In 1910, what is now Southampton Airport was once just North Stoneham farm meadow. RAF pilot Edwin Rowland Moon used these deserted meadows as a makeshift runway for his plane. During WWI, hangers and dormitories were built here by American soldiers. After the war, the structures were used to house refugees. What started as a runway, then turned into living quarters, officially became Southampton Municipal Airport in 1932. Throughout the 1970’s, the airport offered only the following flights:
Redevelopment of Southampton Airport
Southampton has come a long way since the early days. Two decades of redevelopment, at a cost of over £30 million, has turned Southampton into one of the top 20 busiest airport into the U.K. This redevelopment did not go unnoticed. The official Southampton International Airport opened in 1994. Just one year later, this new international hub won the following awards:
- British Construction Industry Award
- Building of the Year
- Best Structured Steel Design
- Customer Care
- Best Regional Airport
- Third Best Airport in the World
A new terminal was built in the early part of 2000. Since then, the airport has grown steadily. Over 1.7 million passengers use the airport each year. Over 43,000 planes arrive and depart annually.
Unlike airports of similar size and stature, Southampton only has one runway. The rest of the airport is very large and modern, however. There are 17 staffed check-in booths and nine self-service check-in kiosks. In total, the airport has over 800 square metres of retail and about 200 employees. Over 1,200 additional jobs are also created, both directly and indirectly, by the presence of the airport.
Parking can be a bit tight. There are only 2,729 car park spaces. Travellers are encouraged to avoid long-term airport parking. After all, this is a busy airport. Revenues exceed £86 million each year.
Popular Destinations from Southampton Airport
12 tour operators and carriers operate from Southampton. Flights depart to 44 destinations both within the U.K. and around the world. Most popular international destinations are covered including:
Some of the most popular airlines at Southampton are budget airlines, which provide low cost flights to popular summer holiday destinations. If you plan to travel through Southampton during the traditional holiday season, be prepared because you might encounter crowds.
On the other hand, there are also many advantages to Southampton. Considered a regional airport, Southampton is smaller than the international airports found in major world cities. However, passengers still have the capability to travel internationally from Southampton. If you don’t need to take a direct flight, you can often beat the crowds by choosing to depart from this somewhat smaller airport.
The Southampton Airport Experience
Southampton could be thought of as the “Goldilocks” of airports. Not so gigantic that passengers will be faced with massive crowds and long lines. But the airport is also large enough to meet most international travel needs and destinations.
Unfortunately, delays at Southampton Airport do occur. If your travel has been impacted, there are legal options available for getting a refund or payout. Click the button below for more information: