Doncaster Airport Steals A March On Aviation ‘Neighbours’
As the debate around expansion at Heathrow continues to divide travellers and politicians, new Saga research out today reveals that half (49%) of Saga members would rather use a regional airport like Leeds Bradford International or Manchester.
A similar proportion said that they would be willing to pay more (48%) or choose an alternative airline (53%) in order to fly from their preferred regional airport with Doncaster Sheffield getting top marks for quality and service.
The survey of more than 9,500 travellers revealed that those who would opt for a regional departure do so because they live closer to the airport (89%) and because local airports are generally less busy (72%) in comparison to larger international airports.
Travellers cited their biggest bugbears about airports as queues for check-in, security and baggage reclaim and the cost of food and parking. Regional airports scored much better on these elements than any of the London airports.
Respondents were asked to rate the services provided by UK airports, everything from the length of the queues to the helpfulness of staff and the cleanliness and comfort of the airport.
Doncaster Sheffield airport achieved the highest scores in every category apart from the range of food and shops available. Exeter and Newcastle airports also scored well, coming in the top three for many of the categories, including staff helpfulness and the availability of flight information.
London airports did not fare so well in the survey, with Gatwick, Luton and Heathrow rated the lowest for the cost of both food and parking .
The poll revealed that just 16% of Saga members said they preferred not to fly from regional airports, roughly half of these said this was because larger airports offered a wider variety of flight destinations (51%), better transport links (49%) or had better facilities (45%) in comparison to smaller regional airports.
Maria Whiteman, Managing Director of Saga Holidays commented:
“It is clear that people love the convenience of travelling from their closest airport and the benefits of regional airports do not stop there. People find they queue less at smaller airports, the staff are more helpful and flight information displayed more clearly.”
Doncaster Airport Steals A March On Aviation ‘Neighbours’, 27th July 2018, 9:00 AM