NEARLY 80,000 passengers will take to the skies over Edinburgh this weekend as the airport gears up for a bumper Easter getaway.
Airport bosses said this year’s numbers would be up about 18 per cent on the same period in 2014, thanks to Easter falling at the start of the school holidays.
Traditional short-break destinations across the UK and Europe have topped a list of popular getaway spots, with Paris, Amsterdam, Malaga and Dublin ranking alongside London, Bristol and Belfast.
In addition, managers said nearly 70,000 people would fly in to the Capital by Easter Monday, delivering a seasonal “shot in the arm” to local tourism businesses.
Gordon Dewar, Edinburgh Airport chief executive, said: “Easter is always a very busy time at Edinburgh Airport as thousands of people travel through the terminal.
“It’s a time when many people are travelling to visit friends and relatives and we’re here to make sure their journey is as enjoyable as possible.
“Easter passenger numbers have increased by 18 per cent this year compared to 2014 as Easter has fallen at the start of the school holidays.”
He added: “Traditional sunshine destinations like Malaga and Paris are still very popular as people jet off for some early sunshine.
“Of course, many families will be staying in the UK and travelling to places down south like Bristol and London.
“The addition of new long-haul services over the last year means that passengers are now able to travel further afield from Edinburgh to destinations like Istanbul.”
Ahead of an expected boom in passenger numbers, Mr Dewar reminded those travelling to and from Edinburgh to be aware of strict security regulations.
“Although we’re not anticipating any issues, certain peaks over the next few days will be very busy, so we’re encouraging passengers to be ready for security and ensure all liquids, gels and pastes are 100ml or less and are presented in clear plastic bags,” he said.
“We hope all of our passengers have a great time wherever they are travelling to.”
Edinburgh travel agents confirmed a surge in demand for some Easter sun.
Gary Donaldson, a franchisee for GoCruise, whose company also books scores of flights to international destinations, said: “Families are after a quick dose of early sunshine, without having to go too far.
“It’s people getting a taste of the sun.”