 on Monday, 18 January.

PinPoint: the Duty of Care, Traveller-tracking and Covid resource tool

Global Travel Management has released PinPoint, a new, online tool enabling clients to manage some of their crucial duty of care obligations to employees and to remain abreast of Covid-related travel restrictions and the UK government’s latest travel guidance across the world.

PinPoint covers three main areas, each of which is critical for businesses planning or undertaking international travel, traveller tracking, FCO advice and local, government Covid lockdown rules, guidance and warnings from Safeture. And these three parts of PinPoint are complimented by a traveller-communication module, enabling employees to be reached by email or sms directly from the tool, if needed.

Traveller tracking

First, PinPoint enables any business to track the whereabouts of its employees travelling on business. The tool shows instantly where each colleague is and displays a colour-coded map, highlighting how many employees are travelling in each country or region at a given time.

PinPoint presents historic and future data, as well as current information. In this way it is possible to view the whereabouts of employees over historic date ranges. And, in the same way, details of future travel bookings can be displayed.

FCO advice

Second, PinPoint provides up to date information from the UK Government’s Foreign & Commonwealth Office on travel advice for any country.

The information is regularly updated by the UK Government and typically includes advice and guidance on any travel to specified countries, including, safety and security, terrorism, local laws, entry requirements, health advice and natural disasters, as well as the latest UK Government travel-related Covid advice for that country.

Safeture Covid data

Third, PinPoint gives immediate access to the Safeture data, which covers the infection rate and local government restrictions, laws and guidance on Covid.

This data is combined to produce a statistical evaluation of the levels of Covid in each country and the measures taken to manage and reduce the spread. With this information, it becomes easier to make informed decisions on how, where, when and whether to travel internationally.


PinPoint facilitates easy and swift communication with travellers. From any part of the tool it is possible to download itinerary information or to compose and send emails or sms messages to staff who may need to be reached urgently.

PinPoint: the Duty of Care, Traveller-tracking and Covid resource tool

Scott Pawley, Global Travel Management’s managing director said:

We have a number of clients who want to make quicker, better decisions about planning business travel. The Covid pandemic and the complexity of UK and foreign governments’ rules and laws make planning difficult. PinPoint helps our clients cut through this confusion and make informed decisions.

It’s critical that businesses are able to continue trading internationally. But the duty of care companies owe to their employees has never been more important. With PinPoint, it’s far easier to make fact-based decisions on travel, quarantine and risk. That’s why we’re rolling this tool out to so many clients.

If you would like to know more about PinPoint and how it provides vital information that is crucial to companies’ duty of care obligations, contact Scott Pawley or Paul Baker

JAL introduces touchless check-in

Japan Airlines has announced the decision to trial new touchless technology at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport, starting 24 August.

Touchless check-in: passengers can make selections by holding their finger 3 cm from the screen

Located at Terminal 1 South Wing of Tokyo Hanadea Airport, the two kiosks have been installed for a trial period, initially until 15 September.

Developed by Mitsubishi Electric and Oki Electric Industry Co, the new kiosks are equipped with state-of-the-art touchless sensors. These enable passengers to complete the whole check-in process without having to touch the screen at any point in the process.

The kiosks use infrared technology, so passengers are able to make selections by holding their finger 3 cm away from the check-in screen.

JAL say they will continue to embrace new technology to provide customers with a safe and secure travel experience.