London Gatwick Airport has scheduled the reopening of its South Terminal for March 27, 2022, to help meet an anticipated spike in summer demand following the easing of testing requirements for UK arrivals.
On February 11, 2022, testing requirements for those arriving in the UK were eased significantly, with fully vaccinated passengers (two doses) and those under the age of 18 no longer needing to take pre-departure and post-arrival tests.
Since June 15, 2020, flights have been operating solely from the airport’s North Terminal to save on costs. With the reopening of the South Terminal, British Airways short-haul routes will return to the airport from March 29, 2022, with 35 more European routes. Alongside this, easyJet will increase its operations and Vueling will add five new short-haul routes and base three aircraft at Gatwick. Wizz Air will also increase its operations from the airport with 18 more routes.
The expected increase in demand has led Gatwick to open 2,000 new jobs for security officers, IT specialists, engineers, shop and restaurant workers, ground and cargo handlers and cabin crew. Airlines operating from the South Terminal include Ryanair, Norwegian, Turkish Airlines, TAP, Eastern Airways, Aurigny, Aer Lingus, Air Baltic, Air Malta, Air Europa and Enter Air. easyJet will operate across both South and North Terminals.
Stewart Wingate, the CEO of Gatwick Airport, said, “After an incredibly challenging two years for the airport, our partners, local communities and the entire aviation industry are all delighted to be reopening our South Terminal next month. Following some major announcements from our airlines about significantly increased flying schedules, and from the UK government on removing travel restrictions and airport slot regulations, we can now look forward to once again operating a busy Gatwick this summer and beyond. This news means Gatwick and our partners can also begin recruiting new staff to help us meet this demand, which is excellent news for local people who have been so badly impacted by the effects of the pandemic.
“With our airlines now operating hugely increased flying programs, our passengers can once again choose from a fantastic range of destinations – both short and long haul – whether booking a holiday, family visit, business trip or that bucket list adventure they have dreamed of for years. It may, however, take time for consumer confidence to fully recover, so I urge the government to make 2022 the year when all travel restrictions are removed, including the unpopular passenger locator form and other remaining barriers to free travel.”